To elucidate the mechanisms and significance of sleep with short-sleeping mice

People spend approximately one-third of their life sleeping. Why sleep is compulsory for human life and cannot be avoided, however, remains unclear. It is important to understand why sleep is necessary and how sleep is controlled – not only to elucidate physiological behavior but also to enhance our quality of life.

Recently, in the course of analyzing sleep-wake regulation by the reward system, we accidentally created mice that require an extremely low amount of sleep (Takata Y, et al, J Neurosci, 38(47):10080-10092, 2018). Using multiple “short sleep” models, including this novel mouse model, we study the effect of short sleep on other physiological functions in the body to understand the significance of sleep. We also study the neural mechanisms of short sleep to clarify the control mechanisms of sleep. 


 睡眠の研究が進まない理由の一つは、適切なモデル動物が少ないためです。我々は最近、睡眠量が極端に少ないマウスを偶然創り出しました(Takata Y, et al, J Neurosci, 38(47):10080-10092, 2018)。我々は、このマウスを含む複数の“短眠”モデルを用いて、短眠が生体に与える影響を明らかにし、睡眠の意義の理解を目指します。その一方で、短眠が作られる仕組みを研究し、睡眠制御メカニズム解明に挑みます。これまでに全く知られていなかったメカニズムが対象になるため、新規の睡眠改善薬などの開発につながる可能性があります。

(Ablation of VMP GABAergic neurons reduces sleep)