In this episode we ask Gina Poe, a sleep scientist from UCLA, about her seminal work on both REM and non-REM sleep. We talk about the role of memory replay in REM, how to measure such replay in rats, as well as the ways in which REM impacts upon emotional representations, and may even help us to combat post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). We also discuss the importance of sleep spindles for updating conceptual knowledge. Finally, we describe Professor Poe's ground-breaking findings on local sleep and how these may change the face of sleep research in the future.
Produced by: Eniko Simo
See Professor Poe's faculty profile:
Find the research papers mentioned in this episode here:
EEG = Electroencephalography is an electrophysiological monitoring method for non-invasively recording the electrical activity of the brain via electrodes placed on the scalp.
Heterosynaptic plasticity = when synaptic pathways that were not directly stimulated themselves undergo changes (synaptic plasticity) as a result of neighbouring synapses being stimulated. Often this means that as one pathway is used and strengthened, an unused neighbouring pathway gets weakened.
PTSD = Post-traumatic stress disorder is a mental health condition that's triggered by a terrifying event. Symptoms may include flashbacks, nightmares, and severe anxiety, as well as uncontrollable thoughts about the event.
Schema = a cognitive framework or concept that helps organize and interpret information.
Spindle = distinct brain waves with frequency 11-16 Hz (measured with EEG).
Theta = 4-8 Hz brainwave frequencies.