2,2,2-Tribromoethanol phase-shifts the circadian rhythm of the liver clock in Per2::Luciferase knockin mice: lack of dependence on anesthetic activity

J Pharmacol Exp Ther. 2012 Mar;340(3):698-705. doi: 10.1124/jpet.111.188615. Epub 2011 Dec 13.


Comprehensive gene expression profiling in mice in response to the inhalation of sevoflurane has revealed that circadian clock gene expression is affected strongly in the liver, heart, lung, and kidney, in this order, but moderately in the spleen and slightly in the brain. Therefore, we examined whether the administration of general anesthetics at different times of the day induces phase shifts of the liver clock in Per2::Luciferase knockin mice. One to 4 days of intraperitoneal injection of 2,2,2-tribromoethanol (240 mg/kg, anesthetic time 60 min) or 2,2,2-trichloroethanol (240 mg/kg, 60 min), common anesthetics in veterinary surgery, caused phase delays when injected during the daytime and phase advances when injected during the nighttime. Inhalation administration of isoflurane for 30 or 60 min during the daytime did not induce a phase delay. Injection of propofol (300 mg/kg, 17 min) during the daytime induced an insignificant phase delay of the Per2 bioluminescence rhythm. Injection of 2,2,2-tribromoethanol did not induce a phase shift in the suprachiasmatic nucleus, the main oscillator, or in behavioral locomotor rhythms, suggesting that 2,2,2-tribromoethanol induced phase shifts of the liver clock independent of the main suprachiasmatic clock. The expression of clock genes, such as Bmal1 and Clock, in mouse liver was decreased strongly 1 and 4 h after a single injection of 2,2,2-tribromoethanol. These results demonstrate that 2,2,2-tribromoethanol or 2,2,2-trichloroethanol produce phase shifts of the peripheral clock, independent of anesthetic activity. These anesthetics may cause circadian rhythm disorders in peripheral organs when administered as general anesthetics several times during the day.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Anesthetics / pharmacology*
  • Animals
  • Circadian Rhythm / drug effects*
  • Dose-Response Relationship, Drug
  • Ethanol / analogs & derivatives*
  • Ethanol / pharmacology
  • Liver / drug effects*
  • Liver / metabolism
  • Luciferases / physiology*
  • Luminescent Measurements
  • Male
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred ICR
  • Mice, Knockout
  • Motor Activity / drug effects
  • Period Circadian Proteins / genetics
  • Period Circadian Proteins / physiology*


  • Anesthetics
  • Per2 protein, mouse
  • Period Circadian Proteins
  • tribromoethanol
  • Ethanol
  • Luciferases