Chan, L.K.; Hayward, W.G.; Theeuwes, J.
Recent studies have proposed that a common mechanism may underlie spatial attention and spatial working memory. One proposal is that spatial working memory is maintained by attention-based rehearsal [Awh, E., Jonides, J., & Reuter-Lorenz, P. A. (1998). Rehearsal in spatial working memory. Journal of
Oosterman, Joukje M.; Morel, Sascha; Meijer, Lisette; Buvens, Cleo; Kessels, Roy P. C.; Postma, Albert
The present study was intended to compare age effects on visual and spatial working memory by using two versions of the same task that differed only in presentation mode. The working memory task contained both a simultaneous and a sequential presentation mode condition, reflecting, respectively, visual and spatial working memory processes. Young…
Won, Bo-Yeong; Jiang, Yuhong V.
Recent empirical and theoretical work has depicted a close relationship between visual attention and visual working memory. For example, rehearsal in spatial working memory depends on spatial attention, whereas adding a secondary spatial working memory task impairs attentional deployment in visual search. These findings have led to the proposal…
Crawford, L. Elizabeth; Landy, David; Salthouse, Timothy A.
Spatial memory research has attributed systematic bias in location estimates to a combination of a noisy memory trace with a prior structure that people impose on the space. Little is known about intraindividual stability and interindividual variation in these patterns of bias. In the current work, we align recent empirical and theoretical work on…
Botta, Fabiano; Santangelo, Valerio; Raffone, Antonino; Sanabria, Daniel; Lupianez, Juan; Belardinelli, Marta Olivetti
In the present study, we investigate how spatial attention, driven by unisensory and multisensory cues, can bias the access of information into visuo-spatial working memory (VSWM). In a series of four experiments, we compared the effectiveness of spatially-nonpredictive visual, auditory, or audiovisual cues in capturing participants' spatial…
Morsella, Ezequiel; Krauss, Robert M
Co-speech gestures traditionally have been considered communicative, but they may also serve other functions. For example, hand-arm movements seem to facilitate both spatial working memory and speech production. It has been proposed that gestures facilitate speech indirectly by sustaining spatial representations in working memory. Alternatively, gestures may affect speech production directly by activating embodied semantic representations involved in lexical search. Consistent with the first hypothesis, we found participants gestured more when describing visual objects from memory and when describing objects that were difficult to remember and encode verbally. However, they also gestured when describing a visually accessible object, and gesture restriction produced dysfluent speech even when spatial memory was untaxed, suggesting that gestures can directly affect both spatial memory and lexical retrieval.
Pearson, David G; Ball, Keira; Smith, Daniel T
There is little consensus regarding the specific processes responsible for encoding, maintenance, and retrieval of information in visuo-spatial working memory (VSWM). One influential theory is that VSWM may involve activation of the eye-movement (oculomotor) system. In this study we experimentally prevented healthy participants from planning or executing saccadic eye-movements during the encoding, maintenance, and retrieval stages of visual and spatial working memory tasks. Participants experienced a significant reduction in spatial memory span only when oculomotor preparation was prevented during encoding or maintenance. In contrast there was no reduction when oculomotor preparation was prevented only during retrieval. These results show that (a) involvement of the oculomotor system is necessary for optimal maintenance of directly-indicated locations in spatial working memory and (b) oculomotor preparation is not necessary during retrieval from spatial working memory. We propose that this study is the first to unambiguously demonstrate that the oculomotor system contributes to the maintenance of spatial locations in working memory independently from the involvement of covert attention. Copyright © 2014 The Authors. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Full Text Available Astrocytes are active players in higher brain function as they can release gliotransmitters, which are essential for synaptic plasticity. Various mechanisms have been proposed for gliotransmission, including vesicular mechanisms as well as non-vesicular ones, for example by passive diffusion via connexin hemichannels (HCs. We here investigated whether interfering with connexin43 (Cx43 HCs influenced hippocampal spatial memory. We made use of the peptide Gap19 that blocks HCs but not gap junction channels and is specific for Cx43. To this end, we microinfused transactivator of transcription linked Gap19 (TAT-Gap19 into the brain ventricle of male NMRI mice and assessed spatial memory in a Y maze. We found that the in vivo blockade of Cx43 HCs did not affect the locomotor activity or spatial working memory in a spontaneous alternation Y maze task. Cx43 blockade did however significantly impair the spatial short-term memory in a delayed spontaneous alternation Y maze task. These results indicate that Cx43 HCs play a role in spatial short-term memory.
Nagel, Bonnie J.; Herting, Megan M.; Maxwell, Emily C.; Bruno, Richard; Fair, Damien
Adult functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) literature suggests that a left-right hemispheric dissociation may exist between verbal and spatial working memory (WM), respectively. However, investigation of this type has been obscured by incomparable verbal and spatial WM tasks and/or visual inspection at arbitrary thresholds as means to…
Tsujii, Takeo; Yamamoto, Eriko; Masuda, Sayako; Watanabe, Shigeru
This study longitudinally compared activity in the frontal cortex during a spatial working memory task between 5-year-old and 7-year-old children using near-infrared spectroscopy. Eight children participated in this study twice, once at 5 years and once at 7 years of age. Behavioral analysis showed that older children performed the working memory task more precisely and more rapidly than younger children. Near-infrared spectroscopy analysis showed that right hemisphere dominance was observed in older children, whereas no hemispheric difference was apparent in younger children. Children with strengthened lateralization showed improved performance from 5 to 7 years. We therefore offer the first demonstration of the developmental changes in frontal cortical activation during spatial working memory tasks during the preschool period.
Thomas, Laura E.
Directed actions can play a causal role in cognition, shaping thought processes. What drives this cross-talk between action and thought? I investigated the hypothesis that representations in spatial working memory mediate interactions between directed actions and problem solving. Participants attempted to solve an insight problem while…
Storbeck, Justin; Maswood, Raeya
The effects of emotion on working memory and executive control are often studied in isolation. Positive mood enhances verbal and impairs spatial working memory, whereas negative mood enhances spatial and impairs verbal working memory. Moreover, positive mood enhances executive control, whereas negative mood has little influence. We examined how emotion influences verbal and spatial working memory capacity, which requires executive control to coordinate between holding information in working memory and completing a secondary task. We predicted that positive mood would improve both verbal and spatial working memory capacity because of its influence on executive control. Positive, negative and neutral moods were induced followed by completing a verbal (Experiment 1) or spatial (Experiment 2) working memory operation span task to assess working memory capacity. Positive mood enhanced working memory capacity irrespective of the working memory domain, whereas negative mood had no influence on performance. Thus, positive mood was more successful holding information in working memory while processing task-irrelevant information, suggesting that the influence mood has on executive control supersedes the independent effects mood has on domain-specific working memory.
Won, Bo-Yeong; Jiang, Yuhong V.
Recent empirical and theoretical work has depicted a close relationship between visual attention and visual working memory. For example, rehearsal in spatial working memory depends on spatial attention, whereas adding a secondary spatial working memory task impairs attentional deployment in visual search. These findings have led to the proposal that working memory is attention directed toward internal representations. Here we show that the close relationship between these two constructs is limited to some but not all forms of spatial attention. In five experiments, participants held color arrays, dot locations, or a sequence of dots in working memory. During the memory retention interval they performed a T-among-L visual search task. Crucially, the probable target location was cued either implicitly through location probability learning, or explicitly with a central arrow or verbal instruction. Our results showed that whereas imposing a visual working memory load diminished the effectiveness of explicit cuing, it did not interfere with probability cuing. We conclude that spatial working memory shares similar mechanisms with explicit, goal-driven attention but is dissociated from implicitly learned attention. PMID:25401460
Auger, Meagan L; Floresco, Stan B
Dysfunction in prefrontal cortex (PFC) GABA transmission has been proposed to contribute to cognitive dysfunction in schizophrenia, yet how this system regulates different cognitive and mnemonic functions remains unclear. We assessed the effects of pharmacological reduction of GABAA signaling in the medial PFC of rats on spatial reference/working memory using different versions of the radial-arm maze task. We used a massed-trials procedure to probe how PFC GABA regulates susceptibility to proactive interference. Male rats were well-trained to retrieve food from the same 4 arms of an 8-arm maze, receiving 5 trials/day (1-2 min intervals). Infusions of the GABAA receptor antagonist bicuculline (12.5-50 ng) markedly increased working and reference memory errors and response latencies. Similar treatments also impaired short-term memory on an 8-baited arm task. These effects did not appear to be due to increased susceptibility to proactive interference. In contrast, PFC inactivation via infusion of GABA agonists baclofen/muscimol did not affect reference/working memory. In comparison to the pronounced effects on the 8-arm maze tasks, PFC GABAA antagonism only causes a slight and transient decrease in accuracy on a 2-arm spatial discrimination. These findings demonstrate that prefrontal GABA hypofunction severely disrupts spatial reference and short-term memory and that disinhibition of the PFC can, in some instances, perturb memory processes not normally dependent on the frontal lobes. Moreover, these impairments closely resemble those observed in schizophrenic patients, suggesting that perturbation in PFC GABA signaling may contribute to these types of cognitive deficits associated with the disorder. © The Author 2014. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of CINP.
