The food-energy cellular connection revealed


October 15, 2009

EurekAlert!

Metabolic master switch sets the biological clock in body tissues

Our body's activity levels fall and rise to the beat of our internal drums—the 24-hour cycles that govern fundamental physiological functions, from sleeping and feeding patterns to the energy available to our cells. Whereas the master clock in the brain is set by light, the pacemakers in peripheral organs are set by food availability. The underlying molecular mechanism was unknown.

Now, researchers at the Salk Institute for Biological Studies shed light on the long missing connection: A metabolic master switch, which, when thrown, allows nutrients to directly alter the rhythm of peripheral clocks... Read More