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Sleep Med Rev. 2010 Jun;14(3):151-60. doi: 10.1016/j.smrv.2009.07.002. Epub 2009 Aug 29.

PERIOD3, circadian phenotypes, and sleep homeostasis.

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  • 1Surrey Sleep Research Centre, Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences, University of Surrey, Guildford, GU2 7XP, UK. d.j.dijk@surrey.ac.uk

Abstract

Circadian rhythmicity and sleep homeostasis contribute to sleep phenotypes and sleep-wake disorders, some of the genetic determinants of which are emerging. Approximately 10% of the population are homozygous for the 5-repeat allele (PER3(5/5)) of a variable number tandem repeat polymorphism in the clock gene PERIOD3 (PER3). We review recent data on the effects of this polymorphism on sleep-wake regulation. PER3(5/5) are more likely to show morning preference, whereas homozygosity for the four-repeat allele (PER3(4/4)) associates with evening preferences. The association between sleep timing and the circadian rhythms of melatonin and PER3 RNA in leukocytes is stronger in PER3(5/5) than in PER3(4/4). EEG alpha activity in REM sleep, theta/alpha activity during wakefulness and slow wave activity in NREM sleep are elevated in PER3(5/5). PER3(5/5) show a greater cognitive decline, and a greater reduction in fMRI-assessed brain responses to an executive task, in response to total sleep deprivation. These effects are most pronounced during the late circadian night/early morning hours, i.e., approximately 0-4h after the crest of the melatonin rhythm. We interpret the effects of the PER3 polymorphism within the context of a conceptual model in which higher homeostatic sleep pressure in PER3(5/5) through feedback onto the circadian pacemaker modulates the amplitude of diurnal variation in performance. These findings highlight the interrelatedness of circadian rhythmicity and sleep homeostasis.

Copyright 2009 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

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PMID:
19716732
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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