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Functional analysis of Casein Kinase 1 in a minimal circadian system

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    Rights statement: © 2013 van Ooijen et al. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

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Original languageEnglish
Article numbere70021
JournalPLoS ONE
Volume8
Issue number7
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2013

Abstract

The Earth's rotation has driven the evolution of cellular circadian clocks to facilitate anticipation of the solar cycle. Some evidence for timekeeping mechanism conserved from early unicellular life through to modern organisms was recently identified, but the components of this oscillator are currently unknown. Although very few clock components appear to be shared across higher species, Casein Kinase 1 (CK1) is known to affect timekeeping across metazoans and fungi, but has not previously been implicated in the circadian clock in the plant kingdom. We now show that modulation of CK1 function lengthens circadian rhythms in Ostreococcustauri, a unicellular marine algal species at the base of the green lineage, separated from humans by ~1.5 billion years of evolution. CK1 contributes to timekeeping in a phase-dependent manner, indicating clock-mediated gating of CK1 activity. Label-free proteomic analyses upon overexpression as well as inhibition revealed CK1-responsive phosphorylation events on a set of target proteins, including highly conserved potentially clock-relevant cellular regulator proteins. These results have major implications for our understanding of cellular timekeeping and can inform future studies in any circadian organism.

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