Summary: The natural satellite of the planet Earth. It includes the lunar cycles or phases, the lunar month, lunar landscapes, geography, and soil.

Top Publications

  1. Regular P, Hedd A, Montevecchi W. Fishing in the dark: a pursuit-diving seabird modifies foraging behaviour in response to nocturnal light levels. PLoS ONE. 2011;6:e26763 pubmed publisher
    ..This research highlights the flexibility of breeding common murres and raises questions about the strategies and mechanisms birds use to find prey under very low light conditions. ..
  2. Voracek M, Loibl L, Kapusta N, Niederkrotenthaler T, Dervic K, Sonneck G. Not carried away by a moonlight shadow: no evidence for associations between suicide occurrence and lunar phase among more than 65,000 suicide cases in Austria, 1970-2006. Wien Klin Wochenschr. 2008;120:343-9 pubmed publisher
    Belief in lunar effects on abnormal or deviant human behavior ("moon madness") is old, common, perpetuated by the media and notably widespread among health professionals, and may thus have public health consequences...
  3. Sugama N, Park J, Park Y, Takeuchi Y, Kim S, Takemura A. Moonlight affects nocturnal Period2 transcript levels in the pineal gland of the reef fish Siganus guttatus. J Pineal Res. 2008;45:133-41 pubmed publisher
    ..It is not known how the fish recognizes cues from the moon and exerts moon-related activities...
  4. Tessmar Raible K, Raible F, Arboleda E. Another place, another timer: Marine species and the rhythms of life. Bioessays. 2011;33:165-72 pubmed publisher a multitude of environmental cycles, all of which are linked to the periodical recurrence of the sun or the moon. In accordance with these cycles, marine species exhibit a variety of biological rhythms, ranging from circadian ..
  5. Chapman S, Morrell S. Barking mad? another lunatic hypothesis bites the dust. BMJ. 2000;321:1561-3 pubmed
    To assess whether dog bites requiring hospital admission occur more at the full moon. Review of dates of admission for dog bites to accident and emergency departments, June 1997 to June 1998, compared with dates of the full moon...
  6. Molaee Govarchin Ghalae H, Zare S, Choopanloo M, Rahimian R. The lunar cycle: effects of full moon on renal colic. Urol J. 2011;8:137-40 pubmed
    To evaluate renal colic frequency in different seasons and around full moon. A total of 1481 patients with renal colic were studied retrospectively addressing days of a month both in solar and lunar calendar...
  7. Röösli M, Juni P, Braun Fahrlander C, Brinkhof M, Low N, Egger M. Sleepless night, the moon is bright: longitudinal study of lunar phase and sleep. J Sleep Res. 2006;15:149-53 pubmed
    ..We examined the influence of moon phase on sleep duration in a secondary analysis of a feasibility study of mobile telephone base stations and sleep ..
  8. Kuehnl A, Herzog M, Schmidt M, Hornung H, Jauch K, Hatz R, et al. The dark side of the moon: impact of moon phases on long-term survival, mortality and morbidity of surgery for lung cancer. Eur J Med Res. 2009;14:178-81 pubmed
    ..One superstition is, that moon phases influence surgical outcome...
  9. Nunez S, Perez Mendez L, Aguirre Jaime A. Moon cycles and violent behaviours: myth or fact?. Eur J Emerg Med. 2002;9:127-30 pubmed
    We formulated the hypothesis that lunar phases, identified by the fraction of the illuminated visible surface of the moon, have a relationship with the frequency of victims of aggression seen in an emergency department...

More Information


  1. Takemura A, Ueda S, Hiyakawa N, Nikaido Y. A direct influence of moonlight intensity on changes in melatonin production by cultured pineal glands of the golden rabbitfish, Siganus guttatus. J Pineal Res. 2006;40:236-41 pubmed
    ..It is not known how the fish perceive changes in cues from the moon. One possible explanation is that rabbitfish utilize changes in moonlight intensity to establish synchrony...
  2. Kaiser T, Neumann D, Heckel D. Timing the tides: genetic control of diurnal and lunar emergence times is correlated in the marine midge Clunio marinus. BMC Genet. 2011;12:49 pubmed publisher
    ..We examined the genetic control of lunar and diurnal rhythmicity in the marine midge Clunio marinus (Chironomidae, Diptera), a species for which the correct timing of adult emergence is critical in natural populations...
