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Sleep Med Clin. 2015 Dec;10(4):403-12. doi: 10.1016/j.jsmc.2015.08.003. Epub 2015 Sep 11.

Neurobiology of Circadian Rhythm Regulation.

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Department of Psychology, School of Biology and Ecology, Graduate School of Biomedical Science and Engineering, University of Maine, 5742 Little Hall, Orono, ME 04467, USA. Electronic address:
Department of Neurobiology, Center for Sleep and Circadian Biology, Northwestern University, 2205 Tech Drive, Hogan Hall 2-160, Evanston, IL 60208, USA.


Over the past few decades, multilevel research has elucidated the basic neuroanatomy, neurochemistry, and molecular neurobiology of the master circadian pacemaker located in the hypothalamic suprachiasmatic nucleus (SCN). The circadian timing system is composed of a large number of cellular oscillators located in the SCN, in non-SCN brain structures, and throughout the body. Cellular-level oscillations are generated by a molecular feedback loop in which circadian clock genes rhythmically regulate their own transcription, as well as that of hundreds of clock-controlled genes. The maintenance of proper coordination within this network of cellular- and tissue-level clocks is essential for health and well-being.


Circadian; Clock genes; Entrainment; Pacemaker; Suprachiasmatic nucleus

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