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Sleeping to Remember: Uncovering Neural Mechanisms of Memory
Thursday, February 22, 2018

We all understand the general idea that sleep is important for proper functioning of the brain and body. Studies show that good sleep supports enhanced cognitive functions, including memory, creativity, attention, and mood, and promotes healthy bodily functions, including physical stamina, metabolism, and cardiac activity. Recent findings have demonstrated that sleep may be especially important for the transformation of new experiences into long-term memories, a process known as memory consolidation. The UC Irvine Sleep and Cognition (SaC) lab is interested in identifying basic neural mechanisms that are critical for memory consolidation, so that we can 1) understand the function of sleep, 2) reveal the processes of memory, and 3) determine the causal mechanisms of sleep-dependent memory by enhancing or erasing memories through experimental manipulation of brain activity during sleep. In my talk, I will introduce the building blocks of sleep and their relation to memory, as well as identify some of the specific electrophysiological events occurring in the central and autonomic nervous system that appear critical for memory consolidation. I hope to illustrate a dynamic relationship that exists during sleep between different brain areas, as well as between the heart and brain that facilitates the formation and long-term storage of memories.

Time: 4:45 pm
Location: Preston Theater
Sponsor: Mind, Brain, & Behavior Program; Psychology Program
Contact: Tom Hutcheon.
Phone: 845-758-7380

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