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Our Research

Miranda Lim analyzing sleep lab data with Jonathan Elliot and other team members

We seek to understand the neuroscience of sleep, and how this can be optimized to improve quality of life in health and disease.

We work closely with the community to improve quality of life through our cutting edge research. Our science serves a number of stakeholders, including Veterans and other affected patients, clinicians, the scientific community, and the general public.

Through our research, we hope to discover new therapies for TBI, PTSD, chronic pain, neurodevelopmental disorders and dementia.

Carolyn Tinsley looking through a microscrope
Photo by Fritz Liedtke

We utilize a range of approaches including:

Human Subjects

  • Polysomnography in the sleep clinic or at home
  • MRI scans of the brain
  • Randomized clinical trials testing dietary supplements and other lifestyle based interventions to improve sleep, pain, memory and/or mood.
  • Monitoring of activity and sleep using wristwatch-based devices, bed mats, light sensors, and/or other unobtrusive sensors in the home
  • Survey-based questionnaires
  • Reaction time and memory testing
  • Saliva and/or blood collection
Jonathan Elliott and Miranda Lim discussing sleep data
Photo by Fritz Liedtke

Rodent Subjects

  • Sleep EEG and EMG
  • Social interaction and social preference testing
  • Learning and memory testing and conditioning
  • Gait and locomotor activity assessments
  • Home cage behavior and naturalistic observations
  • Functional ultrasound imaging of the brain
  • Biosensors for neurotransmitters in the brain
  • Immunohistochemistry and microscopy

Mission & Values

SHARP conducts vitally important, impactful research studies in a dynamic and engaging scientific environment.

We are committed to performing ethical research at the highest possible scientific standards.

We respect diverse strengths and backgrounds, and we welcome a culture of lifelong learning and feedback through active mentorship at all levels.

We value teamwork, creativity, independence, organization, transparency, responsibility, perseverance, scientific rigor and professionalism.

Undergraduate researchers discuss sleep science at an outreach event


We are grateful to receive funding support from many sources over the years, including:

  • Department of Veterans Affairs
  • Department of Defense
  • National Institutes of Health
  • National Science Foundation
  • Center for Neuroscience and Regenerative Medicine
  • American Sleep Medicine Foundation, Medical Research Foundation of Oregon
  • Medical Research Foundation of Oregon
  • Collins Medical Trust
  • Brain & Behavior Foundation
  • Paul G. Allen Family Foundation
  • Hartford Foundation
  • Parkinson’s Center of Oregon
  • Pacific Northwest National Laboratories
  • OHSU Oregon Clinical and Translational Research Institute
  • OHSU Oregon Institute of Occupational Health Sciences
  • Portland VA Research Foundation (PVARF)