Principal investigators: Aaron Norris (WashU Anesthesiology), Erik Herzog (WashU Biology)
Sleep disturbances cause decrements in quality of life, contribute to mental health disorders, and may play a critical role in multiple neurodegenerative diseases. This study aims to define the neurocircuitry involved in circadian regulation of sleep and identify novel key points in this circuitry that can be manipulated to improve sleep function. One key neuropeptide that will be examined in this proposal, dynorphin, has multiple compounds and small molecules in various stages of development. The proposed studies will offer fundamental new insights into the regulation of sleep and will offer novel targets for future development in the treatment f sleep and related disorders.