Presenter Information

Asia MillerFollow
Anita Nasseri

Major

Neuroscience

Anticipated Graduation Year

2021

Access Type

Open Access

Abstract

The endogenous circadian clock of biological organisms is what allows them to synchronize their behavioral and physiological circadian rhythms to their environment. This circadian rhythm regulates the timing of behaviors like sleeping, eating, locomotion, etc. The circadian circuit operates by input pathways, a central clock in the brain, and output pathways. This circuitry depends on the oscillation of core clock genes, present in both the brain and in peripheral tissues. Although much is known about the central clock on the molecular level, not much is known about the molecular mechanisms of peripheral clocks, and how they interact with the central clock to produce rhythmic behaviors. In our experiments, we investigated the role of the fat body clock’s contribution to feeding rhythms in Drosophila melanogaster. Here, we demonstrate that genetically speeding up, slowing down, or completely eliminating the central clock alters feeding behavior. Conversely, genetic manipulation of the fat body clock did not alter feeding behavior. These findings indicate that the central clock in the brain functions as the master regulator of feeding rhythms.

Key words: circadian, central clock, fat body clock, peripheral clock, feeding rhythms

Faculty Mentors & Instructors

Daniel Cavanaugh, PhD, Biology Department

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 License.

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GENETIC DISSECTION OF THE CONTRIBUTION OF CENTRAL AND PERIPHERAL CIRCADIAN CLOCKS TO DROSOPHILA FEEDING RHYTHMS

The endogenous circadian clock of biological organisms is what allows them to synchronize their behavioral and physiological circadian rhythms to their environment. This circadian rhythm regulates the timing of behaviors like sleeping, eating, locomotion, etc. The circadian circuit operates by input pathways, a central clock in the brain, and output pathways. This circuitry depends on the oscillation of core clock genes, present in both the brain and in peripheral tissues. Although much is known about the central clock on the molecular level, not much is known about the molecular mechanisms of peripheral clocks, and how they interact with the central clock to produce rhythmic behaviors. In our experiments, we investigated the role of the fat body clock’s contribution to feeding rhythms in Drosophila melanogaster. Here, we demonstrate that genetically speeding up, slowing down, or completely eliminating the central clock alters feeding behavior. Conversely, genetic manipulation of the fat body clock did not alter feeding behavior. These findings indicate that the central clock in the brain functions as the master regulator of feeding rhythms.

Key words: circadian, central clock, fat body clock, peripheral clock, feeding rhythms