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DrmDoc last won the day on February 25

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About DrmDoc

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    USA (eastern)
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    Neuroscience, Neuropsychology, Oneirology, Brain Evolution,
  1. Thankfully, neither do I. Today I learned that American whiskey brand Jack Daniel's owes its founding to Nathan Green, a slave who taught a teenaged Daniel how to distill. According the New York Times, sales of JD brands generate about $3 billion in annual revenue.
  2. I see your point. Although I didn't make my position as clear as I should have with my initial comment, my subsequent comment were indeed intended as a response to the specific OP implication that neural detoxification in sleep was speculation, which it is not. You're quite correct regarding my dismissal of sleep as essential for memory consolidation; however, it's not my opinion that amyloid clearance is a process disruptive to those that may involve memory consolidation. My comment on this issue regards amyloids aggregates as a disruption to the consolidation process that must be removed for the process to be effective. I'll have a look at the papers you've referenced as I remain very interested.
  3. Wow! The upheaval in Trump's administration may soon rival Nixon's--if it hasn't already.
  4. As I understood the OP, his initial comments regarded: In response, I've discussed and provided a link to a description of the glymphatic process. My initial comments then were to confirm that the clearing of toxins from the brain during sleep is not speculative but is indeed supported by research. Although I've acknowledge that sleep is probably not necessary for some clearance, I've provided links to articles discussing research describing how sleep more effectively promotes this glymphatic process. Indeed, I've asserted a strong link between the glymphatic process and memory but not as the main process or impetus for sleep, but rather as confirmation of the process. There are indeed processes that occur during sleep other than the glymphatic process (e.g., glycogen production) and some of those processes may have nothing to do with sleep mediation. However, I did provide links to sources confirming the biochemical mediation of sleep, which answers the OP's question of physiology versus psychology for sleep induction. Regarding memory and neural consolidation in sleep, I have asserted an opinion that this process, based on my perspective of the research, cannot occur or occur efficiently without the clearance of interstitial toxins and is, therefore, not necessarily the primary impetus for sleep. I've have asserted that whatever enhanced neural connectivity or mental acuity we experience upon arousal from sleep it's likely an effect of our sleeping brain's more efficient clearance process, which is a process shown to more efficiently remove the aggregates of toxins (e.g., amyloids) found in memory deficient brains such as Alzheimer's. However, in my opinion, not doubt exist as to primary impetus or cause for sleep, which involves the biochemicals that induce sleep and their removal from the brain rather than a consolidation function that some believe cannot occur while the brain is more active. It's my understanding that pannexin are glycoproteins that form single membrane channels and is associated with the release of ATP rather than the metabolized adenosine. Please, post a link to the research you've described. I try to stay current and remain very interested.
  5. It seems Trump's impeachment may not be necessary. According the The Hill, Trump's "Art of the Deal" co-author, Tony Schwartz, is predicting Donald's resignation before the end of this year saying: Whether Trump is impeached or he resigns, a Pence presidency is just as concerning because he's a polished politician who would likely be more adept at pushing the GOP agenda through Congress.
  6. The clearance function, as in the link I've provided, involves our brain's glymphatic system in which amyloid removal rather than metabolized adenosine triphosphate (ATP) is implicated. However, metabolized ATP does produce adenosine, which is indeed a neuromodulator shown to induce sleep. The role of ATP in sleep is in the production of glycogen which, as you may know, is the reserve form of the glucose and oxygen our brain uses as energy. Although not clearly implicated in the homeostatic regulation of sleep, there's ample research evidence suggesting that replenishing glycogen is indeed a major function of sleep. Indeed, a less active brain promotes preservation and production of the energy it requires for full function. What I've found in most of the available meta-data on sleep is solid evidence for its biochemical modulation and interstitial clearance processes. The evidence for consolidation, from what I've reviewed and IMO, is rooted in sleep deprivation and acuity studies that do not provide firm neurological evidence unrelated or not relatable to the clearance of inhibitory substances. Indeed, there are no simple answers but I think those answers we do have are relatively clear.
