Andrew Beale

Research Fellow

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Beale A, Pedrazzoli M, Gonçalves B, Beijamini F, Duarte N, Egan K, Knutson K, von Schantz M, Roden L (2017) Comparison between an African town and a neighbouring village shows delayed, but not decreased, sleep during the early stages of urbanisation, Scientific Reports 7 5697 NATURE PUBLISHING GROUP
The well-established negative health outcomes of sleep deprivation, and the suggestion that
availability of electricity may enable later bed times without compensating sleep extension in the
morning, have stimulated interest in studying communities whose sleep pattern may resemble a preindustrial
state. Here, we describe sleep and activity in two neighbouring communities, one urban
(Milange) and one rural (Tengua), in a region of Mozambique where urbanisation is an ongoing process.
The two communities differ in the amount and timing of daily activity and of light exposure, with later
bedtimes (H1 h) associated with more evening and less daytime light exposure seen in the town of
Milange. In contrast to previous reports comparing communities with and without electricity, sleep
duration did not differ between Milange (7.28 h) and Tengua (7.23 h). Notably, calculated sleep quality
was significantly poorer in rural Tengua than in Milange, and poor sleep quality was associated with
a number of attributes more characteristic of rural areas, including more intense physical labour and
less comfortable sleeping arrangements. Thus, whilst our data support the hypothesis that access to
electricity delays sleep timing, the higher sleep quality in the urban population also suggests that some
aspects of industrialisation are beneficial to sleep.
Beale Andrew D., Kruchek Emily, Kitcatt Stephen J., Henslee Erin A., Parry Jack S.W., Braun Gabriella, Jabr Rita, von Schantz Malcolm, O?Neill John S., Labeed Fatima H. (2019) Casein kinase 1 underlies temperature compensation of circadian rhythms in human red blood cells, Journal of Biological Rhythms SAGE Publications
Temperature compensation and period determination by casein kinase 1 (CK1) are conserved features of eukaryotic circadian rhythms, whereas the clock gene transcription factors that facilitate daily gene expression rhythms differ between phylogenetic kingdoms. Human red blood cells (RBCs) exhibit temperature compensated circadian rhythms which, since RBCs lack nuclei, must occur in the absence of a circadian transcription-translation feedback loop. We tested whether period determination and temperature compensation are dependent on casein kinases in RBCs. As with nucleated cell types, broad spectrum kinase inhibition with staurosporine lengthened the period of the RBC clock at 37°C, with more specific inhibition of CK1 and CK2 also eliciting robust changes in circadian period. Strikingly, inhibition of CK1 abolished temperature compensation and increased the Q10 for the period of oscillation in RBCs, similar to observations in nucleated cells. This indicates that CK1 activity is essential for circadian rhythms irrespective of the presence or absence of clock gene expression cycles.

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