Dragana Rogulja, Ph.D.

Title
Assistant Professor in Neurobiology
Department
Department of Neurobiology
Institution
Harvard Medical School
Address
210 Longwood Ave
Arm 331A
City, State, Zip
Boston, MA 02115
Phone
(617) 432-3156
E-mail
Dragana_Rogulja[at]hms.harvard.edu
Website
http://roguljalab.hms.harvard.edu/
Research Field
Neuroscience
Award Year
2016

Research

My lab will research how incoming sensory information is muted during sleep, particularly in the context of an aging brain. To achieve a deep and rejuvenating slumber, animals must block out the world around them—allowing them to snooze despite the ongoing light, sounds, and other sensory interruptions. Older animals have more difficulty achieving deep rejuvenating sleep, at least in part due to a decreased sensory arousal threshold compared with younger animals. This is true for us, and it's true for fruit flies as well. Using the fly as a model, my lab is identifying genes and neural circuits that gate sensory information during sleep, and we will investigate how gating changes with age. This work will provide insights into the biology of sleep and could point toward therapeutic approaches for treating insomnia and other disorders in which sleep is disturbed.