Dr. Miranda Lim investigates new device to enhance sleep

Note: Group photo pre-pandemic

We are eager to follow recent news about Miranda Lim, MD, Ph.D., sleep scientist here at OHSU, on her work collaborating with other researchers to develop a new device to enhance deep sleep. Dr. Lim, a sleep physician-researcher,  is an associate professor of neurology, behavioral neuroscience and medicine in the OHSU School of Medicine, as well as an affiliate scientist with our Institute and a Staff Neurologist at the VA Portland Healthcare System.

Miranda M. Lim, M.D., Ph.D.

As shared by OHSU News:

Funded with $4.3 million from the U.S. Department of Defense, the three-year project will involve refinement of a head-worn device to enhance the natural system of brain cleansing that occurs during sleep. Known as the glymphatic system, this brain-wide network clears metabolic proteins during sleep that would otherwise build up in the brain.

The goal is to eventually help service members and veterans overcome acute sleep deprivation and chronic sleep restriction, according to an announcement by the University of Washington and the University of North Carolina.

Learn more about these academic and industry collaborations, including work with Don Tucker, Ph.D., CEO of BEL Company and professor emeritus at the University of Oregon, as they work to develop a wireless headband to use electrical stimulation to enhance slow-wave deep sleep.

Dr. Lim notes how the project could have potential widespread application and benefit by helping anyone who has a condition where they aren’t getting enough deep sleep. She foresees short-term applications in the recovery from acute sleep deprivation, as seen in shift workers, first responders, and military personnel (as intended in the DoD project) – many of whom require high performance and readiness. She also foresees long-term applications, such as people with traumatic brain injury, Alzheimer’s disease and other neurodegenerative conditions that are vulnerable to lack of sleep.

Learn more:

Working device prototype.