Cyanobacteria such as PCC 7942 exhibit 24-h rhythms of gene expression that are controlled by an endogenous circadian clock that is mechanistically distinct from those described for diverse eukaryotes. Genetic and biochemical experiments over the past decade have identified key components of the circadian oscillator, input pathways that synchronize the clock with the daily environment, and output pathways that relay temporal information to downstream genes. The mechanism of the cyanobacterial circadian clock that is emerging is based principally on the assembly and disassembly of a large complex at whose heart are the proteins KaiA, KaiB, and KaiC. Signal transduction pathways that feed into and out of the clock employ protein domains that are similar to those in two-component regulatory systems of bacteria.


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  • Article Type: Review Article
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