Dundon, Neil Michael; Katshu, Mohammad Zia Ul Haq; Harry, Bronson; Roberts, Daniel; Leek, E Charles; Downing, Paul; Sapir, Ayelet; Roberts, Craig; d'Avossa, Giovanni
Studies investigating the functional organization of the medial temporal lobe (MTL) suggest that parahippocampal cortex (PHC) generates representations of spatial and contextual information used by the hippocampus in the formation of episodic memories. However, evidence from animal studies also implicates PHC in spatial binding of visual information held in short term, working memory. Here we examined a 46-year-old man (P.J.), after he had recovered from bilateral medial occipitotemporal cortex strokes resulting in ischemic lesions of PHC and hippocampal atrophy, and a group of age-matched healthy controls. When recalling the color of 1 of 2 objects, P.J. misidentified the target when cued by its location, but not shape. When recalling the position of 1 of 3 objects, he frequently misidentified the target, which was cued by its color. Increasing the duration of the memory delay had no impact on the proportion of binding errors, but did significantly worsen recall precision in both P.J. and controls. We conclude that PHC may play a crucial role in spatial binding during encoding of visual information in working memory. © The Author 2017. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please e-mail: email@example.com.
Full Text Available Protecting information from distraction is essential for optimal performance of working memory. We examined how the presence of distracting stimuli influences spatial working memory and compared the effect of both task-similar and negatively emotionally salient distractors. We checked the effect of distractors on the accuracy of high-resolution representations, as well as the maintenance of spatial categories, and more precisely defined not only the existence but also the direction of the distracting influences (towards or away from the position of the distractor. Participants (n = 25, 8 men, 19–31 years old were asked to remember the exact position of a target scrambled image and recall it with a joystick after a delay. In some trials an additional distracting image (scrambled, neutral or negative was shown during the delay. We measured the spread of responses (standard deviation of angular error and shifts of the average response towards the prototype angles (45° or towards the position of distractors. Distracting stimuli did not affect the spread of responses and decreased the tendency of participants to move the responses towards the prototype angle. Different types of distractors did not differ in this effect. Contrary to expectations, the participants moved their responses away from the position of distractors; this effect was more pronounced for negative distractors. In addition to memorizing the exact position and maintaining attention on the position of the stimulus, participants are likely to strategically use information about spatial category membership (quadrants and information about the position of the distractor. The repulsive effect of the distractor likely results from inhibition of its position and indicates the need to supplement computational models of spatial working memory and to take into account different strategies of working memory use.
Auger, Meagan L.; Floresco, Stan B.
Background: Dysfunction in prefrontal cortex (PFC) GABA transmission has been proposed to contribute to cognitive dysfunction in schizophrenia, yet how this system regulates different cognitive and mnemonic functions remains unclear. Methods: We assessed the effects of pharmacological reduction of GABAA signaling in the medial PFC of rats on spatial reference/working memory using different versions of the radial-arm maze task. We used a massed-trials procedure to probe how PFC GABA regulates ...
Lanfranchi, Silvia; De Mori, Letizia; Mammarella, Irene C.; Carretti, Barbara; Vianello, Renzo
The aim of the present study was to compare visuospatial working memory performance in 18 individuals with Williams syndrome (WS) and 18 typically developing (TD) children matched for nonverbal mental age. Two aspects were considered: task presentation format (i.e., spatial-sequential or spatial-simultaneous), and level of attentional control…
Sarah R Rudebeck
Full Text Available One current challenge in cognitive training is to create a training regime that benefits multiple cognitive domains, including episodic memory, without relying on a large battery of tasks, which can be time-consuming and difficult to learn. By giving careful consideration to the neural correlates underlying episodic and working memory, we devised a computerized working memory training task in which neurologically healthy participants were required to monitor and detect repetitions in two streams of spatial information (spatial location and scene identity presented simultaneously (i.e. a dual n-back paradigm. Participants' episodic memory abilities were assessed before and after training using two object and scene recognition memory tasks incorporating memory confidence judgments. Furthermore, to determine the generalizability of the effects of training, we also assessed fluid intelligence using a matrix reasoning task. By examining the difference between pre- and post-training performance (i.e. gain scores, we found that the trainers, compared to non-trainers, exhibited a significant improvement in fluid intelligence after 20 days. Interestingly, pre-training fluid intelligence performance, but not training task improvement, was a significant predictor of post-training fluid intelligence improvement, with lower pre-training fluid intelligence associated with greater post-training gain. Crucially, trainers who improved the most on the training task also showed an improvement in recognition memory as captured by d-prime scores and estimates of recollection and familiarity memory. Training task improvement was a significant predictor of gains in recognition and familiarity memory performance, with greater training improvement leading to more marked gains. In contrast, lower pre-training recollection memory scores, and not training task improvement, led to greater recollection memory performance after training. Our findings demonstrate that practice
Tyurenkov, I N; Volotova, E V; Kurkin, D V
This work was aimed at evaluating the influence of gliatilin administration on the spatial memory in aged rats. Cognitive function and spatial memory in animals was evaluated using radial (8-beam) maze test. Errors of working spatial memory and reference memory were used as indicators of impaired cognitive function. It was found that aged (24-month) rats compared with younger (6-months) age group exhibited cognitive impairment, as manifested by deterioration of short- and long-term memory processes. Course administration of gliatilin in rats of the older age group at a dose of 100 mg/kg resulted in significant improvement of the working and reference spatial memory in aged rats.
Wang, Xiao-Qin; Wang, Gong-Wu
Moderate exercise promotes learning and memory. Most studies mainly focused on memory exercise effects of in the ageing and patients. There is lack of quantitative research about effect of regular exercise intensity on different memory types in normal subjects. Present study investigated the effects of different intensities of treadmill exercise on working memory and long-term memory. Fifty female Wistar rats were trained by T-maze delayed spatial alternation (DSA) task with 3 delays (10s, 60s and 300s). Then they got a 30min treadmill exercise for 30days in 4 intensities (control, 0m/min; lower, 15m/min; middle, 20m/min, and higher, 30m/min). Then animals were tested in DSA, passive avoidance and Morris water maze tasks. 1. Exercise increased the neuronal density of hippocampal subregions (CA1, CA3 and dentate gyrus) vs. naïve/control. 2. In DSA task, all groups have similar baseline, lower intensity improved 10s delay accuracy vs. baseline/control; middle and higher intensities improved 300s delay accuracy vs. baseline/control. 3. In water maze learning, all groups successfully found the platform, but middle intensity improved platform field crossing times vs. control in test phase. Present results suggested that treadmill exercise can improve long-term spatial memory and working memory; lower intensity benefits to short-term delayed working memory, and middle or higher intensity benefits to long-term delayed working memory. There was an inverted U dose-effect relationship between exercise intensity and memory performance, but exercise -working memory effect was impacted by delay duration. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Katus, Tobias; Eimer, Martin
The maintenance of sensory information in working memory (WM) is mediated by the attentional activation of stimulus representations that are stored in perceptual brain regions. Using event-related potentials (ERPs), we measured tactile and visual contralateral delay activity (tCDA/CDA components) in a bimodal WM task to concurrently track the attention-based maintenance of information stored in anatomically segregated (somatosensory and visual) brain areas. Participants received tactile and visual sample stimuli on both sides, and in different blocks, memorized these samples on the same side or on opposite sides. After a retention delay, memory was unpredictably tested for touch or vision. In the same side blocks, tCDA and CDA components simultaneously emerged over the same hemisphere, contralateral to the memorized tactile/visual sample set. In opposite side blocks, these two components emerged over different hemispheres, but had the same sizes and onset latencies as in the same side condition. Our results reveal distinct foci of tactile and visual spatial attention that were concurrently maintained on task-relevant stimulus representations in WM. The independence of spatially-specific biasing mechanisms for tactile and visual WM content suggests that multimodal information is stored in distributed perceptual brain areas that are activated through modality-specific processes that can operate simultaneously and largely independently of each other. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Shimomura, Tomonari; Kumada, Takatsune
The present study investigated whether subitizing reflects capacity limitations associated with two types of working memory tasks. Under a dual-task situation, participants performed an enumeration task in conjunction with either a spatial (Experiment 1) or a nonspatial visual (Experiment 2) working memory task. Experiment 1 showed that spatial working memory load affected the slope of a counting function but did not affect subitizing performance or subitizing range. Experiment 2 showed that nonspatial visual working memory load affected neither enumeration efficiency nor subitizing range. Furthermore, in both spatial and nonspatial memory tasks, neither subitizing efficiency nor subitizing range was affected by amount of imposed memory load. In all the experiments, working memory load failed to influence slope, subitizing range, or overall reaction time. These findings suggest that subitizing is performed without either spatial or nonspatial working memory. A possible mechanism of subitizing with independent capacity of working memory is discussed.
