Prospects & Overviews
Circadian clocks in changing weather and seasons: Lessons from the picoalga Ostreococcus tauri
Article first published online: 16 JUL 2012
Copyright © 2012 WILEY Periodicals, Inc.
Volume 34, Issue 9, pages 781–790, September 2012
How to Cite
Pfeuty, B., Thommen, Q., Corellou, F., Djouani-Tahri, E. B., Bouget, F.-Y. and Lefranc, M. (2012), Circadian clocks in changing weather and seasons: Lessons from the picoalga Ostreococcus tauri. Bioessays, 34: 781–790. doi: 10.1002/bies.201200012
- Issue published online: 14 AUG 2012
- Article first published online: 16 JUL 2012
- circadian clocks;
Daylight is the primary cue used by circadian clocks to entrain to the day/night cycle so as to synchronize physiological processes with periodic environmental changes induced by Earth rotation.
However, the temporal daylight pattern is not the same every day due to erratic weather fluctuations or regular seasonal changes. Then, how do circadian clocks operate properly in varying weather and seasons? In this paper, we discuss the strategy unveiled by recent studies of the circadian clock of Ostreococcus tauri, the smallest free-living eukaryotic organism. It combines mechanisms controlling light inputs and clock sensitivity, shaping both the dynamics of the core circadian oscillator and its forcing by light so as to ensure stable and precise synchronization in all weather and seasons.
Editor's suggested further reading in BioEssays: Another place, another timer: Marine species and the rhythms of life Abstract