The involvement of Cry1 and Cry2 genes in the regulation of the circadian body temperature rhythm in mice

Kei Nagashima*, Kenta Matsue, Masahiro Konishi, Chisato Iidaka, Koyomi Miyazaki, Norio Ishida, Kazuyuki Kanosue

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

32 Citations (Scopus)


The criptochrome genes (Cry1 and Cry2) are involved in the molecular mechanism that controls the circadian clock, and mice lacking these genes (Cry1-/-/Cry2-/-) are behaviorally arrhythmic. It has been speculated that the circadian clock modulates the characteristics of thermoregulation, resulting in body temperature (Tb) rhythm. However, there is no direct evidence proving this speculation. We show here that T b and heat production in Cry1-/-/Cry2-/- mice are arrhythmic under constant darkness. In contrast, both rhythms occur under a light-dark cycle and/or periodical food restriction linked with spontaneous activity and/or eating, although they are not robust as those in wild-type mice. The relationship between heat production and Tb in Cry1 -/-/Cry2-/- mice is linear and identical under any conditions, indicating that their Tb rhythm is determined by heat production rhythm associated with activity and eating. However, Tb in wild-type mice is maintained at a relatively higher level in the active phase than the inactive phase regardless of the heat production level. These results indicate that the thermoregulatory responses are modulated according to the circadian phase, and the Cry genes are involved in this mechanism.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)R329-R335
JournalAmerican Journal of Physiology - Regulatory Integrative and Comparative Physiology
Issue number1 57-1
Publication statusPublished - 2005 Jan


  • Circadian clock
  • Metabolism
  • Thermoregulation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Medicine


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