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J Neural Eng. 2019 Jun;16(3):036004. doi: 10.1088/1741-2552/ab0933. Epub 2019 Feb 21.

A deep learning approach for real-time detection of sleep spindles.

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Department of Psychiatry, School of Medicine, New York University, New York, NY 10016, United States of America.



Sleep spindles have been implicated in memory consolidation and synaptic plasticity during NREM sleep. Detection accuracy and latency in automatic spindle detection are critical for real-time applications.


Here we propose a novel deep learning strategy (SpindleNet) to detect sleep spindles based on a single EEG channel. While the majority of spindle detection methods are used for off-line applications, our method is well suited for online applications.


Compared with other spindle detection methods, SpindleNet achieves superior detection accuracy and speed, as demonstrated in two publicly available expert-validated EEG sleep spindle datasets. Our real-time detection of spindle onset achieves detection latencies of 150-350 ms (~two-three spindle cycles) and retains excellent performance under low EEG sampling frequencies and low signal-to-noise ratios. SpindleNet has good generalization across different sleep datasets from various subject groups of different ages and species.


SpindleNet is ultra-fast and scalable to multichannel EEG recordings, with an accuracy level comparable to human experts, making it appealing for long-term sleep monitoring and closed-loop neuroscience experiments.

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