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Influence of rocking on sleep and memory: A multidisciplinary investigation in people and mice with good or poor sleep

English title Influence of rocking on sleep and memory: A multidisciplinary investigation in people and mice with good or poor sleep
Applicant Schwartz Sophie
Number 149731
Funding scheme Interdisciplinary projects
Research institution Dépt des Neurosciences Fondamentales Faculté de Médecine Université de Genève
Institution of higher education University of Geneva - GE
Main discipline Neurophysiology and Brain Research
Start/End 01.01.2014 - 31.12.2017
Approved amount 524'977.00
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Keywords (10)

memory; electroencephalography; humans; insomnia; plasticity; sensory stimulation; mouse; sleep; polysomnography; cognition

Lay Summary (French)

Lead
Nous avons démontré que le bercement facilite l’endormissement et améliore le sommeil lors d’une sieste. Dans ce projet interdisciplinaire, nous étudions les bases cérébrales de l’effet bénéfique du bercement sur le sommeil chez l’humain et chez la souris. Nous testons également comment le bercement influence la consolidation d’information en mémoire.
Lay summary

L’objectif de ce projet interdisciplinaire est de comprendre l’effet du bercement sur le sommeil. Dans ce but, nous mesurons l’impact d’un bercement latéral lent (0.25 Hz) sur des nuits de sommeil chez des sujets sains, des patients avec lésion vestibulaire, et des insomniaques. Parallèlement, nous investiguons les effets du bercement chez la souris.

Sur la base de notre première étude sur des siestes, nous prédisons un approfondissement du sommeil lent pendant le balancement, avec une augmentation d’éléments particuliers du sommeil visibles sur l’enregistrement par électroencéphalogramme: fuseaux du sommeil et oscillations lentes. Ces deux caractéristiques du sommeil lent sont impliquées dans la consolidation d’information en mémoire et la plasticité synaptique.

Un second but majeur à plus long-terme est de promouvoir une approche interdisciplinaire dans l’étude du sommeil. Grâce au développement d’outils communs, ce projet intègre de manière innovante des mesures neurophysiologiques et de plasticité cérébrale chez l’animal et l’humain.

Les troubles et le manque de sommeil ne cessent d’augmenter dans notre société, avec des conséquences désastreuses socio-économiques et sur la santé publique. Proposer des moyens simples pour améliorer le sommeil est donc crucial non seulement sur le plan clinique, mais aussi pour sensibiliser les politiciens et la population générale à l’importance du sommeil.

Direct link to Lay Summary Last update: 04.12.2013

Responsible applicant and co-applicants

Employees

Collaboration

Group / person Country
Types of collaboration
Christoph Michel Lab, UNIGE Switzerland (Europe)
- in-depth/constructive exchanges on approaches, methods or results
- Publication
Sleep Laboratory of Geneva University Hospital Switzerland (Europe)
- in-depth/constructive exchanges on approaches, methods or results
- Publication
- Research Infrastructure

Scientific events

Active participation

Title Type of contribution Title of article or contribution Date Place Persons involved
Life Sciences Switzerland 2017 Poster Rocking mice: a model for the mechanosensory stimulation of the vestibular system and its effects on sleep 10.02.2017 Zurich, Switzerland Kompotis Konstantinos;
Swiss Society for Sleep Research, Sleep Medicine and Chronobiology 2016 Talk given at a conference Rhythmic sensory stimulation of the thalamocortical circuitry in mice: a model for the effects of mechanosensory stimulation on sleep 10.05.2016 Basel, Switzerland Kompotis Konstantinos;
Swiss Society for Neuroscience 2016 Poster Rhythmic sensory stimulation of the thalamocortical circuitry in mice and its effects on sleep homeostasis 20.01.2016 Lausanne, Switzerland Kompotis Konstantinos;
FENS Brain Prize meeting 2015 Poster Rhythmic sensory stimulation of the thalamocortical circuitry in mice and its effects on sleep homeostasis 20.10.2015 Copenhagen, Denmark Kompotis Konstantinos;
European Sleep Research Society 2016 Talk given at a conference Rhythmic sensory stimulation of the thalamocortical circuitry in mice and its effects on sleep 01.09.2015 Bologna, Italy Kompotis Konstantinos;
Sleep and Chronobiology Summer School 2015 Poster Gentle rocking boosts deep sleep and declarative memory 14.07.2015 Oxford, Great Britain and Northern Ireland Perrault Aurore;
Annual Meeting of the Organization for Human Brain Mapping 2015 Poster Effects of gentle rocking on sleep and declarative memory 12.06.2015 Honolulu, United States of America Perrault Aurore;
Annual Congress of the European Sleep Research Society 2014 Poster Effects of gentle rocking on sleep and memory 10.09.2014 Talinn, Estonia Perrault Aurore;
Affective Sciences Annual Research Forum 2014 Poster Gentle rocking boosts sleep and memory 20.01.2014 Genève, Switzerland Perrault Aurore;
Alpine Brain Imaging Meeting 2014 Poster Gentle rocking boosts sleep and memory 08.01.2014 Champery, Switzerland Perrault Aurore;


