The Science of Time: Chronobiology

Every living organism – including humans – responds to the cycles of the sun and moon. Chronobiology studies those periodic cycles and how organisms adapt to them, especially through our internal biological clocks. Our daily clock runs on oscillations or circadian rhythms in our nervous system and cells that repeat in cycles throughout the day – for example, sleep-wake cycles and body temperature cycles. Within those cycles, our biological rhythms run in shorter repeated cycles that vary alertness, fatigue, and peak functioning.