Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Tick tock: Marine animals with at least two internal clocks

Date:
September 26, 2013
Source:
Cell Press
Summary:
Animals living in marine environments keep to their schedules with the aid of multiple independent -- and, in at least some cases, interacting -- internal clocks. The findings, suggest that multiple clocks -- not just the familiar, 24-hour circadian clock -- might even be standard operating equipment in animals.

This is a premature adult Platynereis worm.
Credit: Zhang et al., Current Biology

Animals living in marine environments keep to their schedules with the aid of multiple independent -- and, in at least some cases, interacting -- internal clocks. The findings, presented by two research groups in papers appearing in the Cell Press journals Current Biology and Cell Reports on September 26, suggest that multiple clocks -- not just the familiar, 24-hour circadian clock -- might even be standard operating equipment in animals.

"The discovery of the circadian clock mechanisms in various terrestrial species from fungi to humans was a major breakthrough for biology," says Charalambos Kyriacou of the University of Leicester, who led one of the two studies on an inter-tidal crustacean known as a speckled sea louse. "The identification of the tidal clock as a largely separate mechanism now presents us with an exciting new perspective on how coastal organisms define biological time."

In the second study, Kristin Tessmar-Raible from the Max F. Perutz Laboratories at the University of Vienna and colleagues describe interactions between the familiar 24-hour circadian clock and a circalunar clock in a marine bristle worm.

"Our results suggest that the bristle worm possesses independent, endogenous monthly and daily body clocks that interact," Tessmar-Raible says. "Taking this together with previous and other recent reports, evidence accumulates that such a multiple-clock situation might be the rule rather than the exception in the animal kingdom."

Kyriacou and colleagues used a combination of environmental and molecular manipulations of the daily clock to show that when the 24-hour circadian clock is disrupted in the sea louse, the 12.4-hour tidal clock keeps right on ticking.

"The surprise was to discover just how hard-wired, robust, and independent the tidal clock is in these animals; it keeps working no matter what we throw at its circadian clock," Kyriacou says.

Similarly, Tessmar-Raible's team showed that bristle worms' moon-driven clocks, which provide the animals with an "intrinsic month," continued to function even when the researchers disrupted the animals' circadian clocks. The two clock mechanisms do interact, however, as the researchers showed that the length and strength of the circadian rhythm are adjusted according to the circalunar clock.

"This means that there might be a whole level of regulation on the molecular and behavioral level for which we have just scratched the surface," Tessmar-Raible says.

These simultaneous discoveries in two marine species now raise new questions about the molecular and cellular natures of these separate clocks and their roles in animal behavior, the researchers say.


Story Source:

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


Journal References:

  1. Zhang et al. Dissociation of circadian and circatidal time-keeping in the marine crustacean Eurydice pulchra.. Current Biology, September 2013
  2. Zantke et al. Circadian and circalunar clock interactions in a marine annelid.. Cell Reports, September 2013

Cite This Page:

Cell Press. "Tick tock: Marine animals with at least two internal clocks." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 26 September 2013. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/09/130926123323.htm>.
Cell Press. (2013, September 26). Tick tock: Marine animals with at least two internal clocks. ScienceDaily. Retrieved August 1, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/09/130926123323.htm
Cell Press. "Tick tock: Marine animals with at least two internal clocks." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/09/130926123323.htm (accessed August 1, 2014).

Share This




More Plants & Animals News

Friday, August 1, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Visitors Feel Part of the Pack at Wolf Preserve

Visitors Feel Part of the Pack at Wolf Preserve

AP (July 31, 2014) Seacrest Wolf Preserve on the northern Florida panhandle allows more than 10,000 visitors each year to get up close and personal with Arctic and British Columbian Wolves. (July 31) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Florida Panther Rebound Upsets Ranchers

Florida Panther Rebound Upsets Ranchers

AP (July 31, 2014) With Florida's panther population rebounding, some ranchers complain the protected predators are once again killing their calves. (July 31) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Dangerous Bacteria Kills One in Florida

Dangerous Bacteria Kills One in Florida

AP (July 31, 2014) Sarasota County, Florida health officials have issued a warning against eating raw oysters and exposing open wounds to coastal and inland waters after a dangerous bacteria killed one person and made another sick. (July 31) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Raw: Thousands Flocking to German Crop Circle

Raw: Thousands Flocking to German Crop Circle

AP (July 30, 2014) Thousands of people are trekking to a Bavarian farmer's field to check out a mysterious set of crop circles. (July 30) Video provided by AP
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