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circadian rhythm


from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun A daily rhythmic activity cycle, based on 24-hour intervals, that is exhibited by many organisms.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun The "internal body clock" that regulates the (roughly) 24-hour cycle of biological processes in animals and plants.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • noun a daily cycle of activity observed in many living organisms


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  • Innate, daily, fluctuation of behavioral and physiological functions, including sleep waking, generally tied to the 24 hour day-night cycle but sometimes to a different (e.g., 23 or 25 hour) periodicity when light/dark and other time cues are removed.

    May 13, 2008