Hibernation has been suggested to cause sleep debt, and since oleamide is elevated in the central nervous system of sleep-deprived mammals we hypothesized that brains from hibernating mammals would contain more oleamide than those that were not hibernating. Oleamide was 2.6-fold greater in brains of hibernating Richardson's ground squirrel (Spermophilus richardsonii) than in euthermic brains. Additionally, brain fatty acid-binding protein did not bind oleamide and does not represent a solubilized pool of oleamide.

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Journal of Thermal Biology
Department of Biology

Stewart, J.M., Boudreau, N.M., Blakely, J.A., & Storey, K. (2002). A comparison of oleamide in the brains of hibernating and non-hibernating Richardson's ground squirrel (Spermophilus richardsonii) and its inability to bind to brain fatty acid binding protein. Journal of Thermal Biology, 27(4), 309–315. doi:10.1016/S0306-4565(01)00093-6