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Sample records for human circadian timing

  1. Plasticity of the Intrinsic Period of the Human Circadian Timing System

    PubMed Central

    Scheer, Frank A.J.L.; Wright, Kenneth P.; Kronauer, Richard E.; Czeisler, Charles A.

    2007-01-01

    Human expeditions to Mars will require adaptation to the 24.65-h Martian solar day-night cycle (sol), which is outside the range of entrainment of the human circadian pacemaker under lighting intensities to which astronauts are typically exposed. Failure to entrain the circadian time-keeping system to the desired rest-activity cycle disturbs sleep and impairs cognitive function. Furthermore, differences between the intrinsic circadian period and Earth's 24-h light-dark cycle underlie human circadian rhythm sleep disorders, such as advanced sleep phase disorder and non-24-hour sleep-wake disorders. Therefore, first, we tested whether exposure to a model-based lighting regimen would entrain the human circadian pacemaker at a normal phase angle to the 24.65-h Martian sol and to the 23.5-h day length often required of astronauts during short duration space exploration. Second, we tested here whether such prior entrainment to non-24-h light-dark cycles would lead to subsequent modification of the intrinsic period of the human circadian timing system. Here we show that exposure to moderately bright light (∼450 lux; ∼1.2 W/m2) for the second or first half of the scheduled wake episode is effective for entraining individuals to the 24.65-h Martian sol and a 23.5-h day length, respectively. Estimations of the circadian periods of plasma melatonin, plasma cortisol, and core body temperature rhythms collected under forced desynchrony protocols revealed that the intrinsic circadian period of the human circadian pacemaker was significantly longer following entrainment to the Martian sol as compared to following entrainment to the 23.5-h day. The latter finding of after-effects of entrainment reveals for the first time plasticity of the period of the human circadian timing system. Both findings have important implications for the treatment of circadian rhythm sleep disorders and human space exploration. PMID:17684566

  2. Sex difference in the near-24-hour intrinsic period of the human circadian timing system

    PubMed Central

    Duffy, Jeanne F.; Cain, Sean W.; Chang, Anne-Marie; Phillips, Andrew J. K.; Münch, Mirjam Y.; Gronfier, Claude; Wyatt, James K.; Dijk, Derk-Jan; Czeisler, Charles A.

    2011-01-01

    The circadian rhythms of melatonin and body temperature are set to an earlier hour in women than in men, even when the women and men maintain nearly identical and consistent bedtimes and wake times. Moreover, women tend to wake up earlier than men and exhibit a greater preference for morning activities than men. Although the neurobiological mechanism underlying this sex difference in circadian alignment is unknown, multiple studies in nonhuman animals have demonstrated a sex difference in circadian period that could account for such a difference in circadian alignment between women and men. Whether a sex difference in intrinsic circadian period in humans underlies the difference in circadian alignment between men and women is unknown. We analyzed precise estimates of intrinsic circadian period collected from 157 individuals (52 women, 105 men; aged 18–74 y) studied in a month-long inpatient protocol designed to minimize confounding influences on circadian period estimation. Overall, the average intrinsic period of the melatonin and temperature rhythms in this population was very close to 24 h [24.15 ± 0.2 h (24 h 9 min ± 12 min)]. We further found that the intrinsic circadian period was significantly shorter in women [24.09 ± 0.2 h (24 h 5 min ± 12 min)] than in men [24.19 ± 0.2 h (24 h 11 min ± 12 min); P < 0.01] and that a significantly greater proportion of women have intrinsic circadian periods shorter than 24.0 h (35% vs. 14%; P < 0.01). The shorter average intrinsic circadian period observed in women may have implications for understanding sex differences in habitual sleep duration and insomnia prevalence. PMID:21536890

  3. Circadian Variation of the Human Metabolome Captured by Real-Time Breath Analysis

    PubMed Central

    Martinez-Lozano Sinues, Pablo; Tarokh, Leila; Li, Xue; Kohler, Malcolm; Brown, Steven A.; Zenobi, Renato; Dallmann, Robert

    2014-01-01

    Circadian clocks play a significant role in the correct timing of physiological metabolism, and clock disruption might lead to pathological changes of metabolism. One interesting method to assess the current state of metabolism is metabolomics. Metabolomics tries to capture the entirety of small molecules, i.e. the building blocks of metabolism, in a given matrix, such as blood, saliva or urine. Using mass spectrometric approaches we and others have shown that a significant portion of the human metabolome in saliva and blood exhibits circadian modulation; independent of food intake or sleep/wake rhythms. Recent advances in mass spectrometry techniques have introduced completely non-invasive breathprinting; a method to instantaneously assess small metabolites in human breath. In this proof-of-principle study, we extend these findings about the impact of circadian clocks on metabolomics to exhaled breath. As previously established, our method allows for real-time analysis of a rich matrix during frequent non-invasive sampling. We sampled the breath of three healthy, non-smoking human volunteers in hourly intervals for 24 hours during total sleep deprivation, and found 111 features in the breath of all individuals, 36–49% of which showed significant circadian variation in at least one individual. Our data suggest that real-time mass spectrometric "breathprinting" has high potential to become a useful tool to understand circadian metabolism, and develop new biomarkers to easily and in real-time assess circadian clock phase and function in experimental and clinical settings. PMID:25545545

  4. Combination of Light and Melatonin Time Cues for Phase Advancing the Human Circadian Clock

    PubMed Central

    Burke, Tina M.; Markwald, Rachel R.; Chinoy, Evan D.; Snider, Jesse A.; Bessman, Sara C.; Jung, Christopher M.; Wright, Kenneth P.

    2013-01-01

    Study Objectives: Photic and non-photic stimuli have been shown to shift the phase of the human circadian clock. We examined how photic and non-photic time cues may be combined by the human circadian system by assessing the phase advancing effects of one evening dose of exogenous melatonin, alone and in combination with one session of morning bright light exposure. Design: Randomized placebo-controlled double-blind circadian protocol. The effects of four conditions, dim light (∼1.9 lux, ∼0.6 Watts/m2)-placebo, dim light-melatonin (5 mg), bright light (∼3000 lux, ∼7 Watts/m2)-placebo, and bright light-melatonin on circadian phase was assessed by the change in the salivary dim light melatonin onset (DLMO) prior to and following treatment under constant routine conditions. Melatonin or placebo was administered 5.75 h prior to habitual bedtime and 3 h of bright light exposure started 1 h prior to habitual wake time. Setting: Sleep and chronobiology laboratory environment free of time cues. Participants: Thirty-six healthy participants (18 females) aged 22 ± 4 y (mean ± SD). Results: Morning bright light combined with early evening exogenous melatonin induced a greater phase advance of the DLMO than either treatment alone. Bright light alone and melatonin alone induced similar phase advances. Conclusion: Information from light and melatonin appear to be combined by the human circadian clock. The ability to combine circadian time cues has important implications for understanding fundamental physiological principles of the human circadian timing system. Knowledge of such principles is important for designing effective countermeasures for phase-shifting the human circadian clock to adapt to jet lag, shift work, and for designing effective treatments for circadian sleep-wakefulness disorders. Citation: Burke TM; Markwald RR; Chinoy ED; Snider JA; Bessman SC; Jung CM; Wright Jr KP. Combination of light and melatonin time cues for phase advancing the human circadian

  5. Phase-shifting human circadian rhythms: influence of sleep timing, social contact and light exposure

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Duffy, J. F.; Kronauer, R. E.; Czeisler, C. A.

    1996-01-01

    1. Both the timing of behavioural events (activity, sleep and social interactions) and the environmental light-dark cycle have been reported to contribute to entrainment of human circadian rhythms to the 24 h day. Yet, the relative contribution of those putative behavioural synchronizers to that of light exposure remains unclear. 2. To investigate this, we inverted the schedule of rest, sedentary activity and social contact of thirty-two young men either with or without exposure to bright light. 3. On this inverted schedule, the endogenous component of the core temperature rhythm of subjects who were exposed to bright light showed a significant phase shift, demonstrating that they were adapting to the new schedule. In contrast, the core temperature rhythm of subjects who were not exposed to bright light moved on average 0.2 h later per day and after 10 days had not significantly adapted to the new schedule. 4. The direction of phase shift in the groups exposed to bright light was dependent on the time of bright light exposure, while control subjects drifted to a later hour regardless of the timing of their schedule of sleep timing, social contact and meals. 5. These results support the concept that the light-dark cycle is the most important synchronizer of the human circadian system. They suggest that inversion of the sleep-wake, rest-activity and social contact cycles provides relatively minimal drive for resetting the human circadian pacemaker. 6. These data indicate that interventions designed to phase shift human circadian rhythms for adjustment to time zone changes or altered work schedules should focus on properly timed light exposure.

  6. Nutrigenetics and Nutrimiromics of the Circadian System: The Time for Human Health

    PubMed Central

    Micó, Víctor; Díez-Ricote, Laura; Daimiel, Lidia

    2016-01-01

    Even though the rhythmic oscillations of life have long been known, the precise molecular mechanisms of the biological clock are only recently being explored. Circadian rhythms are found in virtually all organisms and affect our lives. Thus, it is not surprising that the correct running of this clock is essential for cellular functions and health. The circadian system is composed of an intricate network of genes interwined in an intrincated transcriptional/translational feedback loop. The precise oscillation of this clock is controlled by the circadian genes that, in turn, regulate the circadian oscillations of many cellular pathways. Consequently, variations in these genes have been associated with human diseases and metabolic disorders. From a nutrigenetics point of view, some of these variations modify the individual response to the diet and interact with nutrients to modulate such response. This circadian feedback loop is also epigenetically modulated. Among the epigenetic mechanisms that control circadian rhythms, microRNAs are the least studied ones. In this paper, we review the variants of circadian-related genes associated to human disease and nutritional response and discuss the current knowledge about circadian microRNAs. Accumulated evidence on the genetics and epigenetics of the circadian system points to important implications of chronotherapy in the clinical practice, not only in terms of pharmacotherapy, but also for dietary interventions. However, interventional studies (especially nutritional trials) that include chronotherapy are scarce. Given the importance of chronobiology in human health such studies are warranted in the near future. PMID:26927084

  7. Circadian clocks, feeding time, and metabolic homeostasis

    PubMed Central

    Paschos, Georgios K.

    2015-01-01

    Metabolic processes exhibit diurnal variation from cyanobacteria to humans. The circadian clock is thought to have evolved as a time keeping system for the cell to optimize the timing of metabolic events according to physiological needs and environmental conditions. Circadian rhythms temporally separate incompatible cellular processes and optimize cellular and organismal fitness. A modern 24 h lifestyle can run at odds with the circadian rhythm dictated by our molecular clocks and create desynchrony between internal and external timing. It has been suggested that this desynchrony compromises metabolic homeostasis and may promote the development of obesity (Morris et al., 2012). Here we review the evidence supporting the association between circadian misalignment and metabolic homeostasis and discuss the role of feeding time. PMID:26082718

  8. Circadian and wakefulness-sleep modulation of cognition in humans.

    PubMed

    Wright, Kenneth P; Lowry, Christopher A; Lebourgeois, Monique K

    2012-01-01

    Cognitive and affective processes vary over the course of the 24 h day. Time of day dependent changes in human cognition are modulated by an internal circadian timekeeping system with a near-24 h period. The human circadian timekeeping system interacts with sleep-wakefulness regulatory processes to modulate brain arousal, neurocognitive and affective function. Brain arousal is regulated by ascending brain stem, basal forebrain (BF) and hypothalamic arousal systems and inhibition or disruption of these systems reduces brain arousal, impairs cognition, and promotes sleep. The internal circadian timekeeping system modulates cognition and affective function by projections from the master circadian clock, located in the hypothalamic suprachiasmatic nuclei (SCN), to arousal and sleep systems and via clock gene oscillations in brain tissues. Understanding the basic principles of circadian and wakefulness-sleep physiology can help to recognize how the circadian system modulates human cognition and influences learning, memory and emotion. Developmental changes in sleep and circadian processes and circadian misalignment in circadian rhythm sleep disorders have important implications for learning, memory and emotion. Overall, when wakefulness occurs at appropriate internal biological times, circadian clockwork benefits human cognitive and emotion function throughout the lifespan. Yet, when wakefulness occurs at inappropriate biological times because of environmental pressures (e.g., early school start times, long work hours that include work at night, shift work, jet lag) or because of circadian rhythm sleep disorders, the resulting misalignment between circadian and wakefulness-sleep physiology leads to impaired cognitive performance, learning, emotion, and safety. PMID:22529774

  9. Circadian and wakefulness-sleep modulation of cognition in humans

    PubMed Central

    Wright, Kenneth P.; Lowry, Christopher A.; LeBourgeois, Monique K.

    2012-01-01

    Cognitive and affective processes vary over the course of the 24 h day. Time of day dependent changes in human cognition are modulated by an internal circadian timekeeping system with a near-24 h period. The human circadian timekeeping system interacts with sleep-wakefulness regulatory processes to modulate brain arousal, neurocognitive and affective function. Brain arousal is regulated by ascending brain stem, basal forebrain (BF) and hypothalamic arousal systems and inhibition or disruption of these systems reduces brain arousal, impairs cognition, and promotes sleep. The internal circadian timekeeping system modulates cognition and affective function by projections from the master circadian clock, located in the hypothalamic suprachiasmatic nuclei (SCN), to arousal and sleep systems and via clock gene oscillations in brain tissues. Understanding the basic principles of circadian and wakefulness-sleep physiology can help to recognize how the circadian system modulates human cognition and influences learning, memory and emotion. Developmental changes in sleep and circadian processes and circadian misalignment in circadian rhythm sleep disorders have important implications for learning, memory and emotion. Overall, when wakefulness occurs at appropriate internal biological times, circadian clockwork benefits human cognitive and emotion function throughout the lifespan. Yet, when wakefulness occurs at inappropriate biological times because of environmental pressures (e.g., early school start times, long work hours that include work at night, shift work, jet lag) or because of circadian rhythm sleep disorders, the resulting misalignment between circadian and wakefulness-sleep physiology leads to impaired cognitive performance, learning, emotion, and safety. PMID:22529774

  10. Photopic transduction implicated in human circadian entrainment

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Zeitzer, J. M.; Kronauer, R. E.; Czeisler, C. A.

    1997-01-01

    Despite the preeminence of light as the synchronizer of the circadian timing system, the phototransductive machinery in mammals which transmits photic information from the retina to the hypothalamic circadian pacemaker remains largely undefined. To determine the class of photopigments which this phototransductive system uses, we exposed a group (n = 7) of human subjects to red light below the sensitivity threshold of a scotopic (i.e. rhodopsin/rod-based) system, yet of sufficient strength to activate a photopic (i.e. cone-based) system. Exposure to this light stimulus was sufficient to reset significantly the human circadian pacemaker, indicating that the cone pigments which mediate color vision can also mediate circadian vision.

  11. Effect of Light on Human Circadian Physiology

    PubMed Central

    Duffy, Jeanne F.; Czeisler, Charles A.

    2009-01-01

    Synopsis The circadian system in animals and humans, being near but not exactly 24-hours in cycle length, must be reset on a daily basis in order to remain in synchrony with external environmental time. This process of entrainment is achieved in most mammals through regular exposure to light and darkness. In this chapter, we review the results of studies conducted in our laboratory and others over the past 25 years in which the effects of light on the human circadian timing system were investigated. These studies have revealed, how the timing, intensity, duration, and wavelength of light affect the human biological clock. Our most recent studies also demonstrate that there is much yet to learn about the effects of light on the human circadian timing system. PMID:20161220

  12. Circadian regulation of human sleep and age-related changes in its timing, consolidation and EEG characteristics

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Dijk, D. J.; Duffy, J. F.

    1999-01-01

    The light-entrainable circadian pacemaker located in the suprachiasmatic nucleus of the hypothalamus regulates the timing and consolidation of sleep by generating a paradoxical rhythm of sleep propensity; the circadian drive for wakefulness peaks at the end of the day spent awake, ie close to the onset of melatonin secretion at 21.00-22.00 h and the circadian drive for sleep crests shortly before habitual waking-up time. With advancing age, ie after early adulthood, sleep consolidation declines, and time of awakening and the rhythms of body temperature, plasma melatonin and cortisol shift to an earlier clock hour. The variability of the phase relationship between the sleep-wake cycle and circadian rhythms increases, and in old age sleep is more susceptible to internal arousing stimuli associated with circadian misalignment. The propensity to awaken from sleep advances relative to the body temperature nadir in older people, a change that is opposite to the phase delay of awakening relative to internal circadian rhythms associated with morningness in young people. Age-related changes do not appear to be associated with a shortening of the circadian period or a reduction of the circadian drive for wake maintenance. These changes may be related to changes in the sleep process itself, such as reductions in slow-wave sleep and sleep spindles as well as a reduced strength of the circadian signal promoting sleep in the early morning hours. Putative mediators and modulators of circadian sleep regulation are discussed.

  13. Circadian regulation of human sleep and age-related changes in its timing, consolidation and EEG characteristics.

    PubMed

    Dijk, D J; Duffy, J F

    1999-04-01

    The light-entrainable circadian pacemaker located in the suprachiasmatic nucleus of the hypothalamus regulates the timing and consolidation of sleep by generating a paradoxical rhythm of sleep propensity; the circadian drive for wakefulness peaks at the end of the day spent awake, ie close to the onset of melatonin secretion at 21.00-22.00 h and the circadian drive for sleep crests shortly before habitual waking-up time. With advancing age, ie after early adulthood, sleep consolidation declines, and time of awakening and the rhythms of body temperature, plasma melatonin and cortisol shift to an earlier clock hour. The variability of the phase relationship between the sleep-wake cycle and circadian rhythms increases, and in old age sleep is more susceptible to internal arousing stimuli associated with circadian misalignment. The propensity to awaken from sleep advances relative to the body temperature nadir in older people, a change that is opposite to the phase delay of awakening relative to internal circadian rhythms associated with morningness in young people. Age-related changes do not appear to be associated with a shortening of the circadian period or a reduction of the circadian drive for wake maintenance. These changes may be related to changes in the sleep process itself, such as reductions in slow-wave sleep and sleep spindles as well as a reduced strength of the circadian signal promoting sleep in the early morning hours. Putative mediators and modulators of circadian sleep regulation are discussed. PMID:10344586

  14. Physiological effects of light on the human circadian pacemaker

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Shanahan, T. L.; Czeisler, C. A.

    2000-01-01

    The physiology of the human circadian pacemaker and its influence and on the daily organization of sleep, endocrine and behavioral processes is an emerging interest in science and medicine. Understanding the development, organization and fundamental properties underlying the circadian timing system may provide insight for the application of circadian principles to the practice of clinical medicine, both diagnostically (interpretation of certain clinical tests are dependent on time of day) and therapeutically (certain pharmacological responses vary with the time of day). The light-dark cycle is the most powerful external influence acting upon the human circadian pacemaker. It has been shown that timed exposure to light can both synchronize and reset the phase of the circadian pacemaker in a predictable manner. The emergence of detectable circadian rhythmicity in the neonatal period is under investigation (as described elsewhere in this issue). Therefore, the pattern of light exposure provided in the neonatal intensive care setting has implications. One recent study identified differences in both amount of sleep time and weight gain in infants maintained in a neonatal intensive care environment that controlled the light-dark cycle. Unfortunately, neither circadian phase nor the time of day has been considered in most clinical investigations. Further studies with knowledge of principles characterizing the human circadian timing system, which governs a wide array of physiological processes, are required to integrate these findings with the practice of clinical medicine.

  15. Epidemiology of the human circadian clock.

    PubMed

    Roenneberg, Till; Kuehnle, Tim; Juda, Myriam; Kantermann, Thomas; Allebrandt, Karla; Gordijn, Marijke; Merrow, Martha

    2007-12-01

    Humans show large inter-individual differences in organising their behaviour within the 24-h day-this is most obvious in their preferred timing of sleep and wakefulness. Sleep and wake times show a near-Gaussian distribution in a given population, with extreme early types waking up when extreme late types fall asleep. This distribution is predominantly based on differences in an individuals' circadian clock. The relationship between the circadian system and different "chronotypes" is formally and genetically well established in experimental studies in organisms ranging from unicells to mammals. To investigate the epidemiology of the human circadian clock, we developed a simple questionnaire (Munich ChronoType Questionnaire, MCTQ) to assess chronotype. So far, more than 55,000 people have completed the MCTQ, which has been validated with respect to the Horne-Østberg morningness-eveningness questionnaire (MEQ), objective measures of activity and rest (sleep-logs and actimetry), and physiological parameters. As a result of this large survey, we established an algorithm which optimises chronotype assessment by incorporating the information on timing of sleep and wakefulness for both work and free days. The timing and duration of sleep are generally independent. However, when the two are analysed separately for work and free days, sleep duration strongly depends on chronotype. In addition, chronotype is both age- and sex-dependent. PMID:17936039

  16. Integration of human sleep-wake regulation and circadian rhythmicity

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Dijk, Derk-Jan; Lockley, Steven W.

    2002-01-01

    The human sleep-wake cycle is generated by a circadian process, originating from the suprachiasmatic nuclei, in interaction with a separate oscillatory process: the sleep homeostat. The sleep-wake cycle is normally timed to occur at a specific phase relative to the external cycle of light-dark exposure. It is also timed at a specific phase relative to internal circadian rhythms, such as the pineal melatonin rhythm, the circadian sleep-wake propensity rhythm, and the rhythm of responsiveness of the circadian pacemaker to light. Variations in these internal and external phase relationships, such as those that occur in blindness, aging, morning and evening, and advanced and delayed sleep-phase syndrome, lead to sleep disruptions and complaints. Changes in ocular circadian photoreception, interindividual variation in the near-24-h intrinsic period of the circadian pacemaker, and sleep homeostasis can contribute to variations in external and internal phase. Recent findings on the physiological and molecular-genetic correlates of circadian sleep disorders suggest that the timing of the sleep-wake cycle and circadian rhythms is closely integrated but is, in part, regulated differentially.

  17. The circadian timing system in clinical oncology.

    PubMed

    Innominato, Pasquale F; Roche, Véronique P; Palesh, Oxana G; Ulusakarya, Ayhan; Spiegel, David; Lévi, Francis A

    2014-06-01

    The circadian timing system (CTS) controls several critical molecular pathways for cancer processes and treatment effects over the 24 hours, including drug metabolism, cell cycle, apoptosis, and DNA damage repair mechanisms. This results in the circadian time dependency of whole-body and cellular pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics of anticancer agents. However, CTS robustness and phase varies among cancer patients, based on circadian monitoring of rest- activity, body temperature, sleep, and/or hormonal secretion rhythms. Circadian disruption has been further found in up to 50% of patients with metastatic cancer. Such disruption was associated with poor outcomes, including fatigue, anorexia, sleep disorders, and short progression-free and overall survival. Novel, minimally invasive devices have enabled continuous CTS assessment in non-hospitalized cancer patients. They revealed up to 12-hour differences in individual circadian phase. Taken together, the data support the personalization of chronotherapy. This treatment method aims at the adjustment of cancer treatment delivery according to circadian rhythms, using programmable-in-time pumps or novel release formulations, in order to increase both efficacy and tolerability. A fixed oxaliplatin, 5-fluorouracil and leucovorin chronotherapy protocol prolonged median overall survival in men with metastatic colorectal cancer by 3.3 months as compared to conventional delivery, according to a meta-analysis (P=0.009). Further analyses revealed the need for the prevention of circadian disruption or the restoration of robust circadian function in patients on chronotherapy, in order to further optimize treatment effects. The strengthening of external synchronizers could meet such a goal, through programmed exercise, meal timing, light exposure, improved social support, sleep scheduling, and the properly timed administration of drugs that target circadian clocks. Chrono-rehabilitation warrants clinical testing for improving

  18. Genetic Basis of Human Circadian Rhythm Disorders

    PubMed Central

    Jones, Christopher R.; Huang, Angela L.; Ptáček, Louis J.; Fu, Ying-Hui

    2012-01-01

    Circadian rhythm disorders constitute a group of phenotypes that usually present as altered sleep-wake schedules. Until a human genetics approach was applied to investigate these traits, the genetic components regulating human circadian rhythm and sleep behaviors remained mysterious. Steady advances in the last decade have dramatically improved our understanding of the genes involved in circadian rhythmicity and sleep regulation. Finding these genes presents new opportunities to use a wide range of approaches, including in vitro molecular studies and in vivo animal modeling, to elevate our understanding of how sleep and circadian rhythms are regulated and maintained. Ultimately, this knowledge will reveal how circadian and sleep disruption contribute to various ailments and shed light on how best to maintain and recover good health. PMID:22849821

  19. Dosing-Time Makes the Poison: Circadian Regulation and Pharmacotherapy.

    PubMed

    Dallmann, Robert; Okyar, Alper; Lévi, Francis

    2016-05-01

    Daily rhythms in physiology significantly modulate drug pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics according to the time-of-day, a finding that has led to the concept of chronopharmacology. The importance of biological clocks for xenobiotic metabolism has gained increased attention with the discovery of the molecular circadian clockwork. Mechanistic understanding of the cell-autonomous molecular circadian oscillator and the circadian timing system as a whole has opened new conceptual and methodological lines of investigation to understand first, the clock's impact on a specific drug's daily variations or the effects/side effects of environmental substances, and second, how clock-controlled pathways are coordinated within a given tissue or organism. Today, there is an increased understanding of the circadian modulation of drug effects. Moreover, several molecular strategies are being developed to treat disease-dependent and drug-induced clock disruptions in humans. PMID:27066876

  20. The Circadian Clock and Human Health.

    PubMed

    Roenneberg, Till; Merrow, Martha

    2016-05-23

    Epidemiological studies provided the first evidence suggesting a connection between the circadian clock and human health. Mutant mice convincingly demonstrate the principle that dysregulation of the circadian system leads to a multitude of pathologies. Chrono-medicine is one of the most important upcoming themes in the field of circadian biology. Although treatments counteracting circadian dysregulation are already being applied (e.g., prescribing strong and regular zeitgebers), we need to comprehend entrainment throughout the body's entire circadian network before understanding the mechanisms that tie circadian dysregulation to pathology. Here, we attempt to provide a systematic approach to understanding the connection between the circadian clock and health. This taxonomy of (mis)alignments on one hand exposes how little we know about entrainment within any organism and which 'eigen-zeitgeber' signals are used for entrainment by the different cells and tissues. On the other hand, it provides focus for experimental approaches and tools that will logically map out how circadian systems contribute to disease as well as how we can treat and prevent them. PMID:27218855

  1. Nonphotic entrainment of the human circadian pacemaker

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Klerman, E. B.; Rimmer, D. W.; Dijk, D. J.; Kronauer, R. E.; Rizzo, J. F. 3rd; Czeisler, C. A.

    1998-01-01

    In organisms as diverse as single-celled algae and humans, light is the primary stimulus mediating entrainment of the circadian biological clock. Reports that some totally blind individuals appear entrained to the 24-h day have suggested that nonphotic stimuli may also be effective circadian synchronizers in humans, although the nonphotic stimuli are probably comparatively weak synchronizers, because the circadian rhythms of many totally blind individuals "free run" even when they maintain a 24-h activity-rest schedule. To investigate entrainment by nonphotic synchronizers, we studied the endogenous circadian melatonin and core body temperature rhythms of 15 totally blind subjects who lacked conscious light perception and exhibited no suppression of plasma melatonin in response to ocular bright-light exposure. Nine of these fifteen blind individuals were able to maintain synchronization to the 24-h day, albeit often at an atypical phase angle of entrainment. Nonphotic stimuli also synchronized the endogenous circadian rhythms of a totally blind individual to a non-24-h schedule while living in constant near darkness. We conclude that nonphotic stimuli can entrain the human circadian pacemaker in some individuals lacking ocular circadian photoreception.

  2. Circadian regulation of human cortical excitability.

    PubMed

    Ly, Julien Q M; Gaggioni, Giulia; Chellappa, Sarah L; Papachilleos, Soterios; Brzozowski, Alexandre; Borsu, Chloé; Rosanova, Mario; Sarasso, Simone; Middleton, Benita; Luxen, André; Archer, Simon N; Phillips, Christophe; Dijk, Derk-Jan; Maquet, Pierre; Massimini, Marcello; Vandewalle, Gilles

    2016-01-01

    Prolonged wakefulness alters cortical excitability, which is essential for proper brain function and cognition. However, besides prior wakefulness, brain function and cognition are also affected by circadian rhythmicity. Whether the regulation of cognition involves a circadian impact on cortical excitability is unknown. Here, we assessed cortical excitability from scalp electroencephalography (EEG) responses to transcranial magnetic stimulation in 22 participants during 29 h of wakefulness under constant conditions. Data reveal robust circadian dynamics of cortical excitability that are strongest in those individuals with highest endocrine markers of circadian amplitude. In addition, the time course of cortical excitability correlates with changes in EEG synchronization and cognitive performance. These results demonstrate that the crucial factor for cortical excitability, and basic brain function in general, is the balance between circadian rhythmicity and sleep need, rather than sleep homoeostasis alone. These findings have implications for clinical applications such as non-invasive brain stimulation in neurorehabilitation. PMID:27339884

  3. Circadian regulation of human cortical excitability

    PubMed Central

    Ly, Julien Q. M.; Gaggioni, Giulia; Chellappa, Sarah L.; Papachilleos, Soterios; Brzozowski, Alexandre; Borsu, Chloé; Rosanova, Mario; Sarasso, Simone; Middleton, Benita; Luxen, André; Archer, Simon N.; Phillips, Christophe; Dijk, Derk-Jan; Maquet, Pierre; Massimini, Marcello; Vandewalle, Gilles

    2016-01-01

    Prolonged wakefulness alters cortical excitability, which is essential for proper brain function and cognition. However, besides prior wakefulness, brain function and cognition are also affected by circadian rhythmicity. Whether the regulation of cognition involves a circadian impact on cortical excitability is unknown. Here, we assessed cortical excitability from scalp electroencephalography (EEG) responses to transcranial magnetic stimulation in 22 participants during 29 h of wakefulness under constant conditions. Data reveal robust circadian dynamics of cortical excitability that are strongest in those individuals with highest endocrine markers of circadian amplitude. In addition, the time course of cortical excitability correlates with changes in EEG synchronization and cognitive performance. These results demonstrate that the crucial factor for cortical excitability, and basic brain function in general, is the balance between circadian rhythmicity and sleep need, rather than sleep homoeostasis alone. These findings have implications for clinical applications such as non-invasive brain stimulation in neurorehabilitation. PMID:27339884

  4. Circadian Rhythms, Sleep Deprivation, and Human Performance

    PubMed Central

    Goel, Namni; Basner, Mathias; Rao, Hengyi; Dinges, David F.

    2014-01-01

    Much of the current science on, and mathematical modeling of, dynamic changes in human performance within and between days is dominated by the two-process model of sleep–wake regulation, which posits a neurobiological drive for sleep that varies homeostatically (increasing as a saturating exponential during wakefulness and decreasing in a like manner during sleep), and a circadian process that neurobiologically modulates both the homeostatic drive for sleep and waking alertness and performance. Endogenous circadian rhythms in neurobehavioral functions, including physiological alertness and cognitive performance, have been demonstrated using special laboratory protocols that reveal the interaction of the biological clock with the sleep homeostatic drive. Individual differences in circadian rhythms and genetic and other components underlying such differences also influence waking neurobehavioral functions. Both acute total sleep deprivation and chronic sleep restriction increase homeostatic sleep drive and degrade waking neurobehavioral functions as reflected in sleepiness, attention, cognitive speed, and memory. Recent evidence indicating a high degree of stability in neurobehavioral responses to sleep loss suggests that these trait-like individual differences are phenotypic and likely involve genetic components, including circadian genes. Recent experiments have revealed both sleep homeostatic and circadian effects on brain metabolism and neural activation. Investigation of the neural and genetic mechanisms underlying the dynamically complex interaction between sleep homeostasis and circadian systems is beginning. A key goal of this work is to identify biomarkers that accurately predict human performance in situations in which the circadian and sleep homeostatic systems are perturbed. PMID:23899598

  5. Circadian systems biology: When time matters

    PubMed Central

    Fuhr, Luise; Abreu, Mónica; Pett, Patrick; Relógio, Angela

    2015-01-01

    The circadian clock is a powerful endogenous timing system, which allows organisms to fine-tune their physiology and behaviour to the geophysical time. The interplay of a distinct set of core-clock genes and proteins generates oscillations in expression of output target genes which temporally regulate numerous molecular and cellular processes. The study of the circadian timing at the organismal as well as at the cellular level outlines the field of chronobiology, which has been highly interdisciplinary ever since its origins. The development of high-throughput approaches enables the study of the clock at a systems level. In addition to experimental approaches, computational clock models exist which allow the analysis of rhythmic properties of the clock network. Such mathematical models aid mechanistic understanding and can be used to predict outcomes of distinct perturbations in clock components, thereby generating new hypotheses regarding the putative function of particular clock genes. Perturbations in the circadian timing system are linked to numerous molecular dysfunctions and may result in severe pathologies including cancer. A comprehensive knowledge regarding the mechanistic of the circadian system is crucial to develop new procedures to investigate pathologies associated with a deregulated clock. In this manuscript we review the combination of experimental methodologies, bioinformatics and theoretical models that have been essential to explore this remarkable timing-system. Such an integrative and interdisciplinary approach may provide new strategies with regard to chronotherapeutic treatment and new insights concerning the restoration of the circadian timing in clock-associated diseases. PMID:26288701

  6. Intact Interval Timing in Circadian CLOCK Mutants

    PubMed Central

    Cordes, Sara; Gallistel, C. R.

    2008-01-01

    While progress has been made in determining the molecular basis for the circadian clock, the mechanism by which mammalian brains time intervals measured in seconds to minutes remains a mystery. An obvious question is whether the interval timing mechanism shares molecular machinery with the circadian timing mechanism. In the current study, we trained circadian CLOCK +/− and −/− mutant male mice in a peak-interval procedure with 10 and 20-s criteria. The mutant mice were more active than their wild-type littermates, but there were no reliable deficits in the accuracy or precision of their timing as compared with wild-type littermates. This suggests that expression of the CLOCK protein is not necessary for normal interval timing. PMID:18602902

  7. Thyroid circadian timing: roles in physiology and thyroid malignancies.

    PubMed

    Philippe, Jacques; Dibner, Charna

    2015-04-01

    The circadian clock represents an anticipatory mechanism, well preserved in evolution. It has a critical impact on most aspects of the physiology of light-sensitive organisms. These rhythmic processes are governed by environmental cues (fluctuations in light intensity and temperature), an internal circadian timing system, and interactions between this timekeeping system and environmental signals. Endocrine body rhythms, including hypothalamic-pituitary-thyroid (HPT) axis rhythms, are tightly regulated by the circadian system. Although the circadian profiles of thyroid-releasing hormone (TRH), thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH), thyroxine (T4), and triiodothyronine (T3) in blood have been well described, relatively few studies have analyzed molecular mechanisms governing the circadian regulation of HPT axis function. In this review, we will discuss the latest findings in the area of complex regulation of thyroid gland function by the circadian oscillator. We will also highlight the molecular makeup of the human thyroid oscillator as well as the potential link between thyroid malignant transformation and alterations in the clockwork. PMID:25411240

  8. Light-induced suppression of endogenous circadian amplitude in humans

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Jewett, Megan; Czeisler, Charles A.; Kronauer, Richard E.

    1991-01-01

    A recent demonstration that the phase of the human circadian pacemaker could be inverted using an unconventional three-cycle stimulus has led to an investigation of whether critically timed exposure to a more moderate stimulus could drive that oscillator toward its singularity, a phaseless position at which the amplitude of circadian oscillation is zero. It is reported here that exposure of humans to fewer cycles of bright light, centered around the time at which the human circadian pacemaker is most sensitive to light-induced phase shifts, can markedly attenuate endogenous cicadian amplitude. In some cases this results in an apparent loss of rhythmicity, as expected to occur in the region of singularity.

  9. Pressed for time: the circadian clock and hypertension

    PubMed Central

    Fulton, David J.

    2009-01-01

    Hypertension is a major risk factor for cardiovascular disease and death. The “silent” rise of blood pressure that occurs over time is largely asymptomatic. However, its impact is deafening—causing and exacerbating cardiovascular disease, end-organ damage, and death. The present article addresses recent observations from human and animal studies that provide new insights into how the circadian clock regulates blood pressure, contributes to hypertension, and ultimately evolves vascular disease. Further, the molecular components of the circadian clock and their relationship with locomotor activity, metabolic control, fluid balance, and vascular resistance are discussed with an emphasis on how these novel, circadian clock-controlled mechanisms contribute to hypertension. PMID:19679741

  10. An approximation to the temporal order in endogenous circadian rhythms of genes implicated in human adipose tissue metabolism

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Although it is well established that human adipose tissue (AT) shows circadian rhythmicity, published studies have been discussed as if tissues or systems showed only one or few circadian rhythms at a time. To provide an overall view of the internal temporal order of circadian rhythms in human AT in...

  11. Association of intrinsic circadian period with morningness-eveningness, usual wake time, and circadian phase

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Duffy, J. F.; Rimmer, D. W.; Czeisler, C. A.

    2001-01-01

    The biological basis of preferences for morning or evening activity patterns ("early birds" and "night owls") has been hypothesized but has remained elusive. The authors reported that, compared with evening types, the circadian pacemaker of morning types was entrained to an earlier hour with respect to both clock time and wake time. The present study explores a chronobiological mechanism by which the biological clock of morning types may be set to an earlier hour. Intrinsic period, a fundamental property of the circadian system, was measured in a month-long inpatient study. A subset of participants also had their circadian phase assessed. Participants completed a morningness-eveningness questionnaire before study. Circadian period was correlated with morningness-eveningness, circadian phase, and wake time, demonstrating that a fundamental property of the circadian pacemaker is correlated with the behavioral trait of morningness-eveningness.

  12. Glaucoma Alters the Circadian Timing System

    PubMed Central

    Drouyer, Elise; Dkhissi-Benyahya, Ouria; Chiquet, Christophe; WoldeMussie, Elizabeth; Ruiz, Guadalupe; Wheeler, Larry A.; Denis, Philippe; Cooper, Howard M.

    2008-01-01

    Glaucoma is a widespread ocular disease and major cause of blindness characterized by progressive, irreversible damage of the optic nerve. Although the degenerative loss of retinal ganglion cells (RGC) and visual deficits associated with glaucoma have been extensively studied, we hypothesize that glaucoma will also lead to alteration of the circadian timing system. Circadian and non-visual responses to light are mediated by a specialized subset of melanopsin expressing RGCs that provide photic input to mammalian endogenous clock in the suprachiasmatic nucleus (SCN). In order to explore the molecular, anatomical and functional consequences of glaucoma we used a rodent model of chronic ocular hypertension, a primary causal factor of the pathology. Quantitative analysis of retinal projections using sensitive anterograde tracing demonstrates a significant reduction (∼50–70%) of RGC axon terminals in all visual and non-visual structures and notably in the SCN. The capacity of glaucomatous rats to entrain to light was challenged by exposure to successive shifts of the light dark (LD) cycle associated with step-wise decreases in light intensity. Although glaucomatous rats are able to entrain their locomotor activity to the LD cycle at all light levels, they require more time to re-adjust to a shifted LD cycle and show significantly greater variability in activity onsets in comparison with normal rats. Quantitative PCR reveals the novel finding that melanopsin as well as rod and cone opsin mRNAs are significantly reduced in glaucomatous retinas. Our findings demonstrate that glaucoma impacts on all these aspects of the circadian timing system. In light of these results, the classical view of glaucoma as pathology unique to the visual system should be extended to include anatomical and functional alterations of the circadian timing system. PMID:19079596

  13. The timing of the human circadian clock is accurately represented by the core body temperature rhythm following phase shifts to a three-cycle light stimulus near the critical zone

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Jewett, M. E.; Duffy, J. F.; Czeisler, C. A.

    2000-01-01

    A double-stimulus experiment was conducted to evaluate the phase of the underlying circadian clock following light-induced phase shifts of the human circadian system. Circadian phase was assayed by constant routine from the rhythm in core body temperature before and after a three-cycle bright-light stimulus applied near the estimated minimum of the core body temperature rhythm. An identical, consecutive three-cycle light stimulus was then applied, and phase was reassessed. Phase shifts to these consecutive stimuli were no different from those obtained in a previous study following light stimuli applied under steady-state conditions over a range of circadian phases similar to those at which the consecutive stimuli were applied. These data suggest that circadian phase shifts of the core body temperature rhythm in response to a three-cycle stimulus occur within 24 h following the end of the 3-day light stimulus and that this poststimulus temperature rhythm accurately reflects the timing of the underlying circadian clock.

  14. Circadian Timing in the Lung; A Specific Role for Bronchiolar Epithelial Cells

    PubMed Central

    Gibbs, J. E.; Beesley, S.; Plumb, J.; Singh, D.; Farrow, S.; Ray, D. W.; Loudon, A. S. I.

