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PloS one

Interactions between the circadian clock and TGF-β signaling pathway in zebrafish.


PMID 29940038

Abstract

TGF-β signaling is a cellular pathway that functions in most cells and has been shown to play a role in multiple processes, such as the immune response, cell differentiation and proliferation. Recent evidence suggests a possible interaction between TGF-β signaling and the molecular circadian oscillator. The current study aims to characterize this interaction in the zebrafish at the molecular and behavioral levels, taking advantage of the early development of a functional circadian clock and the availability of light-entrainable clock-containing cell lines. Smad3a, a TGF-β signaling-related gene, exhibited a circadian expression pattern throughout the brain of zebrafish larvae. Both pharmacological inhibition and indirect activation of TGF-β signaling in zebrafish Pac-2 cells caused a concentration dependent disruption of rhythmic promoter activity of the core clock gene Per1b. Inhibition of TGF-β signaling in intact zebrafish larvae caused a phase delay in the rhythmic expression of Per1b mRNA. TGF-β inhibition also reversibly disrupted, phase delayed and increased the period of circadian rhythms of locomotor activity in zebrafish larvae. The current research provides evidence for an interaction between the TGF-β signaling pathway and the circadian clock system at the molecular and behavioral levels, and points to the importance of TGF-β signaling for normal circadian clock function. Future examination of this interaction should contribute to a better understanding of its underlying mechanisms and its influence on a variety of cellular processes including the cell cycle, with possible implications for cancer development and progression.

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