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Gene that makes people 'early to bed and early to rise' demystified

ls are lower at all time points and, in the latter half of a cycle, fall below the threshold earlier than normal, leading to activation of transcription earlier and resulting in a shorter period."

The advance in understanding of PER2's role may ultimately lead to methods for people, such as nurses who must care for patients in the middle of the night, to synchronize their internal clocks with their regular or changing daily routines, the researchers said.

Someday "people with jet lag or shift work--some of the most common of sleep disorders--might take a pill and be back to normal again," Fu said.

"When we fly to Europe, we set our watch ahead several time zones and our watch is back on track," Ptácek added. "We don't understand the [internal] human clock well enough to advance or delay it that way. But with all that we've learned from the fruit fly, mouse and now human about the gears and how they are working, we're getting closer to a 'button' that might be able to do that."


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Source:Cell Press


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