Alignment of mother, baby body clocks could prevent chronic diseases

The body has an internal clock called circadian rhythm that regulates sleepiness over a 24-hour period.

By
May 14, 2018 18:36
1 minute read.
A MOTHER hugs her baby soon after giving birth.

A MOTHER hugs her baby soon after giving birth.. (photo credit: REUTERS)

 
X

Dear Reader,
As you can imagine, more people are reading The Jerusalem Post than ever before. Nevertheless, traditional business models are no longer sustainable and high-quality publications, like ours, are being forced to look for new ways to keep going. Unlike many other news organizations, we have not put up a paywall. We want to keep our journalism open and accessible and be able to keep providing you with news and analyses from the frontlines of Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish World.

As one of our loyal readers, we ask you to be our partner.

For $5 a month you will receive access to the following:

  • A user experience almost completely free of ads
  • Access to our Premium Section
  • Content from the award-winning Jerusalem Report and our monthly magazine to learn Hebrew - Ivrit
  • A brand new ePaper featuring the daily newspaper as it appears in print in Israel

Help us grow and continue telling Israel’s story to the world.

Thank you,

Ronit Hasin-Hochman, CEO, Jerusalem Post Group
Yaakov Katz, Editor-in-Chief

UPGRADE YOUR JPOST EXPERIENCE FOR 5$ PER MONTH Show me later

When the body clock of a baby “ticks” in step with that of the mother, better maternal care may result and significantly reduce the likelihood of heart disease and other illness in the offspring, according to research on lab rats conducted by Czech scientists.

The mother-offspring interaction is very important for health later in adulthood, Lucie Olejníkova, Lenka Polidarova, Michal Behuliak, Martin Sladek and Alena Sumova of the Czech Academy of Sciences wrote in The Journal of Physiology.

Be the first to know - Join our Facebook page.


They wrote that theirs was the first study to provide compelling evidence that by significantly reducing abnormalities in the circadian rhythm of a mother, the risk of chronic disease developing in offspring is minimized. It thus may be possible to develop therapies for serious lifestyle-related diseases, such as heart disease and obesity, they suggested.

The body has an internal clock called circadian rhythm that regulates sleepiness over a 24-hour period; the circadian system is important so that processes in our body are synchronized with when it is light or dark outside. Disturbances in these mechanisms can lead to poor health, such as heart disease.

The study, conducted at the academy’s physiology institute, was performed in two strains of laboratory rats in which the maternal care and synchrony of their circadian clocks with external day/night cycle differed. The effect of maternal care provided by the genetic mother of these pups was compared with maternal care of a foster mother. The pups either had an aberrant circadian system and were genetically determined to develop disease in adulthood or they were healthy controls.

The researchers tested the effect of maternal care on the body clock before and just after weaning and on their activity rhythms, heart rate and blood pressure in adulthood. Proper maternal care provided to pups genetically predisposed to develop disease led to improvement of their clock function and abolished the rise in their heart rate in adulthood.

Sumova noted that as the results “point to a real possibility” of minimizing abnormalities in the offspring’s body clock and therefore in progression of disease, “our future research will be directed at understanding in more detail how an aberrant circadian system contributes to the progression of disease. We believe that this research is worth future explorations, as it may provide novel therapies for serious life-style-related diseases in humans.”



JPOST VIDEOS THAT MIGHT INTEREST YOU:

Join Jerusalem Post Premium Plus now for just $5 and upgrade your experience with an ads-free website and exclusive content. Click here>>

Related Content

‘THE TORAH, with its myriad laws and directives, never once explicitly requires a person to be tranq
October 17, 2018
Be. Here. Now. An introduction to Jewish mindfulness

By BEN EPSTEIN