1. In the rods of fresh-water and some anadromous fishes, rhodopsin is replaced by the purple photolabile pigment porphyropsin. This participates in a retinal cycle identical in form with that of rhodopsin, but in which new carotenoids replace retinene and vitamin A.

2. Porphyropsin possesses a broad absorption maximum at 522 ± 2 mµ, and perhaps a minimum at about 430 mµ. The vitamin A-analogue, vitamin A2, possesses a maximum in chloroform at 355 mµ and yields with antimony trichloride a deep blue color due to a band at 696 mµ. The retinene-analogue, retinene2, absorbs maximally in chloroform at 405 mµ and possesses an antimony chloride maximum at 706 mµ.

3. Its non-diffusibility through a semi-permeable membrane, salting-out properties, and sensitivity to chemical denaturants and to heat, characterize porphyropsin as a conjugated carotenoid-protein.

4. The porphyropsin cycle may be formulated: porphyropsin

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retinene2-protein (2) vitamin A2-protein (3) porphyropsin. Isolation of the retina cuts this cycle at (3); denaturation procedures or extraction of porphyropsin into aqueous solution eliminate in addition (1) and (2).

5. The primary difference between the rhodopsin and porphyropsin systems appears to be the possession by the latter of an added ethylenic group in the polyene chain.

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