Written by Staff Writer
23 Jul, 2015 | 5:44 pm
A new research has shown that not sleeping for a night can alter the genes that control the biological clocks in cells throughout our body.
Reserachers at Sweden said that previous research had shown that our metabolism was negatively affected by sleep loss, and sleep loss has been linked to an increased risk of obesity and type 2 diabetes.
This also could affect everything from changes in our body temperature, appetite and even brain activity.
Molecular analyses of the collected tissue samples showed that the regulation and activity of clock genes was altered after one night of sleep loss. The activity of genes is regulated by a mechanism called epigenetics. This involves chemical alterations to the DNA molecule such as methyl groups – a process called methylation – which regulates how the genes are switched on or off. The researchers found that clock genes had increased numbers of such DNA marks after sleep loss. They also found that the expression of the genes, which is indicative of how much of the genes’ product is made, was altered.
For the study the researchers studied 15 healthy normal-weight men who on two separate occasions came to the lab for almost 2-night long stays.
A study of the tissue samples showed that the regulation and activity of clock genes was changed after one night of sleep loss.
Jonathan Cedernaes, lead author on the study claimed that their research was the first to directly show that epigenetic changes could occur after sleep loss in humans, but also in the important tissues.
It was interesting that the methylation of these genes could be altered so quickly, and that it could occur for these metabolically important clock genes, he continued.
The study is due to be published in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism.
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