14:08 04 October 2013
A team of researchers in Kyoto University, who published their findings in the journal Science, claim that they found the body clock’s reset button inside the brain, which can be used to switch the clock to a new time zone in a single day.
The findings will help researchers move closer to developing targeted drugs that can be used to tweak the body clock in order to avoid jet lag and the pains of shift work.
The study's authors concluded: "Studies have shown that chronic jet lag and rotating shift work can increase an individual's risk of developing hypertension, obesity, and other metabolic disorders.”
"Our results identify vasopressin signalling as a possible therapeutic target for the management of circadian rhythm [body clock] misalignment."
Meanwhile, Dr Michael Hastings, a Medical Research Council body clock researcher, told the BBC’s Science in Action Programme that it was a remarkable study. He added: “It really is very exciting for our field.”
"There's been many false dawns when it comes to a cure for jet lag, but I think this time they're close to the money."
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