February 16, 2010

The genetics of morning larks: Louis Ptacek

In this week’s episode, Dr. Louis Ptacek, an investigator for the Howard Hughes Medical Institute and a professor at the University of California - San Francisco, discusses how alterations in our genes (called “mutations”) are responsible for why "morning larks" have to wake up in the middle of the night.

Louis is interested in understanding certain aspects of normal brain function, such as sleep. In my chat with him, he talks about our body’s natural circadian rhythm and how it is controlled by a “feedback loop” that controls gene expression and protein construction.

More on the Ptacek Lab's research

Hosted by Osama Ahmed