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Short-Term Sleep Deprivation: Impact on Systemic Redox Metabolites and Epigenetic Status

Wednesday, April 26th 2023 10:00am 5 min read
Dr. Jessica Peatross @drjessmd

Hospitalist & top functional MD who gets to the root cause. Stealth infection & environmental toxicity keynote speaker.

Sleep is an essential physiological process required for the proper functioning of the human body. Sleep deprivation, even for short periods, has been linked to various adverse health outcomes, including cognitive impairment, immune dysfunction, and metabolic disturbances (Alhola & Polo-Kantola, 2007). This article will explore the consequences of short-term sleep deprivation on systemic redox metabolites and epigenetic status. We will review the latest findings from peer-reviewed studies, highlighting the impact of sleep deprivation on these molecular pathways and their potential implications for human health.

Sleep deprivation and systemic redox metabolites

Oxidative stress and sleep deprivation

Oxidative stress, an imbalance between the production of reactive oxygen species (ROS) and the ability of the body to detoxify and repair the resulting damage, has been implicated in various chronic diseases (Sies, 2015). Short-term sleep deprivation can exacerbate oxidative stress by increasing ROS production and decreasing antioxidant capacity (Gulec et al., 2012).

Altered redox metabolites in sleep-deprived individuals

A study by Gulec et al. (2012) found that short-term sleep deprivation leads to a decrease in systemic redox metabolites, including glutathione (GSH), superoxide dismutase (SOD), and catalase (CAT). These changes were accompanied by increased lipid peroxidation, an indicator of oxidative stress. Similarly, a study by Kim et al. (2017) demonstrated that total antioxidant capacity was reduced in sleep-deprived participants, along with increased levels of malondialdehyde, another marker of oxidative stress.

Potential health consequences of altered redox metabolites

Decreased levels of systemic redox metabolites and increased oxidative stress may contribute to the development of various health problems associated with sleep deprivation, such as cardiovascular disease (CVD), neurodegenerative disorders, and cancer (Ramanathan & Gulyani, 2010; Ramanathan et al., 2010).

Sleep deprivation and epigenetic status

Epigenetic modifications and sleep deprivation

Epigenetics refers to heritable changes in gene expression that occur without alterations in the DNA sequence (Berger et al., 2009). Sleep deprivation has been found to cause changes in several epigenetic marks, including DNA methylation and histone modifications (Cedernaes et al., 2015; Massart et al., 2014).

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