The mammalian circadian clock is composed of interlocking feedback loops. Cryptochrome is a central component in the core negative feedback loop, whereas Rev-Erbα, a member of the nuclear receptor family, is an essential component of the interlocking loop. To understand the roles of different clock genes, we conducted a genetic interaction screen by generating single- and double-mutant mice. We found that the deletion of Rev-erbα in F-box/leucine rich-repeat protein (Fbxl3)-deficient mice rescued its long-circadian period phenotype, and our results further revealed that FBXL3 regulates Rev-Erb/retinoic acid receptor-related orphan receptor-binding element (RRE)-mediated transcription by inactivating the Rev-Erbα:histone deacetylase 3 corepressor complex. By analyzing the Fbxl3 and Cryptochrome 1 double-mutant mice, we found that FBXL3 also regulates the amplitudes of E-box–driven gene expression. These two separate roles of FBXL3 in circadian feedback loops provide a mechanism that contributes to the period determination and robustness of the clock.
 


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