How do the sleep features that characterise depression impact memory?

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Depression is associated with general sleep disturbance and abnormalities in sleep physiology. For example, compared with control subjects, depressed patients exhibit lower sleep efficiency, longer rapid eye movement (REM) sleep duration, and diminished slow-wave activity during non-REM sleep. A separate literature indicates that depression is also associated with many distinguishing memory characteristics, including emotional memory bias, overgeneral autobiographical memory, and impaired memory suppression. The sleep and memory features that hallmark depression may both contribute to the onset and maintenance of the disorder. Despite our rapidly growing understanding of the intimate relationship between sleep and memory, our comprehension of how sleep and memory interact in the aetiology of depression remains poor. In this narrative review, we consider how the sleep signatures of depression could contribute to the accompanying memory characteristics.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)499-512
Number of pages14
JournalEmerging Topics in Life Sciences
Issue number5
Early online date6 Dec 2023
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2023


  • Categorical memory
  • Cognitive bias
  • Major Depressive Disorder (MDD)
  • Memory control
  • REM sleep dysregulation
  • categorical memory
  • cognitive bias
  • memory control
  • major depressive disorder (MDD)

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