Quantitative genetic research on sleep: A review of normal sleep, sleep disturbances and associated emotional, behavioural, and health-related difficulties

Barclay, Nicola and Gregory, Alice (2013) Quantitative genetic research on sleep: A review of normal sleep, sleep disturbances and associated emotional, behavioural, and health-related difficulties. Sleep Medicine Reviews, 17 (1). pp. 29-40. ISSN 1087-0792

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Official URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.smrv.2012.01.008

Abstract

Over the past 50 years, well over 100 twin studies have focussed on understanding factors contributing to variability in normal sleep-wake characteristics and sleep disturbances. Whilst we have gained a great deal from these studies, there is still much to be learnt. Twin studies can be used in multiple ways to answer questions beyond simply estimating heritability. This paper provides a comprehensive review of some of the most important findings from twin studies relating to sleep to date, with a focus on studies investigating genetic and environmental influences contributing to i) objective and subjective measures of normal sleep characteristics (e.g. sleep stage organisation, sleep quality); as well as sleep disturbances and disorders such as dyssomnias (e.g. insomnia, narcolepsy) and parasomnias (e.g. sleepwalking, bruxism); ii) the persistence of sleep problems from childhood to adulthood, and the possibility that the aetiological influences on sleep change with age; iii) the associations between sleep disturbances, emotional, behavioural and health-related problems; and iv) processes of gene-environment correlation and interaction. We highlight avenues for further research, emphasising the need to further consider the aetiology of longitudinal associations between sleep disturbances and psychopathology; the genetic and environmental overlap between sleep and numerous phenotypes; and processes of gene-environment interplay and epigenetics.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: environment, heritability, insomnia, polysomnography, sleep, twins
Subjects: B900 Others in Subjects allied to Medicine
C800 Psychology
Department: Faculties > Health and Life Sciences > Psychology
Depositing User: Ay Okpokam
Date Deposited: 14 Feb 2012 16:34
Last Modified: 24 Oct 2017 11:33
URI: http://nrl.northumbria.ac.uk/id/eprint/5358

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