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See detailLight modulation of human sleep depends on a polymorphism in the clock gene PER3
Chellappa, Sarah Laxhmi ULg; Viola, Antoine; Schmidt, Christina ULg et al

in Behavioural Brain Research (2014), 271

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See detailLight modulation of human sleep depends on a polymorphism in the clock gene Period3.
Chellappa, Sarah Laxhmi ULg; Viola, Antoine U.; Schmidt, Christina ULg et al

in Behavioural brain research (2014), 271

Non-image-forming (NIF) responses to light powerfully modulate human physiology. However, it remains scarcely understood how NIF responses to light modulate human sleep and its EEG hallmarks, and if there ... [more ▼]

Non-image-forming (NIF) responses to light powerfully modulate human physiology. However, it remains scarcely understood how NIF responses to light modulate human sleep and its EEG hallmarks, and if there are differences across individuals. Here we investigated NIF responses to light on sleep in individuals genotyped for the PERIOD3 (PER3) variable-number tandem-repeat (VNTR) polymorphism. Eighteen healthy young men (20-28 years; mean+/-SEM: 25.9+/-1.2) homozygous for the PER3 polymorphism were matched by age, body-mass index, and ethnicity. The study protocol comprised a balanced cross-over design during the winter, during which participants were exposed to either light of 40lx at 6500K (blue-enriched) or light at 2500K (non-blue enriched), during 2h in the evening. Compared to light at 2500K, light at 6500K induced a significant increase in all-night NREM sleep slow-wave activity (SWA: 1.0-4.5Hz) in the occipital cortex for PER3(5/5) individuals, but not for PER3(4/4) volunteers. Dynamics of SWA across sleep cycles revealed increased occipital NREM sleep SWA for virtuallyall sleep episode only for PER3(5/5) individuals. Furthermore, they experienced light at 6500K as significantly brighter. Intriguingly, this subjective perception of brightness significantly predicted their increased occipital SWA throughout the sleep episode. Our data indicate that humans homozygous for the PER3(5/5) allele are more sensitive to NIF light effects, as indexed by specific changes in sleep EEG activity. Ultimately, individual differences in NIF light responses on sleep may depend on a clock gene polymorphism involved in sleep-wake regulation. [less ▲]

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See detailMemory Reactivation During Rapid Eye Movement (REM) Sleep Promotes Its Generalization and Integration in Cortical Stores
Sterpenich, Virginie; Schmidt, Christina ULg; Albouy, Genevièvre et al

in Sleep (2014), 37(6), 1061-1075

Memory reactivation appears to be a fundamental process in memory consolidation. Here, we tested the influence of memory reactivation during REM sleep on memory performance and brain responses at ... [more ▼]

Memory reactivation appears to be a fundamental process in memory consolidation. Here, we tested the influence of memory reactivation during REM sleep on memory performance and brain responses at retrieval in healthy human participants. Auditory cues were associated with pictures of faces during their encoding. These memory cues delivered during REM sleep enhanced subsequent accurate recollections but also false recognitions. These results suggest that reactivated memories interacted with semantically-related representations, and induced new creative associations, which subsequently reduced the distinction between new and previously encoded exemplars. Cues had no effect if presented during stage 2 sleep, or if they were not associated with faces during encoding. Functional MRI revealed that following exposure to conditioned cues during REM sleep, responses to faces during retrieval were enhanced both in a visual area and in a cortical region of multisensory (auditory-visual) convergence. These results show that reactivating memories during REM sleep enhances cortical responses during retrieval, suggesting the integration of recent memories within cortical circuits, favoring the generalization and schematization of the information. [less ▲]

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See detailAdaptating test timing to the sleep-wake schedule: effects on diurnal neurobehavioral performance changes in young evening and older morning chronotypes
Schmidt, Christina ULg; Peigneux, Philippe ULg; Cajochen, Christian et al

in Chronobiology International (2012), 29(4), 482-490

The synchrony effect refers to the beneficial impact of temporal matching between the timing of cognitive task administration and preferred time of day for diurnal activity. Aging is often associated with ... [more ▼]

