A new research released recently in the journal Nature Communications show a new & unexpected role of sleep. Bar-llan University’s researchers have explained the way sleep & sleep disruptions impact performance of brain, aging & several brain disorders.
With the help of three-dimensional time-lapse imaging methods in live zebrafish, researchers could define sleep in a single chromosome resolution & show. For the first time ever, it was shown that single neurons need sleep so as to execute maintenance of nuclear.
How Does DNA Damage Happen?
DNA destruction can take place due to several methods such as neuronal activity, radiation, and oxidative stress. DNA repair systems in every single cell rectify this damage. Present work exhibits that when the body is awake & chromosome dynamics are low, DNA damage constantly increases & can reach up to an unsafe stage.
Sleep’s function is to increase dynamics of chromosome & regulate DNA damage’s levels in every single neuron. Evidently, maintenance process of DNA is not sufficient when a person is awake & needs an offline sleep period with less activity of the brain for it to happen. Professor Lior Appelbaum said that its similar to potholes in the road. Roads gather wear & tear during daytime peak hours. It is suitable & effective to work on the potholes at night, when the traffic is less.
Findings of the Research
Professor Lior presumed that sleep combines & co-ordinates nuclear maintenance in single neurons. He along with his team worked on it to confirm the theory. Their findings were accomplished because of the features of zebrafish model. Due to their complete transparency and a brain which is like humans, Zebrafish are an ideal organism to study single cell in a live animal under physiological surroundings. With the help of a high resolution microscope, DNA’s movement & nuclear proteins in the cell, which exists in the fish can be studied when the fish are awake & sleeping.
Team of researchers were stunned to discover that the said chromosomes are particularly active at night, when the body is resting. However, it increased activity boosts the efficiency of repair to damage done to the DNA.
Professor concluded the research by stating that they have discovered a light link between chromosome dynamics, sleep, neuronal activity, DNA damage & repair with straight physiological relevance to the full organism. Sleep offers a chance to decrease DNA damage collected in the brain when the person is awake.