Gina Poe, Ph.D.

Research

The focus of our lab is to Investigate the mechanisms by which sleep traits serve learning and memory consolidation. We are interested in how disrupted sleep seen in IDD patients may impact learning and memory.

Research

The focus of our lab is to Investigate the mechanisms by which sleep traits serve learning and memory consolidation. We are interested in how disrupted sleep seen in IDD patients may impact learning and memory.

Appointments

Professor, Department of Integrative Biology and Physiology

Appointments

Professor, Department of Integrative Biology and Physiology

The Poe lab investigates the mechanisms by which sleep traits serve learning and memory consolidation. Memories are encoded by the pattern of synaptic connections between neurons. We employ tetrode recording and optogenetic techniques in learning animals to see how neural patterns underlying learning are reactivated during sleep, and how activity during sleep influences the neural memory code. Both strengthening and weakening of synapses is important to the process of sculpting a network when we make new memories and integrate them into old schema.

Results from our studies suggest that while synaptic strengthening can be efficiently accomplished during the waking learning process, the synaptic weakening part of memory integration requires conditions unique to sleep. The absence of noradrenaline during sleep spindles and REM sleep as well as the low levels of serotonin during REM sleep allow the brain to integrate new memories and to refresh and renew old synapses so that we are ready to build new associations the next waking period.

Memory difficulties involved in post-traumatic stress disorder, Schizophrenia, Alzheimer's disease and even autism involve abnormalities in the sleep-dependent memory consolidation process that my lab studies. Keywords: Sleep, learning and memory, PTSD, memory consolidation, reconsolidation, REM sleep, sleep spindles, Norepinephrine, LTP, depotentiation, reversal learning, optogenetics, electrophysiology, tetrode recordings, hippocampus, prefrontal cortex.

Publications

Swift Kevin M., Keus Karina , Echeverria Christy Gonzalez, Cabrera Yesenia , Jimenez Janelly , Holloway Jasmine , Clawson Brittany C., Poe Gina R. Sex differences within sleep in gonadally intact rats. Sleep 43 (2020)
Cabrera Yesenia , Holloway Jasmine , Poe Gina R. Sleep Changes Across the Female Hormonal Cycle Affecting Memory: Implications for Resilient Adaptation to Traumatic Experiences. J Womens Health (Larchmt) 29 (2020) 446-451
Swift Kevin M., Gross Brooks A., Frazer Michelle A., Bauer David S., Clark Kyle J.D., Vazey Elena M., Aston-Jones Gary , Li Yong , Pickering Anthony E., Sara Susan J., Poe Gina R. Abnormal Locus Coeruleus Sleep Activity Alters Sleep Signatures of Memory Consolidation and Impairs Place Cell Stability and Spatial Memory. Curr. Biol. 28 (2018) 3599-3609.e4
Záborszky Laszlo , Gombkoto Peter , Varsanyi Peter , Gielow Matthew R., Poe Gina , Role Lorna W., Ananth Mala , Rajebhosale Prithviraj , Talmage David A., Hasselmo Michael E., Dannenberg Holger ,... Specific Basal Forebrain-Cortical Cholinergic Circuits Coordinate Cognitive Operations. J. Neurosci. 38 (2018) 9446-9458

Pages