We have been discussing the nanotechnology and its uses for a while now. We wrote about DNA research, nanosponges, uses in therapy and other cool stuff. However, we kept one topic that is very interesting. Today, it is time to touch a realm of sleep and dreams. The science has been trying to learn about sleep for a long time now, and despite lots of research and plenty of scientists dedicating their careers to it, we still don’t know everything. In fact, not even close to knowing a lot. One thing is clear, however, that nanotechnology will help us understand it better and treat different types of sleep disorders.
While the scientists do not know the origins of the need of dreaming, we know that it is crucial for our mental health. That’s why psychologists dedicate so much time interpreting them as dreams can tell a lot about your mind. Nanotechnology can potentially allow us to easily access the regions of the brain that are responsible for dreaming and closely monitor them from inside. This will give us ability to learn more about sleep and treat variety of disorders. This is what the scientists at University of Michigan are currently trying. While the research is at the early phase and things are not quite clear yet, we are certain that nanotechnilogy sooner or later will help us understand more about one of the most mysterious biological process inside our bodies.
Another medical application of nanotechnology deals with memory. More specifically, solving memory loss with it during the sleep. While it sounds like a science fiction and a futuristic claim, scientists are sure it will work. The project tries to solve a problem of a memory loss due to sleep deprivation. As you may already know, lack of sleep is one of the major causes of memory loss. The research clearly showed the effects on lab mice when they were deprived of sleep for several days. The brain cells started to die and they started to lose memory. We mentioned earlier about nano sponges that can be used to deliver dosages of medicine to a certain parts of a body. The similar technology is trying to be used to send medicine towards the specific region of the brain to fight memory loss and sleep deprivation.
Localized targeting of drugs used in the treatment is extremely important not only for a sleep, but for the overall medicine. It gives scientists new opportunities and opens up a space for a new approaches which will undoubtedly lead to a tremendous medical advancements. As for the sleep, nanotechnology is a big hope for the patients suffering from disorders that torture them every night – Sleep apnea, insomnia and others can be monitored and researched closer and treatment can be more effective. It is only matter of time.