The synchrony effect refers to the beneficial impact of temporal matching between the timing of cognitive task administration and preferred time of day for diurnal activity. Aging is often associated with an advance in sleep-wake timing and concomitant optimal performance levels in the morning. In contrast, young adults often perform better in the evening hours. So far, the synchrony effect has been tested at fixed clock times, neglecting the individual’s sleep-wake schedule and thus introducing confounds such as differences in accumulated sleep pressure or circadian phase that may exacerbate synchrony effects. To probe this hypothesis, we tested older morning and young evening chronotypes with a psychomotor vigilance and a Stroop paradigm once at fixed morning and evening hours and once adapting testing time to their preferred sleep-wake schedule in a within-subject design. We observe a persistence of synchrony effects for overall median reaction times during a psychomotor vigilance task even when testing time is adapted to the specific individual’s sleep-wake schedule. However, data analysis also indicates that time-of-day modulations are weakened under those conditions for incongruent trials on Stroop performance and the slowest reaction times on the psychomotor vigilance task. The latter result suggests that the classically observed synchrony effect may be partially mediated by a series of parameters, such as differences in socio-professional timing constraints, the amount of accumulated sleep need or circadian phase, all leading to differential arousal levels at testing. [less ▲]

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See detailCircadian preference modulates the neural substrate of conflict processing across the day
Schmidt, Christina ULg; Peigneux, Philippe ULg; Leclercq, Yves ULg et al

in PLoS ONE (2012), 7(1), 29658

Human morning and evening chronotypes differ in their preferred timing for sleep and wakefulness, as well as in optimal daytime periods to cope with cognitive challenges. Recent evidence suggests that ... [more ▼]

Human morning and evening chronotypes differ in their preferred timing for sleep and wakefulness, as well as in optimal daytime periods to cope with cognitive challenges. Recent evidence suggests that these preferences are not a simple by-product of socio-professional timing constraints, but can be driven by inter-individual differences in the expression of circadian and homeostatic sleep-wake promoting signals. Chronotypes thus constitute a unique tool to access the interplay between those processes under normally entrained day-night conditions, and to investigate how they impinge onto higher cognitive control processes. Using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), we assessed the influence of chronotype and time-of-day on conflict processing-related cerebral activity throughout a normal waking day. Sixteen morning and 15 evening types were recorded at two individually adapted time points (1.5 versus 10.5 hours spent awake) while performing the Stroop paradigm. Results show that interference-related hemodynamic responses are maintained or even increased in evening types from the subjective morning to the subjective evening in a set of brain areas playing a pivotal role in successful inhibitory functioning, whereas they decreased in morning types under the same conditions. Furthermore, during the evening hours, activity in a posterior hypothalamic region putatively involved in sleep-wake regulation correlated in a chronotype-specific manner with slow wave activity at the beginning of the night, an index of accumulated homeostatic sleep pressure. These results shed light into the cerebral mechanisms underlying inter-individual differences of higher-order cognitive state maintenance under normally entrained day-night conditions. [less ▲]

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See detailThe fate of incoming stimuli during NREM sleep is determined by spindles and the phase of the slow oscillation
Schabus, M.; Dang Vu, Thien Thanh ULg; Heib, D. P. J. et al

in Frontiers in Neurology (2012), 3(40), 1-11

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See detailResponse to Comment on “Homeostatic Sleep Pressure and Responses to Sustained Attention in the Suprachiasmatic Area”
Schmidt, Christina ULg; Peigneux, Philippe ULg; Maquet, Pierre ULg et al

in Science (2010)

Astafiev et al. question whether the blood oxygen level–dependent (BOLD) response that we reported in the brainstem was located in the locus coeruleus (LC). Using high-resolution T1-turbo spin echo images ... [more ▼]

Astafiev et al. question whether the blood oxygen level–dependent (BOLD) response that we reported in the brainstem was located in the locus coeruleus (LC). Using high-resolution T1-turbo spin echo images (T1-TSE) acquired in an independent group of subjects, we show that the reported task-related BOLD response in the brainstem is actually compatible with the anatomical location of the LC. [less ▲]

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See detailWorking memory load affects chronotype- and time-of-day dependent cerebral activity modulations
Schmidt, Christina ULg; Peigneux, Philippe ULg; Leclercq, Yves ULg et al

in Journal of Sleep Research (2010), 19(Suppl. 2),

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See detailBrainstem specific warping improves locus coeruleus functional imaging in humans
Balteau, Evelyne ULg; Schmidt, Christina ULg; Maquet, Pierre ULg et al

in Proceedings of the International Society for Magnetic Resonance in Medicine ... Scientific Meeting and Exhibition. International Society For Magnetic Resonance in Medicine. Scientific Meeting and Exhibition (2010)

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See detailSpecificity of Inhibitory Deficits in Normal Aging and Alzheimer's Disease
Collette, Fabienne ULg; Schmidt, Christina ULg; Scherrer, Christine et al

in Neurobiology of Aging (2009), 30

Deficits of suppression abilities are frequently observed in normal aging and Alzheimer's disease. However, few studies have explored these deficits in the two populations simultaneously using a large ... [more ▼]

Deficits of suppression abilities are frequently observed in normal aging and Alzheimer's disease. However, few studies have explored these deficits in the two populations simultaneously using a large battery of tasks. The aim of the present study was to explore if the pattern of performance presented by elderly subjects and AD patients is in agreement with theoretical frameworks [Wilson, S.P., Harnishfeger, K.K., 1998. The development of efficient inhibition: Evidence from directed forgetting tasks. Dev. Rev. 18, 86-123; see also Nigg J.T., 2000. On inhibition/disinhibition in developmental psychopathology: views from cognitive and personality psychology and a working inhibition taxonomy. Psychol. Bull. 126, 220-246], distinguishing between the concepts of inhibition (a voluntary suppression of irrelevant information) and interference (an automatic suppression process occurring prior to conscious awareness). The results obtained demonstrated that (1) there is an alteration of the inhibitory process in normal elderly subjects; (2) inhibitory and interference resolution processes are quantitately less efficient in AD, since these patients present a correct performance only for information which leaves weak traces in memory. [less ▲]

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See detailHomeostatic sleep pressure and responses to sustained attention in the suprachiasmatic area.
Schmidt, Christina ULg; Collette, Fabienne ULg; Leclercq, Yves ULg et al

in Science (2009), 324(5926), 516-9

Throughout the day, cognitive performance is under the combined influence of circadian processes and homeostatic sleep pressure. Some people perform best in the morning, whereas others are more alert in ... [more ▼]

Throughout the day, cognitive performance is under the combined influence of circadian processes and homeostatic sleep pressure. Some people perform best in the morning, whereas others are more alert in the evening. These chronotypes provide a unique way to study the effects of sleep-wake regulation on the cerebral mechanisms supporting cognition. Using functional magnetic resonance imaging in extreme chronotypes, we found that maintaining attention in the evening was associated with higher activity in evening than morning chronotypes in a region of the locus coeruleus and in a suprachiasmatic area (SCA) including the circadian master clock. Activity in the SCA decreased with increasing homeostatic sleep pressure. This result shows the direct influence of the homeostatic and circadian interaction on the neural activity underpinning human behavior. [less ▲]

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See detailDoes implicit memory during anaesthesia persist in children?
Lopez, Ursula; Habre, w; Laurencon, M. et al

in British Journal of Anaesthesia (2009), 102(3), 37984

Background. Recent studies suggest that implicit memory (especially perceptual implicit memory) persists during adequate general anaesthesia in adults. Studies in children, however, have failed to ... [more ▼]

Background. Recent studies suggest that implicit memory (especially perceptual implicit memory) persists during adequate general anaesthesia in adults. Studies in children, however, have failed to demonstrate implicit memory during general anaesthesia, possibly because of differences in methodological design. We therefore designed a prospective study with the aim of evaluating implicit memory in children undergoing general anaesthesia, using a perceptual memory test based on the mere exposure effect, previously tested in a control group. Methods. Twelve infrequent neutral words were played 12 times in a random sequence via headphones to 36 children aged 8–12 yr during elective or emergency surgery. The children were not premedicated, and general anaesthesia was maintained with isoflurane. The word presentation started immediately after the surgical incision. Within 36 h after the stimulus presentation, the memory was assessed by using a forced-choice preference judgement task. Time constraint and word deterioration with a low-pass filter were used to prevent the subjects from utilizing intentional retrieval. The implicit memory score was obtained by calculating the proportion of target words preferred, which was compared with the chance level (0.5). Results. The percentage of correct responses given by the children was comparable with the chance level. The memory score was mean (SD) 0.48 (0.16) (95% CI 0.43–0.53). Conclusions. The use of a perceptual implicit memory test based on the mere exposure procedure in children failed to reveal any evidence of implicit memory under general anaesthesia. [less ▲]

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See detailPartially Segregated Neural Networks for Spatial and Contextual Memory in Virtual Navigation
Rauchs, G.; Orban, Pierre ULg; Balteau, Evelyne ULg et al

in Hippocampus (2008), 18(5), 503-518

Finding our way in a previously learned, ecologically valid environment concurrently involves spatial and contextual cognitive operations. The former process accesses a cognitive map representing the ... [more ▼]

