Doctor Morven Cameron

Doctor Morven Cameron

Senior Lecturer,
School of Medicine


Dr. Morven Cameron completed ber PhD on circadian rhythms in the mammalian retina in the lab of Prof. Rob Lucas at Manchester University before moving to Australia in 2009. She then briefly worked on cultured peripheral neurons in the lab of Prof. Janet Keast where she learned patch clamp electrophysiology. In 2010, she returned to work on the retina for Bionic Vision Australia, assessing the responses of inner nuclear retinal cells to electrical stimulation. After being awarded the ARC DECRA in 2013, Morven has established herself as an independent researcher at Western Sydney, focusing on the mammalian retinal physiology.

This information has been contributed by Doctor Cameron.


  • Phd University of Manchester
  • B Sc University of Manchester


  • Retinal Physiology
  • Circadian Rhythms
  • Dopamine
  • Gap Junctions
  • Neuroscience

Organisational Unit (School / Division)

  • School of Medicine


Phone: (02) 4620 3739

Location: 30.2.28

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Previous Teaching Areas

  • 400861 Foundations of Medicine 1, 2018
  • 400862 Foundations of Medicine 2, 2018


Chapters in Books

  • Buskila, Y., Bellot-Saez, A., Kekesi, O., Cameron, M. and Morley, J. (2020), 'Extending the life span of acute neuronal tissue for imaging and electrophysiological studies', Basic Neurobiology Techniques, Humana Press 9781493999439.
  • Cameron, M., Allen, A. and Lucas, R. (2014), 'Retinal circadian rhythms in mammals revealed using electroretinography', The Retina and Circadian Rhythms, Springer 9781461496120.

Journal Articles

  • Cameron, M., Morley, J. and Perez-Fernandez, V. (2020), 'Seeing the light : different photoreceptor classes work together to drive adaptation in the mammalian retina', Current Opinion in Physiology, vol 16 , pp 43 - 49.
  • Perez-Fernandez, V., Milosavljevic, N., Allen, A., Vessey, K., Jobling, A., Fletcher, E., Breen, P., Morley, J. and Cameron, M. (2019), 'Rod photoreceptor activation alone defines the release of dopamine in the retina', Current Biology, vol 29, no 5 , pp 763 - 774.
  • Cameron, M., Kekesi, O., Morley, J., Bellot Saez, A., Kueh, S., Breen, P., van Schaik, A., Tapson, J. and Buskila, Y. (2017), 'Prolonged incubation of acute neuronal tissue for electrophysiology and calcium-imaging', Journal of Visualized Experiments, vol 120 .
  • Cameron, M., Abed, A., Buskila, Y., Dokos, S., Lovell, N. and Morley, J. (2017), 'Differential effect of brief electrical stimulation on voltage-gated potassium channels', Journal of Neurophysiology, vol 117, no 5 , pp 2014 - 2024.
  • Perez Fernandez, V., Harman, D., Morley, J. and Cameron, M. (2017), 'Optimized method to quantify dopamine turnover in the mammalian retina', Analytical Chemistry, vol 89, no 22 , pp 12276 - 12283.
  • Cameron, M., Kekesi, O., Morley, J., Tapson, J., Breen, P., van Schaik, A. and Buskila, Y. (2016), 'Calcium imaging of AM dyes following prolonged incubation in acute neuronal tissue', PLoS One, vol 11, no 5 , pp 1 - 13.
  • Cameron, M., Suaning, G., Lovell, N. and Morley, J. (2013), 'Electrical stimulation of inner retinal neurons in wild-type and retinally degenerate (rd/rd) mice', PLoS One, vol 8, no 7 .
  • Habib, A., Cameron, M., Suaning, G., Lovell, N. and Morley, J. (2013), 'Spatially restricted electrical activation of retinal ganglion cells in the rabbit retina by hexapolar electrode return configuration', Journal of Neural Engineering, vol 10, no 3 , pp 1 - 8.
  • Lall, G., Revell, V., Momiji, H., EnezAl i, J., Altimus, C., Guler, A., Aguilar, C., Cameron, M., Allender, S., Hankins, M. and Lucas, R. (2010), 'Distinct contributions of rod, cone, and melanopsin photoreceptors to encoding irradiance', Neuron, vol 66, no 3 , pp 417 - 428.
  • Allen, A., Cameron, M., Brown, T., Vugler, A. and Lucas, R. (2010), 'Visual responses in mice lacking critical components of all known retinal phototransduction cascades', PLoS One, vol 5, no 11 .
  • Cameron, M., Pozdeyev, N., Vulger, A., Cooper, H., Iuvone, P. and Lucas, R. (2009), 'Light regulation of retinal dopamine that is independent of melanopsin phototransduction', European Journal of Neuroscience, vol 29, no 4 , pp 761 - 767.
  • Cameron, M. and Lucas, R. (2009), 'Influence of the rod photoresponse on light adaptation and circadian rhythmicity in the cone ERG', Molecular vision, vol 15, no 0 , pp 2209 - 2216.
  • Cameron, M., Barnard, A., Hut, R., Bonnefont, X., Van Der Horst, G., Hankins, M. and Lucas, R. (2008), 'Electroretinography of wild-type and cry mutant mice reveals circadian tuning of photopic and mesopic retinal responses', Journal of Biological Rhythms, vol 23, no 6 , pp 489 - 501.
  • Bellingham, J., Chaurasia, S., Melyan, Z., Liu, C., Cameron, M., Tarttelin, E., Luvone, P., Hankins, M., Tosini, G. and Lucas, R. (2006), 'Evolution of melanopsin photoreceptors: Discovery and characterization of a new melanopsin in nonmammalian vertebrates', PLoS Biology, vol 4, no 8 , pp 1334 - 1343.

