Poor sleep may affect Alzheimer’s disease risk. According to some researchers healthy adults built up Alzheimer’s-associated proteins in their cerebral spinal fluid when prevented from getting slow-wave sleep, the deepest stage of sleep. Just a night of deep-sleep disruption was enough to increase the amount of amyloid-beta, a protein that clumps into brain cell‒killing plaques in people with Alzheimer’s. According to the studies people who slept poorly for a week also had more of a protein called tau in their spinal fluid than they did when well rested. The findings support a growing body of evidence that lack of Zs is linked to Alzheimer’s and other neurodegenerative diseases. According to them people with Alzheimer’s are notoriously poor sleepers, but scientists aren’t sure if that is a cause or a consequence of the disease. Animal and human studies suggest the problem goes both ways. People who lacks from sleeping may make people more prone to brain disorders. People who have the problems with their brain functionality make it hard to sleep. According to David Holtzman of Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis speculated that lower levels of brain cell activity during deep sleep would produce less A-beta, tau and other proteins than other stages of sleep or wakefulness. To conduct the research Holtzman and with his colleague Physician Yo-El Ju recruited 17 volunteers, all healthy adults between ages 35 and 65, who had no sleep disorders. Volunteers wore activity monitors to track their sleep at home and visited the sleep lab at least twice. The volunteers slept normally while wearing headphones. On the other visit, researchers played beeps through headphones whenever the volunteers were about to go into deep sleep. The slow beeps didn’t wake the people up but kept them from getting any slow-wave sleep. Volunteers slept just as much on the night when deep sleep was disrupted as they did on the night when no sound was played through the headphones. The research showed that the more deep sleep people missed out on, the higher their levels of A-beta in the morning. Tau levels didn’t budge because of just one night of slow-wave sleep disruption, but people whose activity monitors indicated they had slept poorly the week before the test also had higher levels of that protein. This study in humans is really an elegant experimental demonstration. Without proper deep sleep, brain cells continue to churn out, producing more A-beta and tau than a well-rested brain.
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