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Sleep deprivation-induced impairment of memory consolidation is not mediated by glucocorticoid stress hormones

Raven, F., Heckman, P. R. A., Havekes, R. & Meerlo, P., 16-Dec-2019, In : Journal of Sleep Research. e12972.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

The general consensus is that sleep promotes neuronal recovery and plasticity, whereas sleep deprivation (SD) impairs brain function, including cognitive processes. Indeed, a wealth of data has shown a negative impact of SD on learning and memory processes, particularly those that involve the hippocampus. The mechanisms underlying these negative effects of sleep loss are only partly understood, but a reoccurring question is whether they are in part caused by stress hormones that may be released during SD. The purpose of the present study is therefore to examine the role of glucocorticoid stress hormones in SD-induced memory impairment. Male C57BL/6J mice were trained in an object-location memory paradigm, followed by 6 hr of SD by mild stimulation. At the beginning of the SD mice were injected with the corticosterone synthesis inhibitor metyrapone. Memory was tested 24 hr after training. Blood samples taken in a separate group of mice showed that SD resulted in a mild but significant increase in plasma corticosterone levels, which was prevented by metyrapone. However, the SD-induced impairment in object-location memory was not prevented by metyrapone treatment. This indicates that glucocorticoids play no role in causing the memory impairments seen after a short period of SD.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere12972
JournalJournal of Sleep Research
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 16-Dec-2019

    Keywords

  • Cognition, Sleep disturbance, Sleep restriction, OBJECT RECOGNITION, HIPPOCAMPAL NEUROGENESIS, FRAGMENTATION, EXPLORATION, PLASTICITY, IMPACT, BRAIN, MICE, TIME

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