Bottini, Roberto; Mattioni, Stefania; Collignon, Olivier
Several studies suggest that serial order in working memory (WM) is grounded on space. For a list of ordered items held in WM, items at the beginning of the list are associated with the left side of space and items at the end of the list with the right side. This suggests that maintaining items in verbal WM is performed in strong analogy to writing these items down on a physical whiteboard for later consultation (The Mental Whiteboard Hypothesis). What drives this spatial mapping of ordered series in WM remains poorly understood. In the present study we tested whether visual experience is instrumental in establishing the link between serial order in WM and spatial processing. We tested early blind (EB), late blind (LB) and sighted individuals in an auditory WM task. Replicating previous studies, left-key responses were faster for early items in the list whereas later items facilitated right-key responses in the sighted group. The same effect was observed in LB individuals. In contrast, EB participants did not show any association between space and serial position in WM. These results suggest that early visual experience plays a critical role in linking ordered items in WM and spatial representations. The analogical spatial structure of WM may depend in part on the actual experience of using spatially organized devices (e.g., notes, whiteboards) to offload WM. These practices are largely precluded to EB individuals, who instead rely to mnemonic devices that are less spatially organized (e.g., recordings, vocal notes). The way we habitually organize information in the external world may bias the way we organize information in our WM. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Full Text Available The issue investigates the relationship Selective Reminding Test (SRT, a test of spatial working memory (SWM with Kaufman Assessment Battery for Children (KABC II. It has been found that the efficiency of memorizing verbal material is associated with the estimates on the K-ABC Sequential processing scale and K-ABC Simultaneous processing scale, but not to the Learning scale of education, is measured indirectly verbal memorization. Spatial working memory is not related to IQ.The issue is part of a research project on cognitive function in children with neuro-oncological disorders
Botta, Fabiano; Santangelo, Valerio; Raffone, Antonino; Lupiáñez, Juan; Belardinelli, Marta Olivetti
In this study, we investigate how exogenous and endogenous orienting of spatial attention affect visuospatial working memory (VSWM). Specifically, we focused on two attentional effects and their consequences on storage in VSWM, when exogenous (Experiment 1) or endogenous (Experiment 2) orienting cues were used. The first effect, known as the meridian effect, is given by a decrement in behavioural performance when spatial cues and targets are presented in locations separated by vertical and/or horizontal meridians. The second effect, known as the distance effect, is given by a decrement in the orienting effects as a function of the spatial distance between cues and targets. Our results revealed a dissociation between exogenous and endogenous orienting mechanisms in terms of both meridian and distance effects. We found that meridian crossing affects performance only when endogenous cues were used. Specifically, VSWM performance with endogenous cueing depended more on the number of meridian crossings than on distance between cue and target. By contrast, a U-shaped distance dependency was observed using exogenous cues. Our findings therefore suggest that exogenous and endogenous orienting mechanisms lead to different forms of attentional bias for storage in VSWM.
Fabius, J. H.; Mathôt, Sebastiaan; Schut, M. J.; Nijboer, T. C.W.; Van der Stigchel, S.
In this experiment, we demonstrate modulation of the pupillary light response by spatial working memory (SWM). The pupillary light response has previously been shown to reflect the focus of covert attention, as demonstrated by smaller pupil sizes when a subject covertly attends a location on a
Xinhua Yang; Ping Zhou; Yonghui Li
BACKGROUND: Studies have demonstrated that lead exposure can result in cognitive dysfunction and behavior disorders. However, lead exposure impairments vary under different experimental conditions.OBJECTIVE: To detect changes in spatial learning and memory following low-level lead exposure in rats, in Morris water maze test under the same experimental condition used to analyze lead exposure effects on various memory types and learning processes.DESIGN AND SETTING: The experiment was conducted at the Animal Laboratory, Institute of Psychology, Chinese Academy of Science between February 2005 and March 2006. One-way analysis of variance (ANOVA) and behavioral observations were performed.MATERIALS: Sixteen male, healthy, adult, Sprague Dawley rats were randomized into normal control and lead exposure groups (n = 8).METHODS: Rats in the normal control group were fed distilled water, and those in the lead exposure group were fed 250 mL of 0.05% lead acetate once per day. At day 28, all rats performed the Morris water maze test, consisting of four phases: space navigation, probe test, working memory test, and visual cue test.MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: Place navigation in the Morris water maze was used to evaluate spatial learning and memory, probe trials for spatial reference memory, working memory test for spatial working memory, and visual cue test for non-spatial cognitive function. Perkin-Elmer Model 300 Atomic Absorption Spectrometer was utilized to determine blood lead levels in rats.RESULTS: (1) In the working memory test, the time to reach the platform remained unchanged between the control and lead exposure groups (F(1,1) = 0.007, P = 0.935). A visible decrease in escape latencies was observed in each group (P = 0.028). However, there was no significant difference between the two groups (F(1,1) = 1.869, P = 0.193). The working memory probe test demonstrated no change between the two groups in the time spent in the target quadrant during the working memory probe test
Schutte, Anne R.; Keiser, Brian A.; Beattie, Heidi L.
This study examined whether attention to a location plays a role in the maintenance of locations in spatial working memory in young children as it does in adults. This study was the first to investigate whether distractors presented during the delay of a spatial working-memory task influenced young children's memory responses. Across 2…
Postle, Bradley R; Idzikowski, Christopher; Sala, Sergio Della; Logie, Robert H; Baddeley, Alan D
In the late 1970s/early 1980s, Baddeley and colleagues conducted a series of experiments investigating the role of eye movements in visual working memory. Although only described briefly in a book, these studies have influenced a remarkable number of empirical and theoretical developments in fields ranging from experimental psychology to human neuropsychology to nonhuman primate electrophysiology. This paper presents, in full detail, three critical studies from this series, together with a recently performed study that includes a level of eye movement measurement and control that was not available for the older studies. Together, the results demonstrate several facts about the sensitivity of visuospatial working memory to eye movements. First, it is eye movement control, not movement per se, that produces the disruptive effects. Second, these effects are limited to working memory for locations and do not generalize to visual working memory for shapes. Third, they can be isolated to the storage/maintenance components of working memory (e.g., to the delay period of the delayed-recognition task). These facts have important implications for models of visual working memory.
Wang, Lu; Carr, Martha
In this review, a new model that is grounded in information-processing theory is proposed to account for gender differences in spatial ability. The proposed model assumes that the relative strength of working memory, as expressed by the ratio of visuospatial working memory to verbal working memory, influences the type of strategies used on spatial…
Storbeck, Justin; Watson, Philip
Prior research has suggested that emotion and working memory domains are integrated, such that positive affect enhances verbal working memory, whereas negative affect enhances spatial working memory (Gray, 2004; Storbeck, 2012). Simon (1967) postulated that one feature of emotion and cognition integration would be reciprocal connectedness (i.e., emotion influences cognition and cognition influences emotion). We explored whether affective judgments and attention to affective qualities are biased by the activation of verbal and spatial working memory mind-sets. For all experiments, participants completed a 2-back verbal or spatial working memory task followed by an endorsement task (Experiments 1 & 2), word-pair selection task (Exp. 3), or attentional dot-probe task (Exp. 4). Participants who had an activated verbal, compared with spatial, working memory mind-set were more likely to endorse pictures (Exp. 1) and words (Exp. 2) as being more positive and to select the more positive word pair out of a set of word pairs that went 'together best' (Exp. 3). Additionally, people who completed the verbal working memory task took longer to disengage from positive stimuli, whereas those who completed the spatial working memory task took longer to disengage from negative stimuli (Exp. 4). Interestingly, across the 4 experiments, we observed higher levels of self-reported negative affect for people who completed the spatial working memory task, which was consistent with their endorsement and attentional bias toward negative stimuli. Therefore, emotion and working memory may have a reciprocal connectedness allowing for bidirectional influence.
