Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

What Is The Role Of Thyroid Hormones In Sleep Regulation?

Date:
August 14, 2007
Source:
Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey
Summary:
While the thyroid has long been linked to metabolism, new research is investigating the possibility that thyroid hormones have an important role in sleep regulation.

While the thyroid has long been linked to metabolism, cutting-edge research underway at Rutgers University—Camden is investigating the possibility that thyroid hormones have an important role in sleep regulation.

Thanks to a $415,369 grant from the National Science Foundation, a team of Rutgers-Camden researchers will pinpoint precisely how and when thyroid hormones influence the brain’s sleep-related structures. Findings could yield new knowledge on a previously unknown sleep-regulatory substance and potentially answer why existing sleep medications aren’t the cure-all for everyone.

Joseph V. Martin, a professor of biology, is the principle investigator and Alex Roche, an associate professor of chemistry, is the co-principal investigator of the ambitious project at Rutgers-Camden.

A diagnosis of thyroid cancer in 1991 inspired Martin’s in-depth studies of thyroid hormones for over a decade. Martin has been cancer-free since the removal of his thyroid gland, but his need to compensate for its absence with pills has been educational.

“I have to adjust the dose regularly with my doctor. If it’s too high, I have sleeping problems, if it’s too low there could be lethargy and weight gain,” he points out.

Martin’s professional research has informed his own understanding of his condition. Once he became aware of thyroid hormones’ effect on the brain, he saw connections to his own life and to unsolved problems related to the role of thyroid hormones in the nervous system.

Martin’s previous research established that in the adult brain, thyroid hormones act on receptors on the outside of cells, functioning like neurotransmitters. His findings contrast greatly with the well-documented functions of thyroid hormones, which are secreted from a gland located in the neck and increases cellular activity in nearly all tissues of the body by acting inside cells.

“Thyroid hormones do so much more than regulate weight. We’re really just beginning to learn the true extent of how these hormones impact our overall health,” Martin says.

The research underway at Rutgers-Camden will build on earlier findings by providing specific measurements of the levels of thyroid hormones and the compounds which are derived from them in the brain during circadian rhythms and during sleep and waking. Additional research will include observations of the effect of microinjections of thyroid hormones in sleep-related brain structures of rats.

As in the Rutgers-Camden scientists’ previous research endeavors, undergraduate and graduate students will have an active role in this project.

Martin earned his bachelor’s degree in neuroscience from Northwestern University and his doctoral degree in neurobiology from the University of California at Los Angeles. A resident of Medford Lakes, he is the acting director of the newly formed Center for Computational and Integrative Biology at Rutgers-Camden.

Roche earned his bachelor’s and doctoral degrees from the University of Durham in the United Kingdom. He researches unusual and interesting fluorinated organic molecules, which have applications in computer technology and battery design.

The Camden campus of Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey, offers 34 undergraduate and 16 master’s-level programs, as well as the nation’s first PhD program in childhood studies. Located in the heart of the vibrant Camden Waterfront, Rutgers-Camden is home to 260 faculty whose research, teaching, and service endeavors are respected worldwide.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey. "What Is The Role Of Thyroid Hormones In Sleep Regulation?." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 14 August 2007. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/08/070808094704.htm>.
Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey. (2007, August 14). What Is The Role Of Thyroid Hormones In Sleep Regulation?. ScienceDaily. Retrieved August 2, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/08/070808094704.htm
Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey. "What Is The Role Of Thyroid Hormones In Sleep Regulation?." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/08/070808094704.htm (accessed August 2, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Saturday, August 2, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Texas Quintuplets Head Home

Texas Quintuplets Head Home

Reuters - US Online Video (Aug. 1, 2014) After four months in the hospital, the first quintuplets to be born at Baylor University Medical Center head home. Linda So reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Ebola Patient Coming to U.S. for Treatment

Ebola Patient Coming to U.S. for Treatment

Reuters - US Online Video (Aug. 1, 2014) A U.S. aid worker infected with Ebola while working in West Africa will be treated in a high security ward at Emory University in Atlanta. Linda So reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Ebola Vaccine Might Be Coming, But Where's It Been?

Ebola Vaccine Might Be Coming, But Where's It Been?

Newsy (Aug. 1, 2014) Health officials are working to fast-track a vaccine — the West-African Ebola outbreak has killed more than 700. But why didn't we already have one? Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Study Links Certain Birth Control Pills To Breast Cancer

Study Links Certain Birth Control Pills To Breast Cancer

Newsy (Aug. 1, 2014) Previous studies have made the link between birth control and breast cancer, but the latest makes the link to high-estrogen oral contraceptives. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins