Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Sound stimulation during sleep can enhance memory

Date:
April 11, 2013
Source:
Cell Press
Summary:
Slow oscillations in brain activity, which occur during so-called slow-wave sleep, are critical for retaining memories. Researchers have found that playing sounds synchronized to the rhythm of the slow brain oscillations of people who are sleeping enhances these oscillations and boosts their memory.

Slow oscillations in brain activity, which occur during so-called slow-wave sleep, are critical for retaining memories. Researchers reporting online April 11 in the Cell Press journal Neuron have found that playing sounds synchronized to the rhythm of the slow brain oscillations of people who are sleeping enhances these oscillations and boosts their memory. This demonstrates an easy and noninvasive way to influence human brain activity to improve sleep and enhance memory.
Credit: Neuron, Ngo et al.

Slow oscillations in brain activity, which occur during so-called slow-wave sleep, are critical for retaining memories. Researchers reporting online April 11 in the Cell Press journal Neuron have found that playing sounds synchronized to the rhythm of the slow brain oscillations of people who are sleeping enhances these oscillations and boosts their memory. This demonstrates an easy and noninvasive way to influence human brain activity to improve sleep and enhance memory.

"The beauty lies in the simplicity to apply auditory stimulation at low intensities -- an approach that is both practical and ethical, if compared for example with electrical stimulation -- and therefore portrays a straightforward tool for clinical settings to enhance sleep rhythms," says coauthor Dr. Jan Born, of the University of Tόbingen, in Germany.

Dr. Born and his colleagues conducted their tests on 11 individuals on different nights, during which they were exposed to sound stimulations or to sham stimulations. When the volunteers were exposed to stimulating sounds that were in sync with the brain's slow oscillation rhythm, they were better able to remember word associations they had learned the evening before. Stimulation out of phase with the brain's slow oscillation rhythm was ineffective.

"Importantly, the sound stimulation is effective only when the sounds occur in synchrony with the ongoing slow oscillation rhythm during deep sleep. We presented the acoustic stimuli whenever a slow oscillation "up state" was upcoming, and in this way we were able to strengthen the slow oscillation, showing higher amplitude and occurring for longer periods," explains Dr. Born.

The researchers suspect that this approach might also be used more generally to improve sleep. "Moreover, it might be even used to enhance other brain rhythms with obvious functional significance -- like rhythms that occur during wakefulness and are involved in the regulation of attention," says Dr. Born.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Cell Press. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Hong-Viet V. Ngo, Thomas Martinetz, Jan Born, Matthias Mφlle. Auditory Closed-Loop Stimulation of the Sleep Slow Oscillation Enhances Memory. Neuron, 2013 DOI: 10.1016/j.neuron.2013.03.006

Cite This Page:

Cell Press. "Sound stimulation during sleep can enhance memory." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 11 April 2013. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/04/130411123850.htm>.
Cell Press. (2013, April 11). Sound stimulation during sleep can enhance memory. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 23, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/04/130411123850.htm
Cell Press. "Sound stimulation during sleep can enhance memory." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/04/130411123850.htm (accessed July 23, 2014).

Share This




More Mind & Brain News

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Why Do People Believe We Only Use 10 Percent Of Our Brains?

Why Do People Believe We Only Use 10 Percent Of Our Brains?

Newsy (July 22, 2014) — The new sci-fi thriller "Lucy" is making people question whether we really use all our brainpower. But, as scientists have insisted for years, we do. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Do Obese Women Have 'Food Learning Impairment'?

Do Obese Women Have 'Food Learning Impairment'?

Newsy (July 18, 2014) — Yale researchers tested 135 men and women, and it was only obese women who were deemed to have "impaired associative learning." Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Does Mixing Alcohol and Energy Drinks Boost Urge To Drink?

Does Mixing Alcohol and Energy Drinks Boost Urge To Drink?

Newsy (July 18, 2014) — A new study suggests that mixing alcohol with energy drinks makes you want to keep the party going. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Pot Cooking Class Teaches Responsible Eating

Pot Cooking Class Teaches Responsible Eating

AP (July 18, 2014) — Following the nationwide trend of eased restrictions on marijuana use, pot edibles are growing in popularity. One Boston-area cooking class is teaching people how to eat pot responsibly. (July 18) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins