A metabolic–transcriptional network links sleep and cellular energetics in the brain

Invited Review


This review proposes a mechanistic link between cellular metabolic status, transcriptional regulatory changes and sleep. Sleep loss is associated with changes in cellular metabolic status in the brain. Metabolic sensors responsive to cellular metabolic status regulate the circadian clock transcriptional network. Modifications of the transcriptional activity of circadian clock genes affect sleep/wake state changes. Changes in sleep state reverse sleep loss-induced changes in cellular metabolic status. It is thus proposed that the regulation of circadian clock genes by cellular metabolic sensors is a critical intermediate step in the link between cellular metabolic status and sleep. Studies of this regulatory relationship may offer insights into the function of sleep at the cellular level.


Nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide Adenosine triphosphate Slow wave activity Sleep Circadian Adenosine monophosphate-activated protein kinase Glycogen Sirtuin Poly(ADP)ribosyl polymerase Peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor 



Non-rapid eye movement sleep


Slow wave activity




Adenosine triphosphate


Adenosine diphosphate


Adenosine monophosphate


Adenosine monophosphate-activated protein kinase






Nicotine adenine dinucleotide


Histone deacetylase


Poly ADP-ribose polymerase


Glycogen synthase kinase 3b


Peroxisome proliferator-activated receptors


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© Springer-Verlag 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.WWAMI Medical Education Program and Department Of Veterinary Comparative Anatomy, Pharmacology and PhysiologyWashington State UniversitySpokaneUSA

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