Researchers have found a new body mechanism that may help explain why people recover slowly from jet lag. The research may also be used in the future to cure and prevent jet lag.
Researchers at Oxford University and pharmaceutical company, F. Hoffman La Roche, were examining patterns of gene expression in the suprachiamsatic nuclei, the area of the brain controlling the circadian rhythm or the body clock in mammals.
The 2013 study identified a molecule, called SIK1, in mice that limits the ability of the body’s internal clock to adjust to changes in cycles of light and darkness.
Blocking the molecule made the mice recover faster from disturbances in their usual light and dark cycle – similar to the events that lead to jet lag.
The scientists said that this research may possibly lead to the development of drugs for faster recovery from jet lag in a few years.