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Open Access Commentary

Circadian clock genes, ovarian development and diapause

William E Bradshaw and Christina M Holzapfel

Author Affiliations

Center for Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, University of Oregon, Eugene, OR 97403-5289, USA

BMC Biology 2010, 8:115  doi:10.1186/1741-7007-8-115

Published: 3 September 2010

Abstract

Insects, like most organisms, have an internal circadian clock that oscillates with a daily rhythmicity, and a timing mechanism that mediates seasonal events, including diapause. In research published in BMC Biology, Ikeno et al. show that downregulation of the circadian clock genes period and cycle affects expression of ovarian diapause in the insect Riptortus pedestris. They interpret these important results as support for Erwin B√ľnning's (1936) hypothesis that the circadian clock constitutes the basis of photoperiodism. However, their observations could also be the result of pleiotropic effects of the individual clock genes.

See research article http://www.biomedcentral.com/1741-7007/8/116 webcite