    2015-01-01

    In addition to the core circadian oscillator, located within the suprachiasmatic nucleus, numerous peripheral tissues possess self-sustaining circadian timers. In vivo these are entrained and temporally synchronized by signals conveyed from the core oscillator. In the present study, we examine circadian timing in the lung, determine the cellular localization of core clock proteins in both mouse and human lung tissue, and establish the effects of glucocorticoids (widely used in the treatment of asthma) on the pulmonary clock. Using organotypic lung slices prepared from transgenic mPER2::Luc mice, luciferase levels, which report PER2 expression, were measured over a number of days. We demonstrate a robust circadian rhythm in the mouse lung that is responsive to glucocorticoids. Immunohistochemical techniques were used to localize specific expression of core clock proteins, and the glucocorticoid receptor, to the epithelial cells lining the bronchioles in both mouse and human lung. In the mouse, these were established to be Clara cells. Murine Clara cells retained circadian rhythmicity when grown as a pure population in culture. Furthermore, selective ablation of Clara cells resulted in the loss of circadian rhythm in lung slices, demonstrating the importance of this cell type in maintaining overall pulmonary circadian rhythmicity. In summary, we demonstrate that Clara cells are critical for maintaining coherent circadian oscillations in lung tissue. Their coexpression of the glucocorticoid receptor and core clock components establishes them as a likely interface between humoral suprachiasmatic nucleus output and circadian lung physiology. PMID:18787022

  15. Neuroendocrine underpinnings of sex differences in circadian timing systems.

    PubMed

    Yan, Lily; Silver, Rae

    2016-06-01

    There are compelling reasons to study the role of steroids and sex differences in the circadian timing system. A solid history of research demonstrates the ubiquity of circadian changes that impact virtually all behavioral and biological responses. Furthermore, steroid hormones can modulate every attribute of circadian responses including the period, amplitude and phase. Finally, desynchronization of circadian rhythmicity, and either enhancing or damping amplitude of various circadian responses can produce different effects in the sexes. Studies of the neuroendocrine underpinnings of circadian timing systems and underlying sex differences have paralleled the overall development of the field as a whole. Early experimental studies established the ubiquity of circadian rhythms by cataloging daily and seasonal changes in whole organism responses. The next generation of experiments demonstrated that daily changes are not a result of environmental synchronizing cues, and are internally orchestrated, and that these differ in the sexes. This work was followed by the revelation of molecular circadian rhythms within individual cells. At present, there is a proliferation of work on the consequences of these daily oscillations in health and in disease, and awareness that these may differ in the sexes. In the present discourse we describe the paradigms used to examine circadian oscillation, to characterize how these internal timing signals are synchronized to local environmental conditions, and how hormones of gonadal and/or adrenal origin modulate circadian responses. Evidence pointing to endocrinologically and genetically mediated sex differences in circadian timing systems can be seen at many levels of the neuroendocrine and endocrine systems, from the cell, the gland and organ, and to whole animal behavior, including sleep/wake or rest/activity cycles, responses to external stimuli, and responses to drugs. We review evidence indicating that the analysis of the circadian

  16. Temporal integration of light flashes by the human circadian system

    PubMed Central

    Najjar, Raymond P.; Zeitzer, Jamie M.

    2016-01-01

    BACKGROUND. Beyond image formation, the light that is detected by retinal photoreceptors influences subcortical functions, including circadian timing, sleep, and arousal. The physiology of nonimage-forming (NIF) photoresponses in humans is not well understood; therefore, the development of therapeutic interventions based on this physiology, such as bright light therapy to treat chronobiological disorders, remains challenging. METHODS. Thirty-nine participants were exposed to 60 minutes of either continuous light (n = 8) or sequences of 2-millisecond light flashes (n = 31) with different interstimulus intervals (ISIs; ranging from 2.5 to 240 seconds). Melatonin phase shift and suppression, along with changes in alertness and sleepiness, were assessed. RESULTS. We determined that the human circadian system integrates flash sequences in a nonlinear fashion with a linear rise to a peak response (ISI = 7.6 ± 0.53 seconds) and a power function decrease following the peak of responsivity. At peak ISI, flashes were at least 2-fold more effective in phase delaying the circadian system as compared with exposure to equiluminous continuous light 3,800 times the duration. Flashes did not change melatonin concentrations or alertness in an ISI-dependent manner. CONCLUSION. We have demonstrated that intermittent light is more effective than continuous light at eliciting circadian changes. These findings cast light on the phenomenology of photic integration and suggest a dichotomous retinohypothalamic network leading to circadian phase shifting and other NIF photoresponses. Further clinical trials are required to judge the practicality of light flash protocols. TRIAL REGISTRATION. Clinicaltrials.gov NCT01119365. FUNDING. National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (1R01HL108441-01A1) and Department of Veterans Affairs Sierra Pacific Mental Illness Research, Education, and Clinical Center. PMID:26854928

  17. A Multi-Oscillatory Circadian System Times Female Reproduction

    PubMed Central

    Simonneaux, Valérie; Bahougne, Thibault

    2015-01-01

    Rhythms in female reproduction are critical to insure that timing of ovulation coincides with oocyte maturation and optimal sexual arousal. This fine tuning of female reproduction involves both the estradiol feedback as an indicator of oocyte maturation, and the master circadian clock of the suprachiasmatic nuclei (SCN) as an indicator of the time of the day. Herein, we are providing an overview of the state of knowledge regarding the differential inhibitory and stimulatory effects of estradiol at different stages of the reproductive axis, and the mechanisms through which the two main neurotransmitters of the SCN, arginine vasopressin, and vasoactive intestinal peptide, convey daily time cues to the reproductive axis. In addition, we will report the most recent findings on the putative functions of peripheral clocks located throughout the reproductive axis [kisspeptin (Kp) neurons, gonadotropin-releasing hormone neurons, gonadotropic cells, the ovary, and the uterus]. This review will point to the critical position of the Kp neurons of the anteroventral periventricular nucleus, which integrate both the stimulatory estradiol signal, and the daily arginine vasopressinergic signal, while displaying a circadian clock. Finally, given the critical role of the light/dark cycle in the synchronization of female reproduction, we will discuss the impact of circadian disruptions observed during shift-work conditions on female reproductive performance and fertility in both animal model and humans. PMID:26539161

  18. Biomarkers for Circadian Rhythm Disruption Independent of Time of Day

    PubMed Central

    Van Dycke, Kirsten C. G.; Pennings, Jeroen L. A.; van Oostrom, Conny T. M.; van Kerkhof, Linda W. M.; van Steeg, Harry; van der Horst, Gijsbertus T. J.; Rodenburg, Wendy

    2015-01-01

    Frequent shift work causes disruption of the circadian rhythm and might on the long-term result in increased health risk. Current biomarkers evaluating the presence of circadian rhythm disturbance (CRD), including melatonin, cortisol and body temperature, require 24-hr (“around the clock”) measurements, which is tedious. Therefore, these markers are not eligible to be used in large-scale (human) studies. The aim of the present study was to identify universal biomarkers for CRD independent of time of day using a transcriptomics approach. Female FVB mice were exposed to six shifts in a clockwise (CW) and counterclockwise (CCW) CRD protocol and sacrificed at baseline and after 1 shift, 6 shifts, 5 days recovery and 14 days recovery, respectively. At six time-points during the day, livers were collected for mRNA microarray analysis. Using a classification approach, we identified a set of biomarkers able to classify samples into either CRD or non-disrupted based on the hepatic gene expression. Furthermore, we identified differentially expressed genes 14 days after the last shift compared to baseline for both CRD protocols. Non-circadian genes differentially expressed upon both CW and CCW protocol were considered useful, universal markers for CRD. One candidate marker i.e. CD36 was evaluated in serum samples of the CRD animals versus controls. These biomarkers might be useful to measure CRD and can be used later on for monitoring the effectiveness of intervention strategies aiming to prevent or minimize chronic adverse health effects. PMID:25984797

  19. Circadian Rhythms in Human Memory.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Folkard, Simon; Monk, Timothy H.

    1980-01-01

    Two experiments are described that examined the influence of time-of-day of presentation on immediate and delayed retention and its potential effects on retrieval from long-term memory. Time of presentation was found to influence both immediate and delayed (28 day) retention, but not retrieval from long-term memory. (Author/SJL)

  20. Circadian Activity Rhythms, Time Urgency, and Achievement Concerns.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Watts, Barbara L.

    Many physiological and psychological processes fluctuate throughout the day in fairly stable, rhythmic patterns. The relationship between individual differences in circadian activity rhythms and a sense of time urgency were explored as well as a number of achievement-related variables. Undergraduates (N=308), whose circadian activity rhythms were…

  1. Comparison of circadian rhythms in male and female humans

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Winget, C. M.; Deroshia, C. W.; Vernikos-Danellis, J.; Rosenblatt, W. S.; Hetherington, N. W.

    1977-01-01

    Heart rate (HR) and rectal temperature (RT) data were obtained from 12 female and 27 male subjects. The subjects were housed in a facility where the environment was controlled. Human male and female RT and HR exhibit a circadian rhythm with an excursion of about 1.2 C and 30 beats/min, respectively. The acrophases, amplitudes, and level crossings are only slightly different between the sexes. The male HR and RT circadian wave forms are more stable than those of the females. However, the actual RT and HR of males were always lower than that of females at all time points around the clock. The HR during sleep in females is 15 per cent below the daily mean heart rate and in males, 22 per cent.

  2. Sex Differences in Circadian Timing Systems: Implications for Disease

    PubMed Central

    Bailey, Matthew; Silver, Rae

    2014-01-01

    Virtually every eukaryotic cell has an endogenous circadian clock and a biological sex. These cell-based clocks have been conceptualized as oscillators whose phase can be reset by internal signals such as hormones, and external cues such as light. The present review highlights the inter-relationship between circadian clocks and sex differences. In mammals, the suprachiasmatic nucleus (SCN) serves as a master clock synchronizing the phase of clocks throughout the body. Gonadal steroid receptors are expressed in almost every site that receives direct SCN input. Here we review sex differences in the circadian timing system in the hypothalamic-pituitary-gonadal axis (HPG), the hypothalamicadrenal-pituitary (HPA) axis, and sleep-arousal systems. We also point to ways in which disruption of circadian rhythms within these systems differs in the sexes and is associated with dysfunction and disease. Understanding sex differentiated circadian timing systems can lead to improved treatment strategies for these conditions. PMID:24287074

  3. Millisecond flashes of light phase delay the human circadian clock during sleep.

    PubMed

    Zeitzer, Jamie M; Fisicaro, Ryan A; Ruby, Norman F; Heller, H Craig

    2014-10-01

    The human circadian timing system is most sensitive to the phase-shifting effects of light during the biological nighttime, a time at which humans are most typically asleep. The overlap of sleep with peak sensitivity to the phase-shifting effects of light minimizes the effectiveness of using light as a countermeasure to circadian misalignment in humans. Most current light exposure treatments for such misalignment are mostly ineffective due to poor compliance and secondary changes that cause sleep deprivation. Using a 16-day, parallel group design, we examined whether a novel sequence of light flashes delivered during sleep could evoke phase changes in the circadian system without disrupting sleep. Healthy volunteers participated in a 2-week circadian stabilization protocol followed by a 2-night laboratory stay. During the laboratory session, they were exposed during sleep to either darkness (n = 7) or a sequence of 2-msec light flashes given every 30 sec (n = 6) from hours 2 to 3 after habitual bedtime. Changes in circadian timing (phase) and micro- and macroarchitecture of sleep were assessed. Subjects exposed to the flash sequence during sleep exhibited a delay in the timing of their circadian salivary melatonin rhythm compared with the control dark condition (p < 0.05). Confirmation that the flashes penetrated the eyelids is presented by the occurrence of an evoked response in the EEG. Despite the robust effect on circadian timing, there were no large changes in either the amount or spectral content of sleep (p values > 0.30) during the flash stimulus. Exposing sleeping individuals to 0.24 sec of light spread over an hour shifted the timing of the circadian clock and did so without major alterations to sleep itself. While a greater number of matched subjects and more research will be necessary to ascertain whether these light flashes affect sleep, our data suggest that this type of passive phototherapy might be developed as a useful treatment for circadian

  4. Circadian clocks and memory: time-place learning

    PubMed Central

    Mulder, C. K.; Gerkema, M. P.; Van der Zee, E. A.

    2013-01-01

    Time-Place learning (TPL) refers to the ability of animals to remember important events that vary in both time and place. This ability is thought to be functional to optimize resource localization and predator avoidance in a circadian changing environment. Various studies have indicated that animals use their circadian system for TPL. However, not much is known about this specific role of the circadian system in cognition. This review aims to put TPL in a broader context and to provide an overview of historical background, functional aspects, and future perspectives of TPL. Recent advances have increased our knowledge on establishing TPL in a laboratory setting, leading to the development of a behavioral paradigm demonstrating the circadian nature of TPL in mice. This has enabled the investigation of circadian clock components on a functional behavioral level. Circadian TPL (cTPL) was found to be Cry clock gene dependent, confirming the essential role of Cry genes in circadian rhythms. In contrast, preliminary results have shown that cTPL is independent of Per genes. Circadian system decline with aging predicts that cTPL is age sensitive, potentially qualifying TPL as a functional model for episodic memory and aging. The underlying neurobiological mechanism of TPL awaits further examination. Here we discuss some putative mechanisms. PMID:23596390

  5. Estimation methods for human circadian phase by use of peripheral tissues.

    PubMed

    Matsumura, Ritsuko; Node, Koichi; Akashi, Makoto

    2016-09-01

    Almost all living organisms, including humans, exhibit diurnal rhythms of physiology and behavior, which are driven by the circadian clock. Many studies have found that chronic misalignment between circadian and environmental/social rhythms carries a significant risk of various disorders, including sleep disorders, metabolic syndrome, cardiovascular diseases and cancer. However, irregular sleep-wake cycles and circadian maladjustment often cause 'social jet lag', which is minor but chronic jet-lag in our daily lives. Establishment of objective and convenient circadian-phase estimation methods in the clinical setting would therefore greatly contribute not only to resolving this global health problem but also to developing chronomedicine, a clinical approach for optimizing the time of day of treatments. Traditional melatonin-based methods have limitations with respect to circadian-phase evaluation; however, estimation methods based on clock gene expression may be able to compensate for these limitations. As a representative application of circadian-phase estimation based on clock gene expression, our method of using hair follicle cells may aid in the rapid clinical detection of circadian-related sleep problems, especially circadian rhythm sleep disorders that are masked because of forced adaptation to social time schedules. PMID:27334057

  6. Establishment of human cell lines showing circadian rhythms of bioluminescence.

    PubMed

    Yoshikawa, Aki; Shimada, Hiroko; Numazawa, Kahori; Sasaki, Tsukasa; Ikeda, Masaaki; Kawashima, Minae; Kato, Nobumasa; Tokunaga, Katsushi; Ebisawa, Takashi

    2008-11-28

    We have established human retinal pigment epithelial cell lines stably expressing the luciferase gene, driven by the human Bmal1 promoter, to obtain human-derived cells that show circadian rhythms of bioluminescence after dexamethasone treatment. The average circadian period of bioluminescence for the obtained clones was 24.07+/-0.48 h. Lithium (10 mM) in the medium significantly lengthened the circadian period of bioluminescence, which is consistent with previous reports, while 2 mM or 5 mM lithium had no effect. This is the first report on the establishment of human-derived cell lines that proliferate infinitely and show circadian rhythms of bioluminescence, and also the first to investigate the effects of low-dose lithium on the circadian rhythms of human-derived cells in vitro. The established cells will be useful for various in vitro studies of human circadian rhythms and for the development of new therapies for human disorders related to circadian rhythm disturbances. PMID:18809466

  7. Human skeletal myotubes display a cell-autonomous circadian clock implicated in basal myokine secretion

    PubMed Central

    Perrin, Laurent; Loizides-Mangold, Ursula; Skarupelova, Svetlana; Pulimeno, Pamela; Chanon, Stephanie; Robert, Maud; Bouzakri, Karim; Modoux, Christine; Roux-Lombard, Pascale; Vidal, Hubert; Lefai, Etienne; Dibner, Charna

    2015-01-01

    Objective Circadian clocks are functional in all light-sensitive organisms, allowing an adaptation to the external world in anticipation of daily environmental changes. In view of the potential role of the skeletal muscle clock in the regulation of glucose metabolism, we aimed to characterize circadian rhythms in primary human skeletal myotubes and investigate their roles in myokine secretion. Methods We established a system for long-term bioluminescence recording in differentiated human myotubes, employing lentivector gene delivery of the Bmal1-luciferase and Per2-luciferase core clock reporters. Furthermore, we disrupted the circadian clock in skeletal muscle cells by transfecting siRNA targeting CLOCK. Next, we assessed the basal secretion of a large panel of myokines in a circadian manner in the presence or absence of a functional clock. Results Bioluminescence reporter assays revealed that human skeletal myotubes, synchronized in vitro, exhibit a self-sustained circadian rhythm, which was further confirmed by endogenous core clock transcript expression. Moreover, we demonstrate that the basal secretion of IL-6, IL-8 and MCP-1 by synchronized skeletal myotubes has a circadian profile. Importantly, the secretion of IL-6 and several additional myokines was strongly downregulated upon siClock-mediated clock disruption. Conclusions Our study provides for the first time evidence that primary human skeletal myotubes possess a high-amplitude cell-autonomous circadian clock, which could be attenuated. Furthermore, this oscillator plays an important role in the regulation of basal myokine secretion by skeletal myotubes. PMID:26629407

  8. Period-independent novel circadian oscillators revealed by timed exercise and palatable meals

    PubMed Central

    Flôres, Danilo E. F. L.; Bettilyon, Crystal N.; Yamazaki, Shin

    2016-01-01

    The mammalian circadian system is a hierarchical network of oscillators organized to optimally coordinate behavior and physiology with daily environmental cycles. The suprachiasmatic nucleus (SCN) of the hypothalamus is at the top of this hierarchy, synchronizing to the environmental light-dark cycle, and coordinates the phases of peripheral clocks. The Period genes are critical components of the molecular timekeeping mechanism of these clocks. Circadian clocks are disabled in Period1/2/3 triple mutant mice, resulting in arrhythmic behavior in constant conditions. We uncovered rhythmic behavior in this mutant by simply exposing the mice to timed access to a palatable meal or running wheel. The emergent circadian behavior rhythms free-ran for many cycles under constant conditions without cyclic environmental cues. Together, these data demonstrate that the palatable meal-inducible circadian oscillator (PICO) and wheel-inducible circadian oscillator (WICO) are generated by non-canonical circadian clocks. Entrainment of these novel oscillators by palatable snacks and timed exercise could become novel therapeutics for human conditions caused by disruptions of the circadian clocks. PMID:26904978

  9. Period-independent novel circadian oscillators revealed by timed exercise and palatable meals.

    PubMed

    Flôres, Danilo E F L; Bettilyon, Crystal N; Yamazaki, Shin

    2016-01-01

    The mammalian circadian system is a hierarchical network of oscillators organized to optimally coordinate behavior and physiology with daily environmental cycles. The suprachiasmatic nucleus (SCN) of the hypothalamus is at the top of this hierarchy, synchronizing to the environmental light-dark cycle, and coordinates the phases of peripheral clocks. The Period genes are critical components of the molecular timekeeping mechanism of these clocks. Circadian clocks are disabled in Period1/2/3 triple mutant mice, resulting in arrhythmic behavior in constant conditions. We uncovered rhythmic behavior in this mutant by simply exposing the mice to timed access to a palatable meal or running wheel. The emergent circadian behavior rhythms free-ran for many cycles under constant conditions without cyclic environmental cues. Together, these data demonstrate that the palatable meal-inducible circadian oscillator (PICO) and wheel-inducible circadian oscillator (WICO) are generated by non-canonical circadian clocks. Entrainment of these novel oscillators by palatable snacks and timed exercise could become novel therapeutics for human conditions caused by disruptions of the circadian clocks. PMID:26904978

  10. The Circadian Timing System and Environmental Circadian Disruption: From Follicles to Fertility.

    PubMed

    Sen, Aritro; Sellix, Michael T

    2016-09-01

    The internal or circadian timing system is deeply integrated in female reproductive physiology. Considerable details of rheostatic timing function in the neuroendocrine control of pituitary hormone secretion, adenohypophyseal hormone gene expression and secretion, gonadal steroid hormone biosynthesis and secretion, ovulation, implantation, and parturition have been reported. The molecular clock, an autonomous feedback loop oscillator of interacting transcriptional regulators, dictates the timing and amplitude of gene expression in each tissue of the female hypothalamic-pituitary-gonadal (HPG) axis. Although multiple targets of the molecular clock have been identified, many associated with critical physiological functions in the HPG axis, the full extent of clock-driven gene expression and physiology in this critical system remains unknown. Environmental circadian disruption (ECD), the disturbance of temporal relationships within and between internal clocks (brain and periphery), and external timing cues (eg, light, nutrients, social cues) due to rotating/night shift work or transmeridian travel have been linked to reproductive dysfunction and subfertility. Moreover, ECD resulting from exposure to endocrine disrupting chemicals, environmental toxins, and/or irregular hormone levels during sexual development can also reduce fertility. Thus, perturbations that disturb clock function at the molecular, cellular or systemic level correlate with significant declines in female reproductive function. Here we briefly review the evidence for molecular clock function in each tissue of the female HPG axis (GnRH neuron, pituitary, uterus, oviduct, and ovary), describe the human epidemiological and animal data supporting the negative effects of ECD on fertility, and explore the potential for novel chronotherapeutics in women's health and fertility. PMID:27501186

  11. Acute exposure to 2G phase shifts the rat circadian timing system

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hoban-Higgins, T. M.; Murakami, D. M.; Tandon, T.; Fuller, C. A.

    1995-01-01

    The circadian timing system (CTS) provides internal and external temporal coordination of an animal's physiology and behavior. In mammals, the generation and coordination of these circadian rhythms is controlled by a neural pacemaker, the suprachiasmatic nucleus (SCN), located within the hypothalamus. The pacemaker is synchronized to the 24 hour day by time cures (zeitgebers) such as the light/dark cycle. When an animal is exposed to an environment without time cues, the circadian rhythms maintain internal temporal coordination, but exhibit a 'free-running' condition in which the period length is determined by the internal pacemaker. Maintenance of internal and external temporal coordination are critical for normal physiological and psychological function in human and non-human primates. Exposure to altered gravitational environments has been shown to affect the amplitude, mean, and timing of circadian rhythms in species ranging from unicellular organisms to man. However, it has not been determined whether altered gravitational fields have a direct effect on the neural pacemaker, or affect peripheral parameters. In previous studies, the ability of a stimulus to phase shift circadian rhythms was used to determine whether a stimulus has a direct effect on the neural pacemaker. The present experiment was performed in order to determine whether acute exposure to a hyperdynamic field could phase shift circadian rhythms.

  12. Time-Specific Fear Acts as a Non-Photic Entraining Stimulus of Circadian Rhythms in Rats.

    PubMed

    Pellman, Blake A; Kim, Earnest; Reilly, Melissa; Kashima, James; Motch, Oleksiy; de la Iglesia, Horacio O; Kim, Jeansok J

    2015-01-01

    Virtually all animals have endogenous clock mechanisms that "entrain" to the light-dark (LD) cycle and synchronize psychophysiological functions to optimal times for exploring resources and avoiding dangers in the environment. Such circadian rhythms are vital to human mental health, but it is unknown whether circadian rhythms "entrained" to the LD cycle can be overridden by entrainment to daily recurring threats. We show that unsignaled nocturnal footshock caused rats living in an "ethological" apparatus to switch their natural foraging behavior from the dark to the light phase and that this switch was maintained as a free-running circadian rhythm upon removal of light cues and footshocks. Furthermore, this fear-entrained circadian behavior was dependent on an intact amygdala and suprachiasmatic nucleus. Thus, time-specific fear can act as a non-photic entraining stimulus for the circadian system, and limbic centers encoding aversive information are likely part of the circadian oscillator network that temporally organizes behavior. PMID:26468624

  13. Aligning work and circadian time in shift workers improves sleep and reduces circadian disruption.

    PubMed

    Vetter, Céline; Fischer, Dorothee; Matera, Joana L; Roenneberg, Till

    2015-03-30

    Sleep loss and circadian disruption-a state of misalignment between physiological functions and imposed sleep/wake behavior-supposedly play central roles in the etiology of shift work-related pathologies [1-4]. Circadian entrainment is, however, highly individual [5], resulting in different chronotypes [6, 7]. Chronotype in turn modulates the effects of working times: compared to late chronotypes, earlier ones sleep worse and shorter and show higher levels of circadian misalignment during night shifts, while late types experience more sleep and circadian disruption than early types when working morning shifts [8]. To promote sleep and reduce the mismatch between circadian and working time, we implemented a chronotype-adjusted (CTA) shift schedule in a factory. We abolished the most strenuous shifts for extreme chronotypes (i.e., mornings for late chronotypes, nights for early ones) and examined whether sleep duration and quality, social jetlag [9, 10], wellbeing, subjective stress perception, and satisfaction with leisure time improved in this schedule. Intermediate chronotypes (quartiles 2 and 3) served as a control group, still working morning (6:00-14:00), evening (14:00-22:00), and night (22:00-6:00) shifts, with two strenuous shifts (out of twelve per month) replaced by evening ones. We observed a significant increase of self-reported sleep duration and quality, along with increased wellbeing ratings on workdays among extreme chronotypes. The CTA schedule reduced overall social jetlag by 1 hr, did not alter stress levels, and increased satisfaction with leisure time (early types only). Chronotype-based schedules thus can reduce circadian disruption and improve sleep; potential long-term effects on health and economic indicators need to be elucidated in future studies. PMID:25772446

  14. Thermoregulation is impaired in an environment without circadian time cues

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Fuller, C. A.; Sulzman, F. M.; Moore-Ede, M. C.

    1978-01-01

    Thirteen adult male squirrel monkeys were restrained to a metabolism chair for periods of two or more weeks within an isolation chamber having controlled environmental lighting and ambient temperature. The monkeys were subjected to mild 6-hour cold exposures at all circadian phases of the day. It was found that a prominent circadian rhythm in body temperature, regulated against mild cold exposure, was present in those monkeys synchronized in a 24-hour light-dark cycle. Cold exposures were found to produce decreased core body temperatures when the circadian rhythms were free running or when environmental time indicators were not present. It is concluded that the thermoregulating system depends on the internal synchronization of the circadian time-keeping system.

  15. Effects of caffeine on the human circadian clock in vivo and in vitro

    PubMed Central

    Burke, Tina M.; Markwald, Rachel R.; McHill, Andrew W.; Chinoy, Evan D.; Snider, Jesse A.; Bessman, Sara C.; Jung, Christopher M.; O’Neill, John S.; Wright, Kenneth P.

    2015-01-01

    Caffeine’s wakefulness-promoting and sleep-disrupting effects are well established, yet whether caffeine affects human circadian timing is unknown. Here we show that evening caffeine consumption delays the human circadian melatonin rhythm in vivo, and chronic application of caffeine lengthens the circadian period of molecular oscillations in vitro primarily via an adenosine receptor/cyclic AMP-dependent mechanism. In a double-blind, placebo controlled, ~49-day long within-subject study, we found the equivalent amount of caffeine as that in a double espresso 3 hours before habitual bedtime induced a phase delay of the circadian melatonin rhythm in humans by ~40 minutes. This magnitude of delay was nearly half of the magnitude of the phase-delaying response induced by exposure to 3-hours of evening bright-light (~3000 lux; ~7 Watts/m2) that began at habitual bedtime. Furthermore, using human osteosarcoma U2OS cells expressing clock gene luciferase reporters, we found a dose-dependent lengthening of circadian period by caffeine. By pharmacological dissection and siRNA knockdown we established that perturbation of adenosine receptor signaling, but not ryanodine receptor or phosphodiesterase activity, is sufficient to account for caffeine’s effects on cellular timekeeping. We also used a cyclic AMP biosensor to show that caffeine increased cyclic AMP levels, indicating that caffeine can influence a core component of the cellular circadian clock. Taken together, our findings demonstrate that caffeine influences human circadian timing and gives new insight into how the world’s most widely consumed psychoactive drug impacts upon human physiology. PMID:26378246

  16. Unwinding the Molecular Basis of Interval and Circadian Timing

    PubMed Central

    Agostino, Patricia V.; Golombek, Diego A.; Meck, Warren H.

    2011-01-01

    Neural timing mechanisms range from the millisecond to diurnal, and possibly annual, frequencies. Two of the main processes under study are the interval timer (seconds-to-minute range) and the circadian clock. The molecular basis of these two mechanisms is the subject of intense research, as well as their possible relationship. This article summarizes data from studies investigating a possible interaction between interval and circadian timing and reviews the molecular basis of both mechanisms, including the discussion of the contribution from studies of genetically modified animal models. While there is currently no common neurochemical substrate for timing mechanisms in the brain, circadian modulation of interval timing suggests an interaction of different frequencies in cerebral temporal processes. PMID:22022309

  17. The impact of circadian phenotype and time since awakening on diurnal performance in athletes.

    PubMed

    Facer-Childs, Elise; Brandstaetter, Roland

    2015-02-16

    Circadian rhythms, among other factors, have been shown to regulate key physiological processes involved in athletic performance. Personal best performance of athletes in the evening was confirmed across different sports. Contrary to this view, we identified peak performance times in athletes to be different between human "larks" and "owls" (also called "morningness/eveningness types" or "chronotypes" and referred to as circadian phenotypes in this paper), i.e., individuals with well-documented genetic and physiological differences that result in disparities between their biological clocks and how they entrain to exogenous cues, such as the environmental light/dark cycle and social factors. We found time since entrained awakening to be the major predictor of peak performance times, rather than time of day, as well as significant individual performance variations as large as 26% in the course of a day. Our novel approach combining the use of an athlete-specific chronometric test, longitudinal circadian analysis, and physical performance tests to characterize relevant sleep/wake and performance parameters in athletes allows a comprehensive analysis of the link between the circadian system and diurnal performance variation. We establish that the evaluation of an athlete's personal best performance requires consideration of circadian phenotype, performance evaluation at different times of day, and analysis of performance as a function of time since entrained awakening. PMID:25639241

  18. Emerging Models for the Molecular Basis of Mammalian Circadian Timing

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    Mammalian circadian timekeeping arises from a transcription-based feedback loop driven by a set of dedicated clock proteins. At its core, the heterodimeric transcription factor CLOCK:BMAL1 activates expression of Period, Cryptochrome, and Rev-Erb genes, which feed back to repress transcription and create oscillations in gene expression that confer circadian timing cues to cellular processes. The formation of different clock protein complexes throughout this transcriptional cycle helps to establish the intrinsic ∼24 h periodicity of the clock; however, current models of circadian timekeeping lack the explanatory power to fully describe this process. Recent studies confirm the presence of at least three distinct regulatory complexes: a transcriptionally active state comprising the CLOCK:BMAL1 heterodimer with its coactivator CBP/p300, an early repressive state containing PER:CRY complexes, and a late repressive state marked by a poised but inactive, DNA-bound CLOCK:BMAL1:CRY1 complex. In this review, we analyze high-resolution structures of core circadian transcriptional regulators and integrate biochemical data to suggest how remodeling of clock protein complexes may be achieved throughout the 24 h cycle. Defining these detailed mechanisms will provide a foundation for understanding the molecular basis of circadian timing and help to establish new platforms for the discovery of therapeutics to manipulate the clock. PMID:25303119

  19. Rapid Adjustment of Circadian Clocks to Simulated Travel to Time Zones across the Globe.

    PubMed

    Harrison, Elizabeth M; Gorman, Michael R

    2015-12-01

    Daily rhythms in mammalian physiology and behavior are generated by a central pacemaker located in the hypothalamic suprachiasmatic nuclei (SCN), the timing of which is set by light from the environment. When the ambient light-dark cycle is shifted, as occurs with travel across time zones, the SCN and its output rhythms must reset or re-entrain their phases to match the new schedule-a sluggish process requiring about 1 day per hour shift. Using a global assay of circadian resetting to 6 equidistant time-zone meridians, we document this characteristically slow and distance-dependent resetting of Syrian hamsters under typical laboratory lighting conditions, which mimic summer day lengths. The circadian pacemaker, however, is additionally entrainable with respect to its waveform (i.e., the shape of the 24-h oscillation) allowing for tracking of seasonally varying day lengths. We here demonstrate an unprecedented, light exposure-based acceleration in phase resetting following 2 manipulations of circadian waveform. Adaptation of circadian waveforms to long winter nights (8 h light, 16 h dark) doubled the shift response in the first 3 days after the shift. Moreover, a bifurcated waveform induced by exposure to a novel 24-h light-dark-light-dark cycle permitted nearly instant resetting to phase shifts from 4 to 12 h in magnitude, representing a 71% reduction in the mismatch between the activity rhythm and the new photocycle. Thus, a marked enhancement of phase shifting can be induced via nonpharmacological, noninvasive manipulation of the circadian pacemaker waveform in a model species for mammalian circadian rhythmicity. Given the evidence of conserved flexibility in the human pacemaker waveform, these findings raise the promise of flexible resetting applicable to circadian disruption in shift workers, frequent time-zone travelers, and any individual forced to adjust to challenging schedules. PMID:26275871

  20. Entrainment of the human circadian clock to the natural light-dark cycle.

    PubMed

    Wright, Kenneth P; McHill, Andrew W; Birks, Brian R; Griffin, Brandon R; Rusterholz, Thomas; Chinoy, Evan D

    2013-08-19

    The electric light is one of the most important human inventions. Sleep and other daily rhythms in physiology and behavior, however, evolved in the natural light-dark cycle [1], and electrical lighting is thought to have disrupted these rhythms. Yet how much the age of electrical lighting has altered the human circadian clock is unknown. Here we show that electrical lighting and the constructed environment is associated with reduced exposure to sunlight during the day, increased light exposure after sunset, and a delayed timing of the circadian clock as compared to a summer natural 14 hr 40 min:9 hr 20 min light-dark cycle camping. Furthermore, we find that after exposure to only natural light, the internal circadian clock synchronizes to solar time such that the beginning of the internal biological night occurs at sunset and the end of the internal biological night occurs before wake time just after sunrise. In addition, we find that later chronotypes show larger circadian advances when exposed to only natural light, making the timing of their internal clocks in relation to the light-dark cycle more similar to earlier chronotypes. These findings have important implications for understanding how modern light exposure patterns contribute to late sleep schedules and may disrupt sleep and circadian clocks. PMID:23910656

  1. Dynamic resetting of the human circadian pacemaker by intermittent bright light

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rimmer, D. W.; Boivin, D. B.; Shanahan, T. L.; Kronauer, R. E.; Duffy, J. F.; Czeisler, C. A.

    2000-01-01

    In humans, experimental studies of circadian resetting typically have been limited to lengthy episodes of exposure to continuous bright light. To evaluate the time course of the human endogenous circadian pacemaker's resetting response to brief episodes of intermittent bright light, we studied 16 subjects assigned to one of two intermittent lighting conditions in which the subjects were presented with intermittent episodes of bright-light exposure at 25- or 90-min intervals. The effective duration of bright-light exposure was 31% or 63% compared with a continuous 5-h bright-light stimulus. Exposure to intermittent bright light elicited almost as great a resetting response compared with 5 h of continuous bright light. We conclude that exposure to intermittent bright light produces robust phase shifts of the endogenous circadian pacemaker. Furthermore, these results demonstrate that humans, like other species, exhibit an enhanced sensitivity to the initial minutes of bright-light exposure.

  2. Circadian Rhythms, Metabolism, and Chrononutrition in Rodents and Humans.

    PubMed

    Johnston, Jonathan D; Ordovás, José M; Scheer, Frank A; Turek, Fred W

    2016-03-01

    Chrononutrition is an emerging discipline that builds on the intimate relation between endogenous circadian (24-h) rhythms and metabolism. Circadian regulation of metabolic function can be observed from the level of intracellular biochemistry to whole-organism physiology and even postprandial responses. Recent work has elucidated the metabolic roles of circadian clocks in key metabolic tissues, including liver, pancreas, white adipose, and skeletal muscle. For example, tissue-specific clock disruption in a single peripheral organ can cause obesity or disruption of whole-organism glucose homeostasis. This review explains mechanistic insights gained from transgenic animal studies and how these data are being translated into the study of human genetics and physiology. The principles of chrononutrition have already been demonstrated to improve human weight loss and are likely to benefit the health of individuals with metabolic disease, as well as of the general population. PMID:26980824

  3. Circadian misalignment increases cardiovascular disease risk factors in humans

    PubMed Central

    Morris, Christopher J.; Purvis, Taylor E.; Hu, Kun; Scheer, Frank A. J. L.

    2016-01-01

    Shift work is a risk factor for hypertension, inflammation, and cardiovascular disease. This increased risk cannot be fully explained by classic risk factors. One of the key features of shift workers is that their behavioral and environmental cycles are typically misaligned relative to their endogenous circadian system. However, there is little information on the impact of acute circadian misalignment on cardiovascular disease risk in humans. Here we show—by using two 8-d laboratory protocols—that short-term circadian misalignment (12-h inverted behavioral and environmental cycles for three days) adversely affects cardiovascular risk factors in healthy adults. Circadian misalignment increased 24-h systolic blood pressure (SBP) and diastolic blood pressure (DBP) by 3.0 mmHg and 1.5 mmHg, respectively. These results were primarily explained by an increase in blood pressure during sleep opportunities (SBP, +5.6 mmHg; DBP, +1.9 mmHg) and, to a lesser extent, by raised blood pressure during wake periods (SBP, +1.6 mmHg; DBP, +1.4 mmHg). Circadian misalignment decreased wake cardiac vagal modulation by 8–15%, as determined by heart rate variability analysis, and decreased 24-h urinary epinephrine excretion rate by 7%, without a significant effect on 24-h urinary norepinephrine excretion rate. Circadian misalignment increased 24-h serum interleukin-6, C-reactive protein, resistin, and tumor necrosis factor-α levels by 3–29%. We demonstrate that circadian misalignment per se increases blood pressure and inflammatory markers. Our findings may help explain why shift work increases hypertension, inflammation, and cardiovascular disease risk. PMID:26858430

  4. Racial Differences in the Human Endogenous Circadian Period

    PubMed Central

    Smith, Mark R.; Burgess, Helen J.; Fogg, Louis F.; Eastman, Charmane I.

    2009-01-01

    The length of the endogenous period of the human circadian clock (tau) is slightly greater than 24 hours. There are individual differences in tau, which influence the phase angle of entrainment to the light/dark (LD) cycle, and in doing so contribute to morningness-eveningness. We have recently reported that tau measured in subjects living on an ultradian LD cycle averaged 24.2 hours, and is similar to tau measured using different experimental methods. Here we report racial differences in tau. Subjects lived on an ultradian LD cycle (1.5 hours sleep, 2.5 hours wake) for 3 days. Circadian phase assessments were conducted before and after the ultradian days to determine the change in circadian phase, which was attributed to tau. African American subjects had a significantly shorter tau than subjects of other races. We also tested for racial differences in our previous circadian phase advancing and phase delaying studies. In the phase advancing study, subjects underwent 4 days of a gradually advancing sleep schedule combined with a bright light pulse upon awakening each morning. In the phase delaying study, subjects underwent 4 days of a gradually delaying sleep schedule combined with evening light pulses before bedtime. African American subjects had larger phase advances and smaller phase delays, relative to Caucasian subjects. The racial differences in tau and circadian phase shifting have important implications for understanding normal phase differences between individuals, for developing solutions to the problems of jet lag and shift work, and for the diagnosis and treatment of circadian rhythm based sleep disorders such as advanced and delayed sleep phase disorder. PMID:19564915

  5. What time is it? Deep learning approaches for circadian rhythms

    PubMed Central

    Agostinelli, Forest; Ceglia, Nicholas; Shahbaba, Babak; Sassone-Corsi, Paolo; Baldi, Pierre

    2016-01-01

    Motivation: Circadian rhythms date back to the origins of life, are found in virtually every species and every cell, and play fundamental roles in functions ranging from metabolism to cognition. Modern high-throughput technologies allow the measurement of concentrations of transcripts, metabolites and other species along the circadian cycle creating novel computational challenges and opportunities, including the problems of inferring whether a given species oscillate in circadian fashion or not, and inferring the time at which a set of measurements was taken. Results: We first curate several large synthetic and biological time series datasets containing labels for both periodic and aperiodic signals. We then use deep learning methods to develop and train BIO_CYCLE, a system to robustly estimate which signals are periodic in high-throughput circadian experiments, producing estimates of amplitudes, periods, phases, as well as several statistical significance measures. Using the curated data, BIO_CYCLE is compared to other approaches and shown to achieve state-of-the-art performance across multiple metrics. We then use deep learning methods to develop and train BIO_CLOCK to robustly estimate the time at which a particular single-time-point transcriptomic experiment was carried. In most cases, BIO_CLOCK can reliably predict time, within approximately 1 h, using the expression levels of only a small number of core clock genes. BIO_CLOCK is shown to work reasonably well across tissue types, and often with only small degradation across conditions. BIO_CLOCK is used to annotate most mouse experiments found in the GEO database with an inferred time stamp. Availability and Implementation: All data and software are publicly available on the CircadiOmics web portal: circadiomics.igb.uci.edu/. Contacts: fagostin@uci.edu or pfbaldi@uci.edu Supplementary information: Supplementary data are available at Bioinformatics online. PMID:27307647

  6. Site-specific circadian expression of leptin and its receptor in human adipose tissue

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Circadian variability of circulating leptin levels has been well established over the last decade. However, the circadian behavior of leptin in human adipose tissue remains unknown. This also applies to the soluble leptin receptor. We investigated the ex vivo circadian behavior of leptin and its rec...

