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CCB Symposium 2011 - From Cells to Clinic

UCSD's newly formed Center for Chronobiology (CCB) hosted its 2nd annual chronobiology symposium on February 9-11, 2011. The theme for the symposium was "From Cells to Clinic." A select, stellar group of chronobiologists attended and spoke at the conference. The aims of the conference were to: 1. Provide participants with a comprehensive view of modern Chronobiology. 2. Exchange a broad spectrum of ideas and techniques in Chronobiology. 3. Promote interactions among the faculty and lab personnel of the UCSD Center for Chronobiology, the invited speakers, and other participants. 4. Further acquaint the speakers, their groups, and other registrants with the depth and breadth of Chronobiology research conducted at UCSD. Chronobiology is the biology of time, or the study of internal biological clocks. Biological clocks are found at all levels in living organisms. They range from oscillations found in nerve cells on the millisecond scale to oscillations in minutes, hours, days, and years in a variety of organisms and tissues. Although the commonly used phrase "your biological clock is ticking" relates to the window of years for becoming parents, many clocks are found in humans, such as the time to puberty, to menopause, and aging "clocks." Our research unit is focused on just one of these chronobiological phenomena: the daily or circadian clock. The name circadian comes from the Latin circa, meaning "approximately," and diem or dies, "day;" thus, the word means "about one day." Examples of human health issues related to circadian rhythms—biological oscillations in activity that recur with a period of “about one day”—are the problems associated with jet lag and shift work, the depression of Seasonal Affective Disorder, and time-of-day differences in response to medications and treatments.