Cookies on this website
We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you click 'Continue' we will assume that you are happy to receive all cookies and you will not see this message again. Click 'Find out more' for information on how to change your cookie settings.

Sleep entails a disconnection from the external environment. By and large, sensory stimuli do not trigger behavioral responses and are not consciously perceived as they usually are in wakefulness. Traditionally, sleep disconnection was ascribed to a thalamic "gate," which would prevent signal propagation along ascending sensory pathways to primary cortical areas. Here, we compared single-unit and LFP responses in core auditory cortex as freely moving rats spontaneously switched between wakefulness and sleep states. Despite robust differences in baseline neuronal activity, both the selectivity and the magnitude of auditory-evoked responses were comparable across wakefulness, Nonrapid eye movement (NREM) and rapid eye movement (REM) sleep (pairwise differences <8% between states). The processing of deviant tones was also compared in sleep and wakefulness using an oddball paradigm. Robust stimulus-specific adaptation (SSA) was observed following the onset of repetitive tones, and the strength of SSA effects (13-20%) was comparable across vigilance states. Thus, responses in core auditory cortex are preserved across sleep states, suggesting that evoked activity in primary sensory cortices is driven by external physical stimuli with little modulation by vigilance state. We suggest that sensory disconnection during sleep occurs at a stage later than primary sensory areas.

Original publication

DOI

10.1093/cercor/bht328

Type

Journal article

Journal

Cereb Cortex

Publication Date

05/2015

Volume

25

Pages

1362 - 1378

Keywords

NREM sleep, REM sleep, auditory cortex, oddball, rat, single unit, Acoustic Stimulation, Adaptation, Physiological, Animals, Auditory Cortex, Behavior, Animal, Electromyography, Electrophysiology, Evoked Potentials, Auditory, Male, Rats, Sleep, Sleep Stages, Sleep, REM, Wakefulness