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Curr Opin Neurobiol. 2017 Jun;44:20-27. doi: 10.1016/j.conb.2017.02.012. Epub 2017 Mar 6.

Sculpting memory during sleep: concurrent consolidation and forgetting.

Author information

1
Institute of Behavioural Neuroscience, Department of Experimental Psychology, Division of Psychology and Language Science, University College London, London, United Kingdom; Institute of Medical Psychology and Behavioral Neurobiology, University of Tübingen, Tübingen, Germany. Electronic address: g.feld@ucl.ac.uk.
2
Institute of Medical Psychology and Behavioral Neurobiology, University of Tübingen, Tübingen, Germany; Centre for Integrative Neuroscience, University of Tübingen, Tübingen, Germany. Electronic address: jan.born@uni-tuebingen.de.

Abstract

There is compelling evidence that sleep actively supports the formation of long-lasting memory representations. Experimental cuing of memories proved that neural replay of representations during sleep plays a causal role for this consolidation, which has also been shown to promote neocortical synaptic plasticity and spine formation. Concurrently, sleep has been proposed to facilitate forgetting through processes of synaptic renormalisation. This view received indirect support by findings in humans of sleep enhancing TMS-evoked plasticity and capabilities for encoding new information. First direct behavioural evidence of sleep inducing forgetting has only recently emerged after encoding large amounts of stimuli in adults. We propose forgetting complements sleep-dependent consolidation and facilitates gist abstraction especially at high memory loads, when reactivation-based consolidation reaches capacity limits.

PMID:
28278432
DOI:
10.1016/j.conb.2017.02.012
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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