OPN3 Membrane Protein Introduction

Introduction of OPN3

Opsin-3, also known as encephalopsin or panopsin, is a protein that is encoded by the OPN3 gene in humans. Any changes of this gene will bring about multiple transcript variants encoding different protein isoforms, which will in further cause diseases affecting the vision function of human's eyes.

Basic Information of OPN3
Protein Name Opsin-3
Gene Name OPN3
Aliases Encephalopsin, Panopsin
Organism Homo sapiens (Human)
UniProt ID Q9H1Y3
Transmembrane Times 7
Length (aa) 402

Function of OPN3 Membrane Protein

Opsins are members of the G protein-coupled receptor superfamily. Besides the visual opsins, mammals possess several photoreceptive non-visual opsins that are widely existed in tissues outside the eye. The OPN3 gene has a high expression in brain and testis, while it is lowly expressed in some tissues/organs, including liver, placenta, heart, lung, skeletal muscle, kidney, and pancreas. The gene is also expressed in the skin, as well as in the retina. The protein has the canonical features of a photoreceptive opsin protein.

OPN3 Membrane Protein Introduction Fig.1 Opsin-3 affects blue light-induced opsin3-mediated MITF activation. (Subba, 2018)

Application of OPN3 Membrane Protein in Literature

  1. Regazzetti C., et al. Melanocytes sense blue light and regulate pigmentation through Opsin-3. J Invest Dermatol. 2018, 138(1):171-178. PubMed ID: 28842328

    Authors in this study suggest that the combination of OPN3 and the multimeric tyrosinase/tyrosinase-related protein appears as new therapeutic targets for regulating melanogenesis and OPN3 is also important to protect dark skins against blue light in physiological conditions/pigmentary disorders.

  2. Koyanagi M., et al. Homologs of vertebrate Opn3 potentially serve as a light sensor in nonphotoreceptive tissue. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2013, 110(13):4998-5003. PubMed ID: 23479626

    This article suggests that Opn3 might be the photoreceptors in various tissues. Moreover, these Opn3s, particularly the mosquito homolog, could provide a promising optogenetic tool for regulating cAMP-related G protein-coupled receptor signaling.

  3. Nissilä J., Encephalopsin (OPN3) protein abundance in the adult mouse brain. J Comp Physiol A Neuroethol Sens Neural Behav Physiol. 2012, 198(11):833-9. PubMed ID: 22991144

    This study suggests that encephalopsin is expressed at the protein level in different brain areas of the mouse. It proves that encephalopsin plays a role in non-visual photic processes.

  4. Halford S., et al. Assignment of panopsin (OPN3) to human chromosome band 1q43 by in situ hybridization and somatic cell hybrids. Cytogenet Cell Genet. 2001, 95(3-4):234-5. PubMed ID: 12063405

    Authors in this study used in situ hybridization and somatic cell hybrids to assign panopsin (OPN3) to human chromosome band 1q43.

  5. Sugihara T., et al. Absorption characteristics of vertebrate non-visual Opsin, Opn3. PLoS One. 2016, 11(8):e0161215. PubMed ID: 27532629

    This article suggests that vertebrate Opn3s forms blue-sensitive G protein-coupled pigments. It also shows that combination, cAMP-dependent luciferase reporter assay and chimeric opsins possessing the third intracellular loop of jellyfish opsin, is an efficient approach to estimate absorption spectra of opsins with unknown signaling cascades or those processes whose absorption spectra are difficult to obtain.

OPN3 Preparation Options

We keep in a leading position of membrane protein studies over the past few years. Based on our versatile Magic™ membrane protein production platform, we can provide a series of advanced membrane protein preparation services in reconstitution forms as well as multiple active formats for worldwide customers. Aided by our versatile Magic™ anti-membrane protein antibody discovery platform, we also provide customized anti-OPN3 antibody development services.

During the past years, Creative Biolabs has successfully generated many functional membrane proteins for our global customers. It's our responsibility to boost the development of our clients' programs with our experienced service. For more details, please feel free to contact us.


  1. Subba S.R. (2018). Opsin3-A link to visible light-induced skin pigmentation. Journal of Investigative Dermatology. 138(1), 13-15.

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