An Interactive session was organized for Class XII students on 18 May, 2018. Dr Amita Sehgal, Professor, Department of Neuroscience at the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania was the Speaker. Her topic was Circadian Rhythms.
She shared her academic journey with the students which culminated in such a brilliant profession. Her lab Scientist was awarded Nobel Prize in Medicine in the year 2017.
Dr. Sehgal spoke about the molecular and cellular networks that drive behaviour, in particular rhythmic behaviours such as sleep. She explained how light affects our sleep pattern through the hormone Melatonin, which was very interesting. Her explanation of experiments with fruit fly, Drosophila Melanogaster, to study circadian periodicity was appreciated by the students. It was amazing to know that genes and circuits have been identified that underlie the homeostatic drive for sleep. Dr Sehgal also discussed about sleep deprivation and it’s health consequences, particularly when we are exposed to artificial light at home or office the entire day.
The students put up several questions relating to why babies sleep more and adults sleep less, causes of dreams, stages of sleep, factors affecting the sleep -wake cycle.
The students and teachers thoroughly enjoyed the session.