Recent articles in Nature Neuroscience have brought attention to the relationship between sleep and memory. A study published online this week shows that children showed greater gains in explicit sequence knowledge after sleep than adults when sleep followed implicit training on a motor sequence. “The formation of explicit knowledge appears to be a very specific ability of childhood sleep,” study author Dr. Ines Wilhelm said in a news release.
A widely reported study published online in January presented evidence for a model in which age-related brain atrophy diminishes slow wave activity, which impairs long-term memory. “What we have discovered is a dysfunctional pathway that helps explain the relationship between brain deterioration, sleep disruption and memory loss as we get older,” senior author Matthew Walker, PhD, told UPI. In a February issue focused on memory, a review by Walker and Robert Stickgold, PhD, also suggests that “memory triage” lies at the heart of a sleep-dependent memory processing system.