Dark-adapted retinal cones of goldfish were measured microspectrophotometrically. The three types of spectra so obtained were subjected to a new method of data analysis. In order of types blue (B), green (G), and red (R), the best estimates for lambdamax were 453, 533, and 620 nm; for main band half width, 6,700, 4,700, and 3,900 cm-1. The extinction spectra of 11-cis 3,4-dehydroretinal and those of the three goldfish pigments were progressively fitted with Gaussian curves starting at the low-energy end of their spectra. The sum of the oscillator strengths of the first three Gaussian components throughout the four spectra were found to have nearly equal magnitudes. Functional relationships that connect the Gaussian parameters were obtained by curve-fitting, enabling partial absorption spectra to be generated for any lambdamax. The generated curves predicted the half width and peak extinction of porphyropsin-type absorption spectra more accurately than previously existing nomograms or hypothesis. The epsilonmax values thus obtained were 28,500, 32,000, and 35,700 liter/mole cm for the B-, G-, and R-type goldfish pigments; these were found to be consistent with the experimental determinations of +/- 10% estimated accuracy.

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