Scientists have discovered why boredom makes a person to fall asleep

© Fotolia / milatasСпящий manScientists have discovered why boredom makes a person to fall asleep© Fotolia / milatas

Japanese neuroscientists found the brain of mice a special section, which causes the animal to fall asleep in if he was bored, and learned to manipulate his work, according to a paper published in the journal Nature Communications.

«All living creatures that have nervous system, sleep in one form or another. In addition to the cycle of day and night, the desire to sleep is influenced by other things such as emotions and thoughts. For example, people drive away the sleep at the time when you need to be careful, but they unsuccessfully fight the urge to sleep at the time when they are bored. So far, we didn’t know what was connected this desire,» said Oishi yo (Yo Oishi) from the University of Tsukuba (Japan).

Today scientists believe, the brain and hormonal system of humans and all other animals, constantly producing two types of signals – one of them causes the body to sleep and the other does not allow him to sleep. Fluctuations in the power of these signals generated by diurnal rhythms, forcing us to fall asleep at night and Wake up in the morning, and violations in their work can lead to the development of insomnia or narcolepsy.

According to AISI, no one had tried to understand how the various emotional reactions such as excitement or boredom, affect the nature of sleep and the probability of its occurrence. Japanese neuroscientists and their Japanese colleagues tried to find out why boredom makes us fall asleep watching the brain work of volunteers and experimenting on mice.

As noted by scholars, when a person falls asleep, their body begins to accumulate adenosine is one of the «building blocks» of DNA, simultaneously plays the role of one of the signaling molecules that transmit information between brain cells. Oishi and his colleagues suggested that the substance may be a kind of signal to sleep, and checked what will happen if I enter it directly into the brain of rodents.

It turned out that even relatively small doses of adenosine almost instantly made the mouse go to sleep and dive into the deeper stages of sleep that are identical in all its properties to its natural counterpart. Studying how brain cells respond to this hormone, Chinese and Japanese scientists have found a special area in the so-called nucleus accumbens, the «pleasure center» of the brain that is activated when the onset of sleep and the introduction of adenosine in the body.

Opening these cells, Oishi and his colleagues introduced a special virus that allows you to enable or disable them using flash of blue light. Activation of these cells resulted in an immediate «turn off» of mice even in a brightly lit room, and locking of their work, on the contrary, deprive rodents of sleep even in those hours when they usually leave to sleep.

Interestingly, the activity of these cells declined in a time when scientists were released into the cage of another mouse of the opposite sex, toys or chocolate. As a result, these mice slept less than their relatives in the «boring» cages, where such entertainments were not. This, according to Oishi and his colleagues, explains how and why a person falls asleep at a time when it becomes boring to listen to a lecture or watching a movie.

The development of drugs acting on these cells, will help students not only to fall asleep on pairs, but also give a chance to many people suffering from insomnia or narcolepsy, to start to lead a normal life.