Regulation of the cyanobacterial circadian clock by electrochemically controlled extracellular electron transfer

Yue Lu, Koichi Nishio, Shoichi Matsuda, Yuki Toshima, Hiroshi Ito, Tomohiro Konno, Kazuhiko Ishihara, Souichiro Kato, Kazuhito Hashimoto, Shuji Nakanishi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

25 Citations (Scopus)


There is growing awareness that circadian clocks are closely related to the intracellular redox state across a range of species. As the redox state is determined by the exchange of the redox species, electrochemically controlled extracellular electron transfer (EC-EET), a process in which intracellular electrons are exchanged with extracellular electrodes, is a promising approach for the external regulation of circadian clocks. Herein, we discuss whether the circadian clock can be regulated by EC-EET using the cyanobacterium Synechococcus elongatus PCC7942 as a model system. Invivo monitoring of chlorophyll fluorescence revealed that the redox state of the plastoquionone pool could be controlled with EC-EET by simply changing the electrode potential. As a result, the endogenous circadian clock of S. elongatus cells was successfully entrained through periodically modulated EC-EET by emulating the natural light/dark cycle, even under constant illumination conditions. This is the first example of regulating the biological clock by electrochemistry.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2208-2211
Number of pages4
JournalAngewandte Chemie - International Edition
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 2014 Feb 17
Externally publishedYes


  • circadian clock
  • cyanobacteria
  • electrochemistry
  • electron transfer

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Catalysis
  • Chemistry(all)


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