Twinkling lights aren't just pretty -- if they're flickering at a specific frequency, they could also treat Alzheimer's disease. A group of researchers have tested the effectiveness of LED lights flashing at 40 hertz as a treatment for Alzheimer's on mice genetically engineered to develop the condition.
They found that exposing mice in the early stages of Alzheimer's to the lights for an hour lowered the beta amyloid protein levels in their brains.
The flickering lights work by stimulating gamma oscillation, which is believed to be impaired in people suffering from the illness. Gamma oscillation transforms immune cells called microglia, which become inflamed and secrete toxic chemicals in Alzheimer's patients, back to their old self. Since microglia are in charge of clearing out amyloids, turning them back into functioning immune cells fights off the formation of plaques!