According to the Daily Mail, researchers have captured the connections inside the suprachiasmatic nucleus, which makes the body run on time.
Researchers from the Harvard John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences (SEAS), the University of California Santa Barbara, and Washington University in St. Louis have managed to show for the first time how neurons in the SCN are connected to each other.
They say understanding this structure and how it reacts to problems could help tackle everything from diabetes to PTSD.
Researchers also found disruption to these rhythms such as shifts in work schedules or blue light exposure at night can negatively impact overall health.
‘The SCN has been so challenging to understand because the cells within it are incredibly noisy,’ said John Abel, first author of the paper and graduate student at SEAS.
‘There are more than 20,000 neurons in the SCN, each of which not only generates their own autonomous circadian oscillations but also communicates with other neurons to maintain stable phase lengths and relationships.
‘We were able to cut through that noise and figure out which cells share information with each other.’