Sixth Mississippi State Conference on Differential Equations and Computational Simulations.
Electron. J. Diff. Eqns., Conference 15 (2007), pp. 1-9.

Multiphoton response of retinal rod photoreceptors

Vasilios Alexiades, Harihar Khanal

Phototransduction is the process by which light is converted into an electrical response in retinal photoreceptors. Rod photoreceptors contain a stack of (about 1000) disc membranes packed with photopigment rhodopsin molecules, which absorb the photons. We present computational experiments which show the profound effect on the response of the distances (how many discs apart) photons happen to be absorbed at. This photon-distribution effect alone can account for much of the observed variability in response.

Published February 28, 2007.
Math Subject Classifications: 92C45, 35K60, 65M99.
Key Words: Phototransduction; signaling; diffusion; parabolic system; finite volume scheme; parallel computation.

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Vasilios Alexiades
Department of Mathematics
University of Tennessee, Knoxville, TN 37996, USA.
and Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Oak Ridge, TN 37831, USA.
Harihar Khanal
Department of Mathematics
Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University
Daytona Beach, FL 32114, USA

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