March 27, 2012

Napping Neurons

What happens in your brain as you get tired? This is the question researchers wanted the answer too.  The study preformed showed that when the rats began to get tired some of their neurons began to nap. To keep the rats awake for a long period of time, researchers constantly gave the rat new interesting toys to play with.  Some of the neurons began to nap and as time went on these naps occurred more frequently.  To study the brain functions a electroencephalography was used which is the reading of electrical current along the scalp. The whole time the rat seemed awake, but his whole brain was not awake like he was.

I found this interesting because when you begin to get tired sometimes you do not pay attention to what you are doing, which can lead to mistakes or forgetting to do something.  The neurons napping can be an explanation of why this happens.  It is also interesting that the overall behavior of the mice did not change as time when on.  The brain is not affected as a whole when these neurons are napping.  Maybe this can lead to further knowledge on how the brain develops and why sleep is needed.


chellemohasin said...

I remember learning that sleep is essential to survival. maybe that has to do with these neurons functioning?

Fariha said...

That's probably why sometimes even though my body's awake or capable of doing things I can't think straight; cause at that point part of my brain is already asleep! Good to know..