Latitudinal clines: An evolutionary view on biological rhythms

Roelof A. Hut, Silvia Paolucci, Roi Dor, Charalambos P. Kyriacou, Serge Daan

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Properties of the circadian and annual timing systems are expected to vary systematically with latitude on the basis of different annual light and temperature patterns at higher latitudes, creating specific selection pressures. We review literature with respect to latitudinal clines in circadian phenotypes as well as in polymorphisms of circadian clock genes and their possible association with annual timing. The use of latitudinal (and altitudinal) clines in identifying selective forces acting on biological rhythms is discussed, and we evaluate how these studies can reveal novel molecular and physiological components of these rhythms.

Original languageEnglish
Article number20130433
JournalProceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences
Issue number1765
StatePublished - Aug 2013
Externally publishedYes


  • Circadian
  • Circannual
  • Diapause
  • Latitude
  • Photoperiod
  • Reproduction


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