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Social experience alters the expression of genes related to synaptic function and plasticity, induces elaborations in the morphology of neural structures throughout the brain (Volkmar and Greenough, 1972; Greenough et al., 1978; Technau, 2007), improves cognitive and behavioral performance (Pham et al., 1999a; Toscano et al., 2006) and alters subsequent sleep (Ganguly-Fitzgerald et al., 2006). In this review, we discuss the plastic mechanisms that are induced in response to social experience and how social enrichment can provide insight into the biological functions of sleep.

Original publication




Journal article


Adv Genet

Publication Date





57 - 81


Animals, Behavior, Animal, Neuronal Plasticity, Sleep, Social Behavior