About this Research Topic
All animal species have developed mechanisms to sleep and rest from wakefulness. Cellular oscillations are synchronized in all animal species in order to adapt to routine fluctuations in environmental conditions, such as the light-darkness transitions, thus having their longest daily period of sleep either during the day (nocturnal species) or during the night (diurnal species) depending on their activity period.
Because the habitual sleep-wakefulness rhythm in all animals is dictated by the master intrinsic clock which generates and maintains the approximately 24-hour circadian rhythm, sleeping problems often coincide with circadian rhythm misalignment and in some cases are in fact circadian rhythm sleep disorders. Among humans, individuals suffering from mood disorders often display disturbances of sleep, metabolism and memory functions. However, it is not known yet in detail how cellular dysfunctions translate into depressed mood and these puzzling mechanisms are still largely unexplored and thus of high scientific interest. An across-species analysis is therefore needed to better unravel the general mechanisms relying on sleep disturbances effects across animals, taking into consideration the different environmental cues to which models are subject.
This Research Topic presents the current research activities on sleep and its contributions to biology, psychology, physiology and medicine. It includes contributions from many distinguished scientists from a range of disciplines. The Research Topic broadly and deeply elucidates the current model for sleep, the molecular components and functional screens for its key mechanisms as well as providing an across-species analysis contributing to broaden our knowledge and focus on animal models for behavioral analysis.
This Research Topic provides a timely view on how disruption in sleep affects mood and may cause metabolic disorders, cognitive impairment and depressive-like behaviors. Any specific method by which the mood-related functions of sleep might be influenced thereby bears therapeutic potential and has a clinical interest.
Keywords: Circadian rythm, Diurnal, Nocturnal, Sleep, Wakefulness
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