Daytime anesthesia gives bees jet lag

Honeybees, as stand-ins for surgery patients, show drug’s aftereffects as biorhythms get out sync

7:16pm, April 17, 2012

A widely used anesthetic gives honeybees jet lag, but only if they’re knocked out during the day.

Honeybees, as stand-ins for surgery patients, confirm that a bout of the general anesthetic isoflurane acts directly on the biological clock that governs body rhythms, reports chronobiologist Guy Warman of the University of Auckland in New Zealand. Nighttime anesthesia hits the internal clock at a different phase when the drug effects don’t break the rhythm, he and his colleagues report online April 16 in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

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