© Author(s) 2016. How neurons encode intracellular biochemical signalling cascades into electrical signals is not fully understood. Neurons in the central circadian clock in mammals provide a model system to investigate electrical encoding of biochemical timing signals. Here, using experimental and modelling approaches, we show how the activation of glycogen synthase kinase 3 (GSK3) contributes to neuronal excitability through regulation of the persistent sodium current (I NaP). I NaP exhibits a day/night difference in peak magnitude and is regulated by GSK3. Using mathematical modelling, we predict and confirm that GSK3 activation of I NaP affects the action potential afterhyperpolarization, which increases the spontaneous firing rate without affecting the resting membrane potential. Together, these results demonstrate a crucial link between the molecular circadian clock and electrical activity, providing examples of kinase regulation of electrical activity and the propagation of intracellular signals in neuronal networks.