Sleep's role in memory reconsolidation

Katharine C. Simon, Rebecca L. Gómez, Lynn Nadel

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Processes occurring during sleep contribute critically to the stabilization of new learning for long-term retention. Previously consolidated memory traces can be reactivated rendering memories labile again, and vulnerable to disruption or alteration. Across the phases of reactivation, modification, and re-consolidation, processing during sleep may play an essential role in restabilizing the transformed memory. We discuss recent research assessing the impact of sleep on reactivated memories potentially undergoing reconsolidation. We further evaluate targeted memory reactivation, an intervention that can directly engineer reconsolidation during sleep. Although sleep may play a role in restabilizing newly-modified memories, much remains to be explored before we fully understand the supporting mechanisms.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)132-137
Number of pages6
JournalCurrent Opinion in Behavioral Sciences
StatePublished - Jun 2020

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cognitive Neuroscience
  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Behavioral Neuroscience


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