Study Suggests Sleep Detoxes the Brain

A good night’s rest may literally clear the mind. Using mice, researchers showed for the first time that the space between brain cells may increase during sleep, allowing the brain to flush out toxins that build up during waking hours. These results suggest a new role for sleep in health and disease. The study was funded by the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS), part of the NIH.

Dye flow through the brain of a sleeping mouse

NIH Researchers Implicate Unique Cell Type in Multiple Sclerosis

Researchers at the National Institutes of Health have found evidence that a unique type of immune cell contributes to multiple sclerosis (MS). Their discovery helps define the effects of one of the newest drugs under investigation for treating MS — daclizumab — and could lead to a new class of drugs for treating MS and other autoimmune disorders.


New Brain Implant Fuel Cell Runs On Sugar

MIT researchers have developed a new fuel cell that could be used to power brain implants in coming years [1]. Just like human cells, the fuel cells run on glucose, which is the most common sugar in nature and in the human body. Human cells derive energy from glucose through a process called oxidation — a part of metabolism — that takes electrons from the glucose and passes those electrons from enzyme to enzyme in the cell, generating the energy molecule adenosine triphosphate (ATP).

Fuel cell