  3. Román E, Soriano G, Fuentes M, Gálvez M, Fernández C. The influence of the full moon on the number of admissions related to gastrointestinal bleeding. Int J Nurs Pract. 2004;10:292-6 pubmed
    ..whether the number of admissions for gastrointestinal bleeding to our bleeding unit increases during the full moon. In a prospective study, we included 447 consecutive patients with gastrointestinal haemorrhage admitted to our ..
  4. Levy O, Appelbaum L, Leggat W, Gothlif Y, Hayward D, Miller D, et al. Light-responsive cryptochromes from a simple multicellular animal, the coral Acropora millepora. Science. 2007;318:467-70 pubmed
    ..the synchronization of fundamentally important behaviors such as mass spawning, cry2 expression increased on full moon nights versus new moon nights...
  5. Horning M, Trillmich F. Lunar cycles in diel prey migrations exert a stronger effect on the diving of juveniles than adult Galápagos fur seals. Proc Biol Sci. 1999;266:1127-32 pubmed
    ..Using electronic dive recorders, we determined that seals dived less and deeper on moonlit nights than at new moon, and incurred body mass losses...
  6. Di Prampero P. Cycling on Earth, in space, on the Moon. Eur J Appl Physiol. 2000;82:345-60 pubmed
    ..For values of s from 10 to 20 m x s(-1) and r from 50 to 200 m, this vectorial sum ranges from 1.05 to 5.03 g(L) (0.17-0.83 g). ..
  7. Eberhart L, Jakobi G, Winterhalter M, Georgieff M. [Impact of environmental factors on the incidence of posteropative nausea and vomiting. Influence of the weather and cycle of the moon]. Anasthesiol Intensivmed Notfallmed Schmerzther. 2000;35:635-40 pubmed
    ..participants stressed the impact of environmental factors, like weather and--even more surprising--the phase of the moon, on the occurrence of postoperative nausea and vomiting (PONV)...
  8. Takemura A, Rahman M, Park Y. External and internal controls of lunar-related reproductive rhythms in fishes. J Fish Biol. 2010;76:7-26 pubmed publisher
    Reproductive activities of many fish species are, to some extent, entrained to cues from the moon. During the spawning season, synchronous spawning is repeated at intervals of c...
  9. Ugolini A, Boddi V, Mercatelli L, Castellini C. Moon orientation in adult and young sandhoppers under artificial light. Proc Biol Sci. 2005;272:2189-94 pubmed
    ..adults and laboratory-born young of the sandhopper Talitrus saltator, deal with the identification and use of the moon as an orientating factor...
  10. Rahman M, Takemura A, Takano K. Lunar synchronization of testicular development and steroidogenesis in rabbitfish. Comp Biochem Physiol B Biochem Mol Biol. 2001;129:367-73 pubmed
    ..The duration and percentage of sperm motility was low 1 week before spawning (the new moon), but increased significantly on the day of spawning (the first lunar quarter)...
  11. Wiechert U, Halliday A, Lee D, Snyder G, Taylor L, Rumble D. Oxygen isotopes and the moon-forming giant impact. Science. 2001;294:345-8 pubmed
    ..The three oxygen isotopes (delta17O) provide no evidence that isotopic heterogeneity on the Moon was created by lunar impacts.
  12. Kumar V, Kumar N, Isaacson G. Superstition and post-tonsillectomy hemorrhage. Laryngoscope. 2004;114:2031-3 pubmed
    ..occur more frequently in redheaded children, in patterns of threes, on Friday-the-13th days, or with the full moon. Case-control analysis...
  13. Lewandowsky S, Oberauer K, Gignac G. NASA faked the moon landing--therefore, (climate) science is a hoax: an anatomy of the motivated rejection of science. Psychol Sci. 2013;24:622-33 pubmed publisher
    ..Acceptance of science, by contrast, was strongly associated with the perception of a consensus among scientists. ..
  14. Benbadis S, Chang S, Hunter J, Wang W. The influence of the full moon on seizure frequency: myth or reality?. Epilepsy Behav. 2004;5:596-7 pubmed
    ..A separate analysis revealed that for nonepileptic seizures, there was an increase at the full moon, and for epileptic seizures, an increase in the last quarter...
