An overview of the circadian rhythms and the biological clock concept in medical doctrine

Circadian Rhythm How It Programs Your Sleep The Circadian Rhythm is a hour biological wake — sleep cycle that governs most animals and humans in a synchronized series of natural functions and responses. You are set to respond to the circadian rhythm based on an inner biological clock. For example, when it gets dark at night most animals respond with heightened melatonina hormone secreted by the pineal gland in the brain. This increase in melatonin sets your natural sleep in motion and you start to get sleepy.

An overview of the circadian rhythms and the biological clock concept in medical doctrine

Research Topics

These rhythms include blood pressure, body temperature, hormone levels, the number of immune cells in blood, and the sleep-wake cycle. In this paper, we will focus on common genes between species that are responsible for determining the circadian behavior, especially some transcription factors i.

The intent of this summary is to introduce the common molecular mechanism of biological clocks between flies and humans and then to describe the research from three laboratories that was presented in the session.

Scientists from the University of Massachusetts Medical School and the University of Washington learned this by exposing hamsters—another organism used in sleep research—to conditions that advanced or delayed the biological clock. A. Parameters of circadian rhythm. A representative circadian rhythm is depicted in which the level of a particular measure (e.g., blood hormone levels and activity levels) varies according to time. The difference in the level between peak and trough values is the amplitude of the rhythm. Human circadian rhythms are regulated by an internal biological clock in the brain All animals and plants have a built-in circadian rhythm, which is adjusted or entrained to the environment by external cues, known as Zeitgebers (a German word meaning “time-givers”), the most important of which is daylight.

Circadian rhythms are a ubiquitous adaptation of all organisms to the most predictable of environmental challenges. Until very recently, the molecules underlying the oscillation have remained unknown. Perturbations of such oscillations by inhibitors of RNA or protein synthesis suggest that such molecules are involved 2.

An approach that has been successful in unraveling mechanisms is the use of genetic alterations. The first and second clock mutants discovered in the fruit fly, Drosophila melanogaster, are period and timeless genes 3 — 5.

Maki Kaneko et al.

Circadian Rhythms - How Sleep Works

In the adult head, protein studies showed that per is rhythmically expressed in specific sites, the lateral neurons located between the central brain and the optic lobes. The expression patterns in several such cells is cyclical. Among these neurons, five laterally located cells express.

Another interesting finding is a cluster of neurons with the cyclical expression of per and tim in antiphase to the lateral neurons. The results imply the presence of multiple oscillators involved in rhythms of different physiological or behavioral processes in a single organism.

Such a molecular anatomical approach should bring a new insight into the functional mapping of this brain system.

Overview of Circadian Rhythms

Furthermore, the comparison between mammalian and fly clock cells [i. The circadian control of transcription provides an entry point to analyze the cis-acting regulatory elements and trans-acting factors through which the clock may regulate many clock-controlled gene expressions 6.

Furthermore, the clock-controlled responsive element 6 or time-box may regulate the endogenous circadian physiological phenomena under constant conditions.

Most recently, a possible candidate for the time-box has been identified in the promoter region of the Drosophila period gene 9.

They identified a circadian transcriptional enhancer within a bp DNA fragment containing an E-box upstream of per gene, which is responsible for the night-time activation of per gene expression. The E-box is a known binding site for the basic helix-loop-helix class of transcription factors.

Recently, the strongest candidate yet for a trans-acting factor in the oscillator is Clock, cloned by using a forward-genetic strategy The Clock mutant exhibited long period becoming arrhythmic after several days in constant darkness. Takahashi and colleagues 10 successfully cloned the responsible gene and identified the mutation in the protein coding region of the Clock gene.

Interestingly enough, the Clock protein contains a protein—protein binding domain PASwhich is located in the Drosophila per gene and a basic helix-loop-helix motif for DNA-binding. Moreover, Takahashi and colleagues 10 were able to completely rescue the long period and arrhythmic phenotype of clock mutant mice by transfer of the normal clock gene.

An overview of the circadian rhythms and the biological clock concept in medical doctrine

Ravi Allada et al. Allada and his colleagues 11 screened chemically mutagenized flies looking for mutants that alter or abolish circadian rhythmicity of locomoter activity and found a new arrhythmic mutant, initially called Jrk.

Jrk flies express low levels of period and timeless proteins because of reduced levels of transcription. The gene was identified and exhibits striking sequence conservation with the mammalian circadian rhythm gene, Clock; hence, Allada et al.

Genomes and Genes

Like mouse clock, Drosophila clock contains basic helix-loop-helix and PAS domains as well as a transcriptional activation domain. Thus, a negative feedback model has been proposed Fig.All species have a timing mechanism, or 'clock,' that controls periods of activity and inactivity.

These clocks are known as circadian rhythms and refer the cycle of physiological and biological processes that fluctuate on a roughly hour timetable.

Schematic representation of the regulation of genes believed to be involved in the circadian clock. BMAL1, Clock, CK1ε, mPer, and mCry all are circadian clock genes identified in mice.

title = "Overview of circadian rhythms", abstract = "The daily light-dark cycle governs rhythmic changes in the behavior and/or physiology of most species. Studies have found that these changes are governed by a biological clock, which in mammals is located in two brain areas called the suprachiasmatic nuclei.

Circadian Rhythms and Biological Clocks Part A and Part B is an exceptional resource for anybody interested in the general area of circadian rhythms. As key elements of timekeeping are conserved in organisms across the phylogenetic tree, and our understanding of circadian biology has benefited tremendously from work done in .

Apr 14,  · Introducing the epigenetic clock hypothesis reports “Animals and plants have biological clocks that help to regulate circadian cycles, seasonal rhythms, growth, development, and sexual maturity. It is reasonable to suspect that the timing of senescence is also influenced by one or more biological clocks.

Summary: The regular recurrence, in cycles of about 24 hours, of biological processes or activities, such as sensitivity to drugs and stimuli, hormone secretion, sleeping, feeding, etc. This rhythm seems to be set by a 'biological clock' which seems to be set by recurring daylight and darkness.

Overview of circadian rhythms — Northwestern Scholars