Author(s): Challet E, Pvet P, VivienRoels B, Malan A
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Abstract This study was performed to investigate possible effects of a timed caloric restriction on the light-dark (LD) synchronization of four biological rhythms pair-studied in the same animals. In Experiment 1, food-restricted rats kept under a photoperiod of 12 h light:12 h dark received 50\% of previous ad libitum food 2 h after the onset of light. Their daily rhythm of pineal melatonin and rhythms of plasma melatonin and corticosterone were examined and compared to those of ad libitum control rats after 1 or 2 months of food restriction. A significant phase advance (about 2 h) was found for the pineal melatonin rhythm and for the daily onset of plasma melatonin. Timing of nocturnal peak of circulating corticosterone was unchanged, and a diurnal peak anticipated food presentation by about 2 h. In Experiment 2, effects of a timed caloric restriction under 12L:12D were studied on the expression of daily rhythms of body temperature and locomotor activity. To discriminate between the effects of timed meal feeding and those of the added caloric restriction, these rhythms were analyzed in food-restricted rats, as in Experiment 1, and were compared to those in sham-restricted rats, concomitantly fed twice more than food-restricted rats (i.e., a timed meal feeding without caloric restriction). Acrophase of the nocturnal peak of body temperature rhythm reached the greatest phase advance (7 h) in food-restricted rats, in which it was close to LD transition. The nocturnal component of locomotor activity rhythm also was markedly phase advanced (6 h) by caloric restriction, as indicated by wheel-running and general activity occurring form early afternoon to midnight. A smaller 4-h phase advance of the nocturnal peak of body temperature also was observed in sham-restricted rats, although the onset of locomotor activity rhythm apparently was unaffected by meal feeding and the end of activity rhythm was phase advanced by 2 h. These results indicate that timed caloric restriction is a potent phase-shifting agent that interacts with the LD cycle zeitgeber. This nonphotic stimulus phase advances melatonin, corticosterone, body temperature, and activity rhythms to different extents and thus suggests a change in the internal synchronization of the circadian system.
This article was published in J Biol Rhythms
and referenced in Journal of Sleep Disorders & Therapy