Nasal Spray Before Bed Found To Help Sleeper Retain More Memories

October 6, 2009

Germany (ChattahBox) – Researchers have found that a nasal spray inhaled before a good night’s sleep will allow people to more easily retain memories, giving a possible study tool for students.

The spray is meant to stimulate interleukin-6 (IL-6), which is naturally occurring in the body. If inhaled through the nose during REM, it allows people to retain emotional and procedural memories through sleep, making it easier to recall during waking hours.

The study, conducted at the University of Lubeck, Germany, was simple: they took 17 young men with no known mental or memory problems, and had them sleep at the lab.

Giving them a short story to read before bed, some would be given a dose of the nasal spray, and some would not.

In the morning, the young men were asked to write down as many words as they could remember from the night before. Those with the spray remembered more than those without.

“Here, we provide the first evidence that the immunoregulatory signal relating to the immune system, interleukin-6 plays, a beneficial role in sleep-dependent formation of long-term memory in humans,” the study’s co-author, Lisa Marshall, was quoted by The Telegraph.

The study has been published in the FASEB journal.



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