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Sleep and circadian rhythms: do sleep centers talk back to the clock?

A homeostatic control mechanism that monitors and reacts to the need for sleep has been thought to function independently of the brain's circadian clock in previous studies. Now simultaneous recordings of sleep stages and electrical activity in the suprachiasmatic nucleus in behaving animals reveal feedback from sleep centers to the circadian pacemaker.

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Figure 1: Possible connections between the circadian pacemaker and the sleep/wake control systems.


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Colwell, C., Michel, S. Sleep and circadian rhythms: do sleep centers talk back to the clock?. Nat Neurosci 6, 1005–1006 (2003).

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