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Sleeping Helps Clearing the DNA Damaged While You are Awake

We always find excuses to get some more hours of sleep. Now even the scientists of Bar-Illan University in Israel have published a study in Nature Communications that insists on sleeping some more! According to the researchers, the DNA damage accumulated during waking hours gets cleared off during the sleep. They used 3D time-lapse imaging techniques on live zebrafish and observed that single neurons require sleep for nuclear maintenance. When we are awake, due to low chromosome dynamics, the DNA damage caused due to multiple reasons like radiation, oxidative stress etc., get accumulated within the cells and may reach alarming levels. Sleep increases the chromosome dynamics and makes the DNA damage low. The researchers were particularly surprised to find that chromosomes are more active at night, when the body rests. In fact, this increased activity enables the efficiency of the repair to DNA damage. The results establish chromosome dynamics as a potential marker for defining single sleeping cells.

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