PerspectiveMetabolism

A pancreatic clock times insulin release

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Science  06 Nov 2015:
Vol. 350, Issue 6261, pp. 628-629
DOI: 10.1126/science.aad5412

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Summary

The circadian timing system plays an essential role in the temporal coordination of metabolism in health and disease (1). This includes maintaining blood glucose homeostasis, a process that is regulated to a large extent by insulin. Cell-autonomous circadian oscillators—molecular “clocks”—operate in virtually all body cells. On page 650 of this issue, Perelis et al. report that the circadian clock specific to islet beta cells in the pancreas controls the release of insulin as a response to blood glucose levels in a manner that is dependent on the time of day (2).