Not Enough Sleep May Help Alzheimer’s Take Hold
In recent years, scientists have made small steps towards understanding the relationship between sleep and Alzheimer’s disease. Now, researchers from Oregon Health & Science University in Portland may soon illuminate the connection—they are launching the first experiment of its kind that will study a key process in the brains of sleeping humans, as NPR reports.
Disrupted sleep patterns have long been a common complaint for patients in the early stages of Alzheimer’s disease, sometimes decades before they develop cognitive problems or noticeable memory loss. The reason, researchers have discovered, is likely the buildup of beta amyloid plaque, a sticky amalgamation of proteins that collects in synapses and is characteristic of Alzheimer’s disease. A number of studies published in the last five years have found that people (and mice) with disrupted sleep patterns had more beta amyloid plaque in their brains.
Researchers are starting to get a sense for why this is the case—sleep maysweep toxins from the brain, preventing beta amyloid from collecting in synapses. But scientists are still not sure….Read More.
A TEAM OF RESEARCHERS PLANS TO FIGURE OUT WHY THIS HAPPENS