  7. Influence of gravity on the circadian timing system

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Fuller, C. A.; Hoban-Higgins, T. M.; Griffin, D. W.; Murakami, D. M.

    1994-01-01

    The circadian timing system (CTS) is responsible for daily temporal coordination of physiological and behavioral functions both internally and with the external environment. Experiments in altered gravitational environments have revealed changes in circadian rhythms of species ranging from fungi to primates. The altered gravitational environments examined included both the microgravity environment of spaceflight and hyperdynamic environments produced by centrifugation. Acute exposure to altered gravitational environments changed homeostatic parameters such as body temperature. These changes were time of day dependent. Exposure to gravitational alterations of relatively short duration produced changes in both the homeostatic level and the amplitude of circadian rhythms. Chronic exposure to a non-earth level of gravity resulted in changes in the period of the expressed rhythms as well as in the phase relationships between the rhythms and between the rhythms and the external environment. In addition, alterations in gravity appeared to act as a time cue for the CTS. Altered gravity also affected the sensitivity of the pacemaker to other aspects of the environment (i.e., light) and to shifts of time cues. Taken together, these studies lead to the conclusion that the CTS is indeed sensitive to gravity and its alterations. This finding has implications for both basic biology and space medicine.

  8. Influence of gravity on the circadian timing system.

    PubMed

    Fuller, C A; Hoban-Higgins, T M; Griffin, D W; Murakami, D M

    1994-01-01

    The circadian timing system (CTS) is responsible for daily temporal coordination of physiological and behavioral functions both internally and with the external environment. Experiments in altered gravitational environments have revealed changes in circadian rhythms of species ranging from fungi to primates. The altered gravitational environments examined included both the microgravity environment of spaceflight and hyperdynamic environments produced by centrifugation. Acute exposure to altered gravitational environments changed homeostatic parameters such as body temperature. These changes were time of day dependent. Exposure to gravitational alterations of relatively short duration produced changes in both the homeostatic level and the amplitude of circadian rhythms. Chronic exposure to a non-earth level of gravity resulted in changes in the period of the expressed rhythms as well as in the phase relationships between the rhythms and between the rhythms and the external environment. In addition, alterations in gravity appeared to act as a time cue for the CTS. Altered gravity also affected the sensitivity of the pacemaker to other aspects of the environment (i.e., light) and to shifts of time cues. Taken together, these studies lead to the conclusion that the CTS is indeed sensitive to gravity and its alterations. This finding has implications for both basic biology and space medicine. PMID:11537948

  9. Gravitational biology and the mammalian circadian timing system.

    PubMed

    Fuller, C A; Murakami, D M; Sulzman, F M

    1989-01-01

    Mammals have evolved under the influence of many selective pressures. Two of these pressures have been the static force of gravity and the daily variations in the environment due to the rotation of the earth. It is now clear that each of these pressures has led to specific adaptations which influence how organisms respond to changes in either gravity or daily time cues. However, several unpredicted responses to altered gravitational environments occur within the homeostatic and circadian control systems. These results may be particularly relevant to biological and medical issues related to spaceflight. This paper demonstrates that the homeostatic regulation of rat body temperature, heart rate, and activity become depressed following exposure to a 2 G hyperdynamic field, and recovers within 5-6 days. In addition, the circadian rhythms of these same variables exhibit a depression of rhythm amplitude; however, recovery required a minimum of 7 days. PMID:11537343

  10. Using light to tell the time of day: sensory coding in the mammalian circadian visual network.

    PubMed

    Brown, Timothy M

    2016-06-15

    Circadian clocks are a near-ubiquitous feature of biology, allowing organisms to optimise their physiology to make the most efficient use of resources and adjust behaviour to maximise survival over the solar day. To fulfil this role, circadian clocks require information about time in the external world. This is most reliably obtained by measuring the pronounced changes in illumination associated with the earth's rotation. In mammals, these changes are exclusively detected in the retina and are relayed by direct and indirect neural pathways to the master circadian clock in the hypothalamic suprachiasmatic nuclei. Recent work reveals a surprising level of complexity in this sensory control of the circadian system, including the participation of multiple photoreceptive pathways conveying distinct aspects of visual and/or time-of-day information. In this Review, I summarise these important recent advances, present hypotheses as to the functions and neural origins of these sensory signals, highlight key challenges for future research and discuss the implications of our current knowledge for animals and humans in the modern world. PMID:27307539

  11. Using light to tell the time of day: sensory coding in the mammalian circadian visual network

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT Circadian clocks are a near-ubiquitous feature of biology, allowing organisms to optimise their physiology to make the most efficient use of resources and adjust behaviour to maximise survival over the solar day. To fulfil this role, circadian clocks require information about time in the external world. This is most reliably obtained by measuring the pronounced changes in illumination associated with the earth's rotation. In mammals, these changes are exclusively detected in the retina and are relayed by direct and indirect neural pathways to the master circadian clock in the hypothalamic suprachiasmatic nuclei. Recent work reveals a surprising level of complexity in this sensory control of the circadian system, including the participation of multiple photoreceptive pathways conveying distinct aspects of visual and/or time-of-day information. In this Review, I summarise these important recent advances, present hypotheses as to the functions and neural origins of these sensory signals, highlight key challenges for future research and discuss the implications of our current knowledge for animals and humans in the modern world. PMID:27307539

  12. Diurnal Preference Predicts Phase Differences in Expression of Human Peripheral Circadian Clock Genes

    PubMed Central

    Ferrante, Andrew; Gellerman, David; Ay, Ahmet; Woods, Kerri Pruitt; Filipowicz, Allan Michael; Jain, Kriti; Bearden, Neil

    2015-01-01

    Background: Circadian rhythms play an integral role in human behavior, physiology and health. Individual differences in daily rhythms (chronotypes) can affect individual sleep-wake cycles, activity patterns and behavioral choices. Diurnal preference, the tendency towards morningness or eveningness among individuals, has been associated with interpersonal variation in circadian clock-related output measures, including body temperature, melatonin levels and clock gene mRNA in blood, oral mucosa, and dermal fibroblast cell cultures. Methods: Here we report gene expression data from two principal clock genes sampled from hair follicle cells, a peripheral circadian clock. Hair follicle cells from fourteen individuals of extreme morning or evening chronotype were sampled at three time points. RNA was extracted and quantitative PCR assays were used to measure mRNA expression patterns of two clock genes, Per3 and Nr1d2. Results: We found significant differences in clock gene expression over time between chronotype groups, independent of gender or age of participants. Extreme evening chronotypes have a delay in phase of circadian clock gene oscillation relative to extreme morning types. Variation in the molecular clockwork of chronotype groups represents nearly three-hour phase differences (Per3: 2.61 hours; Nr1d2: 3.08 hours, both: 2.86) in circadian oscillations of these clock genes. Conclusions: The measurement of gene expression from hair follicles at three time points allows for a direct, efficient method of estimating phase shifts of a peripheral circadian clock in real-life conditions. The robust phase differences in temporal expression of clock genes associated with diurnal preferences provide the framework for further studies of the molecular mechanisms and gene-by-environment interactions underlying chronotype-specific behavioral phenomena, including social jetlag. PMID:27103930

  13. Intrinsic near-24-h pacemaker period determines limits of circadian entrainment to a weak synchronizer in humans

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wright, K. P. Jr; Hughes, R. J.; Kronauer, R. E.; Dijk, D. J.; Czeisler, C. A.

    2001-01-01

    Endogenous circadian clocks are robust regulators of physiology and behavior. Synchronization or entrainment of biological clocks to environmental time is adaptive and important for physiological homeostasis and for the proper timing of species-specific behaviors. We studied subjects in the laboratory for up to 55 days each to determine the ability to entrain the human clock to a weak circadian synchronizing stimulus [scheduled activity-rest cycle in very dim (approximately 1.5 lux in the angle of gaze) light-dark cycle] at three approximately 24-h periods: 23.5, 24.0, and 24.6 h. These studies allowed us to test two competing hypotheses as to whether the period of the human circadian pacemaker is near to or much longer than 24 h. We report here that imposition of a sleep-wake schedule with exposure to the equivalent of candle light during wakefulness and darkness during sleep is usually sufficient to maintain circadian entrainment to the 24-h day but not to a 23.5- or 24.6-h day. Our results demonstrate functionally that, in normally entrained sighted adults, the average intrinsic circadian period of the human biological clock is very close to 24 h. Either exposure to very dim light and/or the scheduled sleep-wake cycle itself can entrain this near-24-h intrinsic period of the human circadian pacemaker to the 24-h day.

  14. Intrinsic near-24-h pacemaker period determines limits of circadian entrainment to a weak synchronizer in humans.

    PubMed

    Wright, K P; Hughes, R J; Kronauer, R E; Dijk, D J; Czeisler, C A

    2001-11-20

    Endogenous circadian clocks are robust regulators of physiology and behavior. Synchronization or entrainment of biological clocks to environmental time is adaptive and important for physiological homeostasis and for the proper timing of species-specific behaviors. We studied subjects in the laboratory for up to 55 days each to determine the ability to entrain the human clock to a weak circadian synchronizing stimulus [scheduled activity-rest cycle in very dim (approximately 1.5 lux in the angle of gaze) light-dark cycle] at three approximately 24-h periods: 23.5, 24.0, and 24.6 h. These studies allowed us to test two competing hypotheses as to whether the period of the human circadian pacemaker is near to or much longer than 24 h. We report here that imposition of a sleep-wake schedule with exposure to the equivalent of candle light during wakefulness and darkness during sleep is usually sufficient to maintain circadian entrainment to the 24-h day but not to a 23.5- or 24.6-h day. Our results demonstrate functionally that, in normally entrained sighted adults, the average intrinsic circadian period of the human biological clock is very close to 24 h. Either exposure to very dim light and/or the scheduled sleep-wake cycle itself can entrain this near-24-h intrinsic period of the human circadian pacemaker to the 24-h day. PMID:11717461

  15. Timing Matters: Circadian Rhythm in Sepsis, Obstructive Lung Disease, Obstructive Sleep Apnea, and Cancer.

    PubMed

    Truong, Kimberly K; Lam, Michael T; Grandner, Michael A; Sassoon, Catherine S; Malhotra, Atul

    2016-07-01

    Physiological and cellular functions operate in a 24-hour cyclical pattern orchestrated by an endogenous process known as the circadian rhythm. Circadian rhythms represent intrinsic oscillations of biological functions that allow for adaptation to cyclic environmental changes. Key clock genes that affect the persistence and periodicity of circadian rhythms include BMAL1/CLOCK, Period 1, Period 2, and Cryptochrome. Remarkable progress has been made in our understanding of circadian rhythms and their role in common medical conditions. A critical review of the literature supports the association between circadian misalignment and adverse health consequences in sepsis, obstructive lung disease, obstructive sleep apnea, and malignancy. Circadian misalignment plays an important role in these disease processes and can affect disease severity, treatment response, and survivorship. Normal inflammatory response to acute infections, airway resistance, upper airway collapsibility, and mitosis regulation follows a robust circadian pattern. Disruption of normal circadian rhythm at the molecular level affects severity of inflammation in sepsis, contributes to inflammatory responses in obstructive lung diseases, affects apnea length in obstructive sleep apnea, and increases risk for cancer. Chronotherapy is an underused practice of delivering therapy at optimal times to maximize efficacy and minimize toxicity. This approach has been shown to be advantageous in asthma and cancer management. In asthma, appropriate timing of medication administration improves treatment effectiveness. Properly timed chemotherapy may reduce treatment toxicities and maximize efficacy. Future research should focus on circadian rhythm disorders, role of circadian rhythm in other diseases, and modalities to restore and prevent circadian disruption. PMID:27104378

  16. The regulation of central and peripheral circadian clocks in humans.

    PubMed

    Cermakian, N; Boivin, D B

    2009-11-01

    Many circadian rhythms are controlled by the central clock of the suprachiasmatic nucleus of the hypothalamus, as well as clocks located in other brain regions and most peripheral tissues. These central and peripheral clocks are based on clock genes and their protein products. In recent years, the expression of clock genes has started to be investigated in human samples, primarily white blood cells, but also skin, oral mucosa, colon cells, adipose tissue as well as post-mortem brain tissue. The expression of clock genes in those peripheral tissues offers a way to monitor human peripheral clocks and to compare their function and regulation with those of the central clock, which is followed by markers such as melatonin, cortisol and core body temperature. We have recently used such an approach to compare central and peripheral rhythms in subjects under different lighting conditions. In particular, we have monitored the entrainment of the clock of blood cells in subjects undergoing a simulated night shift protocol with bright light treatment, known to efficiently reset the central clock. This line of research will be helpful for learning more about the human circadian system and to find ways to alleviate health problems of shift workers, and other populations experiencing altered circadian rhythms. PMID:19849799

  17. The Effects of Gravity on the Circadian Timing System

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Fuller, Charles A.

    1999-01-01

    All vertebrates have a physiological control system that regulates the timing of the rhythms of their daily life. Dysfunction of this system, the circadian timing system (CTS), adversely affects an organism's ability to respond to environmental challenges and has been linked to physiological and psychological disorders. Exposure to altered gravitational environments (the microgravity of space and hyperdynamic environments produced via centrifugation) produces changes in both the functioning of the CTS and the rhythmic variables it controls. The earliest record of primate rhythms in a spaceflight environment come from Biosatellite III. The subject, a pig-tailed macaque, showed a loss of synchronization of the body temperature rhythm and a fragmented sleep-wake cycle. Alterations in the rhythm of body temperature were also seen in rhesus macaques flown on COSMOS 1514. Squirrel monkeys exposed to chronic centrifugation showed an initial decrease in the amplitude and mean of their body temperature and activity rhythms. In a microgravity environment, Squirrel monkeys on Spacelab-3 showed a reduction in the mean and amplitude of their feeding rhythms. Since 1992 we have had the opportunity to participate on three US/Russian sponsored biosatellite missions on which a total of six juvenile male rhesus macaques were flown. These animals uniformly exhibited delays in the phasing of their temperature rhythms, but not their heart rate or activity rhythms during spaceflight. There was also a tendency for changes in waveform mean and amplitude. These data suggest that the spaceflight environment may have a differential effect on the different oscillators controlling different rhythmic variables. Ongoing studies are examining the effects of +G on the CTS. The long-term presence of humans in space highlights the need for effective countermeasures to gravitational effects on the CTS.

  18. Phase Delaying the Human Circadian Clock with Blue-Enriched Polychromatic Light

    PubMed Central

    Smith, Mark R.; Eastman, Charmane I.

    2009-01-01

    The human circadian system is maximally sensitive to short-wavelength (blue) light. In a previous study we found no difference between the magnitude of phase advances produced by bright white versus bright blue-enriched light using light boxes in a practical protocol that could be used in the real world. Since the spectral sensitivity of the circadian system may vary with a circadian rhythm, we tested whether the results of our recent phase-advancing study hold true for phase delays. In a within-subjects counterbalanced design, this study tested whether bright blue-enriched polychromatic light (17000 K, 4000 lux) could produce larger phase delays than bright white light (4100 K, 5000 lux) of equal photon density (4.2 × 1015 photons/cm2/sec). Healthy young subjects (n = 13) received a 2 h phase delaying light pulse before bedtime combined with a gradually delaying sleep/dark schedule on each of 4 consecutive treatment days. On the first treatment day the light pulse began 3 h after the dim light melatonin onset (DLMO). An 8 h sleep episode began at the end of the light pulse. Light treatment and the sleep schedule were delayed 2 h on each subsequent treatment day. A circadian phase assessment was conducted before and after the series of light treatment days to determine the time of the DLMO and DLMOff. Phase delays in the blue-enriched and white conditions were not significantly different (DLMO: −4.45 ± 2.02 versus −4.48 ± 1.97 h; DLMOff: −3.90 ± 1.97 versus −4.35 ± 2.39 h, respectively). These results indicate that at light levels commonly used for circadian phase shifting blue-enriched polychromatic light is no more effective than the white polychromatic lamps of a lower correlated color temperature (CCT) for phase delaying the circadian clock. PMID:19444751

  19. Sensitivity of the human circadian pacemaker to nocturnal light: melatonin phase resetting and suppression

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Zeitzer, J. M.; Dijk, D. J.; Kronauer, R.; Brown, E.; Czeisler, C.

    2000-01-01

    Ocular exposure to early morning room light can significantly advance the timing of the human circadian pacemaker. The resetting response to such light has a non-linear relationship to illuminance. The dose-response relationship of the human circadian pacemaker to late evening light of dim to moderate intensity has not been well established. Twenty-three healthy young male and female volunteers took part in a 9 day protocol in which a single experimental light exposure6.5 h in duration was given in the early biological night. The effects of the light exposure on the endogenous circadian phase of the melatonin rhythm and the acute effects of the light exposure on plasma melatonin concentration were calculated. We demonstrate that humans are highly responsive to the phase-delaying effects of light during the early biological night and that both the phase resetting response to light and the acute suppressive effects of light on plasma melatonin follow a logistic dose-response curve, as do many circadian responses to light in mammals. Contrary to expectations, we found that half of the maximal phase-delaying response achieved in response to a single episode of evening bright light ( approximately 9000 lux (lx)) can be obtained with just over 1 % of this light (dim room light of approximately 100 lx). The same held true for the acute suppressive effects of light on plasma melatonin concentrations. This indicates that even small changes in ordinary light exposure during the late evening hours can significantly affect both plasma melatonin concentrations and the entrained phase of the human circadian pacemaker.

  20. Microgravity influences circadian clock oscillation in human keratinocytes

    PubMed Central

    Ranieri, Danilo; Cucina, Alessandra; Bizzarri, Mariano; Alimandi, Maurizio; Torrisi, Maria Rosaria

    2015-01-01

    Microgravity and sudden changes of gravitational forces exert numerous effects on tissues, organs and apparatus. Responses to these forces variably applied to cells indicate the existence of mechanotransduction pathways able to modulate transcription. Oscillation of circadian clocks similarly influences many cellular and metabolic processes. Here we hypothesized that signals derived from changes of gravitational forces applied to epidermal cells might influence their physiology in harmony with the oscillation of the molecular clock. In this study, we describe amplified oscillations of Bmal1 circadian clock gene in human keratinocytes exposed to short simulated microgravity and to rapid variation of gravitational forces. We found that exposure to microgravity enhances the amplitude of the Bmal1 feedback loop sustained by an apparently lower variability of Rev-erbα transcription, while recovery from microgravity is characterized by increased amplitude of Bmal1 expression and elongation of the oscillatory periods of Bmal1 and Rev-erbα. These data highlight the existence of integrated signaling network connecting mechanosensitive pathways to circadian gene regulation. PMID:26448904

  1. The Effects of Spaceflight on the Rat Circadian Timing System

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Fuller, Charles A.; Murakami, Dean M.; Hoban-Higgins, Tana M.; Fuller, Patrick M.; Robinson, Edward L.; Tang, I.-Hsiung

    2003-01-01

    Two fundamental environmental influences that have shaped the evolution of life on Earth are gravity and the cyclic changes occurring over the 24-hour day. Light levels, temperature, and humidity fluctuate over the course of a day, and organisms have adapted to cope with these variations. The primary adaptation has been the evolution of a biological timing system. Previous studies have suggested that this system, named the circadian (circa - about; dies - a day) timing system (CTS), may be sensitive to changes in gravity. The NASA Neurolab spaceflight provided a unique opportunity to evaluate the effects of microgravity on the mammalian CTS. Our experiment tested the hypotheses that microgravity would affect the period, phasing, and light sensitivity of the CTS. Twenty-four Fisher 344 rats were exposed to 16 days of microgravity on the Neurolab STS-90 mission, and 24 Fisher 344 rats were also studied on Earth as one-G controls. Rats were equipped with biotelemetry transmitters to record body temperature (T(sub b)) and heart rate (HR) continuously while the rats moved freely. In each group, 18 rats were exposed to a 24-hour light-dark (LD 12:12) cycle, and six rats were exposed to constant dim red-light (LL). The ability of light to induce a neuronal activity marker (c-fos) in the circadian pacemaker of the brain, the suprachiasmatic nucleus (SCN), was examined in rats studied on flight days two (FD2) and 14 (FD14), and postflight days two (R+1) and 14 (R+13). The flight rats in LD remained synchronized with the LD cycle. However, their T(sub b), rhythm was markedly phase-delayed relative to the LD cycle. The LD flight rats also had a decreased T(sub b) and a change in the waveform of the T(sub b) rhythm compared to controls. Rats in LL exhibited free-running rhythms of T(sub b), and HR; however, the periods were longer in microgravity. Circadian period returned to preflight values after landing. The internal phase angle between rhythms was different in flight than

  2. Time-of-day effects in implicit racial in-group preferences are likely selection effects, not circadian rhythms

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    Time-of-day effects in human psychological functioning have been known of since the 1800s. However, outside of research specifically focused on the quantification of circadian rhythms, their study has largely been neglected. Moves toward online data collection now mean that psychological investigations take place around the clock, which affords researchers the ability to easily study time-of-day effects. Recent analyses have shown, for instance, that implicit attitudes have time-of-day effects. The plausibility that these effects indicate circadian rhythms rather than selection effects is considered in the current study. There was little evidence that the time-of-day effects in implicit attitudes shifted appropriately with factors known to influence the time of circadian rhythms. Moreover, even variables that cannot logically show circadian rhythms demonstrated stronger time-of-day effects than did implicit attitudes. Taken together, these results suggest that time-of-day effects in implicit attitudes are more likely to represent processes of selection rather than circadian rhythms, but do not rule out the latter possibility. PMID:27114886

  3. Time-of-day effects in implicit racial in-group preferences are likely selection effects, not circadian rhythms.

    PubMed

    Schofield, Timothy P

    2016-01-01

    Time-of-day effects in human psychological functioning have been known of since the 1800s. However, outside of research specifically focused on the quantification of circadian rhythms, their study has largely been neglected. Moves toward online data collection now mean that psychological investigations take place around the clock, which affords researchers the ability to easily study time-of-day effects. Recent analyses have shown, for instance, that implicit attitudes have time-of-day effects. The plausibility that these effects indicate circadian rhythms rather than selection effects is considered in the current study. There was little evidence that the time-of-day effects in implicit attitudes shifted appropriately with factors known to influence the time of circadian rhythms. Moreover, even variables that cannot logically show circadian rhythms demonstrated stronger time-of-day effects than did implicit attitudes. Taken together, these results suggest that time-of-day effects in implicit attitudes are more likely to represent processes of selection rather than circadian rhythms, but do not rule out the latter possibility. PMID:27114886

  4. Endogenous circadian system and circadian misalignment impact glucose tolerance via separate mechanisms in humans.

    PubMed

    Morris, Christopher J; Yang, Jessica N; Garcia, Joanna I; Myers, Samantha; Bozzi, Isadora; Wang, Wei; Buxton, Orfeu M; Shea, Steven A; Scheer, Frank A J L

    2015-04-28

    Glucose tolerance is lower in the evening and at night than in the morning. However, the relative contribution of the circadian system vs. the behavioral cycle (including the sleep/wake and fasting/feeding cycles) is unclear. Furthermore, although shift work is a diabetes risk factor, the separate impact on glucose tolerance of the behavioral cycle, circadian phase, and circadian disruption (i.e., misalignment between the central circadian pacemaker and the behavioral cycle) has not been systematically studied. Here we show--by using two 8-d laboratory protocols--in healthy adults that the circadian system and circadian misalignment have distinct influences on glucose tolerance, both separate from the behavioral cycle. First, postprandial glucose was 17% higher (i.e., lower glucose tolerance) in the biological evening (8:00 PM) than morning (8:00 AM; i.e., a circadian phase effect), independent of the behavioral cycle effect. Second, circadian misalignment itself (12-h behavioral cycle inversion) increased postprandial glucose by 6%. Third, these variations in glucose tolerance appeared to be explained, at least in part, by different mechanisms: during the biological evening by decreased pancreatic β-cell function (27% lower early-phase insulin) and during circadian misalignment presumably by decreased insulin sensitivity (elevated postprandial glucose despite 14% higher late-phase insulin) without change in early-phase insulin. We explored possible contributing factors, including changes in polysomnographic sleep and 24-h hormonal profiles. We demonstrate that the circadian system importantly contributes to the reduced glucose tolerance observed in the evening compared with the morning. Separately, circadian misalignment reduces glucose tolerance, providing a mechanism to help explain the increased diabetes risk in shift workers. PMID:25870289

  5. Selective Influence of Circadian Modulation and Task Characteristics on Motor Imagery Time

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Debarnot, Ursula; Sahraoui, Djafar; Champely, Stephane; Collet, Christian; Guillot, Aymeric

    2012-01-01

    In this study, we examined the effect of circadian modulation on motor imagery (MI) time while also considering the effects of task complexity and duration. The ability to imagine in real time was influenced by circadian modulation in a simple walking condition, with longer MI times in the morning and evening sessions. By contrast, there was no…

  6. The Physiological Period Length of the Human Circadian Clock In Vivo Is Directly Proportional to Period in Human Fibroblasts

    PubMed Central

    Moriggi, Ermanno; Revell, Victoria L.; Hack, Lisa M.; Lockley, Steven W.; Arendt, Josephine; Skene, Debra J.; Meier, Fides; Izakovic, Jan; Wirz-Justice, Anna; Cajochen, Christian; Sergeeva, Oksana J.; Cheresiz, Sergei V.; Danilenko, Konstantin V.; Eckert, Anne; Brown, Steven A.

    2010-01-01

    Background Diurnal behavior in humans is governed by the period length of a circadian clock in the suprachiasmatic nuclei of the brain hypothalamus. Nevertheless, the cell-intrinsic mechanism of this clock is present in most cells of the body. We have shown previously that for individuals of extreme chronotype (“larks” and “owls”), clock properties measured in human fibroblasts correlated with extreme diurnal behavior. Methodology/Principal Findings In this study, we have measured circadian period in human primary fibroblasts taken from normal individuals and, for the first time, compared it directly with physiological period measured in vivo in the same subjects. Human physiological period length was estimated via the secretion pattern of the hormone melatonin in two different groups of sighted subjects and one group of totally blind subjects, each using different methods. Fibroblast period length was measured via cyclical expression of a lentivirally delivered circadian reporter. Within each group, a positive linear correlation was observed between circadian period length in physiology and in fibroblast gene expression. Interestingly, although blind individuals showed on average the same fibroblast clock properties as sighted ones, their physiological periods were significantly longer. Conclusions/Significance We conclude that the period of human circadian behaviour is mostly driven by cellular clock properties in normal individuals and can be approximated by measurement in peripheral cells such as fibroblasts. Based upon differences among sighted and blind subjects, we also speculate that period can be modified by prolonged unusual conditions such as the total light deprivation of blindness. PMID:21042402

  7. IL-6 and its circadian secretion in humans.

    PubMed

    Vgontzas, A N; Bixler, E O; Lin, H-M; Prolo, P; Trakada, G; Chrousos, G P

    2005-01-01

    Interleukin-6 (IL-6) is a pleiotropic cytokine produced by numerous types of immune and nonimmune cells and is involved in many pathophysiologic mechanisms in humans. Many studies suggest that IL-6 is a putative 'sleep factor' and its circadian secretion correlates with sleep/sleepiness. IL-6 is elevated in disorders of excessive daytime sleepiness such as narcolepsy and obstructive sleep apnea. It correlates positively with body mass index and may be a mediator of sleepiness in obesity. Also the secretion of this cytokine is stimulated by total acute or partial short-term sleep loss reflecting the increased sleepiness experienced by sleep-deprived individuals. Studies that evaluated the 24-hour secretory pattern of IL-6 in healthy young adults suggest that IL-6 is secreted in a biphasic circadian pattern with two nadirs at about 08.00 and 21.00, and two zeniths at about 19.00 and 05.00 h. In contrast, following sleep deprivation or in disorders of sleep disturbance, e.g., insomnia, IL-6 peaks during the day and, based on the level of stress system activity, i.e., cortisol secretion, contributes to either sleepiness and deep sleep (low cortisol) or feelings of tiredness and fatigue and poor sleep (high cortisol). In order to address concerns about the potential impact of differences of IL-6 levels between the beginning and the end of the 24-hour blood-drawing experiment, we proceeded with a cosinor analysis of 'detrended' data in young and old healthy individuals. This new analysis did not affect the biphasic circadian pattern of IL-6 secretion in young adults, while it augmented the flattened circadian pattern in old individuals in whom the difference was greater. Finally, IL-6 appears to be somnogenic in rats and exhibits a diurnal rhythm that follows the sleep/wake cycle in these animals. We conclude that IL-6 is a mediator of sleepiness and its circadian pattern reflects the homeostatic drive for sleep. PMID:15905620

  8. Circadian and sleep-dependent regulation of hormone release in humans

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Czeisler, C. A.; Klerman, E. B.

    1999-01-01

    Daily oscillations characterize the release of nearly every hormone. The circadian pacemaker, located in the suprachiasmatic nucleus of the hypothalamus, generates circadian, approximately 24-hour rhythms in many physiologic functions. However, the observed hormonal oscillations do not simply reflect the output of this internal clock. Instead, daily hormonal profiles are the product of a complex interaction between the output of the circadian pacemaker, periodic changes in behavior, light exposure, neuroendocrine feedback mechanisms, gender, age, and the timing of sleep and wakefulness. The interaction of these factors can affect hormonal secretory pulse frequency and amplitude, with each endocrine system differentially affected by these factors. This chapter examines recent advances in understanding the effects on endocrine rhythms of a number of these factors. Sleep exerts a profound effect on endocrine secretion. Sleep is a dynamic process that is characterized by periodic changes in electrophysiologic activity. These electrophysiologic changes, which are used to mark the state and depth of sleep, are associated with periodic, short-term variations in hormonal levels. The secretion of hormones such as renin and human growth hormone are strongly influenced by sleep or wake state, while melatonin and cortisol levels are relatively unaffected by sleep or wake state. In addition, sleep is associated with changes in posture, behavior, and light exposure, each of which is known to affect endocrine secretion. Furthermore, the tight concordance of habitual sleep and wake times with certain circadian phases has made it difficult to distinguish sleep and circadian effects on these hormones. Specific protocols, designed to extract circadian and sleep information semi-independently, have been developed and have yielded important insights into the effects of these regulatory processes. These results may help to account for changes in endocrine rhythms observed in circadian

  9. Effects of aging on circadian patterns of gene expression in the human prefrontal cortex

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Cho-Yi; Logan, Ryan W.; Ma, Tianzhou; Lewis, David A.; Tseng, George C.; Sibille, Etienne; McClung, Colleen A.

    2016-01-01

    With aging, significant changes in circadian rhythms occur, including a shift in phase toward a “morning” chronotype and a loss of rhythmicity in circulating hormones. However, the effects of aging on molecular rhythms in the human brain have remained elusive. Here, we used a previously described time-of-death analysis to identify transcripts throughout the genome that have a significant circadian rhythm in expression in the human prefrontal cortex [Brodmann’s area 11 (BA11) and BA47]. Expression levels were determined by microarray analysis in 146 individuals. Rhythmicity in expression was found in ∼10% of detected transcripts (P < 0.05). Using a metaanalysis across the two brain areas, we identified a core set of 235 genes (q < 0.05) with significant circadian rhythms of expression. These 235 genes showed 92% concordance in the phase of expression between the two areas. In addition to the canonical core circadian genes, a number of other genes were found to exhibit rhythmic expression in the brain. Notably, we identified more than 1,000 genes (1,186 in BA11; 1,591 in BA47) that exhibited age-dependent rhythmicity or alterations in rhythmicity patterns with aging. Interestingly, a set of transcripts gained rhythmicity in older individuals, which may represent a compensatory mechanism due to a loss of canonical clock function. Thus, we confirm that rhythmic gene expression can be reliably measured in human brain and identified for the first time (to our knowledge) significant changes in molecular rhythms with aging that may contribute to altered cognition, sleep, and mood in later life. PMID:26699485

  10. Modeling circadian and sleep-homeostatic effects on short-term interval timing

    PubMed Central

    Späti, Jakub; Aritake, Sayaka; Meyer, Andrea H.; Kitamura, Shingo; Hida, Akiko; Higuchi, Shigekazu; Moriguchi, Yoshiya; Mishima, Kazuo

    2015-01-01

    Short-term interval timing i.e., perception and action relating to durations in the seconds range, has been suggested to display time-of-day as well as wake dependent fluctuations due to circadian and sleep-homeostatic changes to the rate at which an underlying pacemaker emits pulses; pertinent human data being relatively sparse and lacking in consistency however, the phenomenon remains elusive and its mechanism poorly understood. To better characterize the putative circadian and sleep-homeostatic effects on interval timing and to assess the ability of a pacemaker-based mechanism to account for the data, we measured timing performance in eighteen young healthy male subjects across two epochs of sustained wakefulness of 38.67 h each, conducted prior to (under entrained conditions) and following (under free-running conditions) a 28 h sleep-wake schedule, using the methods of duration estimation and duration production on target intervals of 10 and 40 s. Our findings of opposing oscillatory time courses across both epochs of sustained wakefulness that combine with increasing and, respectively, decreasing, saturating exponential change for the tasks of estimation and production are consistent with the hypothesis that a pacemaker emitting pulses at a rate controlled by the circadian oscillator and increasing with time awake determines human short-term interval timing; the duration-specificity of this pattern is interpreted as reflecting challenges to maintaining stable attention to the task that progressively increase with stimulus magnitude and thereby moderate the effects of pacemaker-rate changes on overt behavior. PMID:25741253

  11. WIDE AWAKE mediates the circadian timing of sleep onset.

    PubMed

    Liu, Sha; Lamaze, Angelique; Liu, Qili; Tabuchi, Masashi; Yang, Yong; Fowler, Melissa; Bharadwaj, Rajnish; Zhang, Julia; Bedont, Joseph; Blackshaw, Seth; Lloyd, Thomas E; Montell, Craig; Sehgal, Amita; Koh, Kyunghee; Wu, Mark N

    2014-04-01

    How the circadian clock regulates the timing of sleep is poorly understood. Here, we identify a Drosophila mutant, wide awake (wake), that exhibits a marked delay in sleep onset at dusk. Loss of WAKE in a set of arousal-promoting clock neurons, the large ventrolateral neurons (l-LNvs), impairs sleep onset. WAKE levels cycle, peaking near dusk, and the expression of WAKE in l-LNvs is Clock dependent. Strikingly, Clock and cycle mutants also exhibit a profound delay in sleep onset, which can be rescued by restoring WAKE expression in LNvs. WAKE interacts with the GABAA receptor Resistant to Dieldrin (RDL), upregulating its levels and promoting its localization to the plasma membrane. In wake mutant l-LNvs, GABA sensitivity is decreased and excitability is increased at dusk. We propose that WAKE acts as a clock output molecule specifically for sleep, inhibiting LNvs at dusk to promote the transition from wake to sleep. PMID:24631345

  12. Later endogenous circadian temperature nadir relative to an earlier wake time in older people

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Duffy, J. F.; Dijk, D. J.; Klerman, E. B.; Czeisler, C. A.

    1998-01-01

    The contribution of the circadian timing system to the age-related advance of sleep-wake timing was investigated in two experiments. In a constant routine protocol, we found that the average wake time and endogenous circadian phase of 44 older subjects were earlier than that of 101 young men. However, the earlier circadian phase of the older subjects actually occurred later relative to their habitual wake time than it did in young men. These results indicate that an age-related advance of circadian phase cannot fully account for the high prevalence of early morning awakening in healthy older people. In a second study, 13 older subjects and 10 young men were scheduled to a 28-h day, such that they were scheduled to sleep at many circadian phases. Self-reported awakening from scheduled sleep episodes and cognitive throughput during the second half of the wake episode varied markedly as a function of circadian phase in both groups. The rising phase of both rhythms was advanced in the older subjects, suggesting an age-related change in the circadian regulation of sleep-wake propensity. We hypothesize that under entrained conditions, these age-related changes in the relationship between circadian phase and wake time are likely associated with self-selected light exposure at an earlier circadian phase. This earlier exposure to light could account for the earlier clock hour to which the endogenous circadian pacemaker is entrained in older people and thereby further increase their propensity to awaken at an even earlier time.

  13. Circadian rhythms in human performance and mood under constant conditions

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Monk, T. H.; Buysse, D. J.; Reynolds, C. F. 3rd; Berga, S. L.; Jarrett, D. B.; Begley, A. E.; Kupfer, D. J.

    1997-01-01

    This study explored the relationship between circadian performance rhythms and rhythms in rectal temperature, plasma cortisol, plasma melatonin, subjective alertness and well-being. Seventeen healthy young adults were studied under 36 h of 'unmasking' conditions (constant wakeful bedrest, temporal isolation, homogenized 'meals') during which rectal temperatures were measured every minute, and plasma cortisol and plasma melatonin measured every 20 min. Hourly subjective ratings of global vigour (alertness) and affect (well-being) were obtained followed by one of two performance batteries. On odd-numbered hours performance (speed and accuracy) of serial search, verbal reasoning and manual dexterity tasks was assessed. On even-numbered hours, performance (% hits, response speed) was measured at a 25-30 min visual vigilance task. Performance of all tasks (except search accuracy) showed a significant time of day variation usually with a nocturnal trough close to the trough in rectal temperature. Performance rhythms appeared not to reliably differ with working memory load. Within subjects, predominantly positive correlations emerged between good performance and higher temperatures and better subjective alertness; predominantly negative correlations between good performance and higher plasma levels of cortisol and melatonin. Temperature and cortisol rhythms correlated with slightly more performance measures (5/7) than did melatonin rhythms (4/7). Global vigour correlated about as well with performance (5/7) as did temperature, and considerably better than global affect (1/7). In conclusion: (1) between-task heterogeneity in circadian performance rhythms appeared to be absent when the sleep/wake cycle was suspended; (2) temperature (positively), cortisol and melatonin (negatively) appeared equally good as circadian correlates of performance, and (3) subjective alertness correlated with performance rhythms as well as (but not better than) body temperature, suggesting that

  14. Circadian expression of adiponectin and its receptors in human adipose tissue

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Adiponectin is one of the most clinically relevant cytokines associated with obesity. However, circadian rhythmicity of adiponectin in human adipose tissue (AT) has not been analyzed. To assess whether the mRNA levels of adiponectin and its receptors (ADIPOR1 and ADIPOR2) might show daily circadian ...

  15. Simulations of light effects on the human circadian pacemaker: implications for assessment of intrinsic period

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Klerman, E. B.; Dijk, D. J.; Kronauer, R. E.; Czeisler, C. A.

    1996-01-01

    The sensitivity of the human circadian system to light has been the subject of considerable debate. Using computer simulations of a recent quantitative model for the effects of light on the human circadian system, we investigated these effects of light during different experimental protocols. The results of the simulations indicate that the nonuniform distribution over the circadian cycle of exposure to ordinary room light seen in classical free-run studies, in which subjects select their exposure to light and darkness, can result in an observed period of approximately 25 h, even when the intrinsic period of the subject's endogenous circadian pacemaker is much closer to 24 h. Other simulation results suggest that accurate assessment of the true intrinsic period of the human circadian pacemaker requires low ambient light intensities (approximately 10-15 lx) during scheduled wake episodes, desynchrony of the imposed light-dark cycle from the endogenous circadian oscillator, and a study length of at least 20 days. Although these simulations await further experimental substantiation, they highlight the sensitivity to light of the human circadian system and the potential confounding influence of light on the assessment of the intrinsic period of the circadian pacemaker.

  16. Light-Induced Changes of the Circadian Clock of Humans: Increasing Duration is More Effective than Increasing Light Intensity

    PubMed Central

    Dewan, Karuna; Benloucif, Susan; Reid, Kathryn; Wolfe, Lisa F.; Zee, Phyllis C.

    2011-01-01

    Study Objectives: To evaluate the effect of increasing the intensity and/or duration of exposure on light-induced changes in the timing of the circadian clock of humans. Design: Multifactorial randomized controlled trial, between and within subject design Setting: General Clinical Research Center (GCRC) of an academic medical center Participants: 56 healthy young subjects (20-40 years of age) Interventions: Research subjects were admitted for 2 independent stays of 4 nights/3 days for treatment with bright or dim-light (randomized order) at a time known to induce phase delays in circadian timing. The intensity and duration of the bright light were determined by random assignment to one of 9 treatment conditions (duration of 1, 2, or 3 hours at 2000, 4000, or 8000 lux). Measurements and Results: Treatment-induced changes in the dim light melatonin onset (DLMO) and dim light melatonin offset (DLMOff) were measured from blood samples collected every 20-30 min throughout baseline and post-treatment nights. Comparison by multi-factor analysis of variance (ANOVA) of light-induced changes in the time of the circadian melatonin rhythm for the 9 conditions revealed that changing the duration of the light exposure from 1 to 3 h increased the magnitude of light-induced delays. In contrast, increasing from moderate (2,000 lux) to high (8,000 lux) intensity light did not alter the magnitude of phase delays of the circadian melatonin rhythm. Conclusions: Results from the present study suggest that for phototherapy of circadian rhythm sleep disorders in humans, a longer period of moderate intensity light may be more effective than a shorter exposure period of high intensity light. Citation: Dewan K; Benloucif S; Reid K; Wolfe LF; Zee PC. Light-induced changes of the circadian clock of humans: increasing duration is more effective than increasing light intensity. SLEEP 2011;34(5):593-599. PMID:21532952

  17. Circadian clock and cardiac vulnerability: A time stamp on multi-scale neuroautonomic regulation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ivanov, Plamen Ch.

