The Role of RdCVF in the Health of Cone Photorecetors by Dr. Erika Camacho, Arizona State University
Friday, April 21 at 1:00pm to 1:45pm
Mathematics Faculty Seminar
Abstract: Understanding the essential components and processes for co-existence of rods and cones is at the forefront of retinal research. The recent discovery on RdCVF’s mechanism and mode of action for enhancing cone survival brings us a step closer to unraveling key questions of coexistence and co-dependence of these neurons. In this work, we build from ecological and enzyme kinetic work on functional response kinetics and present a mathematical model that allows us to investigate the role of RdCVF and its contribution to glucose intake. Our model results and analysis predict a dual role of RdCVF for enhancing and repressing the healthy co-existence of the rods and cones. Bifurcation analysis show that maintaining RdCVF above a threshold value allows for co-existence. However, a significant increase above this value threatens the existence of rods as the cones become extremely efficient at uptaking glucose and begin to take most of it for themselves. By understanding the contributions of rods to cones survival via RdCVF in a non-diseased retina we hope to shed light on degenerative diseases such as Retinitis Pigmentosa.
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