Knowledge transfer events

Active participation

Title Type of contribution Date Place Persons involved
Master en Neuroscience UNIGE, Cours Neurobiologie des états de vigilances Performances, exhibitions (e.g. for education institutions) 15.05.2016 Geneve, Switzerland Schwartz Sophie;


Communication with the public

Communication Title Media Place Year
Media relations: radio, television Les bienfaits de la turbosieste sont plus nombreux qu'il n'y paraît RTS Western Switzerland 2014
Media relations: print media, online media Les mystères du sommeil Science & Vie N262 International 2014
Talks/events/exhibitions Salon Planète Santé Western Switzerland 2014

Awards

Title Year
"Best Presentation Award"; Sleep and Chronobiology Summer School 2015 2015
"LNDS Travel Grant"; Annual Meeting of the Organization for Human Brain Mapping 2015 2015
"Best Poster Presentation Award"; Affective Sciences Annual Research Forum 2014 2014
"ESRS Travel Grant Award"; Congress of the European Sleep Research Society 2014 2014

Associated projects

Number Title Start Funding scheme
135653 Emotional relevance and sleep shape neural plasticity: A multimodal neuroimaging investigation in humans 01.09.2011 Project funding (Div. I-III)

Abstract

We recently provided scientific support to the notion that “rocking is good for sleep” [Bayer, L., et al., Rocking synchronizes brain waves during a short nap. Curr Biol, 2011. 21(12): p. R461-2.]. We showed that gentle rocking during a short nap facilitates the transition from wakefulness to sleep, and increases slow wave and spindle activity, in healthy subjects. Here, we aim at obtaining a comprehensive understanding of how rocking influences sleep by proposing an interdisciplinary project that combines human and animal research.Here we plan to study the effect of rocking motion during whole-night sleep in healthy volunteers and in patients with vestibular lesions (Project A), as well as in unmedicated insomniacs (Project B). We will also assess the influence of rocking on sleep in a mouse model (Project C). Because we found in our previous study that rocking affects sleep features such as spindles and slow-wave activity that may reflect brain plasticity and/or sleep homeostasis, we will also study the impact of rocking on memory, brain plasticity, and sleep homeostasis in both humans and in the mouse model. Substantial preliminary data have been collected and, together with our respective expertise in each and every method used, support the feasibility of all aspects of our research program. Another major objective of this project is to promote an innovative interdisciplinary approach to sleep. The project establishes a collaboration between three research groups known for their work on the basic molecular genetic aspect of sleep/wake behavior in mice (Franken, UNIL), on the basic neurophysiological mechanisms of sleep (Muhlethaler, UNIGE), and on the role of sleep in cognitive and brain functions in humans (Schwartz, UNIGE). In addition to a combination of scientific expertise, this interdisciplinary project implies the development and use of analogous tools for human and animal research. The results from our initial study on naps were very positively judged by our colleagues from the sleep research and sleep medicine fields. Moreover, because sleep curtailment and poor sleep constitute major and increasingly pervasive health problems in our society, with disastrous socio-economic, and public safety consequences, our findings also attracted considerable media attention. For all these reasons, we feel strongly encouraged to pursue this line of research, and ultimately determine how rocking may effectively improve sleep, especially in the most vulnerable populations.
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