Skip to main content
Experimental sleep fragmentation impairs attentional set-shifting in a rodent model of obstructive sleep apnea
  • J.G. McCoy
  • Jaime L. Tartar, Nova Southeastern University
  • A.C. Bebis
  • M.M. Thakkar
  • J.T. McKenna
  • M.G. Baxter
  • R.W. McCarley
  • J. McGaughy
  • R.E. Strecker
Document Type
Publication Date
  • sleep deprivation,
  • water maze,
  • hippocampus,
  • sleepiness
Sleep fragmentation is a common symptom in sleep disorders and other medical complaints resulting in excessive daytime sleepiness. The present study seeks to explore the effects of sleep fragmentation on learning and memory in a spatial reference memory task and a spatial working memory task. Fisher/Brown Norway rats lived in custom treadmills designed to induce locomotor activity every 2 minutes throughout a 24 hour period. Separate rats were either on a treadmill schedule that allowed for consolidated sleep or experienced no locomotor activation. Rats were tested in one of two water maze based tests of learning and memory immediately following 24 hours of sleep interruption (SI). Rats tested in a spatial reference memory task (8 massed acquisition trials) with a 24 hour follow-up probe trial to assess memory retention showed no differences in acquisition performance but were impaired on the 24 hour retention of the platform location. In contrast, the performance of rats tested in a spatial working memory task (delayed matching to position task) was not impaired. Therefore, sleepiness induced by SI effectively impairs the recall of spatial reference memories but does not impair spatial reference memory acquisition or spatial working memory in Fischer-Norway rats.
Citation Information
J.G. McCoy, Jaime L. Tartar, A.C. Bebis, M.M. Thakkar, et al.. "Experimental sleep fragmentation impairs attentional set-shifting in a rodent model of obstructive sleep apnea" Sleep Vol. 30 Iss. 1 (2007) p. 52 - 60 ISSN: 0161-8105
Available at: