Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

New regulator of circadian clock identified: Dopamine study may have impact on activity and sleep rhythms in Parkinson's disease

Date:
October 20, 2010
Source:
Concordia University
Summary:
Daily sleeping and eating patterns are critical to human well-being and health. Now, a new study has demonstrated how the brain chemical dopamine regulates these cycles by altering the activity of the "clock-protein" PER2. The findings may have implications for individuals with Parkinson's Disease with disrupted 24-hour rhythms of activity and sleep.

Daily sleeping and eating patterns are critical to human well-being and health. Now, a new study from Concordia University has demonstrated how the brain chemical dopamine regulates these cycles by altering the activity of the "clock-protein" PER2.

Published in the Journal of Neuroscience, these findings may have implications for individuals with Parkinson's Disease with disrupted 24-hour rhythms of activity and sleep.

"PER2 is a protein well-known for its role in the regulation of daily or circadian rhythms, this is why it is referred to as a clock protein," says senior author, Shimon Amir, a psychology professor at the Concordia Center for Studies in Behavioral Neurobiology. "Many molecules, such as stress hormones are known to have an impact on the activity of PER2. Until now, the role of dopamine in regulating circadian rhythms has been unclear. Our findings show that not only is PER2 influenced by dopamine but also that dopamine is necessary for its rhythmic expression in specific brain regions."

Dopamine and Parkinson's

Parkinson's disease is caused by the degeneration of specific nerve cells, which results in a decrease in dopamine levels in the brain. Dopamine is critical for normal movements and balance and its decreased level results in instability and involuntary movements, the telltale symptoms of Parkinson's.

The findings from this Concordia study may explain the disruptions of daily behavioral and physiological rhythms that are also frequently reported in Parkinson's.

Rise in dopamine followed by rise in PER2

Amir and his colleagues studied the role of dopamine in rats. Their first steps were to show that PER2 is present in a specific brain area that normally receive dopamine, namely the dorsal striatum, and that it fluctuates daily in this area.

In this same region of the brain the research group demonstrated that a rise of dopamine preceded the rise in PER2 and that removing dopamine from the brain or blocking one of its receptors resulted in decreased PER2, which, in turn, could be reversed by the administration of a drug that mimics the action of dopamine on this receptor.

"Our findings are consistent with the idea that the rhythm of expression of PER2 depends on the daily activation by dopamine," says first author Suzanne Hood, a doctoral student at Concordia.

This study was funded by the Canadian Institutes of Health Research and the Fonds de la Recherche en Sant้ du Qu้bec.


Story Source:

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


Journal Reference:

  1. Suzanne Hood, Pamela Cassidy, Marie-Pierre Cossette, Yuval Weigl, Michael Verwey, Barry Robinson, Jane Stewart, and Shimon Amir. Endogenous Dopamine Regulates the Rhythm of Expression of the Clock Protein PER2 in the Rat Dorsal Striatum via Daily Activation of D2 Dopamine Receptors. Journal of Neuroscience, 2010; DOI: 10.1523/JNEUROSCI.2128-10.2010

Cite This Page:

Concordia University. "New regulator of circadian clock identified: Dopamine study may have impact on activity and sleep rhythms in Parkinson's disease." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 20 October 2010. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/10/101020111219.htm>.
Concordia University. (2010, October 20). New regulator of circadian clock identified: Dopamine study may have impact on activity and sleep rhythms in Parkinson's disease. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 22, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/10/101020111219.htm
Concordia University. "New regulator of circadian clock identified: Dopamine study may have impact on activity and sleep rhythms in Parkinson's disease." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/10/101020111219.htm (accessed July 22, 2014).

Share This




More Mind & Brain News

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Do Obese Women Have 'Food Learning Impairment'?

Do Obese Women Have 'Food Learning Impairment'?

Newsy (July 18, 2014) — Yale researchers tested 135 men and women, and it was only obese women who were deemed to have "impaired associative learning." Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Does Mixing Alcohol and Energy Drinks Boost Urge To Drink?

Does Mixing Alcohol and Energy Drinks Boost Urge To Drink?

Newsy (July 18, 2014) — A new study suggests that mixing alcohol with energy drinks makes you want to keep the party going. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Pot Cooking Class Teaches Responsible Eating

Pot Cooking Class Teaches Responsible Eating

AP (July 18, 2014) — Following the nationwide trend of eased restrictions on marijuana use, pot edibles are growing in popularity. One Boston-area cooking class is teaching people how to eat pot responsibly. (July 18) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Understanding D.C.'s New Pot Laws

Understanding D.C.'s New Pot Laws

Newsy (July 17, 2014) — Washington D.C.'s new laws decriminalizing small amount of marijuana went into effect Thursday. Here's how they work. 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:
from the past week

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