Talking Sleep Season 6 | Episode 2

Sleep and Alzheimer’s disease

DR. BRENDAN LUCEY, GUEST

We routinely see patients with dementia in our sleep clinics but often do not meet them until they present with a sleep complaint such as insomnia or obstructive sleep apnea. We know that sleep and dementia have a bidirectional relationship. Is there a way to identify those who are at higher risk of dementia and intervene earlier? Is there a polysomnographic fingerprint? Should polysomnography be performed in those who are felt to be at higher risk of dementia? How can we, as sleep clinicians, potentially impact the course of dementia? Are there special considerations for our patients who have dementia and a comorbid sleep disorder? Dr. Brendan Lucey help us explore these issues further.

Brendan Lucey, MD, MSCI, is a professor of neurology and sleep medicine section head at Washington University in St. Louis. He received his undergraduate degree at the University of Vermont and his medical degree from the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. Following medical school, Dr. Lucey completed his neurology residency at Washington University and a clinical neurophysiology fellowship at Brigham and Women’s Hospital. His current research interests are in sleep, aging, and Alzheimer’s disease. The Lucey Lab focuses on studying the potential of sleep interventions to prevent or delay the onset of Alzheimer’s disease.

Episode Resources

  1. Ferini-Strambi L, Liguori C, Lucey BP, et al. Role of sleep in neurodegeneration: the consensus report of the 5th Think Tank World Sleep Forum. Neurol Sci. 2024;45(2):749-767. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10072-023-07232-7
  2. Pulver RL, Kronberg E, Medenblik LM, et al. Mapping sleep’s oscillatory events as a biomarker of Alzheimer’s disease. Alzheimers Dement. 2024;20(1):301-315. https://doi.org/10.1002/alz.13420
  3. Liu H, Barthélemy NR, Ovod V, et al. Acute sleep loss decreases CSF-to-blood clearance of Alzheimer’s disease biomarkers. Alzheimers Dement. 2023;19(7):3055-3064. https://doi.org/10.1002/alz.12930
  4. Naismith SL, Leng Y, Palmer JR, Lucey BP. Age differences in the association between sleep and Alzheimer’s disease biomarkers in the EPAD cohort. Alzheimers Dement (Amst). 2022;14(1):e12380. https://doi.org/10.1002/dad2.12380