Sleep Instability in Aging Is Driven by Hyperexcitable Neural Circuits

BrainPost, 1 March 2022

Sleep quality is strongly linked with cognitive function and has been shown to decline with age. However, the mechanisms responsible for sleep instability are unknown. One suggested mechanism is the emergence of increased excitability of arousal-promoting neural circuits (which keep us awake) as we get older, which disrupt sleep stability. The activity of hypocretin—also called orexin—neurons is strongly associated with wakefulness and is responsible for initiating and maintaining an awake state. Read more.