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Emotional arousal modulates oscillatory correlates of targeted memory reactivation during NREM, but not REM sleep


Lehmann, Mick; Schreiner, Thomas; Seifritz, Erich; Rasch, Björn (2016). Emotional arousal modulates oscillatory correlates of targeted memory reactivation during NREM, but not REM sleep. Scientific Reports, 6(1):39229.

Abstract

Rapid eye movement (REM) sleep is considered to preferentially reprocess emotionally arousing memories. We tested this hypothesis by cueing emotional vs. neutral memories during REM and NREM sleep and wakefulness by presenting associated verbal memory cues after learning. Here we show that cueing during NREM sleep significantly improved memory for emotional pictures, while no cueing benefit was observed during REM sleep. On the oscillatory level, successful memory cueing during NREM sleep resulted in significant increases in theta and spindle oscillations with stronger responses for emotional than neutral memories. In contrast during REM sleep, solely cueing of neutral (but not emotional) memories was associated with increases in theta activity. Our results do not support a preferential role of REM sleep for emotional memories, but rather suggest that emotional arousal modulates memory replay and consolidation processes and their oscillatory correlates during NREM sleep.

Abstract

Rapid eye movement (REM) sleep is considered to preferentially reprocess emotionally arousing memories. We tested this hypothesis by cueing emotional vs. neutral memories during REM and NREM sleep and wakefulness by presenting associated verbal memory cues after learning. Here we show that cueing during NREM sleep significantly improved memory for emotional pictures, while no cueing benefit was observed during REM sleep. On the oscillatory level, successful memory cueing during NREM sleep resulted in significant increases in theta and spindle oscillations with stronger responses for emotional than neutral memories. In contrast during REM sleep, solely cueing of neutral (but not emotional) memories was associated with increases in theta activity. Our results do not support a preferential role of REM sleep for emotional memories, but rather suggest that emotional arousal modulates memory replay and consolidation processes and their oscillatory correlates during NREM sleep.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:04 Faculty of Medicine > Psychiatric University Hospital Zurich > Clinic for Psychiatry, Psychotherapy, and Psychosomatics
06 Faculty of Arts > Institute of Psychology
Dewey Decimal Classification:150 Psychology
Uncontrolled Keywords:DoktoratPsych Erstautor
Language:English
Date:16 December 2016
Deposited On:14 Sep 2017 13:43
Last Modified:15 Sep 2017 01:04
Publisher:Nature Publishing Group
ISSN:2045-2322
Free access at:Publisher DOI. An embargo period may apply.
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1038/srep39229
PubMed ID:27982120

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