Science Current Events | Science News | Brightsurf.com
 

Light-induced hormone surge points to benefits of light therapy

November 09, 2005
A report in the November Cell Metabolism reveals powerful effects of light on the adrenal glands, a finding that might explain the broad benefits of bright light therapy for a variety of conditions, including sleep and depressive disorders, according to researchers. The body's two adrenal glands sit atop each kidney, where they secrete hormones that regulate stress response and metabolism.

The researchers found in mice that light sparks a cascade of gene activity in the adrenal gland through its effects on the suprachiasmatic nucleus (SCN). Located in the brain region called the hypothalamus, the SCN is the seat of the circadian clock, the body's internal clock that regulates the roughly 24-hour cycle of biological processes.

Moreover, the researchers report, the gene expression changes accompany a massive surge of the steroid hormone corticosterone in the animals' blood and brain. That hormonal response increased with light intensity, they found.

Glucocorticoids-including cortisone in humans and corticosterone in mice-play many roles throughout the body, including metabolic response to starvation, antiinflammatory immune response, and the timing of circadian rhythms in peripheral organs. Therefore, light-induced secretion of glucocorticoids may play a key role in physiological changes in the body and the brain evoked by light, reported study author Hitoshi Okamura of Kobe University Graduate School of Medicine in Japan

First introduced in the early 1980s for the treatment of seasonal affective disorder, bright light therapy has been applied to many sleep disorders, including jet lag syndrome and shift work sleep disorder, the reseachers said. Shift work sleep disorder, which affects people who frequently rotate shifts or work at night, is often accompanied by metabolic symptoms, including hypertension, cancer, and diabetes.

"In these patients, light therapy improves not only psychiatric status, but also disordered hormones and metabolisms," Okamura said. "However, effects of light had only been established on melatonin, and the remaining powerful and broad effects of light on body metabolism and hormones remained to be clarified."

The researchers examined the activity of the clock gene Per1 in the organs of living animals. The team found that nighttime light exposure induced Per1 expression in the adrenal gland. Further analysis of the gland revealed numerous changes in the activity of almost 200 genes, followed by the delayed release of corticosterone.

When the researchers severed the SCN, light's effect on the gland was lost, indicating that the phenomenon is closely linked to the circadian clock, they said.

"The surge of blood corticosterone after light exposure indicates that environmental signals are instantly converted to glucocorticoid signals in the blood and cerebrospinal fluid," Okamura reported. "The present light-induced corticosterone release may entrain metabolically peripheral clocks to the environmental light-dark cycle through its prevailing receptors located in virtually all cells in the body."

The findings could prove of great clinical and physiological interest, wrote Ueli Schibler and Steven Brown in an accompanying commentary.

"If a light-induced pathway were also operative in humans, a question that could readily be examined by recording blood cortisone levels after light exposure, it would be tempting to speculate that cortisone-mediated synchronization of peripheral circadian clocks would be one of the beneficial effects light therapy has on patients with seasonal affective disorder," Schibler and Brown said.

"It might also explain why bright light therapy can aid patients with other disorders-such as major depressive disorder and bipolar disorder-not typically associated with the circadian clock," they continued.

Cell Press


Related Light Therapy Current Events and Light Therapy News Articles


Cherenkov Effect improves radiation therapy for patients with cancer
The characteristic blue glow from a nuclear reactor is present in radiation therapy, too. Investigators from Dartmouth's Norris Cotton Cancer Center, led by Brian W. Pogue, PhD, and PhD candidates Adam K. Glaser and Rongxiao Zhang, published in Physics in Medicine and Biology how the complex parts of the blue light known as the Cherenkov Effect can be measured and used in dosimetry to make therapies safer and more effective.

Is it possible to reset our biological clocks?
Imagine being able to easily get over all of the discomfort and problems of jet lag or night-shift work.

Panic attacks associated with fear of bright daylight
Fear of bright daylight is associated with panic disorder, according to new presented at the ECNP congress in Berlin.

Vitiligo treatment holds promise for restoring skin pigmentation
A treatment regimen is safe and effective for restoring skin pigmentation in vitiligo patients, according to a Henry Ford Hospital study.

Researchers use light to coax stem cells to repair teeth
A Harvard-led team is the first to demonstrate the ability to use low-power light to trigger stem cells inside the body to regenerate tissue, an advance they reported in Science Translational Medicine.

Depression in pregnancy: New study shows preferences for therapy over medication
Women with depression in the perinatal period experience a high degree of conflict in deciding whether and how to treat their depression, but strongly prefer treatments other than antidepressant medications, reports a study in the November Journal of Psychiatric Practice®.

