Lack of Sleep Triggers 'Migraine' Proteins
By Salynn Boyles — From medicinenet.com August 25, 2011 1,403 2
June 24, 2010 — Not getting enough sleep or having poor sleep habits can trigger migraines or cause occasional migraines to become frequent. Now new research may help explain the biological links between sleep and headache pain.
Pain researchers from Missouri State University report that rats deprived of REM sleep showed changes in the expression of key proteins that suppress and trigger chronic pain.
The sleep-deprived rats secreted high levels of proteins that arouse the nervous system and low levels of proteins that shut it down, lead researcher Paul L. Durham, PhD, tells WebMD.
Durham is scheduled to report the findings this weekend at the 52nd annual meeting of the American Headache Society in Los Angeles.
"In stressful situations such as sleep deprivation, these arousal proteins occur at levels that are high enough to trigger pain," he says.