Public Release: 

Are you moonstruck?

How lunar cycles affect life

Oxford University Press USA

IMAGE

IMAGE: This publication is about how lunar cycles affect life. view more

Credit: courtesy of Oxford University Press

From werewolves to the Apocalypse, humanity has fashioned countless legends surrounding the influence of the Moon. And even though the dead did not walk the Earth during the 2015 Blood Moon, it has become apparent that many organisms really are affected indirectly, and in some cases directly, by the lunar cycle.

In MOONSTRUCK (Oxford University Press; Nov. 2015), Ernest Naylor separates fact from science fiction to examine the effects of the Moon cycle on living organisms. Increasing evidence reveals that many creatures -- marine, fresh water and dry-land species -- are controlled by internal, circalunar biological clocks. Naylor suggests that since the advent of evolution on Earth, which occurred shortly after the formation of the Moon, animals evolved adaptations to the lunar cycle. In other words, the lunar patterns are embedded in their genes.

MOONSTRUCK considers whether, if Moon-clock genes occur in other animals, might they also exist in us?

###

Disclaimer: AAAS and EurekAlert! are not responsible for the accuracy of news releases posted to EurekAlert! by contributing institutions or for the use of any information through the EurekAlert system.