Insomnia is a disorder that has become very common and it has unfavorable medical outcomes. It may affect almost 20% of adults and about 1/3rd risk of insomnia is said to be inherited. Many studies have shown that there is a link between insomnia and various chronic diseases, like depression and heart disease. Many have suggested that these chronic diseases may be a result of continuous insomnia. A very popular study was conducted and it showed that 57 gene sites can be directly associated with insomnia. These associations were not affected by other risk factors that may include the person’s lifestyle, their caffeine intake, or their history of depression.
Genomic regions that were identified involve genes that were related to mediated proteolysis. Other type of genes were from different brain regions, adrenal gland, and skeletal muscles. Many different type of genes were identified to be related to insomnia. Some of the identified genes also linked the symptoms of insomnia to leg syndrome and to artery disease as well. The regions that were studied did not link neurotransmission genes to reducing insomnia or regulating your sleep cycle.
Another study conducted dived into the genetic data of 1.3 million people and they were able to locate around 960 variants of genes that could be linked with increased sensitivity towards insomnia. They were also able to discover that these genes also play a significant role when it comes to the operations of your brain. They play their part in sending electrical messages out of the nerve body cell. The genes that were associated also had an impact on some cell types, which may include claustrum and hypothalamic neurons. As mentioned before, there were genes, like the frontal cortex, that had been linked to chronic diseases.
Many people may be of the opinion that getting yourself is just a matter of willpower and is not that big of deal, but there could be neurobiological reasons behind the matter. In 2016, a study found out that there were some abnormalities related to the white matter tract of people who had insomnia and also there were issues in their limbic system as well. Insomnia has been found to have a lot in common with the genes that are also linked with anxiety and depression rather than having common elements with other sleep characteristics.