An interview with Cal Tech assistant professor David Prober was published in Pasadena Now in advance of a public lecture on sleep.

We spend a third of our lives asleep, and sleeplike behaviors have been observed across the animal kingdom, including in animals as simple as jellyfish. These observations suggest that sleep serves an ancient and essential function, but we don’t know what this function is or how sleep is regulated. These questions are medically relevant because sleep disorders are common, but few effective therapies are available. Beyond a basic desire to understand this biological mystery, we hope that determining how sleep is regulated will lead to novel therapies for sleep disorders and may also provide clues as to the function of sleep.