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  • 8/11/2010

Key to good night sleep discovered

key to good night sleep discovered

US researchers have discovered the mechanism through which individuals manage to sleep peacefully despite the sounds of telephones ringing, road and air traffic noises.

According to the study published in Current Biology, a process in the brain known as sleep spindles blocks out the effects of sound and other sensory information passing through the brain during sleep.

Sleep spindles are believed to be generated by the thalamus, the gateway of sensory information, including sound, to the brain. Individuals with the highest rates of spindles, therefore, are reported to be less likely to be woken by noises.

"Sleep spindles certainly help to block outside noise. There are other interpretations for this study, though, as those people with fewer spindles may simply be 'lighter sleepers' and more likely to wake up with the noise - hence less sleep and fewer spindles," said Jim Horne of the Sleep Research Centre at Loughborough University.

Scientists hope their findings would pave the way for the development of new strategies, drugs or electronic devices to overcome insomnia.

"Our study demonstrates this finding in humans, and takes it one step further: one can use the sleep spindle as a biomarker for predicting whether a person will have difficulty in noisy environments or not in the future," said lead researcher Jeffrey Ellenbogen of Harvard Medical School.

Source: presstv.ir


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