Human Chronotypes from a Theoretical Perspective

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Abstract

The endogenous circadian timing system has evolved to synchronize an organism to periodically recurring environmental conditions. Those external time cues are called Zeitgebers. When entrained by a Zeitgeber, the intrinsic oscillator adopts a fixed phase relation Formula: see text to the Zeitgeber. Here, we systematically study how the phase of entrainment depends on clock and Zeitgeber properties. We combine numerical simulations of amplitude-phase models with predictions from analytically tractable models. In this way we derive relations between the phase of entrainment Formula: see text to the mismatch between the endogenous and Zeitgeber period, the Zeitgeber strength, and the range of entrainment. A core result is the "180 rule" asserting that the phase Formula: see text varies over a range of about 180 within the entrainment range. The 180 rule implies that clocks with a narrow entrainment range ("strong oscillators") exhibit quite flexible entrainment phases. We argue that this high sensitivity of the entrainment phase contributes to the wide range of human chronotypes.

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APA

Granada, A. E., Bordyugov, G., Kramer, A., & Herzel, H. (2013). Human Chronotypes from a Theoretical Perspective. PLoS ONE, 8(3). https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0059464

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