Cookies on this website

We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you click 'Accept all cookies' we'll assume that you are happy to receive all cookies and you won't see this message again. If you click 'Reject all non-essential cookies' only necessary cookies providing core functionality such as security, network management, and accessibility will be enabled. Click 'Find out more' for information on how to change your cookie settings.

The circadian clock orchestrates global changes in transcriptional regulation on a daily basis via the bHLH-PAS transcription factor CLOCK:BMAL1. Pathways driven by other bHLH-PAS transcription factors have a homologous repressor that modulates activity on a tissue-specific basis, but none have been identified for CLOCK:BMAL1. We show here that the cancer/testis antigen PASD1 fulfills this role to suppress circadian rhythms. PASD1 is evolutionarily related to CLOCK and interacts with the CLOCK:BMAL1 complex to repress transcriptional activation. Expression of PASD1 is restricted to germline tissues in healthy individuals but can be induced in cells of somatic origin upon oncogenic transformation. Reducing PASD1 in human cancer cells significantly increases the amplitude of transcriptional oscillations to generate more robust circadian rhythms. Our results describe a function for a germline-specific protein in regulation of the circadian clock and provide a molecular link from oncogenic transformation to suppression of circadian rhythms.

Original publication




Journal article


Mol Cell

Publication Date





743 - 754


ARNTL Transcription Factors, Amino Acid Sequence, Antigens, Neoplasm, Antigens, Nuclear, CLOCK Proteins, Cell Line, Tumor, Circadian Rhythm, Conserved Sequence, Exons, Gene Expression Regulation, Neoplastic, Gene Silencing, Humans, Male, Models, Molecular, Molecular Sequence Data, Protein Structure, Tertiary, Testis