Brain Sci. 2013, 3(2), 800-820; doi:10.3390/brainsci3020800
Review

From Neural Plate to Cortical Arousal—A Neuronal Network Theory of Sleep Derived from in Vitro “Model” Systems for Primordial Patterns of Spontaneous Bioelectric Activity in the Vertebrate Central Nervous System

email
Received: 11 March 2013; in revised form: 15 April 2013 / Accepted: 6 May 2013 / Published: 22 May 2013
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sleep and Brain Development)
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
Abstract: In the early 1960s intrinsically generated widespread neuronal discharges were discovered to be the basis for the earliest motor behavior throughout the animal kingdom. The pattern generating system is in fact programmed into the developing nervous system, in a regionally specific manner, already at the early neural plate stage. Such rhythmically modulated phasic bursts were next discovered to be a general feature of developing neural networks and, largely on the basis of experimental interventions in cultured neural tissues, to contribute significantly to their morpho-physiological maturation. In particular, the level of spontaneous synchronized bursting is homeostatically regulated, and has the effect of constraining the development of excessive network excitability. After birth or hatching, this “slow-wave” activity pattern becomes sporadically suppressed in favor of sensory oriented “waking” behaviors better adapted to dealing with environmental contingencies. It nevertheless reappears periodically as “sleep” at several species-specific points in the diurnal/nocturnal cycle. Although this “default” behavior pattern evolves with development, its essential features are preserved throughout the life cycle, and are based upon a few simple mechanisms which can be both experimentally demonstrated and simulated by computer modeling. In contrast, a late onto- and phylogenetic aspect of sleep, viz., the intermittent “paradoxical” activation of the forebrain so as to mimic waking activity, is much less well understood as regards its contribution to brain development. Some recent findings dealing with this question by means of cholinergically induced “aroused” firing patterns in developing neocortical cell cultures, followed by quantitative electrophysiological assays of immediate and longterm sequelae, will be discussed in connection with their putative implications for sleep ontogeny.
Keywords: sleep ontogeny; tissue culture; multi-electrode recording; spontaneous neuronal activity; cholinergic activation; synchronized bursting; “REM-sleep” hypothesis; forebrain; hindbrain
PDF Full-text Download PDF Full-Text [2707 KB, uploaded 22 May 2013 12:20 CEST]

Export to BibTeX |
EndNote


MDPI and ACS Style

Corner, M.A. From Neural Plate to Cortical Arousal—A Neuronal Network Theory of Sleep Derived from in Vitro “Model” Systems for Primordial Patterns of Spontaneous Bioelectric Activity in the Vertebrate Central Nervous System. Brain Sci. 2013, 3, 800-820.

AMA Style

Corner MA. From Neural Plate to Cortical Arousal—A Neuronal Network Theory of Sleep Derived from in Vitro “Model” Systems for Primordial Patterns of Spontaneous Bioelectric Activity in the Vertebrate Central Nervous System. Brain Sciences. 2013; 3(2):800-820.

Chicago/Turabian Style

Corner, Michael A. 2013. "From Neural Plate to Cortical Arousal—A Neuronal Network Theory of Sleep Derived from in Vitro “Model” Systems for Primordial Patterns of Spontaneous Bioelectric Activity in the Vertebrate Central Nervous System." Brain Sci. 3, no. 2: 800-820.

Brain Sci. EISSN 2076-3425 Published by MDPI AG, Basel, Switzerland RSS E-Mail Table of Contents Alert