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Neural markers of inhibition in human memory retrieval.

Wimber, Maria, Bäuml, Karl-Heinz, Bergström, Zara M, Markopoulos, Gerasimos, Heinze, Hans-Jochen, Richardson-Klavehn, Alan (2008) Neural markers of inhibition in human memory retrieval. Journal of Neuroscience, 28 (50). pp. 13419-13427. ISSN 1529-2401. (doi:10.1523/JNEUROSCI.1916-08.2008) (KAR id:30241)


Retrieving particular information from memory facilitates the later retrieval of that information, but also impairs the later retrieval of related, interfering information. It has been theorized that this retrieval-induced forgetting reflects inhibition of interfering memory representations. We used event-related fMRI to investigate the functional neuroanatomy of this impaired retrieval, at the time the impairment is observed. Neural activity differences between impaired and facilitated information occurred in left ventrolateral prefrontal cortex (VLPFC, BA 45 and 47), precuneus (BA 7), and right inferior parietal lobule (IPL, BA 40). Activity in left anterior VLPFC (BA 47) and left posterior temporal cortex (BA 22), regions implicated in the controlled retrieval of weak semantic memory representations, predicted the degree of retrieval-induced forgetting. In contrast, activity in precuneus and right IPL predicted the degree of retrieval-induced facilitation. Our findings demonstrate that impairment of interfering memories and facilitation of practiced memories involve distinct neural processes, and suggest that the impairment reflects inhibition that weakens interfering memory representations.

Item Type: Article
DOI/Identification number: 10.1523/JNEUROSCI.1916-08.2008
Uncontrolled keywords: fMRI; memory; inhibition; interference; cognitive control; VLPFC
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
Divisions: Faculties > Social Sciences > School of Psychology > Cognitive Psychology
Depositing User: Zara Bergstrom
Date Deposited: 03 Sep 2012 19:05 UTC
Last Modified: 23 Jan 2020 04:05 UTC
Resource URI: (The current URI for this page, for reference purposes)
Bergström, Zara M:
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