Exploring sleep and memory in children and adults
American Academy of Sleep Medicine
Thursday, February 28, 2013
Recent articles in Nature Neuroscience have brought attention to the relationship between sleep and memory. A study published online this week shows that children showed greater gains in explicit sequence knowledge after sleep than adults when sleep followed implicit training on a motor sequence. “The formation of explicit knowledge appears to be a very specific ability of childhood sleep,” study author Dr. Ines Wilhelm said in a news release.
A widely reported study published online in January presented evidence for a model in which age-related brain atrophy diminishes slow wave activity, which impairs long-term memory. “What we have discovered is a dysfunctional pathway that helps explain the relationship between brain deterioration, sleep disruption and memory loss as we get older,” senior author Matthew Walker, PhD, told UPI. In a February issue focused on memory, a review by Walker and Robert Stickgold, PhD, also suggests that “memory triage” lies at the heart of a sleep-dependent memory processing system.