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Sleep and Neurodevelopment Symposium: The Earliest Years

Date and Time

November 18, 2021


A black silhouette of a young girl with a colorful rainbow coming out of her head. Image credit: Madison Hueston, Charles Herbert Flowers High School.
Image credit: Madison Hueston,
Charles Herbert Flowers High School.

Sponsored by: The Pediatric Epilepsy Research Foundation, NIMH’s Division of Intramural Research Programs, and the Baylor College of Medicine and Neurological Research Institute at Texas Children's Hospital


In 2017, NIMH’s Division of Intramural Research Programs (IRP) convened a workshop to develop and promote Electrophysiologic Sleep Phenotyping (ESP) as a mainstay of the clinical assessment of children at risk for neurodevelopmental disorders. A Sleep and Neurodevelopment Consortium was established, comprised of several working groups focused on addressing the major obstacles impeding the pace of discovery and tasked with creating a standardized protocol to acquire and analyze pediatric sleep electroencephalogram (EEG) signals in association to neurodevelopmental milestones. Immediate goals included focusing on building the infrastructure to obtain extant sleep EEG pediatric datasets, collating and archiving these data in a central database and embarking upon refining hypotheses.

In 2019, the Sleep and Neurodevelopment Consortium, with NIMH’s Ashura Williams Buckley, M.D., and Mirjana Maletić-Savatić, M.D., Ph.D. , of the Baylor College of Medicine and Neurological Research Institute at Texas Children's Hospital, was awarded an infrastructure grant from the Pediatric Epilepsy Research Foundation to realize this goal.

The workshop on November 18, 2021 , will report on these infrastructure efforts. Also, the workshop will focus on building the research questions and opportunities to fill the data gap regarding the role of sleep in the early years in establishing healthy neural networks and reflecting aberrant neurodevelopment.

Meeting participants will include a diverse mix of clinicians and translational scientists working on mechanisms underlying the role of sleep in the developing brain, biomarker development in neurodevelopmental disorders, and basic scientists who can address underlying mechanisms.

Scope of Workshop:

  • Discuss current sleep metrics in infancy and toddlerhood and how to best increase the limited studies of sleep and behavior in humans that inform behavioral and cognitive health. 
  • Basic mechanisms underlying these changes (e.g., circuit/network activity, temporal dynamics, state-dependent modulation)
  • Practical limitations to obtaining this information and advances in technology moving us forward

Goals and Deliverables:

  • Convene translational neuroscientists, clinicians, and basic scientists, working in this area to share progress, successes, challenges, gaps, lessons learned, etc., and recommend strategies and opportunities going forward

More Information

Baylor College of Medicine is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME)  to provide continuing medical education for physicians. Baylor College of Medicine designates this live activity for a maximum of 5.25 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit(s)TM. Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity.

Attend the Symposium 
Register for CME credit 
Speaker biographies