  15. Sábato M, de Melo L, Magni E, Young R, Coelho C. A note on the effect of the full moon on the activity of wild maned wolves, Chrysocyon brachyurus. Behav Processes. 2006;73:228-30 pubmed
    ..In the case of nocturnal animals this occurs when there is a full moon; however, the response of predators to the changes in their prey behaviour is relatively unknown...
  16. Holzheimer R, Nitz C, Gresser U. Lunar phase does not influence surgical quality. Eur J Med Res. 2003;8:414-8 pubmed
    ..The topic is hot in German TV program. It is believed that at new moon the rate of bleeding complications is increased and operations during the waning phase of the moon would be best to ..
  17. Sok M, Mikulecky M, Erzen J. Onset of spontaneous pneumothorax and the synodic lunar cycle. Med Hypotheses. 2001;57:638-41 pubmed
    ..The study included a total of 244 patients, 203 males and 41 females. The data were arranged along the first (new moon) to 28th day (one day before another new moon) of the synodic lunar cycle...
  18. Foster R, Roenneberg T. Human responses to the geophysical daily, annual and lunar cycles. Curr Biol. 2008;18:R784-R794 pubmed publisher
    ..upon human culture, though despite a persistent belief that our mental health and other behaviours are modulated by the phase of the moon, there is no solid evidence that human biology is in any way regulated by the lunar cycle.
  19. Lazzer S, Plaino L, Antonutto G. The energetics of cycling on Earth, Moon and Mars. Eur J Appl Physiol. 2011;111:357-66 pubmed publisher
    ..Finally, since during the next decades the return of Man on the Moon and, why not, a mission to Mars can be realistically hypothesised, a section is dedicated to cycling-based ..
  20. Bachleitner W, Kempinger L, Wülbeck C, Rieger D, Helfrich Forster C. Moonlight shifts the endogenous clock of Drosophila melanogaster. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2007;104:3538-43 pubmed
    ..We also show that this adaptation depends on retinal input but is independent of cryptochrome. ..
  21. Fernández Duque E, de la Iglesia H, Erkert H. Moonstruck primates: owl monkeys (Aotus) need moonlight for nocturnal activity in their natural environment. PLoS ONE. 2010;5:e12572 pubmed publisher
    ..Furthermore, our data indicate that changes in sensitivity to specific environmental stimuli may have been an essential key for evolutionary switches between diurnal and nocturnal habits in primates. ..
  22. Takemura A, Susilo E, Rahman M, Morita M. Perception and possible utilization of moonlight intensity for reproductive activities in a lunar-synchronized spawner, the golden rabbitfish. J Exp Zool A Comp Exp Biol. 2004;301:844-51 pubmed
    ..It is considered that they perceive and utilize cues from the moon in order to be synchronized gonadal development and spawning with the lunar cycle...
  23. Eisenburger P, Schreiber W, Vergeiner G, Sterz F, Holzer M, Herkner H, et al. Lunar phases are not related to the occurrence of acute myocardial infarction and sudden cardiac death. Resuscitation. 2003;56:187-9 pubmed
    ..Medical data had been collected prospectively on the patient's admission. The lunar phases were defined as full moon+/-1 day, new moon+/-1 day and the days in between as waning and waxing moon...
  24. Exadaktylos A, Hauser S, Luterbacher J, Marti U, Zimmermann H, Studer U. The moon and the stones. Can the moon's attractive forces cause renal colic?. J Emerg Med. 2002;22:303-5 pubmed
  25. Hicks Caskey W, Potter D. Effect of the full moon on a sample of developmentally delayed, institutionalized women. Percept Mot Skills. 1991;72:1375-80 pubmed
    ..A grid representing the 24-hr. period of the full moon (a), the three days prior to the day of the full moon (b), the three days after the full moon (c), and the balance ..
  26. Lang A, Kalko E, Römer H, Bockholdt C, Dechmann D. Activity levels of bats and katydids in relation to the lunar cycle. Oecologia. 2006;146:659-66 pubmed
    ..A likely example of this is the so-called "lunar phobia" or reduced activity of bats during full moon. The main reason for lunar phobia was thought to be that bats adjust their activity to avoid predators...
  27. Packer C, Swanson A, Ikanda D, Kushnir H. Fear of darkness, the full moon and the nocturnal ecology of African lions. PLoS ONE. 2011;6:e22285 pubmed publisher moonlight when hunting humans as when hunting herbivores and that lions are most dangerous to humans when the moon is faint or below the horizon...
