Abstract

Robust sleep/wake rhythms are important for health and cognitive function. Unfortunately, many people are living in an environment where their circadian system is challenged by inappropriate meal- or work-times. Here we scheduled food access to the sleep time and examined the impact on learning and memory in mice. Under these conditions, we demonstrate that the molecular clock in the master pacemaker, the suprachiasmatic nucleus (SCN), is unaltered while the molecular clock in the hippocampus is synchronized by the timing of food availability. This chronic circadian misalignment causes reduced hippocampal long term potentiation and total CREB expression. Importantly this mis-timed feeding resulted in dramatic deficits in hippocampal-dependent learning and memory. Our findings suggest that the timing of meals have far-reaching effects on hippocampal physiology and learned behaviour.

Article and author information

Author details

  1. Dawn Hsiao-Wei Loh

    Department of Psychiatry and Biobehavioral Sciences, David Geffen School of Medicine, University of California, Los Angeles, Los Angeles, United States
    For correspondence
    hloh@ucla.edu
    Competing interests
    The authors declare that no competing interests exist.
  2. Shekib A Jami

    Molecular, Cellular, and Integrative Physiology Ph.D. Program, University of California, Los Angeles, Los Angeles, United States
    Competing interests
    The authors declare that no competing interests exist.
  3. Richard E Flores

    Department of Psychiatry and Biobehavioral Sciences, David Geffen School of Medicine, University of California, Los Angeles, Los Angeles, United States
    Competing interests
    The authors declare that no competing interests exist.
  4. Danny Truong

    Department of Psychiatry and Biobehavioral Sciences, David Geffen School of Medicine, University of California, Los Angeles, Los Angeles, United States
    Competing interests
    The authors declare that no competing interests exist.
  5. Cristina A Ghiani

    Department of Pathology and Psychiatry, David Geffen School of Medicine, University of California, Los Angeles, Los Angeles, United States
    Competing interests
    The authors declare that no competing interests exist.
  6. Thomas J O'Dell

    Department of Physiology, David Geffen School of Medicine, University of California, Los Angeles, Los Angeles, United States
    Competing interests
    The authors declare that no competing interests exist.
  7. Chris S Colwell

    Department of Psychiatry and Biobehavioral Sciences, David Geffen School of Medicine, University of California, Los Angeles, Los Angeles, United States
    Competing interests
    The authors declare that no competing interests exist.

Reviewing Editor

  1. Joseph S Takahashi, Howard Hughes Medical Institute, University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, United States

Ethics

Animal experimentation: This study was performed in strict accordance with the recommendations in the Guide for the Care and Use of Laboratory Animals of the National Institutes of Health. All of the animals were handled according to approved institutional animal care and use committee (IACUC) protocols of the University of California Los Angeles (Protocol 1998-183).

Version history

  1. Received: June 16, 2015
  2. Accepted: November 19, 2015
  3. Accepted Manuscript published: December 10, 2015 (version 1)
  4. Version of Record published: December 23, 2015 (version 2)

Copyright

© 2015, Loh et al.

This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License permitting unrestricted use and redistribution provided that the original author and source are credited.

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  1. Dawn Hsiao-Wei Loh
  2. Shekib A Jami
  3. Richard E Flores
  4. Danny Truong
  5. Cristina A Ghiani
  6. Thomas J O'Dell
  7. Chris S Colwell
(2015)
Misaligned feeding impairs memories
eLife 4:e09460.
https://doi.org/10.7554/eLife.09460

Share this article

https://doi.org/10.7554/eLife.09460

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