Scientists from the University of California, Berkeley found that sleep patterns can predict the accumulation of Alzheimer’s pathology proteins later in life.
These findings could lead to new sleep-based early diagnosis and prevention measures in the treatment of Alzheimer’s disease.
The research is published in JNeurosci and was conducted by Matthew P. Walker et al.
Alzheimer’s disease is associated with disrupted sleep and the accumulation of tau and proteins in the brain, which can emerge long before characteristic memory impairments appear.
Two types of hippocampal sleep waves, slow oscillations, and sleep spindles, are synced in young individuals but have been shown to become uncoordinated in old age.
In the study, researchers found a decrease in slow oscillations/sleep spindle synchronization was associated with higher tau, while reduced slow-wave-activity amplitude was associated with higher β-amyloid levels.
They also found that a decrease in sleep quantity throughout aging, from the 50s through 70s, was linked to higher levels of β-amyloid and tau later in life.
This means that changes in brain activity during sleep and sleep quantity during these time frames could serve as a warning sign for Alzheimer’s disease, allowing for early preventive care.
If you care about sleep, please read studies about the noise that could boost your memory function and improve deep sleep, and avoid these 3 things in your dinner to sleep better tonight.
For more information about sleep, please see recent studies about a better way to treat insomnia and sleep apnea, and results showing this sleeping pill can prevent kidney damage in obesity with diabetes.
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