Finding our way in a previously learned, ecologically valid environment concurrently involves spatial and contextual cognitive operations. The former process accesses a cognitive map representing the spatial interactions between all paths in the environment. The latter accesses stored associations between landmark objects and their milieu. Here, we aimed at dissociating their neural basis in the context of memory-based virtual navigation. To do so, subjects freely explored a virtual town for 1 h, then were scanned using fMRI while retrieving their way between two locations, under four navigation conditions designed to probe separately or jointly the spatial and contextual memory components. Besides prominent commonalities found in a large hippocampo-neocortical network classically involved in topographical navigation, results yield evidence for a partial dissociation between the brain areas supporting spatial and contextual components of memory-based navigation. Performance-related analyses indicate that hippocampal activity mostly supports the spatial component, whereas parahippocampal activity primarily supports the contextual component. Additionally, the recruitment of contextual memory during navigation was associated with higher frontal, posterior parietal and lateral temporal activity. These results provide evidence for a partial segregation of the neural substrates of two crucial memory components in human navigation, whose combined involvement eventually leads to efficient navigation behavior within a learned environment. (c) 2008 Wiley-Liss, Inc. [less ▲]

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See detailSleep modulates the neural substrates of both spatial and contextual memory consolidation
Rauchs, G; Orban, P; Schmidt, Christina ULg et al

in PLoS ONE (2008), 3(8), 2949

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See detailNeural networks for short-term memory for order differentiate high and low proficiency bilinguals
Majerus, Steve ULg; Belayachi, Sanaa ULg; De Smedt, Bert et al

in NeuroImage (2008), 42

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See detailA Time to Think: Circadian Rhythms in Human Cognition
Schmidt, Christina ULg; Collette, Fabienne ULg; Cajochen, Christian et al

in Cognitive Neuropsychology (2007), 24(7), 755-89

Although peaks and troughs in cognitive performance characterize our daily functioning, time-of-day fluctuations remain marginally considered in the domain of cognitive psychology and neuropsychology ... [more ▼]

Although peaks and troughs in cognitive performance characterize our daily functioning, time-of-day fluctuations remain marginally considered in the domain of cognitive psychology and neuropsychology. Here, we attempt to summarize studies looking at the effects of sleep pressure, circadian variations, and chronotype on cognitive functioning in healthy subjects. The picture that emerges from this assessment is that beyond physiological variables, time-of-day modulations affect performance on a wide range of cognitive tasks measuring attentional capacities, executive functioning, and memory. These performance fluctuations are also contingent upon the chronotype, which reflects interindividual differences in circadian preference, and particularly upon the synchronicity between the individuals' peak periods of circadian arousal and the time of the day at which testing occurs. In themselves, these conclusions should direct both the clinician's and the researcher's attention towards the utmost importance to account for time-of-day parameters when assessing cognitive performance in patients and healthy volunteers. [less ▲]

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See detailSocial mind representation: Where does it fail in frontotemporal dementia?
Ruby, P.; Schmidt, Christina ULg; Hogge, Michaël et al

in Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience (2007), 19(4), 671-683

We aimed at investigating social disability and its cerebral correlates in frontotemporal dementia (FTD). To do so, we contrasted answers of patients with early-stage FTD and of their relatives on ... [more ▼]

We aimed at investigating social disability and its cerebral correlates in frontotemporal dementia (FTD). To do so, we contrasted answers of patients with early-stage FTD and of their relatives on personality trait judgment and on behavior prediction in social and emotional situations. Such contrasts were compared to control contrasts calculated with answers of matched controls tested with their relatives. in addition, brain metabolism was measured in patients with positron emission tomography and the [F-18]fluorodeoxyglucose method. Patients turned out to be as accurate as controls in describing their relative's personality, but they failed to predict their relative's behavior in social and emotional circumstances. Concerning the self, patients were impaired both in Current personality assessment and in prediction of their own behavior. Those two self-evaluation measures did not correlate. Only patients' anosognosia for social behavioral disability was found to be related to decreased metabolic activity in the left temporal pole. Such results suggest that anosognosia for social disability in FTD originates in impaired processing of emotional autobiographical information, leading to a self-representation that does not match current behavior. Moreover, we propose that perspective-taking disability participates in anosognosia, preventing patients from correcting their inaccurate self-representation based on their relative's perspective. [less ▲]

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See detailSleep deprivation on the post-encoding night modifies the neural correlates of retrieval of emotional memories 6 months later
Sterpenich, Virginie ULg; Albouy, Geneviève ULg; Darsaud, Annabelle et al

in Journal of Neuroscience (2007), 27(Suppl. 1),

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