Saturday, February 26, 2011
Circadian Cycle Universal and DNA Independent
The take home here is that a specific class of proteins in blood maintains a twenty four hour cycle and this has nothing to do with DNA.
In fact the old mysticism about our natural internal cycle been congruent with the ocean, the sun and the moon now has a scientific basis. We have now detected it and can now track it against all three factors.
We may even find out that the cycle is linked to the new moon.
We are also a reminded that a lot of the simplest things in nature do remain to be discovered. This could have been figured out a century ago using the same protocol.
Ancient body clock discovered that helps to keep all living things on time
13:40 February 5, 2011
A group of
scientists have successfully identified the mechanism that drives our internal
24-hour clock, or circadian rhythm. It occurs not only in human cells, but has
also been found in other life forms such as algae, and has been dated back
millions of years. Whilst the research promises a better understanding of the
problems associated with shift-work and jet-lag, this mechanism has also been
proven to be responsible for sleep patterns, seasonal shifts and even the
migration of butterflies. Cambridge
The study from the
of Metabolic Science at the discovered that red blood
cells contain this 24-hour rhythm. In the past, scientists assumed this rhythm
came from DNA and gene activity but unlike most cells, red blood cells do not
contain DNA. University of Cambridge
During this study, the
scientists incubated healthy red blood cells in the dark at body temperature
for several days, sampling them at regular intervals. It was discovered that
the levels of peroxiredoxins (proteins that are produced in blood), underwent a
24-hour cycle. Virtually all known organisms contain peroxiredoxins. Cambridge
"The implications of this for health are manifold," said Akhilesh Reddy, lead author of the study. "We already know that disrupted clocks – for example, caused by shift-work and jet-lag – are associated with metabolic disorders such as diabetes, mental health problems and even cancer. By furthering our knowledge of how the 24-hour clock in cells works, we hope that the links to these disorders – and others – will be made clearer. This will, in the longer term, lead to new therapies that we couldn't even have thought about a couple of years ago."
A second study by scientists working together at the Universities of Edinburgh and Cambridge, and the Observatoire Oceanologique in
, identified a similar
24-hour rhythm in marine algae. Once again, the scientists held a previous
belief that the circadian clock was driven by gene activity, but both the algae
and the red blood cells proved this theory wrong. Banyuls, France
"This groundbreaking research shows that body clocks are ancient mechanisms that have stayed with us through a billion years of evolution," said Andrew Millar of the
of Edinburgh's . "They must be far more important
and sophisticated than we previously realized. More work is needed to determine
how and why these clocks developed in people – and most likely all other living
things on Earth – and what role they play in controlling our bodies." School of Biological
The papers "Circadian Clocks in Human Red Blood Cells" and "Circadian Rhythms Persist Without Transcription in a Eukaryote" were published on 27th January 2011 in the journal Nature.