Sleep is the best medicine?

Sleep is often the best medicine, don’t know the vernacular. German researchers are sure that it supports the immune system. In a recent study they have found that sleep supports the work of certain immune cells, called T-cells. “Just Lie down is also good, but Sleep is better,” says Tanya Long from the clinic for rheumatology and clinical immunology at the University of Lübeck. Together with Stoyan Dimitrov and Luciana Besedovsky of the University of Tübingen has led the study, which was published in the journal “Journal of Experimental Medicine”.

Acute lack of sleep arrester, however, the work of the T-cells. Already three hours of sleep per night can affect little the immune system. “The study shows a path on how to sleep can take on the function of T-cells positive influence,” says immunologist Rainer Straub, University hospital Regensburg, who was not involved in the study.

The T-cells are key players in the immune system. If you recognize a pathogen-infected cell, to activate the specific receptors, called Integrins, with which you capture your target and destroy.

The research team had taken ten women and five men of multiple blood – during the day, at night and during a night with sleep deprivation. The number of study participants was relatively small, but to deliver information on fundamental processes in the human body, the researchers argue.

Seven to eight hours of sleep

A result: The blood was collected from Sleeping at two o’clock at night, contained a high quantity of activated receptors, with those of T cells, each specific to the affected part of the body of capers cells. Blood was collected at the same time in the case of sleep deprivation, which contained much less active Integrins.

“Our results show that a few hours of sleep loss sufficient to the adhesion ability of specialized T-reduced cells,” the researchers write. During the day, and sleep deprivation hormones such as adrenaline and Prostaglandin are active.

That sleep affects the immune system, had also shown previous studies. According to a 2009 study lack of sleep increases the common cold risk. Researchers had 153 volunteers nasal drops with common cold viruses. In the group of people who slept less than seven hours were cold then, three times more than in the group with at least eight hours of sleep. The feeling to be well rested, played no role.