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Necessity of Sleep for Motor Gist Learning in Mice

Authors
  • Pettibone, Ward D.
  • Kam, Korey
  • Chen, Rebecca K.
  • Varga, Andrew W.
Type
Published Article
Journal
Frontiers in Neuroscience
Publisher
Frontiers Media SA
Publication Date
Apr 05, 2019
Volume
13
Identifiers
DOI: 10.3389/fnins.2019.00293
PMID: 31024231
PMCID: PMC6459967
Source
PubMed Central
Keywords
License
Unknown

Abstract

With respect to behavior, the term memory “consolidation” has canonically been used to describe increased fidelity during testing to a learned behavior shaped during training. While the sleeping brain appears to certainly aid in consolidation by this definition for a variety of memories, including motor memories, growing evidence suggests that sleep allows for much more flexible use of the information encountered during prior wakefulness. Sleep has been shown to augment the extraction of gist or patterns from wake experience in human subjects, but this has been difficult to recapitulate in animal models owing to the semantic requirements in many such tasks. Here we establish a model of motor gist learning in mice in which two bouts of exclusive forward running on the rotarod significantly augments the first experience of exclusive backward running. This augmentation does not occur if sleep is disrupted following the forward running template behavior or if a period of natural wakefulness follows one of the two bouts of exclusive forward running. This suggests that sleep is required for the extraction of the motor gist of forward running to apply to backward running.

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