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Gray Matter Volume Correlates of Sleepiness: A Voxel-Based Morphometry Study in Younger and Older Adults
Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Psychology, Stress Research Institute. Karolinska Institutet, Sweden.
Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Psychology, Stress Research Institute. Karolinska Institutet, Sweden.
Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Psychology, Stress Research Institute. Karolinska Institutet, Sweden.
Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Psychology, Stress Research Institute. Karolinska Institutet, Sweden.
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2020 (English)In: Nature and Science of Sleep, ISSN 1179-1608, Vol. 12, p. 289-298Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Background: Subjectively experienced sleepiness is a problem in society, possibly linked with gray matter (GM) volume. Given a different sleep pattern, aging may affect such associations, possibly due to shrinking brain volume.

Purpose: The purpose of the present study was to investigate the association between subjectively rated sleepiness and GM volume in thalamus, insula, hippocampus, and orbitofrontal cortex of young and older adults, after a normal night’s sleep.

Methods: Eighty-four healthy individuals participated (46 aged 20– 30 years, and 38 aged 65– 75 years). Morphological brain data were collected in a 3T magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scanner. Sleepiness was rated multiple times during the imaging sessions.

Results: In older, relative to younger, adults, clusters within bilateral mid-anterior insular cortex and right thalamus were negatively associated with sleepiness. Adjustment for the immediately preceding total sleep time eliminated the significant associations.

Conclusion: Self-rated momentary sleepiness in a monotonous situation appears to be negatively associated with GM volume in clusters within both thalamus and insula in older individuals, and total sleep time seems to play a role in this association. Possibly, this suggests that larger GM volume in these clusters may be protective against sleepiness in older individuals. This notion needs confirmation in further studies.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2020. Vol. 12, p. 289-298
Keywords [en]
brain imaging, thalamus, insula, sleep, KSS
National Category
Psychology
Research subject
Psychology
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-181678DOI: 10.2147/NSS.S240493ISI: 000535265100001OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-181678DiVA, id: diva2:1431551
Available from: 2020-05-22 Created: 2020-05-22 Last updated: 2022-03-23Bibliographically approved

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Åkerstedt, TorbjörnLekander, MatsNilsonne, GustavTamm, Sandrad'Onofrio, PaoloKecklund, GöranFischer, HåkanSchwarz, Johanna

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Stress Research InstituteBiological psychology
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