Circadian organization in lizards: the role of the pineal organ

See allHide authors and affiliations

Science  11 Feb 1977:
Vol. 195, Issue 4278, pp. 587-589
DOI: 10.1126/science.835015


After pinealectomy, the iguanid lizard Sceloporus olivaceus exhibits a "splitting" of the circadian activity rhythm into two components, marked changes in the period of the rhythm, or arrhythmicity. These effects are consistent with either of two hypotheses: (i) The pineal organ is a coupling device between circadian oscillators in a multioscillator system, or (ii) the pineal organ is itself a master oscillator, which entrains other circadian oscillators and imposes its frequency upon them.

Stay Connected to Science

Editor's Blog