    2005-03-01

    Cardiovascular vulnerability displays a 24-hour pattern with a peak between 9AM and 11AM. This daily pattern in cardiac risk is traditionally attributed to external factors including activity levels and sleep-wake cycles. However,influences from the endogenous circadian pacemaker independent from behaviors may also affect cardiac control. We investigate heartbeat dynamics in healthy subjects recorded throughout a 10-day protocol wherein the sleep/wake and behavior cycles are desynchronized from the endogenous circadian cycle,enabling assessment of circadian factors while controlling for behavior-related factors. We demonstrate that the scaling exponent characterizing temporal correlations in heartbeat dynamics over multiple time scales does exhibit a significant circadian rhythm with a sharp peak at the circadian phase corresponding to the period 9-11AM, and that this rhythm is independent from scheduled behaviors and mean heart rate. Our findings of strong circadian rhythms in the multi-scale heartbeat dynamics of healthy young subjects indicate that the underlying mechanism of cardiac regulation is strongly influenced by the endogenous circadian pacemaker. A similar circadian effect in vulnerable individuals with underlying cardiovascular disease would contribute to the morning peak of adverse cardiac events observed in epidemiological studies.

  18. Advancing Human Circadian Rhythms with Afternoon Melatonin and Morning Intermittent Bright Light

    PubMed Central

    Revell, Victoria L.; Burgess, Helen J.; Gazda, Clifford J.; Smith, Mark R.; Fogg, Louis F.; Eastman, Charmane I.

    2013-01-01

    Context Both light and melatonin can be used to phase shift the human circadian clock, but the phase advancing effect of the combination has not been extensively investigated. Objective The objective of the study was to determine whether phase advances induced by morning intermittent bright light and a gradually advancing sleep schedule could be increased with afternoon melatonin. Participants Healthy adults (25 males, 19 females, between the ages of 19 and 45 yr) participated in the study. Design There were 3 d of a gradually advancing sleep/dark period (wake time 1 h earlier each morning), bright light on awakening [ four 30-min bright-light pulses (∼5000 lux) alternating with 30 min room light < 60 lux] and afternoon melatonin, either 0.5 or 3.0 mg melatonin timed to induce maximal phase advances, or matching placebo. The dim light melatonin onset was measured before and after the treatment to determine the phase advance. Results There were significantly larger phase advances with 0.5 mg (2.5 h, n = 16) and 3.0 mg melatonin (2.6 h, n = 13), compared with placebo (1.7 h, n = 15), but there was no difference between the two melatonin doses. Subjects did not experience jet lag-type symptoms during the 3-d treatment Conclusions Afternoon melatonin, morning intermittent bright light, and a gradually advancing sleep schedule advanced circadian rhythms almost 1 h/d and thus produced very little circadian misalignment. This treatment could be used in any situation in which people need to phase advance their circadian clock, such as before eastward jet travel or for delayed sleep phase syndrome. PMID:16263827

  19. Effects of exposure to intermittent versus continuous red light on human circadian rhythms, melatonin suppression, and pupillary constriction.

    PubMed

    Ho Mien, Ivan; Chua, Eric Chern-Pin; Lau, Pauline; Tan, Luuan-Chin; Lee, Ivan Tian-Guang; Yeo, Sing-Chen; Tan, Sara Shuhui; Gooley, Joshua J

    2014-01-01

    Exposure to light is a major determinant of sleep timing and hormonal rhythms. The role of retinal cones in regulating circadian physiology remains unclear, however, as most studies have used light exposures that also activate the photopigment melanopsin. Here, we tested the hypothesis that exposure to alternating red light and darkness can enhance circadian resetting responses in humans by repeatedly activating cone photoreceptors. In a between-subjects study, healthy volunteers (n = 24, 21-28 yr) lived individually in a laboratory for 6 consecutive days. Circadian rhythms of melatonin, cortisol, body temperature, and heart rate were assessed before and after exposure to 6 h of continuous red light (631 nm, 13 log photons cm(-2) s(-1)), intermittent red light (1 min on/off), or bright white light (2,500 lux) near the onset of nocturnal melatonin secretion (n = 8 in each group). Melatonin suppression and pupillary constriction were also assessed during light exposure. We found that circadian resetting responses were similar for exposure to continuous versus intermittent red light (P = 0.69), with an average phase delay shift of almost an hour. Surprisingly, 2 subjects who were exposed to red light exhibited circadian responses similar in magnitude to those who were exposed to bright white light. Red light also elicited prolonged pupillary constriction, but did not suppress melatonin levels. These findings suggest that, for red light stimuli outside the range of sensitivity for melanopsin, cone photoreceptors can mediate circadian phase resetting of physiologic rhythms in some individuals. Our results also show that sensitivity thresholds differ across non-visual light responses, suggesting that cones may contribute differentially to circadian resetting, melatonin suppression, and the pupillary light reflex during exposure to continuous light. PMID:24797245

  20. Effects of Exposure to Intermittent versus Continuous Red Light on Human Circadian Rhythms, Melatonin Suppression, and Pupillary Constriction

    PubMed Central

    Ho Mien, Ivan; Chua, Eric Chern-Pin; Lau, Pauline; Tan, Luuan-Chin; Lee, Ivan Tian-Guang; Yeo, Sing-Chen; Tan, Sara Shuhui; Gooley, Joshua J.

    2014-01-01

    Exposure to light is a major determinant of sleep timing and hormonal rhythms. The role of retinal cones in regulating circadian physiology remains unclear, however, as most studies have used light exposures that also activate the photopigment melanopsin. Here, we tested the hypothesis that exposure to alternating red light and darkness can enhance circadian resetting responses in humans by repeatedly activating cone photoreceptors. In a between-subjects study, healthy volunteers (n = 24, 21–28 yr) lived individually in a laboratory for 6 consecutive days. Circadian rhythms of melatonin, cortisol, body temperature, and heart rate were assessed before and after exposure to 6 h of continuous red light (631 nm, 13 log photons cm−2 s−1), intermittent red light (1 min on/off), or bright white light (2,500 lux) near the onset of nocturnal melatonin secretion (n = 8 in each group). Melatonin suppression and pupillary constriction were also assessed during light exposure. We found that circadian resetting responses were similar for exposure to continuous versus intermittent red light (P = 0.69), with an average phase delay shift of almost an hour. Surprisingly, 2 subjects who were exposed to red light exhibited circadian responses similar in magnitude to those who were exposed to bright white light. Red light also elicited prolonged pupillary constriction, but did not suppress melatonin levels. These findings suggest that, for red light stimuli outside the range of sensitivity for melanopsin, cone photoreceptors can mediate circadian phase resetting of physiologic rhythms in some individuals. Our results also show that sensitivity thresholds differ across non-visual light responses, suggesting that cones may contribute differentially to circadian resetting, melatonin suppression, and the pupillary light reflex during exposure to continuous light. PMID:24797245

  1. Local modulation of human brain responses by circadian rhythmicity and sleep debt.

    PubMed

    Muto, Vincenzo; Jaspar, Mathieu; Meyer, Christelle; Kussé, Caroline; Chellappa, Sarah L; Degueldre, Christian; Balteau, Evelyne; Shaffii-Le Bourdiec, Anahita; Luxen, André; Middleton, Benita; Archer, Simon N; Phillips, Christophe; Collette, Fabienne; Vandewalle, Gilles; Dijk, Derk-Jan; Maquet, Pierre

    2016-08-12

    Human performance is modulated by circadian rhythmicity and homeostatic sleep pressure. Whether and how this interaction is represented at the regional brain level has not been established. We quantified changes in brain responses to a sustained-attention task during 13 functional magnetic resonance imaging sessions scheduled across the circadian cycle, during 42 hours of wakefulness and after recovery sleep, in 33 healthy participants. Cortical responses showed significant circadian rhythmicity, the phase of which varied across brain regions. Cortical responses also significantly decreased with accrued sleep debt. Subcortical areas exhibited primarily a circadian modulation that closely followed the melatonin profile. These findings expand our understanding of the mechanisms involved in maintaining cognition during the day and its deterioration during sleep deprivation and circadian misalignment. PMID:27516598

  2. The ancestral circadian clock of monarch butterflies: role in time-compensated sun compass orientation.

    PubMed

    Reppert, S M

    2007-01-01

    The circadian clock has a vital role in monarch butterfly (Danaus plexippus) migration by providing the timing component of time-compensated sun compass orientation, which contributes to navigation to the overwintering grounds. The location of circadian clock cells in monarch brain has been identified in the dorsolateral protocerebrum (pars lateralis); these cells express PERIOD, TIMELESS, and a Drosophila-like cryptochrome designated CRY1. Monarch butterflies, like all other nondrosophilid insects examined so far, express a second cry gene (designated insect CRY2) that encodes a vertebrate-like CRY that is also expressed in pars lateralis. An ancestral circadian clock mechanism has been defined in monarchs, in which CRY1 functions as a blue light photoreceptor for photic entrainment, whereas CRY2 functionswithin the clockwork as themajor transcriptional repressor of an intracellular negative transcriptional feedback loop. A CRY1-staining neural pathway has been identified that may connect the circadian (navigational) clock to polarized light input important for sun compass navigation, and a CRY2-positive neural pathway has been discovered that may communicate circadian information directly from the circadian clock to the central complex, the likely site of the sun compass. The monarch butterfly may thus use the CRY proteins as components of the circadian mechanism and also as output molecules that connect the clock to various aspects of the sun compass apparatus. PMID:18419268

  3. The effects of gravity on the circadian timing system.

    PubMed

    Fuller, C A

    1994-05-01

    The physiological system responsible for the temporal coordination of an organism is the circadian timing system (CTS). This system provides two forms of temporal coordination. First, the CTS provides for synchronization of the organism with the 24 hour period of the external environment. This synchronization of the organism with the environment is termed entrainment. Second, this system also provides for internal coordination of the various physiological, behavioral, and biochemical events within the organism. When either of these two temporal relationships are disturbed, various dysfunctions can be manifest within the organism. Homeostatic capacity of other physiological systems may be reduced. Performance is decreased and sleep disorders, mental health impairment (e.g., depression), jet lag syndrome, and shift work maladaptation frequently occur. Over the last several years, several studies have evaluated the potential influence of gravity on this physiological control system by examining changes in rhythmic characteristics of organisms exposed to altered gravitational environments. The altered gravitational environments have included the microgravity of spaceflight as well as hyperdynamic fields produced via centrifugation. PMID:11538728

  4. The effects of gravity on the circadian timing system

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Fuller, C. A.

    1994-01-01

    The physiological system responsible for the temporal coordination of an organism is the circadian timing system (CTS). This system provides two forms of temporal coordination. First, the CTS provides for synchronization of the organism with the 24 hour period of the external environment. This synchronization of the organism with the environment is termed entrainment. Second, this system also provides for internal coordination of the various physiological, behavioral, and biochemical events within the organism. When either of these two temporal relationships are disturbed, various dysfunctions can be manifest within the organism. Homeostatic capacity of other physiological systems may be reduced. Performance is decreased and sleep disorders, mental health impairment (e.g., depression), jet lag syndrome, and shift work maladaptation frequently occur. Over the last several years, several studies have evaluated the potential influence of gravity on this physiological control system by examining changes in rhythmic characteristics of organisms exposed to altered gravitational environments. The altered gravitational environments have included the microgravity of spaceflight as well as hyperdynamic fields produced via centrifugation.

  5. ATPase activity of KaiC determines the basic timing for circadian clock of cyanobacteria.

    PubMed

    Terauchi, Kazuki; Kitayama, Yohko; Nishiwaki, Taeko; Miwa, Kumiko; Murayama, Yoriko; Oyama, Tokitaka; Kondo, Takao

    2007-10-01

    Self-sustainable oscillation of KaiC phosphorylation has been reconstituted in vitro, demonstrating that this cycle is the basic time generator of the circadian clock of cyanobacteria. Here we show that the ATPase activity of KaiC satisfies the characteristics of the circadian oscillation, the period length, and the temperature compensation. KaiC possesses extremely weak but stable ATPase activity (15 molecules of ATP per day), and the addition of KaiA and KaiB makes the activity oscillate with a circadian period in vitro. The ATPase activity of KaiC is inherently temperature-invariant, suggesting that temperature compensation of the circadian period could be driven by this simple biochemical reaction. Moreover, the activities of wild-type KaiC and five period-mutant proteins are directly proportional to their in vivo circadian frequencies, indicating that the ATPase activity defines the circadian period. Thus, we propose that KaiC ATPase activity constitutes the most fundamental reaction underlying circadian periodicity in cyanobacteria. PMID:17901204

  6. The effect of real and simulated time-zone shifts upon the circadian rhythms of body temperature, plasma 11-hydroxycorticosteroids, and renal excretion in human subjects

    PubMed Central

    Elliott, Ann L.; Mills, J. N.; Minors, D. S.; Waterhouse, J. M.

    1972-01-01

    1. Observations were made upon five subjects who flew through 4½-6 time zones, four of them returning later to their starting point, and upon twenty-three subjects experiencing simulated 6 or 8 hr time zones shifts in either direction in an isolation unit. 2. Measurements were made of plasma concentration of 11-hydroxycorticosteroids, of body temperature, and of urinary excretion of sodium, potassium and chloride. Their rhythm was defined, where possible, by fitting a sine curve of period 24 hr to each separate 24-hr stretch of data and computing the acrophase, or maximum predicted by the sine curve. 3. The adaptation of the plasma steroid rhythm was assessed by the presence of a sharp fall in concentration after the sample collected around 08.00 hr. The time course of adaptation varied widely between individuals; it was usually largely complete by the fourth day after westward, and rather later after eastward, flights. After time shift the pattern often corresponded neither to an adapted nor to an unadapted one, and in a subject followed for many months after a real flight a normal amplitude only appeared 2-3 months after flight. 4. Temperature rhythm adapted by a movement of the acrophase, without change in amplitude, although on some days no rhythm could be observed. This movement was always substantial even on the first day, and was usually nearly complete by the fifth. 5. High nocturnal excretion of electrolyte was often seen in the early days after time shift, more notably after simulated westward flights. Adaptation of urinary electrolyte rhythms usually proceeded as with temperature, but the movement of the acrophase was slower, more variable between individuals, more erratic, and sometimes reversed after partial adaptation. On a few days there were two maxima corresponding to those expected on real and on experimental time. 6. Sodium excretion was much less regular than that of potassium, but adapted more rapidly to time shift, so that the two often

  7. Stability, precision, and near-24-hour period of the human circadian pacemaker

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Czeisler, C. A.; Duffy, J. F.; Shanahan, T. L.; Brown, E. N.; Mitchell, J. F.; Rimmer, D. W.; Ronda, J. M.; Silva, E. J.; Allan, J. S.; Emens, J. S.; Dijk, D. J.; Kronauer, R. E.

    1999-01-01

    Regulation of circadian period in humans was thought to differ from that of other species, with the period of the activity rhythm reported to range from 13 to 65 hours (median 25.2 hours) and the period of the body temperature rhythm reported to average 25 hours in adulthood, and to shorten with age. However, those observations were based on studies of humans exposed to light levels sufficient to confound circadian period estimation. Precise estimation of the periods of the endogenous circadian rhythms of melatonin, core body temperature, and cortisol in healthy young and older individuals living in carefully controlled lighting conditions has now revealed that the intrinsic period of the human circadian pacemaker averages 24.18 hours in both age groups, with a tight distribution consistent with other species. These findings have important implications for understanding the pathophysiology of disrupted sleep in older people.

  8. Melatonin shifts human circadian rhythms according to a phase-response curve.

    PubMed

    Lewy, A J; Ahmed, S; Jackson, J M; Sack, R L

    1992-10-01

    A physiological dose of orally administered melatonin shifts circadian rhythms in humans according to a phase-response curve (PRC) that is nearly opposite in phase with the PRCs for light exposure: melatonin delays circadian rhythms when administered in the morning and advances them when administered in the afternoon or early evening. The human melatonin PRC provides critical information for using melatonin to treat circadian phase sleep and mood disorders, as well as maladaptation to shift work and transmeridional air travel. The human melatonin PRC also provides the strongest evidence to date for a function of endogenous melatonin and its suppression by light in augmenting entrainment of circadian rhythms by the light-dark cycle. PMID:1394610

  9. Gravitational biology and the mammalian circadian timing system

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Fuller, Charles A.; Murakami, Dean M.; Sulzman, Frank M.

    1989-01-01

    Using published reports, this paper compares and contrasts results on the effects of altered gravitational fields on the regulation in mammals of several physiological and behavioral variables with the circadian regulation of the same variables. The variables considered include the temperature regulation, heart rate, activity, food intake, and calcium balance. It is shown that, in rats, the homeostatic regulation of the body temperature, heart rate, and activity becomes depressed following exposure to a 2 G hyperdynamic field, and recovers within 6 days of 1 G condition. In addition, the circadian rhythms of these variables exhibit a depression of the rhythm amplitude; a recovery of this condition requires a minimum of 7 days.

  10. Human Gut Bacteria Are Sensitive to Melatonin and Express Endogenous Circadian Rhythmicity

    PubMed Central

    Paulose, Jiffin K.; Wright, John M.; Patel, Akruti G; Cassone, Vincent M.

    2016-01-01

    Circadian rhythms are fundamental properties of most eukaryotes, but evidence of biological clocks that drive these rhythms in prokaryotes has been restricted to Cyanobacteria. In vertebrates, the gastrointestinal system expresses circadian patterns of gene expression, motility and secretion in vivo and in vitro, and recent studies suggest that the enteric microbiome is regulated by the host’s circadian clock. However, it is not clear how the host’s clock regulates the microbiome. Here, we demonstrate at least one species of commensal bacterium from the human gastrointestinal system, Enterobacter aerogenes, is sensitive to the neurohormone melatonin, which is secreted into the gastrointestinal lumen, and expresses circadian patterns of swarming and motility. Melatonin specifically increases the magnitude of swarming in cultures of E. aerogenes, but not in Escherichia coli or Klebsiella pneumoniae. The swarming appears to occur daily, and transformation of E. aerogenes with a flagellar motor-protein driven lux plasmid confirms a temperature-compensated circadian rhythm of luciferase activity, which is synchronized in the presence of melatonin. Altogether, these data demonstrate a circadian clock in a non-cyanobacterial prokaryote and suggest the human circadian system may regulate its microbiome through the entrainment of bacterial clocks. PMID:26751389

  11. Human Peripheral Clocks: Applications for Studying Circadian Phenotypes in Physiology and Pathophysiology

    PubMed Central

    Saini, Camille; Brown, Steven A.; Dibner, Charna

    2015-01-01

    Most light-sensitive organisms on earth have acquired an internal system of circadian clocks allowing the anticipation of light or darkness. In humans, the circadian system governs nearly all aspects of physiology and behavior. Circadian phenotypes, including chronotype, vary dramatically among individuals and over individual lifespan. Recent studies have revealed that the characteristics of human skin fibroblast clocks correlate with donor chronotype. Given the complexity of circadian phenotype assessment in humans, the opportunity to study oscillator properties by using cultured primary cells has the potential to uncover molecular details difficult to assess directly in humans. Since altered properties of the circadian oscillator have been associated with many diseases including metabolic disorders and cancer, clock characteristics assessed in additional primary cell types using similar technologies might represent an important tool for exploring the connection between chronotype and disease, and for diagnostic purposes. Here, we review implications of this approach for gathering insights into human circadian rhythms and their function in health and disease. PMID:26029154

  12. Circadian time-place learning in mice depends on Cry genes.

    PubMed

    Van der Zee, Eddy A; Havekes, Robbert; Barf, R Paulien; Hut, Roelof A; Nijholt, Ingrid M; Jacobs, Edwin H; Gerkema, Menno P

    2008-06-01

    Endogenous biological clocks allow organisms to anticipate daily environmental cycles. The ability to achieve time-place associations is key to the survival and reproductive success of animals. The ability to link the location of a stimulus (usually food) with time of day has been coined time-place learning, but its circadian nature was only shown in honeybees and birds. So far, an unambiguous circadian time-place-learning paradigm for mammals is lacking. We studied whether expression of the clock gene Cryptochrome (Cry), crucial for circadian timing, is a prerequisite for time-place learning. Time-place learning in mice was achieved by developing a novel paradigm in which food reward at specific times of day was counterbalanced by the penalty of receiving a mild footshock. Mice lacking the core clock genes Cry1 and Cry2 (Cry double knockout mice; Cry1(-/-)Cry2(-/-)) learned to avoid unpleasant sensory experiences (mild footshock) and could locate a food reward in a spatial learning task (place preference). These mice failed, however, to learn time-place associations. This specific learning and memory deficit shows that a Cry-gene dependent circadian timing system underlies the utilization of time of day information. These results reveal a new functional role of the mammalian circadian timing system. PMID:18514517

  13. Sex differences in the circadian regulation of sleep and waking cognition in humans.

    PubMed

    Santhi, Nayantara; Lazar, Alpar S; McCabe, Patrick J; Lo, June C; Groeger, John A; Dijk, Derk-Jan

    2016-05-10

    The sleep-wake cycle and circadian rhythmicity both contribute to brain function, but whether this contribution differs between men and women and how it varies across cognitive domains and subjective dimensions has not been established. We examined the circadian and sleep-wake-dependent regulation of cognition in 16 men and 18 women in a forced desynchrony protocol and quantified the separate contributions of circadian phase, prior sleep, and elapsed time awake on cognition and sleep. The largest circadian effects were observed for reported sleepiness, mood, and reported effort; the effects on working memory and temporal processing were smaller. Although these effects were seen in both men and women, there were quantitative differences. The amplitude of the circadian modulation was larger in women in 11 of 39 performance measures so that their performance was more impaired in the early morning hours. Principal components analysis of the performance measures yielded three factors, accuracy, effort, and speed, which reflect core performance characteristics in a range of cognitive tasks and therefore are likely to be important for everyday performance. The largest circadian modulation was observed for effort, whereas accuracy exhibited the largest sex difference in circadian modulation. The sex differences in the circadian modulation of cognition could not be explained by sex differences in the circadian amplitude of plasma melatonin and electroencephalographic slow-wave activity. These data establish the impact of circadian rhythmicity and sex on waking cognition and have implications for understanding the regulation of brain function, cognition, and affect in shift-work, jetlag, and aging. PMID:27091961

  14. Sex differences in the circadian regulation of sleep and waking cognition in humans

    PubMed Central

    Santhi, Nayantara; Lazar, Alpar S.; McCabe, Patrick J.; Lo, June C.; Groeger, John A.; Dijk, Derk-Jan

    2016-01-01

    The sleep–wake cycle and circadian rhythmicity both contribute to brain function, but whether this contribution differs between men and women and how it varies across cognitive domains and subjective dimensions has not been established. We examined the circadian and sleep–wake-dependent regulation of cognition in 16 men and 18 women in a forced desynchrony protocol and quantified the separate contributions of circadian phase, prior sleep, and elapsed time awake on cognition and sleep. The largest circadian effects were observed for reported sleepiness, mood, and reported effort; the effects on working memory and temporal processing were smaller. Although these effects were seen in both men and women, there were quantitative differences. The amplitude of the circadian modulation was larger in women in 11 of 39 performance measures so that their performance was more impaired in the early morning hours. Principal components analysis of the performance measures yielded three factors, accuracy, effort, and speed, which reflect core performance characteristics in a range of cognitive tasks and therefore are likely to be important for everyday performance. The largest circadian modulation was observed for effort, whereas accuracy exhibited the largest sex difference in circadian modulation. The sex differences in the circadian modulation of cognition could not be explained by sex differences in the circadian amplitude of plasma melatonin and electroencephalographic slow-wave activity. These data establish the impact of circadian rhythmicity and sex on waking cognition and have implications for understanding the regulation of brain function, cognition, and affect in shift-work, jetlag, and aging. PMID:27091961

  15. [Estimation of death time by measurement of circadian melatonin rhythm].

    PubMed

    Mikami, H

    1993-05-01

    In order to establish a method for the estimation of death time (DT) from measuring melatonin (MT) contents in pineal bodies (PBs) and biological fluids, 85 cadavers were investigated--44 dead in Sapporo (N 43 degrees 4', E 141 degrees 21') and 41 in Tokyo (N 35 degrees 39', E 139 degrees 44'). MT contents were measured by radioimmunoassay in 76 PBs, 27 sera and 14 urines. Exponential differences were recognized between peaks in nighttime and nadirs in daytime of pineal MT contents, i. e., ranging 0.099-63.158 ng per PB and 1.2-609.6 pg/mg. Circadian rhythms were also observed on the concentrations of MT in serum (11-205 pg/ml), and in urine (7.5-137.5 pg/ml). Consequently, criteria of the DT estimation were proposed as follows. 1) Pineal MT contents--(1) 0-0.2 ng/PB:DT 11:00-17:00, (2) 0.2-0.3 ng/PB:DT 7:00-20:00, (3) 0.3-1 ng/PB: incapable of DT estimation, (4) 1-4 ng/PB:DT 16:00-10:00, (5) 4-8 ng/PB:DT 20:00-8:00, (6) 8 ng/PB over: DT 20:00-5:00, 2) Serum MT concentration--(1) 0-100 pg/ml: incapable of DT estimation, (2) 100pg/ml over: DT 22:00-1:00, and 3) Urinary MT concentration--(1) 0-35pg/ml: incapable of DT estimation, (2) 35 g/ml over: DT 18:00-6:00. Furthermore, width of the estimation is able to be narrowed by the combination of these three criteria. The present method is very useful in narrowing the width of DT estimation which has been usually carried out by observing the progress of cadaveric phenomena on and in dead bodies. PMID:8319934

  16. A statistical model of the human core-temperature circadian rhythm

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Brown, E. N.; Choe, Y.; Luithardt, H.; Czeisler, C. A.

    2000-01-01

    We formulate a statistical model of the human core-temperature circadian rhythm in which the circadian signal is modeled as a van der Pol oscillator, the thermoregulatory response is represented as a first-order autoregressive process, and the evoked effect of activity is modeled with a function specific for each circadian protocol. The new model directly links differential equation-based simulation models and harmonic regression analysis methods and permits statistical analysis of both static and dynamical properties of the circadian pacemaker from experimental data. We estimate the model parameters by using numerically efficient maximum likelihood algorithms and analyze human core-temperature data from forced desynchrony, free-run, and constant-routine protocols. By representing explicitly the dynamical effects of ambient light input to the human circadian pacemaker, the new model can estimate with high precision the correct intrinsic period of this oscillator ( approximately 24 h) from both free-run and forced desynchrony studies. Although the van der Pol model approximates well the dynamical features of the circadian pacemaker, the optimal dynamical model of the human biological clock may have a harmonic structure different from that of the van der Pol oscillator.

  17. Involvement of dopamine signaling in the circadian modulation of interval timing.

    PubMed

    Bussi, Ivana L; Levín, Gloria; Golombek, Diego A; Agostino, Patricia V

    2014-07-01

    Duration discrimination within the seconds-to-minutes range, known as interval timing, involves the interaction of cortico-striatal circuits via dopaminergic-glutamatergic pathways. Besides interval timing, most (if not all) organisms exhibit circadian rhythms in physiological, metabolic and behavioral functions with periods close to 24 h. We have previously reported that both circadian disruption and desynchronization impaired interval timing in mice. In this work we studied the involvement of dopamine (DA) signaling in the interaction between circadian and interval timing. We report that daily injections of levodopa improved timing performance in the peak-interval procedure in C57BL/6 mice with circadian disruptions, suggesting that a daily increase of DA is necessary for an accurate performance in the timing task. Moreover, striatal DA levels measured by reverse-phase high-pressure liquid chromatography indicated a daily rhythm under light/dark conditions. This daily variation was affected by inducing circadian disruption under constant light (LL). We also demonstrated a daily oscillation in tyrosine hydroxylase levels, DA turnover (3,4-dihydroxyphenylacetic acid/DA levels), and both mRNA and protein levels of the circadian component Period2 (Per2) in the striatum and substantia nigra, two brain areas relevant for interval timing. None of these oscillations persisted under LL conditions. We suggest that the lack of DA rhythmicity in the striatum under LL - probably regulated by Per2 - could be responsible for impaired performance in the timing task. Our findings add further support to the notion that circadian and interval timing share some common processes, interacting at the level of the dopaminergic system. PMID:24689904

  18. Circadian regulation of slow waves in human sleep: Topographical aspects

    PubMed Central

    Lazar, Alpar S.; Lazar, Zsolt I.; Dijk, Derk-Jan

    2015-01-01

    Slow waves (SWs, 0.5–4 Hz) in field potentials during sleep reflect synchronized alternations between bursts of action potentials and periods of membrane hyperpolarization of cortical neurons. SWs decline during sleep and this is thought to be related to a reduction of synaptic strength in cortical networks and to be central to sleep's role in maintaining brain function. A central assumption in current concepts of sleep function is that SWs during sleep, and associated recovery processes, are independent of circadian rhythmicity. We tested this hypothesis by quantifying all SWs from 12 EEG derivations in 34 participants in whom 231 sleep periods were scheduled across the circadian cycle in a 10-day forced-desynchrony protocol which allowed estimation of the separate circadian and sleep-dependent modulation of SWs. Circadian rhythmicity significantly modulated the incidence, amplitude, frequency and the slope of the SWs such that the peaks of the circadian rhythms in these slow-wave parameters were located during the biological day. Topographical analyses demonstrated that the sleep-dependent modulation of SW characteristics was most prominent in frontal brain areas whereas the circadian effect was similar to or greater than the sleep-dependent modulation over the central and posterior brain regions. The data demonstrate that circadian rhythmicity directly modulates characteristics of SWs thought to be related to synaptic plasticity and that this modulation depends on topography. These findings have implications for the understanding of local sleep regulation and conditions such as ageing, depression, and neurodegeneration which are associated with changes in SWs, neural plasticity and circadian rhythmicity. PMID:25979664

  19. Circadian regulation of slow waves in human sleep: Topographical aspects.

    PubMed

    Lazar, Alpar S; Lazar, Zsolt I; Dijk, Derk-Jan

    2015-08-01

    Slow waves (SWs, 0.5-4Hz) in field potentials during sleep reflect synchronized alternations between bursts of action potentials and periods of membrane hyperpolarization of cortical neurons. SWs decline during sleep and this is thought to be related to a reduction of synaptic strength in cortical networks and to be central to sleep's role in maintaining brain function. A central assumption in current concepts of sleep function is that SWs during sleep, and associated recovery processes, are independent of circadian rhythmicity. We tested this hypothesis by quantifying all SWs from 12 EEG derivations in 34 participants in whom 231 sleep periods were scheduled across the circadian cycle in a 10-day forced-desynchrony protocol which allowed estimation of the separate circadian and sleep-dependent modulation of SWs. Circadian rhythmicity significantly modulated the incidence, amplitude, frequency and the slope of the SWs such that the peaks of the circadian rhythms in these slow-wave parameters were located during the biological day. Topographical analyses demonstrated that the sleep-dependent modulation of SW characteristics was most prominent in frontal brain areas whereas the circadian effect was similar to or greater than the sleep-dependent modulation over the central and posterior brain regions. The data demonstrate that circadian rhythmicity directly modulates characteristics of SWs thought to be related to synaptic plasticity and that this modulation depends on topography. These findings have implications for the understanding of local sleep regulation and conditions such as ageing, depression, and neurodegeneration which are associated with changes in SWs, neural plasticity and circadian rhythmicity. PMID:25979664

  20. Decreased human circadian pacemaker influence after 100 days in space: a case study

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Monk, T. H.; Kennedy, K. S.; Rose, L. R.; Linenger, J. M.

    2001-01-01

    OBJECTIVE: The objectives of this study were (1) to assess the circadian rhythms and sleep of a healthy, 42-year-old male astronaut experiencing microgravity (weightlessness) for nearly 5 months while living aboard Space Station Mir as it orbited Earth and (2) to determine the effects of prolonged space flight on the endogenous circadian pacemaker, as indicated by oral temperature and subjective alertness rhythms, and their ramifications for sleep, alertness, and performance. METHODS: For three 12- to 14-day blocks of time (spread throughout the mission), oral temperatures were taken and subjective alertness was self-rated five times per day. Sleep diaries and performance tests were also completed daily during each block. RESULTS: Examination of the subject's circadian alertness and oral temperature rhythms suggested that the endogenous circadian pacemaker seemed to function quite well up to 90 days in space. Thereafter (on days 110-122), the influence of the endogenous circadian pacemaker on oral temperature and subjective alertness circadian rhythms was considerably weakened, with consequent disruptions in sleep. CONCLUSIONS: Space missions lasting more than 3 months might result in diminished circadian pacemaker influence in astronauts, leading to eventual sleep problems.

  1. Circadian rhythm and its role in malignancy

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Circadian rhythms are daily oscillations of multiple biological processes directed by endogenous clocks. The circadian timing system comprises peripheral oscillators located in most tissues of the body and a central pacemaker located in the suprachiasmatic nucleus (SCN) of the hypothalamus. Circadian genes and the proteins produced by these genes constitute the molecular components of the circadian oscillator which form positive/negative feedback loops and generate circadian rhythms. The circadian regulation extends beyond clock genes to involve various clock-controlled genes (CCGs) including various cell cycle genes. Aberrant expression of circadian clock genes could have important consequences on the transactivation of downstream targets that control the cell cycle and on the ability of cells to undergo apoptosis. This may lead to genomic instability and accelerated cellular proliferation potentially promoting carcinogenesis. Different lines of evidence in mice and humans suggest that cancer may be a circadian-related disorder. The genetic or functional disruption of the molecular circadian clock has been found in various cancers including breast, ovarian, endometrial, prostate and hematological cancers. The acquisition of current data in circadian clock mechanism may help chronotherapy, which takes into consideration the biological time to improve treatments by devising new therapeutic approaches for treating circadian-related disorders, especially cancer. PMID:20353609

  2. The Ticking Clock of Cayo Santiago Macaques and Its Implications for Understanding Human Circadian Rhythm Disorders

    PubMed Central

    Rogers, Jeffrey; Gonzalez-Martinez, Janis; Farrer, Lindsay A.

    2016-01-01

    The circadian clock disorders in humans remain poorly understood. However, their impact on the development and progression of major human conditions, from cancer to insomnia, metabolic or mental illness becomes increasingly apparent. Addressing human circadian disorders in animal models is, in part, complicated by inverse temporal relationship between the core clock and specific physiological or behavioral processes in diurnal and nocturnal animals. Major advantages of a macaque model for translational circadian research, as a diurnal vertebrate phylogenetically close to humans, are further emphasized by the discovery of the first familial circadian disorder in non-human primates among the rhesus monkeys originating from Cayo Santiago. The remarkable similarity of their pathological phenotypes to human Delayed Sleep Phase Disorder (DSPD), high penetrance of the disorder within one branch of the colony and the large number of animals available provide outstanding opportunities for studying the mechanisms of circadian disorders, their impact on other pathological conditions, and for the development of novel and effective treatment strategies. PMID:25940511

  3. Electric light, particularly at night, disrupts human circadian rhythmicity: is that a problem?

    PubMed

    Stevens, Richard G; Zhu, Yong

    2015-05-01

    Over the past 3 billion years, an endogenous circadian rhythmicity has developed in almost all life forms in which daily oscillations in physiology occur. This allows for anticipation of sunrise and sunset. This physiological rhythmicity is kept at precisely 24 h by the daily cycle of sunlight and dark. However, since the introduction of electric lighting, there has been inadequate light during the day inside buildings for a robust resetting of the human endogenous circadian rhythmicity, and too much light at night for a true dark to be detected; this results in circadian disruption and alters sleep/wake cycle, core body temperature, hormone regulation and release, and patterns of gene expression throughout the body. The question is the extent to which circadian disruption compromises human health, and can account for a portion of the modern pandemics of breast and prostate cancers, obesity, diabetes and depression. As societies modernize (i.e. electrify) these conditions increase in prevalence. There are a number of promising leads on putative mechanisms, and epidemiological findings supporting an aetiologic role for electric lighting in disease causation. These include melatonin suppression, circadian gene expression, and connection of circadian rhythmicity to metabolism in part affected by haem iron intake and distribution. PMID:25780233

  4. Electric light, particularly at night, disrupts human circadian rhythmicity: is that a problem?

    PubMed Central

    Stevens, Richard G.; Zhu, Yong

    2015-01-01

    Over the past 3 billion years, an endogenous circadian rhythmicity has developed in almost all life forms in which daily oscillations in physiology occur. This allows for anticipation of sunrise and sunset. This physiological rhythmicity is kept at precisely 24 h by the daily cycle of sunlight and dark. However, since the introduction of electric lighting, there has been inadequate light during the day inside buildings for a robust resetting of the human endogenous circadian rhythmicity, and too much light at night for a true dark to be detected; this results in circadian disruption and alters sleep/wake cycle, core body temperature, hormone regulation and release, and patterns of gene expression throughout the body. The question is the extent to which circadian disruption compromises human health, and can account for a portion of the modern pandemics of breast and prostate cancers, obesity, diabetes and depression. As societies modernize (i.e. electrify) these conditions increase in prevalence. There are a number of promising leads on putative mechanisms, and epidemiological findings supporting an aetiologic role for electric lighting in disease causation. These include melatonin suppression, circadian gene expression, and connection of circadian rhythmicity to metabolism in part affected by haem iron intake and distribution. PMID:25780233

  5. Circadian Regulation of Kisspeptin in Female Reproductive Functioning

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    Female reproductive functioning requires the precise temporal organization of numerous neuroendocrine events by a master circadian brain clock located in the suprachiasmatic nucleus. Across species, including humans, disruptions to circadian timing result in pronounced deficits in ovulation and fecundity. The present chapter provides an overview of the circadian control of female reproduction, underscoring the significance of kisspeptin as a key locus of integration for circadian and steroidal signaling necessary for the initiation of ovulation. PMID:23550016

  6. Running on time: the role of circadian clocks in the musculoskeletal system

    PubMed Central

    Dudek, Michal; Meng, Qing-Jun

    2014-01-01

    The night and day cycle governs the circadian (24 hourly) rhythm of activity and rest in animals and humans. This is reflected in daily changes of the global gene expression pattern and metabolism, but also in the local physiology of various tissues. A central clock in the brain co-ordinates the rhythmic locomotion behaviour, as well as synchronizing various local oscillators, such as those found in the musculoskeletal system. It has become increasingly recognized that the internal molecular clocks in cells allow a tissue to anticipate the rhythmic changes in their local environment and the specific demands of that tissue. Consequently, the majority of the rhythmic clock controlled genes and pathways are tissue specific. The concept of the tissue-specific function of circadian clocks is further supported by the diverse musculoskeletal phenotypes in mice with deletions or mutations of various core clock components, ranging from increased bone mass, dwarfism, arthropathy, reduced muscle strength and tendon calcification. The present review summarizes the current understanding of the circadian clocks in muscle, bone, cartilage and tendon tissues, with particular focus on the evidence of circadian rhythms in tissue physiology, their entrainment mechanisms and disease links, and the tissue-specific clock target genes/pathways. Research in this area holds strong potential to advance our understanding of how circadian rhythms control the health and disease of the musculoskeletal tissues, which has major implications in diseases associated with advancing age. It could also have potential implications in sports performance and sports medicine. PMID:25195734

  7. Running on time: the role of circadian clocks in the musculoskeletal system.

    PubMed

    Dudek, Michal; Meng, Qing-Jun

    2014-10-01

    The night and day cycle governs the circadian (24 hourly) rhythm of activity and rest in animals and humans. This is reflected in daily changes of the global gene expression pattern and metabolism, but also in the local physiology of various tissues. A central clock in the brain co-ordinates the rhythmic locomotion behaviour, as well as synchronizing various local oscillators, such as those found in the musculoskeletal system. It has become increasingly recognized that the internal molecular clocks in cells allow a tissue to anticipate the rhythmic changes in their local environment and the specific demands of that tissue. Consequently, the majority of the rhythmic clock controlled genes and pathways are tissue specific. The concept of the tissue-specific function of circadian clocks is further supported by the diverse musculoskeletal phenotypes in mice with deletions or mutations of various core clock components, ranging from increased bone mass, dwarfism, arthropathy, reduced muscle strength and tendon calcification. The present review summarizes the current understanding of the circadian clocks in muscle, bone, cartilage and tendon tissues, with particular focus on the evidence of circadian rhythms in tissue physiology, their entrainment mechanisms and disease links, and the tissue-specific clock target genes/pathways. Research in this area holds strong potential to advance our understanding of how circadian rhythms control the health and disease of the musculoskeletal tissues, which has major implications in diseases associated with advancing age. It could also have potential implications in sports performance and sports medicine. PMID:25195734

  8. Dose-response relationships for resetting of human circadian clock by light

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Boivin, D. B.; Duffy, J. F.; Kronauer, R. E.; Czeisler, C. A.

