Mutations in a specific protein (called casein kinase 1) alters the core clock protein (called PERIOD or PER), and this changes the timing of the biological clock. A study by scientists from Duke-NUS Medical School (Duke-NUS) and the University of Tokyo provide new evidence which supports the presence of a key mechanism that regulates our biological clock. In the study published in PNAS, the team used preclinical models to validate that mutations in PER2 protein can alter the balance of the circadian period, which can lead to sleep disorders. This helps us understand and validate the genetic and biochemical regulation of our circadian sleep/wake cycles, which can produce a morning lark or night owl effect. Understanding how the clock works can help in the development of new therapeutic interventions for treating people with sleep disorders.
Read full study here: https://www.pnas.org/content/early/2020/04/29/2000266117 (internet required)