Clin Psychopharmacol Neurosci.  2017 May;15(2):89-99. 10.9758/cpn.2017.15.2.89.

Role of Sleep Disturbance in the Trajectory of Alzheimer's Disease

  • 1Department of Psychiatry, Seoul Saint Mary's Hospital, College of Medicine, Catholic University of Korea, Seoul, Korea.
  • 2Department of Psychiatry, Saint Vincent's Hospital, College of Medicine, Catholic University of Korea, Suwon, Korea.


Sleep disturbances such as insomnia, hypersomnia, and circadian rhythm disturbance are common in normal elderly and Alzheimer's disease (AD) patients. To date, special attention has been paid to sleep disturbance in the clinical course of AD insofar as the interaction of sleep disturbance with the pathogenesis of AD may impact the clinical course and cognitive function of AD patients. This review covers the bidirectional relationship between sleep disturbance and AD pathogenesis; the associations between sleep disturbance and AD-specific neurotransmitters, brain structure, and aspects of sleep disturbance in each phase of AD; and the effects of sleep disturbance on the cognitive functions of patients in each phase of AD. We consider several factors required to exactly interpret the results and suggest a direction for future studies on the role of sleep disturbance in AD.


Sleep; Alzheimer disease; Mild cognitive impairment; Aging; Amyloid beta-peptides; Cognition
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