    1996-01-01

    Since the first report in unicells, studies across diverse species have demonstrated that light is a powerful synchronizer which resets, in an intensity-dependent manner, endogenous circadian pacemakers. Although it is recognized that bright light (approximately 7,000 to 13,000 lux) is an effective circadian synchronizer in humans, it is widely believed that the human circadian pacemaker is insensitive to ordinary indoor illumination (approximately 50-300 lux). It has been proposed that the relationship between the resetting effect of light and its intensity follows a compressive nonlinear function, such that exposure to lower illuminances still exerts a robust effect. We therefore undertook a series of experiments which support this hypothesis and report here that light of even relatively low intensity (approximately 180 lux) significantly phase-shifts the human circadian pacemaker. Our results clearly demonstrate that humans are much more sensitive to light than initially suspected and support the conclusion that they are not qualitatively different from other mammals in their mechanism of circadian entrainment.

  9. Human circadian pacemaker is sensitive to light throughout subjective day without evidence of transients

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Jewett, M. E.; Rimmer, D. W.; Duffy, J. F.; Klerman, E. B.; Kronauer, R. E.; Czeisler, C. A.

    1997-01-01

    Fifty-six resetting trials were conducted across the subjective day in 43 young men using a three-cycle bright-light (approximately 10,000 lx). The phase-response curve (PRC) to these trials was assessed for the presence of a "dead zone" of photic insensitivity and was compared with another three-cycle PRC that had used a background of approximately 150 lx. To assess possible transients after the light stimulus, the trials were divided into 43 steady-state trials, which occurred after several baseline days, and 13 consecutive trials, which occurred immediately after a previous resetting trial. We found that 1) bright light induces phase shifts throughout subjective day with no apparent dead zone; 2) there is no evidence of transients in constant routine assessments of the fitted temperature minimum 1-2 days after completion of the resetting stimulus; and 3) the timing of background room light modulates the resetting response to bright light. These data indicate that the human circadian pacemaker is sensitive to light at virtually all circadian phases, implying that the entire 24-h pattern of light exposure contributes to entrainment.

  10. Dose-Dependent Effects of Androgens on the Circadian Timing System and Its Response to Light

    PubMed Central

    Butler, Matthew P.; Karatsoreos, Ilia N.; LeSauter, Joseph

    2012-01-01

    The hypothalamic suprachiasmatic nucleus (SCN) is the locus of a master clock that regulates circadian rhythms in physiology and behavior. Gonadectomy in male mice lengthens the period of circadian rhythms and increases the day-to-day variability of activity onset time. Both of these responses are rescued by the nonaromatizable androgen dihydrotestosterone. Androgen receptors (AR) are localized in SCN neurons that receive direct retinal input. To explore how androgens affect circadian clock function and its responsiveness to photic cues, we measured wheel-running behavior and SCN AR expression in intact, gonadectomized, and testosterone-replaced mice, held under various photic conditions. Gonadectomy lengthened circadian period in constant dim light but not in constant darkness. Increasing intensities of constant light parametrically increased circadian period, and this was potentiated at all intensities by gonadectomy. In contrast, gonadectomy did not alter light-induced pupil constriction, suggesting a nonretinal locus of hormone action. In hormone-replaced animals housed in constant darkness, T concentration was positively correlated with precision of activity onset and with SCN AR expression and negatively correlated with duration of activity. We infer the existence of two androgenic mechanisms: one modulates SCN responsiveness to light, and the second modulates SCN timekeeping and locomotor activity in a dose-dependent manner. Finally, the effects of androgens on period are a result of hormonal modulation of the SCN's response to photic input rather than to a change in the inherent period of oscillators in the absence of light. PMID:22492303

  11. Circadian Mechanisms in Murine and Human Bone Marrow Mesenchymal Stem Cells Following Dexamethasone Exposure

    PubMed Central

    Wu, Xiying; Yu, Gang; Parks, Helen; Hebert, Teddi; Goh, Brian C.; Dietrich, Marilyn A.; Pelled, Gadi; Izadpanah, Reza; Gazit, Dan; Bunnell, Bruce A.; Gimble, Jeffrey M.

    2008-01-01

    A core group of transcriptional regulatory factors regulate circadian rhythms in mammalian cells. While the suprachiasmatic nucleus in the brain serves as the central core circadian oscillator, circadian clocks also exist within peripheral tissues and cells. A growing body of evidence has demonstrated that >20% of expressed mRNAs in bone and adipose tissues oscillate in a circadian manner. The current manuscript reports evidence of the core circadian transcriptional apparatus within primary cultures of murine and human bone marrow-derived mesenchymal stem cells (BMSCs). Exposure of confluent, quiescent BMSCs to dexamethasone synchronized the oscillating expression of the mRNAs encoding the albumin D binding protein (dbp), brain-muscle arnt-like 1 (bmal1), period 3 (per3), rev-erb α, and rev-erb β. The genes displayed a mean oscillatory period of 22.2 to 24.3 hours. The acrophase or peak expression of mRNAs encoding “positive” (bmal1) and “negative” (per3) transcriptional regulatory factors were out of phase with each other by ∼8-12 hours, consistent with in vivo observations. In vivo, glycogen synthase kinase 3β (GSK3β) mediated phosphorylation regulates the turnover of per3 and core circadian transcriptional apparatus. In vitro addition of lithium chloride, a GSK3β inhibitor, significantly shifted the acrophase of all genes by 4.2-4.7 hours oscillation in BMSCs; however, only the male murine BMSCs displayed a significant increase in the length of the period of oscillation. We conclude that human and murine BMSCs represent a valid in vitro model for the analysis of circadian mechanisms in bone metabolism and stem cell biology. PMID:18302991

  12. Circadian Disorganization Alters Intestinal Microbiota

    PubMed Central

    Voigt, Robin M.; Forsyth, Christopher B.; Green, Stefan J.; Mutlu, Ece; Engen, Phillip; Vitaterna, Martha H.; Turek, Fred W.; Keshavarzian, Ali

    2014-01-01

    Intestinal dysbiosis and circadian rhythm disruption are associated with similar diseases including obesity, metabolic syndrome, and inflammatory bowel disease. Despite the overlap, the potential relationship between circadian disorganization and dysbiosis is unknown; thus, in the present study, a model of chronic circadian disruption was used to determine the impact on the intestinal microbiome. Male C57BL/6J mice underwent once weekly phase reversals of the light:dark cycle (i.e., circadian rhythm disrupted mice) to determine the impact of circadian rhythm disruption on the intestinal microbiome and were fed either standard chow or a high-fat, high-sugar diet to determine how diet influences circadian disruption-induced effects on the microbiome. Weekly phase reversals of the light:dark (LD) cycle did not alter the microbiome in mice fed standard chow; however, mice fed a high-fat, high-sugar diet in conjunction with phase shifts in the light:dark cycle had significantly altered microbiota. While it is yet to be established if some of the adverse effects associated with circadian disorganization in humans (e.g., shift workers, travelers moving across time zones, and in individuals with social jet lag) are mediated by dysbiosis, the current study demonstrates that circadian disorganization can impact the intestinal microbiota which may have implications for inflammatory diseases. PMID:24848969

  13. Measuring seasonal time within the circadian system: regulation of the suprachiasmatic nuclei by photoperiod.

    PubMed

    Johnston, J D

    2005-07-01

    Day-length (photoperiod) is the primary environmental signal used to synchronise endogenous rhythms of physiology and behaviour. In mammals, the suprachiasmatic nuclei (SCN) of the hypothalamus house the master circadian clock. The SCN incorporate photoperiodic information and therefore measure both daily and seasonal time. Over the past decade, there have been significant advances in the understanding of the molecular basis of circadian clocks. It is now becoming apparent that the core molecular clock mechanism is itself regulated by photoperiod, although there is currently debate as to how this occurs. One recent model proposes that distinct groups of core 'clock genes' are associated with either morning or evening phases of the daily light/dark cycle. However, the validity of associating particular genes to morning and evening has been questioned. This article reviews the evidence for photoperiodic regulation of circadian clock function and then discusses alternative models that may explain the available data. PMID:15946164

  14. Circadian and homeostatic modulation of functional connectivity and regional cerebral blood flow in humans under normal entrained conditions

    PubMed Central

    Hodkinson, Duncan J; O'Daly, Owen; Zunszain, Patricia A; Pariante, Carmine M; Lazurenko, Vitaly; Zelaya, Fernando O; Howard, Matthew A; Williams, Steven C R

    2014-01-01

    Diurnal rhythms have been observed in human behaviors as diverse as sleep, olfaction, and learning. Despite its potential impact, time of day is rarely considered when brain responses are studied by neuroimaging techniques. To address this issue, we explicitly examined the effects of circadian and homeostatic regulation on functional connectivity (FC) and regional cerebral blood flow (rCBF) in healthy human volunteers, using whole-brain resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging (rs-fMRI) and arterial spin labeling (ASL). In common with many circadian studies, we collected salivary cortisol to represent the normal circadian activity and functioning of the hypothalamic–pituitary–adrenal (HPA) axis. Intriguingly, the changes in FC and rCBF we observed indicated fundamental decreases in the functional integration of the default mode network (DMN) moving from morning to afternoon. Within the anterior cingulate cortex (ACC), our results indicate that morning cortisol levels are negatively correlated with rCBF. We hypothesize that the homeostatic mechanisms of the HPA axis has a role in modulating the functional integrity of the DMN (specifically, the ACC), and for the purposes of using fMRI as a tool to measure changes in disease processes or in response to treatment, we demonstrate that time of the day is important when interpreting resting-state data. PMID:24938404

  15. The impact of the circadian timing system on cardiovascular and metabolic function

    PubMed Central

    Morris, Christopher J.; Yang, Jessica N.; Scheer, Frank A. J. L.

    2013-01-01

    Epidemiological studies show that adverse cardiovascular events peak in the morning (i.e., between 6 AM and noon) and that shift work is associated with cardiovascular disease, obesity, and diabetes. The endogenous circadian timing system modulates certain cardiovascular risk markers to be highest (e.g., cortisol, nonlinear dynamic heart rate control, and platelet activation) or to respond most unfavorably to stressors such as exercise (e.g., epinephrine, norepinephrine, and vagal cardiac modulation) at an internal body time corresponding to the time of day when adverse cardiovascular events most likely occur. This indicates that the circadian timing system and its interaction with external cardiovascular stressors (e.g., physical activity) could contribute to the morning peak in adverse cardiovascular events. Moreover, circadian misalignment and simulated night work have adverse effects on cardiovascular and metabolic function. This suggests that misalignment between the behavioral cycle and the circadian timing system in shift workers contributes to that population’s increased risk for cardiometabolic disease. PMID:22877674

  16. The Influence of Circadian Type, Time of Day and Class Difficulty on Students' Grades

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    McElroy, Todd; Mosteller, Lynn

    2006-01-01

    Introduction: In this paper we investigate how students' class grades are affected by individual differences in circadian rhythm, class time-of-day and class difficulty. Method: Using a sample of university students, we assessed morningness and eveningness personality type, and then obtained students recalled classes as well as their…

  17. Development of the Circadian Timing System in Rat Pups Exposed to Microgravity during Gestation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Fuller, Charles A.

    2000-01-01

    Ten pregnant Sprague Dawley rat dams were exposed to spaceflight aboard the Space Shuttle (STS-70) for gestational days 11-20 (G 11-20; FILT group). Control dams were maintained in either a flight-like (FIDS group) or vivarium cage environment (VIV group) on earth. All dams had ad lib access to food and water and were exposed to a light-dark cycle consisting of 12 hours of light (- 30 lux) followed by 12 hours of darkness. The dams were closely monitored from G 22 until parturition. All pups were cross-fostered at birth; each foster dam had a litter of 10 pups. Pups remained with their foster dam until post-natal day 21 (PN 21). Pup body mass was measured twice weekly. At PN14 FILT pups had a smaller body mass than did the VIV pups (p < 0.01). Circadian rhythms of body temperature and activity of pups from two FILT dams (n = 8), two FIDS dams (n = 9) and two VIV dams (n = 7) were studied starting from age PN 21. All pups had circadian rhythms of temperature and activity at this age. There were no significant differences in rhythms between groups that could be attributed to microgravity exposure. We also examined the development of neural structures involved in circadian rhythmicity: the retina, the intergeniculate leaflet (IGL) and the circadian pacemaker, the suprachiasmatic nucleus (SCN). There were small differences between the flight and control groups at very early stages of development (G 20 and PN3) which indicated that the development of both the SCN and the IGL. These results indicate that exposure to the microgravity environment of spaceflight during this embryonic development period does not affect the development of the circadian rhythms of body temperature and activity, but may affect the early development of the neural structures involved in circadian timing.

  18. Endogenous Circadian Regulation of Pro-inflammatory Cytokines and Chemokines in the Presence of Bacterial Lipopolysaccharide in Humans

    PubMed Central

    Rahman, Shadab A.; Castanon-Cervantes, Oscar; Scheer, Frank A.J.L.; Shea, Steven A.; Czeisler, Charles A.; Davidson, Alec J.; Lockley, Steven W.

    2015-01-01

    Various aspects of immune response exhibit 24-hour variations suggesting that infection susceptibility and treatment efficacy may vary by time of day. Whether these 24-hour variations are endogenous or evoked by changes in environmental or behavioral conditions is not known. We assessed the endogenous circadian control and environmental and behavioral influences on ex-vivo lipopolysaccharide stimulation of whole blood in thirteen healthy participants under 48 hours of baseline conditions with standard sleep-wake schedules and 40–50 hours of constant environmental and behavioral (constant routine; CR) conditions. Significant 24-hour rhythms were observed under baseline conditions in Monocyte Chemotactic Protein, Granulocyte-Macrophage Colony-Stimulating Factor and Interleukin 8 but not Tumor Necrosis Factor alpha whereas significant 24-hour rhythms were observed in all four immune factors under CR conditions. The rhythm amplitudes, expressed as a percentage of mean, were comparable between immune factors and across conditions. In contrast, the acrophase time (time of the fitted peak) was different between immune factors, and included daytime and nighttime peaks and changes across behavioral conditions. These results suggest that the endogenous circadian system underpins the temporal organization of immune responses in humans with additional effects of external environmental and behavioral cycles. These findings have implications for understanding the adverse effects of recurrent circadian disruption and sleep curtailment on immune function. PMID:25452149

  19. Optimal timing in screening patients with congestive heart failure and healthy subjects during circadian observation.

    PubMed

    Jong, Tai-Lang; Chang, Ben; Kuo, Cheng-Deng

    2011-02-01

    Congestive heart failure (CHF) is a major medical challenge in developed countries. In order to screen patients with CHF and healthy subjects during circadian observation, accurate judgment and fast response are imperative. In this study, optimal timing during circadian observation via the heart rate variability (HRV) was sought. We tested 29 CHF patients and 54 healthy subjects in the control group from the interbeat interval databases of PhysioBank. By invoking the α1 parameter in detrended fluctuation analysis of HRV, we found that it could be used as an indicator to screen the patients with CHF and subjects in normal sinus rhythm (NSR) under Kruskal-Wallis test. By invoking Fano factor, the optimal timing to screen CHF patients and healthy subjects was found to be from 7 PM to 9 PM during the circadian observation. In addition, this result is robust in a sense that the same result can be achieved by using different ECG recording lengths of 2, 5, 10, … , and 120 min, respectively. Furthermore, a support vector machine was employed to classify CHF and NSR with α1 parameter of a moving half-hour ECG recordings via leave-one-out cross validation. The results showed that the superlative screening performance was obtained in the 7 pm-9 pm period during circadian observation. It is believed that this result of optimal timing will be helpful in the non-invasive monitoring and screening of CHF patients and healthy subjects in the clinical practice. PMID:20953708

  20. Comparison of hormone and electrolyte circadian rhythms in male and female humans

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Vernikos-Danellis, J.; Winget, C. M.; Goodwin, A. E.; Reilly, T.

    1977-01-01

    Circadian rhythm characteristics in healthy male and female humans were studied at 4-hour intervals for urine volume, cortisol, 5-hydroxyindoleacetic acid (5-HIAA), Na, K, Na/K ratios in the urine, as well as plasma cortisol. While plasma and urinary cortisol rhythms were very similar in both sexes, the described rhythms in urine volume, electrolyte, and 5-HIAA excretion differ for the two sexes. The results suggest that sex differences exist in the circadian patterns of important hormone and metabolic functions and that the internal synchrony of circadian rhythms differs for the two sexes. The results seem to indicate that the rhythmical secretion of cortisol does not account for the pattern of Na and K excretion.

  1. Genetic determinism of parasitic circadian periodicity and subperiodicity in human lymphatic filariasis.

    PubMed

    Pichon, Gaston; Treuil, Jean-Pierre

    2004-12-01

    The larval parasites of the pantropical lymphatic filariasis exhibit two types of circadian behaviour. Typically, they only appear in the human bloodstream at nighttime, synchronised with their mosquito vectors. In Polynesia and parts of Southeast Asia, free of nocturnal vectors, they are found at all hours, and each population biorhythm differs. Through a geometrical approach, we explain this circadian diversity by a single, dominant mutation: the clocks of individual parasites are set at midnight (ubiquitous) or at 2 p.m. Compared to other circadian genes, this mutation must be very old, as it is shared by four biologically remote genera of parasites. This seniority sheds new light on several theoretical and practical aspects of vector-parasite temporal relations. PMID:15656351

  2. Resetting of circadian melatonin and cortisol rhythms in humans by ordinary room light

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Boivin, D. B.; Czeisler, C. A.

    1998-01-01

    The present study was designed to investigate whether a weak photic stimulus can reset the endogenous circadian rhythms of plasma melatonin and plasma cortisol in human subjects. A stimulus consisting of three cycles of 5 h exposures to ordinary room light (approximately 180 lux), centered 1.5 h after the endogenous temperature nadir, significantly phase-advanced the plasma melatonin rhythm in eight healthy young men compared with the phase delays observed in eight control subjects who underwent the same protocol but were exposed to darkness (p < or = 0.003). After light-induced phase advances, the circadian rhythms of plasma melatonin and plasma cortisol maintained stable temporal relationships with the endogenous core body temperature cycle, consistent with the conclusion that exposure to ordinary indoor room light had shifted a master circadian pacemaker.

  3. Daytime Blue Light Enhances the Nighttime Circadian Melatonin Inhibition of Human Prostate Cancer Growth

    PubMed Central

    Dauchy, Robert T; Hoffman, Aaron E; Wren-Dail, Melissa A; Hanifin, John P; Warfield, Benjamin; Brainard, George C; Xiang, Shulin; Yuan, Lin; Hill, Steven M; Belancio, Victoria P; Dauchy, Erin M; Smith, Kara; Blask, David E

    2015-01-01

    Light controls pineal melatonin production and temporally coordinates circadian rhythms of metabolism and physiology in normal and neoplastic tissues. We previously showed that peak circulating nocturnal melatonin levels were 7-fold higher after daytime spectral transmittance of white light through blue-tinted (compared with clear) rodent cages. Here, we tested the hypothesis that daytime blue-light amplification of nocturnal melatonin enhances the inhibition of metabolism, signaling activity, and growth of prostate cancer xenografts. Compared with male nude rats housed in clear cages under a 12:12-h light:dark cycle, rats in blue-tinted cages (with increased transmittance of 462–484 nm and decreased red light greater than 640 nm) evinced over 6-fold higher peak plasma melatonin levels at middark phase (time, 2400), whereas midlight-phase levels (1200) were low (less than 3 pg/mL) in both groups. Circadian rhythms of arterial plasma levels of linoleic acid, glucose, lactic acid, pO2, pCO2, insulin, leptin, and corticosterone were disrupted in rats in blue cages as compared with the corresponding entrained rhythms in clear-caged rats. After implantation with tissue-isolated PC3 human prostate cancer xenografts, tumor latency-to-onset of growth and growth rates were markedly delayed, and tumor cAMP levels, uptake–metabolism of linoleic acid, aerobic glycolysis (Warburg effect), and growth signaling activities were reduced in rats in blue compared with clear cages. These data show that the amplification of nighttime melatonin levels by exposing nude rats to blue light during the daytime significantly reduces human prostate cancer metabolic, signaling, and proliferative activities. PMID:26678364

  4. Periodic dip of lipidperoxidation in humans: a redox signal to synchronize peripheral circadian clocks?

    PubMed

    Cardona, F

    2004-01-01

    The output generated by the endogenous circadian clock to control circadian functions and temporal organization in metazoans is unknown. Redox state perturbations generated by reactive oxygen species (ROS) and antioxidants are known to influence the expression of a number of genes and signal transduction pathways. Evidence has been recently provided that the reduced redox cofactors NAD and NADP both regulate clock gene activity in the suprachiasmatic nucleus (SCN) and are induced by it. Significant periodic variations of lipidperoxidation in human blood with a dip at 04.00 h have been previously reported. Such variations could be expected to alter the cellular redox state, thus possibly functioning as periodic redox signals from the master clock. To verify the existence of the mentioned variations the serum levels of malondialdehyde (MDA), a marker of lipidperoxidation, were monitored by High-Performance Liquid Chromatography in 39 healthy subjects at 3-h intervals over a 24-h period. Throughout the test period, only biological noise could be detected in all test persons. However, the normalized MDA levels at 03.00 h were significantly lower (p < 0.05 to < 0.00005) in 38 (97%) of the cases and showed a significantly lower standard deviation (p < 0.004) than at any of the other 3-h intervals, indicating a periodic dip of lipidperoxidation (PDL) in diurnal active subjects. We hypothesize that the PDL, on the basis of its time of appearance, its frequency and its potential influence on cellular redox state, represents a periodic systemic redox output of the SCN, in terms of a relatively short and sudden interruption of the daily oxidative noise. According to recent research, it could be the result of redox alterations induced by the SCN activity and at the same time the pathway by which the master clock resets and synchronizes peripheral oscillators to the light/dark cycle. Additionally, the antioxidative function of the pineal gland activity postulated elsewhere

  5. Time Matters in Ecotoxicological Sampling Due to Circadian Rhythm.

    PubMed

    Zhao, Yanbin; Fent, Karl

    2016-04-01

    As in general, technological inventions also drive the development in the field of toxicology and ecotoxicology. In the past decade, gene expression analysis has become a universally applied technology allowing many insights into toxicological pathways of environmental contaminants. Due to the novel technologies, including quantitative determination of mRNA by quantitative reverse transcription analysis (qRT-PCR), and semiquantitative methods, such as microarrays and RNA-sequencing technologies, toxicological profiles of contaminants could be identified. For instance, gene expression analysis of genes associated with the hypothalamic-pituitary-gonadal axis (HPG axis) in fish had become a conventional end point for endocrine disrupting chemicals. While these gene expression data provide novel insights into identifying potential toxicological end points and molecular mechanisms, often not enough attention is given to the question of mRNA stabilities and reliabilities of transcriptional data, in particular when links to physiological effects are difficult to make. A crucial factor in this issue is the endogenous circadian oscillations of genes during sampling. PMID:27010328

  6. Human Diurnal Preference and Circadian Rhythmicity are Not Associated with the CLOCK 3111C/T Gene Polymorphism

    PubMed Central

    Chang, Anne-Marie; Buch, Alison M.; Bradstreet, Dayna S.; Klements, David J.; Duffy, Jeanne F.

    2013-01-01

    Genetic association studies of the CLOCK 3111C/T polymorphism and diurnal preference have yielded conflicting results since the first report that the 3111C allele was associated with eveningness. The goal of the present study was to investigate the association of this polymorphism with diurnal preference and circadian physiology in a group of 179 individuals, by comparing the frequency of the 3111C allele to diurnal preference, habitual sleep timing, circadian phase markers, and circadian period. We did not find a significant association between this allele and morningness/eveningness or any circadian marker. PMID:21628555

  7. Fluorescence Correlation Spectroscopy to Monitor Kai Protein-based Circadian Oscillations in Real Time*

    PubMed Central

    Goda, Kazuhito; Ito, Hiroshi; Kondo, Takao; Oyama, Tokitaka

    2012-01-01

    Dynamic protein-protein interactions play an essential role in cellular regulatory systems. The cyanobacterial circadian clock is an oscillatory system that can be reconstituted in vitro by mixing ATP and three clock proteins: KaiA, KaiB, and KaiC. Association and dissociation of KaiB from KaiC-containing complexes are critical to circadian phosphorylation and dephosphorylation of KaiC. We developed an automated and noninvasive method to monitor dynamic complex formation in real time using confocal fluorescence correlation spectroscopy (FCS) and uniformly labeled KaiB as a probe. A nanomolar concentration of the labeled KaiB for FCS measurement did not interfere with the oscillatory system but behaved similarly to the wild-type one during the measurement period (>5 days). The fluorescent probe was stable against repeated laser exposure. As an application, we show that this detection system allowed analysis of the dynamics of both long term circadian oscillations and short term responses to temperature changes (∼10 min) in the same sample. This suggested that a phase shift of the clock with a high temperature pulse occurred just after the stimulus through dissociation of KaiB from the KaiC complex. This monitoring method should improve our understanding of the mechanisms underlying this cellular circadian oscillator and provide a means to assess dynamic protein interactions in biological systems characterized by rates similar to those observed with the Kai proteins. PMID:22157012

  8. Sex of college students moderates associations among bedtime, time in bed, and circadian phase angle.

    PubMed

    Van Reen, Eliza; Sharkey, Katherine M; Roane, Brandy M; Barker, David; Seifer, Ronald; Raffray, Tifenn; Bond, Tamara L; Carskadon, Mary A

    2013-12-01

    Sex differences in circadian rhythms have been reported with some conflicting results. The timing of sleep and length of time in bed have not been considered, however, in previous such studies. The current study has 3 major aims: (1) replicate previous studies in a large sample of young adults for sex differences in sleep patterns and dim light melatonin onset (DLMO) phase; (2) in a subsample constrained by matching across sex for bedtime and time in bed, confirm sex differences in DLMO and phase angle of DLMO to bedtime; (3) explore sex differences in the influence of sleep timing and length of time in bed on phase angle. A total of 356 first-year Brown University students (207 women) aged 17.7 to 21.4 years (mean = 18.8 years, SD = 0.4 years) were included in these analyses. Wake time was the only sleep variable that showed a sex difference. DLMO phase was earlier in women than men and phase angle wider in women than men. Shorter time in bed was associated with wider phase angle in women and men. In men, however, a 3-way interaction indicated that phase angles were influenced by both bedtime and time in bed; a complex interaction was not found for women. These analyses in a large sample of young adults on self-selected schedules confirm a sex difference in wake time, circadian phase, and the association between circadian phase and reported bedtime. A complex interaction with length of time in bed occurred for men but not women. We propose that these sex differences likely indicate fundamental differences in the biology of the sleep and circadian timing systems as well as in behavioral choices. PMID:24336420

  9. Krüppel-like factor 9 is a circadian transcription factor in human epidermis that controls proliferation of keratinocytes

    PubMed Central

    Spörl, Florian; Korge, Sandra; Jürchott, Karsten; Wunderskirchner, Minetta; Schellenberg, Katja; Heins, Sven; Specht, Aljona; Stoll, Claudia; Klemz, Roman; Maier, Bert; Wenck, Horst; Schrader, Annika; Kunz, Dieter; Blatt, Thomas; Kramer, Achim

    2012-01-01

    Circadian clocks govern a wide range of cellular and physiological functions in various organisms. Recent evidence suggests distinct functions of local clocks in peripheral mammalian tissues such as immune responses and cell cycle control. However, studying circadian action in peripheral tissues has been limited so far to mouse models, leaving the implication for human systems widely elusive. In particular, circadian rhythms in human skin, which is naturally exposed to strong daytime-dependent changes in the environment, have not been investigated to date on a molecular level. Here, we present a comprehensive analysis of circadian gene expression in human epidermis. Whole-genome microarray analysis of suction-blister epidermis obtained throughout the day revealed a functional circadian clock in epidermal keratinocytes with hundreds of transcripts regulated in a daytime-dependent manner. Among those, we identified a circadian transcription factor, Krüppel-like factor 9 (Klf9), that is substantially up-regulated in a cortisol and differentiation-state-dependent manner. Gain- and loss-of-function experiments showed strong antiproliferative effects of Klf9. Putative Klf9 target genes include proliferation/differentiation markers that also show circadian expression in vivo, suggesting that Klf9 affects keratinocyte proliferation/differentiation by controlling the expression of target genes in a daytime-dependent manner. PMID:22711835

  10. EEG and ocular correlates of circadian melatonin phase and human performance decrements during sleep loss

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cajochen, C.; Khalsa, S. B.; Wyatt, J. K.; Czeisler, C. A.; Dijk, D. J.

    1999-01-01

    The aim of this study was to quantify the associations between slow eye movements (SEMs), eye blink rate, waking electroencephalogram (EEG) power density, neurobehavioral performance, and the circadian rhythm of plasma melatonin in a cohort of 10 healthy men during up to 32 h of sustained wakefulness. The time course of neurobehavioral performance was characterized by fairly stable levels throughout the first 16 h of wakefulness followed by deterioration during the phase of melatonin secretion. This deterioration was closely associated with an increase in SEMs. Frontal low-frequency EEG activity (1-7 Hz) exhibited a prominent increase with time awake and little circadian modulation. EEG alpha activity exhibited circadian modulation. The dynamics of SEMs and EEG activity were phase locked to changes in neurobehavioral performance and lagged the plasma melatonin rhythm. The data indicate that frontal areas of the brain are more susceptible to sleep loss than occipital areas. Frontal EEG activity and ocular parameters may be used to monitor and predict changes in neurobehavioral performance associated with sleep loss and circadian misalignment.

  11. XAP5 CIRCADIAN TIMEKEEPER Coordinates Light Signals for Proper Timing of Photomorphogenesis and the Circadian Clock in Arabidopsis[W

    PubMed Central

    Martin-Tryon, Ellen L.; Harmer, Stacey L.

    2008-01-01

    Numerous, varied, and widespread taxa have an internal circadian clock that allows anticipation of rhythmic changes in the environment. We have identified XAP5 CIRCADIAN TIMEKEEPER (XCT), an Arabidopsis thaliana gene important for light regulation of the circadian clock and photomorphogenesis. XCT is essential for proper clock function: xct mutants display a shortened circadian period in all conditions tested. Interestingly, XCT plays opposite roles in plant responses to light depending both on trait and wavelength. The clock in xct plants is hypersensitive to red but shows normal responses to blue light. By contrast, inhibition of hypocotyl elongation in xct is hyposensitive to red light but hypersensitive to blue light. Finally, XCT is important for ribulose-1,5-bisphosphate carboxylase/oxygenase production and plant greening in response to light. This novel combination of phenotypes suggests XCT may play a global role in coordinating growth in response to the light environment. XCT contains a XAP5 domain and is well conserved across diverse taxa, suggesting it has a common function in higher eukaryotes. Downregulation of the XCT ortholog in Caenorhabditis elegans is lethal, suggesting that studies in Arabidopsis may be instrumental to understanding the biochemical activity of XCT. PMID:18515502

  12. Two antagonistic clock-regulated histidine kinases time the activation of circadian gene expression

    PubMed Central

    Gutu, Andrian; O’Shea, Erin K.

    2013-01-01

    Summary The cyanobacterial circadian pacemaker consists of a three-protein clock – KaiA, KaiB and KaiC – that generates oscillations in the phosphorylation state of KaiC. Here we investigate how temporal information encoded in KaiC phosphorylation is transduced to RpaA, a transcription factor required for circadian gene expression. We show that phosphorylation of RpaA is regulated by two antagonistic histidine kinases, SasA and CikA, which are sequentially activated at distinct times by the Kai clock complex. SasA acts as a kinase toward RpaA, whereas CikA, previously implicated in clock input, acts as a phosphatase that dephosphorylates RpaA. CikA and SasA cooperate to generate an oscillation of RpaA activity that is distinct from that generated by either enzyme alone and offset from the rhythm of KaiC phosphorylation. Our observations reveal how circadian clocks can precisely control the timing of output pathways via the concerted action of two oppositely acting enzymes. PMID:23541768

  13. Insight into cyanobacterial circadian timing from structural details of the KaiB–KaiC interaction

    PubMed Central

    Snijder, Joost; Burnley, Rebecca J.; Wiegard, Anika; Melquiond, Adrien S. J.; Bonvin, Alexandre M. J. J.; Axmann, Ilka M.; Heck, Albert J. R.

    2014-01-01

    Circadian timing in cyanobacteria is determined by the Kai system consisting of KaiA, KaiB, and KaiC. Interactions between Kai proteins change the phosphorylation status of KaiC, defining the phase of circadian timing. The KaiC–KaiB interaction is crucial for the circadian rhythm to enter the dephosphorylation phase but it is not well understood. Using mass spectrometry to characterize Kai complexes, we found that KaiB forms monomers, dimers, and tetramers. The monomer is the unit that interacts with KaiC, with six KaiB monomers binding to one KaiC hexamer. Hydrogen–deuterium exchange MS reveals structural changes in KaiC upon binding of KaiB in both the CI and CII domains, showing allosteric coupling upon KaiB binding. Based on this information we propose a model of the KaiB–KaiC complex and hypothesize that the allosteric changes observed upon complex formation relate to coupling KaiC ATPase activity with KaiB binding and to sequestration of KaiA dimers into KaiCBA complexes. PMID:24474762

  14. Insight into cyanobacterial circadian timing from structural details of the KaiB-KaiC interaction.

    PubMed

    Snijder, Joost; Burnley, Rebecca J; Wiegard, Anika; Melquiond, Adrien S J; Bonvin, Alexandre M J J; Axmann, Ilka M; Heck, Albert J R

    2014-01-28

    Circadian timing in cyanobacteria is determined by the Kai system consisting of KaiA, KaiB, and KaiC. Interactions between Kai proteins change the phosphorylation status of KaiC, defining the phase of circadian timing. The KaiC-KaiB interaction is crucial for the circadian rhythm to enter the dephosphorylation phase but it is not well understood. Using mass spectrometry to characterize Kai complexes, we found that KaiB forms monomers, dimers, and tetramers. The monomer is the unit that interacts with KaiC, with six KaiB monomers binding to one KaiC hexamer. Hydrogen-deuterium exchange MS reveals structural changes in KaiC upon binding of KaiB in both the CI and CII domains, showing allosteric coupling upon KaiB binding. Based on this information we propose a model of the KaiB-KaiC complex and hypothesize that the allosteric changes observed upon complex formation relate to coupling KaiC ATPase activity with KaiB binding and to sequestration of KaiA dimers into KaiCBA complexes. PMID:24474762

  15. Evolution of photoperiodic time measurement is independent of the circadian clock in the pitcher-plant mosquito, Wyeomyia smithii

    PubMed Central

    Emerson, Kevin J.; Dake, Sabrina J.; Bradshaw, William E.; Holzapfel, Christina M.

    2014-01-01

    For over 70 years, researchers have debated whether the ability to use day length as a cue for the timing of seasonal events (photoperiodism) is related to the endogenous circadian clock that regulates the timing of daily events. Models of photoperiodism include two components: (1) a photoperiodic timer that measures the length of the day, and (2) a photoperiodic counter that elicits the downstream photoperiodic response after a threshold number of days has been counted. Herein, we show that there is no geographical pattern of genetic association between the expression of the circadian clock and the photoperiodic timer or counter. We conclude that the photoperiodic timer and counter have evolved independently of the circadian clock in the pitcher-plant mosquito Wyeomyia smithii and hence, the evolutionary modification of photoperiodism throughout the range of W. smithii has not been causally mediated by a corresponding evolution of the circadian clock. PMID:19190920

  16. Evolution of photoperiodic time measurement is independent of the circadian clock in the pitcher-plant mosquito, Wyeomyia smithii.

    PubMed

    Emerson, Kevin J; Dake, Sabrina J; Bradshaw, William E; Holzapfel, Christina M

    2009-04-01

    For over 70 years, researchers have debated whether the ability to use day length as a cue for the timing of seasonal events (photoperiodism) is related to the endogenous circadian clock that regulates the timing of daily events. Models of photoperiodism include two components: (1) a photoperiodic timer that measures the length of the day, and (2) a photoperiodic counter that elicits the downstream photoperiodic response after a threshold number of days has been counted. Herein, we show that there is no geographical pattern of genetic association between the expression of the circadian clock and the photoperiodic timer or counter. We conclude that the photoperiodic timer and counter have evolved independently of the circadian clock in the pitcher-plant mosquito Wyeomyia smithii and hence, the evolutionary modification of photoperiodism throughout the range of W. smithii has not been causally mediated by a corresponding evolution of the circadian clock. PMID:19190920

  17. The Drosophila Circadian Clock Gates Sleep through Time-of-Day Dependent Modulation of Sleep-Promoting Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Cavanaugh, Daniel J.; Vigderman, Abigail S.; Dean, Terry; Garbe, David S.; Sehgal, Amita

    2016-01-01

    Study Objectives: Sleep is under the control of homeostatic and circadian processes, which interact to determine sleep timing and duration, but the mechanisms through which the circadian system modulates sleep are largely unknown. We therefore used adult-specific, temporally controlled neuronal activation and inhibition to identify an interaction between the circadian clock and a novel population of sleep-promoting neurons in Drosophila. Methods: Transgenic flies expressed either dTRPA1, a neuronal activator, or Shibirets1, an inhibitor of synaptic release, in small subsets of neurons. Sleep, as determined by activity monitoring and video tracking, was assessed before and after temperature-induced activation or inhibition using these effector molecules. We compared the effect of these manipulations in control flies and in mutant flies that lacked components of the molecular circadian clock. Results: Adult-specific activation or inhibition of a population of neurons that projects to the sleep-promoting dorsal Fan-Shaped Body resulted in bidirectional control over sleep. Interestingly, the magnitude of the sleep changes were time-of-day dependent. Activation of sleep-promoting neurons was maximally effective during the middle of the day and night, and was relatively ineffective during the day-to-night and night-to-day transitions. These time-ofday specific effects were absent in flies that lacked functional circadian clocks. Conclusions: We conclude that the circadian system functions to gate sleep through active inhibition at specific times of day. These data identify a mechanism through which the circadian system prevents premature sleep onset in the late evening, when homeostatic sleep drive is high. Citation: Cavanaugh DJ, Vigderman AS, Dean T, Garbe DS, Sehgal A. The Drosophila circadian clock gates sleep through time-of-day dependent modulation of sleep-promoting neurons. SLEEP 2016;39(2):345–356. PMID:26350473

  18. Human high frequency somatosensory evoked potential components are refractory to circadian modulations of tonic alertness.

    PubMed

    Gobbelé, René; Waberski, Till D; Thyerlei, Dinah; Thissen, Melanie; Fimm, Bruno; Klostermann, Fabian; Curio, Gabriel; Buchner, Helmut

    2007-02-01

    The impact of vigilance states, such as sleep or arousal changes, on the high-frequency (600 Hz) components (HFOs) of somatosensory evoked potentials (SEPs) is known. The present study sought to characterize the effects of circadian fluctuations of tonic alertness on HFOs in awake humans. Median nerve SEPs were recorded at four times during a 24-hour waking period. In parallel to the SEP recordings, a reaction-time (RT) task was performed to assess tonic alertness. Additionally, the spontaneous EEG was monitored. The low-frequency SEP component N20 and the early and late HFO parts did not change across the measurement sessions. In contrast, RTs were clearly prolonged at night and on the second morning. EEG also showed increased delta power at night. HFOs are sensitive to pronounced vigilance changes, such as sleep, but are refractory to fluctuations of tonic alertness. Tonic alertness is regarded to be the top-down cognitive control mechanism of wakefulness, whereas sleep is mediated by overwhelming bottom-up regulation, which seems apparently more relevant for, at least in part, subcortically triggered high-frequency burst generation in the ascending somatosensory system. PMID:17277574

  19. Circadian variation of EEG power spectra in NREM and REM sleep in humans: dissociation from body temperature

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Dijk, D. J.

    1999-01-01

    In humans, EEG power spectra in REM and NREM sleep, as well as characteristics of sleep spindles such as their duration, amplitude, frequency and incidence, vary with circadian phase. Recently it has been hypothesized that circadian variations in EEG spectra in humans are caused by variations in brain or body temperature and may not represent phenomena relevant to sleep regulatory processes. To test this directly, a further analysis of EEG power spectra - collected in a forced desynchrony protocol in which sleep episodes were scheduled to a 28-h period while the rhythms of body temperature and plasma melatonin were oscillating at their near 24-h period - was carried out. EEG power spectra were computed for NREM and REM sleep occurring between 90-120 and 270-300 degrees of the circadian melatonin rhythm, i.e. just after the clearance of melatonin from plasma in the 'morning' and just after the 'evening' increase in melatonin secretion. Average body temperatures during scheduled sleep at these two circadian phases were identical (36.72 degrees C). Despite identical body temperatures, the power spectra in NREM sleep were very different at these two circadian phases. EEG activity in the low frequency spindle range was significantly and markedly enhanced after the evening increase in plasma melatonin as compared to the morning phase. For REM sleep, significant differences in power spectra during these two circadian phases, in particular in the alpha range, were also observed. The results confirm that EEG power spectra in NREM and REM sleep vary with circadian phase, suggesting that the direct contribution of temperature to the circadian variation in EEG power spectra is absent or only minor, and are at variance with the hypothesis that circadian variations in EEG power spectra are caused by variations in temperature.

