PerspectivePhysiology

Crise de Foie, Redux?

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Science  11 Mar 2011:
Vol. 331, Issue 6022, pp. 1275-1276
DOI: 10.1126/science.1203194

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Summary

Disruption of circadian rhythms due to rotating shift work affects up to 20% of the workforce in industrialized countries, resulting in a nearly twofold greater risk of developing the metabolic syndrome in this population (1). The role of the circadian clock in maintaining metabolic balance is confirmed by the obesity, insulin resistance, and fatty liver observed in mice with mutations in clock components (2). Fatty liver (steatosis, or nonalcoholic fatty liver disease) is a major driver of metabolic dysregulation (3). On page 1315 of this issue, Feng et al. (4) identify a molecular mechanism that links circadian disruption and fatty liver.