International Symposium

Sleep disorders: from Neurobiology to Systemic Consequences

Madrid, Spain, Jan 18-19,2018



Diego García-Borreguero, Instituto del Sueño, Madrid

Joaquín Terán, Hospital Universitario de Burgos

on behalf of the Spanish Sleep Society.



Within a few decades, the science of sleep has undergone a dramatic change from being a subject that interested merely a minority, to becoming a widely discussed issue due to its medical consequences. The relevance of sleep disorders is not only based on its high prevalence (i.e., 4-6% for Obstructive Sleep Apnea, 2-3% for clinically relevant Restless Legs Syndrome, 8-10% for chronic insomnia, etc), but also on the increased cardiovascular and neurological morbidity. On the other hand, sleep disorders deteriorate the quality of life and carry on undoubted work-relates consequences as well as an increased risk of accidents.


Their impact on public health is not exclusively due to the disorders occurring during sleep, but also to issues more related to the modern way of life. Hence, a significant part of the population exposes itself, as a result of a particular life style, to a daily schedule that results in insufficient sleep time. Such has metabolic consequences with an increase in obesity and metabolic syndrome. Ultimately, such a life style increases the cardiovascular risk and reduces life expectancy.


The question is why, being sleep disorders epidemiologically so relevant, has the interest in the scientific study of sleep existed only for a few decades? The answer is probably related to the way in which modern medicine considered for a long time the function of sleep: Initially, sleep was understood as the absence of wakefulness and accordingly, the pathophysiology of any existing condition would not change during wake or during sleep. However, the finding of disorders that occurred exclusively during sleep, such as sleep apnea, reinforced the interest to understand the influence of sleep and wake states on biological functions. Furthermore, any future progress in research of sleep disorders will be possible only if it is associated to a progress in parallel of Neurobiology.


Eightteen years have passed since, in 2000, the Fundación Ramón Areces organized their first Symposium in Madrid on “Neurobiology and Sleep Disorders”. Since then, progress in areas such as Genetics, Neurobiology, or on the metabolic and systemic consequences of sleep disorders has been considerable. As a result, Sleep Medicine has emerged as a field of knowledge characterized by its multidisciplinary clinical nature that has marked consequences on various areas of health ranging form neuropsychology to systemic disorders (hypertension, etc.). The object of this new edition of the International Symposium will be to discuss, aided by several of the world´s leading experts, the current state of our knowledge in the science of sleep and to outline the main lines of directions for research in the coming years.


Jan 18, 2018

9:30-9:40              Welcome and Introduction

    Federico Mayor Zaragoza Fundación Ramón Areces.
    José María Medina Fundación Ramón Areces.
    Diego García Borreguero Coordinador.


    Basic neural mechanisms involved in sleep initiation and sleep maintenance.Miguel Garzón, Univ. Autónoma, Madrid, Spain.


    The role of hypocretins and other activating systems in the regulation of wakefulness. Luis de Lecea, Stanford University, Stanford, CA, USA


    Coffee break


    Systems genetics of sleep homeostasis. Paul Franken, Center for Integrative Genomics, University of Lausanne, Lausanne, Switzerland.


    Involvement of circadian rhythms and other factors in insomnia. Eus van Someren, Netherlands Institute for Neuroscience, Amsterdam, Netherlands.


    Hyperarousal and sleep fragmentation. Diego Garcia-Borreguero, Instituto del Sueño, Madrid, Spain


    Roundtable: Sleep, Neurobiology and Genetics. What´s next? M. Garzón, L. de Lecea, P. Franken, E. Van Someren. Chair: Diego Garcia-Borreguero.




    Towards an integration of the neurobiology of insomnia with CBT. New CBT-based treatment approaches. Sean Drummond, Monash Institute of Cognitive and Clinical Neurosciences, Monash University, Clayton, Australia


    Sleep and memory. Susanne Diekelmann, Univ. Tübingen, Germany


    Coffee break


    Sleep, a window into neurodegeneration?  A. Iranzo, Hospital Clinic, Univ. Barcelona, Barcelona, Spain


    The case for early intervention: Preventing the life-long complications of childhood sleep disorders Dennis Rosen, Harvard Medical School and Boston Children’s Hospital, Boston, USA


Jan 19, 2018


    Narcolepsy, an autoimmune disorder?   Thomas E. Scammel, Harvard Medical School, Boston, USA


    Adenosine dysfunction: the link between dopamine and glutamate alterations in PLMs and RLS. Sergi Ferré, National Institute on Drug Abuse, National Institutes of Health, Baltimore, MD, USA


    Coffee break


    Genetics, brain iron and neurocircuitry in Restless Legs Syndrome. R. Allen, Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, USA.


    Sleep disordered breathing as a health and societal problem.   Joaquín Terán, Hospital Universitario de Burgos, Burgos, Spain.


    Systemic consequences of sleep disorders.   Joaquín Durán-Cantolla, Universidad del Pais Vasco, Vitoria, Spain.


    Sleep disorders and mortality. F. Barbé, Hospital Universitari Arnau de Vilanova, Lleida, Spain.




    Roundtable: Is sleep an important endpoint for health? J. Durán, J. Terán, JM Montserrat ((Hospital Clinic, Univ. Barcelona).


    Animal models in sleep medicine. Isaac Almendros, Hospital Clinic, Univ de Barcelona and R. Allen, Johns Hopkins University.


    Closing remarks.   Joaquín Terán, Hospital Universitario de Burgos.