Cerebrospinal fluid “washes” the brain while we sleep

For the first time in the history of modern medicine, scientists have been able to understand how cerebrospinal fluid circulates in the human brain during sleep. The discovery of the scientists from Boston University will help not only to better understand the physiology, but also to learn about what makes some neurological and psychiatric disorders.

Our Central nervous system is still full of mysteries

What is cerebrospinal fluid

In simple words, the cerebrospinal fluid (or CSF) is the fluid constantly circulates in the ventricles of the brain, and partly in the spinal cord, which is connected with the head litwareproposal ways. She maintains constant intracranial pressure and carries out the exchange of useful substances between blood and the brain.

A study published in the journal Science, illustrates that the circulation of the cerebrospinal fluid during sleep is closely linked with brain activity, brain waves and blood flow. And, interestingly, the most intensively these processes occur during sleep.

After a person falls asleep, his neurons “rest”, — says associate Professor of biomedical engineering, Boston University Laura Lewis. Following this, the blood begins to leave some areas of the brain and make space for the cerebrospinal fluid that “washes” the brain rhythmic pulses, synchronized with the activity of brain waves.

Scientists believe that this discovery will lead to the understanding of a number of neurological and psychological disorders that are frequently associated with sleep disorders, including autism and Alzheimer’s disease.

Collaboration of brain waves and blood flow and cerebrospinal fluid may also give an idea about different age-related disorders. Earlier studies have shown that the flow of cerebrospinal fluid and brain wave activity help to clean up toxic products from the brain tissue. In particular, a number of proteins, including those that accumulate and cause the development of Alzheimer’s disease.

Moreover, as people age, their brain starts to generate fewer slow waves. In turn, this can affect blood flow to the brain and reduce the circulation of cerebrospinal fluid during sleep, which leads to the accumulation of toxic proteins and loss of memory. Although scholars typically assess these processes separately, it now seems that they are very closely related. We regularly monitor research in this area, so if you are interested in this topic, then follow us on Telegram, so that nothing is missed.

For further study of how aging can affect the flow of blood and cerebrospinal fluid during sleep, experts plan to attract older people for their next research, as many aspects relating to the new discoveries, still remains a mystery. In particular, at the moment it is not clear how exactly our brain waves, blood flow and circulation of cerebrospinal fluid koordiniruyutsya so perfect with each other.

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One explanation may be that when neurons go into a state of sleep, they do not require as much oxygen as during wakefulness. So the blood leaving the brain. When the blood is running out, the pressure in the brain drops, and cerebrospinal fluid rushes to “vacant place” in order to maintain the pressure at a safe level. However, the effect of brain waves still do not fit into this model. This relationship, scientists have to discover.

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