Navigation Links
Why we could all do with a siesta

The Spaniards may have been right all along ?a siesta after a hearty lunch is natural, new research suggests.

Scientists at The University of Manchester have for the first time uncovered how brain cells or 'neurons' that keep us alert become turned off after we eat.

The findings ?published in the scientific journal Neuron this week ?have implications for treating obesity and eating disorders as well as understanding levels of consciousness.

"It has been known for a while that people and animals can become sleepy and less active after a meal, but brain signals responsible for this were poorly understood," said Dr Denis Burdakov, the lead researcher based in Manchester's Faculty of Life Sciences.

"We have pinpointed how glucose ?the sugar in food ?can stop brain cells from producing signals that keep us awake.

Dr Burdakov's research has shown exactly how glucose blocks or 'inhibits' neurons that make orexins ?tiny proteins that are vital for normal regulation of our state of consciousness.

"These cells are critical for responding to the ever-changing body-energy state with finely orchestrated changes in arousal, food seeking, hormone release and metabolic rate to ensure that the brain always has adequate glucose."

Malfunction of orexin neurons can lead to narcolepsy, where sufferers cannot stay awake, and obesity; there is also evidence that orexin neurons play a role in learning, reward-seeking and addiction.

"We have identified the pore in the membrane of orexin-producing cells that is responsible for the inhibiting effect of glucose.

"This previously unknown mechanism is so sensitive it can detect minute changes in glucose levels ?the type that occurs between meals for example.

"This may well provide an explanation for after-meal tiredness and why it is difficult to sleep when hungry.

"Now we know how glucose stops orexin neurons 'firing', we have a better understanding of what m ay occur in disorders of sleep and body weight.

"This research perhaps sheds light on why our European friends are so fond of their siestas."


'"/>

Source:University of Manchester


Related biology news :

1. Protein discovery could unlock the secret to better TB treatment
2. Tiny particles could solve billion-dollar problem
3. First atlas of key brain genes could speed research on cancer, neurological diseases
4. Discovery of key proteins shape could lead to improved bacterial pneumonia vaccine
5. A comprehensive response to HIV could prevent 10 million AIDS deaths in Africa by 2020
6. How the environment could be damaging mens reproductive health
7. Dead zone area in Gulf could be increasing, researchers say
8. Growth in biomass could put US on road to energy independence
9. Nano-bumps could help repair clogged blood vessels
10. Researchers develop assay that could be applied to drug screening
11. Currents could disrupt ocean food chain
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:


(Date:3/24/2017)... The Controller General of Immigration from Maldives Mr. ... have received the prestigious international IAIR Award for the most innovative ... ... Maldives Immigration ... Algeen (small picture on the right) have received the IAIR award for ...
(Date:3/22/2017)... VILNIUS, Lithuania , March 21, 2017 /PRNewswire/ ... identification and object recognition technologies, today announced the ... development kit (SDK), which provides improved facial recognition ... safety cameras on a single computer. The new ... algorithms to improve accuracy, and it utilizes a ...
(Date:3/20/2017)... -- PMD Healthcare announces the release of its new ... (WMS), a remote, real-time lung health monitoring and management ... a Medical Device, Digital Health, and Chronic Care Management ... solutions that empower people to improve their healthcare and ... the first ever personal spirometer, Spiro PD, which was ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:6/22/2017)... (PRWEB) , ... June 21, 2017 , ... ... attracting and hiring top executive talent in the life sciences industry, today announces ... Manufacturing company. The partnership takes full advantage of Beaker’s expertise in executive ...
(Date:6/22/2017)... ... June 22, 2017 , ... For the ... has produced a Spotlight series on “Cell Therapy Regulation” for its ... leading experts on the unique regulatory challenges of stem cell medical research. , ...
(Date:6/20/2017)... CT (PRWEB) , ... June 20, 2017 , ... ... today announced that the CTNext board of directors has formed a Higher Education ... a working group composed of institution presidents and other high-ranking representatives from 35 ...
(Date:6/20/2017)... ... 20, 2017 , ... Do More with OHAUS , With the launch of ... in the weighing industry, to extending its expertise across the entire laboratory to a ... and more, allowing for its customers to 'Do More' in the lab. ...
Breaking Biology Technology: