Today's Medical Fact
Eating breakfast helps to burn calories throughout the day.
Sleep Replacing Nasal Spray
Scientists at DARPA, the high-tech research department of the Pentagon, may have found a cure for sleepiness. The promising nasal spray treatment works by replacing orexin A in the body, a naturally occurring brain hormone that is known to play a role in sleepiness.
The study has shown very promising results based on the testing of the drug on sleep deprived monkeys. Not only did the monkeys regain their cognitive abilities, but their brain looked wide awake in PET scans. It seems to reverse the effects of sleepiness, without any apparent negative side effects or other impacts on the brain.
This "sleep replacement" drug is not meant to replace sleep, but is meant to combat sleepiness without the side effects or addictive qualities of other stimulants currently being used, such as amphetamines and caffeine. Hopefully the drug can help in the treatment of narcolepsy, help military pilots stay awake on long flights, truckers on long hauls, and doctors working long shifts.
Although the drug has been successfully tested on monkeys, it will be quite a while before it’s offered to the public. It still needs to be tested on humans and approved by the FDA, a process which takes about 10 years to complete.