A new study points to the potential antioxidant benefits of sleep and the damage that sleep can cause. Researchers looked at the low fruit fly to understand the role of sleep in health and found that fruit flies with a mutation leading to short sleep times are sensitive to oxidative stress.
The study was published in the journal this week PLOS Biologywhere researchers at Columbia University describe in detail the negative health effects of flies that have not got enough sleep. According to the study, these mutant fruit flies are sensitive to acute oxidative stress, suggesting that sleep itself may play an antioxidant role.
Sleep is essential and no living thing can live without it for a long time. However, sleep deprivation has become a chronic problem in society for a combination of reasons, including everything from overly hectic working hours to the disruptive effects of artificial light. Lack of sleep has been linked to various health conditions such as high blood pressure, but many questions remain.
The Drosophila Fruit fly has a mutation that leads to short sleep times; Living things suffer because of their lack of sleep, at least when it comes to oxidative stress. Conversely, sleeping helps the body combat oxidative stress.
The study also found that over-expressed antioxidant genes reduce oxidative stress while reducing sleep duration. Researchers point to oxidative stress as something that might induce sleep, which then fights the problem. All of this suggests a lack of sleep that may increase a person's sensitivity to oxidative stress, paving the way for diseases that are believed to result, at least in part, from them.