Navigation Links
Protein shown to rally biological clock

A biologist at Washington University in St. Louis and his collaborators have identified the factor in mammalian brain cells that keeps cells in synchrony so that functions like the wake-sleep cycle, hormone secretion and loco motor behaviors are coordinated daily over a 24-hour period.

Erik Herzog, Ph.D., Washington University associate professor of Biology in Arts & Sciences, Sara Aton, Ph.D., a graduate student in Herzog’s lab who is now a postdoctoral researcher at the University of Pennsylvania, James Huettner, Ph.D., associate professor in cell biology and physiology at the Washington

University School of Medicine, and Martin Straume, a biostatistician, have determined that VIP ¬?vasoactive intestinal polypeptide ?is the rallying protein that signals the brain’s biological clock to coordinate daily rhythms in behavior and physiology.

The finding clarifies the roles that both VIP and a neurotransmitter GABA play in synchronizing biological clocks, and sheds light on how mammals, in this case mice and rats. regulate circadian rhythm. Results were published in the Nov. 27- Dec. 1 online issue of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

Neurons in the biological clock, an area called the suprachiasmatic nucleus (SCN), located at the base of the brain right across the optic nerve, keep 24-hour time and are normally highly synchronized. The SCN is composed of 10,000 neurons on one side of the hypothalamus, and 10,000 on the other. Together these neurons are intrinsic clocks in communication with each other to keep 24-hour time.

It had been thought that GABA was the prime candidate for the rallying role. All SCN neurons make this inhibitory neurotransmitter, and it had been shown that giving GABA daily at 8 a.m. to SCN cells synchronizes them.

“The surprise was that GABA was not needed,?said Herzog. “VIP synchronizes even when we block all GABA signaling. When we blocked GABA, synchrony was perfectly fine. Instead, the oscillations got bigger.?

Herzog likens VIP to the Pony Express rider telling all the SCN cells to synchronize their ; GABA, he says, is like the marshal that prevents he cells from being too active.

Herzog and Aton recorded neuron activity from the SCN using a multielectrode array with 60 electrodes upon which they place SCN cells, a “clock in a dish.? They also recorded gene expression in real-time using a bioluminescent reporter of gene activity.

Using drugs or genetic knock out mice, they negated the role of GABA and recorded the electrical activity of many neurons, what Herzog calls the “hands of the clock,?and the gene activities, “the cogs of the clock,?of many SCN cells.

They found that, without GABA, the cells marched together, but without VIP, they lost synchrony, indicating that VIP is the coordinator.
'"/>

Source:Washington University in St. Louis


Related biology news :

1. Quantum Dots Research Leads to New Knowledge about Protein Binding in Plants
2. Protein discovery could unlock the secret to better TB treatment
3. Researchers Uncover Key Step In Manufacture of Memory Protein
4. An HIV Protein Plays a Surprising Role in Gene Activation
5. Protein Packages Found To Activate Genes; May Be What Regulates Development And Disease
6. New SARS Protein Linked To Important Cell Doorway
7. The Shapes Of Life: NIGMS Project Yields More Than 1,000 Protein Structures
8. PANTHER Protein Classification System Database 5.0
9. Duke Chemists Isolating Individual Molecules Of Toxic Protein In Alzheimers, Parkinsons Disease
10. Newly Discovered Compound Blocks Known Cancer-Causing Protein
11. UF Researchers Map Bacterial Proteins That Cause Tooth Loss

Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:


(Date:1/10/2019)... ... 2019 , ... When Dr. James L. Sherley, M.D., Ph.D., founder and director ... chapter to the new book Perinatal Stem Cells: Research and Therapy, he knew immediately ... debilitating secret of stem cell medicine. For more than a half-century, stem cell ...
(Date:1/8/2019)... and RALEIGH, N.C. (PRWEB) , ... January 07, ... ... micro acoustic and micro mechanical technologies and solutions for hearing instruments and specialty ... today announced BiometRIC, the first ever hearing aid receiver in canal with an ...
(Date:1/4/2019)... Texas (PRWEB) , ... January 02, 2019 , ... ... This release is particularly noteworthy, as the life science tools and service supplier ... it is offering a catalog. The catalog features not just part numbers like ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:1/24/2019)... ... January 23, 2019 , ... Through ... awarded microbiome research support in study design, planning, sample collection, and analysis to ... St. Augustine Campus in Trinidad led by Dr. Elaine Monica Davis, MBBS, MPhil, ...
(Date:1/20/2019)... ... January 17, 2019 , ... Consumers are ... exclusive purview of physicians. That's changing as many services now exist for patients ... laboratory testing market totaled $208 million in 2018, according to Kalorama Information’s new ...
(Date:1/20/2019)... ... January 17, 2019 , ... TrakCel, the leading cell ... Quick Life Science Group (Quick Healthcare and QuickSTAT) today announce a partnership to ... cell and gene therapy industry to track products and manage the logistical processes ...
(Date:1/11/2019)... FEASTERVILLE, Pa. (PRWEB) , ... January 11, 2019 ... ... Collection Mixer (PN#: 302000) for the automated collection of donor blood. This ... blood collection experts. The unit incorporates the functionality needed for the busiest ...
Breaking Biology Technology: