BBC has one good reason to get a good night’s sleep tonight – because sleep boosts the number of healthy brain cells in yer head:
Sleep ramps up the production of cells that go on to make an insulating material known as myelin which protects our brain’s circuitry.
The findings, so far in mice, could lead to insights about sleep’s role in brain repair and growth as well as the disease MS, says the Wisconsin team.
The work is in the Journal of Neuroscience.
Dr Chiara Cirelli and colleagues from the University of Wisconsin found that the production rate of the myelin making cells, immature oligodendrocytes, doubled as mice slept.
The researchers say their findings suggest that sleep loss might aggravate some symptoms of multiple sclerosis (MS), a disease that damages myelin.
Her team is also interested in testing whether lack of sleep, especially during adolescence, may have long-term consequences for the brain.