NEUROPHYSIOLOGY, BASIC AND CLINICALEye movements during REM sleep and imagination of visual scenesSprenger, Andreasa; Lappe-Osthege, Marena; Talamo, Silkea; Gais, Steffenb; Kimmig, Huberta c; Helmchen, ChristophaAuthor Information aDepartment of Neurology, University Lübeck, Ratzeburger Allee, Lübeck, Germany bDepartment of Psychology, Ludwig-Maximilian University Munich, Munich cDepartment of Neurology, University Freiburg, Freiburg and Schwarzwald-Baar Klinikum, Villingen-Schwenningen Correspondence to Andreas Sprenger, Department of Neurology, University Lübeck, Ratzeburger Allee 160, D-23538 Lübeck, Germany Tel: +49 451 500 3710; fax: +49 451 500 2489; e-mail: Andreas.Sprenger@neuro.uni-luebeck.de Supplemental digital content is available for this article. Direct URL citations appear in the printed text and are provided in the HTML and PDF versions of this article on the journal's Website (www.neuroreport.com). Received 24 July 2009 accepted 22 September 2009 NeuroReport: January 6th, 2010 - Volume 21 - Issue 1 - p 45-49 doi: 10.1097/WNR.0b013e32833370b2 Buy SDC Metrics AbstractIn Brief It has been hypothesized that rapid eye movements (REMs) during sleep reflect the process of looking around in dreams. We questioned whether REMs differ from eye movements in wakefulness while imagining previously seen visual stimuli (dots, static images, videos). After looking at these stimuli individuals were asked to remember and imagine them. Subsequently, their REMs were recorded at the sleep laboratory. Kinematic parameters of REMs were similar to saccadic eye movements to remembered stimuli with closed eyes, irrespective of the stimulus type. In contrast, peak velocity of eye movements with open eyes was similar to REMs when semantic, but not nonsemantic, contents were imagined. Thus, REMs may be related to exploratory saccadic behaviour in the awake to remember visual stimuli. Supplemental Digital Content is available in the text © 2010 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.