  20. The longitudinal course of sleep timing and circadian preferences in adults with bipolar disorder

    PubMed Central

    Seleem, Mohammad; Merranko, John; Goldstein, Tina R; Goldstein, Benjamin I; Axelson, David A; Brent, David A; Nimgaonkar, Vishwajit L; Diler, Rasim S; Sakolsky, Dara; Kupfer, David J; Birmaher, Boris

    2014-01-01

    Objectives To study the longitudinal course of sleep timing and circadian preferences in individuals with bipolar disorder (BP) compared to individuals with non-BP psychopathology and healthy controls. Methods Individuals with bipolar I and bipolar II disorder (n = 257), non-BP psychopathology (n = 105), and healthy controls (n = 55) (mean age 40.2 years, 21.3% male, 85.1% Caucasian) were followed on average every 27 months for a mean of four years. Sleep timing parameters and circadian preference were reported using the Sleep Timing Questionnaire and The Composite Scale for Morningness. Group comparisons were adjusted for multiple comparisons and between-group differences in demographic variables and psychopharmacological treatment. Results Regardless of their current mood state, individuals with BP showed more sleep onset latency (SOL), awakening after sleep onset (WASO), and evening preference in comparison to both individuals with non-BP psychopathology and healthy controls. Individuals with BP also showed less stability of bed and awakening times in comparison to the other two groups, though these results were dependent on mood state. Non-BP individuals only showed more WASO and less stability in bed and awakening times before work/school days than healthy controls. Adjusting for comorbid disorders yielded similar results. Within-group analyses found little to no effect of time and BP subtype on sleep timing and circadian preference. Conclusions Disturbances of sleep timing are prominent in individuals with BP. These disturbances are worse during mood episodes, but still apparent during euthymic periods. Evening preference was not associated with polarity type, or mood state in BP, suggesting that this characteristic may be a trait marker. PMID:25524085

  1. Nutrition and the circadian system.

    PubMed

    Potter, Gregory D M; Cade, Janet E; Grant, Peter J; Hardie, Laura J

    2016-08-01

    The human circadian system anticipates and adapts to daily environmental changes to optimise behaviour according to time of day and temporally partitions incompatible physiological processes. At the helm of this system is a master clock in the suprachiasmatic nuclei (SCN) of the anterior hypothalamus. The SCN are primarily synchronised to the 24-h day by the light/dark cycle; however, feeding/fasting cycles are the primary time cues for clocks in peripheral tissues. Aligning feeding/fasting cycles with clock-regulated metabolic changes optimises metabolism, and studies of other animals suggest that feeding at inappropriate times disrupts circadian system organisation, and thereby contributes to adverse metabolic consequences and chronic disease development. 'High-fat diets' (HFD) produce particularly deleterious effects on circadian system organisation in rodents by blunting feeding/fasting cycles. Time-of-day-restricted feeding, where food availability is restricted to a period of several hours, offsets many adverse consequences of HFD in these animals; however, further evidence is required to assess whether the same is true in humans. Several nutritional compounds have robust effects on the circadian system. Caffeine, for example, can speed synchronisation to new time zones after jetlag. An appreciation of the circadian system has many implications for nutritional science and may ultimately help reduce the burden of chronic diseases. PMID:27221157

  2. Nutrition and the Circadian System

    PubMed Central

    Potter, Gregory D M; Cade, Janet E; Grant, Peter J; Hardie, Laura J

    2016-01-01

    The human circadian system anticipates and adapts to daily environmental changes to optimise behaviour according to time of day and temporally partition incompatible physiological processes. At the helm of this system is a master clock in the suprachiasmatic nuclei (SCN) of the anterior hypothalamus. The SCN are primarily synchronised to the 24 hour day by the light/dark cycle; however, feeding/fasting cycles are the primary time cues for clocks in peripheral tissues. Aligning feeding/fasting cycles with clock-regulated metabolic changes optimises metabolism, and studies of other animals suggest that feeding at inappropriate times disrupts circadian system organisation and thereby contributes to adverse metabolic consequences and chronic disease development. ‘High-fat diets’ (HFDs) produce particularly deleterious effects on circadian system organisation in rodents by blunting feeding/fasting cycles. Time-of-day-restricted feeding, where food availability is restricted to a period of several hours, offsets many adverse consequences of HFDs in these animals; however, further evidence is required to assess whether the same is true in humans. Several nutritional compounds have robust effects on the circadian system. Caffeine, for example, can speed synchronisation to new time zones after jetlag. An appreciation of the circadian system has many implications for nutritional science and may ultimately help reduce the burden of chronic diseases. PMID:27221157

  3. Circadian Clock Genes Modulate Human Bone Marrow Mesenchymal Stem Cell Differentiation, Migration and Cell Cycle

    PubMed Central

    Boucher, Helene; Vanneaux, Valerie; Domet, Thomas; Parouchev, Alexandre; Larghero, Jerome

    2016-01-01

    Many of the components that regulate the circadian clock have been identified in organisms and humans. The influence of circadian rhythm (CR) on the regulation of stem cells biology began to be evaluated. However, little is known on the role of CR on human mesenchymal stem cell (hMSCs) properties. The objective of this study was to investigate the influence of CR on the differentiation capacities of bone marrow hMSCs, as well as the regulation of cell cycle and migration capabilities. To that, we used both a chemical approach with a GSK-3β specific inhibitor (2’E,3’Z-6-bromoindirubin-3’-oxime, BIO) and a knockdown of CLOCK and PER2, two of the main genes involved in CR regulation. In these experimental conditions, a dramatic inhibition of adipocyte differentiation was observed, while osteoblastic differentiation capacities were not modified. In addition, cell migration was decreased in PER2-/- cells. Lastly, downregulation of circadian clock genes induced a modification of the hMSCs cell cycle phase distribution, which was shown to be related to a change of the cyclin expression profile. Taken together, these data showed that CR plays a role in the regulation of hMSCs differentiation and division, and likely represent key factor in maintaining hMSCs properties. PMID:26741371

  4. The Timing of the Circadian Clock and Sleep Differ between Napping and Non-Napping Toddlers.

    PubMed

    Akacem, Lameese D; Simpkin, Charles T; Carskadon, Mary A; Wright, Kenneth P; Jenni, Oskar G; Achermann, Peter; LeBourgeois, Monique K

    2015-01-01

    The timing of the internal circadian clock shows large inter-individual variability across the lifespan. Although the sleep-wakefulness pattern of most toddlers includes an afternoon nap, the association between napping and circadian phase in early childhood remains unexplored. This study examined differences in circadian phase and sleep between napping and non-napping toddlers. Data were collected on 20 toddlers (34.2±2.0 months; 12 females; 15 nappers). Children followed their habitual napping and non-napping sleep schedules (monitored with actigraphy) for 5 days before an in-home salivary dim light melatonin onset (DLMO) assessment. On average, napping children fell asleep during their nap opportunities on 3.6±1.2 of the 5 days before the DLMO assessment. For these napping children, melatonin onset time was 38 min later (p = 0.044; d = 0.93), actigraphically-estimated bedtime was 43 min later (p = 0.014; d = 1.24), sleep onset time was 59 min later (p = 0.006; d = 1.46), and sleep onset latency was 16 min longer (p = 0.030; d = 1.03) than those not napping. Midsleep and wake time did not differ by napping status. No difference was observed in the bedtime, sleep onset, or midsleep phase relationships with DLMO; however, the wake time phase difference was 47 min smaller for napping toddlers (p = 0.029; d = 1.23). On average, nappers had 69 min shorter nighttime sleep durations (p = 0.006; d = 1.47) and spent 49 min less time in bed (p = 0.019; d = 1.16) than non-nappers. Number of days napping was correlated with melatonin onset time (r = 0.49; p = 0.014). Our findings indicate that napping influences individual variability in melatonin onset time in early childhood. The delayed bedtimes of napping toddlers likely permits light exposure later in the evening, thereby delaying the timing of the clock and sleep. Whether the early developmental trajectory of circadian phase involves an advance associated with the decline in napping is a question necessitating

  5. A circadian clock in Antarctic krill: an endogenous timing system governs metabolic output rhythms in the euphausid species Euphausia superba.

    PubMed

    Teschke, Mathias; Wendt, Sabrina; Kawaguchi, So; Kramer, Achim; Meyer, Bettina

    2011-01-01

    Antarctic krill, Euphausia superba, shapes the structure of the Southern Ocean ecosystem. Its central position in the food web, the ongoing environmental changes due to climatic warming, and increasing commercial interest on this species emphasize the urgency of understanding the adaptability of krill to its environment. Krill has evolved rhythmic physiological and behavioral functions which are synchronized with the daily and seasonal cycles of the complex Southern Ocean ecosystem. The mechanisms, however, leading to these rhythms are essentially unknown. Here, we show that krill possesses an endogenous circadian clock that governs metabolic and physiological output rhythms. We found that expression of the canonical clock gene cry2 was highly rhythmic both in a light-dark cycle and in constant darkness. We detected a remarkable short circadian period, which we interpret as a special feature of the krill's circadian clock that helps to entrain the circadian system to the extreme range of photoperiods krill is exposed to throughout the year. Furthermore, we found that important key metabolic enzymes of krill showed bimodal circadian oscillations (∼9-12 h period) in transcript abundance and enzymatic activity. Oxygen consumption of krill showed ∼9-12 h oscillations that correlated with the temporal activity profile of key enzymes of aerobic energy metabolism. Our results demonstrate the first report of an endogenous circadian timing system in Antarctic krill and its likely link to metabolic key processes. Krill's circadian clock may not only be critical for synchronization to the solar day but also for the control of seasonal events. This study provides a powerful basis for the investigation into the mechanisms of temporal synchronization in this marine key species and will also lead to the first comprehensive analyses of the circadian clock of a polar marine organism through the entire photoperiodic cycle. PMID:22022521

  6. The effect of low light intensity on the maintenance of circadian synchrony in human subjects

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Winget, C. M.; Lyman, J.; Beljan, J. R.

    1976-01-01

    Experiments were conducted on six healthy male subjects aged 20-23 yr and exposed for 21 days in a confined regulated environment to 16L:8D light:dark cycle with a view toward determining whether the light environment of 16L:8D at the relatively low light intensity of 15 ft.c. is adequate for the maintenance of circadian synchrony in man. The light intensity was 100 ft.c. during the first seven days, reduced to 15 ft.c. during the next seven days, and increased again to 100 ft.c. during the last seven days. Rectal temperature (RT) and heart rate (HR) were recorded throughout the three phases. In the 100 ft.c. regime, the RT and HR rhythms remained stable and circadian throughout. It is shown that 15 ft.c. light intensity is at or below threshold for maintaining circadian synchrony of human physiologic rhythms marked by instability and internal desynchronization with degradation of performance and well-being.

  7. Stress, geomagnetic disturbance, infradian and circadian sampling for circulating corticosterone and models of human depression?

    PubMed

    Olah, A; Jozsa, R; Csernus, V; Sandor, J; Muller, A; Zeman, M; Hoogerwerf, W; Cornélissen, G; Halberg, F

    2008-04-01

    While certain circadian hormonal changes are prominent, their predictable assessment requires a standardization of conditions of sampling. The 24-hour rhythm in circulating corticosterone of rodents, known since the 1950s, was studied as a presumed proxy for stress on 108 rats divided into 9 groups of 6 male and 9 groups of 6 female animals sampled every 4 hours for 24 hours. In a first stress study, the "no-rhythm" (zero-amplitude) assumption failed to be rejected at the 5% probability level in the two control groups and in 16 out of the 18 groups considered. A circadian rhythm could be detected with statistical significance, however, in three separate follow-up studies in the same laboratory, each on 168 rats kept on two antiphasic lighting regimens, with 4-hourly sampling for 7 or 14 days. In the first stress study, pooling of certain groups helped the detection and assessment of the circadian corticosterone rhythm. Without extrapolating to hormones other than corticosterone, which may shift more slowly or adjust differently and in response to different synchronizers, the three follow-up studies yielded uncertainty measures (95% confidence intervals) for the point estimate of its circadian period, of possible use in any future study as a reference standard. The happenstance of a magnetic disturbance at the start of two follow-up studies was associated with the detection of a circasemiseptan component, raising the question whether a geomagnetic disturbance could be considered as a "load". Far beyond the limitations of sample size, the methodological requirements for standardization in the experimental laboratory concerning designs of studies are considered in the context of models of depression. Lessons from nature's unforeseen geomagnetic contribution and from human studies are noted, all to support the advocacy, in the study of loads, of sampling schedules covering more than 24 hours. PMID:18515211

  8. Stress, Geomagnetic Disturbance, Infradian and Circadian Sampling for Circulating Corticosterone and Models of Human Depression?

    PubMed Central

    Olah, A.; Jozsa, R.; Csernus, V.; Sandor, J.; Muller, A.; Zeman, M.; Hoogerwerf, W.; Cornélissen, G.; Halberg, F.

    2008-01-01

    While certain circadian hormonal changes are prominent, their predictable assessment requires a standardization of conditions of sampling. The 24-hour rhythm in circulating corticosterone of rodents, known since the 1950s, was studied as a presumed proxy for stress on 108 rats divided into 9 groups of 6 male and 9 groups of 6 female animals sampled every 4 hours for 24 hours. In a first stress study, the “no-rhythm” (zero-amplitude) assumption failed to be rejected at the 5% probability level in the two control groups and in 16 out of the 18 groups considered. A circadian rhythm could be detected with statistical significance, however, in three separate follow-up studies in the same laboratory, each on 168 rats kept on two antiphasic lighting regimens, with 4-hourly sampling for 7 or 14 days. In the first stress study, pooling of certain groups helped the detection and assessment of the circadian corticosterone rhythm. Without extrapolating to hormones other than corticosterone, which may shift more slowly or adjust differently and in response to different synchronizers, the three follow-up studies yielded uncertainty measures (95% confidence intervals) for the point estimate of its circadian period, of possible use in any future study as a reference standard. The happenstance of a magnetic disturbance at the start of two follow-up studies was associated with the detection of a circasemiseptan component, raising the question whether a geomagnetic disturbance could be considered as a “load”. Far beyond the limitations of sample size, the methodological requirements for standardization in the experimental laboratory concerning designs of studies are considered in the context of models of depression. Lessons from nature's unforeseen geomagnetic contribution and from human studies are noted, all to support the advocacy, in the study of loads, of sampling schedules covering more than 24 hours. PMID:18515211

  9. A matter of time: study of circadian clocks and their role in inflammation.

    PubMed

    Carter, Stuart J; Durrington, Hannah J; Gibbs, Julie E; Blaikley, John; Loudon, Andrew S; Ray, David W; Sabroe, Ian

    2016-04-01

    Circadian rhythms regulate changes in physiology, allowing organisms to respond to predictable environmental demands varying over a 24 h period. A growing body of evidence supports a key role for the circadian clock in the regulation of immune functions and inflammatory responses, which influence the understanding of infections and inflammatory diseases and their treatment. A variety of experimental methods have been used to assess the complex bidirectional crosstalk between the circadian clock and inflammation. In this review, we summarize the organization of the molecular clock, experimental methods used to study circadian rhythms, and both the inflammatory and immune consequences of circadian disturbance. PMID:26856993

  10. Action spectrum for melatonin regulation in humans: evidence for a novel circadian photoreceptor

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Brainard, G. C.; Hanifin, J. P.; Greeson, J. M.; Byrne, B.; Glickman, G.; Gerner, E.; Rollag, M. D.

    2001-01-01

    The photopigment in the human eye that transduces light for circadian and neuroendocrine regulation, is unknown. The aim of this study was to establish an action spectrum for light-induced melatonin suppression that could help elucidate the ocular photoreceptor system for regulating the human pineal gland. Subjects (37 females, 35 males, mean age of 24.5 +/- 0.3 years) were healthy and had normal color vision. Full-field, monochromatic light exposures took place between 2:00 and 3:30 A.M. while subjects' pupils were dilated. Blood samples collected before and after light exposures were quantified for melatonin. Each subject was tested with at least seven different irradiances of one wavelength with a minimum of 1 week between each nighttime exposure. Nighttime melatonin suppression tests (n = 627) were completed with wavelengths from 420 to 600 nm. The data were fit to eight univariant, sigmoidal fluence-response curves (R(2) = 0.81-0.95). The action spectrum constructed from these data fit an opsin template (R(2) = 0.91), which identifies 446-477 nm as the most potent wavelength region providing circadian input for regulating melatonin secretion. The results suggest that, in humans, a single photopigment may be primarily responsible for melatonin suppression, and its peak absorbance appears to be distinct from that of rod and cone cell photopigments for vision. The data also suggest that this new photopigment is retinaldehyde based. These findings suggest that there is a novel opsin photopigment in the human eye that mediates circadian photoreception.

  11. Can small shifts in circadian phase affect performance?

    PubMed Central

    Burgess, Helen J.; Legasto, Carlo S.; Fogg, Louis F.; Smith, Mark R.

    2012-01-01

    Small shifts in circadian timing occur frequently as a result of daylight saving time or later weekend sleep. These subtle shifts in circadian phase have been shown to influence subjective sleepiness, but it remains unclear if they can significantly affect performance. In a retrospective analysis we examined performance on the Psychomotor Vigilance Test before bedtime and after wake time in 11 healthy adults on fixed sleep schedules based on their habitual sleep times. The dim light melatonin onset, a marker of circadian timing, was measured on two occasions. An average 1.1 hour shift away from a proposed optimal circadian phase angle (6 hours between melatonin onset and midpoint of sleep) significantly slowed mean, median and fastest 10% reaction times before bedtime and after wake time (p<0.05). These results add to previous reports that suggest that humans may be sensitive to commonly occurring small shifts in circadian timing. PMID:22695081

  12. Pinealectomy shortens resynchronisation times of house sparrow (Passer domesticus) circadian rhythms.

    PubMed

    Kumar, Vinod; Gwinner, Eberhard

    2005-09-01

    In many birds periodic melatonin secretion by the pineal organ is essential for the high-amplitude self-sustained output of the circadian pacemaker, and thus for the persistence of rhythmicity in 24 h oscillations controlled by it. The elimination of the pineal melatonin rhythm, or a reduction of its amplitude, renders the circadian pacemaker a less self-sustained, often highly damped, oscillatory system. A reduction in the degree of self-sustainment of a rhythm should not only increase its range of entrainment but also shorten the resynchronization times following phase-shifts of the zeitgeber. This hypothesis has not yet been directly tested. We therefore carried out the present study in which house sparrows (Passer domesticus) were subjected to both 6-h advance and 6-h delay phase-shifts of the light-dark cycle before and after the pinealectomy, and the rhythms in locomotion and feeding were recorded. The results indicate that following the delay, but not the advance, phase shift, resynchronization times were significantly shorter after pinealectomy. The dependence of resynchronization times on the presence or absence of the pineal organ is not only of theoretical interest but might also be of functional significance in the natural life of birds. A reduction or elimination of the amplitude of the melatonin secretion rhythm by the pineal organ might be responsible for faster adjustment to changes in zeitgeber conditions in nature. PMID:16151793

  13. Chronotype is Associated with the Timing of the Circadian Clock and Sleep in Toddlers

    PubMed Central

    Simpkin, Charles T.; Jenni, Oskar G.; Carskadon, Mary A.; Wright, Kenneth P.; Akacem, Lameese D.; Garlo, Katherine G.; LeBourgeois, Monique K.

    2014-01-01

    Chronotype is a construct reflecting individual differences in diurnal preference. Although chronotype has been extensively studied in school-age children, adolescents, and adults, data on young children are scarce. This study describes chronotype and its relationship to the timing of the circadian clock and sleep in 48 healthy children ages 30–36 months (33.4±2.1 months; 24 males). Parents completed the Children’s Chronotype Questionnaire (CCTQ) ~2 weeks before the start of the study. The CCTQ provides three measures of chronotype: midsleep time on free days, a multi-item morningness/eveningness score, and a single item chronotype score. After 5 days of sleeping on their habitual schedule (assessed with actigraphy and sleep diaries), children participated in an in-home salivary dim light melatonin onset assessment. Average midsleep time on free days was 1:47±0:35, and the average morningness/eveningness score was 26.8±4.3. Most toddlers (58.4%) were rated as “definitely a morning type” or “rather morning than evening type,” while none (0%) was rated as “definitely evening type.” More morning-types (midsleep time on free days and morningness/eveningness score, respectively) had earlier melatonin onset times (r=0.45, r=0.26), earlier habitual bedtimes (r=0.78, r=0.54), sleep onset times (r=0.80, r=0.52), sleep midpoint times (r=0.90, r=0.53), and wake times (r=0.74, r=0.34). Parental ratings using the single item chronotype score were associated with melatonin onset (r=0.33) and habitual bedtimes (r=0.27), sleep onset times (r=0.33), and sleep midpoint times (r=0.27). Morningness may best characterize circadian preference in early childhood. Associations between chronotype and circadian physiology and sleep timing suggest adequate validity for the CCTQ in this age group. These findings have important implications for understanding the marked variability in sleep timing during the early years of life. PMID:24628737

  14. Chronotype is associated with the timing of the circadian clock and sleep in toddlers.

    PubMed

    Simpkin, Charles T; Jenni, Oskar G; Carskadon, Mary A; Wright, Kenneth P; Akacem, Lameese D; Garlo, Katherine G; LeBourgeois, Monique K

    2014-08-01

    Chronotype is a construct reflecting individual differences in diurnal preference. Although chronotype has been studied extensively in school-age children, adolescents and adults, data on young children are scarce. This study describes chronotype and its relationship to the timing of the circadian clock and sleep in 48 healthy children aged 30-36 months (33.4 ± 2.1 months; 24 males). Parents completed the Children's Chronotype Questionnaire (CCTQ) ~2 weeks before the start of the study. The CCTQ provides three measures of chronotype: midsleep time on free days, a multi-item morningness/eveningness score and a single item chronotype score. After 5 days of sleeping on their habitual schedule (assessed with actigraphy and sleep diaries), children participated in an in-home salivary dim light melatonin onset assessment. Average midsleep time on free days was 1:47 ± 0:35, and the average morningness/eveningness score was 26.8 ± 4.3. Most toddlers (58.4%) were rated as 'definitely a morning type' or 'rather morning than evening type', while none (0%) were rated as 'definitely evening type'. More morning types (midsleep time on free days and morningness/eveningness score, respectively) had earlier melatonin onset times (r = 0.45, r = 0.26), earlier habitual bedtimes (r = 0.78, r = 0.54), sleep onset times (r = 0.80, r = 0.52), sleep midpoint times (r = 0.90, r = 0.53) and wake times (r = 0.74, r = 0.34). Parent ratings using the single-item chronotype score were associated with melatonin onset (r = 0.32) and habitual bedtimes (r = 0.27), sleep onset times (r = 0.33) and sleep midpoint times (r = 0.27). Morningness may best characterize circadian preference in early childhood. Associations between chronotype and circadian physiology and sleep timing suggest adequate validity for the CCTQ in this age group. These findings have important implications for understanding the marked variability in sleep timing during the early years of life. PMID:24628737

  15. GABA-mediated repulsive coupling between circadian clock neurons in the SCN encodes seasonal time

    PubMed Central

    Myung, Jihwan; Hong, Sungho; DeWoskin, Daniel; De Schutter, Erik; Forger, Daniel B.; Takumi, Toru

    2015-01-01

    The mammalian suprachiasmatic nucleus (SCN) forms not only the master circadian clock but also a seasonal clock. This neural network of ∼10,000 circadian oscillators encodes season-dependent day-length changes through a largely unknown mechanism. We show that region-intrinsic changes in the SCN fine-tune the degree of network synchrony and reorganize the phase relationship among circadian oscillators to represent day length. We measure oscillations of the clock gene Bmal1, at single-cell and regional levels in cultured SCN explanted from animals raised under short or long days. Coupling estimation using the Kuramoto framework reveals that the network has couplings that can be both phase-attractive (synchronizing) and -repulsive (desynchronizing). The phase gap between the dorsal and ventral regions increases and the overall period of the SCN shortens with longer day length. We find that one of the underlying physiological mechanisms is the modulation of the intracellular chloride concentration, which can adjust the strength and polarity of the ionotropic GABAA-mediated synaptic input. We show that increasing day-length changes the pattern of chloride transporter expression, yielding more excitatory GABA synaptic input, and that blocking GABAA signaling or the chloride transporter disrupts the unique phase and period organization induced by the day length. We test the consequences of this tunable GABA coupling in the context of excitation–inhibition balance through detailed realistic modeling. These results indicate that the network encoding of seasonal time is controlled by modulation of intracellular chloride, which determines the phase relationship among and period difference between the dorsal and ventral SCN. PMID:26130804

  16. The effect of low light intensity on the maintenance of circadian synchrony in human subjects

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Winget, C. M.; Lyman, J.; Beljan, J. R.

    1977-01-01

    The light-intensity threshold for humans is not known. In past space flights owing to power restrictions, light intensities have been minimal and reported to be as low as 15 ft. c. This study was conducted to determine whether the light (L)/dark (D) environment of 16L : 8D at the relatively low light intensity of 15 ft. c. was adequate for the maintenance of circadian synchrony in human subjects. Six healthy male subjects aged 20-23 years were exposed for 21 days to a 16L : 8D photoperiod. During the first 7 days the light intensity was 100 ft. c.; it was reduced to 15 ft. c. during the next 7 days and increased again to 100 ft. c. during the last 7 days of the study. Rectal temperature (RT) and heart rate (HR) were recorded continuously throughout the 21 days of the study. In the 100 ft. c. 16L : 8D the RT and HR rhythms remained stable and circadian throughout. When the light intensity was decreased to 15 ft. c. the periodicity of the HR rhythm was significantly decreased and this rhythm showed marked instability. In contrast the period of the RT rhythm did not change but a consistent phase delay occurred due to a delay in the lights-on associated rise in RT. These divergent effects on these two rhythms in internal desynchronization and performance decrement during the 15 ft. c. exposure. The data emphasize the need for establishing accurately the minimal lighting requirements for the maintenance of circadian rhythms of humans in confined environments.

  17. Circadian Rhythms

    MedlinePlus

    ... chronobiology. Are circadian rhythms the same thing as biological clocks? No, but they are related. Our biological clocks drive our circadian rhythms. What are biological clocks? The biological clocks that control circadian rhythms ...

  18. Mixtures of opposing phosphorylations within hexamers precisely time feedback in the cyanobacterial circadian clock

    PubMed Central

    Lin, Jenny; Chew, Justin; Chockanathan, Udaysankar; Rust, Michael J.

    2014-01-01

    Circadian oscillations are generated by the purified cyanobacterial clock proteins, KaiA, KaiB, and KaiC, through rhythmic interactions that depend on multisite phosphorylation of KaiC. However, the mechanisms that allow these phosphorylation reactions to robustly control the timing of oscillations over a range of protein stoichiometries are not clear. We show that when KaiC hexamers consist of a mixture of differentially phosphorylated subunits, the two phosphorylation sites have opposing effects on the ability of each hexamer to bind to the negative regulator KaiB. We likewise show that the ability of the positive regulator KaiA to act on KaiC depends on the phosphorylation state of the hexamer and that KaiA and KaiB recognize alternative allosteric states of the KaiC ring. Using mathematical models with kinetic parameters taken from experimental data, we find that antagonism of the two KaiC phosphorylation sites generates an ultrasensitive switch in negative feedback strength necessary for stable circadian oscillations over a range of component concentrations. Similar strategies based on opposing modifications may be used to support robustness in other timing systems and in cellular signaling more generally. PMID:25197081

  19. Circadian rhythms of performance: new trends

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Carrier, J.; Monk, T. H.

    2000-01-01

    This brief review is concerned with how human performance efficiency changes as a function of time of day. It presents an overview of some of the research paradigms and conceptual models that have been used to investigate circadian performance rhythms. The influence of homeostatic and circadian processes on performance regulation is discussed. The review also briefly presents recent mathematical models of alertness that have been used to predict cognitive performance. Related topics such as interindividual differences and the postlunch dip are presented.

  20. DNA damage shifts circadian clock time via Hausp-dependent Cry1 stabilization

    PubMed Central

    Papp, Stephanie J; Huber, Anne-Laure; Jordan, Sabine D; Kriebs, Anna; Nguyen, Madelena; Moresco, James J; Yates, John R; Lamia, Katja A

    2015-01-01

    The circadian transcriptional repressors cryptochrome 1 (Cry1) and 2 (Cry2) evolved from photolyases, bacterial light-activated DNA repair enzymes. In this study, we report that while they have lost DNA repair activity, Cry1/2 adapted to protect genomic integrity by responding to DNA damage through posttranslational modification and coordinating the downstream transcriptional response. We demonstrate that genotoxic stress stimulates Cry1 phosphorylation and its deubiquitination by Herpes virus associated ubiquitin-specific protease (Hausp, a.k.a Usp7), stabilizing Cry1 and shifting circadian clock time. DNA damage also increases Cry2 interaction with Fbxl3, destabilizing Cry2. Thus, genotoxic stress increases the Cry1/Cry2 ratio, suggesting distinct functions for Cry1 and Cry2 following DNA damage. Indeed, the transcriptional response to genotoxic stress is enhanced in Cry1−/− and blunted in Cry2−/− cells. Furthermore, Cry2−/− cells accumulate damaged DNA. These results suggest that Cry1 and Cry2, which evolved from DNA repair enzymes, protect genomic integrity via coordinated transcriptional regulation. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.04883.001 PMID:25756610

  1. Sample Preparation for Phosphoproteomic Analysis of Circadian Time Series in Arabidopsis thaliana

    PubMed Central

    Krahmer, Johanna; Hindle, Matthew M.; Martin, Sarah F.; Le Bihan, Thierry; Millar, Andrew J.

    2015-01-01

    Systems biological approaches to study the Arabidopsis thaliana circadian clock have mainly focused on transcriptomics while little is known about the proteome, and even less about posttranslational modifications. Evidence has emerged that posttranslational protein modifications, in particular phosphorylation, play an important role for the clock and its output. Phosphoproteomics is the method of choice for a large-scale approach to gain more knowledge about rhythmic protein phosphorylation. Recent plant phosphoproteomics publications have identified several thousand phosphopeptides. However, the methods used in these studies are very labor-intensive and therefore not suitable to apply to a well-replicated circadian time series. To address this issue, we present and compare different strategies for sample preparation for phosphoproteomics that are compatible with large numbers of samples. Methods are compared regarding number of identifications, variability of quantitation, and functional categorization. We focus on the type of detergent used for protein extraction as well as methods for its removal. We also test a simple two-fraction separation of the protein extract. PMID:25662467

  2. Meal time shift disturbs circadian rhythmicity along with metabolic and behavioral alterations in mice.

    PubMed

    Yoon, Ji-Ae; Han, Dong-Hee; Noh, Jong-Yun; Kim, Mi-Hee; Son, Gi Hoon; Kim, Kyungjin; Kim, Chang-Ju; Pak, Youngmi Kim; Cho, Sehyung

    2012-01-01

    In modern society, growing numbers of people are engaged in various forms of shift works or trans-meridian travels. Such circadian misalignment is known to disturb endogenous diurnal rhythms, which may lead to harmful physiological consequences including metabolic syndrome, obesity, cancer, cardiovascular disorders, and gastric disorders as well as other physical and mental disorders. However, the precise mechanism(s) underlying these changes are yet unclear. The present work, therefore examined the effects of 6 h advance or delay of usual meal time on diurnal rhythmicities in home cage activity (HCA), body temperature (BT), blood metabolic markers, glucose homeostasis, and expression of genes that are involved in cholesterol homeostasis by feeding young adult male mice in a time-restrictive manner. Delay of meal time caused locomotive hyperactivity in a significant portion (42%) of subjects, while 6 h advance caused a torpor-like symptom during the late scotophase. Accordingly, daily rhythms of blood glucose and triglyceride were differentially affected by time-restrictive feeding regimen with concurrent metabolic alterations. Along with these physiological changes, time-restrictive feeding also influenced the circadian expression patterns of low density lipoprotein receptor (LDLR) as well as most LDLR regulatory factors. Strikingly, chronic advance of meal time induced insulin resistance, while chronic delay significantly elevated blood glucose levels. Taken together, our findings indicate that persistent shifts in usual meal time impact the diurnal rhythms of carbohydrate and lipid metabolisms in addition to HCA and BT, thereby posing critical implications for the health and diseases of shift workers. PMID:22952870

  3. Circadian Clocks and Metabolism

    PubMed Central

    Marcheva, Biliana; Ramsey, Kathryn M.; Peek, Clara B.; Affinati, Alison; Maury, Eleonore; Bass, Joseph

    2014-01-01

    Circadian clocks maintain periodicity in internal cycles of behavior, physiology, and metabolism, enabling organisms to anticipate the 24-h rotation of the Earth. In mammals, circadian integration of metabolic systems optimizes energy harvesting and utilization across the light/dark cycle. Disruption of clock genes has recently been linked to sleep disorders and to the development of cardiometabolic disease. Conversely, aberrant nutrient signaling affects circadian rhythms of behavior. This chapter reviews the emerging relationship between the molecular clock and metabolic systems and examines evidence that circadian disruption exerts deleterious consequences on human health. PMID:23604478

  4. Neither the SCN nor the adrenals are required for circadian time-place learning in mice

    PubMed Central

    Papantoniou, Christos; Gerkema, Menno P.; Van Der Zee, Eddy A.

    2014-01-01

    During Time-Place Learning (TPL), animals link biological significant events (e.g. encountering predators, food, mates) with the location and time of occurrence in the environment. This allows animals to anticipate which locations to visit or avoid based on previous experience and knowledge of the current time of day. The TPL task applied in this study consists of three daily sessions in a three-arm maze, with a food reward at the end of each arm. During each session, mice should avoid one specific arm to avoid a foot-shock. We previously demonstrated that, rather than using external cue-based strategies, mice use an internal clock (circadian strategy) for TPL, referred to as circadian TPL (cTPL). It is unknown in which brain region(s) or peripheral organ(s) the consulted clock underlying cTPL resides. Three candidates were examined in this study: (a) the suprachiasmatic nucleus (SCN), a light entrainable oscillator (LEO) and considered the master circadian clock in the brain, (b) the food entrainable oscillator (FEO), entrained by restricted food availability, and (c) the adrenal glands, harboring an important peripheral oscillator. cTPL performance should be affected if the underlying oscillator system is abruptly phase-shifted. Therefore, we first investigated cTPL sensitivity to abrupt light and food shifts. Next we investigated cTPL in SCN-lesioned- and adrenalectomized mice. Abrupt FEO phase-shifts (induced by advancing and delaying feeding time) affected TPL performance in specific test sessions while a LEO phase-shift (induced by a light pulse) more severely affected TPL performance in all three daily test sessions. SCN-lesioned mice showed no TPL deficiencies compared to SHAM-lesioned mice. Moreover, both SHAM- and SCN-lesioned mice showed unaffected cTPL performance when re-tested after bilateral adrenalectomy. We conclude that, although cTPL is sensitive to timing manipulations with light as well as food, neither the SCN nor the adrenals are required for

  5. ‘The clocks that time us’—circadian rhythms in neurodegenerative disorders

    PubMed Central

    Videnovic, Aleksandar; Lazar, Alpar S.; Barker, Roger A.; Overeem, Sebastiaan

    2015-01-01

    Circadian rhythms are physiological and behavioural cycles generated by an endogenous biological clock, the suprachiasmatic nucleus. The circadian system influences the majority of physiological processes, including sleep–wake homeostasis. Impaired sleep and alertness are common symptoms of neurodegenerative disorders, and circadian dysfunction might exacerbate the disease process. The pathophysiology of sleep–wake disturbances in these disorders remains largely unknown, and is presumably multifactorial. Circadian rhythm dysfunction is often observed in patients with Alzheimer disease, in whom it has a major impact on quality of life and represents one of the most important factors leading to institutionalization of patients. Similarly, sleep and circadian problems represent common nonmotor features of Parkinson disease and Huntington disease. Clinical studies and experiments in animal models of neurodegenerative disorders have revealed the progressive nature of circadian dysfunction throughout the course of neurodegeneration, and suggest strategies for the restoration of circadian rhythmicity involving behavioural and pharmacological interventions that target the sleep–wake cycle. In this Review, we discuss the role of the circadian system in the regulation of the sleep–wake cycle, and outline the implications of disrupted circadian timekeeping in neurodegenerative diseases. PMID:25385339

  6. Homeostatic versus circadian effects of melatonin on core body temperature in humans.

    PubMed

    Cagnacci, A; Kräuchi, K; Wirz-Justice, A; Volpe, A

    1997-12-01

    Evidence obtained in animals has suggested a link of the pineal gland and its hormone melatonin with the regulation of core body temperature (CBT). Depending on the species considered, melatonin intervenes in generating seasonal rhythms of daily torpor and hibernation, in heat stress tolerance, and in setting the CBT set point. In humans, the circadian rhythms of melatonin is strictly associated with that of CBT, the nocturnal decline of CBT being inversely related to the rise of melatonin. Whereas there is inconsistent evidence for the suggestion that the decline of CBT may prompt the release of melatonin, conversely, stringent data indicate that melatonin decreases CBT. Administration of melatonin during the day, when it is not normally secreted, decreases CBT by about 0.3 to 0.4 degree C, and suppression of melatonin at night enhances CBT by about the same magnitude. Accordingly, the nocturnal rise of melatonin contributes to the circadian amplitude of CBT. The mechanisms through which melatonin decreases CBT are unclear. It is known that melatonin enhances heat loss, but a reduction of heat production cannot be excluded. Besides actions on peripheral vessels aimed to favor heat loss, it is likely that the effect of melatonin to reduce CBT is exerted mainly in the hypothalamus, where thermoregulatory centers are located. Recent observations have shown that the acute thermoregulatory effects induced by melatonin and bright light are independent of their circadian phase-shifting effects. The effect of melatonin ultimately brings a saving of energy and is reduced in at least two physiological situations: aging and the luteal menstrual phase. In both conditions, melatonin does not exert its CBT-lowering effects. Whereas in older women this effect may represent an age-related alteration, in the luteal phase this modification may represent a mechanism of keeping CBT higher at night to promote a better embryo implantation and survival. PMID:9406024

  7. Network-Mediated Encoding of Circadian Time: The Suprachiasmatic Nucleus (SCN) from Genes to Neurons to Circuits, and Back

    PubMed Central

    Enoki, Ryosuke; Mazuski, Cristina N.; Jones, Jeff; Evans, Jennifer A.; Azzi, Abdelhalim

    2014-01-01

    The transcriptional architecture of intracellular circadian clocks is similar across phyla, but in mammals interneuronal mechanisms confer a higher level of circadian integration. The suprachiasmatic nucleus (SCN) is a unique model to study these mechanisms, as it operates as a ∼24 h clock not only in the living animal, but also when isolated in culture. This “clock in a dish” can be used to address fundamental questions, such as how intraneuronal mechanisms are translated by SCN neurons into circuit-level emergent properties and how the circuit decodes, and responds to, light input. This review addresses recent developments in understanding the relationship between electrical activity, [Ca2+]i, and intracellular clocks. Furthermore, optogenetic and chemogenetic approaches to investigate the distinct roles of neurons and glial cells in circuit encoding of circadian time will be discussed, as well as the epigenetic and circuit-level mechanisms that enable the SCN to translate light input into coherent daily rhythms. PMID:25392488

  8. Circadian clocks and breast cancer.

    PubMed

    Blakeman, Victoria; Williams, Jack L; Meng, Qing-Jun; Streuli, Charles H

    2016-01-01

    Circadian clocks respond to environmental time cues to coordinate 24-hour oscillations in almost every tissue of the body. In the breast, circadian clocks regulate the rhythmic expression of numerous genes. Disrupted expression of circadian genes can alter breast biology and may promote cancer. Here we overview circadian mechanisms, and the connection between the molecular clock and breast biology. We describe how disruption of circadian genes contributes to cancer via multiple mechanisms, and link this to increased tumour risk in women who work irregular shift patterns. Understanding the influence of circadian rhythms on breast cancer could lead to more efficacious therapies, reformed public health policy and improved patient outcome. PMID:27590298

  9. The Circadian Timing System: A Recent Addition in the Physiological Mechanisms Underlying Pathological and Aging Processes

    PubMed Central

    Arellanes-Licea, Elvira; Caldelas, Ivette; De Ita-Pérez, Dalia; Díaz-Muñoz, Mauricio

    2014-01-01

    Experimental findings and clinical observations have strengthened the association between physio-pathologic aspects of several diseases, as well as aging process, with the occurrence and control of circadian rhythms. The circadian system is composed by a principal pacemaker in the suprachiasmatic nucleus (SNC) which is in coordination with a number of peripheral circadian oscillators. Many pathological entities such as metabolic syndrome, cancer and cardiovascular events are strongly connected with a disruptive condition of the circadian cycle. Inadequate circadian physiology can be elicited by genetic defects (mutations in clock genes or circadian control genes) or physiological deficiencies (desynchronization between SCN and peripheral oscillators). In this review, we focus on the most recent experimental findings regarding molecular defects in the molecular circadian clock and the altered coordination in the circadian system that are related with clinical conditions such as metabolic diseases, cancer predisposition and physiological deficiencies associated to jet-lag and shiftwork schedules. Implications in the aging process will be also reviewed. PMID:25489492

  10. Circadian Rhythm Genes CLOCK and PER3 Polymorphisms and Morning Gastric Motility in Humans

    PubMed Central

    Yamaguchi, Mitsue; Kotani, Kazuhiko; Tsuzaki, Kokoro; Takagi, Ayaka; Motokubota, Naoko; Komai, Naho; Sakane, Naoki; Moritani, Toshio; Nagai, Narumi

    2015-01-01

    Background Clock genes regulate circadian rhythm and are involved in various physiological processes, including digestion. We therefore investigated the association between the CLOCK 3111T/C single nucleotide polymorphism and the Period3 (PER3) variable-number tandem-repeat polymorphism (either 4 or 5 repeats 54 nt in length) with morning gastric motility. Methods Lifestyle questionnaires and anthropometric measurements were performed with 173 female volunteers (mean age, 19.4 years). Gastric motility, evaluated by electrogastrography (EGG), blood pressure, and heart rate levels were measured at 8:30 a.m. after an overnight fast. For gastric motility, the spectral powers (% normal power) and dominant frequency (DF, peak of the power spectrum) of the EGG were evaluated. The CLOCK and PER3 polymorphisms were determined by polymerase chain reaction (PCR) restriction fragment length polymorphism analysis. Results Subjects with the CLOCK C allele (T/C or C/C genotypes: n = 59) showed a significantly lower DF (mean, 2.56 cpm) than those with the T/T genotype (n = 114, 2.81 cpm, P < 0.05). Subjects with the longer PER3 allele (PER34/5 or PER35/5 genotypes: n = 65) also showed a significantly lower DF (2.55 cpm) than those with the shorter PER34/4 genotype (n = 108, 2.83 cpm, P < 0.05). Furthermore, subjects with both the T/C or C/C and PER34/5 or PER35/5 genotypes showed a significantly lower DF (2.43 cpm, P < 0.05) than subjects with other combinations of the alleles (T/T and PER34/4 genotype, T/C or C/C and PER34/4 genotypes, and T/T and PER34/5 or PER35/5 genotypes). Conclusions These results suggest that minor polymorphisms of the circadian rhythm genes CLOCK and PER3 may be associated with poor morning gastric motility, and may have a combinatorial effect. The present findings may offer a new viewpoint on the role of circadian rhythm genes on the peripheral circadian systems, including the time-keeping function of the gut. PMID:25775462

  11. Scheduled Feeding Alters the Timing of the Suprachiasmatic Nucleus Circadian Clock in Dexras 1-Deficient Mice

    PubMed Central

    Bouchard-Cannon, Pascale; Cheng, Hai-Ying M.

