Operation of a Homeostatic Sleep Switch
Diogo Pimentel Department of Physiology, Anatomy and Genetics, University of Oxford, UK
CNC Auditorium (2nd floor, FMUC, Pólo I)
Host: Carlos B. Duarte

“Operation of a Homeostatic Sleep Switch”

Sleep disconnects animals from the external world, at considerable risks and costs that must be offset by a vital benefit. Insight into the nature of this mysterious benefit will likely come from understanding sleep homeostasis: to monitor sleep need, an internal bookkeeper must track physiological changes that are intimately linked to the core function of sleep. In Drosophila, a crucial component of the machinery for sleep homeostasis is a cluster of neurons innervating the dorsal fan-shaped body (dFB) of the central complex. Artificial activation of these cells induces sleep, whereas reductions in excitability cause insomnia. I will present evidence that homeostatic sleep control works by switching these sleep-promoting neurons between active and quiescent states. State switching involves the antagonistic modulation of two identified potassium conductances by the neuromodulator dopamine.
Financiado por Fundos FEDER através do Programa Operacional Factores de Competitividade – COMPETE 2020 e por Fundos Nacionais através da FCT – Fundação para a Ciência e a Tecnologia no âmbito do projecto Estratégico com referência atribuida pelo COMPETE: POCI-01-0145-FEDER-007440

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