Kreitz, Carina; Furley, Philip; Memmert, Daniel; Simons, Daniel J
Working memory and attention are closely related constructs. Models of working memory often incorporate an attention component, and some even equate working memory and attentional control. Although some attention-related processes, including inhibitory control of response conflict and interference resolution, are strongly associated with working memory, for other aspects of attention the link is less clear. We examined the association between working-memory performance and attentional breadth, the ability to spread attention spatially. If the link between attention and working memory is broader than inhibitory and interference resolution processes, then working-memory performance might also be associated with other attentional abilities, including attentional breadth. We tested 123 participants on a variety of working-memory and attentional-breadth measures, finding a strong correlation between performances on these two types of tasks. This finding demonstrates that the link between working memory and attention extends beyond inhibitory processes.
Theeuwes, J.; Kramer, A.F.; Irwin, D.E.
The current study shows that spatial visual attention is used to retrieve information from visual working memory. Participants had to keep four colored circles in visual working memory. While keeping this information in memory we asked whether one of the colors was present in the array. While
Belopolsky, A.V.; Theeuwes, J.
The present study systematically examined the role of attention in maintenance of spatial representations in working memory as proposed by the attention-based rehearsal hypothesis [Awh, E., Jonides, J., & Reuter-Lorenz, P. A. (1998). Rehearsal in spatial working memory. Journal of Experimental
van Dijck, Jean-Philippe; Abrahamse, Elger L; Majerus, Steve; Fias, Wim
The ability to maintain the serial order of events is recognized as a major function of working memory. Although general models of working memory postulate a close link between working memory and attention, such a link has so far not been proposed specifically for serial-order working memory. The present study provided the first empirical demonstration of a direct link between serial order in verbal working memory and spatial selective attention. We show that the retrieval of later items of a sequence stored in working memory-compared with that of earlier items-produces covert attentional shifts toward the right. This observation suggests the conceptually surprising notion that serial-order working memory, even for nonspatially defined verbal items, draws on spatial attention.
Louise A. Brown
Working memory is vulnerable to age-related decline, but there is debate regarding the age-sensitivity of different forms of spatial-sequential working memory task, depending on their passive or active nature. The functional architecture of spatial working memory was therefore explored in younger (18–40 years) and older (64–85 years) adults, using passive and active recall tasks. Spatial working memory was assessed using a modified version of the Spatial Span subtest of the Wechsler Memory Sc...
Roberts, William A; MacDonald, Hayden; Brown, Lyn; Macpherson, Krista
A three-phase procedure was used to produce proactive interference (PI) in one trial on an eight-arm radial maze. Rats were forced to enter four arms for reward on an initial interference phase, to then enter the four remaining arms on a target phase, and to then choose among all eight arms on a retention test, with only the arms not visited in the target phase containing reward. Control trials involved only the target phase and the retention test. Lower accuracy was found on PI trials than on control trials, but performance on PI trials significantly exceeded chance, showing some retention of target memories. Changes in temporal and reward variables between the interference, target, and retention test phases showed release from PI, but changes in context and pattern of arm entry did not. It is suggested that the release from PI paradigm can be used to understand spatial memory encoding in rats and other species.
Boon, Paul J.; Belopolsky, Artem V.; Theeuwes, Jan
Visual-spatial working memory (VSWM) helps us to maintain and manipulate visual information in the absence of sensory input. It has been proposed that VSWM is an emergent property of the oculomotor system. In the present study we investigated the role of the oculomotor system in updating of spatial working memory representations across saccades. Participants had to maintain a location in memory while making a saccade to a different location. During the saccade the target was displaced, which ...
Postle, Bradley R; Desposito, Mark; Corkin, Suzanne
We tested the hypothesis that a verbal coding mechanism is necessarily engaged by object, but not spatial, visual working memory tasks. We employed a dual-task procedure that paired n-back working memory tasks with domain-specific distractor trials inserted into each interstimulus interval of the n-back tasks. In two experiments, object n-back performance demonstrated greater sensitivity to verbal distraction, whereas spatial n-back performance demonstrated greater sensitivity to motion distraction. Visual object and spatial working memory may differ fundamentally in that the mnemonic representation of featural characteristics of objects incorporates a verbal (perhaps semantic) code, whereas the mnemonic representation of the location of objects does not. Thus, the processes supporting working memory for these two types of information may differ in more ways than those dictated by the "what/where" organization of the visual system, a fact more easily reconciled with a component process than a memory systems account of working memory function.
Morey, Candice C.; Miron, Monica D.
Among models of working memory, there is not yet a consensus about how to describe functions specific to storing verbal or visual-spatial memories. We presented aural-verbal and visual-spatial lists simultaneously and sometimes cued one type of information after presentation, comparing accuracy in conditions with and without informative…
Sprague, Thomas C; Ester, Edward F; Serences, John T
Working memory (WM) enables the maintenance and manipulation of information relevant to behavioral goals. Variability in WM ability is strongly correlated with IQ , and WM function is impaired in many neurological and psychiatric disorders [2, 3], suggesting that this system is a core component of higher cognition. WM storage is thought to be mediated by patterns of activity in neural populations selective for specific properties (e.g., color, orientation, location, and motion direction) of memoranda [4-13]. Accordingly, many models propose that differences in the amplitude of these population responses should be related to differences in memory performance [14, 15]. Here, we used functional magnetic resonance imaging and an image reconstruction technique based on a spatial encoding model  to visualize and quantify population-level memory representations supported by multivoxel patterns of activation within regions of occipital, parietal and frontal cortex while participants precisely remembered the location(s) of zero, one, or two small stimuli. We successfully reconstructed images containing representations of the remembered-but not forgotten-locations within regions of occipital, parietal, and frontal cortex using delay-period activation patterns. Critically, the amplitude of representations of remembered locations and behavioral performance both decreased with increasing memory load. These results suggest that differences in visual WM performance between memory load conditions are mediated by changes in the fidelity of large-scale population response profiles distributed across multiple areas of human cortex. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Postle, Bradley R.; Idzikowski, Christopher; Sala, Sergio Della; Logie, Robert H.; Baddeley, Alan D.
In the late 1970s/early 1980s, Baddeley and colleagues conducted a series of experiments investigating the role of eye movements in visual working memory. Although only described briefly in a book (Baddeley, 1986), these studies have influenced a remarkable number of empirical and theoretical developments in fields ranging from experimental psychology to human neuropsychology to nonhuman primate electrophysiology. This paper presents, in full detail, three critical studies from this series, t...
Johnson, Jeffrey S.; Spencer, John P.
Studies examining the relationship between spatial attention and spatial working memory (SWM) have shown that discrimination responses are faster for targets appearing at locations that are being maintained in SWM, and that location memory is impaired when attention is withdrawn during the delay. These observations support the proposal that sustained attention is required for successful retention in SWM: if attention is withdrawn, memory representations are likely to fail, increasing errors. In the present study, this proposal is reexamined in light of a neural process model of SWM. On the basis of the model's functioning, we propose an alternative explanation for the observed decline in SWM performance when a secondary task is performed during retention: SWM representations drift systematically toward the location of targets appearing during the delay. To test this explanation, participants completed a color-discrimination task during the delay interval of a spatial recall task. In the critical shifting attention condition, the color stimulus could appear either toward or away from the memorized location relative to a midline reference axis. We hypothesized that if shifting attention during the delay leads to the failure of SWM representations, there should be an increase in the variance of recall errors but no change in directional error, regardless of the direction of the shift. Conversely, if shifting attention induces drift of SWM representations—as predicted by the model—there should be systematic changes in the pattern of spatial recall errors depending on the direction of the shift. Results were consistent with the latter possibility—recall errors were biased toward the location of discrimination targets appearing during the delay. PMID:26810574
Johnson, Jeffrey S; Spencer, John P
Studies examining the relationship between spatial attention and spatial working memory (SWM) have shown that discrimination responses are faster for targets appearing at locations that are being maintained in SWM, and that location memory is impaired when attention is withdrawn during the delay. These observations support the proposal that sustained attention is required for successful retention in SWM: If attention is withdrawn, memory representations are likely to fail, increasing errors. In the present study, this proposal was reexamined in light of a neural-process model of SWM. On the basis of the model's functioning, we propose an alternative explanation for the observed decline in SWM performance when a secondary task is performed during retention: SWM representations drift systematically toward the location of targets appearing during the delay. To test this explanation, participants completed a color discrimination task during the delay interval of a spatial-recall task. In the critical shifting-attention condition, the color stimulus could appear either toward or away from the midline reference axis, relative to the memorized location. We hypothesized that if shifting attention during the delay leads to the failure of SWM representations, there should be an increase in the variance of recall errors, but no change in directional errors, regardless of the direction of the shift. Conversely, if shifting attention induces drift of SWM representations-as predicted by the model-systematic changes in the patterns of spatial-recall errors should occur that would depend on the direction of the shift. The results were consistent with the latter possibility-recall errors were biased toward the locations of discrimination targets appearing during the delay.
