Ellis R. Loew

Collaborator – vision in fishes and invertebrates

Cornell University
Department of Biomedical Sciences
Ithaca, NY, USA 14853
Tel. 1-607-253-3484
Email: erl1@cornell.edu


Ph.D. 1973 – Biology, University of California, Los Angeles
M.A. 1971 – Zoology, University of California, Los Angeles

Research interests

Retinal Electrophysiology
Evolution and ecology of Colour and ‘Polarized Light’ Vision
Predator/prey interactions in visual planktivorous fish
Physical optics of natural waters
Biochemistry and ecology of visual pigments
Computer modeling of visual processes using remote sensing techniques
Electro-optical instrumentation


Loew, E.R. (1973) Analysis of the visual response of the fly, Sarcophaga bullata, during pupal development. Documentia Ophthalmologica Proceedings II (H. Henkes J. Pearlman, eds.), pp. 281-292.

Loew, E.R. (1976) Light and photoreceptor degeneration in the Norway lobster, Nephrops norvegicus (L). Proceedings of the Royal Society of London. B. 193: 31-44.

Bowmaker, J.K., E.R. Loew and P.A. Liebman (1975) Variation in the lambda max of rhodopsin from individual frogs. Vision Research 15: 997-1003.

Loew, E.R. and H.J.A. Dartnall (1977) MSP measurements of rod and cone visual pigments in a retina that can be either vitamin A1- or vitamin A2-based. In: Research in Photobiology (A. Castellani, ed.). Plenum Press, New York, pp. 639-644.

Loew, E.R. and J.N. Lythgoe (1978) The ecology of cone pigments in teleost fishes. Vision Research 18: 715-722.

Sillman, A.J., D.A. Bolnick, A.E. Walter and E.R. Loew (1981) Microspectro photometry of the photoreceptors of paleognathous birds the emu and the tinamu. Journal of Comparative Physiology A. 144: 271-276.

Allen, D.M., E.R. Loew and W.N. McFarland (1982) Seasonal changes in the amount of visual pigment in the retinae of fish. Canadian Journal of Zoology 60: 281-287.

McFarland, W.N. and E.R. Loew (1983) Wave produced changes in underwater light and their relation to vision. Environmental Biology of Fishes 8: 173-184.

Lythgoe, J.N. and E.R. Loew (1985) The ecology of colour vision. Endeavour 9: 170-174.

Loew, E.R. and W.N. McFarland (1990). “The Underwater visual environment. In: “The Visual System of Fish” (R. Douglas M. Djamgoz, eds.) Chapman Hall, London pp. 1-44.

Sillman, A.J., Spanfelder, J., and E.R. Loew. (1990) The visual pigments of the sturgeon, Acipenser transmontanus. Can. J. Zoology 68, 1544-1551.

Gruber, S.H., E.R. Loew and W.N. McFarland (1990) Rod and cone pigments of the Atlantic guitarfish, Rhinobatos lentigenosus (Garman). Journal of Experimental Zoology 256(Supp. 5):85-87.

Loew, E.R. and C.M Wahl. (1991) A short-wavelength sensitive mechanism in juvenile yellow perch, Perca flavescens. Vision Res. 31:353-360.

Loew, E.R., W.N. McFarland, E.L. Mills and D. Hunter. (1993) A chromatic action spectrum for planktonic predation by juvenile yellow perch, Perca flavescens. Canadian Journal of Zoology 71:384-386.

Loew, E.R.. and A.J. Sillman. (1993). Age-related changes in the visual pigments of the white sturgeon (Acipenser transmontanus). Canadian Journal of Zoology 71:1552-1557.

Sillman, A.J.; S.J. Ronan and E.R. Loew. (1993) Scanning electron microscopy and microspectrophotometry of the photoreceptors of ictalurid catfishes. Journal of Comparative Physiology A, 173:801-807.

McFarland, W.N. and E.R. Loew. (1994) Ultraviolet visual pigments in marine fishes of the family Pomacentridae. Vision Research 34:1393-1396.

Sillman, A.J., M.E. Sorsky and E.R. Loew. (1995) The visual pigments of wild sturgeon (Acipenser transmontanus). Canadian Journal of Zoology 73:805-809.

Loew, E.R. (1995) Determinants of visual pigment spectral location and photoreceptor cell spectral sensitivity. In The Outer Retina (M.B.A. Djamgoz, S.N. Archer S. Vallerga, eds.) Chapman Hall, London, pp57-78.

Sillman, A.J., G.A. Letsinger, S. Patel, E.R. Loew and A.P. Klimley (1996). Visual pigments and photoreceptors in two species of shark, Triakis semifasciata and Mustelus henlei. Journal of Experimental Zoology 276:1-10.

