How is the inner circadian clock controlled by interactive clock proteins?: Structural analysis of clock proteins elucidates their physiological role

  • Merbitz-Zahradnik T
  • Wolf E
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Abstract Most internationally travelled researchers will have encountered jetlag. If not, working odd hours makes most of us feel somehow dysfunctional. How can all this be linked to circadian rhythms and circadian clocks? In this review, we define circadian clocks, their composition and underlying molecular mechanisms. We describe and discuss recent crystal structures of Drosophila and mammalian core clock components and the enormous impact they had on the understanding of circadian clock mechanisms. Finally, we highlight the importance of circadian clocks for the daily regulation of human/mammalian physiology and show connections to overall fitness, health and disease.

Author-supplied keywords

  • 3D crystal structure
  • Circadian clock mechanism
  • Circadian rhythm
  • Drosophila and mammalian clock protein

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  • Torsten Merbitz-Zahradnik

  • Eva Wolf

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