In a recent study about cancer, researchers were able to conclude that a poor night’s sleep affects our immune system. This, in turns, speeds up the growth of cancerous cells and worsens it.
The research, published in the Cancer Research journal, included experimenting on the mice. Two groups of mice participated in the experiment. One of these groups was routinely roused from their sleep every two minutes, with the help of a motorized brush.
The other group was left undisturbed and allowed to sleep at ease. Four weeks later, the researchers observed that the size of the tumors in the mice who had poor and interrupted sleep were twice the size of tumors in normally-sleeping mice.
The study directly reveals that poor sleep, and because of that a poor immune system, significantly ramps up the dangers of cancerous cells and their growth. David Gozal of University of Chicago Comer Children’s Hospital lead the study.
According to him, “It’s not the tumor, it’s the immune system. Fragmented sleep changes how the immune system deals with cancer in ways that make the disease more aggressive.”
However, he also says that the study hints at possible cure for such growth of cancer, “Toll-like receptor 4, a biological messenger, helps control activation of the innate immune system. It appears to be a lynchpin for the cancer-promoting effects of sleep loss. The effects of fragmented sleep that we focused on were not seen in mice that lacked this protein. This study offers biological plausibility to the epidemiological associations between perturbed sleep and cancer outcomes.”
Courtesy: Daily Mail