Can Low-level Light Therapy Boost Memory?
Low-level light therapy (LLLT) with red to near-infrared light-emitting diodes (LEDs) enhances cortical oxygenation and metabolic capacity and memory retention, scientists observed in a series of animal experiments.
Because cerebral hypometabolism characterizes mild cognitive impairment, they say transcranially applied LLLT could have memory-enhancing effects in humans.
The ability of LLLT to increase mitochondrial energy metabolism could be used to recover brain processes affected by regional brain hypometabolism associated with Alzheimer’s disease (AD), Francisco Gonzalez-Lima, PhD, University of Austin, Texas, and colleagues suggest.
“Furthermore, LLLT could be used as a preventive intervention in people who present risk factors for AD, such as those with chronic cerebrovascular hypoperfusion, mild cognitive impairment, or a history of head trauma. In such patients, LLLT could be combined with cognitive intervention approaches,” they say.
Their study is published online in the Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease.