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Re: Evolution of sleep

Jason, aka "Jura" (pristichampsus@yahoo.com) wrote:

<I'm not sure how far back sleep goes, but I know that insects get the
"honour" of being included in this camp. Though the physiological
processes that occur in vertebrate sleep, are completely different with
insects (since they have a completely different physiology, I'm hardly
surprised). As such, insect sleep usually gets labeled as: torpor.
<Nonetheless, insects demonstrate the same lack of mobility and decreased
response to stimuli, that is seen in vertebrates when they sleep (i.e.
they "shut down" just like the rest of us do).>

  I have heard some anecdotes (and presented on this in a junior high
science fair project) that dreaming is a function of memory storage, with
active recall occuring while "data" is being processed through the
neocortex from the hippocampus. If the hippocampus and amygdala, being
"basal" parts of the brain (basal as in nearer the base of the brain,
brainstem, medullary region, etc.), are retained in more "primitive" (I'm
not sure there's a good word for this, since basal requires a cline...)
organisms. So the hypothesis would be if there was an amygdalary or
hippocampal region of the brain present, dreaming would be possible.


Jaime A. Headden

  Little steps are often the hardest to take.  We are too used to making leaps 
in the face of adversity, that a simple skip is so hard to do.  We should all 
learn to walk soft, walk small, see the world around us rather than zoom by it.

"Innocent, unbiased observation is a myth." --- P.B. Medawar (1969)

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