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6 March 2014 1:04 pm ,
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Magdalena Koziol, a former postdoc at Yale University, was the victim of scientific sabotage. Now, she is suing the...
Antiretroviral drugs can protect people from becoming infected by HIV. But so-called pre-exposure prophylaxis, or PrEP...
Two studies show that eating a diet low in protein and high in carbohydrates is linked to a longer, healthier life, and...
Considered an icon of conservation science, researchers at World Wildlife Fund (WWF) headquarters in Washington, D.C.,...
The new atlas, which shows the distribution of important trace metals and other substances, is the first product of...
Early in April, the first of a fleet of environmental monitoring satellites will lift off from Europe's spaceport in...
Since 2000, U.S. government health research agencies have spent almost $1 billion on an effort to churn out thousands...
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ScienceShot: The Bladder's Biological Clock
1 May 2012 12:46 pm
You'll have to pee at least once during an 8-hour workday. So how can most of us sleep through the night without visiting the porcelain throne? New research fingers the circadian clock, a molecular timer responsible for keeping us on daily sleep-wake cycles. Scientists compared urination patterns, both volume and frequency, in normal mice and in mice genetically engineered without two circadian genes, Cryptochrome-1 and Cryptochrome-2, resulting in dysfunctional circadian rhythms. They found that a circadian gene called Rev-erbα controlled the production of Cx43, a protein that determines how much urine bladders hold. Normal mice urinated more frequently when awake, compared with when they slept, while genetically altered mice urinated without regard to daily cycles, scientists report online today in Nature Communications. (Normal and engineered mice produced the same volume of urine.) The researchers also found that increases in Rev-erbα caused increases in Cx43 concentrations when normal mice were awake. Since more Cx43 means less room in the bladder, the team speculates that although normal mice didn't stop producing urine when asleep, their bladders were able to hold more due to decreased Cx43 concentrations. This allowed the mice to urinate less frequently. The authors note that scientists investigating why children wet the bed or why older people get up to urinate during the night should consider circadian clock effects.
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