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Functional Anatomy of the Sleep-Wakefulness Cycle: Wakefulness

  • Fernando Reinoso-Suárez
  • Isabel de Andrés
  • Miguel Garzón

Part of the Advances in Anatomy, Embryology and Cell Biology book series (ADVSANAT, volume 208)

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xii
  2. Fernando Reinoso-Suárez, Isabel de Andrés, Miguel Garzón
    Pages 1-4
  3. Fernando Reinoso-Suárez, Isabel de Andrés, Miguel Garzón
    Pages 63-109
  4. Back Matter
    Pages 111-130

About this book

Introduction

Wakefulness is a necessary, active and periodic brain state, with a circadian and homeostatic regulation and precisely meshed with other states into the sleep-wakefulness cycle. This monograph first overviews the historical background and current understanding of the neuronal systems generating and/or maintaining the various phases of the sleep-wakefulness cycle. A key cellular correlate of wakefulness is a sustained mode of high activity and plasticity in the closely intertwined circuits of the cortex and thalamus, the “thalamo-cerebral cortex unity”. The second part of the monograph provides an in-depth review of recent advances on the anatomy, physiology and neurochemistry of the neuronal groups known to drive the “thalamo-cerebral cortex unity” into their wakefulness mode, and to keep them in such mode. Interestingly, these neuronal groups are located in the brainstem, hypothalamus or basal forebrain; collectively, they are known as the “ascending reticular activating system”. Neurotransmitter-specific pathways arising from these neuronal groups target the thalamus and cortex. The various neurotransmitters interact on postsynaptic cortical or thalamic cells to fine-tune their excitability and plasticity, exerting powerful influences on the perceptual and cognitive processes as well as attentional, emotional, motivational, behavioral and arousal states. In turn, corticofugal axons reach the neuronal groups of the “ascending reticular activating system”, and thus the awake “thalamo-cerebral cortex unity” is in position to modulate their activity

Keywords

ascending reticular activating system ascending reticular activating system awareness basal forebrain cognitive process cognitive process coma consciousness dorsal mesopontine tegmentum light period light period retinal stimulation retinal stimulation thalamo-cerebral cortex unit thalamo-cerebral cortex unit thalamo-cerebral cortex unity

Authors and affiliations

  • Fernando Reinoso-Suárez
    • 1
  • Isabel de Andrés
    • 2
  • Miguel Garzón
    • 3
  1. 1., Departamento de Anatomía Histología y NeUniversidad Autónoma de MadridMadridSpain
  2. 2., Departamento de Anatomía Histología y NeUniversidad Autónoma de MadridMadridSpain
  3. 3., Departamento de Anatomía Histología y NeUniversidad Autónoma de MadridMadridSpain

Bibliographic information

  • DOI https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-642-14626-8
  • Copyright Information Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2011
  • Publisher Name Springer, Berlin, Heidelberg
  • eBook Packages Medicine
  • Print ISBN 978-3-642-14625-1
  • Online ISBN 978-3-642-14626-8
  • Series Print ISSN 0301-5556
  • Buy this book on publisher's site
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