Sound sleep ''key to vaccine protection''
Getting the proper amount of sleep has been highlighted as a
key requisite for the safe delivery of vaccinations, new research
According to research carried out by a scientist at the University
of California - San Francisco (UCSF) and published in the journal
Sleep, volunteers were given a vaccination for the hepatitis B
virus and were then subjected to different sleep patterns to
highlight the impact of sleep on these treatments.
In the group who were allowed six hours of sleep or fewer per
night, the vaccination was shown to have been ineffective and these
people were still vulnerable to contracting the virus despite their
Two doses of the vaccine were administered over the course of a
month, with the antibodies in the blood of the subjects measured
after each to determine whether a "clinically protective response"
had been achieved.
Lead author Dr Aric Prather, a clinical health psychologist at
UCSF, said: "With the emergence of our 24-hour lifestyle, longer
working hours, and the rise in the use of technology, chronic sleep
deprivation has become a way of life for many.
"These findings should help raise awareness in the public health
community about the clear connection between sleep and
Meanwhile, research completed by scientists at Ohio State
University and published in the journal Molecular Psychiatry
recently showed sleeping with low levels of light in the background
could have a significant detrimental impact on the quality of rest
achieved by people.
The study showed that in animals, when they were subjected to
chronic dim light conditions over a three-week period, the subjects
began to demonstrate signs of lethargy and depression.
Tracy Bedrosian, lead author of the study and doctoral student in
neuroscience at the university, said: "The good news is that people
who stay up late in front of the television and computer may be
able to undo some of the harmful effects just by going back to a
regular light-dark cycle."
Posted by Michael Ewing