Gene Symbol: opn4a
Description: opsin 4a (melanopsin)
Alias: opn4, opn4d, melanopsin-A, mammalian-like melanopsin, mammalian-like melanopsin-1, melanopsin opn4m1, melanopsin-M, opn4m1, opsin 4 (melanopsin), opsin-4-A, opsin-4M
Species: zebrafish

Top Publications

  1. Fernandes A, Fero K, Arrenberg A, Bergeron S, Driever W, Burgess H. Deep brain photoreceptors control light-seeking behavior in zebrafish larvae. Curr Biol. 2012;22:2042-7 pubmed publisher
    ..Neurons in this region express several photoreceptive molecules, but expression of the melanopsin opn4a is selectively lost in otpa mutants, suggesting that opn4a mediates dark photokinesis...
  2. Bellingham J, Chaurasia S, Melyan Z, Liu C, Cameron M, Tarttelin E, et al. Evolution of melanopsin photoreceptors: discovery and characterization of a new melanopsin in nonmammalian vertebrates. PLoS Biol. 2006;4:e254 pubmed
    In mammals, the melanopsin gene (Opn4) encodes a sensory photopigment that underpins newly discovered inner retinal photoreceptors...
  3. Davies W, Zheng L, Hughes S, Tamai T, Turton M, Halford S, et al. Functional diversity of melanopsins and their global expression in the teleost retina. Cell Mol Life Sci. 2011;68:4115-32 pubmed publisher
    Melanopsin (OPN4) is an opsin photopigment that, in mammals, confers photosensitivity to retinal ganglion cells and regulates circadian entrainment and pupil constriction...
  4. Matos Cruz V, Blasic J, Nickle B, Robinson P, Hattar S, Halpern M. Unexpected diversity and photoperiod dependence of the zebrafish melanopsin system. PLoS ONE. 2011;6:e25111 pubmed publisher
    ..While mammals have a single melanopsin gene (opn4), zebrafish show remarkable diversity with two opn4x-related and three opn4-related genes expressed in distinct ..
  5. Blasic J, Matos Cruz V, Ujla D, Cameron E, Hattar S, Halpern M, et al. Identification of critical phosphorylation sites on the carboxy tail of melanopsin. Biochemistry. 2014;53:2644-9 pubmed publisher
    ..These results suggest that variation in phosphorylation sites provides flexibility in the duration and kinetics of melanopsin-mediated light responses...
  6. Ramos B, Moraes M, Poletini M, Lima L, Castrucci A. From blue light to clock genes in zebrafish ZEM-2S cells. PLoS ONE. 2014;9:e106252 pubmed publisher
    ..Our results suggest that melanopsin may be important in mediating the photoresponse in Danio rerio ZEM-2S cells, and provide new insights about the modulation of clock genes in peripheral clocks. ..
  7. Horstick E, Bayleyen Y, Sinclair J, Burgess H. Search strategy is regulated by somatostatin signaling and deep brain photoreceptors in zebrafish. BMC Biol. 2017;15:4 pubmed publisher
    ..manifest impaired transition to roaming search, a phenotype which is recapitulated by loss of the non-visual opsin opn4a and somatostatin signaling...
  8. Shiraki T, Kojima D, Fukada Y. Light-induced body color change in developing zebrafish. Photochem Photobiol Sci. 2010;9:1498-504 pubmed publisher
    ..We also discussed the putative role(s) of opsin-type photoreceptive molecules in the light-induced body color change of the larval zebrafish. ..
  9. Morrow J, Lazic S, Chang B. A novel rhodopsin-like gene expressed in zebrafish retina. Vis Neurosci. 2011;28:325-35 pubmed publisher
    ..The discovery of a new previously uncharacterized opsin gene in zebrafish retina is surprising given its status as a model system for studies of vertebrate vision and visual development. ..

More Information


  1. Sousa J, Magalhães Marques K, da Silveira Cruz Machado S, Moraes M, Castrucci A. Dexamethasone Modulates Nonvisual Opsins, Glucocorticoid Receptor, and Clock Genes in Danio rerio ZEM-2S Cells. Biomed Res Int. 2017;2017:8459385 pubmed publisher
    Here we report, for the first time, the differential cellular distribution of two melanopsins (Opn4m1 and Opn4m2) and the effects of GR agonist, dexamethasone, on the expression of these opsins and clock genes, in the photosensitive D...