Does sleep play a role in memory consolidation? A comparative test
Capellini, Isabella; McNamara, Patrick; Preston, Brian T.; Nunn, Charles L.; Barton, Robert A.
Brian T. Preston
Charles L. Nunn
Robert A. Barton
Sleep is a pervasive characteristic of mammalian species, yet its purpose remains obscure. It is often proposed that 'sleep is for the brain', a view that is supported by experimental studies showing that sleep improves cognitive processes such as memory consolidation. Some comparative studies have also reported that mammalian sleep durations are higher among more encephalized species. However, no study has assessed the relationship between sleep and the brain structures that are implicated in specific cognitive processes across species. The hippocampus, neocortex and amygdala are important for memory consolidation and learning and are also in a highly actived state during sleep. We therefore investigated the evolutionary relationship between mammalian sleep and the size of these brain structures using phylogenetic comparative methods. We found that evolutionary increases in the size of the amygdala are associated with corresponding increases in NREM sleep durations. These results are consistent with the hypothesis that NREM sleep is functionally linked with specializations of the amygdala, including perhaps memory processing. © 2009 Capellini et al.
|Journal Article Type||Article|
|Publication Date||Feb 25, 2009|
|Publisher||Public Library of Science|
|Peer Reviewed||Peer Reviewed|
|Article Number||ARTN e4609|
|Institution Citation||Capellini, I., McNamara, P., Preston, B. T., Nunn, C. L., & Barton, R. A. (2009). Does sleep play a role in memory consolidation? A comparative test. PloS one, 4(2), e4609. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0004609|
|Keywords||Sleep, Memory consolidation, Amygdala, Memory, Hippocampus, Neocortex, Learning, Animal phylogenetics|
|Copyright Statement||© 2009 Capellini et al. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.|
|Additional Information||Copy of article first published in PLoS ONE, 2009, v.4, issue 2|
© 2009 Capellini et al. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.