Skip to main page content
Access keys NCBI Homepage MyNCBI Homepage Main Content Main Navigation
Review
. 2016 Oct;68(10):1205-1211.
doi: 10.11477/mf.1416200575.

[The Function of REM Sleep: Implications From Transgenic Mouse Models]

[Article in Japanese]
Affiliations
Review

[The Function of REM Sleep: Implications From Transgenic Mouse Models]

[Article in Japanese]
Mitsuaki Kashiwagi et al. Brain Nerve. .

Abstract

Our sleep is composed of rapid eye movement (REM) sleep and non-REM (NREM) sleep. REM sleep is the major source of dreams, whereas synchronous cortical oscillations, called slow waves, are observed during NREM sleep. Both stages are unique to certain vertebrate species, and therefore, REM and NREM sleep are thought to be involved in higher-order brain functions. While several studies have revealed the importance of NREM sleep in growth hormone secretion, memory consolidation and brain metabolite clearance, the functions of REM sleep are currently almost totally unknown. REM sleep functions cannot be easily indicated from classical REM sleep deprivation experiments, where animals are forced to wake up whenever they enter REM sleep, because such experiments produce extreme stress due to the stimuli and because REM sleep is under strong homeostatic regulation. To overcome these issues, we developed a novel transgenic mouse model in which REM sleep can be manipulated. Using these mice, we found that REM sleep enhances slow wave activity during the subsequent NREM sleep. Slow wave activity is known to contribute to memory consolidation and synaptic plasticity. Thus, REM sleep might be involved in higher-order brain functions through its role in enhancing slow wave activity.

Similar articles

See all similar articles

Substances

LinkOut - more resources

Feedback