  7. Indeed, you understand correctly. There's ample evidence that sleep is regulated and induced by our brain's biology (See melatonin and adenosine). Adenosine, particularly, is produced as our brain metabolizes ATP, which is our brain's primary source of energy. Adenosine acts as an inhibitor in our central nervous system, which induces sleep. As this neuromodulator is cleared from the brain, so is its effects in impeding brain function. There's no psychology to this process, which merely involves the removal of a metabolized substance that impedes brain function and the mental acuity that function produces. As I understand the process, memory and neural consolidation cannot occur without clearing those biochemical substances that inhibit our neural process. Even brain plasticity is affected by these neuromodulators. Although some memory upkeep and neural repair occurs during sleep, those processes are likely not the impetus for sleep unless they involve the production of those neuromodulators that induce sleep. I think the amyloid hypothesis is very conclusive as it relates to its effects in Alzheimer's. Therefore, its efficient removal in sleep is likely critical to our mental acuity upon arousal from sleep.
  8. Actually, there is no speculation as to what processes occur in sleep. Research has indeed confirmed that our brain engages an effective system (glymphatic system) of interstitial waste clearance. Although waste clearance also occurs when our brain is active and engaged, the process increase in efficiency during the non-dreaming stages of sleep. When we are awake and active, our brain produces and accumulates toxins that are more efficiently removed when our brain is in non-REM and not as active in producing interstitial waste. Our brain works better when it is clear of metabolic waste byproducts such as amyloid beta whose aggregation is observed as plaque in the brain's of Alzheimer's patients. We feel refreshed and alert because of this glymphatic process that occurs amid sleep. I've argued against this idea of memory consolidation in sleep because, frankly, there's not credible evidence of that process. If we are more alert, think and remember things more clearly after sleep, it's because our neurons can connect and function more efficiently when our brain is efficiently cleared of extracellular toxins that can produce neurological dysfunction and disease. Although a lack of sleep does affect our psychology that particular affect is rooted in our brain's metabolic needs and processes, which how our brain evolved. Our brain is the largest consumer of our body's overall energy uptake and sleep doesn't suspend our its metabolic needs. Dreaming occurs when our brain activates to increase blood flow to the brain, which resupplies our brain with the nutrients and oxygen it requires amid sleep. Although dreaming is caused by our brain's metabolic needs in sleep, the activation those needs precipitate involve and arouse our sleeping brain's cognitive centers and processes. The imagery in our dreams are a synthesis of the physiological and latent perceptions our brain detects amid this cognitive arousal stage in sleep.
  9. For those of you who have interest, here's a SciShow Psych link where you may learn about the 5 distinctive brainwave patterns our brain produces. They are delta, theta, alpha, beta, and gamma. The video also discusses a study suggesting how gamma wave exposure might influence our brain biology. According to the host, researchers found that mice-with genetically modified light-sensitive neurons--produced "half as many plaques in their visual cortex compared to controls." The implications of this finding in the treatment of Alzheimer could be enormous. Enjoy!
  10. Today I learned about Arthur C. Clarke's The Nine Billion Names of God.
  11. Today I learned about the French Pompeii. According to CNN: The site was apparently covered in ash after a great fire destroyed the town.
  12. Today I learned about Morgan's Wonderland. It's a $32 million San Antonio, TX, theme and water park for special needs children inspired by Morgan and built by her father.
  13. A remarkable step towards understanding and preventing prostate cancer. Quite informative!
  14. Today I learned that fetal gene expression in the spinal cord, rather than a functional motor cortex, may be the genesis of whether we are right or left-handed. I emphasized may because this study is base on a limited sampling ("five human fetuses).
  15. I think the saturation of political threads is concurrent with the ebb and flow of politics in American and will naturally decrease as our political landscape evolve. Religion, on the other hand, is a virus for which there's no cure. We need that religion forum to draw its viruses away from other, more scientifically healthy threads. No remedy other than the immediate removal and closure of religious threads and either the suspension or expulsion of violators will deter the religious faithful. I know this isn't much help but, IMO, trying to make scientific discussion more appealing than politics and, particularly, religion is an unsolvable conundrum.