Why We Nap pp 102-117 | Cite as

Beyond Circadian Regulation: Ultradian Components of Sleep-Wake Cycles

  • Peretz Lavie


Abundant evidence indicates that endogenous cycles of arousal include both circadian and ultradian components (see Lavie, 1985, 1989a, b). The circadian and ultradian cycles interact with homeostatic regulatory processes to determine the tendency to fall asleep at different times of the day. Studies conducted on humans isolated in time-free environments have greatly advanced our knowledge and understanding of the circadian regulating system. These studies have led to several theories explaining the sleep-wake cycle and its interaction with the environment, which were exclusively based on circadian oscillators and homeostatic principles (Wever, 1975; Daan et al., 1984; Kronauer et al., 1982).


Sleep Deprivation NREM Sleep Circadian Oscillator Nocturnal Sleep Ultradian Rhythm 
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© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1992

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  • Peretz Lavie

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