Creating a free account will enable you to subscribe to our daily and weekly email newsletters, as well as customize your reading experience to show only the categories most relevant to you.
Signing up only take a few minutes, so why not give it a try and see what you've been missing out on.
The internal circadian clock of a Drosophila (fruit fly) can be synchronised using vibrations, according to research published in the journal Science. The results suggest that an animal's own movements can influence its clock.
The circadian clock, which underlies the daily rhythms characterising most of our bodily functions including the sleep cycle, is mainly set by diurnal changes in light and temperature.
Researchers at UCL and Queen Mary, University of London, have now shown that exposure to 12-hour cycles of vibration and silence are also sufficient to synchronise the fly's internal clock, and corresponding daily locomotor activity.
"In a nutshell, our research shows that, in flies, the biological clock which regulates most bodily functions can be set - or entrained - not only by light and temperature, but also by mechanical stimuli that excite sensory receptors in the body," says Dr Joerg Albert (UCL Ear Institute), a senior author of the study.
"Our research encourages further research into the genetic and cellular basis of how the circadian clock is set," continues Dr Albert. "In mammals and humans there has been sporadic, but as yet inconclusive evidence to show if, and how, movement such as scheduled physical exercise can reset the clock."
Professor Ralf Stanewsky (Department of Cell and Developmental Biology, UCL; previously Queen Mary, University of London) another lead author of the study added: "Our experiments offer a novel pathway for setting the circadian clock that may well be relevant for the treatment of clock related diseases, such as insomnia, depression, bipolar disorder.
"It also offers a novel way to set the circadian clock using movement as well as extrinsic entrainment such as ambient light and temperature fluctuations. It could point to the existence of an animal's internal 'own time' that might have to be negotiated with the external 'world time'."
Article adapted by Medical News Today from original press release. Click 'references' tab above for source.
Visit our Sleep / Sleep Disorders / Insomnia category page for the latest news on this subject.
Please use one of the following formats to cite this article in your essay, paper or report:
University College London. "Vibrations influence the circadian clock of a fruit fly." Medical News Today. MediLexicon, Intl., 4 Feb. 2014. Web.
7 Mar. 2014. <http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/releases/272055>
University College London. (2014, February 4). "Vibrations influence the circadian clock of a fruit fly." Medical News Today. Retrieved from
Please note: If no author information is provided, the source is cited instead.
If you write about specific medications, operations, or procedures please do not name healthcare professionals by name.
For any corrections of factual information, or to contact our editorial team, please use our feedback form. Please send any medical news or health news press releases to:
Note: Any medical information published on this website is not intended as a substitute for informed medical advice and you should not take any action before consulting with a health care professional. For more information, please read our terms and conditions.
This page was printed from: http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/releases/272055.php
Visit www.medicalnewstoday.com for medical news and health news headlines posted throughout the day, every day.
© 2004-2014 All rights reserved. MNT (logo) is the registered trade mark of MediLexicon International Limited.