Clock News

Chemotherapy Most Effective At Time Of Day When Particular Enzyme At Lowest Level:

For years, research has hinted that the time of day that cancer patients receive chemotherapy can impact their chances of survival. But the lack of a clear scientific explanation for this finding has kept clinicians from considering timing as a factor in treatment. Now, a new study from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill has suggested that treatment is most effective at certain times of day because that is when a particular enzyme system - one that can reverse the actions of chemotherapeutic drugs - is at its lowest levels in the body.

When It Comes To Sleep Research, Fruit Flies And People Make Unlikely Bedfellows:

You may never hear fruit flies snore, but rest assured that when you're asleep they are too. According to research published in the January 2009 issue of the journal Genetics scientists from the University of Missouri-Kansas City have shown that the circadian rhythms (sleep/wake cycles) of fruit flies and vertebrates are regulated by some of the same "cellular machinery" as that of humans. This study is significant because the sleep-regulating enzyme analyzed in this research is one of only a few possible drug targets for circadian problems that can lead to seasonal affective disorder (SAD), insomnia, and possibly some cancers.

Getting Less Sleep Associated With Lower Resistance To Colds:

Individuals who get less than seven hours of sleep per night appear about three times as likely to develop respiratory illness following exposure to a cold virus as those who sleep eight hours or more, according to a report in the January 12 issue of Archives of Internal Medicine, one of the JAMA/Archives journals.

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This EurekAlert title got my attention this morning: Immunity stronger at night than during day: The immune system's battle against invading bacteria reaches its peak activity at night and is lowest during the day. Experiments with the laboratory model organism, Drosophila melanogaster, reveal that…
Memory Experts Show Sleeping Rats May Have Visual Dreams: Matthew A. Wilson, professor of brain and cognitive sciences at MIT's Picower Institute for Learning and Memory, and postdoctoral associate Daoyun Ji looked at what happens in rats' brains when they dream about the mazes they ran while they…
Circadian Clock: Scientists Model 3D Structures Of Proteins That Control Human Clock: Researchers at the Scripps Research Institute say they have taken a leap forward in their quest to understand the proteins that control the human circadian clock -- the 24-hour wake-sleep cycle that, when…
Les Lang at the UNC Medical Center News Office now writes a blog - Hard Science. One recent post immediately caught my eye - Clocking Cancer: You might say that Dr. Aziz Sancar is trying to clock cancer. In a nifty double play involving a pair of recent publications in the Proceedings of the…

Vertebrates and humans share similarities at the cellular level? Wonders never cease! ;-)

Editorial snark aside, cheers to the applicability of model organisms!

I don't think fruit flies are vertebrates.

Bora do you know how they model SAD in a fly?