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Alejandro Osorio-Forero

Neuroscience Symposium

Date 17 March 2023
Research group Van Someren
Location Amsterdam
Program 4:00 p.m - Translating arousal: Locus Coeruleus involvement in hyperarousal during restless sleep
4:45 p.m - Discussion and Drinks

Host: Eus van Someren

Speaker: Alejandro Osorio-Forero

Title: Translating arousal: Locus Coeruleus involvement in hyperarousal during restless sleep


One-third (30 – 36%) of the population is affected by at least one symptom of insomnia. These symptoms have short- and long-term negative consequences that represent a personal and economic burden to society. The prognosis and treatment response of insomnia are poor, at least partially due to a lack of understanding of the mechanisms underlying these symptoms.

Hyperarousal, a transdiagnostic set of symptoms across multiple psychiatric and sleep disorders, including insomnia, is a key determining factor for the disorders’ severity, prognosis, and treatment response. Thus, systems regulating arousal are promising for understanding the mechanisms underlying insomnia symptoms.

The locus coeruleus (LC) is the brain’s largest noradrenergic (NE) nucleus. Its activity is commonly associated with attention, stress, and arousal regulation during wakefulness. Most recently, the LC-NE system has also been linked to the modulation of some of the fundamental mechanisms of sleep, such as stereotypical brain rhythms and sensory arousability during non-rapid eye movements (NREM) sleep. In this talk, I will describe the latest published and unpublished observations from the group of Prof. Anita Lüthi at Lausanne University related to the LC-NE control of sleep and the perspective work linking
these observations with theoretical mechanisms underlying the hyperarousal model of insomnia in the Sleep & Cognition group at the NIN.

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