Fleishman, L.J., M. Bowman, D. Saunders, W.E. Miller and E.R. Loew. (1997). The visual ecology of Puerto Rican anoline lizards: habitat and spectral sensitivity. Journal of Comparative Physiology A. 181:446-460.

Sillman, A.J., J.L Johnson and E.R. LOEW. (2001) Retinal photoreceptors and visual pigments in Boa constrictor imperator. J. Experimental Zool. 290:359-365.

LOEW, E.R. and V.I. Govardovskii. (2001) Photoreceptors and visual pigments in the red-eared turtle, Pseudemys scripta elegans. J. Exp. Biol. 18:753-757.

Britt, L., E.R. LOEW and W.N. McFarland. (2001). The visual pigments of pacific northwest larval marine fishes. J. Exp. Biol. 204:2581-2587.

LOEW, E.R. (2001) Electrical activity of the visual system: the ERG and the VER. In: Small Animal Ophthalmology Secrets” (R.C. Riis, ed). Hanley & Belfus, Philadelphia. Pp1-6.

LOEW, E.R. (2002) Color Vision in Animals. In: Small Animal Ophthalmology Secrets” (R.C. Riis, ed). Hanley & Belfus, Philadelphia. Pp7-11.

LOEW, E.R., W.N. McFarland and D. Margulies. (2002) Developmental changes in the visual pigments of the yellowfin tuna, Thunnus Albacares. Mar. Fresh. Behav. Physiol. 35:235-246.

Losey, G.S., W.N. McFarland, E.R. Loew, J.P. Zamzow, P.A. Nelson and N.J. Marshall. (2003) Visual biology of Hawaiian coral reef fishes. I. Ocular transmission and visual pigments. Copeia 2003:433-454.

Marshall, N.J., K. Jennings, W.N. McFarland, E.R. Loew and G.S. Losey. (2003). Visual biology of Hawaiian coral reef fishes. II. Colors of Hawaiian coral reef fish. Copeia 2003:455-466.

Marshall, N.J., K. Jennings, W.N. McFarland, E.R. Loew and G.S. Losey. (2003). Visual biology of Hawaiian coral reef fishes. III. Environmental light and an integrated approach to the ecology of reef fish vision. Copeia 2003:467-480.

Rowe, M.P., C.L. Baube, E.R. Loew, and J.B. Phillips. 2004. Optimal mechanisms for finding and selecting mates: how threespine stickleback (Gasterosteus aculeatus) should encode male throat colors. J. Comp. Physiol. A. 190(3):241-256.

Diau, GY, Loew, ER, Wijendran, V, Sarkadi-Nagy, E, Nathanielsz, PW, Brenna, JT. 2003. Docosahexaenoic and arachidonic acid influence on preterm baboon retinal composition and function. Investigative Ophthalmology & Visual Science. 44(10):4559-4566.

Siddiqi, A, Cronin, TW, Loew, ER, Vorobyev, M, Summers, K. 2004. Interspecific and intraspecific views of color signals in the strawberry poison frog Dendrobates pumilio. Journal of Experimental Biology. 207(14):2471-2485.

Boal, JG, Shashar, N, Grable, MM, Vaughan, KH, Loew, ER, Hanlon, RT. 2004. Behavioral evidence for intraspecific signaling with achromatic and polarized light by cuttlefish (Mollusca : Cephalopoda). Behaviour. 141:837-861.

Spady, TC, Seehausen, O, Loew, ER, Jordan, RC, Kocher, TD, Carleton, KL. 2005. Adaptive molecular evolution in the opsin genes of rapidly speciating cichlid species. Molecular Biology and Evolution. 22(6):1412-1422.

Bowmaker, JK, Loew, ER, Ott, M. 2005. The cone photoreceptors and visual pigments of chameleons. Journal of Comparative Physiology A-Neuroethology Sensory Neural and Behavioral Physiology. 191(10):925-932.

Sillman, AJ, Beach, AK, Dahlin, DA, Loew, ER. 2005. Photoreceptors and visual pigments in the retina of the fully anadromous green sturgeon (Acipenser medirostrus) and the potamodromous pallid sturgeon (Scaphirhynchus albus). Journal of Comparative Physiology A-Neuroethology Sensory Neural and Behavioral Physiology. 191(9):799-811.

Korner, KE, Schlupp, I, Plath, M, Loew, ER. 2006. Spectral sensitivity of mollies: comparing surface- and cave-dwelling Atlantic mollies, Poecilia mexicana. Journal of Fish Biology. 69(1):54-65.

Sillman, AJ, Ong, EK, Loew, ER. 2007. Spectral absorbance, structure, and population density of photoreceptors in the retina of the lake sturgeon (Acipenser fulvescens). Canadian Journal of Zoology. 85(4):584-587.

