1124   Visual presentation

Its my time, its my clock!

Author: Sangeeta Rani
Department of Zoology, University of Lucknow, India

Imagine having a faulty clock? We will certainly miss the opportunity and be the loser!

The concept of time originates with the adjustment of body's physiology to the external environment via biological clocks. We all have a body clock that organizes daily and seasonal activities at the most opportune time of the day and year.

The disturbed clock function will lead to misalignment of internal time with the external time. The common risks associated with it are the compromised sleep quality and quantity (sleep fragmentation, altered duration, increased inertia and latency) leading to daytime sleepiness and fatigue, cognitive impairment, anxiety, depression and mood disorders. This reduces the efficiency of individuals.

The extended hours of artificial light at night due to work environment or social activities and the use of social and electronic media have extended our day into night causing social jetlag. The young generation being tech savvy is more prone to such disorders. This compromises their grades and overall performance. Thus, the technology has hijacked our quality of life.

The disturbed clock can be corrected by adjusting the body functions with the rhythmic environment e.g. simply by rescheduling the school start times, the natural sleep wake cycle can be restored and the sleep quality may improve significantly.

The understanding of body clock functions can be useful to the students, teachers, and parents in resolving the clock related health problems by integrating the expertise of behaviourists, physiologists and psychologists.

Thus, the theme for PCST2020 Time, Technology or Transformation is quite relevant in the current scenario. It conveys the message how rapidly changing technologies have transformed the concept of time in biological world. Further, the recognition of field by Nobel Committee for Physiology or Medicine 2017 is a testimony to the importance of biological clocks for us!

Co-author: Shalie Malik
Department of Zoology, University of Lucknow, India

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