Brain Bioenergetics

neuron photobiomodulation

Neurons are cells that contain mitochondria.

By delivering photons to a light-sensitive enzyme(cytochrome c oxidase) found within the mitochondria, this triggers a cascade of beneficial and energizing cellular events.

Some potential effects are : enhanced cognition, neuroprotective effects, self-repair mechanisms

  • 2018 pilot trial on increasing cerebral blood flow via brain photobiomodulation using the Vielight Neuro Gamma, by the University of California San Francisco
    (Link, Photomedicine and Laser Surgery)
  • 2019 research study on modulating brain oscillations using the Vielight Neuro Gamma, by the Temerty Centre for Therapeutic Brain Intervention, Toronto
    (Link, Nature Scientific Reports)

Photonic Diffusion

photobiomodulation brain

Electromagnetic radiation within the NIR range carries the most potent form of photonic diffusion through tissue, blood and brain.

The 810nm wavelength exhibits the least photonic scattering and absorption by blood and water in the entire electromagnetic spectrum.

Clinical studies have shown that NIR radiation of sufficient power density is capable of diffusing through the scalp, skull and brain.

The Vielight Intranasal Advantage

A Pitzschke, B Lovisa, O Seydoux, M Zellweger, M Pfleiderer, Y Tardy and G Wagnières (2015). Red and NIR light dosimetry in the human deep brain., Federal Institute of Technology (EPFL), Institute of Chemical Sciences and Engineering (ISIC), 1015 Lausanne, Switzerland, Phys. Med. Biol. 60 (2015) 2921–2937

Vielight’s patented intranasal stimulation technology and microchip LED technology are powerful tools for brain photobiomodulation.

Why?

The intranasal channel lacks hair and skin, which are natural barriers for light energy.

Being just 3 inches from the brain, the intranasal channel is the most efficient channel for photobiomodulating the deeper, ventral brain area.

These deep structures within the brain’s core have important functions, such as long term memory and hormonal regulation.

In-Depth Summary

Mechanisms of Brain Photobiomodulation

Brain photobiomodulation (PBM) utilizes red to near-infrared (NIR) photons to stimulate the cytochrome c oxidase enzyme (chromophore/complex IV) of the mitochondrial respiratory chain because this enzyme is receptive to light energy. This outcomes are an increase in ATP synthesis, leading to the generation of more cellular energy. Additionally, photon absorption by ion channels results in release of Ca2+ which leads to the activation of transcription factors and gene expression.

There are several mechanisms associated with promoting physiological change through photobiomodulation therapy (PBMT). The wavelengths primarily used with PBM is within the near-infrared range of the electromagnetic spectrum with a sufficient power density. When hypoxic/impaired cells are irradiated with low level NIR photons, there is increased mitochondrial adenosine tri-phosphate (ATP) production within their mitochondria.1, 2 Another change is the release of nitric oxide from the hypoxic/impaired cells. Neurons are cells that contain mitochondria and nitric oxide.

In hypoxic neuronal cells, cytochrome-C oxidase (CCO), a membrane-bound protein that serves as the end-point electron acceptor in the cell respiration electron transport chain, becomes inhibited by non-covalent binding of nitric oxide. When exposed to NIR photons, the CCO releases nitric oxide, which then diffuses outs of the cell – increasing local blood flow and vasodilation.3, 4

Following initial exposure to the NIR photons, there is a brief burst of reactive oxygen species (ROS) in the neuron cell, and this activates a number of signaling pathways. The ROS leads to activation of redox-sensitive genes, and related transcription factors including NF-κβ.5, 6 The PBMT stimulates gene expression for cellular proliferation, migration, and the production of anti-inflammatory cytokines and growth factors.7

1. Karu T. Primary and secondary mechanisms of action of visible to near-IR radiation on cells. J Photochem Photobiol B 1999;49:1-17.
2. Wong-Riley MT, Liang HL, Eells JT, Chance B, Henry MM, Buchmann E, Kane M, Whelan HT. Photobiomodulation directly benefits primary neurons functionally inactivated by toxins: role of cytochrome c oxidase. J Biol Chem 2005;280:4761-4771.
3. Karu TI, Pyatibrat LV, Afanasyeva NI. Cellular effects of low power laser therapy can be mediated by nitric oxide. Lasers Surg Med 2005;36:307-314.
4. Huang YY, Chen AC, Carroll JD, Hamblin MR. Biphasic dose response in low level light therapy. Dose Response 2009;7:358-383.
5. Migliario M, Pittarella P, Fanuli M, Rizzi M, Reno F. Laser-induced osteoblast proliferation is mediated by ROS production. Lasers Med Sci 2014;29:1463-1467.
6. Avci P, Gupta GK, Clark J, Wikonkal N, Hamblin MR. Low-level laser (light) therapy (LLLT) for treatment of hair loss. Lasers Surg Med 2014;46:144-151.
7. Huang YY, Gupta A, Vecchio D, de Arce VJ, Huang SF, Xuan W, Hamblin MR. Transcranial low level laser (light) therapy for traumatic brain injury. J Biophotonics 2012;5:827-837.