Sleep-cognition hypothesis in maritime pilots, what is the effect of long-term work-related poor sleep on cognition and amyloid accumulation in healthy middle-aged maritime pilots: methodology of a case-control study

Jana Thomas (Corresponding author), Sharon Ooms, Marcel Verbeek, Jan Booij, Mark Rijpkema, Roy P.C. Kessels, Sebastiaan Overeem, Jurgen Claassen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)
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Abstract

INTRODUCTION: Evidence indicates a bidirectional relationship between poor sleep and Alzheimer's disease (AD). While AD may lead to disruption of normal sleep, poor sleep in itself may play a causal role in the development of AD by influencing the production and/or clearance of the amyloid-beta (Aβ) protein. This led to the hypothesis that extended periods (>10 years) of sleep loss could lead to Aβ accumulation with subsequent cognitive AD-related decline. This manuscript describes the methodology of the SCHIP study, a cohort study in maritime pilots that aims at investigating the relationship between prolonged work-related sleep loss, cognitive function and amyloid accumulation among healthy middle-aged maritime pilots, to test the hypothesis that prolonged sleep loss increases the risk of AD-related cognitive decline.

METHODS: Our study sample consists of a group of healthy middle-aged maritime pilots (n=20), who have been exposed to highly irregular work schedules for more than 15 years. The maritime pilots will be compared to a group of healthy, age and education-matched controls (n=20) with normal sleep. Participants will complete 10 days of actigraphy (Actiwatch 2, Philips Respironics) combined with a sleep-wake diary. They will undergo one night of polysomnography, followed by comprehensive assessment of cognitive function. Additionally, participants will undergo amyloid positron emission tomography-CT to measure brain amyloid accumulation and MRI to investigate atrophy and vascular changes.

ANALYSIS: All analyses will be performed using IBM SPSS V.20.0 (SPSS). We will perform independent samples t-tests to compare all outcome parameters.

ETHICS AND DISSEMINATION: The study protocol was approved by our institutional ethical review board (NL55712.091.16, file number 2016-2337) and will be performed according to Good Clinical Practice rules. Data and results will be published in 2020.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere026992
Number of pages7
JournalBMJ open
Volume9
Issue number6
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jun 2019

Keywords

  • Alzheimer's disease
  • amyloid accumulation
  • cognitive function
  • neurodegeneration
  • sleep

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