Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Day in and day out

27.07.2009
Fluctuations in the levels of various molecules in the blood provide a reliable indicator of the body’s internal clock

Without consciously checking your watch, your body knows the time by maintaining its own internal clock that tracks the day–night cycle through so-called circadian rhythms. Accordingly, disruption of these cycles, whether due to transient effects of jet-lag or disorders such as familial advanced sleep-phase syndrome, can profoundly affect an individual’s ability to maintain a normal pattern of sleeping and waking.

Circadian rhythms also affect a number of other physiological activities, including manifestations of disease and the body’s response to therapeutics. “Interestingly, some cancer growth is under circadian clock control,” says Yoichi Minami of the RIKEN Center for Developmental Biology in Kobe. “This suggests that if we take drugs with precise timing, we can reduce unwanted effects.”

Inspired by the work of 18th Century botanist Karl Linné, who assembled a literal circadian clock composed of flower species that open and close their petals at specific times of day, Minami and colleagues Takeya Kasukawa, Yuji Kakazu, Tomoyoshi Soga and Hiroki Ueda recently set about constructing an analogous ‘body clock’ for mammals.

To achieve this, they applied sophisticated analytical chemistry techniques to characterize time-of-day-specific fluctuations in the levels of a broad variety of small molecules circulating in the mouse bloodstream1. They performed their analysis with mice that were maintained either in fixed light–dark cycles, or in constant darkness, to distinguish variability resulting from external environmental time cues versus purely internal circadian timetables.

Depending on the analytical method applied, the researchers were able to detect between 150 and 300 compounds that appeared to show circadian regulation under both conditions. Once the oscillations of these various metabolites had been characterized, they were able to apply these patterns to determine the body-time at which a blood sample was collected. Importantly, the accuracy of these measurements was not affected by differences in age, sex or food consumption, and the team was even able to directly observe relative shifts in the circadian clock resulting from simulated jet-lag.

These findings now clear the way for constructing an equivalent internal timetable for people. “One of our main goals is translation of circadian clock research from lab to clinic,” says Kasukawa. “If we can show the validity of our method in human beings … our method will contribute to the diagnosis of disease caused by circadian clock dysfunction [and] speed up development of circadian clock-conditioning drugs.”

Reference

1. Minami, Y., Kasukawa, T., Kakazu, Y., Iigo, M., Sugimoto, M., Ikeda, S., Yasui, A., van der Horst, G.T.J., Soga, T. & Ueda, H.R. Measurement of internal body time by blood metabolomics. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences USA 106, 9890–9895 (2009).

The corresponding author for this highlight is based at the RIKEN Laboratory for Systems Biology

Saeko Okada | Research asia research news
Further information:
http://www.rikenresearch.riken.jp/research/752/
http://www.researchsea.com

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht Designer cells: artificial enzyme can activate a gene switch
22.05.2018 | Universität Basel

nachricht Flow of cerebrospinal fluid regulates neural stem cell division
22.05.2018 | Helmholtz Zentrum München - Deutsches Forschungszentrum für Gesundheit und Umwelt

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: LZH showcases laser material processing of tomorrow at the LASYS 2018

At the LASYS 2018, from June 5th to 7th, the Laser Zentrum Hannover e.V. (LZH) will be showcasing processes for the laser material processing of tomorrow in hall 4 at stand 4E75. With blown bomb shells the LZH will present first results of a research project on civil security.

At this year's LASYS, the LZH will exhibit light-based processes such as cutting, welding, ablation and structuring as well as additive manufacturing for...

Im Focus: Self-illuminating pixels for a new display generation

There are videos on the internet that can make one marvel at technology. For example, a smartphone is casually bent around the arm or a thin-film display is rolled in all directions and with almost every diameter. From the user's point of view, this looks fantastic. From a professional point of view, however, the question arises: Is that already possible?

At Display Week 2018, scientists from the Fraunhofer Institute for Applied Polymer Research IAP will be demonstrating today’s technological possibilities and...

Im Focus: Explanation for puzzling quantum oscillations has been found

So-called quantum many-body scars allow quantum systems to stay out of equilibrium much longer, explaining experiment | Study published in Nature Physics

Recently, researchers from Harvard and MIT succeeded in trapping a record 53 atoms and individually controlling their quantum state, realizing what is called a...

Im Focus: Dozens of binaries from Milky Way's globular clusters could be detectable by LISA

Next-generation gravitational wave detector in space will complement LIGO on Earth

The historic first detection of gravitational waves from colliding black holes far outside our galaxy opened a new window to understanding the universe. A...

Im Focus: Entangled atoms shine in unison

A team led by Austrian experimental physicist Rainer Blatt has succeeded in characterizing the quantum entanglement of two spatially separated atoms by observing their light emission. This fundamental demonstration could lead to the development of highly sensitive optical gradiometers for the precise measurement of the gravitational field or the earth's magnetic field.

The age of quantum technology has long been heralded. Decades of research into the quantum world have led to the development of methods that make it possible...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

Save the date: Forum European Neuroscience – 07-11 July 2018 in Berlin, Germany

02.05.2018 | Event News

Invitation to the upcoming "Current Topics in Bioinformatics: Big Data in Genomics and Medicine"

13.04.2018 | Event News

Unique scope of UV LED technologies and applications presented in Berlin: ICULTA-2018

12.04.2018 | Event News

 
Latest News

Designer cells: artificial enzyme can activate a gene switch

22.05.2018 | Life Sciences

PR of MCC: Carbon removal from atmosphere unavoidable for 1.5 degree target

22.05.2018 | Earth Sciences

Achema 2018: New camera system monitors distillation and helps save energy

22.05.2018 | Trade Fair News

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>