Table 3: Sleep loss effects on immune molecular inflammatory mediators.

Sleep loss conditionSubject’s characteristicsCytokines
(pg/mL)
C-reactive proteinReference

Total sleep deprivation 1 nightIL-6 ↑ SL [34]
Germany
16 controls Control
11 females, 5 malesBasal ND
BMI 20.7–24.1 kg/m2TSD *ND
Recovery *ND
15 unmedicatedDepressed
depressed patientsBasal ND
10 females, 5 malesTSD *ND
BMI 18.8–26.4 kg/m2

Total sleep deprivation 1 nightIL-6 ? SL [87]
Italy
9 females, 1 maleBasal NDND
Bipolar disorderTSD ND
36–53 years

Total sleep deprivation 40 hoursIL-1β ↑ PLCRP ↑ PL mg/L [40]
USA
9 females, 10 malesBasal ~0.20Basal ~0.20
20–36 yearsTSD ~0.45*TSD ~0.50*
BMI 18.5–24.5 kg/m2IL-6 ↑ PL
Basal ~1.6
TSD ~1.9*

Total sleep deprivation 40 hours12 healthy males
29.1 ± 3.3 years
BMI 23.4 ± 1.5 kg/m2
IL-6 =
Basal
TSD
Recovery * 
TNF-α =
Basal TSD
CRP = µg/mL
Basal
TSD
Recovery
[88]
France

Total sleep deprivation 40 hoursIL-6 = PL [39]
France
12 healthy males
26–32 years
Basal ~3.5
TSD ~3.6
ND
ND
BMI 21.9–24.9 kg/m2TNF-α ↑ PL
Basal
TSD *

Total sleep deprivation 88 hoursCRP ↑ PL mg/L [89]
USA
10 healthy malesBasal 0.39 ± 0.13
22–37 yearsDay 1: 0.48 ± 0.16*
NDDay 2: 0.50 ± 0.20*
Day 3: 0.65 ± 0.23*
Recovery 0.66 ± 0.24*

Sleep
restriction 5 hours time in bed (1 night)
IL-6 ↑ PL [90]
Tunisia
20 males Basal ND
20–22 years
71–75 kg
SR *ND

Sleep
restriction 4.2 hours time in bed (2 nights)
IL-6 = PL [84]
Germany
15 males Basal ND
20–40 years
BMI 20.5–24.9 kg/m2
SR ND

Sleep IL-6 ↑ PL [91]
USA
restriction25 control malesBasal ~2.9ND
4 hours time in SR ~2.8ND
bed (4 days)25 alcoholic males SR + Alc ~4.1ND
TNF-α ↑ PL
Basal ~1.2
SR ~1.0
SR + Alc ~3.0

Sleep restriction
1 hour time in bed (7 nights)
IL-1β↑ PLCRP↑ PL mg/L [92]
Norway
8 males Basal Basal 1.38 ± 0.89
25.8 ± 0.9 years
BMI 80 ± 3.7 kg/m2 Demanding physical challenges and SR
SR day 7: *SR Day 7: 11.38 ± 3.05*

Sleep NDCRP ↑ PL mg/L [89]
USA
restriction4 females, 6 malesBasal
4.2 hours time 26–38 yearsSR *
in bed (10 nights)BMI 21–31 kg/m2

SleepIL-6↑ PLCRP = SL mg/L [85]
USA
restriction 6 females, 12 malesBasal Basal
4 hours time in21–40 years SR D10: *SR Day 10:
bed (10 nights)BMI 20–26 kg/m2Recovery *

Sleep IL-6 ↑ SL CRP ↑ SL mg/L [93]
Iceland
fragmentation 22 females, 136 males
OSA patientsBMI < 30 kg/m2 1.8 ± 0.2
28 females, 136 males
BMI 30.1–34.9 kg/m2 ** 4.1 ± 0.5**
25 females, 107 males
BMI > 35 kg/m2 ** 2.6 ± 0.3**

Sleep TNF-α ↑ PL [94]
Spain
fragmentation148 children AHI ≤ 1:
OSA patients6–12 yearsAHI ≥ 10: *ND

Sleep fragmentation veteransIL-1β = PL [95]
USA
Good sleep 7 malesGood sleep ~1.7ND
Poor sleep 58 malesPoor sleep ~3.2 ND
IL-6 = PL
Good sleep ~37.6
Poor sleep ~34.2
TNF-α = PL
Good sleep ~0.8
Poor sleep ~1.2

Sleep fragmentation OSA patientsSleep durations
<6 hours, 249 males
6-7 hours, 227 males
>7 hours, 135 males
IL-6 = PL
<6 hours: 2.08–2.54
6-7 hours: 1.96–2.39
>7 hours: 2.00–2.59
TNF-α = PL
<6 hours: 2.86–3.73
6-7 hours: 2.52–3.28
>7 hours: 2.19–3.10
CRP ↑ SL mg/L
<6 hours: 1.79–2.47
6-7 hours: 1.71–2.35
>7 hours: 1.71–2.56
[96]
USA

Abbreviations: AHI: apnea-hypopnea index (expressed as the number of events per hour of total sleep time); BMI: body mass index; ND: nondetermined; OSA: obstructive sleep apnea; PL: plasma levels; SL: serum levels; SR: sleep restriction; TSD: total sleep deprivation; ~: approximate values obtained from report tables; : increase; =: not change; : decrease; ?: without basal data; *significant differences with ; **significant differences with . Mean ± standard deviation.