One More Step Toward Solving The Sleep & Alzheimer's Puzzle : Short Wave We know that people with Alzheimer's often have sleep problems. But does it work the other way? Do problems with sleep set the stage for this degenerative brain disease?

NPR correspondent Jon Hamilton introduces us to some scientists looking into that connection in this updated report on the key role deep sleep may play in maintaining brain health and protecting the brain against Alzheimer's.

Follow host Maddie Sofia on Twitter @maddie_sofia. Email the show at shortwave@npr.org.
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One More Step Toward Solving The Sleep & Alzheimer's Puzzle

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One More Step Toward Solving The Sleep & Alzheimer's Puzzle

One More Step Toward Solving The Sleep & Alzheimer's Puzzle

One More Step Toward Solving The Sleep & Alzheimer's Puzzle

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/927955827/928380502" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

During deep sleep, waves of cerebrospinal fluid (blue) coincide with temporary decreases in blood flow (red). Less blood in the brain means more room for the fluid to carry away toxins, including those associated with Alzheimer's disease. Fultz et al. 2019 hide caption

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Fultz et al. 2019

During deep sleep, waves of cerebrospinal fluid (blue) coincide with temporary decreases in blood flow (red). Less blood in the brain means more room for the fluid to carry away toxins, including those associated with Alzheimer's disease.

Fultz et al. 2019

We know that people with Alzheimer's often have sleep problems. But does it work the other way? Do problems with sleep set the stage for this degenerative brain disease?

NPR correspondent Jon Hamilton introduces us to some scientists looking into that connection in this updated report on the key role deep sleep may play in maintaining brain health and protecting the brain against Alzheimer's.

Follow host Maddie Sofia on Twitter @maddie_sofia. Email the show at shortwave@npr.org.

This episode was edited by Gisele Grayson, and fact-checked by Ariela Zebede. The original episode was edited by Viet Le.