Just one night of poor sleep can boost Alzheimer’s proteins | Science News

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Just one night of poor sleep can boost Alzheimer’s proteins

Amyloid-beta levels rose in healthy adults with interrupted slow-wave Zs

4:15pm, July 10, 2017
sleeping woman

SLEEP DEEP  Slow-wave sleep, the deepest stage of sleep, may keep the brain from accumulating proteins that can lead to Alzheimer’s.

How well, not how much, people sleep may affect Alzheimer’s disease risk.

Healthy adults built up Alzheimer’s-associated proteins in their cerebral spinal fluid when prevented from getting slow-wave sleep, the deepest stage of sleep, researchers report July 10 in Brain. Just one night of deep-sleep disruption was enough to increase the amount of amyloid-beta, a protein that clumps into brain cell‒killing plaques in people with Alzheimer’s. People in the study who slept poorly for a week also had more of a protein called tau in their spinal fluid than they did when well rested. Tau snarls itself into tangles inside brain cells of people with the disease.

These findings support a growing body of evidence that lack of Zs is linked to Alzheimer’s and other neurodegenerative diseases. Specifically, “this suggests that there’s something special

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