Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

How sunlight shapes daily rhythms

Date:
November 23, 2010
Source:
University of Edinburgh
Summary:
Fresh insight into how biological clocks adjust to having less sunlight in the winter could help us better understand the impact of jet lag and shift work.

Fresh insight into how biological clocks adjust to having less sunlight in the winter could help us better understand the impact of jet lag and shift work.

Related Articles


Scientists studying the daily activity cycle in plants -- known as circadian rhythms -- have discovered a finely tuned process that enables the plant's genes to respond to the times of dawn and dusk each day, as well as the length of daylight in between.

This system helps the plant to reset its internal clock every day in response to seasonal changes in daylight, which helps the plant control the timing of key activities such as growth and flowering.

The findings shed light on how living things, including people, respond to patterns of daylight, and how our bodies respond when our daily rhythms are interrupted, for example by global travel or unsociable working hours.

Circadian rhythms -- which are found in most living things -- influence many biological functions that vary throughout the day. In people, these include sleepiness, body temperature, blood pressure, and physical strength.

Researchers at the University of Edinburgh used mathematical models to show how much the plants' rhythms accounted for dawn and dusk as well as day length.

The study, published in Molecular Systems Biology, was carried out with the Universities of Warwick and Central Lancashire and the Hungarian Academy of Sciences. It was funded by the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council and the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council.

Professor Andrew Millar of the University of Edinburgh's School of Biological Sciences, who led the study, said: "Our results give us valuable information on how plants -- and people -- respond to changing lengths of day. It could give a new way to understand how to cope when our daily rhythms of light and dark are interrupted."


Story Source:

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


Journal Reference:

  1. Kieron D Edwards, Ozgur E Akman, Kirsten Knox, Peter J Lumsden, Adrian W Thomson, Paul E Brown, Alexandra Pokhilko, Laszlo Kozma-Bognar, Ferenc Nagy, David A Rand, Andrew J Millar. Quantitative analysis of regulatory flexibility under changing environmental conditions. Molecular Systems Biology, 2010; 6 DOI: 10.1038/msb.2010.81

Cite This Page:

University of Edinburgh. "How sunlight shapes daily rhythms." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 23 November 2010. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/11/101122121707.htm>.
University of Edinburgh. (2010, November 23). How sunlight shapes daily rhythms. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 24, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/11/101122121707.htm
University of Edinburgh. "How sunlight shapes daily rhythms." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/11/101122121707.htm (accessed October 24, 2014).

Share This



More Mind & Brain News

Friday, October 24, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Academic Scandal Shocks UNC

Academic Scandal Shocks UNC

AP (Oct. 23, 2014) — A scandal involving bogus classes and inflated grades at the University of North Carolina was bigger than previously reported, a new investigation found. (Oct. 23) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Working Mother Getaway: Beaches Turks & Caicos

Working Mother Getaway: Beaches Turks & Caicos

Working Mother (Oct. 22, 2014) — Feast your eyes on this gorgeous family-friendly resort. Video provided by Working Mother
Powered by NewsLook.com
What Your Favorite Color Says About You

What Your Favorite Color Says About You

Buzz60 (Oct. 22, 2014) — We all have one color we love to wear, and believe it or not, your color preference may reveal some of your character traits. In celebration of National Color Day, Krystin Goodwin (@kyrstingoodwin) highlights what your favorite colors may say about you. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com
First-Of-Its-Kind Treatment Gives Man Ability To Walk Again

First-Of-Its-Kind Treatment Gives Man Ability To Walk Again

Newsy (Oct. 21, 2014) — A medical team has for the first time given a man the ability to walk again after transplanting cells from his brain onto his severed spinal cord. 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