Studying Circadian Clock Entrainment by Hormonal Signals

Methods Mol Biol. 2022;2482:137-152. doi: 10.1007/978-1-0716-2249-0_9.


In mammals, molecular circadian clocks not only exist in the suprachiasmatic nucleus (SCN) but in almost all organ systems. Intriguingly, tissue clocks can operate in both isolated tissues and cell lines with endocrine signals mediating the circadian expression of local transcriptomes. This can be demonstrated by treating tissue explants with endocrine cues in a phase- and dose-dependent manner. In this chapter we provide an overview of methods to study the effects of candidate hormonal time cues on tissue clock resetting. We propose an experimental procedure based on an in vitro setup consisting of several consecutive steps in which organotypic tissue cultures or cells can be used. Our approach targets the potential resetting mechanism at three levels: the hormone, the direct clock gene target, and the tissue clock response.

Keywords: Hormones; In vitro; Peripheral circadian clocks; Phase resetting; Screening.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Circadian Clocks* / physiology
  • Circadian Rhythm / physiology
  • Hormones / metabolism
  • Mammals / physiology
  • Suprachiasmatic Nucleus / physiology


  • Hormones