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Circadian rhythms in healthy aging--effects downstream from the pacemakerUsing both previously published findings and entirely new data, we present evidence in support of the argument that the circadian dysfunction of advancing age in the healthy human is primarily one of failing to transduce the circadian signal from the circadian timing system (CTS) to rhythms "downstream" from the pacemaker rather than one of failing to generate the circadian signal itself. Two downstream rhythms are considered: subjective alertness and objective performance. For subjective alertness, we show that in both normal nychthemeral (24 h routine, sleeping at night) and unmasking (36 h of constant wakeful bed rest) conditions, advancing age, especially in men, leads to flattening of subjective alertness rhythms, even when circadian temperature rhythms are relatively robust. For objective performance, an unmasking experiment involving manual dexterity, visual search, and visual vigilance tasks was used to demonstrate that the relationship between temperature and performance is strong in the young, but not in older subjects (and especially not in older men).
Document ID
20040141539
Document Type
Reprint (Version printed in journal)
External Source(s)
Authors
Monk, T. H. (Western Psychiatric Institute and Clinic, University of Pittsburgh Medical Center Pennsylvania, United States)
Kupfer, D. J.
Date Acquired
August 22, 2013
Publication Date
May 1, 2000
Publication Information
Publication: Chronobiology international
Volume: 17
Issue: 3
ISSN: 0742-0528
Subject Category
Life Sciences (General)
Funding Number(s)
CONTRACT_GRANT: AG15136
CONTRACT_GRANT: AG06836
CONTRACT_GRANT: AG13396
Distribution Limits
Public
Copyright
Other
Keywords
Non-NASA Center
NASA Discipline Regulatory Physiology
NASA Program Biomedical Research and Countermeasures