India 2019: Dr Kamalesh K Gulia

Delegate: Dr Kamalesh K Gulia

Affiliations: Sree Chitra Tirunal Institute for Medical Sciences and Technology, Trivandrum

Short Bio: Dr Kamalesh K Gulia, Delhi University Graduate, is sleep scientist from India. Her recent research on the role of sleep during development for cognitive development in offspring is remarkable. She is also involved in testing the herbal principles for management of insomnia. The lab also provides training in sleep research to national and International students.

She organized 8th International Conference of the Asian Sleep Research Society in Kovalam in 2014. She also organized the 5th National Sleep Medicine Course and 4th national Conference of Indian Society for Sleep Research in Trivandrum in 2010. She is General Secretary of the Indian Society for Sleep Research and Executive member of the Indian Academy of Neurosciences.

Activity: 12th Annual World Sleep Day with theme “HEALTHY SLEEP, HEALTHY AGING” was celebrated on 15th March 2019 in the Biomedical Technology (BMT) Wing campus of the Sree Chitra Tirunal Institute for Medical Sciences and Technology (SCTIMST), an Institute of National Importance under Government of India, Trivandrum, Kerala. Dr Kamalesh K Gulia., Scientist in the Division of Seep Research, the Delegate of World Sleep Society for the World Sleep Day, organized this awareness Lecture and Quiz program in the Satelmond Palace of the Biomedical Technology Wing campus.

World Sleep Day Inaugural address was delivered by Dr. Harikrishna Varma, Head of the BMT wing, SCTIMST. Dr Varma emphasized the importance of sleep in overall health at any age. He pointed out how sleep apnoea and various sleep disorders are affecting our lives and stressed on need to for management of these conditions. Dr Varma expressed his pleasure that Dr. V. Mohan Kumar, stalwart in area of sleep research, graced the Sleep Day. He mentioned that Dr. Kumar was the most apt person to talk on the sleep and healthy aging. Dr Varma also appraised various initiatives taken by the Institute for making prototype of the mandibular assist device for management of obstructive sleep apnea. He emphasised on need of making more devices for diagnosis and management of sleep disorders in the SCTIMST which is a key Centre of making Medical Devices in India. Dr Varma congratulated everyone on the World Sleep Day celebrations.

Dr. Maya Nandkumar A, Head, Dept. Applied Biology chaired the talk sessions impeccably. First talk was delivered by Dr. V. Mohan Kumar, Guest of Honor, on Healthy Sleep and Healthy Aging: Myths vs Truth! Dr. Kumar, is Internationally renowned sleep scientist, who has been pioneer in promoting sleep research and medicine in India. He is the founder member of the Indian Society for Sleep Research and played key role in forming Asian Sleep Research Society (ASRS). He is the past President of ASRS and the Vice-President of World Federation of Sleep Research and Sleep Medicine Societies. After his retirement from AIIMS (New Delhi) as professor and head of the Department of Physiology in 2006, he was honoured as an Emeritus Scientist by the CSIR and ICMR, and Visiting Professor at SCTIMST, where he established a Comprehensive Centre for Sleep Disorders. Age is no limit for him as he continue to actively contribute to promotion of Sleep.

Dr. Ravi Prasad Varma (Assistant Prof, Achuta Menon Centre for the Health Sciences Studies, SCTIMST, deliberated on Sleep for Health Aging: Public Health Perspective. Dr Varma has deep interest in research initiatives that have significant engagement with health systems and local communities. He is on the board of research related committees of the State Health Systems Research Centre-Kerala, the Health Action by People, and Pallium India, Thiruvananthapuram. Dr Varma emphasized importance of sleep as it is a risk factor in all the non-communicable diseases. He discussed deteriorated quality of life in most of diseased conditions and poor quality sleep in aged. Quality of life could be improved with healthy sleep, thus efforts are required on this aspect.

Dr. Kamalesh K. Gulia from Division of Sleep Research deliberated on Sleep, Health Technology to meet SDG3 & Sleep Hygiene. Dr Gulia, an ambassador for sleep research promotion, emphasised the emergent need to hold awareness programs towards healthy sleep for all age groups as she believes that prevention is better than cure. She highlighted how our obsessions with technologies are disrupting not only sleep but also the social interactions and cognitive abilities. Sound sleep is a treasured function and one of the three core pillars of good health. Good Health and Well Being, one of key objectives of Sustainable Developmental Goal (SDG3) by United Nations, could be achieved only if due importance of given to the sleep, a physiological state in which we spent one third of our life. She shared her recent research on sleep deprivation during pregnancy and impaired emotional and cognitive development in children. She also pictorially described Ten Commandments of the Sleep Hygiene for adults and children.

The talk session was followed by a rapid Quiz session, in which questions were asked on various aspects of sleep. Participants bubbled with enthusiasm marked their keen knowledge about sleep. The talk sessions sparked spectacular discussions wherein participants posed several questions to the experts about sleep. A special blue berry cake was cut to commemorate the World Sleep Day.

For World Sleep Day, an expressive artful dry colour rangoli depicting snoozing baby (on bottom left) and an insomniac person (on the bottom right) was made in the lobby of the Satelmond Palace by PhD students, Rupesh, Niranjana, Aswathy, and Anupama from Division of Tissue Culture, BMT wing.

#Healthy Sleep, Healthy Aging

Location: Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala, India

Date of Activity: 15 March 2019

Submitted By: Kamalesh K Gulia