Neuroscience Bulletin

, Volume 32, Issue 5, pp 503–504 | Cite as

Sandman is a Sleep Switch in Drosophila

  • Yufeng Pan
Research Highlight

Sleep is a universal process with vital functions. Animals deprived of sleep for a long period of time will die. Despite its crucial functions, fundamental questions about sleep remain unexplored. For instance, why do animals sleep since it disconnects animals from the external world and exposes them to danger (we really do not know!)? What is the switch between sleep and waking, if there is one (we may be beginning to understand this!)?

It has been found that sleep is controlled by two systems: the circadian clock and sleep homeostasis. The former determines the right time to go to sleep by synchronizing the internal circadian clock with the external world. Substantial progress has been made on the genetic and neuronal control of the circadian clock in the fruit fly Drosophila melanogaster [1], which was later shown to be similar in mammalian systems [2]. The latter, sleep homeostasis, measures internal “sleep pressure” (again, we do not know exactly what sleep pressure is!) and...


Circadian Clock Artificial Activation Fire Action Potential Circadian Clock Gene Gene CG8713 
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Copyright information

© Shanghai Institutes for Biological Sciences, CAS and Springer Science+Business Media Singapore 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Institute of Life SciencesSoutheast UniversityNanjingChina

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