Inhibitory components of retinal bipolar cell receptive fields are differentially modulated by dopamine D1 receptors

Reece E. Mazade, Erika D. Eggers

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


During adaptation to an increase in environmental luminance, retinal signaling adjustments are mediated by the neuromodulator dopamine. Retinal dopamine is released with light and can affect center-surround receptive fields, the coupling state between neurons, and inhibitory pathways through inhibitory receptors and neurotransmitter release. While the inhibitory receptive field surround of bipolar cells becomes narrower and weaker during light adaptation, it is unknown how dopamine affects bipolar cell surrounds. If dopamine and light have similar effects, it would suggest that dopamine could be a mechanism for light-adapted changes. We tested the hypothesis that dopamine D1 receptor activation is sufficient to elicit the magnitude of light-adapted reductions in inhibitory bipolar cell surrounds. Surrounds were measured from OFF bipolar cells in dark-adapted mouse retinas while stimulating D1 receptors, which are located on bipolar, horizontal, and inhibitory amacrine cells. The D1 agonist SKF-38393 narrowed and weakened OFF bipolar cell inhibitory receptive fields but not to the same extent as with light adaptation. However, the receptive field surround reductions differed between the glycinergic and GABAergic components of the receptive field. GABAergic inhibitory strength was reduced only at the edges of the surround, while glycinergic inhibitory strength was reduced across the whole receptive field. These results expand the role of retinal dopamine to include modulation of bipolar cell receptive field surrounds. Additionally, our results suggest that D1 receptor pathways may be a mechanism for the light-adapted weakening of glycinergic surround inputs and the furthest wide-field GABAergic inputs to bipolar cells. However, remaining differences between light-adapted and D1 receptor-activated inhibition demonstrate that non-D1 receptor mechanisms are necessary to elicit the full effect of light adaptation on inhibitory surrounds.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number000129
JournalVisual neuroscience
StatePublished - 2019


  • Amacrine cell
  • Bipolar cell
  • GABA
  • Glycine
  • Luminance

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology
  • Sensory Systems


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