Circadian molecular clockworks in non-model insects

Kenji Tomioka, Akira Matsumoto

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

59 Citations (Scopus)


The recent development of molecular genetic technology is promoting studies on the clock mechanism of various non-model insect species, revealing diversity and commonality of their molecular clock machinery. Like in Drosophila, their clocks generally consist of clock genes including period, timeless, Clock, and cycle, except for hymenopteran species which lack timeless in their genome. Unlike in Drosophila, however, some insects show vertebrate-like traits: The clock machinery involves mammalian type cryptochrome, cycle is rhythmically expressed, and Clock is constitutively expressed. Although the oscillatory mechanisms of the clock are still to be investigated in most insects, RNAi and genome editing technology should accelerate the study, leading toward understanding the origin of variable overt behavioral rhythms such as nocturnal, diurnal, and crepuscular activity rhythms.

Original languageEnglish
Article number76
Pages (from-to)58-64
Number of pages7
JournalCurrent Opinion in Insect Science
Publication statusPublished - Feb 1 2015

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
  • Insect Science


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