Bright light therapy may improve sleep and promote recovery in patients with mild TBI
A new study suggests that bright light therapy may improve sleep, cognition, emotion and brain function following mild traumatic brain injury (TBI).

Controlling vascular disease may be key to reducing prevalence of Alzheimer's disease
Over the last 15 years, researchers have found a significant association between vascular diseases such as hypertension, atherosclerosis, diabetes type 2, hyperlipidemia, and heart disease and an increased risk of Alzheimer's disease.

Skin Transplant Offers New Hope for Vitiligo Patients
Henry Ford Hospital dermatologists say skin transplant surgery is safe and effective for restoring skin pigmentation caused by the skin disease vitligo.

Veterans show a 50 percent reduction in PTSD symptoms after 8 weeks of Transcendental Meditation
Veterans of the Iraq/Afghanistan wars showed a 50 percent reduction in their symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) after just eight weeks of practicing the stress-reducing Transcendental Meditation technique.
More Light Therapy Current Events and Light Therapy News Articles

Light: Medicine of the Future: How We Can Use It to Heal Ourselves NOW

Light: Medicine of the Future: How We Can Use It to Heal Ourselves NOW
by Jacob Liberman O.D. Ph.D. (Author)


Light: Medicine of the Future challenges the modern myth that the sun is dangerous to our well-being and claims that technological advancements, such as most fluorescent lighting, sunglasses, tanning lotions, and our indoor lifestyles, may be more harmful than helpful. Integrating scientific research, clinical experience, and his own insights, Dr. Jacob Liberman has worked effectively with more than 15,000 individuals, from the learning disabled and physically/emotionally traumatized to business executives and Olympic athletes. The book discusses the use of light in the treatment of various cancers, depression, stress, visual problems, PMS, sexual dysfunction, learning disabilities, and the human immune system.

Light Therapy: Teach Me Everything I Need To Know About Light Therapy In 30 Minutes (Light Therapy - Season Affective Disorder - SAD - Vitamin D)

Light Therapy: Teach Me Everything I Need To Know About Light Therapy In 30 Minutes (Light Therapy - Season Affective Disorder - SAD - Vitamin D)
by 30 Minute Reads (Author)


Discover All You Need To Know About Light Therapy In 30 Minutes BONUS - Get Your Free 10,000 Word Report on the Top 12 Superfoods Learn All The Important Aspects of Light Therapy That Can Improve Your Health Are you suffering from seasonal affected disorder? There are a lot of ways which you can use for treating it and one of the most effective ones ahs to be light therapy. In this book, we will teach you the different ways by which you can make the most out of light therapy. Light therapy is the science that is going to help you in improving your condition by merely the application of the right principles. There are various ways of doing so and in this book; we will familiarize you with different methods of implementing light therapy. Why Should You Read This Book? All those who...

The Depression Cure: The 6-Step Program to Beat Depression without Drugs

The Depression Cure: The 6-Step Program to Beat Depression without Drugs
by Stephen S. Ilardi (Author)


In the past decade, depression rates have skyrocketed, and one in four Americans will suffer from major depression at some point in their lives. Where have we gone wrong? Dr. Stephen Ilardi sheds light on our current predicament and reminds us that our bodies were never designed for the sleep-deprived, poorly nourished, frenzied pace of twenty-first century life.Inspired by the extraordinary resilience of aboriginal groups like the Kaluli of Papua New Guinea, Dr. Ilardi prescribes an easy-to-follow, clinically proven program that harks back to what our bodies were originally made for and what they continue to need. The Depression Cure program has already delivered dramatic results, helping even those who have failed to respond to traditional medications.

Vibrational Healing Through the Chakras: With Light, Color, Sound, Crystals, and Aromatherapy

Vibrational Healing Through the Chakras: With Light, Color, Sound, Crystals, and Aromatherapy
by Joy Gardner (Author)


Every life form is made up of vibrations that coincide with the harmonic frequency to which all life is attuned. The vibrations of the body easily go out of tune when a person is exposed to physical or emotional stress. VIBRATIONAL HEALING THROUGH THE CHAKRAS provides the most up-to-date information on the use of vibrational tools such as crystals, aromas, sounds, bodywork, and homeopathy to help the body remember its own healthy harmonic resonance. Author Joy Gardner offers this in-depth look at vibrational healing for people interested in improving their own health and well-being, as well as those who want to become practitioners of this gentle art. Explore how to use vibrations to release old dysfunctional patterns in the body-mind and replace them with new patterns that resonate with...