    2013-01-01

    Restricted feeding (RF) schedules are potent zeitgebers capable of entraining metabolic and hormonal rhythms in peripheral oscillators in anticipation of food. Behaviorally, this manifests in the form of food anticipatory activity (FAA) in the hours preceding food availability. Circadian rhythms of FAA are thought to be controlled by a food-entrainable oscillator (FEO) outside of the suprachiasmatic nucleus (SCN), the central circadian pacemaker in mammals. Although evidence suggests that the FEO and the SCN are capable of interacting functionally under RF conditions, the genetic basis of these interactions remains to be defined. In this study, using dexras1-deficient (dexras1−/−) mice, the authors examined whether Dexras1, a modulator of multiple inputs to the SCN, plays a role in regulating the effects of RF on activity rhythms and gene expression in the SCN. Daytime RF under 12L:12D or constant darkness (DD) resulted in potentiated (but less stable) FAA expression in dexras1−/− mice compared with wild-type (WT) controls. Under these conditions, the magnitude and phase of the SCN-driven activity component were greatly perturbed in the mutants. Restoration to ad libitum (AL) feeding revealed a stable phase displacement of the SCN-driven activity component of dexras1−/− mice by ~2 h in advance of the expected time. RF in the late night/early morning induced a long-lasting increase in the period of the SCN-driven activity component in the mutants but not the WT. At the molecular level, daytime RF advanced the rhythm of PER1, PER2, and pERK expression in the mutant SCN without having any effect in the WT. Collectively, these results indicate that the absence of Dexras1 sensitizes the SCN to perturbations resulting from restricted feeding. PMID:22928915

  12. A Gq-Ca2+ Axis Controls Circuit-Level Encoding of Circadian Time in the Suprachiasmatic Nucleus

    PubMed Central

    Brancaccio, Marco; Maywood, Elizabeth S.; Chesham, Johanna E.; Loudon, Andrew S.I.; Hastings, Michael H.

    2013-01-01

    Summary The role of intracellular transcriptional/post-translational feedback loops (TTFL) within the circadian pacemaker of the suprachiasmatic nucleus (SCN) is well established. In contrast, contributions from G-coupled pathways and cytosolic rhythms to the intercellular control of SCN pacemaking are poorly understood. We therefore combined viral transduction of SCN slices with fluorescence/bioluminescence imaging to visualize GCaMP3-reported circadian oscillations of intracellular calcium [Ca2+]i alongside activation of Ca2+/cAMP-responsive elements. We phase-mapped them to the TTFL, in time and SCN space, and demonstrated their dependence upon G-coupled vasoactive intestinal peptide (VIP) signaling. Pharmacogenetic manipulation revealed the individual contributions of Gq, Gs, and Gi to cytosolic and TTFL circadian rhythms. Importantly, activation of Gq-dependent (but not Gs or Gi) pathways in a minority of neurons reprogrammed [Ca2+]i and TTFL rhythms across the entire SCN. This reprogramming was mediated by intrinsic VIPergic signaling, thus revealing a Gq/[Ca2+]i-VIP leitmotif and unanticipated plasticity within network encoding of SCN circadian time. PMID:23623697

  13. Timed food availability affects circadian behavior but not the neuropeptide Y expression in Indian weaverbirds exposed to atypical light environment.

    PubMed

    Singh, Devraj; Trivedi, Neerja; Malik, Shalie; Rani, Sangeeta; Kumar, Vinod

    2016-07-01

    We tested the hypothesis whether daily food availability period would restore rhythmicity in individuals with disrupted circadian behavior with no effect on appetite regulation. Particularly, we investigated the effects of timed food availability on activity behavior, and Fos and neuropeptide Y expressions in Indian weaverbirds (Ploceus philippinus) under atypical light conditions. Initially, weaverbirds in 3 groups of 7-8 each were entrained to 7L:17D (25: <0.3lx) with food ad libitum. Thereafter, food availability was restricted for 7h such that it overlapped with the light period. After a week, 7L:17D was replaced with 3.5L: 3.5D (T7, group 1), 3.5L: 20.5D (T24, group 2) or constant dim light, LLdim (<0.3lx, group 3) for 5weeks. Food cycles synchronized the circadian activity behavior, albeit with group differences, but did not affect body mass, blood glucose levels or testis size. Further, Fos, not NPY mRNA or peptide, expression measured at ZT2 and ZT14 (ZT0=time of food given) showed significant group differences in the hippocampus, dorsomedial hypothalamus and infundibular nuclear complex. Another identical experiment examined after-effects of the 3 light conditions on persistence of the circadian rhythms. Weaverbirds exposed for 4weeks to identical food but different light conditions, as above, were released into the free-running condition of food ad libitum and LLdim. Circadian rhythms were decayed in birds previously exposed to T7 LD cycle. Overall, these results show that timed meal restores rhythmicity in individuals with circadian rhythm disruptions without involving neuropeptide Y, the key appetite regulatory molecule. PMID:27085910

  14. Gentamicin-induced ototoxicity and nephrotoxicity vary with circadian time of treatment and entail separate mechanisms.

    PubMed

    Blunston, Mary A; Yonovitz, Al; Woodahl, Erica L; Smolensky, Michael H

    2015-01-01

    The aminoglycoside antibiotic gentamicin can cause both ototoxicity and nephrotoxicity, the severity of which varies with circadian time of daily treatment. However, it is not yet resolved if such drug-induced adverse effects are independent or interdependent phenomena. Two groups of 9 female Sprague-Dawley rats (200-250 g), each housed separately and entrained to a 12 h light (06:00-18:00 h) - 12 h dark cycle, received a daily subcutaneous injection of 100 mg/kg gentamicin. One group was treated at the beginning of the activity span, 2 Hours After Lights On (HALO), and the other at the beginning of the rest span, 14 HALO. Global toxicity was gauged by both body weight loss relative to the pre-treatment baseline and number of deaths. Ototoxicity, i.e., hearing loss, was assessed by changes in auditory brainstem response (ABR) for pure tone stimuli of 8, 16, 24, and 32 kHz before and after 2 and 4 weeks of gentamicin treatment. Renal toxicity was evaluated by changes in urinary N-acetyl-β-glucosaminidase (NAG)/creatinine (CR) concentration ratio before and after each week of treatment. In a complementary substudy of separate but comparable 2 and 14 HALO groups of rats, blood samples were obtained before and 30, 60, 120, and 240 min post-subcutaneous injection of 100 mg/kg gentamicin. Number of animal deaths was greater in the 2 (4 deaths) than 14 HALO (1 death) group, mirroring more severe initial (first two weeks of treatment) body weight losses from baseline, being more than 2-fold greater in animals of the 2 than 14 HALO group. Ototoxicity progressively worsened during the treatment; although, the extent of hearing loss varied according to circadian time of treatment across all frequencies (p < 0.05), particularly the 24 and 32 kHz ones (both p < 0.005), both at the 2 and 4 week assessments. At 32 kHz after 4 weeks of gentamicin dosing, the 2 HALO group showed an average 42 dB hearing loss, while the 14 HALO group exhibited only an

  15. Regulation of circadian rhythms in mammals by behavioral arousal.

    PubMed

    Webb, Ian C; Antle, Michael C; Mistlberger, Ralph E

    2014-06-01

    Circadian rhythms in most mammals are synchronized to local time by phase and period resetting actions of daily light-dark cycles on a retino-recipient, light-entrainable circadian pacemaker, the suprachiasmatic nucleus (SCN). The SCN receives input from other brain regions, some of which mediate the phase and period resetting actions of behavioral arousal on circadian rhythms. We review historical milestones in the discovery of so-called "nonphotic" circadian clock resetting induced by environmentally stimulated arousal, or by feedback from clock-controlled rest-activity cycles. Topics include species generality, interactions between concurrent or successive photic and nonphotic inputs to the circadian clock, neural pathways, neurotransmitters, and clock cell responses that mediate resetting by behavioral arousal. The role of behavioral inputs to the circadian clock in determining the phase of entrainment to local time in natural environments is not well understood. Nonetheless, nonphotic effects are of sufficient magnitude to raise issues for the design of experiments in behavioral neuroscience (any procedure that is sufficiently arousing may alter the timing of circadian clocks that regulate dependent variables of primary interest). Nonphotic inputs to the clock may be exploited in strategies to reset or strengthen circadian rhythms in humans. PMID:24773430

  16. Adjustment of sleep and the circadian temperature rhythm after flights across nine time zones

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gander, Philippa H.; Myhre, Grete; Graeber, R. Curtis; Lauber, John K.; Andersen, Harald T.

    1989-01-01

    The adjustment of sleep-wake patterns and the circadian temperature rhythm was monitored in nine Royal Norwegian Airforce volunteers operating P-3 aircraft during a westward training deployment across nine time zones. Subjects recorded all sleep and nap times, rated nightly sleep quality, and completed personality inventories. Rectal temperature, heart rate, and wrist activity were continuously monitored. Adjustment was slower after the return eastward flight than after the outbound westward flight. The eastward flight produced slower readjustment of sleep timing to local time and greater interindividual variability in the patterns of adjustment of sleep and temperature. One subject apparently exhibited resynchronization by partition, with the temperature rhythm undergoing the reciprocal 15-h delay. In contrast, average heart rates during sleep were significantly elevated only after westward flight. Interindividual differences in adjustment of the temperature rhythm were correlated with some of the personality measures. Larger phase delays in the overall temperature waveform (as measured on the 5th day after westward flight) were exhibited by extraverts, and less consistently by evening types.

  17. Circadian timing in central and peripheral tissues in a migratory songbird: dependence on annual life-history states.

    PubMed

    Singh, Devraj; Trivedi, Amit Kumar; Rani, Sangeeta; Panda, Satchidananda; Kumar, Vinod

    2015-10-01

    Predictable seasonal change in photoperiod triggers a sequential change in the daily activity-rest pattern, adaptive for migration in several bird species. The night-migratory black-headed bunting (Emberiza melanocephala) is day active under short photoperiods (8 h light:16 h dark, short day sensitive). Under long photoperiods (16 h light:8 h dark), the buntings are initially day active (long day premigratory) but subsequently become intensely night active (long day migratory) and after few weeks again return to a day active pattern (long day refractory). However, it is unclear how the daily expression of circadian genes changes during photoperiod-induced seasonal life-history states (LHSs). We measured period 2 (Per2), cryptochrome 1 (Cry1), brain and muscle arnt-like protein 1 (Bmal1), and circadian locomotor output cycles kaput (Clock) mRNA expressions in various neural and peripheral tissues of buntings in different LHSs and discovered differences of ∼2 to 6 h in the phase and 2- to 4-fold in amplitude of circadian oscillations of Per2, Cry1, and Bmal1 between photoperiod-induced LHSs. Phase relationship in mRNA oscillations was altered between oscillator components in the circadian pacemaker system (retina, pineal, hypothalamus) as well as in the peripheral (liver, muscle) tissues. These results show for the first time altered waveforms of clock gene expressions in all tissues in parallel with behavioral shifts and suggest the involvement of circadian system in photoperiod induction of seasonal LHSs in a migratory species. PMID:26103987

  18. Refinement of a limit cycle oscillator model of the effects of light on the human circadian pacemaker

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Jewett, M. E.; Kronauer, R. E.; Brown, E. N. (Principal Investigator)

    1998-01-01

    In 1990, Kronauer proposed a mathematical model of the effects of light on the human circadian pacemaker. Although this model predicted many general features of the response of the human circadian pacemaker to light exposure, additional data now available enable us to refine the original model. We first refined the original model by incorporating the results of a dose response curve to light into the model's predicted relationship between light intensity and the strength of the drive onto the pacemaker. Data from three bright light phase resetting experiments were then used to refine the amplitude recovery characteristics of the model. Finally, the model was tested and further refined using data from an extensive phase resetting experiment in which a 3-cycle bright light stimulus was presented against a background of dim light. In order to describe the results of the four resetting experiments, the following major refinements to the original model were necessary: (i) the relationship between light intensity (I) and drive onto the pacemaker was reduced from I1/3 to I0.23 for light levels between 150 and 10,000 lux; (ii) the van der Pol oscillator from the original model was replaced with a higher-order limit cycle oscillator so that amplitude recovery is slower near the singularity and faster near the limit cycle; (iii) a direct effect of light on circadian period (tau x) was incorporated into the model such that as I increases, tau x decreases, which is in accordance with "Aschoff's rule". This refined model generates the following testable predictions: it should be difficult to enhance normal circadian amplitude via bright light; near the critical point of a type 0 phase response curve (PRC) the slope should be steeper than it is in a type 1 PRC; and circadian period measured during forced desynchrony should be directly affected by ambient light intensity.

  19. Aging human circadian rhythms: conventional wisdom may not always be right

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Monk, Timothy H.

    2005-01-01

    This review discusses the ways in which the circadian rhythms of older people are different from those of younger adults. After a brief discussion of clinical issues, the review describes the conventional wisdom regarding age-related changes in circadian rhythms. These can be summarized as four assertions regarding what happens to people as they get older: 1) the amplitude of their circadian rhythms reduces, 2) the phase of their circadian rhythms becomes earlier, 3) their natural free-running period (tau) shortens, and 4) their ability to tolerate abrupt phase shifts (e.g., from jet travel or night work) worsens. The review then discusses the empirical evidence for and against these assertions and discusses some alternative explanations. The conclusions are that although older people undoubtedly have earlier circadian phases than younger adults, and have more trouble coping with shift work and jet lag, evidence for the assertions about rhythm amplitude and tau are, at best, mixed.

  20. No endogenous circadian rhythm in resting plasma Hsp72 concentration in humans

    PubMed Central

    Fortes, Matthew B.

    2008-01-01

    Extra-cellular (e) heat shock protein (Hsp)72 has been shown to be elevated in a number of clinical conditions and has been proposed as a potential diagnostic marker. From a methodological and diagnostic perspective, it is important to investigate if concentrations of eHsp72 fluctuate throughout the day; hence, the purpose of the study was to measure resting concentrations of plasma eHsp72 throughout a 24-h period. Blood samples were taken every hour from 1200–2100 hours and from 0700–1200 hours the following day from seven healthy recreationally active males. Participants remained in the laboratory throughout the trial, performed light sedentary activities and were provided with standardised meals and fluids. Physical activity was quantified throughout by the use of an accelerometer. Ethylenediaminetetraacetic acid blood samples were analysed for eHsp72 concentration using a commercially available high-sensitivity enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (intra-assay coefficient of variation = 1.4%). One-way repeated measures analysis of variance revealed that measures of physiological stress such as heart rate, systolic and diastolic blood pressure remained stable throughout the trial and subjects remained sedentary throughout (mean activity energy expenditure above resting metabolic rate—35.7 ± 10.0 kcal∙h−1). Plasma Hsp72 concentration did not fluctuate significantly throughout the day and showed no apparent endogenous circadian rhythm in absolute (P = 0.367) or plasma volume change corrected data (P = 0.380). Individual coefficients of variation ranged from 3.8–7.7% (mean 5.4%). Mean Hsp72 concentration across all subjects and time points was 1.49 ± 0.08 ng∙ml−1. These data show that in a rested state, plasma eHsp72 concentration shows no apparent endogenous circadian rhythm. PMID:18839337

  1. Clk post-transcriptional control denoises circadian transcription in time and space

    PubMed Central

    Wolfson, Victoria; Menet, Jerome S; Weissbein, Uri; Afik, Shaked; Haimovich, Daniel; Gafni, Chen; Friedman, Nir; Rosbash, Michael; Kadener, Sebastian

    2016-01-01

    The transcription factor CLOCK (CLK) is essential for the development and maintenance of circadian rhythms in Drosophila. However, little is known about how CLK levels are controlled. Here, we show that Clk mRNA is strongly regulated post-transcriptionally through its 3’UTR. Flies expressing Clk transgenes missing their normal 3’UTR, exhibited variable CLK-driven transcription and circadian behavior, as well as ectopic expression of CLK-target genes in the brain. Surprisingly, in these flies, the numbers of the key circadian neurons differs stochastically between individuals and within the two hemispheres of the same brain. In addition, flies carrying Clk transgenes with deletions in the binding sites for the miRNA bantam have stochastic number of pacemaker neurons, suggesting that this miRNA mediates the deterministic expression of CLK. Overall our results demonstrate a key role of Clk post-transcriptional control in stabilizing circadian transcription, which is essential for proper development and maintenance of circadian rhythms in Drosophila. PMID:25952406

  2. Circadian Clocks, Stress, and Immunity

    PubMed Central

    Dumbell, Rebecca; Matveeva, Olga; Oster, Henrik

    2016-01-01

    In mammals, molecular circadian clocks are present in most cells of the body, and this circadian network plays an important role in synchronizing physiological processes and behaviors to the appropriate time of day. The hypothalamic–pituitary–adrenal endocrine axis regulates the response to acute and chronic stress, acting through its final effectors – glucocorticoids – released from the adrenal cortex. Glucocorticoid secretion, characterized by its circadian rhythm, has an important role in synchronizing peripheral clocks and rhythms downstream of the master circadian pacemaker in the suprachiasmatic nucleus. Finally, glucocorticoids are powerfully anti-inflammatory, and recent work has implicated the circadian clock in various aspects and cells of the immune system, suggesting a tight interplay of stress and circadian systems in the regulation of immunity. This mini-review summarizes our current understanding of the role of the circadian clock network in both the HPA axis and the immune system, and discusses their interactions. PMID:27199894

  3. Circadian regulation gene polymorphisms are associated with sleep disruption and duration, and circadian phase and rhythm in adults with HIV.

    PubMed

    Lee, Kathryn A; Gay, Caryl; Byun, Eeeseung; Lerdal, Anners; Pullinger, Clive R; Aouizerat, Bradley E

    2015-01-01

    Genes involved in circadian regulation, such as circadian locomotor output cycles kaput [CLOCK], cryptochrome [CRY1] and period [PER], have been associated with sleep outcomes in prior animal and human research. However, it is unclear whether polymorphisms in these genes are associated with the sleep disturbances commonly experienced by adults living with human immunodeficiency virus/acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (HIV/AIDS). Thus, the purpose of this study was to describe polymorphisms in selected circadian genes that are associated with sleep duration or disruption as well as the sleep-wake rhythm strength and phase timing among adults living with HIV/AIDS. A convenience sample of 289 adults with HIV/AIDS was recruited from HIV clinics and community sites in the San Francisco Bay Area. A wrist actigraph was worn for 72 h on weekdays to estimate sleep duration or total sleep time (TST), sleep disruption or percentage of wake after sleep onset (WASO) and several circadian rhythm parameters: mesor, amplitude, the ratio of mesor to amplitude (circadian quotient), and 24-h autocorrelation. Circadian phase measures included clock time for peak activity (acrophase) from actigraphy movement data, and bed time and final wake time from actigraphy and self-report. Genotyping was conducted for polymorphisms in five candidate genes involved in circadian regulation: CLOCK, CRY1, PER1, PER2 and PER3. Demographic and clinical variables were evaluated as potential covariates. Interactions between genotype and HIV variables (i.e. viral load, years since HIV diagnosis) were also evaluated. Controlling for potentially confounding variables (e.g. race, gender, CD4+ T-cell count, waist circumference, medication use, smoking and depressive symptoms), CLOCK was associated with WASO, 24-h autocorrelation and objectively-measured bed time; CRY1 was associated with circadian quotient; PER1 was associated with mesor and self-reported habitual wake time; PER2 was associated with TST

  4. Circadian rhythms and cancer chemotherapy.

    PubMed

    Wood, P A; Hrushesky, W J

    1996-01-01

    Temporal coordination of biologic processes with an approximately 24-h cycle (circadian) is common throughout the animal and plant kingdom and even in some prokaryotic organisms. In all organisms studied, the capability to keep biologic time is an inherited characteristic located intracellularly. These biological clocks anticipate and get the organism ready for regular environmental changes. This indicates both the ubiquity and the weight of the selective environmental pressure to keep time accurately. Several molecular strategies for biologic time keeping have apparently arisen independently several times throughout evolution. The anatomic, biochemical, and molecular mechanisms of the clock are in the process of being defined. This temporal organization at the cellular, organ, and organismic levels results in predictable differences in the capacity of plants, animals, and human beings to respond to therapeutic interventions administered at different times throughout important biologic cycles (e.g., circadian timed therapy). In the treatment of the cancer bearing host, circadian timing of surgery, anticancer drugs, radiation therapy, and biologic agents can result in improved toxicity profiles, enhanced tumor control, and improved host survival. The routine clinical application of such principles is facilitated by the availability of programmable drug delivery devices. Rhythm frequency ranges other than 24-h (e.g., low frequency: menstrual; high frequency: 10 to 120 min) may also be important to understanding health and disease and to designing successful therapy in diseases as diverse as cancer, infertility, and diabetes. PMID:8959371

  5. Phase advancing human circadian rhythms with morning bright light, afternoon melatonin, and gradually shifted sleep: can we reduce morning bright light duration?

    PubMed Central

    Crowley, Stephanie J.; Eastman, Charmane I.

    2015-01-01

    OBJECTIVE Efficient treatments to phase advance human circadian rhythms are needed to attenuate circadian misalignment and the associated negative health outcomes that accompany early morning shift work, early school start times, jet lag, and delayed sleep phase disorder. This study compared three morning bright light exposure patterns from a single light box (to mimic home treatment) in combination with afternoon melatonin. METHODS Fifty adults (27 males) aged 25.9±5.1 years participated. Sleep/dark was advanced 1 hour/day for 3 treatment days. Participants took 0.5 mg melatonin 5 hours before baseline bedtime on treatment day 1, and an hour earlier each treatment day. They were exposed to one of three bright light (~5000 lux) patterns upon waking each morning: four 30-minute exposures separated by 30 minutes of room light (2 h group); four 15-minute exposures separated by 45 minutes of room light (1 h group), and one 30-minute exposure (0.5 h group). Dim light melatonin onsets (DLMOs) before and after treatment determined the phase advance. RESULTS Compared to the 2 h group (phase shift=2.4±0.8 h), smaller phase advance shifts were seen in the 1 h (1.7±0.7 h) and 0.5 h (1.8±0.8 h) groups. The 2-hour pattern produced the largest phase advance; however, the single 30-minute bright light exposure was as effective as 1 hour of bright light spread over 3.25 h, and produced 75% of the phase shift observed with 2 hours of bright light. CONCLUSIONS A 30-minute morning bright light exposure with afternoon melatonin is an efficient treatment to phase advance human circadian rhythms. PMID:25620199

  6. A role for Drosophila ATX2 in activation of PER translation and circadian behavior.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Yong; Ling, Jinli; Yuan, Chunyan; Dubruille, Raphaëlle; Emery, Patrick

    2013-05-17

    A negative transcriptional feedback loop generates circadian rhythms in Drosophila. PERIOD (PER) is a critical state-variable in this mechanism, and its abundance is tightly regulated. We found that the Drosophila homolog of ATAXIN-2 (ATX2)--an RNA-binding protein implicated in human neurodegenerative diseases--was required for circadian locomotor behavior. ATX2 was necessary for PER accumulation in circadian pacemaker neurons and thus determined period length of circadian behavior. ATX2 was required for the function of TWENTY-FOUR (TYF), a crucial activator of PER translation. ATX2 formed a complex with TYF and promoted its interaction with polyadenylate-binding protein (PABP). Our work uncovers a role for ATX2 in circadian timing and reveals that this protein functions as an activator of PER translation in circadian neurons. PMID:23687048

  7. Cocaine Modulates Mammalian Circadian Clock Timing by Decreasing Serotonin Transport in the SCN

    PubMed Central

    Prosser, Rebecca A.; Stowie, Adam; Amicarelli, Mario; Nackenoff, Alex G.; Blakely, Randy D.; Glass, J. David

    2014-01-01

    Cocaine abuse disrupts reward and homeostatic processes through diverse processes, including those involved in circadian clock regulation. Recently we showed that cocaine administration to mice disrupts nocturnal photic phase resetting of the suprachiasmatic (SCN) circadian clock, whereas administration during the day induces non-photic phase shifts. Importantly, the same effects are seen when cocaine is applied to the SCN in vitro, where it blocks photic-like (glutamate-induced) phase shifts at night and induces phase advances during the day. Furthermore, our previous data suggest that cocaine acts in the SCN by enhancing serotonin (5-HT) signaling. For example, the in vitro actions of cocaine mimic those of 5-HT and are blocked by the 5-HT antagonist, metergoline, but not the dopamine receptor antagonist, fluphenazine. Although our data are consistent with cocaine acting through enhance 5-HT signaling, the nonselective actions of cocaine as an antagonist of monoamine transporters raises the question of whether inhibition of the 5-HT transporter (SERT) is key to its circadian effects. Here we investigate this issue using transgenic mice expressing a SERT that exhibits normal 5-HT recognition and transport but significantly reduced cocaine potency (SERT Met172). Circadian patterns of SCN behavioral and neuronal activity did not differ between WT and SERT Met172 mice, nor did they differ in the ability of the 5-HT1A,2,7 receptor agonist, 8-OH-DPAT to reset SCN clock phase, consistent with the normal SERT expression and activity in the transgenic mice. However, 1) cocaine administration does not induce phase advances when administered in vivo or in vitro in SERT Met172 mice; 2) cocaine does not block photic or glutamate-induced (phase shifts in SERT Met172 mice; and 3) cocaine does not induce long-term changes in free-running period in SERT Met172 mice. We conclude that SERT antagonism is required for the phase shifting of the SCN circadian clock induced by cocaine

  8. Impact of nutrients on circadian rhythmicity

    PubMed Central

    Oosterman, Johanneke E.; Kalsbeek, Andries; la Fleur, Susanne E.

    2014-01-01

    The suprachiasmatic nucleus (SCN) in the mammalian hypothalamus functions as an endogenous pacemaker that generates and maintains circadian rhythms throughout the body. Next to this central clock, peripheral oscillators exist in almost all mammalian tissues. Whereas the SCN is mainly entrained to the environment by light, peripheral clocks are entrained by various factors, of which feeding/fasting is the most important. Desynchronization between the central and peripheral clocks by, for instance, altered timing of food intake can lead to uncoupling of peripheral clocks from the central pacemaker and is, in humans, related to the development of metabolic disorders, including obesity and Type 2 diabetes. Diets high in fat or sugar have been shown to alter circadian clock function. This review discusses the recent findings concerning the influence of nutrients, in particular fatty acids and glucose, on behavioral and molecular circadian rhythms and will summarize critical studies describing putative mechanisms by which these nutrients are able to alter normal circadian rhythmicity, in the SCN, in non-SCN brain areas, as well as in peripheral organs. As the effects of fat and sugar on the clock could be through alterations in energy status, the role of specific nutrient sensors will be outlined, as well as the molecular studies linking these components to metabolism. Understanding the impact of specific macronutrients on the circadian clock will allow for guidance toward the composition and timing of meals optimal for physiological health, as well as putative therapeutic targets to regulate the molecular clock. PMID:25519730

  9. The effects on human sleep and circadian rhythms of 17 days of continuous bedrest in the absence of daylight

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Monk, T. H.; Buysse, D. J.; Billy, B. D.; Kennedy, K. S.; Kupfer, D. J.

    1997-01-01

    As part of a larger bedrest study involving various life science experiments, a study was conducted on the effects of 17 days of continuous bedrest and elimination of daylight on circadian rectal temperature rhythms, mood, alertness, and sleep (objective and diary) in eight healthy middle-aged men. Sleep was timed from 2300 to 0700 hours throughout. Three 72-hour measurement blocks were compared: ambulatory prebedrest, early bedrest (days 5-7), and late bedrest (days 15-17). Temperature rhythms showed reduced amplitude and later phases resulting from the bedrest conditions. This was associated with longer nocturnal sleep onset latencies and poorer subjectively rated sleep but with no reliable changes in any of the other sleep parameters. Daily changes in posture and/or exposure to daylight appear to be important determinants of a properly entrained circadian system.

  10. Circadian clocks and cell division

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Evolution has selected a system of two intertwined cell cycles: the cell division cycle (CDC) and the daily (circadian) biological clock. The circadian clock keeps track of solar time and programs biological processes to occur at environmentally appropriate times. One of these processes is the CDC, which is often gated by the circadian clock. The intermeshing of these two cell cycles is probably responsible for the observation that disruption of the circadian system enhances susceptibility to some kinds of cancer. The core mechanism underlying the circadian clockwork has been thought to be a transcription and translation feedback loop (TTFL), but recent evidence from studies with cyanobacteria, synthetic oscillators and immortalized cell lines suggests that the core circadian pacemaking mechanism that gates cell division in mammalian cells could be a post-translational oscillator (PTO). PMID:20890114

  11. Monitoring circadian time in rat plasma using a secreted Cypridina luciferase reporter.

    PubMed

    Yamada, Yoshiko; Nishide, Shin-Ya; Nakajima, Yoshihiro; Watanabe, Toshiyuki; Ohmiya, Yoshihiro; Honma, Ken-Ichi; Honma, Sato

    2013-08-15

    A firefly luciferase reporter enabled us to monitor promoter activity in vivo as well as ex vivo; however, this requires a sufficient supply of the substrate luciferin and specific monitoring devices. To overcome these disadvantages, we developed transgenic rats carrying a secreted enzyme Cypridina luciferase (CLuc) reporter under the promoter of clock gene Per2 (Per2-CLuc). Per2-CLuc activity in serially sampled blood from freely moving rats exhibited robust circadian rhythms with a peak at early morning. The Per2-CLuc bioluminescence could be quantified even with approximately 100pl of plasma. Plasma Per2-CLuc rhythms were phase reversed, and the level was reduced by restricting food access for 2h during the light phase, suggesting that the plasma Per2-CLuc rhythms reflect the phase of peripheral clocks entrained to feeding cues as well as fuel metabolism. Fasting for 2days did not alter the circadian Per2-CLuc rhythms in rats, suggesting that feeding per se did not affect the circadian Per2-CLuc rhythms. Tissue-specific Per2-CLuc rhythms were observed in culture medium of peripheral tissues. The Per2-CLuc reporter is a powerful tool to access gene expression in vivo as well as ex vivo with ordinary laboratory equipment. PMID:23624321

  12. Modelling changes in sleep timing and duration across the lifespan: Changes in circadian rhythmicity or sleep homeostasis?

    PubMed

    Skeldon, Anne C; Derks, Gianne; Dijk, Derk-Jan

    2016-08-01

    Sleep changes across the lifespan, with a delay in sleep timing and a reduction in slow wave sleep seen in adolescence, followed by further reductions in slow wave sleep but a gradual drift to earlier timing during healthy ageing. The mechanisms underlying changes in sleep timing are unclear: are they primarily related to changes in circadian processes, or to a reduction in the neural activity dependent build up of homeostatic sleep pressure during wake, or both? We review existing studies of age-related changes to sleep and explore how mathematical models can explain observed changes. Model simulations show that typical changes in sleep timing and duration, from adolesence to old age, can be understood in two ways: either as a consequence of a simultaneous reduction in the amplitude of the circadian wake-propensity rhythm and the neural activity dependent build-up of homeostatic sleep pressure during wake; or as a consequence of reduced homeostatic sleep pressure alone. A reduction in the homeostatic pressure also explains greater vulnerability of sleep to disruption and reduced daytime sleep-propensity in healthy ageing. This review highlights the important role of sleep homeostasis in sleep timing. It shows that the same phenotypic response may have multiple underlying causes, and identifies aspects of sleep to target to correct delayed sleep in adolescents and advanced sleep in later life. PMID:26545247

  13. Circadian gene variants in cancer

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Humans as diurnal beings are active during the day and rest at night. This daily oscillation of behavior and physiology is driven by an endogenous circadian clock not environmental cues. In modern societies, changes in lifestyle have led to a frequent disruption of the endogenous circadian homeostas...

  14. Optimal Schedules of Light Exposure for Rapidly Correcting Circadian Misalignment

    PubMed Central

    Serkh, Kirill; Forger, Daniel B.

    2014-01-01

    Jet lag arises from a misalignment of circadian biological timing with the timing of human activity, and is caused by rapid transmeridian travel. Jet lag's symptoms, such as depressed cognitive alertness, also arise from work and social schedules misaligned with the timing of the circadian clock. Using experimentally validated mathematical models, we develop a new methodology to find mathematically optimal schedules of light exposure and avoidance for rapidly re-entraining the human circadian system. In simulations, our schedules are found to significantly outperform other recently proposed schedules. Moreover, our schedules appear to be significantly more robust to both noise in light and to inter-individual variations in endogenous circadian period than other proposed schedules. By comparing the optimal schedules for thousands of different situations, and by using general mathematical arguments, we are also able to translate our findings into general principles of optimal circadian re-entrainment. These principles include: 1) a class of schedules where circadian amplitude is only slightly perturbed, optimal for dim light and for small shifts 2) another class of schedules where shifting occurs along the shortest path in phase-space, optimal for bright light and for large shifts 3) the determination that short light pulses are less effective than sustained light if the goal is to re-entrain quickly, and 4) the determination that length of daytime should be significantly shorter when delaying the clock than when advancing it. PMID:24722195

  15. Physiology of circadian entrainment.

    PubMed

    Golombek, Diego A; Rosenstein, Ruth E

    2010-07-01

    Mammalian circadian rhythms are controlled by endogenous biological oscillators, including a master clock located in the hypothalamic suprachiasmatic nuclei (SCN). Since the period of this oscillation is of approximately 24 h, to keep synchrony with the environment, circadian rhythms need to be entrained daily by means of Zeitgeber ("time giver") signals, such as the light-dark cycle. Recent advances in the neurophysiology and molecular biology of circadian rhythmicity allow a better understanding of synchronization. In this review we cover several aspects of the mechanisms for photic entrainment of mammalian circadian rhythms, including retinal sensitivity to light by means of novel photopigments as well as circadian variations in the retina that contribute to the regulation of retinal physiology. Downstream from the retina, we examine retinohypothalamic communication through neurotransmitter (glutamate, aspartate, pituitary adenylate cyclase-activating polypeptide) interaction with SCN receptors and the resulting signal transduction pathways in suprachiasmatic neurons, as well as putative neuron-glia interactions. Finally, we describe and analyze clock gene expression and its importance in entrainment mechanisms, as well as circadian disorders or retinal diseases related to entrainment deficits, including experimental and clinical treatments. PMID:20664079

  16. Circadian rhythms: glucocorticoids and arthritis.

    PubMed

    Cutolo, Maurizio; Sulli, Alberto; Pizzorni, Carmen; Secchi, Maria Elena; Soldano, Stefano; Seriolo, Bruno; Straub, Rainer H; Otsa, Kati; Maestroni, Georges J

    2006-06-01

    Circadian rhythms are driven by biological clocks and are endogenous in origin. Therefore, circadian changes in the metabolism or secretion of endogenous glucocorticoids are certainly responsible in part for the time-dependent changes observed in the inflammatory response and arthritis. More recently, melatonin (MLT), another circadian hormone that is the secretory product of the pineal gland, has been found implicated in the time-dependent inflammatory reaction with effects opposite those of cortisol. Interestingly, cortisol and MLT show an opposite response to the light. The light conditions in the early morning have a strong impact on the morning cortisol peak, whereas MLT is synthesized in a strictly nocturnal pattern. Recently, a diurnal rhythmicity in healthy humans between cellular (Th1 type) or humoral (Th2 type) immune responses has been found and related to immunomodulatory actions of cortisol and MLT. The interferon (IFN)-gamma/interleukin (IL)-10 ratio peaked during the early morning and correlated negatively with plasma cortisol and positively with plasma MLT. Accordingly, the intensity of the arthritic pain varies consistently as a function of the hour of the day: pain is greater after waking up in the morning than in the afternoon or evening. The reduced cortisol and adrenal androgen secretion, observed during testing in rheumatoid arthritis (RA) patients not treated with glucocoticoids, should be clearly considered as a "relative adrenal insufficiency" in the presence of a sustained inflammatory process, and allows Th1 type cytokines to be produced in higher amounts during the late night. In conclusion, the right timing (early morning) for the glucocorticoid therapy in arthritis is fundamental and well justified by the circadian rhythms of the inflammatory mechanisms. PMID:16855156

  17. The Circadian Clock in Murine Chondrocytes Regulates Genes Controlling Key Aspects of Cartilage Homeostasis

    PubMed Central

    Gossan, Nicole; Zeef, Leo; Hensman, James; Hughes, Alun; Bateman, John F; Rowley, Lynn; Little, Christopher B; Piggins, Hugh D; Rattray, Magnus; Boot-Handford, Raymond P; Meng, Qing-Jun

    2013-01-01

    ObjectiveTo characterize the circadian clock in murine cartilage tissue and identify tissue-specific clock target genes, and to investigate whether the circadian clock changes during aging or during cartilage degeneration using an experimental mouse model of osteoarthritis (OA). MethodsCartilage explants were obtained from aged and young adult mice after transduction with the circadian clock fusion protein reporter PER2::luc, and real-time bioluminescence recordings were used to characterize the properties of the clock. Time-series microarrays were performed on mouse cartilage tissue to identify genes expressed in a circadian manner. Rhythmic genes were confirmed by quantitative reverse transcription–polymerase chain reaction using mouse tissue, primary chondrocytes, and a human chondrocyte cell line. Experimental OA was induced in mice by destabilization of the medial meniscus (DMM), and articular cartilage samples were microdissected and subjected to microarray analysis. ResultsMouse cartilage tissue and a human chondrocyte cell line were found to contain intrinsic molecular circadian clocks. The cartilage clock could be reset by temperature signals, while the circadian period was temperature compensated. PER2::luc bioluminescence demonstrated that circadian oscillations were significantly lower in amplitude in cartilage from aged mice. Time-series microarray analyses of the mouse tissue identified the first circadian transcriptome in cartilage, revealing that 615 genes (∼3.9% of the expressed genes) displayed a circadian pattern of expression. This included genes involved in cartilage homeostasis and survival, as well as genes with potential importance in the pathogenesis of OA. Several clock genes were disrupted in the early stages of cartilage degeneration in the DMM mouse model of OA. ConclusionThese results reveal an autonomous circadian clock in chondrocytes that can be implicated in key aspects of cartilage biology and pathology. Consequently

  18. Evening use of light-emitting eReaders negatively affects sleep, circadian timing, and next-morning alertness

    PubMed Central

    Chang, Anne-Marie; Aeschbach, Daniel; Duffy, Jeanne F.; Czeisler, Charles A.

