Category «Circadian Rhythm»

Genetics of Seasonal Affective Disorder

The Winter Blues… described as a low feeling, generally apathetic, blah, usually accompanied by changes in sleep.  It is fairly common in northern latitudes, affecting almost 10% of some populations. Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) is characterized by a recurrent depression with a change in the season usually in fall/winter for most. Scientists think this is …

Weight Loss: Optimizing your diet based on your genes

Diet gurus, talking heads on TV, government food pyramids, and your friend who lost 20 pounds… What do they all have in common?  They all know the perfect diet that will whip you into shape and make you feel good. If that diet doesn’t work for you?  Well, you must have been cheating. You didn’t …

Circadian Rhythms: Genes at the Core of Our Internal Clocks

Circadian rhythms are the natural biological rhythms that shape our biology.  Most people know about the master clock in our brain that keeps us on a wake-sleep cycle over 24 hours.  This is driven by our master “clock’ genes. It turns out that we also have circadian cycles (peripheral clocks) in most organs such as …

PPARG: A genetic variant that can protect against obesity and type-2 diabetes, but only if you eat the right diet.

The PPARG (peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor gamma) gene has been associated with obesity, metabolic syndrome, and risk for type-2 diabetes. This gene is involved in the regulation of fatty acid storage and in glucose metabolism. PPAR-gamma is activated by omega-6 polyunsaturated fatty acids and regulates adipocyte differentiation. More specifically, PPARG is a nuclear transcription factor that involved …