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Researching fundamental rhythms of life
Date:8/26/2014

cal 'oscillators' operating on two vastly different time scales," Diekman says.

Preliminary results obtained by Diekman and his research colleagues suggest that the circadian rhythms they are studying comprise a truly intrinsic process rooted in "hard-wired" neuronal electrical programming. More specifically, as suggested by Diekman's modeling, the neurons in the SCN will begin to enter a state where they are less active in the afternoon. In this state, the neurons' electrical activity has an especially pronounced effect on gene expression, influencing hormone production and other physiological indicators without external light/dark exposure. It is a rhythm deeply encoded in our DNA.

As a component of the BRAIN Initiative, Diekman's work has broader implications as well. He anticipates that deeper understanding of the flow of information involved at the cellular level will aid in the development of mathematical models of brain processes such as long-term memory formation. The project also could impact areas of mathematical biology beyond circadian rhythms by advancing development of computer-simulation methods capable of handling widely disparate time scales.


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Contact: Tanya Klein
973-596-3433
New Jersey Institute of Technology
Source:Eurekalert

Page: 1 2 3

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