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Thread: Immune system and sleep?

  1. #1 Immune system and sleep? 
    Forum Cosmic Wizard icewendigo's Avatar
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    Is the immune system boosted during sleep and suppressed by lack of sleep?


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  3. #2  
    Forum Bachelors Degree
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    Hi Icewendigo,

    Yes, the following papers suggest that the immune system and sleep are intimately linked, with sleep proving beneficial in the immune system's fight against pathogens.

    It is a common belief that we are more susceptible to infections when deprived of sleep. Consistent with this, there is increasing evidence that sleep deprivation has detrimental effects on the immune response, indicating that sleep should be considered a vital part of the immune system and that there is a reciprocal relationship between sleep and immunity. This relationship is important because, over recent decades, there has been a documented decrease in the mean duration and quality of sleep in the population. The concept that lack of sleep might be compromising immunity in the population has far-reaching public-health implications for both individuals and society.
    Nature Reviews Immunology 4, 457-467 (June 2004) | doi:10.1038/nri1369
    Sick and tired: does sleep have a vital role in the immune system?
    Penelope A. Bryant, John Trinder & Nigel Curtis

    Good sleep is necessary for physical and mental health. For example, sleep loss impairs immune function, and sleep is altered during infection. Immune signalling molecules are present in the healthy brain, where they interact with neurochemical systems to contribute to the regulation of normal sleep. Animal studies have shown that interactions between immune signalling molecules (such as the cytokine interleukin 1) and brain neurochemical systems (such as the serotonin system) are amplified during infection, indicating that these interactions might underlie the changes in sleep that occur during infection. Why should the immune system cause us to sleep differently when we are sick? We propose that the alterations in sleep architecture during infection are exquisitely tailored to support the generation of fever, which in turn imparts survival value.
    Nature Reviews Neuroscience10, 199-210(March 2009) | doi:10.1038/nrn2576
    How (and why) the immune system makes us sleepLuca Imeri & Mark R. Opp

    Tumor necrosis factor, an essential mediator of inflammation, inhibits degradation of the molecular switch RGS7 and may lead to the neurological changes that occur during inflammation (page 913).
    Nature Medicine 5, 877 - 879 (1999) doi:10.1038/11315
    How the immune system puts the brain to sleep
    Rainer H. Straub & Daniela N. Männel

    Unfortunately, I am unable to access the full texts so cannot check out the data, however they made it into Nature so presumably the data are reliable!

    Best wishes,

    Tri~






    Last edited by tridimity; February 25th, 2012 at 04:19 AM. Reason: formatting went awry
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