Costs of missing sleep

Some fruit flies do fine without sleep, as long as they’ve got enough to eat

By Stephen Ornes, 15:30 PM February 15, 2012

Not all fruit flies are born equal. Some can skip 12 hours of sleep without missing a beat; others need their beauty rest to keep buzzing. In recent experiments on these two varieties of flies, scientists found that the bugs that skip zzzz’s pay a price to stay awake: They don’t fare as well as well-rested flies when food supplies dwindle.

Scientists often study fruit fly behavior to try to understand how the human brain works. The new fruit fly sleep study may suggest answers to one of t...

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