People working on the project: Marius Braun, Olivia Petit, Adrian D. Cheok, Charles Spence
The sleeping brain is able to discriminate tones and odours and responds favourably to pleasant scents. More complex processing of olfactory input has not been demonstrated. The dreaming brain, however, has now been found to be able to learn in response to sensory inputs, modifying subsequent sleep and waking behaviour. Nevertheless, true sleep learning—acquiring new facts while sleeping—remains to be explored. With this current study we seek to determine whether humans can learn new olfactory facts while sleeping. We aim to gain conclusive results from experimental trials based on fMRI and other neuro imaging procedures.