360° Coverage : Brain cleans itself during sleep: Experts

Brain cleans itself during sleep: Experts

Washington, Oct 18 (IANS) The brain cleans itself of toxic metabolic by-products while one is asleep and this cleansing could be the basic purpose behind the state of rest, say experts.

Oct 18 2013, 5:47am CDT | by IANS

Brain cleans itself during sleep: Experts
Photo Credit: , Getty Images

Washington, Oct 18 — The brain cleans itself of toxic metabolic by-products while one is asleep and this cleansing could be the basic purpose behind the state of rest, say experts.

The brain's unique method of waste removal, dubbed the glymphatic system, is highly active during sleep, cleaning toxins responsible for Alzheimer's disease and other neurological disorders, revealed the US journal Science.

Researchers from the University of Rochester, New York, also found that during sleep the brain's cells reduce in size, allowing waste to be removed more effectively, Xinhua reported.

"This study shows that the brain has different functions when asleep and awake," said Maiken Nedergaard from the University of Rochester Medical Center.

Recent findings have also shown that sleep can help store and consolidate memories.

The glymphatic system acts like a plumbing system that piggybacks on the brain's blood vessels and pumps cerebral spinal fluid (CSF) through its tissues, flushing waste back into the circulatory system, the researchers said.

The glymphatic system is a waste clearance pathway in the central nervous system (CNS) of mammals.

Researchers speculated that the glymphatic system may be more active during sleep and carried series of experiments on mice by tracking the movements of red and green dye throughout the brain. They found that large amounts of CSF flowed into the brain of the mice during sleep, but not when they were awake.

The glymphatic system was almost 10-fold more active in them during sleep, researchers said.

"These findings have significant implications for treating disease like Alzheimer's," said Nedergaard.

Amyloid, a protein implicated in Alzheimer's disease, is a waste product removed by the system during sleep.

"Understanding how and when brain activates the glymphatic system and clears waste is a critical first step in efforts to potentially modulate the system and make it work more efficiently," he said.

IANS

Source: IANS

 
 
 

blog comments powered by Disqus

Latest stories

Apple Pay has successful Black Friday
Apple Pay has successful Black Friday
Payment system gearing up for Christmas
 
 
Apple to stop iPhone 5C production
Apple to stop iPhone 5C production
Middle of 2015 is target date
 
 
Apple tops Android on Black Friday
Apple tops Android on Black Friday
iOS accounts for more online mobile sales
 
 
All Cyber Monday Sales
All Cyber Monday Sales
Cyber Monday 2014 is here and all sales and deals are available now. Find below the best Cyber Monday Sales events.
 
 
 

Latest from the Network

Australian researcher discovers first artwork by early human
Sydney, Dec 4 (IANS) An Australian researcher has discovered what is believed to be the first artwork created by a human. The simple zigzag pattern found on a fossilized shell from the Indonesian island of Java has...
Read more on Celebrity Balla
 
Insects compete with rats to clear garbage
New York, Dec 4 (IANS) Insects play a very important role in cleaning up cities and they compete with other pests like rats and pigeons in their endeavour, a study has said. Scientists sampled arthropods - such as...
Read more on Business Balla
 
School headmaster shot dead in Pakistan
Islamabad, Dec 4 (IANS) Unidentified gunmen Thursday killed the headmaster of a private school in Pakistan's Balochistan province. Police officials said the armed men opened fire at the vehicle of Zahid Ali,...
Read more on Politics Balla
 
Four more bodies recovered from sunken South Korean ship
Seoul, Dec 4 (IANS) Four more bodies were recovered Thursday from a sunken South Korean fishing ship in the Bering Sea, the foreign ministry here said. This increased the toll to 16, including six South Koreans and 10...
Read more on Politics Balla
 
Lesbian couple asked to desist in London restaurant
London, Dec 4 (IANS) A lesbian couple in a London restaurant was asked to desist by a staff member, who asked them to "stop what you are doing". Lydia Cawson, 29, said that she and her girlfriend were asked by a staff...
Read more on Politics Balla
 
Oxford Dictionaries to add 1,000 new words
London, Dec 4 (IANS) 'Mamil' (middle-aged man in Lycra), 'silvertail' (a person who is socially prominent or who displays social aspirations) and 'crony capitalism' are among the 1,000 new words to be added to...
Read more on Celebrity Balla
 
Oceans play key role in global 'warming hiatus'
London, Dec 4 (IANS) Increased heat uptake across three oceans - North Atlantic, the Southern Ocean and Equatorial Pacific Ocean - is the likely cause of the 'warming hiatus' -- the current decade-long slowdown in...
Read more on Politics Balla
 
Novel imaging to identify if TB drugs are working
Washington, Dec 4 (IANS) Tuberculosis patients who are not cured of the infection can develop multi-drug resistant TB and have to take as many as six drugs for two years. Now, researchers at University of Pittsburgh...
Read more on Business Balla
 
PM makes first appointment to High Court of Australia
Canberra, Dec 4 (IANS) Prime Minister Tony Abbott's government Thursday appointed former Victorian Supreme Court judge Geoffrey Nettle as the next Justice of the High Court of Australia. Attorney General George...
Read more on Politics Balla
 
18 suspected militants killed in Pakistan airstrikes
Islamabad, Dec 4 (IANS) At least 18 suspected militants were killed Thursday in airstrikes conducted by Pakistan Air Force fighter jets in North Waziristan. According to officials, the airstrikes were conducted in...
Read more on Politics Balla