Japanese researchers changed the brain activity of rats only by the smell of coffee.
Read out Just the smell of coffee makes tired rats happy again. The aroma drives the activity of certain genes in the brain that down-regulates the body during sleep deprivation and fatigue, researchers from Yoshinori Masuo at the National Institute for Industrial Research in Tsukuba have found. Whether the same processes take place in humans, the researchers can not yet say. However, the insight could explain why the scent of coffee brightens the mood. The researchers deprived rats of sleep for one day. Then they examined their brains and found a reduced level of eleven messenger molecules. These so-called mRNAs
are a measure of gene activity. When the smell of coffee smell was fanned, the activity of nine genes returned to normal. The activity of two genes soared beyond normal. These two genes are important for metabolic processes in the brain, the researchers explain.

Whether in tired people, the same genes are down regulated and coffee aroma counteracted, the researchers do not know. The smell of roasted beans, however, seems to revive certain genes that bring people back to a more alert state. The researchers now want to search for these stimulating scent molecules in coffee. These molecules could be added to the air in work spaces to keep tired tired people working, who do not have time for a cup of coffee, the researchers suggest.

New Scientist, June 14, p. 16 ddp / science.de? Martin Schäfer

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