Association of Senior and Emeritus Faculty


A luncheon will be held at 12 noon on Friday, December 19, 2008.

Location: Lenape Room in University Club at the Inn at Penn, 3611 Walnut Street, Second Floor.

Dr. Allan Pack, John L. Miclot Professor of Medicine and Director of the Center for Sleep and Respiratory Neurobiology at the University of Pennsylvania will present the topic:

Why Do We Sleep?

Humans spend about 8 hours/day sleeping, i.e., about one-third of our life. Why? One hopes that sleep has an important, major function(s). New approaches to address this fundamental question have emerged. First, a sleep-like state has now been identified using behavioral criteria in multiple model systemsóC. elegans (worm), Drosophila (fruit fly) and zebra fish. These model systems have considerable advantages as a result of their more limited genome, single techniques for manipulation of gene expression in a spatial and temporally controlled fashion and, in the case of C. elegans, a much simpler, well characterized nervous system.

Combining studies in these model systems with both forward genetic strategies and use of microarrays to determine genes changing expression between sleep and wakefulness has led to a number of new concepts: a) there is a metabolic cycle in brain with sleep being a stage of macromolecule synthesis in preparation for subsequent wakefulness; b) extending wakefulness leads to ER stress and activation of the unfolded protein response; sleep is neuroprotective; c) sleep is not only for brain but also plays a role in regulation of the function of peripheral organs. Changes in these processes occur with age. The evidence for these assertions will be described.


RSVP to asef@mail.med.upenn.edu, as seating is limited.


Luncheon Lite (Soup and sandwich or soup and salad)..................$7.50

Full Lunch...................................................................................$10.25


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