Rossi-Arnaud, C; Pieroni, L; Baddeley, A
Three experiments study the impact of symmetry on a sequential block tapping immediate memory task in human subjects. Experiment 1 shows an advantage from vertical symmetry over non-symmetrical sequences, while finding no effect of horizontal or diagonal symmetry. Experiment 2 tests the possible role of verbal labeling by means of a secondary task that prevents this by articulatory suppression. No evidence of verbalization was observed. A third study examines the effects of a concurrent executive load, finding an overall impairment, that did not differ between symmetrical and asymmetric patterns, suggesting that the effect of symmetry reflects automatic rather than executive processes. Implications for the episodic buffer component of working memory are discussed.
Pan, Yi; Luo, Qianying; Cheng, Min
Previous research has indicated that attention can be biased toward those stimuli matching the contents of working memory and thereby facilitates visual processing at the location of the memory-matching stimuli. However, whether this working memory-driven attentional modulation takes place on early perceptual processes remains unclear. Our present results showed that working memory-driven attention improved identification of a brief Landolt target presented alone in the visual field. Because the suprathreshold target appeared without any external noise added (i.e., no distractors or masks), the results suggest that working memory-driven attention enhances the target signal at early perceptual stages of visual processing. Furthermore, given that performance in the Landolt target identification task indexes spatial resolution, this attentional facilitation indicates that working memory-driven attention can boost early perceptual processing via enhancement of spatial resolution at the attended location.
Luis A. Uresti-Cabrera
Full Text Available Objective. To evaluate the effect of age-related cognitive changes in a visuomotor learning task that depends on strategic control and contrast it with the effect in a task principally depending on visuomotor recalibration. Methods. Participants performed a ball throwing task while donning either a reversing dove prism or a displacement wedge prism, which mainly depend on strategic control or visuomotor recalibration, respectively. Visuomotor performance was then analysed in relation to rule acquisition and reversal, recognition memory, visual memory, spatial planning, and spatial working memory with tasks from the Cambridge Neuropsychological Test Automated Battery (CANTAB. Results. The results confirmed previous works showing a detrimental effect of age on visuomotor learning. The analyses of the cognitive changes observed across age showed that both strategic control and visuomotor recalibration had significant negative correlations only with the number of errors in the spatial working memory task. However, when the effect of aging was controlled, the only significant correlation remaining was between the reversal adaptation magnitude and spatial working memory. Discussion. These results suggest that spatial working memory decline across aging could contribute to age-dependent deterioration in both visuomotor learning processes. However, spatial working memory integrity seems to affect strategic learning decline even after controlling for aging.
Uresti-Cabrera, Luis A; Diaz, Rosalinda; Vaca-Palomares, Israel; Fernandez-Ruiz, Juan
To evaluate the effect of age-related cognitive changes in a visuomotor learning task that depends on strategic control and contrast it with the effect in a task principally depending on visuomotor recalibration. Participants performed a ball throwing task while donning either a reversing dove prism or a displacement wedge prism, which mainly depend on strategic control or visuomotor recalibration, respectively. Visuomotor performance was then analysed in relation to rule acquisition and reversal, recognition memory, visual memory, spatial planning, and spatial working memory with tasks from the Cambridge Neuropsychological Test Automated Battery (CANTAB). The results confirmed previous works showing a detrimental effect of age on visuomotor learning. The analyses of the cognitive changes observed across age showed that both strategic control and visuomotor recalibration had significant negative correlations only with the number of errors in the spatial working memory task. However, when the effect of aging was controlled, the only significant correlation remaining was between the reversal adaptation magnitude and spatial working memory. These results suggest that spatial working memory decline across aging could contribute to age-dependent deterioration in both visuomotor learning processes. However, spatial working memory integrity seems to affect strategic learning decline even after controlling for aging.
Full Text Available According to numerous studies, working memory is not a unitary system. Baddeley's model of working memory includes besides central executive also two separate systems for verbal and visuo-spatial information processing. A modality- and process-specific specialization presumably exists in working memory system of the frontal lobes. In our preliminary study, we have used functional magnetic resonance imaging to study the pattern of cortical activation during spatial and verbal n-back task in six healthy subjects. A bilateral fronto-parietal cortical network was activated in both tasks. There was larger activation of right parietal and bilateral occipital areas in spatial than in vebal task. Activation of left sensorimotor area was larger in verbal compared to spatial task. No task-specific differences were found in the prefrontal cortex. Our results support the assumption that modality-specific processes exist within the working-memory system.
Cocchi, Luca; Schenk, Françoise; Volken, Henri
patients with schizophrenia and matched controls in a new working memory paradigm involving dynamic (the Ball Flight Task - BFT) or static (the Static Pattern Task - SPT) visual stimuli. In the BFT, the responses of the patients were apparently based on the retention of the last set of segments...... that visuo-spatial working memory can simply be dissociated into visual and spatial sub-components....
Berggren, Nick; Eimer, Martin
During the retention of visual information in working memory, event-related brain potentials show a sustained negativity over posterior visual regions contralateral to the side where memorized stimuli were presented. This contralateral delay activity (CDA) is generally believed to be a neural marker of working memory storage. In two experiments, we contrasted this storage account of the CDA with the alternative hypothesis that the CDA reflects the current focus of spatial attention on a subset of memorized items set up during the most recent encoding episode. We employed a sequential loading procedure where participants memorized four task-relevant items that were presented in two successive memory displays (M1 and M2). In both experiments, CDA components were initially elicited contralateral to task-relevant items in M1. Critically, the CDA switched polarity when M2 displays appeared on the opposite side. In line with the attentional activation account, these reversed CDA components exclusively reflected the number of items that were encoded from M2 displays, irrespective of how many M1 items were already held in working memory. On trials where M1 and M2 displays were presented on the same side and on trials where M2 displays appeared nonlaterally, CDA components elicited in the interval after M2 remained sensitive to a residual trace of M1 items, indicating that some activation of previously stored items was maintained across encoding episodes. These results challenge the hypothesis that CDA amplitudes directly reflect the total number of stored objects and suggest that the CDA is primarily sensitive to the activation of a subset of working memory representations within the current focus of spatial attention.
