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Int J Mol Sci. 2013 Jan 31;14(2):3026-49. doi: 10.3390/ijms14023026.

Nature's Timepiece-Molecular Coordination of Metabolism and Its Impact on Aging.

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  • 1Institute of Entomology, Biology Centre, Academy of Science, Branišovská 31, České Budějovice 370 05-CZ, Czech Republic. nk260@msstate.edu.

Abstract

Circadian rhythms are found in almost all organisms from cyanobacteria to humans, where most behavioral and physiological processes occur over a period of approximately 24 h in tandem with the day/night cycles. In general, these rhythmic processes are under regulation of circadian clocks. The role of circadian clocks in regulating metabolism and consequently cellular and metabolic homeostasis is an intensively investigated area of research. However, the links between circadian clocks and aging are correlative and only recently being investigated. A physiological decline in most processes is associated with advancing age, and occurs at the onset of maturity and in some instances is the result of accumulation of cellular damage beyond a critical level. A fully functional circadian clock would be vital to timing events in general metabolism, thus contributing to metabolic health and to ensure an increased "health-span" during the process of aging. Here, we present recent evidence of links between clocks, cellular metabolism, aging and oxidative stress (one of the causative factors of aging). In the light of these data, we arrive at conceptual generalizations of this relationship across the spectrum of model organisms from fruit flies to mammals.

PMID:
23434656
[PubMed]
PMCID:
PMC3588029
Free PMC Article

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