Friday, June 24, 2011

Exciting! Sleep switch found in fruit flies

20 cells in the brains of fruit flies controls when and how long the flies sleep.

Slumber induced through this sleep switch was essential to the creation of long-term memory, directly proving a connection between memory and sleep that scientists have long suspected.

induced sleep state so far appears to be very similar to spontaneous sleep

That means we can manipulate these cells to explore a whole new realm of questions about the purposes of sleep.

Such studies might one day lead us to more natural ways of inducing sleep in humans."

sleep itself was important for the consolidation of memory

Sleep switch found in fruit flies

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