Bae, Gi-Yeul; Luck, Steven J
In human scalp EEG recordings, both sustained potentials and alpha-band oscillations are present during the delay period of working memory tasks and may therefore reflect the representation of information in working memory. However, these signals may instead reflect support mechanisms rather than the actual contents of memory. In particular, alpha-band oscillations have been tightly tied to spatial attention and may not reflect location-independent memory representations per se. To determine how sustained and oscillating EEG signals are related to attention and working memory, we attempted to decode which of 16 orientations was being held in working memory by human observers (both women and men). We found that sustained EEG activity could be used to decode the remembered orientation of a stimulus, even when the orientation of the stimulus varied independently of its location. Alpha-band oscillations also carried clear information about the location of the stimulus, but they provided little or no information about orientation independently of location. Thus, sustained potentials contain information about the object properties being maintained in working memory, consistent with previous evidence of a tight link between these potentials and working memory capacity. In contrast, alpha-band oscillations primarily carry location information, consistent with their link to spatial attention. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Working memory plays a key role in cognition, and working memory is impaired in several neurological and psychiatric disorders. Previous research has suggested that human scalp EEG recordings contain signals that reflect the neural representation of information in working memory. However, to conclude that a neural signal actually represents the object being remembered, it is necessary to show that the signal contains fine-grained information about that object. Here, we show that sustained voltages in human EEG recordings contain fine-grained information about the
Wong, Jason H; Peterson, Matthew S
Relationships between visual attention, saccade programming, and visual working memory have been hypothesized for over a decade. Awh, Jonides, and Reuter-Lorenz (Journal of Experimental Psychology: Human Perception and Performance 24(3):780-90, 1998) and Awh et al. (Psychological Science 10(5):433-437, 1999) proposed that rehearsing a location in memory also leads to enhanced attentional processing at that location. In regard to eye movements, Belopolsky and Theeuwes (Attention, Perception & Psychophysics 71(3):620-631, 2009) found that holding a location in working memory affects saccade programming, albeit negatively. In three experiments, we attempted to replicate the findings of Belopolsky and Theeuwes (Attention, Perception & Psychophysics 71(3):620-631, 2009) and determine whether the spatial memory effect can occur in other saccade-cuing paradigms, including endogenous central arrow cues and exogenous irrelevant singletons. In the first experiment, our results were the opposite of those in Belopolsky and Theeuwes (Attention, Perception & Psychophysics 71(3):620-631, 2009), in that we found facilitation (shorter saccade latencies) instead of inhibition when the saccade target matched the region in spatial working memory. In Experiment 2, we sought to determine whether the spatial working memory effect would generalize to other endogenous cuing tasks, such as a central arrow that pointed to one of six possible peripheral locations. As in Experiment 1, we found that saccade programming was facilitated when the cued location coincided with the saccade target. In Experiment 3, we explored how spatial memory interacts with other types of cues, such as a peripheral color singleton target or irrelevant onset. In both cases, the eyes were more likely to go to either singleton when it coincided with the location held in spatial working memory. On the basis of these results, we conclude that spatial working memory and saccade programming are likely to share common
Voyer, Daniel; Voyer, Susan D; Saint-Aubin, Jean
Visual-spatial working memory measures are widely used in clinical and experimental settings. Furthermore, it has been argued that the male advantage in spatial abilities can be explained by a sex difference in visual-spatial working memory. Therefore, sex differences in visual-spatial working memory have important implication for research, theory, and practice, but they have yet to be quantified. The present meta-analysis quantified the magnitude of sex differences in visual-spatial working memory and examined variables that might moderate them. The analysis used a set of 180 effect sizes from healthy males and females drawn from 98 samples ranging in mean age from 3 to 86 years. Multilevel meta-analysis was used on the overall data set to account for non-independent effect sizes. The data also were analyzed in separate task subgroups by means of multilevel and mixed-effects models. Results showed a small but significant male advantage (mean d = 0.155, 95 % confidence interval = 0.087-0.223). All the tasks produced a male advantage, except for memory for location, where a female advantage emerged. Age of the participants was a significant moderator, indicating that sex differences in visual-spatial working memory appeared first in the 13-17 years age group. Removing memory for location tasks from the sample affected the pattern of significant moderators. The present results indicate a male advantage in visual-spatial working memory, although age and specific task modulate the magnitude and direction of the effects. Implications for clinical applications, cognitive model building, and experimental research are discussed.
Carretti, Barbara; Lanfranchi, Silvia; Mammarella, Irene C.
Earlier research showed that visuospatial working memory (VSWM) is better preserved in Down syndrome (DS) than verbal WM. Some differences emerged, however, when VSWM performance was broken down into its various components, and more recent studies revealed that the spatial-simultaneous component of VSWM is more impaired than the spatial-sequential…
Epstein, Michael L; Emmanouil, Tatiana A
A number of studies have provided evidence that the visual system statistically summarizes large amounts of information that would exceed the limitations of attention and working memory (ensemble coding). However the necessity of working memory resources for ensemble coding has not yet been tested directly. In the current study, we used a dual task design to test the effect of object and spatial visual working memory load on size averaging accuracy. In Experiment 1, we tested participants' accuracy in comparing the mean size of two sets under various levels of object visual working memory load. Although the accuracy of average size judgments depended on the difference in mean size between the two sets, we found no effect of working memory load. In Experiment 2, we tested the same average size judgment while participants were under spatial visual working memory load, again finding no effect of load on averaging accuracy. Overall our results reveal that ensemble coding can proceed unimpeded and highly accurately under both object and spatial visual working memory load, providing further evidence that ensemble coding reflects a basic perceptual process distinct from that of individual object processing.
Godijn, R.J.; Theeuwes, J.
In the present study, we examined whether eye movements facilitate retention of visuo-spatial information in working memory. In two experiments, participants memorised the sequence of the spatial locations of six digits across a retention interval. In some conditions, participants were free to move
Mammarella, Nicola; Fairfield, Beth; Di Domenico, Alberto
Two experiments examined the effects of spatial and temporal contiguities in a working memory binding task that required participants to remember coloured objects. In Experiment 1, a black and white drawing and a corresponding phrase that indicated its colour perceptually were either near or far (spatial study condition), while in Experiment 2,…
Starc, Martina; Anticevic, Alan; Repovš, Grega
Pupillometry provides an accessible option to track working memory processes with high temporal resolution. Several studies showed that pupil size increases with the number of items held in working memory; however, no study has explored whether pupil size also reflects the quality of working memory representations. To address this question, we used a spatial working memory task to investigate the relationship of pupil size with spatial precision of responses and indicators of reliance on generalized spatial categories. We asked 30 participants (15 female, aged 19-31) to remember the position of targets presented at various locations along a hidden radial grid. After a delay, participants indicated the remembered location with a high-precision joystick providing a parametric measure of trial-to-trial accuracy. We recorded participants' pupil dilations continuously during task performance. Results showed a significant relation between pupil dilation during preparation/early encoding and the precision of responses, possibly reflecting the attentional resources devoted to memory encoding. In contrast, pupil dilation at late maintenance and response predicted larger shifts of responses toward prototypical locations, possibly reflecting larger reliance on categorical representation. On an intraindividual level, smaller pupil dilations during encoding predicted larger dilations during late maintenance and response. On an interindividual level, participants relying more on categorical representation also produced larger precision errors. The results confirm the link between pupil size and the quality of spatial working memory representation. They suggest compensatory strategies of spatial working memory performance-loss of precise spatial representation likely increases reliance on generalized spatial categories. © 2017 Society for Psychophysiological Research.
Curtis, Ashley F; Turner, Gary R; Park, Norman W; Murtha, Susan J E
Spatially informative auditory and vibrotactile (cross-modal) cues can facilitate attention but little is known about how similar cues influence visual spatial working memory (WM) across the adult lifespan. We investigated the effects of cues (spatially informative or alerting pre-cues vs. no cues), cue modality (auditory vs. vibrotactile vs. visual), memory array size (four vs. six items), and maintenance delay (900 vs. 1800 ms) on visual spatial location WM recognition accuracy in younger adults (YA) and older adults (OA). We observed a significant interaction between spatially informative pre-cue type, array size, and delay. OA and YA benefitted equally from spatially informative pre-cues, suggesting that attentional orienting prior to WM encoding, regardless of cue modality, is preserved with age. Contrary to predictions, alerting pre-cues generally impaired performance in both age groups, suggesting that maintaining a vigilant state of arousal by facilitating the alerting attention system does not help visual spatial location WM.
Mochizuki, Kei; Funahashi, Shintaro
While neurons in the lateral prefrontal cortex (PFC) encode spatial information during the performance of working memory tasks, they are also known to participate in subjective behavior such as spatial attention and action selection. In the present study, we analyzed the activity of primate PFC neurons during the performance of a free choice memory-guided saccade task in which the monkeys needed to choose a saccade direction by themselves. In trials when the receptive field location was subsequently chosen by the animal, PFC neurons with spatially selective visual response started to show greater activation before cue onset. This result suggests that the fluctuation of firing before cue presentation prematurely biased the representation of a certain spatial location and eventually encouraged the subsequent choice of that location. In addition, modulation of the activity by the animal's choice was observed only in neurons with high sustainability of activation and was also dependent on the spatial configuration of the visual cues. These findings were consistent with known characteristics of PFC neurons in information maintenance in spatial working memory function. These results suggest that precue fluctuation of spatial representation was shared and enhanced through the working memory network in the PFC and could finally influence the animal's free choice of saccade direction. The present study revealed that the PFC plays an important role in decision making in a free choice condition and that the dynamics of decision making are constrained by the network architecture embedded in this cortical area. Copyright © 2016 the American Physiological Society.
