1783 Role of Sleep in Brain Development

Sunday, February 21, 2010: 8:30 AM
Room 2 (San Diego Convention Center)
Marcos Frank , University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA
A growing body of evidence suggests that sleep may be a specialized brain state that facilitates adaptive, plastic changes in synapses. This hypothesized function of sleep may be especially important during early life when the brain is rapidly maturing and highly plastic. In this presentation, I will discuss some of our key findings in a canonical model of developmental, experience-dependent plasticity (ocular dominance plasticity). Our experiments show that sleep consolidates ocular dominance plasticity and does so via several cellular and molecular events involved in long-term synaptic potentiation (LTP). These include sleep-dependent changes in the activity of neurons, kinases (such as PKA and CaMKII), and gene transcription and translation.
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