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Sleep. 2016 Jan 1;39(1):249-62. doi: 10.5665/sleep.5358.

A Unified Model of Performance: Validation of its Predictions across Different Sleep/Wake Schedules.

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Department of Defense Biotechnology High Performance Computing Software Applications Institute, Telemedicine and Advanced Technology Research Center, US Army Medical Research and Materiel Command, Fort Detrick, MD.
Department of Behavioral Biology, Walter Reed Army Institute of Research, Silver Spring, MD.



Historically, mathematical models of human neurobehavioral performance developed on data from one sleep study were limited to predicting performance in similar studies, restricting their practical utility. We recently developed a unified model of performance (UMP) to predict the effects of the continuum of sleep loss-from chronic sleep restriction (CSR) to total sleep deprivation (TSD) challenges-and validated it using data from two studies of one laboratory. Here, we significantly extended this effort by validating the UMP predictions across a wide range of sleep/wake schedules from different studies and laboratories.


We developed the UMP on psychomotor vigilance task (PVT) lapse data from one study encompassing four different CSR conditions (7 d of 3, 5, 7, and 9 h of sleep/night), and predicted performance in five other studies (from four laboratories), including different combinations of TSD (40 to 88 h), CSR (2 to 6 h of sleep/night), control (8 to 10 h of sleep/night), and nap (nocturnal and diurnal) schedules.


The UMP accurately predicted PVT performance trends across 14 different sleep/wake conditions, yielding average prediction errors between 7% and 36%, with the predictions lying within 2 standard errors of the measured data 87% of the time. In addition, the UMP accurately predicted performance impairment (average error of 15%) for schedules (TSD and naps) not used in model development.


The unified model of performance can be used as a tool to help design sleep/wake schedules to optimize the extent and duration of neurobehavioral performance and to accelerate recovery after sleep loss.


PVT; biomathematical model; chronic sleep restriction; naps; total sleep deprivation; two-process model

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