Abele SH, Meadows KE, Medeiros D, Silver AC. Time is on the Immune System’s Side, Yes it is. Yale J Biol Med. 2019;92(2):225-231. Published 2019 Jun 27.
From bacteria to mammals, nearly all organisms have adapted their physiology and behavior to a daily rhythm. These circadian (daily) rhythms influence virtually all aspects of physiological architecture (i.e., from gene expression to organismal behavior). Therefore, it is not surprising that several features of the immune response are regulated in a time-of-day dependent manner. The field of chrono-immunology has expanded tremendously over the past decade. In this abridged review, we present studies from the past five years that have revealed new parameters of the immune system that demonstrate daily variations in the control of pathogens and response to microbial components. These studies analyzed how the disruption of circadian rhythms impairs immune function, how microbial components alter the circadian clock, and how immune responses demonstrate daily variations in human subjects. Further elucidating the intricate connections between the circadian clock and the immune system will hopefully provide opportunities for chrono-immunotherapy in disease treatment and prevention.