May 24, 2014

Stress, arousal, and sleep

Current Topics in Behavioral Neurosciences
Larry D SanfordPeter Meerlo

Abstract

Stress is considered to be an important cause of disrupted sleep and insomnia. However, controlled and experimental studies in rodents indicate that effects of stress on sleep-wake regulation are complex and may strongly depend on the nature of the stressor. While most stressors are associated with at least a brief period of arousal and wakefulness, the subsequent amount and architecture of recovery sleep can vary dramatically across conditions even though classical markers of acute stress such as corticosterone are virtually the same. Sleep after stress appears to be highly influenced by situational variables including whether the stressor was controllable and/or predictable, whether the individual had the possibility to learn and adapt, and by the relative resilience and vulnerability of the individual experiencing stress. There are multiple brain regions and neurochemical systems linking stress and sleep, and the specific balance and interactions between these systems may ultimately determine the alterations in sleep-wake architecture. Factors that appear to play an important role in stress-induced wakefulness and sleep changes include various monominergic neurotransmitters, hypocretins, corticotropin releasing factor, and p...Continue Reading

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Mentioned in this Paper

Corticosterone Assay
Corticotropin Releasing Hormone Measurement
Adrenal Cortex Diseases
Brain
Fetishism (Psychiatric)
Sleep Disorders, Circadian Rhythm
Prl
Neuronal Plasticity
Structure of Locus Ceruleus
Sleeplessness

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