bims-ciryme Biomed News
on Circadian rhythms and metabolism
Issue of 2021‒07‒11
two papers selected by
Gabriela Da Silva Xavier
University of Birmingham

  1. FEBS J. 2021 Jul 06.
      The adaptation of organisms to a rhythmic environment is mediated by an internal timing system termed the circadian clock. In mammals, molecular clocks are found in all tissues and organs. This circadian clock network regulates the release of many hormones, which in turn influence some of the most vital behavioural functions. Sleep-wake cycles are under strict circadian control with strong influence of rhythmic hormones such as melatonin, cortisol and others. Food intake, in contrast, receives circadian modulation through hormones such as leptin, ghrelin, insulin and orexin. A third behavioural output covered in this review is mating and bonding behaviours, regulated through circadian rhythms in steroid hormones and oxytocin. Together, these data emphasize the pervasive influence of the circadian clock system on behavioural outputs and its mediation through endocrine networks.
    Keywords:  behaviour; circadian rhythms; food intake; hormones; mating; sleep
  2. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2021 Jul 13. pii: e2019756118. [Epub ahead of print]118(28):
      Circadian clocks regulate ∼24-h oscillations in gene expression, behavior, and physiology. While the genetic and molecular mechanisms of circadian rhythms are well characterized, what remains poorly understood are the intracellular dynamics of circadian clock components and how they affect circadian rhythms. Here, we elucidate how spatiotemporal organization and dynamics of core clock proteins and genes affect circadian rhythms in Drosophila clock neurons. Using high-resolution imaging and DNA-fluorescence in situ hybridization techniques, we demonstrate that Drosophila clock proteins (PERIOD and CLOCK) are organized into a few discrete foci at the nuclear envelope during the circadian repression phase and play an important role in the subnuclear localization of core clock genes to control circadian rhythms. Specifically, we show that core clock genes, period and timeless, are positioned close to the nuclear periphery by the PERIOD protein specifically during the repression phase, suggesting that subnuclear localization of core clock genes might play a key role in their rhythmic gene expression. Finally, we show that loss of Lamin B receptor, a nuclear envelope protein, leads to disruption of PER foci and per gene peripheral localization and results in circadian rhythm defects. These results demonstrate that clock proteins play a hitherto unexpected role in the subnuclear reorganization of core clock genes to control circadian rhythms, revealing how clocks function at the subcellular level. Our results further suggest that clock protein foci might regulate dynamic clustering and spatial reorganization of clock-regulated genes over the repression phase to control circadian rhythms in behavior and physiology.
    Keywords:  circadian rhythms; live imaging; nuclear organization