Virginia Tech® home

Archived Public Lecture: Genes Regulating Sleep and Circadian Rhythms

Maury Strauss Distinguished Public Lecture presented by the Fralin Biomedical Research Institute at VTC

Archived Lecture: Genes Regulating Sleep and Circadian Rhythms

Date: Mar. 25, 2021
Time: 5:30 p.m. - 6:30 p.m. 

About This Lecture

Young and his team have identified genes that control the circadian rhythms of Drosophila. Interactions among these genes and their proteins set up a network of oscillations within single cells. These oscillations are autonomously generated, are found in most tissues, and establish rhythms in physiology and behavior. This mechanism is conserved within the animal kingdom: similar "clock" genes regulate patterns of sleep and other rhythms in humans. A common form of human insomnia called Delayed Sleep Phase Disorder (DSPD) is characterized by a persistent and intractable delay in the timing of the major sleep episode. A study of several DSPD subjects allowed us to recognize a specific clock gene variant that affects behavioral, physiological and molecular circadian rhythms of carriers under controlled laboratory conditions. Young's results are consistent with the candidate allele encoding a dominant, hyperactive transcription factor that alters sleep and circadian rhythms by lengthening the period of the circadian clock.

Additional Details 

This is a free event hosted by Dr. Michael Friedlander and the Fralin Biomedical Research Institute. For more information, please call 540-526-2059 or send an e-mail


You May Also Be Interested In...

Michael Young, Ph.D. to present at Fralin Biomedical Research Institute

Michael Young, Ph.D.

Nobel Laureate in Physiology or Medicine (2017)

The Richard and Jeanne Fisher Professor; Vice President for Academic Affairs, The Rockefeller University