While neurons in the lateral prefrontal cortex (PFC) encode spatial information during the performance of working memory tasks, they are also known to participate in subjective behavior such as spatial attention and action selection. In the present study, we analyzed the activity of primate PFC neurons during the performance of a free choice memory-guided saccade task in which the monkeys needed to choose a saccade direction by themselves. In trials when the receptive field location was subsequently chosen by the animal, PFC neurons with spatially selective visual response started to show greater activation before cue onset. This result suggests that the fluctuation of firing before cue presentation prematurely biased the representation of a certain spatial location and eventually encouraged the subsequent choice of that location. In addition, modulation of the activity by the animal's choice was observed only in neurons with high sustainability of activation and was also dependent on the spatial configuration of the visual cues. These findings were consistent with known characteristics of PFC neurons in information maintenance in spatial working memory function. These results suggest that precue fluctuation of spatial representation was shared and enhanced through the working memory network in the PFC and could finally influence the animal's free choice of saccade direction. The present study revealed that the PFC plays an important role in decision making in a free choice condition and that the dynamics of decision making are constrained by the network architecture embedded in this cortical area. PMID:26490287
Rolle, Camarin E; Anguera, Joaquin A; Skinner, Sasha N; Voytek, Bradley; Gazzaley, Adam
Daily experiences demand both focused and broad allocation of attention for us to interact efficiently with our complex environments. Many types of attention have shown age-related decline, although there is also evidence that such deficits may be remediated with cognitive training. However, spatial attention abilities have shown inconsistent age-related differences, and the extent of potential enhancement of these abilities remains unknown. Here, we assessed spatial attention in both healthy younger and older adults and trained this ability in both age groups for 5 hr over the course of 2 weeks using a custom-made, computerized mobile training application. We compared training-related gains on a spatial attention assessment and spatial working memory task to age-matched controls who engaged in expectancy-matched, active placebo computerized training. Age-related declines in spatial attention abilities were observed regardless of task difficulty. Spatial attention training led to improved focused and distributed attention abilities as well as improved spatial working memory in both younger and older participants. No such improvements were observed in either of the age-matched control groups. Note that these findings were not a function of improvements in simple response time, as basic motoric function did not change after training. Furthermore, when using change in simple response time as a covariate, all findings remained significant. These results suggest that spatial attention training can lead to enhancements in spatial working memory regardless of age.
Rolle, Camarin E.; Anguera, Joaquin A.; Skinner, Sasha N.; Voytek, Bradley; Gazzaley, Adam
Daily experiences demand both focused and broad allocation of attention for us to interact efficiently with our complex environments. Many types of attention have shown age-related decline, although there is also evidence that such deficits may be remediated with cognitive training. However, spatial attention abilities have shown inconsistent age-related differences, and the extent of potential enhancement of these abilities remains unknown. Here, we assessed spatial attention in both healthy younger and older adults and trained this ability in both age groups for 5 hr over the course of 2 weeks using a custom-made, computerized mobile training application. We compared training-related gains on a spatial attention assessment and spatial working memory task to age-matched controls who engaged in expectancy-matched, active placebo computerized training. Age-related declines in spatial attention abilities were observed regardless of task difficulty. Spatial attention training led to improved focused and distributed attention abilities as well as improved spatial working memory in both younger and older participants. No such improvements were observed in either of the age-matched control groups. Note that these findings were not a function of improvements in simple response time, as basic motoric function did not change after training. Furthermore, when using change in simple response time as a covariate, all findings remained significant. These results suggest that spatial attention training can lead to enhancements in spatial working memory regardless of age. PMID:28654361
Belopolsky, Artem V; Theeuwes, Jan
The present study systematically examined the role of attention in maintenance of spatial representations in working memory as proposed by the attention-based rehearsal hypothesis [Awh, E., Jonides, J., & Reuter-Lorenz, P. A. (1998). Rehearsal in spatial working memory. Journal of Experimental Psychology--Human Perception and Performance, 24(3), 780-790]. Three main issues were examined. First, Experiments 1-3 demonstrated that inhibition and not facilitation of visual processing is often observed at the memorized location during the retention interval. This inhibition was caused by keeping a location in memory and not by the exogenous nature of the memory cue. Second, Experiment 4 showed that inhibition of the memorized location does not lead to any significant impairment in memory accuracy. Finally, Experiment 5 connected current results to the previous findings and demonstrated facilitation of processing at the memorized location. Importantly, facilitation of processing did not lead to more accurate memory performance. The present results challenge the functional role of attention in maintenance of spatial working memory representations.
van Dijck, Jean-Philippe; Abrahamse, Elger L; Acar, Freya; Ketels, Boris; Fias, Wim
Rather than reflecting the long-term memory construct of a mental number line, it has been proposed that the relation between numbers and space is of a more temporary nature and constructed in working memory during task execution. In three experiments we further explored the viability of this working memory account. Participants performed a speeded dot detection task with dots appearing left or right, while maintaining digits or letters in working memory. Just before presentation of the dot, these digits or letters were used as central cues. These experiments show that the "attentional SNARC-effect" (where SNARC is the spatial-numerical association of response codes) is not observed when only the lastly perceived number cue--and no serially ordered sequence of cues--is maintained in working memory (Experiment 1). It is only when multiple items (numbers in Experiment 2; letters in Experiment 3) are stored in working memory in a serially organized way that the attentional cueing effect is observed as a function of serial working memory position. These observations suggest that the "attentional SNARC-effect" is strongly working memory based. Implications for theories on the mental representation of numbers are discussed.
Fürstenberg, A; Rummer, R; Schweppe, J
This work contributes to the understanding of the visual similarity effect in verbal working memory, a finding that suggests that the visuo-spatial sketch pad-the system in Baddeley's working memory model specialised in retaining nonverbal visual information-might be involved in the retention of visually presented verbal materials. Crucially this effect is implicitly interpreted by the most influential theory of multimedia learning as evidence for an obligatory involvement of the visuo-spatial sketch pad. We claim that it is only involved when the functioning of the working memory component normally used for processing verbal material is impaired. In this article we review the studies that give rise to the idea of obligatory involvement of the visuo-spatial sketch pad and suggest that some findings can be understood with reference to orthographic rather than visual similarity. We then test an alternative explanation of the finding that is most apt to serve as evidence for obligatory involvement of the visuo-spatial sketch pad. We conclude that, in healthy adults and under normal learning conditions, the visual similarity effect can be explained within the framework of verbal working memory proposed by Baddeley (e.g., 1986, 2000) without additional premises regarding the visuo-spatial sketch.
Towler, John; Kelly, Maria; Eimer, Martin
The capacity of visual working memory for faces is extremely limited, but the reasons for these limitations remain unknown. We employed event-related brain potential measures to demonstrate that individual faces have to be focally attended in order to be maintained in working memory, and that attention is allocated to only a single face at a time. When 2 faces have to be memorized simultaneously in a face identity-matching task, the focus of spatial attention during encoding predicts which of these faces can be successfully maintained in working memory and matched to a subsequent test face. We also show that memory representations of attended faces are maintained in a position-dependent fashion. These findings demonstrate that the limited capacity of face memory is directly linked to capacity limits of spatial attention during the encoding and maintenance of individual face representations. We suggest that the capacity and distribution of selective spatial attention is a dynamic resource that constrains the capacity and fidelity of working memory for faces. © The Author 2015. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Loomis, Jack M; Klatzky, Roberta L; McHugh, Brendan; Giudice, Nicholas A
Spatial working memory can maintain representations from vision, hearing, and touch, representations referred to here as spatial images. The present experiment addressed whether spatial images from vision and hearing that are simultaneously present within working memory retain modality-specific tags or are amodal. Observers were presented with short sequences of targets varying in angular direction, with the targets in a given sequence being all auditory, all visual, or a sequential mixture of the two. On two thirds of the trials, one of the locations was repeated, and observers had to respond as quickly as possible when detecting this repetition. Ancillary detection and localization tasks confirmed that the visual and auditory targets were perceptually comparable. Response latencies in the working memory task showed small but reliable costs in performance on trials involving a sequential mixture of auditory and visual targets, as compared with trials of pure vision or pure audition. These deficits were statistically reliable only for trials on which the modalities of the matching location switched from the penultimate to the final target in the sequence, indicating a switching cost. The switching cost for the pair in immediate succession means that the spatial images representing the target locations retain features of the visual or auditory representations from which they were derived. However, there was no reliable evidence of a performance cost for mixed modalities in the matching pair when the second of the two did not immediately follow the first, suggesting that more enduring spatial images in working memory may be amodal.
