Editors' ChoiceCircadian Rhythms

Linking the Clock and the Cell Cycle

Science's STKE  08 Aug 2006:
Vol. 2006, Issue 347, pp. tw271
DOI: 10.1126/stke.3472006tw271

The circadian clock is linked to the cell cycle in ways that are not clear. Pregueiro et al. investigated the relation between these two fundamental cellular processes in the fungus Neurospora. When a gene called period-4 (prd-4) contains a mutation, Neurospora's clock runs with a shorter period. The protein PRD-4 is orthologous to checkpoint kinase 2, a mammalian cell cycle regulator, and PRD-4 is both regulated by and regulates the circadian clock. DNA-damaging agents can reset the clock in a time-of-day-dependent manner, and this circadian-phase resetting is wholly dependent on PRD-4.

A. M. Pregueiro, Q. Liu, C. L. Baker, J. C. Dunlap, J. J. Loros, The Neurospora checkpoint kinase 2: A regulatory link between the circadian and cell cycles. Science 313, 644-649 (2006). [Abstract] [Full Text]