Conference Papers

  • Muralidharan, M., Guo, T., Shivdasani, M., Tsai, D., Fried, S., Cameron, M., Morley, J., Dokos, S. and Lovell, N. (2020), 'Towards controlling functionally-distinct retinal ganglion cells in degenerate retina', IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society. Annual Conference, Virtual.
  • Habib, A., Cameron, M., Suaning, G., Lovell, N. and Morley, J. (2012), 'Efficacy of the hexpolar configuration in localizing the activation of retinal ganglion cells under electrical stimulation', IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society. Conference, San Diego, California.

Dr. Cameron's research focuses on connectivity in the retina. Retinal circuits can be quickly and reversibly altered by light, circadian phase and endogenous neuromodulators. Dr Cameron investigate fundamental mechanisms that alter connectivity of the retina to optimise it for the presenting light conditions, be that dim starlight or bright sunshine. Her lab uses patch clamp electrophysiology, optical imaging, and photostimulation to assess the physiology of these retinal circuits both in vitro and in vivo.

PhD/Masters Project(s) offered:

Project title: Influence of melanopsin-containing ganglion cell photoreceptors on the physiology of the mammalian retina

The neural network of the mammalian retina is one of the most studied within the central nervous system. However, surprises are still common, with a third type of photoreceptor discovered in recent years. Melanopsin containing ganglion cells (mRGCs) are located on the opposite side of the retina from the classical rod and cone photoreceptors, and play a role in a number of sub-conscious functions like pupil light contraction, entrainment of biological clocks to the light-dark cycle and as well as contributing to aspects of conscious visual perception. Additionally, mRGCs are thought to be involved with many aspects of local retinal physiology, but this research area is in its infancy. This project will use cutting-edge chemogenetic tools to assess the impact of mRGC activation on retinal function. This will be assessed using a variety of methods in transgenic mice, ranging from in vivo electroretinographic recordings, to light-induced dopamine release. Techniques involved will be in vitro electrophysiology, in vivo electroretinogram, immunohistochemistry and UHPLC-MS/MS quantification of dopamine. 

Project title: Rod and cone interactions in the mouse electroretinogram

The mammalian retina functions over a very wide range of light intensities, from dim starlight to bright Australian sunlight. It does this by using two main photoreceptive systems: rods for dim light intensities, and cones for bright light intensities. However, these two systems are intrinsically linked within the circuitry of the retina and can influence the function of one another. This project will investigate the interaction between rod and cone neural pathways by measuring the mouse electroretinogram in a variety of transgenic mouse models. Fundamental insights into the function of rod and cone systems will be analysed including temporal properties, spectral sensitivities and light adaptation. The main technique involved will be electroretinogram but immunohistochemistry and single-cell electrophysiology will complement this technique.

No technical experience is necessary as full training will be given, however candidates must have an interest in neuroscience/retinal biology and a life sciences/medical background.

This information has been contributed by Doctor Cameron.

Current Projects

Title: Neuroscience Research Into Ageing - PhD Scholarships
  • The Ainsworth Foundation
Western Researchers: Tara Roberts, Morven Cameron, Ritesh Raju, Vincent Ho and Erika Gyengesi
Years: 2021-10-01 - 2025-12-31
ID: P00027512
Title: Development and validation of early diagnostic test screens for dementia
  • The Ainsworth Foundation
Western Researchers: Mourad Tayebi, David Mahns, Morven Cameron and Paul Hurley
Years: 2021-07-01 - 2025-06-30
ID: P00027520

Previous Projects

Title: Modulation of gap-junction coupling in the mammalian retina
  • Australian Research Council (ACRG)
Western Researchers: Morven Cameron
Years: 2013-09-30 - 2016-10-31
ID: P00020951
Title: Defining the molecular pathways regulated by endogenous BEST1 in Best disease
  • The International Retinal Research Foundation, Inc.
Western Researchers: Michael O'Connor, Morven Cameron, John Morley and Jens Coorssen
Years: 2016-01-01 - 2018-08-01
ID: P00023002


Doctor Cameron is available to be a principal supervisor for doctoral projects

Current Supervision

Thesis Title: Influence of Melanopsin Phototransduction on Retinal Psysiology
Field of Research:
Thesis Title: Defining the molecular pathways that link macular degeneration symptoms to the regulation of Cl- and Ca2+ by the BEST1 protein in normal and diseased human retinal cells.
Field of Research:

Previous Supervision

Thesis Title: Dopamine Release and Function in the Mammalian Retina
Field of Research:
Thesis Title: Influence of ipRGC activation on Retinal Physiology
Field of Research:
Thesis Title: Light inputs to dopaminergic amacrine cells of the mammalian retina
Field of Research: Biochemistry And Cell Biology
Thesis Title: Retinal Dysfunction as an Early Indicator of Neurological Disease
Field of Research:
Thesis Title: Early Biomarkers of Diabetic Retinopathy
Field of Research:
Thesis Title: Investigating the Role of BEST1 Protein in Best Vitelliform Macular Dystrophy using a Novel, Disease-specific Human Embryonic Stem Cell Line
Field of Research: Other Health; General Medicine; Optical Science, N.e.c.
Thesis Title: Astrocytic Modulation of Neuronal Network Oscillations.
Field of Research: Biological Sciences; Medical Studies


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