Collaborative article with Drs. Fernández-Duque and Valeggia on synchronization of sleep and the lunar cycle

February 2, 2021

In a recent paper published in Science Advances, scientists at the University of Washington, the National University of Quilmes in Argentina and Yale University report that sleep cycles in people oscillate during the 29.5-day lunar cycle: In the days leading up to a full moon, people go to sleep later in the evening and sleep for shorter periods of time. The research team, which included Professors Claudia Valeggia and Eduardo Fernández-Duque from the Yale Department of Anthropology, observed these variations in both the time of sleep onset and the duration of sleep in urban and rural settings — from Indigenous communities in northern Argentina to college students in Seattle. They saw the oscillations regardless of an individual’s access to electricity, though the variations are less pronounced in individuals living in urban environments.