Minireview: NAD+, a circadian metabolite with an epigenetic twist

Endocrinology. 2012 Jan;153(1):1-5. doi: 10.1210/en.2011-1535. Epub 2011 Dec 20.


A wide variety of endocrine, physiological, and metabolic functions follow daily oscillations. Most of these regulations are controlled at the level of gene expression by the circadian clock and, a remarkably coordinated transcription-translation machinery that exerts its function in virtually all mammalian cells. A large fraction of the genome is under control of the circadian clock, a regulation that is achieved through dynamic changes in chromatin states. Recent findings have demonstrated intimate connections between the circadian clock and epigenetic control. The case of nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide, which modulates the circadian activity of the deacetylase sirtuin 1, constitutes a paradigmatic example of the link between cyclic cellular metabolism and chromatin remodeling. Indeed, the clock transcriptional feedback loop is interlocked with the enzymatic loop of the nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide salvage pathway.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Chromatin Assembly and Disassembly
  • Circadian Clocks / genetics*
  • Circadian Clocks / physiology*
  • Epigenesis, Genetic*
  • Feedback, Physiological
  • Humans
  • Models, Biological
  • NAD / metabolism*


  • NAD