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A circadian clock transplant gives E. coli rhythm

The time tinker could be used to treat jet lag, produce drugs

By
2:11pm, June 12, 2015
Circadian rhythm graphs

DAILY RHYTHM  By transplanting a molecular clock into E. coli bacteria, researchers can control the timing of the production of a protein that glows green, as seen in this diagram.

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A ticking clock in the belly warned Captain Hook of a crocodile’s approach. A different kind of internal clock in gut bacteria may one day prove just as helpful.

Researchers have transplanted a simple circadian clock from cyanobacteria — also known as blue-green algae — into E. coli. The feat, researchers report June 12 in Science Advances, is a first step toward creating organisms that may stave off jet lag or even make drugs on a schedule.

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