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Role of clock genes and the influence of melatonin on monocyte differentiation and immunosenescence

Grant number: 22/04467-0
Support Opportunities:Scholarships in Brazil - Scientific Initiation
Effective date (Start): August 01, 2022
Effective date (End): July 31, 2023
Field of knowledge:Biological Sciences - Immunology - Cellular Immunology
Principal Investigator:José Cesar Rosa Neto
Grantee:Ana Beatriz Lima Pedroza
Host Institution: Instituto de Ciências Biomédicas (ICB). Universidade de São Paulo (USP). São Paulo , SP, Brazil


The immune system is responsible for the body's defense and repair process, for this, it recognizes its own molecules and those that are not of the individual. In principle, the immune system is divided into innate and adaptive, being differentiated by the level of specificity of the cell receptors present in each one. All this is to maintain the homeostasis and integrity of the body. With aging, deregulation in the production of cells and pro and anti-inflammatory cytokines is seen, increasing the likelihood of chronic inflammation and becoming more vulnerable to any type of disease. In addition, aging leads to an imbalance in the circadian cycle, impairing the sleep-wake cycle and all the benefits it brings, and to a process of immunosenescence, in which the immune system is weakened. The circadian cycle controls several body mechanisms, for this, the clock genes have positive and negative feedback methods. In this way, a healthy lifestyle with adequate hours of exposure to light regulates the production of the hormone melatonin, which is an important regulator of mitochondrial functioning, antioxidant, and thus anti-aging. In addition, melatonin is involved with the immune system and may act as an anti-inflammatory agent, interfering with the polarization of monocytes for the prevalence of M2. However, little is known in the literature about the relationship between the effects of melatonin on macrophages and its relationship with the expression of different clock genes. Thus, we intend to explore this gap in this project.(AU)

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