Dysregulation of Circadian System in Parkinson’s Disease

  • Aleksandar VidenovicEmail author


Circadian rhythms are physiological and behavioral cycles with a periodicity of approximately 24 h, generated by the endogenous biological clock, the suprachiasmatic nucleus (SCN). These rhythms influence most physiological processes, including the sleep–wake cycle. The exact pathophysiology of sleep–wake disturbances in Parkinson’s disease (PD) remains largely unknown, but the etiology is likely to be multifactorial, including influence of motor PD symptoms on sleep, adverse effects of antiparkinsonian medications, and neurodegeneration of central sleep regulatory areas. The circadian system and its main central pacemaker, the SCN, have a major influence on sleep–wake homeostasis. A growing body of evidence points to significant alterations of the circadian system in PD. Despite this, little is known about the role of the circadian system in the regulation of sleep–wake cycles in PD. In this chapter, we discuss the role of the circadian system in the regulation of the sleep–wake cycle and outline implications of circadian timekeeping in PD.


Clock Gene Circadian System Wake Cycle Circadian Disruption Melatonin Rhythm 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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© Springer-Verlag Wien 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of NeurologyNeurological Clinical Research Institute, Massachusetts General Hospital, Harvard Medical SchoolBostonUSA

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