2018 Award Recipients 2018-07-24T18:19:28+00:00

2018 Award Recipients

2018 Physician Scientist Training Award Recipient

Eric Landsness, MD, PhD
Eric Landsness, MD, PhDWashington University
Focal slow wave sleep in brain repair and recovery after stroke

Stroke is the leading cause of adult disability in the US. The purpose of this research is to better understand the role of slow wave sleep (SWS) in post-stroke recovery by using chemogenetics to locally manipulate SWS and track recovery. This has the potential to clarify the basic mechanisms of how SWS regulates neuronal repair and recovery after stroke with the ultimate goal of identifying novel, sleep-based stroke rehabilitation therapies.

2018 Bridge to Success Award Recipients

Thomas Scammell, MD
Thomas Scammell, MDBeth Israel Deaconess Medical Center
Mechanisms of Cataplexy

Many people with narcolepsy have episodes of cataplexy, sudden weakness triggered by positive emotions. The amygdala mediates behavioral responses to emotions, and these experiments will determine if cataplexy is triggered by a specific class of neurons in the central nucleus of the amygdala that activate brainstem pathways that regulate the paralysis of REM sleep. By improving our understanding of cataplexy, this research should bring us closer to better treatments for narcolepsy.

Jag Sunderram, MD
Jag Sunderram, MDRutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School
Exploring mechanisms of OSA in World Trade Center responders

A very high prevalence of obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) has been found in the WTC responder population with an increased risk for OSA in subjects with chronic rhinosinusitis. The present project will examine the impact of upper airway sensory impairment from chronic rhinosinusitis on the development of OSA. In addition, other potential mechanisms for development of OSA will also be examined. The results of this study will help target therapeutic interventions in the future.

2018 Focused Projects Award Recipient – Educational

Yu Sun Bin, MD
Yu Sun Bin, MDUniversity of Sydney
An interdisciplinary sleep and circadian online course for first-year undergraduates

Sleep and circadian science are examples of successful interdisciplinary research and collaboration. Sleep and circadian science are rarely found in undergraduate curricula. This project will develop an online course to introduce sleep and circadian basics to first-year undergraduate students from all disciplinary backgrounds. Students will gain an appreciation of the role of sleep and circadian rhythms in daily life and a recognition of the need for interdisciplinary understanding and multidisciplinary teamwork in today’s complex world.

2018 Focused Projects Award Recipients – Junior Investigator

Nicole Bowles, PhD
Nicole Bowles, PhDOregon Health & Science University
Effect of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) on sleep in humans

Cannabis use is on the rise in the United States with many users asserting improvements in sleep. Yet, clinical evidence that cannabis alters sleep-wake cycles remains unclear. The central hypothesis of the proposed research is that sleep is differentially affected by an acute oral dose of THC in frequent vs. non-cannabis users. This will be assessed by measuring polysomnographically scored sleep before and after exposure to a standard THC dose.

Megan Petrov, PhD
Megan Petrov, PhDArizona State University
Markers of early atherosclerotic progression in insomnia

Evidence suggests that insomnia may generate atherosclerotic development, though few studies have identified early markers of subclinical cardiovascular disease in diagnosed insomnia compared to rigorously-defined good-sleeping controls. We hypothesize in the proposed research that patients with insomnia will have greater endothelial dysfunction, arterial stiffness, and evidence of cardiac structural aberrations than will good sleeping controls. In this study, community-based young adults with diary and actigraphy-assessed insomnia compared to good-sleeping controls will undergo cardiovascular sonography assessment.