Beason, R.C. and E.R. Loew (2008). Visual pigment and oil droplet characteristics of the bobolink(Dolichonyx oryzivorus), a New World migratory bird. Vision Res. 48:1-8.

Loew, E.R. and C.M. Wahl. (2008). Photoreception. In: R.N. Finn & B.G. Kapoor (ed.) Fish Larval Physiology. Science Publishers, Enfield, NH. PP. 395-424.

Bowmaker J.K. and E.R. Loew (2008) Vision in fish. In: R.R.Hoy, G.M. Shepherd, A.I. Basbaum, A. Kaneko and G. Westheimer(eds). The Senses: A Comprehensive Reference Vol. 1. Elsevier, Oxford, UK. PP 53-76.

Gray, S.M., L.M. Dill, F.Y. Tantu, E.R. Loew, F. Herder and J.S. McKinnon. (2008) Environment-contingent sexual selection in a colour polymorphic fish. Proc. R. Soc. B. 10.1098/rspb.2008.0283

Carleton. K.L., T.C. Spady, J.T. Streelman, M.R. Kidd, W.N. McFarland and E.R. Loew. (2008). Visual sensitivities tuned by heterochromatic shifts in opsin gene expression. BMC Biology 6:22-36.

Young, J.D., N.D. Yan and E.R. Loew (2009). Examination of direct daytime predation by Coregonus artedi on Bythotrephes longimanus in Harp Lake, Ontario, Canada: No evidence for the refuge hypothesis. Canadian Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences 66:449-459.

Feller, K.D., S. Lagerholm, R. Clubwala, M.T. Silver, D. Haughey, J.M. Ryan, E.R. Loew, M.E. Deutschlander and K.L. Kenyon (2009). Characterization of photoreceptor cell types in the little brown bat Myotis lucifugus (Vespertilionidae). Comp. Biochem. Physiol. B. 154:412-418.

Solessio, E., G.A. Engbretson, D.A. Cameron, E.R. Loew, Y. Umino, R.B. Barlow and B.E. Knox. (2009). Light responses in vitamin A-deprived rods. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 50:4477- 4486.

Boscarino, B.T., L.G. Rudstam, E.R. Loew and E.L. Mills (2009). Predicting the vertical distribution of the opossum shrimp, Mysis relicta, in Lake Ontario: a test of laboratory-based light preferences. Canadian Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences 66:101-113.

Watson, C.T., K.P. Lubieniecki, E.Loew, W.S. Davidson and F. Breden. (2010). Genomic organization of duplicated short wave-sensitive and long wave-sensitive opsin genes in the green swordtail, Xiphophorus helleri. BMC Evolutionary Biology 10: Article 87.

Boscarino, B.T., L.G. Rudstam, J. Tirabassi, J. Janssen and E.R. Loew. (2010). Light effects on alewife-mysid interactions in Lake Ontario: A combined sensory physiology, behavioral and spatial approach. Limnol. Oceanography 55:2061-2072.

Taylor, S.M., E.R. Loew.,& M.S. Grace (2011) A rod-dominated visual system in elopomorph fishes (Elopomorpha: Teleostei). Environmental Biology of Fishes. 92: 513-523.

Speiser, D.I., E.R. Loew & S. Johnsen. 2011. Spectral sensitivity of the concave mirror eyes of scallops: potential influences of habitat, self-screening and longitudinal chromatic aberration. Journal of Experimental Biology 214: 422-431.

Taylor, S.M., E.R. Loew, M.S. Grace (2011). Developmental shifts in functional morphology of the retina in Atlantic tarpon, Megalops atlanticus (Elopomorpha: Teleostei) between four ecologically distinct life-history stages. Visual Neurosci. 28: 309-323.

Fleishman, L.J., E.R. Loew, M.J. Whiting. (2011). High sensitivity to short wavelengths in a lizard and implications for understanding the evolution of visual systems in lizards. Proc. Royal Soc. Biol. Sci. B. 278: 2891-2899.

Weadick, C.J., E.R. Loew, F.H. Rodd, B.S.W. Chang (2012). Visual Pigment Molecular Evolution in the Trinidadian Pike Cichlid (Crenicichla frenata): A Less Colorful World for Neotropical Cichlids?  Mol. Biol. Evol. 29:3045-3060.

Gumm, J.M., E.R. Loew, T.C. Mendelson. (2012). Differences in spectral sensitivity within and among species of darters (genus Etheostoma) . Vision Res. 55:19-23.

Moore, B.A., P. Baumhardt, M. Doppler, J. Randolet, B.F. Blackwell, L. Travis, E.R. Loew, E. Fernandez-Juricic. (2012) Oblique color vision in an open-habitat bird: spectral sensitivity, photoreceptor distribution and behavioral implications. J. Exp. Biol. 215:3442-3452.

