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Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 2008 Sep 19;374(2):299-303. doi: 10.1016/j.bbrc.2008.07.011. Epub 2008 Jul 15.

Circadian regulation of response to oxidative stress in Drosophila melanogaster.

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Department of Zoology, Oregon State University, 3029 Cordley Hall, Corvallis, OR 97331, USA.


Circadian rhythms are fundamental biological phenomena generated by molecular genetic mechanisms known as circadian clocks. There is increasing evidence that circadian synchronization of physiological and cellular processes contribute to the wellness of organisms, curbing pathologies such as cancer and premature aging. Therefore, there is a need to understand how circadian clocks orchestrate interactions between the organism's internal processes and the environment. Here, we explore the nexus between the clock and oxidative stress susceptibility in Drosophila melanogaster. We exposed flies to acute oxidative stress induced by hydrogen peroxide (H(2)O(2)), and determined that mortality rates were dependent on time at which exposure occurred during the day/night cycle. The daily susceptibility rhythm was abolished in flies with a null mutation in the core clock gene period (per) abrogating clock function. Furthermore, lack of per increased susceptibility to H(2)O(2) compared to wild-type flies, coinciding with enhanced generation of mitochondrial H(2)O(2) and decreased catalase activity due to oxidative damage. Taken together, our data suggest that the circadian clock gene period is essential for maintaining a robust anti-oxidative defense.

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