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J Biol Rhythms. 2003 Jun;18(3):183-94.

The art of entrainment.

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  • 1Institute for Medical Psychology, University of Munich, Germany.


The circadian system actively synchronizes the temporal sequence of biological functions with the environment. The oscillatory behavior of the system ensures that entrainment is not passive or driven and therefore allows for great plasticity and adaptive potential. With the tools at hand, we now can concentrate on the most important circadian question: How is the complex task of entrainment achieved by anatomical, cellular, and molecular components? Understanding entrainment is equal to understanding the circadian system. The results of this basic research will help us to understand temporal ecology and will allow us to improve conditions for humans in industrialized societies.

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