Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Dartmouth Researchers Identify Multi-Tasking Circadian Protein

Date:
August 7, 2002
Source:
Dartmouth College
Summary:
Dartmouth Medical School geneticists have found a molecular shortcut from light reception to gene activation in their work to understand biological clocks. Their research has revealed that the protein called White Collar-1 does double duty: it perceives light and then, in response to light, directly turns on a key gene called frequency, which is a central component of the clock.

HANOVER, N.H. -- Dartmouth Medical School geneticists have found a molecular shortcut from light reception to gene activation in their work to understand biological clocks. Their research has revealed that the protein called White Collar-1 does double duty: it perceives light and then, in response to light, directly turns on a key gene called frequency, which is a central component of the clock.

Related Articles


Biological clocks are molecularly driven and are set, or synchronized, by the daily cycles of light and dark. Using the fungus Neurospora, the Dartmouth team is studying how organisms keep track of time using this internal clock.

"What we have discovered is that a protein called White Collar-1 is both the photoreceptor and the mechanism that turns on the frequency gene, all in one molecule," explains Allan Froehlich, the lead author. "It's the combination of the two activities that is so interesting."

The findings, by Professors Jay Dunlap and Jennifer Loros, graduate student Allan Froehlich, and post-doctoral fellow Yi Liu, now on the faculty at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, was published in the Aug. 2 issue of Science; the study was reported online in the July 4, 2002, issue of Sciencexpress. The Dunlap and Loros laboratories have made numerous contributions to understanding the genetic foundation for biological clocks.

Researchers, working with a variety of organisms, have already begun to understand how photoreceptor proteins perceive light at the molecular level and then pass on this information through a complex series of proteins. However, this finding with the White Collar-1 protein reveals a relatively simple process between a light-perceiving protein and turning on a gene.

"Virtually nothing is known about how pathogenic fungi respond to light or whether our discovery can be exploited for a noninvasive medical therapy," Dunlap says. "But, if you want to do therapy--antifungal, antibacterial or anything--you start looking for biochemical activities that the host does not have that can be targeted to the pathogen."

Froehlich, working with Dunlap and Loros, built on their discovery that the gene frequency encodes a central cog of the biological clock and that light resets the clock through frequency. He then determined that the clock proteins White Collar-1 and White Collar-2 bind to the specific parts of frequency that turn on frequency in response to light. And finally, he showed that under appropriate biochemical conditions WC-1 was the actual photoreceptor protein.

"The next step is to continue to understand how the proteins work," says Froehlich. "There are many more unidentified proteins that may be influencing biological clocks, which provides us with lots more to discover."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Dartmouth College. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Dartmouth College. "Dartmouth Researchers Identify Multi-Tasking Circadian Protein." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 7 August 2002. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2002/08/020807063031.htm>.
Dartmouth College. (2002, August 7). Dartmouth Researchers Identify Multi-Tasking Circadian Protein. ScienceDaily. Retrieved March 31, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2002/08/020807063031.htm
Dartmouth College. "Dartmouth Researchers Identify Multi-Tasking Circadian Protein." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2002/08/020807063031.htm (accessed March 31, 2015).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Health & Medicine News

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Soda, Salt and Sugar: The Next Generation of Taxes

Soda, Salt and Sugar: The Next Generation of Taxes

Washington Post (Mar. 30, 2015) — Denisa Livingston, a health advocate for the Dinι Community Advocacy Alliance, and the Post&apos;s Abby Phillip discuss efforts around the country to make unhealthy food choices hurt your wallet as much as your waistline. Video provided by Washington Post
Powered by NewsLook.com
UnitedHealth Buys Catamaran

UnitedHealth Buys Catamaran

Reuters - Business Video Online (Mar. 30, 2015) — The $12.8 billion merger will combine the U.S.&apos; third and fourth largest pharmacy benefit managers. Analysts say smaller PBMs could also merge. Fred Katayama reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
S. Leone in New Anti-Ebola Lockdown

S. Leone in New Anti-Ebola Lockdown

AFP (Mar. 28, 2015) — Sierra Leone imposed a three-day nationwide lockdown Friday for the second time in six months in a bid to prevent a resurgence of the deadly Ebola virus. Duration: 01:17 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
These Popular Antibiotics Can Cause Permanent Nerve Damage

These Popular Antibiotics Can Cause Permanent Nerve Damage

Newsy (Mar. 27, 2015) — A popular class of antibiotic can leave patients in severe pain and even result in permanent nerve damage. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories

 

Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins