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MemoSleep SIGNED

Longing for a good night's sleep: A memory-based mechanism to improve sleep and cognitive functioning.

Total Cost €


EC-Contrib. €






Project "MemoSleep" data sheet

The following table provides information about the project.


Organization address
address: AVENUE DE L EUROPE 20
postcode: 1700

contact info
title: n.a.
name: n.a.
surname: n.a.
function: n.a.
email: n.a.
telephone: n.a.
fax: n.a.

 Coordinator Country Switzerland [CH]
 Project website
 Total cost 1˙499˙565 €
 EC max contribution 1˙499˙565 € (100%)
 Programme 1. H2020-EU.1.1. (EXCELLENT SCIENCE - European Research Council (ERC))
 Code Call ERC-2015-STG
 Funding Scheme ERC-STG
 Starting year 2016
 Duration (year-month-day) from 2016-09-01   to  2021-08-31


Take a look of project's partnership.

# participants  country  role  EC contrib. [€] 
1    UNIVERSITE DE FRIBOURG CH (FRIBOURG) coordinator 1˙499˙565.00


 Project objective

Sleep is critical for optimal cognitive functioning and health. Sleep disturbances are highly frequent in our society and strongly influenced by cognitive factors, e.g. rumination, expectations and thoughts. However, the mechanism of how cognition influences sleep architecture is not yet understood. To explain how cognition influences sleep, I propose the “Memories-of-Sleep” (MemoSleep)-Hypothesis. Based on the theory of embodied cognition and evidence that memories are reactivated during sleep, the MemoSleep-Hypothesis makes the following assumptions:

(1) Cognitions related to sleep/wake states are embodied. I will call them embodied sleep/wake memories. Embodied sleep/wake memories encompass not only their semantic meaning, but also their sensorimotor body representation. Thus, the mental representation of the word ‘wake’ is directly linked to our body sensation of wakefulness. (2) If embodied sleep/wake memories are activated before sleep, they will have a higher probability of being reactivated during sleep. (3) During sleep, increased reactivation of embodied sleep/wake memories activates associated body responses and thereby affects sleep architecture. Thus, increased reactivation of the mental representation of ‘wake’ will activate wake-related physiological responses and disrupt sleep.

Here I aim at empirically testing these assumptions using brain imaging (high-density EEG, EEG/fMRI) and cognitive testing in humans. I will show that activation of embodied sleep/wake memories before and during sleep influences sleep architecture and affects post-sleep cognitive performance. In addition, I will apply these findings to the elderly and patients with sleep disorders. The results will greatly enhance our theoretical understanding of how cognition influences sleep. Furthermore, they will provide a solid basis for the development of effective cognitive interventions for sleep disorders, with a high potential to improve sleep and cognition also in every-day life.


year authors and title journal last update
List of publications.
2019 Maren Jasmin Cordi, Sandra Ackermann, Björn Rasch
Effects of Relaxing Music on Healthy Sleep
published pages: , ISSN: 2045-2322, DOI: 10.1038/s41598-019-45608-y
Scientific Reports 9/1 2019-09-17
2017 Maren Cordi, Laurent Rossier, Björn Rasch
Improving night-time sleep with hypnotic suggestions
published pages: , ISSN: , DOI: 10.1101/277566
bioRxiv- The PrePrint Server for Biology 2019-06-19
2017 Mareike Huelsemann, Ewald Naumann, Björn Rasch
Quantification of Phase-Amplitude Coupling in Neuronal Oscillations: Comparison of Phase-Locking Value, Mean Vector Length, and Modulation Index
published pages: , ISSN: , DOI: 10.1101/290361
bioRxiv - The PrePrint Server for Biology 2019-06-19
2019 Sarah F. Schoch, Maren J. Cordi, Michael Schredl, Björn Rasch
The effect of dream report collection and dream incorporation on memory consolidation during sleep
published pages: e12754, ISSN: 0962-1105, DOI: 10.1111/jsr.12754
Journal of Sleep Research 28/1 2019-04-18
2019 Geraldine Gvozdanovic, Philipp Stämpfli, Erich Seifritz, Björn Rasch
Structural brain differences predict early traumatic memory processing
published pages: e13354, ISSN: 0048-5772, DOI: 10.1111/psyp.13354
Psychophysiology 2019-04-18
2019 Sandra Ackermann, Maren Cordi, Roberto La Marca, Erich Seifritz, Björn Rasch
Psychosocial Stress Before a Nap Increases Sleep Latency and Decreases Early Slow-Wave Activity
published pages: , ISSN: 1664-1078, DOI: 10.3389/fpsyg.2019.00020
Frontiers in Psychology 10 2019-03-06

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