Effectiveness of blue light

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Jacques Taillard
Patricia Sagaspe
Aurore Capelli
Damien Leger
Colette Fabrigoule
Damien Davenne
Torbjörn Åkerstedt
Pierre Philip

At night, driving ability is impaired by sleepiness induced by sleep deprivation. To meet societal demand, it is necessary to develop countermeasures to fight this drowsiness. Currently, caffeine and naps are effective countermeasures but they have some limitations (differences between individuals in terms of efficiency, limited efficiency duration, side effects). The development and evaluation of new and easily usable countermeasures is wished for the prevention of accidents related to sleepiness. A light wavelength of 480 nm (light blue) improves performance and increases the night time arousal. This countermeasure will be tested under real driving conditions. Since there are differences between individuals in the driving ability degradation induced by sleep deprivation and in the countermeasures efficiency duration, this study will also attempt to determine whether some gene polymorphisms (e.g. PER3, COMT, ADORA2A and ADA polymorphism) or some hormone concentrations (e.g. cortisol and amylase concentrations) involved in regulating the sleep / wake cycle can explain the differences between individuals. Basal cognitive performance of subjects could also explain these inter individual differences. Age is an important factor to consider because half of fatal and nonfatal accidents involving young people occur at night and nocturnal performance were considerably more impaired in young than in older subjects.

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