  28. Wake R, Fukuda D, Yoshiyama M, Shimada K, Yoshikawa J. The effect of the gravitation of the moon on acute myocardial infarction. Am J Emerg Med. 2007;25:256-8 pubmed
  29. Lawrence D, Feldman W, Barraclough B, Binder A, Elphic R, Maurice S, et al. Global elemental maps of the moon: the Lunar Prospector gamma-Ray spectrometer. Science. 1998;281:1484-9 pubmed
    ..Counting rate maps of iron gamma-rays show a surface iron distribution that is in general agreement with other measurements from Clementine and the Lunar Prospector neutron detectors. ..
  30. Pinet P, Jaeger A, Cordier E, Potin G, Le Corre M. Celestial moderation of tropical seabird behavior. PLoS ONE. 2011;6:e27663 pubmed publisher
    ..b>Moon cycles can also affect periodic behavior of birds...
  31. Last K, Bailhache T, Kramer C, Kyriacou C, Rosato E, Olive P. Tidal, daily, and lunar-day activity cycles in the marine polychaete Nereis virens. Chronobiol Int. 2009;26:167-83 pubmed publisher
    ..Although activity cycles in N. virens at the population level are robust, at the individual level they are particularly labile, suggesting complex biological clock-control with multiple clock output pathways. ..
  32. Buckley N, Whyte I, Dawson A. There are days ... and moons. Self-poisoning is not lunacy. Med J Aust. 1993;159:786-9 pubmed
    ..At the new moon 60% of self-poisonings were in women, compared with 45% when the moon was full...
  33. Rahman M, Takemura A, Takano K. Lunar synchronization of in vitro steroidogenesis in ovaries of the golden rabbitfish, Siganus guttatus (Bloch). Gen Comp Endocrinol. 2002;125:1-8 pubmed
    ..progesterone (P), cortisol, estradiol-17beta (E2) and testosterone, during the two lunar phases, the new moon (1 week before spawning) and the first lunar quarter (just before spawning)...
  34. Crawford I, Baldwin E, Taylor E, Bailey J, Tsembelis K. On the survivability and detectability of terrestrial meteorites on the moon. Astrobiology. 2008;8:242-52 pubmed publisher
    ..Armstrong et al. (2002) pointed out that such materials, in the form of terrestrial meteorites, may exist on the Moon and be of considerable astrobiological interest if biomarkers from early Earth are preserved within them...
  35. Ramos J, Barletta M, Dantas D, Lima A, Costa M. Influence of moon phase on fish assemblages in estuarine mangrove tidal creeks. J Fish Biol. 2011;78:344-54 pubmed publisher
    Significant differences in the composition of fish assemblages during different moon phases were detected in mangrove tidal creeks of the Goiana Estuary...
  36. Kashiwagi T, Park Y, Park J, Imamura S, Takeuchi Y, Hur S, et al. Moonlight affects mRNA abundance of arylalkylamine N-acetyltransferase in the retina of a lunar-synchronized spawner, the goldlined spinefoot. J Exp Zool A Ecol Genet Physiol. 2013;319:505-16 pubmed publisher
    ..cycle in its reproductive activity and repeats gonadal development toward and spawning around the first quarter moon. Whether the retina of this species responds to moonlight is unknown...
  37. Keskil Z, Keskil S. The precise human bioclock, possibly imported. Med Hypotheses. 2002;58:257-60 pubmed
    ..Interestingly, primates are the only beings that have a free-running cycle longer than 24 hours. This bioclock may be set by lunar entrainment, or may be set extraterrestrially? ..
  38. Souza N, Andrade Coelho C, Silva V, Peixoto A, Rangel E. Moonlight and blood-feeding behaviour of Lutzomyia intermedia and Lutzomyia whitmani (Diptera:Psychodidae:Phlebotominae), vectors of American cutaneous leishmaniasis in Brazil. Mem Inst Oswaldo Cruz. 2005;100:39-42 pubmed
    ..intermedia and L. whitmani females collected while blood-feeding, whereas the opposite was observed for the CDC traps. ..
  39. Gladstone G, Hurley D, Retherford K, Feldman P, Pryor W, Chaufray J, et al. LRO-LAMP observations of the LCROSS impact plume. Science. 2010;330:472-6 pubmed publisher
  40. Nørgaard T, Henschel J, Wehner R. The night-time temporal window of locomotor activity in the Namib Desert long-distance wandering spider, Leucorchestris arenicola. J Comp Physiol A Neuroethol Sens Neural Behav Physiol. 2006;192:365-72 pubmed
    ..We further show that they are able to navigate under the very dim light conditions prevailing on moonless nights, and thus do not have to rely on the moon or on moon-related patterns of polarised light as potential compass cues.
  41. Nishida A, Nordi N, Alves R. The lunar-tide cycle viewed by crustacean and mollusc gatherers in the State of Paraíba, Northeast Brazil and their influence in collection attitudes. J Ethnobiol Ethnomed. 2006;2:1 pubmed
    ..The results showed that the gatherers have an accurate comprehension of tidal phenomenon based on their exploitation of natural resources, which perpetuates through generations...
  42. Zimecki M. The lunar cycle: effects on human and animal behavior and physiology. Postepy Hig Med Dosw (Online). 2006;60:1-7 pubmed
    ..causes (cardiovascular and acute coronary events, variceal hemorrhage, diarrhea, urinary retention) correlated with moon phases...
  43. Tan P, Xu M, Sessler D, Bashour C. Operation timing does not affect outcome after coronary artery bypass graft surgery. Anesthesiology. 2009;111:785-9 pubmed publisher
    ..bypass graft surgery patients were analyzed according to the hour of the day, day of the workweek, month, and moon phase in which the surgery started...
  44. Sullivan M, Wuenschel M, Able K. Inter and intra-estuary variability in ingress, condition and settlement of the American eel Anguilla rostrata: implications for estimating and understanding recruitment. J Fish Biol. 2009;74:1949-69 pubmed publisher
  45. Bueno A, Iessi I, Damasceno D. [Influences of lunar cycle in labor: myth or scientific finding?]. Rev Bras Enferm. 2010;63:477-9 pubmed
    ..the labor and delivery floor is that it is busier during certain phases of the lunar cycle, specifically the full moon. Although some studies have demonstrated an increase in deliveries that are related to the lunar cycle, there has ..
  46. Reichhardt T. Science comes second as NASA makes lunar plans. Nature. 2005;437:605 pubmed
  47. Nelson G. Time to move on from shuttle, says astronaut. Interviewed by Tony Reichhardt. Nature. 2005;436:163 pubmed
  48. Bushnell M, Claisse J, Laidley C. Lunar and seasonal patterns in fecundity of an indeterminate, multiple-spawning surgeonfish, the yellow tang Zebrasoma flavescens. J Fish Biol. 2010;76:1343-61 pubmed publisher
    ..egg production, female gonado-somatic index (I(G)) and the fraction of females with eggs were observed at the full moon of each sampled month...
  49. Parga J. Nocturnal ranging by a diurnal primate: are ring-tailed lemurs (Lemur catta) cathemeral?. Primates. 2011;52:201-5 pubmed publisher
    ..activity showed that a greater rate of travel occurred during moonlit periods as opposed to periods when the moon had not yet risen...
  50. Reichhardt T. Robotic missions set to benefit as US takes aim at the Moon. Nature. 2004;427:183 pubmed
  51. Gorshkov E, Bondarenko E, Shapovalov S, Sokolovskii V, Troshichev O. [The use of a detector of the extremely weak radiation as a variometer of gravitation field]. Biofizika. 2001;46:816-8 pubmed
  52. Shuhaiber J, Fava J, Shin T, Dobrilovic N, Ehsan A, Bert A, et al. The influence of seasons and lunar cycle on hospital outcomes following ascending aortic dissection repair. Interact Cardiovasc Thorac Surg. 2013;17:818-22 pubmed publisher
    ..04, 95% confidence interval [95% CI] = 1.01-1.07, P = 0.012), and the odds of dying in the full-moon cycle vs the new moon cycle was significantly reduced (OR = 0.21, 95% CI = 0.05-0.81, P = 0.024)...
  53. Raven J, Cockell C. Influence on photosynthesis of starlight, moonlight, planetlight, and light pollution (reflections on photosynthetically active radiation in the universe). Astrobiology. 2006;6:668-75 pubmed
    ..Photosynthesis on an ELP using PAR reflected from a natural satellite with the same size as our Moon, but at the Roche limit, could support a low rate of photosynthesis at full Moon...