The Brain on Night Shift
There are people who lash themselves to their beds to guard against violently acting out their dreams. Other people fall fast asleep without warning during conversations. Both suffer from disorders related to rapid eye movement (REM) sleep. In June 2003, scientists celebrated the 50th anniversary of the discovery of REM sleep and the ensuing advance in understanding brain function. But, writes Morrison, the reason the brain goes into high gear several times a night still eludes scientists.