Increased secretion of ACTH during sleep occurs in the early morning hours, at a time when REM sleep is maximal (Weitzman et al. 1966, Mandell et al. 1966, Rubin et al. 1969, Roffwarg et al. 1970). Increased secretion of growth hormone, on the other hand, occurs primarily in the first few hours after sleep onset and is closely related to slow-wave (stage 3–4) sleep (Takahashi et al. 1968, Honda et al. 1969, Parker et al. 1969, Sassin et al. 1969a, Mace et al. 1970). The release of ACTH can be dissociated from REM sleep by acute sleep-wake reversal (Weitzman et al. 1968), but growth hormone release follows intimately the time of onset of slow-wave sleep (Sassin et al. 1969b, Karacan et al. 1970) and is not alterable by manipulations which affect growth hormone during waking hours (Vander-laan et al. 1970, Parker and Rossman 1971, Zir et al. 1971). The possibility that related neural mechanisms control both sleep patterns and the secretion of some anterior pituitary hormones is enhanced by evidence that biogenic amines have neurotransmitter roles both in sleep (Jouvet 1968) and in the secretion by the hypothalamus of pituitary hormone releasing and inhibiting factors (Wurtman 1971). The investigation of other pituitary hormones during sleep is thus warranted, and we report herein a study of luteinizing hormone (LH, ICSH) and follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) release during sleep in normal young men.
Rechtschaffen, A. and Kales, A. (Eds) (1968): A Manual of Standardized Terminology, Techniques and Scoring System for Sleep Stages of Human Subjects. Public Health Service, U.S. Government Printing Office, Washington, D.C.Google Scholar
Roffwarg, H. P., Sachar, E. J. and Finkelstein, J. (1970): Psychophysiol.7, 323.Google Scholar