PHILADELPHIA – If you ever argued with your mother when she told you to get some sleep after studying for an exam instead of pulling an all-nighter, you owe her an apology, because it turns out she's right. And now, scientists are beginning to understand why. In research published this week in Marcos Frank, PhD, Assistant Professor of Neuroscience, at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, postdoctoral researcher Sara Aton, PhD, and colleagues describe for the first time how cellular changes in the sleeping brain promote the formation of memories. Penn study shows why sleep is needed to form memories
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Most people only think that there is one way to sleep: Go to sleep at night for 6-8 hours, wake up in the morning, stay awake for 16-18 hours and then repeat. Actually, that is called a monophasic sleep cycle , which is only 1 of 5 major sleep cycles that have been used successfully throughout history. The other 4 are considered polyphasic sleep cycles due to the multiple number of naps they require each day.