Author(s): Machado RB, Suchecki D, Tufik S
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Abstract Numerous studies have evaluated the sleep homeostasis of rats after short- or long-periods of sleep deprivation, but none has assessed the effects of prolonged sleep restriction on the rat's sleep pattern. The purpose of the present study, therefore, was to evaluate the sleep homeostasis of rats under a protocol of chronic sleep restriction. Male Wistar rats were implanted with electrodes for EEG and EMG recordings. Using the single platform method, the animals were submitted to 18 h of sleep restriction, beginning at 16:00 h (lights on at 07:00 h), followed by a 6 h sleep window (from 10:00 h to 16:00 h) for 21 days. Immediately after this period, rats were allowed to sleep freely for 4 days (recovery period). The sleep-wake cycle was recorded throughout the entire experiment and the results showed that during the 6h sleep window there was an increase on the percentage of sleep time, reflected by augmented time in high amplitude slow wave sleep and in paradoxical sleep, when compared to baseline sleep, whereas bouts of awakening longer than 1.5 min were greatly reduced, with the animals exhibiting a monophasic-type sleep pattern. During the deprivation period, paradoxical sleep was abolished. High amplitude slow wave sleep was also greatly affected by the protocol. Nonetheless, one day of recovery was sufficient to restore the normal sleep pattern. These findings indicate that this protocol was capable to induce many changes in the rat's sleep patterns, suggesting that during the 6h sleep window there is a sleep adaptive homeostatic process.
This article was published in Behav Brain Res
and referenced in Anatomy & Physiology: Current Research