Dim light at night worsens mood, dendritic spines in hippocampus

OSU.edu – Exposure to even dim light at night is enough to cause physical changes in the brains of hamsters that may be associated with depressed mood, a new study shows. Researchers found that female Siberian hamsters exposed to dim light every night for eight weeks showed significant changes in a part of the brain called the hippocampus. This […]

Inadequate sleep, poor sleep increase inflammation, CRP, IL-6

People who have poor sleep or do not get enough sleep have higher levels of inflammatory markers C-reactive protein, IL-6, and fibrinogen, indicating increased inflammation in their bodies, researchers have found. Inflammation is a risk factor for heart disease and stroke. Data from a recent study were presented Sunday, November 14, 2010 at the American Heart Association Scientific Sessions in Chicago by Alanna Morris, […]

Sleep apnea linked to gray matter damage, cognitive deficits

Patients with obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) may blame their daytime difficulties on simple sleepiness, but new research suggests that their brains may be to blame. Specifically, their cognitive challenges may be caused by structural deficits in gray matter, brought on by the intermittent oxygen deprivation that comes with OSA. The good news is that these deficits may be partially or […]

Taking sleeping pills linked to 36 percent higher mortality risk

ULaval.ca – Taking sleeping pills or medications to treat anxiety increases mortality risk by 36 percent, according to a study conducted by Geneviève Belleville, a professor at Université Laval’s School of Psychology. The details of this study are published in the latest edition of the Canadian Journal of Psychiatry. Dr. Belleville arrived at these results through […]

Sleep reorganizes memories, helps creativity

PsychologicalScience.org – As humans, we spend about a third of our lives asleep. So there must be a point to it, right? Scientists have found that sleep helps consolidate memories, fixing them in the brain so we can retrieve them later. Now, new research is showing that sleep also seems to reorganize memories, picking out the emotional details […]

Sleep deprivation changes brain gene expression, cognition, emotional regulation

AllenInstitute.org – The most systematic study to date of the effects of sleep deprivation on gene expression in the brain have been described by researchers at the Allen Institute for Brain Science and SRI International. The findings, published in Frontiers in Neuroscience, have implications for improving the understanding and management of the adverse effects of sleep deprivation on brain function. […]

Sleep loss lowers fat loss when dieting

UCHospitals.edu – Cutting back on sleep or losing sleep reduces the benefits of dieting, according to a study published October 5, 2010 in the Annals of Internal Medicine. When dieters in the study got a full night’s sleep, they lost the same amount of weight as when they slept less. When dieters got adequate sleep, however, more than half […]

Biological clock and diabetes linked through cryptochrome

UCSD.edu – Biologists have found that a key protein that regulates the biological clocks of mammals also regulates glucose production in the liver and that altering the levels of this protein can improve the health of diabetic mice. Their discovery, detailed in the advanced online publication of the journal Nature Medicine, provides an entirely new biochemical […]

How much sleep gives women longest life span?

UCSD.edu – A new sleep study, derived from novel sleep research conducted by University of California, San Diego researchers 14 years earlier, suggests that the secret to a long life may come with just enough sleep. Less than five hours a night is probably not enough; eight hours is probably too much – according to women’s health data. […]