    2015-01-01

    In the past 50 y, there has been a decline in average sleep duration and quality, with adverse consequences on general health. A representative survey of 1,508 American adults recently revealed that 90% of Americans used some type of electronics at least a few nights per week within 1 h before bedtime. Mounting evidence from countries around the world shows the negative impact of such technology use on sleep. This negative impact on sleep may be due to the short-wavelength–enriched light emitted by these electronic devices, given that artificial-light exposure has been shown experimentally to produce alerting effects, suppress melatonin, and phase-shift the biological clock. A few reports have shown that these devices suppress melatonin levels, but little is known about the effects on circadian phase or the following sleep episode, exposing a substantial gap in our knowledge of how this increasingly popular technology affects sleep. Here we compare the biological effects of reading an electronic book on a light-emitting device (LE-eBook) with reading a printed book in the hours before bedtime. Participants reading an LE-eBook took longer to fall asleep and had reduced evening sleepiness, reduced melatonin secretion, later timing of their circadian clock, and reduced next-morning alertness than when reading a printed book. These results demonstrate that evening exposure to an LE-eBook phase-delays the circadian clock, acutely suppresses melatonin, and has important implications for understanding the impact of such technologies on sleep, performance, health, and safety. PMID:25535358

  19. Evening use of light-emitting eReaders negatively affects sleep, circadian timing, and next-morning alertness.

    PubMed

    Chang, Anne-Marie; Aeschbach, Daniel; Duffy, Jeanne F; Czeisler, Charles A

    2015-01-27

    In the past 50 y, there has been a decline in average sleep duration and quality, with adverse consequences on general health. A representative survey of 1,508 American adults recently revealed that 90% of Americans used some type of electronics at least a few nights per week within 1 h before bedtime. Mounting evidence from countries around the world shows the negative impact of such technology use on sleep. This negative impact on sleep may be due to the short-wavelength-enriched light emitted by these electronic devices, given that artificial-light exposure has been shown experimentally to produce alerting effects, suppress melatonin, and phase-shift the biological clock. A few reports have shown that these devices suppress melatonin levels, but little is known about the effects on circadian phase or the following sleep episode, exposing a substantial gap in our knowledge of how this increasingly popular technology affects sleep. Here we compare the biological effects of reading an electronic book on a light-emitting device (LE-eBook) with reading a printed book in the hours before bedtime. Participants reading an LE-eBook took longer to fall asleep and had reduced evening sleepiness, reduced melatonin secretion, later timing of their circadian clock, and reduced next-morning alertness than when reading a printed book. These results demonstrate that evening exposure to an LE-eBook phase-delays the circadian clock, acutely suppresses melatonin, and has important implications for understanding the impact of such technologies on sleep, performance, health, and safety. PMID:25535358

  20. Nuclear receptors linking circadian rhythms and cardiometabolic control

    PubMed Central

    Duez, Hélène; Staels, Bart

    2010-01-01

    Many behavioral and physiological processes, including locomotor activity, blood pressure, body temperature, sleep(fasting)/wake(feeding) cycles as well as metabolic regulation display diurnal rhythms. The biological clock ensures proper metabolic alignment of energy substrate availability and processing. Studies in animals and humans highlight a strong link between circadian disorders and altered metabolic responses and cardiovascular events. Shiftwork, for instance, increases the risk to develop metabolic abnormalities resembling the Metabolic Syndrome. Nuclear receptors have long been known as metabolic regulators. Several of them (ie. Rev-erbα, RORα, PPARs) are subjected to circadian variations and are integral components of the molecular clock machinery. In turn, these nuclear receptors regulate downstream target genes in a circadian manner, acting to properly gate metabolic events to the appropriate circadian time window. PMID:20631353

  1. Real-time recording of circadian liver gene expression in freely moving mice reveals the phase-setting behavior of hepatocyte clocks.

    PubMed

    Saini, Camille; Liani, André; Curie, Thomas; Gos, Pascal; Kreppel, Florian; Emmenegger, Yann; Bonacina, Luigi; Wolf, Jean-Pierre; Poget, Yves-Alain; Franken, Paul; Schibler, Ueli

    2013-07-01

    The mammalian circadian timing system consists of a master pacemaker in the suprachiasmatic nucleus (SCN) in the hypothalamus, which is thought to set the phase of slave oscillators in virtually all body cells. However, due to the lack of appropriate in vivo recording technologies, it has been difficult to study how the SCN synchronizes oscillators in peripheral tissues. Here we describe the real-time recording of bioluminescence emitted by hepatocytes expressing circadian luciferase reporter genes in freely moving mice. The technology employs a device dubbed RT-Biolumicorder, which consists of a cylindrical cage with reflecting conical walls that channel photons toward a photomultiplier tube. The monitoring of circadian liver gene expression revealed that hepatocyte oscillators of SCN-lesioned mice synchronized more rapidly to feeding cycles than hepatocyte clocks of intact mice. Hence, the SCN uses signaling pathways that counteract those of feeding rhythms when their phase is in conflict with its own phase. PMID:23824542

  2. Real-time recording of circadian liver gene expression in freely moving mice reveals the phase-setting behavior of hepatocyte clocks

    PubMed Central

    Saini, Camille; Liani, André; Curie, Thomas; Gos, Pascal; Kreppel, Florian; Emmenegger, Yann; Bonacina, Luigi; Wolf, Jean-Pierre; Poget, Yves-Alain; Franken, Paul; Schibler, Ueli

    2013-01-01

    The mammalian circadian timing system consists of a master pacemaker in the suprachiasmatic nucleus (SCN) in the hypothalamus, which is thought to set the phase of slave oscillators in virtually all body cells. However, due to the lack of appropriate in vivo recording technologies, it has been difficult to study how the SCN synchronizes oscillators in peripheral tissues. Here we describe the real-time recording of bioluminescence emitted by hepatocytes expressing circadian luciferase reporter genes in freely moving mice. The technology employs a device dubbed RT-Biolumicorder, which consists of a cylindrical cage with reflecting conical walls that channel photons toward a photomultiplier tube. The monitoring of circadian liver gene expression revealed that hepatocyte oscillators of SCN-lesioned mice synchronized more rapidly to feeding cycles than hepatocyte clocks of intact mice. Hence, the SCN uses signaling pathways that counteract those of feeding rhythms when their phase is in conflict with its own phase. PMID:23824542

  3. Circadian rhythms, sleep, and performance in space

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mallis, M. M.; DeRoshia, C. W.

    2005-01-01

    Maintaining optimal alertness and neurobehavioral functioning during space operations is critical to enable the National Aeronautics and Space Administration's (NASA's) vision "to extend humanity's reach to the Moon, Mars and beyond" to become a reality. Field data have demonstrated that sleep times and performance of crewmembers can be compromised by extended duty days, irregular work schedules, high workload, and varying environmental factors. This paper documents evidence of significant sleep loss and disruption of circadian rhythms in astronauts and associated performance decrements during several space missions, which demonstrates the need to develop effective countermeasures. Both sleep and circadian disruptions have been identified in the Behavioral Health and Performance (BH&P) area and the Advanced Human Support Technology (AHST) area of NASA's Bioastronautics Critical Path Roadmap. Such disruptions could have serious consequences on the effectiveness, health, and safety of astronaut crews, thus reducing the safety margin and increasing the chances of an accident or incident. These decrements oftentimes can be difficult to detect and counter effectively in restrictive operational environments. NASA is focusing research on the development of optimal sleep/wake schedules and countermeasure timing and application to help mitigate the cumulative effects of sleep and circadian disruption and enhance operational performance. Investing research in humans is one of NASA's building blocks that will allow for both short- and long-duration space missions and help NASA in developing approaches to manage and overcome the human limitations of space travel. In addition to reviewing the current state of knowledge concerning sleep and circadian disruptions during space operations, this paper provides an overview of NASA's broad research goals. Also, NASA-funded research, designed to evaluate the relationships between sleep quality, circadian rhythm stability, and

  4. Circadian rhythms, sleep, and performance in space.

    PubMed

    Mallis, M M; DeRoshia, C W

    2005-06-01

    Maintaining optimal alertness and neurobehavioral functioning during space operations is critical to enable the National Aeronautics and Space Administration's (NASA's) vision "to extend humanity's reach to the Moon, Mars and beyond" to become a reality. Field data have demonstrated that sleep times and performance of crewmembers can be compromised by extended duty days, irregular work schedules, high workload, and varying environmental factors. This paper documents evidence of significant sleep loss and disruption of circadian rhythms in astronauts and associated performance decrements during several space missions, which demonstrates the need to develop effective countermeasures. Both sleep and circadian disruptions have been identified in the Behavioral Health and Performance (BH&P) area and the Advanced Human Support Technology (AHST) area of NASA's Bioastronautics Critical Path Roadmap. Such disruptions could have serious consequences on the effectiveness, health, and safety of astronaut crews, thus reducing the safety margin and increasing the chances of an accident or incident. These decrements oftentimes can be difficult to detect and counter effectively in restrictive operational environments. NASA is focusing research on the development of optimal sleep/wake schedules and countermeasure timing and application to help mitigate the cumulative effects of sleep and circadian disruption and enhance operational performance. Investing research in humans is one of NASA's building blocks that will allow for both short- and long-duration space missions and help NASA in developing approaches to manage and overcome the human limitations of space travel. In addition to reviewing the current state of knowledge concerning sleep and circadian disruptions during space operations, this paper provides an overview of NASA's broad research goals. Also, NASA-funded research, designed to evaluate the relationships between sleep quality, circadian rhythm stability, and

  5. Time's arrow flies like a bird: two paradoxes for avian circadian biology.

    PubMed

    Cassone, Vincent M; Paulose, Jiffin K; Whitfield-Rucker, Melissa G; Peters, Jennifer L

    2009-09-01

    Biological timekeeping in birds is a fundamental feature of avian physiology, behavior and ecology. The physiological basis for avian circadian rhythmicity has pointed to a multi-oscillator system of mutually coupled pacemakers in the pineal gland, eyes and hypothalamic suprachiasmatic nuclei (SCN). In passerines, the role of the pineal gland and its hormone melatonin is particularly important. More recent molecular biological studies have pointed to a highly conserved mechanism involving rhythmic transcription and translation of "clock genes". However, studies attempting to reconcile the physiological role of pineal melatonin with molecular studies have largely failed. Recent work in our laboratory has suggested that melatonin-sensitive physiological processes are only loosely coupled to transcriptional oscillations. Similarly, although the pineal gland has been shown to be critical for overt circadian behaviors, its role in annual cycles of reproductive function appears to be minimal. Recent work on the seasonal control of birdsong, however, suggests that, although the pineal gland does not directly affect gonadal cycles, it is important for seasonal changes in song. Experimental analyses that address these paradoxes will shed light on the roles the biological clock play in birds and in vertebrates in general. PMID:19523398

  6. Research on sleep, circadian rhythms and aging - Applications to manned spaceflight

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Czeisler, Charles A.; Chiasera, August J.; Duffy, Jeanne F.

    1991-01-01

    Disorders of sleep and circadian rhythmicity are characteristic of both advancing age and manned spaceflight. Sleep fragmentation, reduced nocturnal sleep tendency and sleep efficiency, reduced daytime alertness, and increased daytime napping are common to both of these conditions. Recent research on the pathophysiology and treatment of disrupted sleep in older people has led to a better understanding of how the human circadian pacemaker regulates the timing of the daily sleep-wake cycle and how it responds to the periodic changes in the light-dark cycle to which we are ordinarily exposed. These findings have led to new treatments for some of the sleep disorders common to older individuals, using carefully timed exposure to bright light and darkness to manipulate the phase and/or amplitude of the circadian timing system. These insights and treatment approaches have direct applications in the design of countermeasures allowing astronauts to overcome some of the challenges which manned spaceflight poses for the human circadian timing system. We have conducted an operational feasibility study on the use of scheduled exposure to bright light and darkness prior to launch in order to facilitate adaptation of the circadian system of a NASA Space Shuttle crew to the altered sleep-wake schedule required for their mission. The results of this study illustrate how an understanding of the properties of the human circadian timing system and the consequences of circadian disruption can be applied to manned spaceflight.

  7. Evidence for a Circadian Effect on the Reduction of Human Growth Hormone Gene Expression in Response to Excess Caloric Intake.

    PubMed

    Vakili, Hana; Jin, Yan; Cattini, Peter A

    2016-06-24

    Rhythmicity of biological functions is fundamental for optimal adaptations to environmental cues. Growth hormone (GH) is a major metabolic homeostatic factor that is secreted with a circadian pattern, but whether it is synthesized rhythmically is unknown. We used transgenic mice containing the human (h) GH gene (hGH1) locus to investigate the rhythmicity of hGH synthesis and secretion and to show that RNA and secreted protein levels oscillate over a 24-h cycle. Analysis of hGH1 promoter sequences revealed an enhancer motif (E-box) element that binds the circadian transcriptional machinery (Bmal1 and Clock). Furthermore, Bmal1/Clock were able to transactivate the hGH1 promoter, and mutation of this E-box element adversely affected basal activity after gene transfer. The ability of Bmal1 to bind the hGH1 promoter region containing the E-box element was confirmed in the hGH1 transgenic mouse pituitary in situ Occupancy was reduced in mice fed a high fat diet during the light (inactive) stage of the daily cycle in mice and corresponded to a decrease in hGH1 RNA levels. The decreases in occupancy and RNA levels were not seen, however, during the dark (active) stage. A chromatin loop required for efficient postnatal hGH1 expression was negatively affected by the high fat diet in the light but not dark stage similar to the pattern observed with Bmal1 association with the promoter region. This is the first evidence that hGH synthesis follows a diurnal rhythm and of dynamic associations of the circadian machinery with a component of a chromosomal structure of the hGH1 locus that is essential for efficient expression. PMID:27151213

  8. Influences of horizontal hypokinesia on performance and circadian physiological rhythms in female humans

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Winget, C. M.; Deroshia, C. W.; Sandler, H.

    1982-01-01

    Eight females from 35-45 yr of age were subjected to seven days of ambulatory control, seven days of bed rest, and a five day recovery period, with 30 min of centrifugation on day seven of bedrest to determine the effects of weightlessness on the circadian rhythms of females in that age group. Heart rate and rectal temperature (RT) were monitored and each subject was tested in a flight simulator twice a day in conditions of varying levels of turbulence. The flight simulations were run during the morning and acrophase of the circadian RT and performance errors wery monitored for 6 min. No significant differences were detected in the group performance data pre-, during, and post-bedrest, although better performance in the simulator was observed after the centrifuge exposure. An RT phase shift was statistically significant between pre- and during bedrest stages.

  9. Circadian rhythms and metabolic syndrome: from experimental genetics to human disease

    PubMed Central

    Maury, Eleonore; Ramsey, Kathryn Moynihan; Bass, Joseph

    2009-01-01

    The incidence of the metabolic syndrome represents a spectrum of disorders that continue to increase across the industrialized world. Both genetic and environmental factors contribute to metabolic syndrome and recent evidence has emerged to suggest that alterations in circadian systems and sleep participate in the pathogenesis of the disease. In this review, we highlight studies at the intersection of clinical medicine and experimental genetics that pinpoint how perturbations of the internal clock system, and sleep, constitute risk factors for disorders including obesity, diabetes mellitus, cardiovascular disease, thrombosis and even inflammation. An exciting aspect of the field has been the integration of behavioural and physiological approaches, and the emerging insight into both neural and peripheral tissues in disease pathogenesis. Consideration of the cell and molecular links between disorders of circadian rhythms and sleep with metabolic syndrome has begun to open new opportunities for mechanism-based therapeutics. PMID:20167942

  10. An epithelial circadian clock controls pulmonary inflammation and glucocorticoid action

    PubMed Central

    Gibbs, Julie; Ince, Louise; Matthews, Laura; Mei, Junjie; Bell, Thomas; Yang, Nan; Saer, Ben; Begley, Nicola; Poolman, Toryn; Pariollaud, Marie; Farrow, Stuart; Demayo, Francesco; Hussell, Tracy; Worthen, G Scott; Ray, David; Loudon, Andrew

    2014-01-01

    The circadian system is as an important regulator of immune function. Human inflammatory lung diseases frequently show time-of-day variation in symptom severity and lung function, but the mechanisms and cell types that are underlying these effects remain unclear. We show that pulmonary antibacterial responses are modulated by a circadian clock within epithelial club (Clara) cells. These drive circadian neutrophil recruitment to the lung via the chemokine CXCL5. Genetic ablation of the clock gene Bmal1 (also called Arntl or MOP3) in bronchiolar cells disrupts rhythmic Cxcl5 expression, resulting in exaggerated inflammatory responses to lipopolysaccharide and bacterial infection. Adrenalectomy blocks rhythmic inflammatory responses and the circadian regulation of CXCL5, suggesting a key role for the adrenal axis in driving CXCL5 expression and pulmonary neutrophil recruitment. Glucocorticoid receptor occupancy at the Cxcl5 locus shows circadian oscillations, but this is disrupted in mice with bronchiole-specific ablation of Bmal1, leading to enhanced CXCL5 expression despite normal corticosteroid secretion. In clock-gene disrupted mice the synthetic glucocorticoid dexamethasone loses anti-inflammatory efficacy. We now define a regulatory mechanism that links the circadian clock and glucocorticoid hormones to control both time-of-day variation and also the magnitude of pulmonary inflammation and responses to bacterial infection. PMID:25064128

  11. Circadian Modulation of Alcohol-Induced Sedation and Recovery in Male and Female Drosophila.

    PubMed

    De Nobrega, Aliza K; Lyons, Lisa C

    2016-04-01

    Delineating the factors that affect behavioral and neurological responses to alcohol is critical to facilitate measures for preventing or treating alcohol abuse. The high degree of conserved molecular and physiological processes makes Drosophila melanogaster a valuable model for investigating circadian interactions with alcohol-induced behaviors and examining sex-specific differences in alcohol sensitivity. We found that wild-type Drosophila exhibited rhythms in alcohol-induced sedation under light-dark and constant dark conditions with considerably greater alcohol exposure necessary to induce sedation during the late (subjective) day and peak sensitivity to alcohol occurring during the late (subjective) night. The circadian clock also modulated the recovery from alcohol-induced sedation with flies regaining motor control significantly faster during the late (subjective) day. As predicted, the circadian rhythms in sedation and recovery were absent in flies with a mutation in the circadian gene period or arrhythmic flies housed in constant light conditions. Flies lacking a functional circadian clock were more sensitive to the effects of alcohol with significantly longer recovery times. Similar to other animals and humans, Drosophila exhibit sex-specific differences in alcohol sensitivity. We investigated whether the circadian clock modulated the rhythms in the loss-of-righting reflex, alcohol-induced sedation, and recovery differently in males and females. We found that both sexes demonstrated circadian rhythms in the loss-of-righting reflex and sedation with the differences in alcohol sensitivity between males and females most pronounced during the late subjective day. Recovery of motor reflexes following alcohol sedation also exhibited circadian modulation in male and female flies, although the circadian clock did not modulate the difference in recovery times between the sexes. These studies provide a framework outlining how the circadian clock modulates alcohol

  12. Circadian gene variants in cancer

    PubMed Central

    Kettner, Nicole M.; Katchy, Chinenye A.; Fu, Loning

    2014-01-01

    Humans as diurnal beings are active during the day and rest at night. This daily oscillation of behavior and physiology is driven by an endogenous circadian clock not environmental cues. In modern societies, changes in lifestyle have led to a frequent disruption of the endogenous circadian homeostasis leading to increased risk of various diseases including cancer. The clock is operated by the feedback loops of circadian genes and controls daily physiology by coupling cell proliferation and metabolism, DNA damage repair, and apoptosis in peripheral tissues with physical activity, energy homeostasis, immune and neuroendocrine functions at the organismal level. Recent studies have revealed that defects in circadian genes due to targeted gene ablation in animal models or single nucleotide polymorphism, deletion, deregulation and/or epigenetic silencing in humans are closely associated with increased risk of cancer. In addition, disruption of circadian rhythm can disrupt the molecular clock in peripheral tissues in the absence of circadian gene mutations. Circadian disruption has recently been recognized as an independent cancer risk factor. Further study of the mechanism of clock-controlled tumor suppression will have a significant impact on human health by improving the efficiencies of cancer prevention and treatment. PMID:24901356

  13. Vitamin B12 enhances the phase-response of circadian melatonin rhythm to a single bright light exposure in humans.

    PubMed

    Hashimoto, S; Kohsaka, M; Morita, N; Fukuda, N; Honma, S; Honma, K

    1996-12-13

    Eight young males were subjected to a single blind cross-over test to see the effects of vitamin B12 (methylcobalamin; VB12) on the phase-response of the circadian melatonin rhythm to a single bright light exposure. VB12 (0.5 mg/day) or vehicle was injected intravenously at 1230 h for 11 days, which was followed by oral administration (2 mg x 3/day) for 7 days. A serial blood sampling was performed under dim light condition (less than 200 lx) and plasma melatonin rhythm was determined before and after a single bright light exposure (2500 lx for 3 h) at 0700 h. The melatonin rhythm before the light exposure showed a smaller amplitude in the VB12 trial than in the placebo. The light exposure phase-advanced the melatonin rhythm significantly in the VB12 trail, but not in the placebo. These findings indicate that VB12 enhances the light-induced phase-shift in the human circadian rhythm. PMID:8981490

  14. Insight into a Physiological Role for the EC Night-Time Repressor in the Arabidopsis Circadian Clock.

    PubMed

    Mizuno, Takeshi; Kitayama, Miki; Takayama, Chieko; Yamashino, Takafumi

    2015-09-01

    Life cycle adaptation to seasonal variation in photoperiod and temperature is a major determinant of ecological success of widespread domestication of Arabidopsis thaliana. The circadian clock plays a role in the underlying mechanism for adaptation. Nevertheless, the mechanism by which the circadian clock tracks seasonal changes in photoperiod and temperature is a longstanding subject of research in the field. We previously showed that a set of the target genes (i.e. GI, LNK1. PRR9 and PRR7) of the Evening Complex (EC) consisting of LUX-ELF3-ELF4 is synergistically induced in response to both warm-night and night-light signals. Here, we further show that the responses occur within a wide range of growth-compatible temperatures (16-28°C) in response to a small change in temperature (Δ4°C). A dim light pulse (<1 µmol m(-2) s(-1)) causes the enhanced effect on the transcription of EC targets. The night-light pulse antagonizes against a positive effect of the cool-night signal on the EC activity. The mechanism of double-checking external temperature and light signals through the EC nighttime repressor might enable plants to ignore (or tolerate) daily fluctuation of ambient temperature within a short time interval in their natural habitats. Taken together, the EC night-time repressor might play a physiological role in tracking seasonal variation in photoperiod and temperature by conservatively double-checking both the light and temperature conditions. Another EC target output gene PIF4 regulating plant morphologies is also regulated by both the temperature and light stimuli during the night. Hence, the EC night-time repressor is also implicated in a physiological output of the PIF4-mediated regulation of morphologies in response to seasonal variation in photoperiod and ambient temperature. PMID:26108788

  15. Circadian Rhythm Sleep Disorders

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Min Ju; Lee, Jung Hie; Duffy, Jeanne F.

    2014-01-01

    Objective To review circadian rhythm sleep disorders, including underlying causes, diagnostic considerations, and typical treatments. Methods Literature review and discussion of specific cases. Results Survey studies 1,2 suggest that up to 3% of the adult population suffers from a circadian rhythm sleep disorder (CRSD). However, these sleep disorders are often confused with insomnia, and an estimated 10% of adult and 16% of adolescent sleep disorders patients may have a CRSD 3-6. While some CRSD (such as jet lag) can be self-limiting, others when untreated can lead to adverse medical, psychological, and social consequences. The International Classification of Sleep Disorders classifies CRSD as dyssomnias, with six subtypes: Advanced Sleep Phase Type, Delayed Sleep Phase Type, Irregular Sleep Wake Type, Free Running Type, Jet Lag Type, and Shift Work Type. The primary clinical characteristic of all CRSD is an inability to fall asleep and wake at the desired time. It is believed that CRSD arise from a problem with the internal biological clock (circadian timing system) and/or misalignment between the circadian timing system and the external 24-hour environment. This misalignment can be the result of biological and/or behavioral factors. CRSD can be confused with other sleep or medical disorders. Conclusions Circadian rhythm sleep disorders are a distinct class of sleep disorders characterized by a mismatch between the desired timing of sleep and the ability to fall asleep and remain asleep. If untreated, CRSD can lead to insomnia and excessive daytime sleepiness, with negative medical, psychological, and social consequences. It is important for physicians to recognize potential circadian rhythm sleep disorders so that appropriate diagnosis, treatment, and referral can be made. PMID:25368503

  16. Circadian rhythms in healthy aging--effects downstream from the pacemaker

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Monk, T. H.; Kupfer, D. J.

    2000-01-01

    Using both previously published findings and entirely new data, we present evidence in support of the argument that the circadian dysfunction of advancing age in the healthy human is primarily one of failing to transduce the circadian signal from the circadian timing system (CTS) to rhythms "downstream" from the pacemaker rather than one of failing to generate the circadian signal itself. Two downstream rhythms are considered: subjective alertness and objective performance. For subjective alertness, we show that in both normal nychthemeral (24 h routine, sleeping at night) and unmasking (36 h of constant wakeful bed rest) conditions, advancing age, especially in men, leads to flattening of subjective alertness rhythms, even when circadian temperature rhythms are relatively robust. For objective performance, an unmasking experiment involving manual dexterity, visual search, and visual vigilance tasks was used to demonstrate that the relationship between temperature and performance is strong in the young, but not in older subjects (and especially not in older men).

  17. Circadian rhythms: basic neurobiology and clinical applications.

    PubMed

    Moore, R Y

    1997-01-01

    Circadian rhythms are major features of adaptation to our environment. In mammals, circadian rhythms are generated and regulated by a circadian timing system. This system consists of entertainment pathways, pacemakers, and pace-maker output to effector systems that are under circadian control. The primary entertainment pathway is the retinohypothalamic tract, which terminates in the circadian pacemakers, the suprachiasmatic nuclei of the hypothalamus. The output of the suprachiasmatic nuclei is principally to the hypothalamus, the midline thalamus, and the basal forebrain. This provides a temporal organization to the sleep-wake cycle, to many physiological and endocrine functions, and to psychomotor performance functions. Disorders of circadian timing primarily affect entertainment and pacemaker functions. The pineal hormone, melatonin, appears to be promising agent for therapy of some circadian timing disorders. PMID:9046960

  18. Sleep and Circadian Rhythms in Four Orbiting Astronauts

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Monk, Timothy H.; Buysse, Daniel J.; Billy, Bart D.; Kennedy, Kathy S.; Willrich, Linda M.

    1999-01-01

    INTRODUCTION The study of human sleep and circadian rhythms in space has both operational and scientific significance. Operationally, U.S. Spaceflight is moving away from brief missions with durations of less than one week. Most space shuttle missions now last two weeks or more, and future plans involving space stations, lunar bases and interplanetary missions all presume that people will be living away from the gravity and time cues of earth for months at a time. Thus, missions are moving away from situations where astronauts can "tough it out" for comparatively brief durations, to situations where sleep and circadian disruptions are likely to become chronic, and thus resistant to short term pharmacological or behavioral manipulations. As well as the operational significance, there is a strong theoretical imperative for studying the sleep and circadian rhythms of people who are removed from the gravity and time cues of earth. Like other animals, in humans, the Circadian Timekeeping System (CTS) is entrained to the correct period (24h) and temporal orientation by various time cues ("zeitgebers"), the most powerful of which is the alternation of daylight and darkness. In leaving Earth, astronauts are removing themselves from the prime zeitgeber of their circadian system -- the 24h alternation of daylight and darkness.

  19. Determining circadian response of adult male Acrobasis nuxvorella (Lepidoptera: Pyralidae) to synthetic sex attractant pheromone through time-segregated trapping with a new clockwork timing trap.

    PubMed

    Stevenson, Douglass E; Harris, Marvin K

    2009-12-01

    Mate finding is a key lifecycle event for the pecan nut casebearer, Acrobasis nuxvorella Neunzig, as it is for virtually all Lepidoptera, many of which rely on long-range, species-specific sex pheromones, regulated largely by circadian clocks. Adult male moths were trapped at discrete time intervals during the first two seasonal flights for 6 yr to determine times of peak activity associated with male response to pheromones. From 1997 to 2002, the Harris-Coble automated clockwork timing trap was used for hourly time-segregated sampling. Analysis of variance with linear contrasts determined that circadian response of A. nuxvorella males to pecan nut casebearer pheromone began at approximately 2100 hours, the first hour of total darkness, lasting for 6-7 h. It peaked from midnight to 0400 hours and ended at the onset of morning twilight, approximately 0500 hours. The hours of peak activity are hours of minimal bat predation. The study shows that pecan nut casebearer males become responsive to pheromone several hours before females start calling and remain responsive for at least 1 h after they stop. The extended response period conforms to studies of other polygamous Lepidoptera in which a selective advantage is conferred on early responding males in scramble competition for available females. PMID:20021765

  20. Temperature cycle amplitude alters the adult eclosion time and expression pattern of the circadian clock gene period in the onion fly.

    PubMed

    Miyazaki, Yosuke; Watari, Yasuhiko; Tanaka, Kazuhiro; Goto, Shin G

    2016-03-01

    Soil temperature cycles are considered to play an important role in the entrainment of circadian clocks of underground insects. However, because of the low conductivity of soil, temperature cycles are gradually dampened and the phase of the temperature cycle is delayed with increasing soil depth. The onion fly, Delia antiqua, pupates at various soil depths, and its eclosion is timed by a circadian clock. This fly is able to compensate for the depth-dependent phase delay of temperature change by advancing the eclosion time with decreasing amplitude of the temperature cycle. Therefore, pupae can eclose at the appropriate time irrespective of their location at any depth. However, the mechanism that regulates eclosion time in response to temperature amplitude is still unknown. To understand whether this mechanism involves the circadian clock or further downstream physiological processes, we examined the expression patterns of period (per), a circadian clock gene, of D. antiqua under temperature cycles that were square wave cycles of 12-h warm phase (W) and 12-h cool phase (C) with the temperature difference of 8 °C (WC 29:21 °C) and 1 °C (WC 25.5:24.5 °C). The phase of oscillation in per expression was found to commence 3.5h earlier under WC 25.5:24.5 °C as compared to WC 29:21 °C. This difference was in close agreement with the eclosion time difference between the two temperature cycles, suggesting that the mechanism that responds to the temperature amplitude involves the circadian clock. PMID:26776097

  1. In vitro circadian rhythms: imaging and electrophysiology.

    PubMed

    Beaulé, Christian; Granados-Fuentes, Daniel; Marpegan, Luciano; Herzog, Erik D

    2011-06-30

    In vitro assays have localized circadian pacemakers to individual cells, revealed genetic determinants of rhythm generation, identified molecular players in cell-cell synchronization and determined physiological events regulated by circadian clocks. Although they allow strict control of experimental conditions and reduce the number of variables compared with in vivo studies, they also lack many of the conditions in which cellular circadian oscillators normally function. The present review highlights methods to study circadian timing in cultured mammalian cells and how they have shaped the hypothesis that all cells are capable of circadian rhythmicity. PMID:21819387

  2. In vitro circadian rhythms: imaging and electrophysiology

    PubMed Central

    Beaulé, Christian; Granados-Fuentes, Daniel; Marpegan, Luciano; Herzog, Erik D.

    2013-01-01

    In vitro assays have localized circadian pacemakers to individual cells, revealed genetic determinants of rhythm generation, identified molecular players in cell-cell synchronization and determined physiological events regulated by circadian clocks. Although they allow strict control of experimental conditions and reduce the number of variables compared with in vivo studies, they also lack many of the conditions in which cellular circadian oscillators normally function. The present review highlights methods to study circadian timing in cultured mammalian cells and how they have shaped the hypothesis that all cells are capable of circadian rhythmicity. PMID:21819387

  3. Endocrine Effects of Circadian Disruption.

    PubMed

    Bedrosian, Tracy A; Fonken, Laura K; Nelson, Randy J

    2016-01-01

    Disruption of circadian rhythms, provoked by artificial lighting at night, inconsistent sleep-wake schedules, and transmeridian air travel, is increasingly prevalent in modern society. Desynchrony of biological rhythms from environmental light cycles has dramatic consequences for human health. In particular, disrupting homeostatic oscillations in endocrine tissues and the hormones that these tissues regulate can have cascading effects on physiology and behavior. Accumulating evidence suggests that chronic disruption of circadian organization of endocrine function may lead to metabolic, reproductive, sleep, and mood disorders. This review discusses circadian control of endocrine systems and the consequences of distorting rhythmicity of these systems. PMID:26208951

  4. Phase-dependent generation and transmission of time information by the KaiABC circadian clock oscillator through SasA-KaiC interaction in cyanobacteria.

    PubMed

    Valencia S, J; Bitou, Kyouhei; Ishii, Kentaro; Murakami, Reiko; Morishita, Megumi; Onai, Kiyoshi; Furukawa, Yukio; Imada, Katsumi; Namba, Keiichi; Ishiura, Masahiro

    2012-05-01

    Circadian clocks allow organisms to predict environmental changes of the day/night cycle. In the cyanobacterial circadian clock machinery, the phosphorylation level and ATPase activity of the clock protein KaiC oscillate with a period of approximately 24 h. The time information is transmitted from KaiC to the histidine kinase SasA through the SasA autophosphorylation-enhancing activity of KaiC, ultimately resulting in genome-wide transcription cycles. Here, we showed that SasA derived from the thermophilic cyanobacterium Thermosynechococcus elongatus BP-1 has the domain structure of an orthodox histidine kinase and that its C-terminal domain, which contains a phosphorylation site at His160, is responsible for the autophosphorylation activity and the temperature- and phosphorylation state-dependent trimerization / hexamerization activity of SasA. SasA and KaiC associate through their N-terminal domains with an affinity that depends on their phosphorylation states. Furthermore, the SasA autophosphorylation-enhancing activity of KaiC requires the C-terminal ATPase catalytic site and depends on its phosphorylation state. We show that the phosphotransfer activity of SasA is essential for the generation of normal circadian gene expression in cyanobacterial cells. Numerical simulations suggest that circadian time information (free phosphorylated SasA) is released mainly by unphosphorylated KaiC during the late subjective night. PMID:22512339

  5. Light and the circadian clock mediate time-specific changes in sensitivity to UV-B stress under light/dark cycles

    PubMed Central

    Takeuchi, Tomomi; Newton, Linsey; Burkhardt, Alyssa; Mason, Saundra; Farré, Eva M.

    2014-01-01

    In Arabidopsis, the circadian clock regulates UV-B-mediated changes in gene expression. Here it is shown that circadian clock components are able to inhibit UV-B-induced gene expression in a gene-by-gene-specific manner and act downstream of the initial UV-B sensing by COP1 (CONSTITUTIVE PHOTOMORPHOGENIC 1) and UVR8 (UV RESISTANCE LOCUS 8). For example, the UV-B induction of ELIP1 (EARLY LIGHT INDUCIBLE PROTEIN 1) and PRR9 (PSEUDO-RESPONSE REGULATOR 9) is directly regulated by LUX (LUX ARRYTHMO), ELF4 (EARLY FLOWERING 4), and ELF3. Moreover, time-dependent changes in plant sensitivity to UV-B damage were observed. Wild-type Arabidopsis plants, but not circadian clock mutants, were more sensitive to UV-B treatment during the night periods than during the light periods under diel cycles. Experiments performed under short cycles of 6h light and 6h darkness showed that the increased stress sensitivity of plants to UV-B in the dark only occurred during the subjective night and not during the subjective day in wild-type seedlings. In contrast, the stress sensitivity of Arabidopsis mutants with a compromised circadian clock was still influenced by the light condition during the subjective day. Taken together, the results show that the clock and light modulate plant sensitivity to UV-B stress at different times of the day. PMID:25147271

  6. Circadian metabolism in the light of evolution.

    PubMed

    Gerhart-Hines, Zachary; Lazar, Mitchell A

    2015-06-01

    Circadian rhythm, or daily oscillation, of behaviors and biological processes is a fundamental feature of mammalian physiology that has developed over hundreds of thousands of years under the continuous evolutionary pressure of energy conservation and efficiency. Evolution has fine-tuned the body's clock to anticipate and respond to numerous environmental cues in order to maintain homeostatic balance and promote survival. However, we now live in a society in which these classic circadian entrainment stimuli have been dramatically altered from the conditions under which the clock machinery was originally set. A bombardment of artificial lighting, heating, and cooling systems that maintain constant ambient temperature; sedentary lifestyle; and the availability of inexpensive, high-calorie foods has threatened even the most powerful and ancient circadian programming mechanisms. Such environmental changes have contributed to the recent staggering elevation in lifestyle-influenced pathologies, including cancer, cardiovascular disease, depression, obesity, and diabetes. This review scrutinizes the role of the body's internal clocks in the hard-wiring of circadian networks that have evolved to achieve energetic balance and adaptability, and it discusses potential therapeutic strategies to reset clock metabolic control to modern time for the benefit of human health. PMID:25927923

  7. Circadian Metabolism in the Light of Evolution

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    Circadian rhythm, or daily oscillation, of behaviors and biological processes is a fundamental feature of mammalian physiology that has developed over hundreds of thousands of years under the continuous evolutionary pressure of energy conservation and efficiency. Evolution has fine-tuned the body's clock to anticipate and respond to numerous environmental cues in order to maintain homeostatic balance and promote survival. However, we now live in a society in which these classic circadian entrainment stimuli have been dramatically altered from the conditions under which the clock machinery was originally set. A bombardment of artificial lighting, heating, and cooling systems that maintain constant ambient temperature; sedentary lifestyle; and the availability of inexpensive, high-calorie foods has threatened even the most powerful and ancient circadian programming mechanisms. Such environmental changes have contributed to the recent staggering elevation in lifestyle-influenced pathologies, including cancer, cardiovascular disease, depression, obesity, and diabetes. This review scrutinizes the role of the body's internal clocks in the hard-wiring of circadian networks that have evolved to achieve energetic balance and adaptability, and it discusses potential therapeutic strategies to reset clock metabolic control to modern time for the benefit of human health. PMID:25927923

  8. A meeting of two chronobiological systems: circadian proteins Period1 and BMAL1 modulate the human hair cycle clock.

    PubMed

    Al-Nuaimi, Yusur; Hardman, Jonathan A; Bíró, Tamás; Haslam, Iain S; Philpott, Michael P; Tóth, Balázs I; Farjo, Nilofer; Farjo, Bessam; Baier, Gerold; Watson, Rachel E B; Grimaldi, Benedetto; Kloepper, Jennifer E; Paus, Ralf

    2014-03-01

    The hair follicle (HF) is a continuously remodeled mini organ that cycles between growth (anagen), regression (catagen), and relative quiescence (telogen). As the anagen-to-catagen transformation of microdissected human scalp HFs can be observed in organ culture, it permits the study of the unknown controls of autonomous, rhythmic tissue remodeling of the HF, which intersects developmental, chronobiological, and growth-regulatory mechanisms. The hypothesis that the peripheral clock system is involved in hair cycle control, i.e., the anagen-to-catagen transformation, was tested. Here we show that in the absence of central clock influences, isolated, organ-cultured human HFs show circadian changes in the gene and protein expression of core clock genes (CLOCK, BMAL1, and Period1) and clock-controlled genes (c-Myc, NR1D1, and CDKN1A), with Period1 expression being hair cycle dependent. Knockdown of either BMAL1 or Period1 in human anagen HFs significantly prolonged anagen. This provides evidence that peripheral core clock genes modulate human HF cycling and are an integral component of the human hair cycle clock. Specifically, our study identifies BMAL1 and Period1 as potential therapeutic targets for modulating human hair growth. PMID:24005054

  9. Phenotyping Circadian Rhythms in Mice.

    PubMed

    Eckel-Mahan, Kristin; Sassone-Corsi, Paolo

    2015-01-01

    Circadian rhythms take place with a periodicity of 24 hr, temporally following the rotation of the earth around its axis. Examples of circadian rhythms are the sleep/wake cycle, feeding, and hormone secretion. Light powerfully entrains the mammalian clock and assists in keeping animals synchronized to the 24-hour cycle of the earth by activating specific neurons in the "central pacemaker" of the brain, the suprachiasmatic nucleus. Absolute periodicity of an animal can deviate slightly from 24 hr as manifest when an animal is placed into constant dark or "free-running" conditions. Simple measurements of an organism's activity in free-running conditions reveal its intrinsic circadian period. Mice are a particularly useful model for studying circadian rhythmicity due to the ease of genetic manipulation, thus identifying molecular contributors to rhythmicity. Furthermore, their small size allows for monitoring locomotion or activity in their homecage environment with relative ease. Several tasks commonly used to analyze circadian periodicity and plasticity in mice are presented here including the process of entrainment, determination of tau (period length) in free-running conditions, determination of circadian periodicity in response to light disruption (e.g., jet lag studies), and evaluation of clock plasticity in non-24-hour conditions (T-cycles). Studying the properties of circadian periods such as their phase, amplitude, and length in response to photic perturbation, can be particularly useful in understanding how humans respond to jet lag, night shifts, rotating shifts, or other transient or chronic disruption of environmental surroundings. PMID:26331760

  10. Prokineticin 2 and circadian clock output

    PubMed Central

    Zhou, Qun-Yong; Cheng, Michelle Y.

    2009-01-01

    Circadian timing from the suprachiasmatic nucleus (SCN) is a critical component of sleep regulation. Animal lesion and genetic studies have indicated an essential interaction between the circadian signals and the homeostatic processes that regulate sleep. Here we summarize the biological functions of prokineticins, a pair of newly discovered regulatory proteins, with focus on the circadian function of prokineticin 2 (PK2) and its potential role in sleep-wake regulation. PK2 has been shown as a candidate SCN output molecule that regulates circadian locomotor behavior. The PK2 molecular rhythm in the SCN is predominantly controlled by the circadian transcriptional/translational loops, but also regulated directly by light. The receptor for PK2 is expressed in the primary SCN output targets that regulate circadian behavior including sleep-wake. The depolarizing effect of PK2 on neurons that express PK2 receptor may represent a possible mechanism for the regulatory role of PK2 in circadian rhythms. PMID:16279936