Welcome

For decades, the University of Chicago has been nationally and internationally recognized as a leading institution for sleep research. Investigators here have been responsible for the discovery of REM sleep (Kleitman and Aserinsky, 1953), the definition of sleep stages used in clinical practice worldwide (Rechtschaffen and Kales, 1968), and the demonstration that total sleep deprivation has deadly consequences (Everson, Bergman and Rechstaffen, 1989). Our current team has identified sleep disturbances as contributing factors to the epidemics of obesity and diabetes. Scientific advances have also taught us that sleep plays an important role in mood and cognitive function, including learning and memory. Together, this work has firmly established sleep as one of the pillars of health. In 2010, the University created the Sleep, Metabolism and Health Center (SMAHC) to provide a strong identity and home for the “Chicago School” of sleep research.