• The 163rd WPI-IIIS seminar

    11 27, 2019
    Date Wednesday, November 27, 2019
    Time 12:00 -13:00
    Venue 1F Auditorium, IIIS Building, University of Tsukuba
    Access Take a bus bound for "Tsukuba Daigaku Chuo" or the "University Loop-line On-campus Bus [Tsukuba Daigaku Junkan Bus]" and get off at Oikoshi Gakusei Shukusha Mae
    Speaker Dr. Henrik Bringmann
    Full Professor of Animal Physiology/ Neurophysiology (W3), University of Marburg, Germany
    Subject “Sleep: A worm’s eye view”
    Summary Sleep is conserved from jellyfish to humans and can thus be studied in simple model systems. Perhaps the simplest yet molecularly accessible model system that sleeps is C. elegans. How and why does a simple animal such as “the worm” sleep? The answers to this question can shed light on the fundamental reasons for how and why we sleep. We are applying a combination of genetics, functional imaging, optogenetics, and physiological analysis to find out how and why C. elegans sleeps. We showed that C. elegans requires a single sleep-active neuron called RIS to induce sleep. RIS is controlled by upstream circuits that measure and translate wakefulness into sleep. Cellular stress activates RIS through EGFR signaling and through the stress-sensing ALA neuron, thus increasing sleep. Without sleep, larvae show an increased progression of aging phenotypes, that decreases the rate of survival. Thus, sleep in C. elegans is ultimately simplified: It requires a single sleep-active neuron that is controlled by upstream circuits and responds to sleep need. Sleep appears to serve basic functions that include counteracting the progression of aging phenotypes.

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