Winter Blues, Fourth Edition: Everything You Need to Know to Beat Seasonal Affective Disorder

Winter Blues, Fourth Edition: Everything You Need to Know to Beat Seasonal Affective Disorder
by Norman E. Rosenthal MD (Author)


"A 'landmark book.'"--The New York Times

*When the dark days of winter approach, do you feel sluggish and slow? Is it a struggle to get out of bed each morning?
*Do you have difficulty focusing at work or in relationships, feel down in the dumps, or, worse still, get really depressed?
*Does it get harder than ever to stick to a healthy diet and control your weight?

If you answered yes to one or more of these questions, you may be one of the millions of people who suffer from seasonal affective disorder (SAD). Picking up this book is the first step toward feeling more energized, productive, and alive--all year long. Dr. Norman E. Rosenthal's engaging, compassionate style and rich store of scientific wisdom have made this trusted guide a perennial bestseller. Dr....

Light on Yoga: Yoga Dipika

Light on Yoga: Yoga Dipika
by B. K. S. Iyengar (Author), Yehudi Menuhin (Foreword)


The definitive guide to the philosophy and practice of Yoga--the ancient healing discipline for body and mind--by its greatest living teacher. Light on Yoga provides complete descriptions and illustrations of all the positions and breathing exercises. Features a foreword by Yehudi Menuhin. Illustrations throughout.

Milady's Aesthetician Series: Lasers and Light Therapy

Milady's Aesthetician Series: Lasers and Light Therapy
by Pamela Hill (Author)


Lasers and Light Therapy is the first of its kind, offering a unique approach into the science and technology of laser and light systems. The reader will be exposed to all aspects of this specialized field whether one is working in a medical spa, day spa, or medical clinic. This book is designed to address areas of hair removal and facial / body rejuvenation from a beginning conceptual level into practical hands-on application. Detailed information of treatment protocols is explored starting with the initial consultation and skin care, to the selection of the appropriate cosmetic device, to the delivery of the laser/light technology. The management of the client's goals and maximization of each treatment's outcome is also emphasized for the reader. As one gains knowledge of this...

The Council of Light: Divine Transmissions for Manifesting the Deepest Desires of the Soul

The Council of Light: Divine Transmissions for Manifesting the Deepest Desires of the Soul
by Danielle Rama Hoffman (Author)


Galactic teachings and practices to raise your vibrational energy and create a life of joy, abundance, and ease

* Provides direct transmissions of spiritual technology from the Council of Light to activate the 11 Rays of Light

* Reveals that by shifting your consciousness and raising your inner vibration, you can change your daily life experience and manifest the life you want

* Includes guided journeys and exercises to manifest health, wealth, happiness, and purpose and to form a direct connection with the Council of Light

Through her advanced spiritual work with Thoth, Danielle Rama Hoffman was introduced to the Council of Light--an intergalactic group of thousands of light beings from across the Multiverse. Their purpose is to support individuals as...

Healing With Form, Energy, And Light: The Five Elements In Tibetan Shamanism, Tantra, And Dzogchen

Healing With Form, Energy, And Light: The Five Elements In Tibetan Shamanism, Tantra, And Dzogchen
by Tenzin W. Rinpoche (Author), Mark Dahlby (Editor)


In the shamanic worldview of Tibet, the five elements of earth, water, fire, air, and space are accessed through the raw powers of nature and through non-physical beings associated with the natural world. In the Tibetan tantric view the elements are recognized as five kinds of energy in the body and are balanced with a program of yogic movements, breathing exercises, and visualizations. In these Dzogchen teachings the elements are understood to be the radiance of being and are accessed through pure awareness. Healing with Form, Energy, and Light offers the reader healing meditations and yogic practices on each of these levels. Tenzin Rinpoche's purpose is to strengthen our connection to the sacred aspect of the natural world and to present a guide that explains why certain practices are...

Light Emerging: The Journey of Personal Healing

Light Emerging: The Journey of Personal Healing
by Barbara Brennan (Author)


Barbara Ann Brennan's bestselling first book, Hands of Light, established her as one of the world's most gifted healers and teachers. Now, she continues her ground-breaking exploration of the human energy field, or aura -- the source of our experience of health or illness. Drawing on many new developments in her teaching and practice, she shows how we can be empowered as both patients and healers to understand and work with our most fundamental healing power: the light that emerges from the very center of our humanity.

In a unique approach that encourages a cooperative effort among healer, patient, and other health-care providers, Light Emerging explains what the healer perceives visually, audibly, and kinesthetically and how each of us can participate in every stage of the healing...

© 2015 BrightSurf.com