Moore, B.A., J.M. Kamilar, S.P. Collin, O.R.P Bininda-Emonds, N.J. Dominy, M.I. Hall, C.P. Heesy, S. Johnsen, T.J. Lisney, E.R. Loew, G. Moritz, S.S. Navall,E. Warrant, K.E. Yopak, E. Fernandez-Juricic. (2012). A novel method for comparative analysis of retinal specialization traits from topographic maps. J. Vision 12:13.

Barton-Lamb, A.L., M. Martin-Flores, P.V. Scrivani, A.J. Bezuidenhout, E.R. Loew, H.N. Erb, J.W. Ludders. (2013). Evaluation of maxillary arterial blood flow in anesthetized cats with the mouth closed and open. Veterinary J. 196:325-331.

Wong, A.K., Ruhe, A.L., Robertson, K.R., Loew, E.R., Williams, D.C. and Neff, M.W., 2013. A de novo mutation in KIT causes white spotting in a subpopulation of German Shepherd dogs. Animal genetics, 44(3), pp.305-310.

Bedore, C.N., Loew, E.R., Frank, T.M., Hueter, R.E., McComb, D.M. and Kajiura, S.M., 2013. A physiological analysis of color vision in batoid elasmobranchs. Journal of Comparative Physiology A, 199(12), pp.1129-1141.

Archer, S., Djamgoz, M.B., Loew, E., Partridge, J.C. and Vallerga, S. eds., 2013. Adaptive mechanisms in the ecology of vision. Springer Science & Business Media.

Loew, E.R., 2014. Vision: two plus four equals six. Current Biology, 24(16), pp.R753-R755.

Hurtado-Gonzales, J.L., Loew, E.R. and Uy, J.A.C., 2014. Variation in the visual habitat may mediate the maintenance of color polymorphism in a poeciliid fish. PloS one, 9(7), p.e101497.

Dalton, B.E., Loew, E.R., Cronin, T.W. and Carleton, K.L., 2014. Spectral tuning by opsin coexpression in retinal regions that view different parts of the visual field. Proceedings of the Royal Society of London B: Biological Sciences, 281(1797), p.20141980.

Taylor, S.M., Loew, E.R. and Grace, M.S., 2015. Ontogenic retinal changes in three ecologically distinct elopomorph fishes (Elopomorpha: Teleostei) correlate with light environment and behavior. Visual neuroscience, 32, p.E005.

Simões, B.F., Sampaio, F.L., Jared, C., Antoniazzi, M.M., Loew, E.R., Bowmaker, J.K., Rodriguez, A., Hart, N.S., Hunt, D.M., Partridge, J.C. and Gower, D.J., 2015. Visual system evolution and the nature of the ancestral snake. Journal of evolutionary biology, 28(7), pp.1309-1320.

Martin, M., Le Galliard, J.F., Meylan, S. and Loew, E.R., 2015. The importance of ultraviolet and near-infrared sensitivity for visual discrimination in two species of lacertid lizards. Journal of Experimental Biology, 218(3), pp.458-465.

Zhou, M., Loew, E.R. and Fuller, R.C., 2015. Sexually asymmetric colour-based species discrimination in orangethroat darters. Animal Behaviour, 106, pp.171-179.

Marshall, J., Carleton, K.L. and Cronin, T., 2015. Colour vision in marine organisms. Current opinion in neurobiology, 34, pp.86-94.

Simões, B.F., Sampaio, F.L., Loew, E.R., Sanders, K.L., Fisher, R.N., Hart, N.S., Hunt, D.M., Partridge, J.C. and Gower, D.J., 2016, January. Multiple rod–cone and cone–rod photoreceptor transmutations in snakes: evidence from visual opsin gene expression. In Proc. R. Soc. B (Vol. 283, No. 1823, p. 20152624). The Royal Society.

Schott, R.K., Müller, J., Yang, C.G., Bhattacharyya, N., Chan, N., Xu, M., Morrow, J.M., Ghenu, A.H., Loew, E.R., Tropepe, V. and Chang, B.S., 2016. Evolutionary transformation of rod photoreceptors in the all-cone retina of a diurnal garter snake. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 113(2), pp.356-361.

Gruber, D.F., Loew, E.R., Deheyn, D.D., Akkaynak, D., Gaffney, J.P., Smith, W.L., Davis, M.P., Stern, J.H., Pieribone, V.A. and Sparks, J.S., 2016. Biofluorescence in Catsharks (Scyliorhinidae): Fundamental Description and Relevance for Elasmobranch Visual Ecology. Scientific reports, 6.

Last updated: June 13, 2017