Author Topic: Sleep may help clear brain for new learning!!!  (Read 3296 times)

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Offline Abbas Bubakar El-ta'alu

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Sleep may help clear brain for new learning!!!
« on: April 07, 2009, 04:59:01 AM »
                                      Over to you, our beloved African pedagoues!!!
          A new theory about sleep's benefits for the brain gets a boost from fruit flies in the journal Science. Researchers at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis found evidence that sleep, already recognized as a promoter of long-term memories, also helps clear room in the brain for new learning.
          Many aspects of fly sleep are similar to human sleep; for example, flies and humans deprived of sleep one day will try to make up for the loss by sleeping more the next day. Because the human brain is much more complex, Shaw uses the flies as models for answering questions about sleep and memory.
Sleep is a recognized promoter of learning, but three years ago Shaw turned that association around and revealed that learning increases the need for sleep in the fruit fly. In a 2006 paper in Science, he and his colleagues found that two separate scenarios, each of which gave the fruit fly's brain a workout, increased the need for sleep.
          The first scenario was inspired by human research linking an enriched environment to improved memory and other brain functions. Scientists found that flies raised in an enhanced social environment—a test tube full of other flies—slept approximately 2-3 hours longer than flies raised in isolation.

Reference:
Jeffrey M. Donlea, Narendrakumar Ramanan, and Paul J. Shaw. Use-Dependent Plasticity in Clock Neurons Regulates Sleep Need in Drosophila. Science, 2009; 324 (5923): 105 DOI: 10.1126/science.1166657


« Last Edit: April 07, 2009, 05:15:31 AM by Abbas Bubakar El-ta'alu »
"It is not the strongest species that survive nor the most intelligent, but the ones that are more responsive to change"
                               ~ Charles Darwin ~

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