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Role of BDNF Val66Met polymorphism in circadian rhythm variation and attention in adolescents

Grant number: 19/20910-8
Support Opportunities:Scholarships in Brazil - Scientific Initiation
Effective date (Start): January 01, 2021
Effective date (End): December 31, 2021
Field of knowledge:Interdisciplinary Subjects
Principal Investigator:Claudia Berlim de Mello
Grantee:Luisa da Costa Lopes
Host Institution: Escola Paulista de Medicina (EPM). Universidade Federal de São Paulo (UNIFESP). Campus São Paulo. São Paulo , SP, Brazil


Sleep habits plays a determining role in the development of adolescents, so that their deprivation can impact both physical and mental health. Variations in circadian mechanisms allow the existence of different individual time preferences to remain active. Such variations are called chronotypes and can be: early, late and neutral. One of the parameters that influences the chronotype is age. In adolescence there is a greater tendency to late chronotype, which associated to a high demand for social obligations leads to reduced sleep time. The cumulative sleep debt leads to fatigue, daytime sleepiness, behavioral problems and poor academic performance. The BDNF Val66Met polymorphism, Brain-Derived Neurotrophic Factor, shows a relationship with lower scores of several cognitive functions and with different patterns of sleep and circadian rhythm. Since school hours usually begin in early morning, imposing a temporality that may not correspond to the student's best performance time, it is important to assess how chronotropic trends and genetic characteristics are associated with academic performance. To this purpose, this project aims to determine the relationship between the polymorphism of the Val66Met of the BDNF and the chronotype and the performance in neuropsychological attention tests applied during school time. The cognitive test of choice will be the Psychological Battery for Evaluation of Attention (BPA) and the evaluation of chronotype will be made Morningness-eveningness Questionnaire by Horne and Österberg as well as actigraphy.

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