Activity-dependent brain-derived neurotrophic factor expression regulates cortistatin-interneurons and sleep behavior

Keri Martinowich, Robert J. Schloesser, Dennisse V. Jimenez, Daniel R. Weinberger, Bai Lu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: Sleep homeostasis is characterized by a positive correlation between sleep length and intensity with the duration of the prior waking period. A causal role for brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) in sleep homeostasis has been suggested, but the underlying mechanisms remain unclear. Cortistatin, a neuropeptide expressed primarily in a subset of cortical GABAergic interneurons, is another molecule implicated in sleep homeostasis. Results: We confirmed that sleep deprivation leads to an increase in cortical cortistatin mRNA expression. Disruption of activity-dependent BDNF expression in a genetically modified mouse line impairs both baseline levels of cortistatin mRNA as well as its levels following sleep deprivation. Disruption of activity-dependent BDNF also leads to a decrease in sleep time during the active (dark) phase. Conclusion: Our studies suggest that regulation of cortistatin-expressing interneurons by activity-dependent BDNF expression may contribute to regulation of sleep behavior.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number11
JournalMolecular Brain
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2011
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Biology
  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience


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