The Overnight Retention of Novel Metaphors Associates With Slow Oscillation–Spindle Coupling but Not With Respiratory Phase at Encoding

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Abstract

Accumulating evidence emphasizes the relevance of oscillatory synchrony in memory consolidation during sleep. Sleep spindles promote memory retention, especially when occurring in the depolarized upstate of slow oscillation (SO). A less studied topic is the inter-spindle synchrony, i.e. the temporal overlap and phasic coherence between spindles perceived in different electroencephalography channels. In this study, we examined how synchrony between SOs and spindles, as well as between simultaneous spindles, is associated with the retention of novel verbal metaphors. Moreover, we combined the encoding of the metaphors with respiratory phase (inhalation/exhalation) with the aim of modulating the strength of memorized items, as previous studies have shown that inhalation entrains neural activity, thereby benefiting memory in a waking condition. In the current study, 27 young adults underwent a two-night mixed-design study with a 12-h delayed memory task during both sleep and waking conditions. As expected, we found better retention over the delay containing sleep, and this outcome was strongly associated with the timing of SO–spindle coupling. However, no associations were observed regarding inter-spindle synchrony or respiratory phase. These findings contribute to a better understanding of the importance of SO–spindle coupling for memory. In contrast, the observed lack of association with inter-spindle synchrony may emphasize the local nature of spindle-related plasticity.
Original languageFinnish
JournalFrontiers in Behavioral Neuroscience
Volume2021
Issue number15
ISSN1662-5153
Publication statusPublished - 31 Aug 2021
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed

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