UMMS Affiliation

Department of Neurobiology; Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences, Program in Neuroscience; Department of Molecular, Cell and Cancer Biology; Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Pharmacology; NeuroNexus Institute; Weaver Lab

Publication Date


Document Type

Article Postprint


Albumins; Animals; Circadian Rhythm; Genes, Reporter; Luciferases; Mice; Photoperiod; Suprachiasmatic Nucleus


Cellular and Molecular Physiology | Neuroscience and Neurobiology


Circadian rhythms are endogenously generated physiological and molecular rhythms with a cycle length of about 24 h. Bioluminescent reporters have been exceptionally useful for studying circadian rhythms in numerous species. Here, we report development of a reporter mouse generated by modification of a widely expressed and highly rhythmic gene encoding D-site albumin promoter binding protein (Dbp). In this line of mice, firefly luciferase is expressed from the Dbp locus in a Cre recombinase-dependent manner, allowing assessment of bioluminescence rhythms in specific cellular populations. A mouse line in which luciferase expression was Cre-independent was also generated. The Dbp reporter alleles do not alter Dbp gene expression rhythms in liver or circadian locomotor activity rhythms. In vivo and ex vivo studies show the utility of the reporter alleles for monitoring rhythmicity. Our studies reveal cell-type-specific characteristics of rhythms among neuronal populations within the suprachiasmatic nuclei ex vivo. In vivo studies show Dbp-driven bioluminescence rhythms in the liver of Albumin-Cre;DbpKI/+ "liver reporter" mice. After a shift of the lighting schedule, locomotor activity achieved the proper phase relationship with the new lighting cycle more rapidly than hepatic bioluminescence did. As previously shown, restricting food access to the daytime altered the phase of hepatic rhythmicity. Our model allowed assessment of the rate of recovery from misalignment once animals were provided with food ad libitum. These studies confirm the previously demonstrated circadian misalignment following environmental perturbations and reveal the utility of this model for minimally invasive, longitudinal monitoring of rhythmicity from specific mouse tissues.


circadian rhythms, bioluminescence, luciferase, misalignment, Dbp, albumin D-element binding protein, In Vivo Imaging System, LumiCycle In Vivo, reporter mouse, peripheral oscillators

Rights and Permissions

© 2022 SAGE Publications. Accepted manuscript posted as allowed by the publisher's author archiving and sharing policy at Reuse is restricted to non-commercial and no derivative uses.

DOI of Published Version



Smith CB, van der Vinne V, McCartney E, Stowie AC, Leise TL, Martin-Burgos B, Molyneux PC, Garbutt LA, Brodsky MH, Davidson AJ, Harrington ME, Dallmann R, Weaver DR. Cell-Type-Specific Circadian Bioluminescence Rhythms in Dbp Reporter Mice. J Biol Rhythms. 2022 Feb;37(1):53-77. doi: 10.1177/07487304211069452. Epub 2022 Jan 13. PMID: 35023384; PMCID: PMC9245534.

Journal/Book/Conference Title

Journal of biological rhythms


This article is based on a previously available preprint in bioRxiv.

Related Resources

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PubMed ID


Smith_CB_et al_Supplemental Info_120421 copy.pdf (1581 kB)
Smith et al JBR 21-0117-R1_120421 Supplementary Information