Wong, Ling M.; Riggins, Tracy; Harvey, Danielle; Cabaral, Margarita; Simon, Tony J.
Individuals with chromosome 22q11.2 deletion syndrome (22q11.2DS) have been shown to have impairments in processing spatiotemporal information. The authors examined whether children with 22q11.2DS exhibit impairments in spatial working memory performance due to these weaknesses, even when controlling for maintenance of attention. Children with…
Wallentin, Mikkel; Kristensen, Line Burholt; Olsen, Jacob Hedeager
The brain's frontal eye fields (FEF), responsible for eye movement control, are known to be involved in spatial working memory (WM). In a previous fMRI experiment (Wallentin, Roepstorff & Burgess, Neuropsychologia, 2008) it was found that FEF activation was primarily related to the formation...
Vuckovich, Joseph A.; Semel, Mara E.; Baxter, Mark G.
A recent study suggests that lesions to all major areas of the cholinergic basal forebrain in the rat (medial septum, horizontal limb of the diagonal band of Broca, and nucleus basalis magnocellularis) impair a spatial working memory task. However, this experiment used a surgical technique that may have damaged cerebellar Purkinje cells. The…
Vestergaard, Martin; Madsen, Kathrine Skak; Baare, William F. C.; Skimminge, Arnold; Ejersbo, Lisser Rye; Ramsoy, Thomas Z.; Gerlach, Christian; Akeson, Per; Paulson, Olaf B.; Jernigan, Terry L.
During childhood and adolescence, ongoing white matter maturation in the fronto-parietal cortices and connecting fiber tracts is measurable with diffusion-weighted imaging. Important questions remain, however, about the links between these changes and developing cognitive functions. Spatial working memory (SWM) performance improves significantly…
Williams, Melonie; Pouget, Pierre; Boucher, Leanne; Woodman, Geoffrey F.
Theories have proposed that the maintenance of object representations in visual working memory is aided by a spatial rehearsal mechanism. In this study, we used two different approaches to test the hypothesis that overt and covert visual-spatial attention mechanisms contribute to the maintenance of object representations in visual working memory. First, we tracked observers’ eye movements while remembering a variable number of objects during change-detection tasks. We observed that during the blank retention interval, participants spontaneously shifted gaze to the locations that the objects had occupied in the memory array. Next, we hypothesized that if attention mechanisms contribute to the maintenance of object representations, then drawing attention away from the object locations during the retention interval would impair object memory during these change-detection tasks. Supporting this prediction, we found that attending to the fixation point in anticipation of a brief probe stimulus during the retention interval reduced change-detection accuracy even on the trials in which no probe occurred. These findings support models of working memory in which visual-spatial selection mechanisms contribute to the maintenance of object representations. PMID:23371773
Jian-Hong Wang; Joshua Dominie Rizak; Yan-Mei Chen; Liang Li; Xin-Tian Hu; Yuan-Ye Ma
Opiates and dopamine (DA) play key roles in learning and memory in humans and animals.Although interactions between these neurotransmitters have been found,their functional roles remain to be fully elucidated,and their dysfunction may contribute to human diseases and addiction.Here we investigated the interactions of morphine and dopaminergic neurotransmitter systems with respect to learning and memory in rhesus monkeys by using the Wisconsin General Test Apparatus (WGTA) delayed-response task.Morphine and DA agonists (SKF-38393,apomorphine and bromocriptine) or DA antagonists (SKF-83566,haloperidol and sulpiride) were co-administered to the monkeys 30 min prior to the task.We found that dose-patterned co-administration of morphine with D1 or D2 antagonists or agonists reversed the impaired spatial working memory induced by morphine or the compounds alone.For example,morphine at 0.01 mg/kg impaired spatial working memory,while morphine (0.01 mg/kg) and apomorphine (0.01 or 0.06 mg/kg) co-treatment ameliorated this effect.Our findings suggest that the interactions between morphine and dopaminergic compounds influence spatial working memory in rhesus monkeys.A better understanding of these interactive relationships may provide insights into human addiction.
Boon, Paul J; Belopolsky, Artem V; Theeuwes, Jan
Visual-spatial working memory (VSWM) helps us to maintain and manipulate visual information in the absence of sensory input. It has been proposed that VSWM is an emergent property of the oculomotor system. In the present study we investigated the role of the oculomotor system in updating of spatial working memory representations across saccades. Participants had to maintain a location in memory while making a saccade to a different location. During the saccade the target was displaced, which went unnoticed by the participants. After executing the saccade, participants had to indicate the memorized location. If memory updating fully relies on cancellation driven by extraretinal oculomotor signals, the displacement should have no effect on the perceived location of the memorized stimulus. However, if postsaccadic retinal information about the location of the saccade target is used, the perceived location will be shifted according to the target displacement. As it has been suggested that maintenance of accurate spatial representations across saccades is especially important for action control, we used different ways of reporting the location held in memory; a match-to-sample task, a mouse click or by making another saccade. The results showed a small systematic target displacement bias in all response modalities. Parametric manipulation of the distance between the to-be-memorized stimulus and saccade target revealed that target displacement bias increased over time and changed its spatial profile from being initially centered on locations around the saccade target to becoming spatially global. Taken together results suggest that we neither rely exclusively on extraretinal nor on retinal information in updating working memory representations across saccades. The relative contribution of retinal signals is not fixed but depends on both the time available to integrate these signals as well as the distance between the saccade target and the remembered location.
Plamondon, André; Akbari, Emis; Atkinson, Leslie; Steiner, Meir; Meaney, Michael J; Fleming, Alison S
Experimental evidence in rodents shows that maternal stress during pregnancy (MSDP) negatively impacts spatial learning and memory in the offspring. We aim to investigate the association between MSDP (i.e., life events) and spatial working memory, as well as attention skills (attention shifting and attention focusing), in humans. The moderating roles of child sex, maternal anxiety during pregnancy and postnatal care are also investigated. Participants were 236 mother-child dyads that were followed from the second trimester of pregnancy until 4 years postpartum. Measurements included questionnaires and independent observations. MSDP was negatively associated with attention shifting at 18 months when concurrent maternal anxiety was low. MSDP was associated with poorer spatial working memory at 4 years of age, but only for boys who experienced poorer postnatal care. Consistent with results observed in rodents, MSDP was found to be associated with spatial working memory and attention skills. These results point to postnatal care and maternal anxiety during pregnancy as potential targets for interventions that aim to buffer children from the detrimental effects of MSDP. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Full Text Available Asiatic acid is a pentacyclic triterpene from Centella asiatica. Previous studies have reported that asiatic acid exhibits antioxidant and neuroprotective activities in cell culture. It also prevents memory deficits in animal models. The objective of this study was to investigate the relationship between spatial working memory and changes in cell proliferation within the hippocampus after administration of asiatic acid to male Spraque-Dawley rats. Control rats received vehicle (propylene glycol while treated rats received asiatic acid (30 mg/kg orally for 14 or 28 days. Spatial memory was determined using the novel object location (NOL test. In animals administered asiatic acid for both 14 and 28 days, the number of Ki-67 positive cells in the subgranular zone of the dentate gyrus was significantly higher than in control animals. This was associated with a significant increase in their ability to discriminate between novel and familiar object locations in a novel object discrimination task, a hippocampus-dependent spatial memory test. Administration of asiatic acid also significantly increased doublecortin (DCX and Notch1 protein levels in the hippocampus. These findings demonstrate that asiatic acid treatment may be a potent cognitive enhancer which improves hippocampal-dependent spatial memory, likely by increasing hippocampal neurogenesis.
Wu, Ying Choon; Coulson, Seana
Three experiments tested the role of verbal versus visuo-spatial working memory in the comprehension of co-speech iconic gestures. In Experiment 1, participants viewed congruent discourse primes in which the speaker's gestures matched the information conveyed by his speech, and incongruent ones in which the semantic content of the speaker's gestures diverged from that in his speech. Discourse primes were followed by picture probes that participants judged as being either related or unrelated to the preceding clip. Performance on this picture probe classification task was faster and more accurate after congruent than incongruent discourse primes. The effect of discourse congruency on response times was linearly related to measures of visuo-spatial, but not verbal, working memory capacity, as participants with greater visuo-spatial WM capacity benefited more from congruent gestures. In Experiments 2 and 3, participants performed the same picture probe classification task under conditions of high and low loads on concurrent visuo-spatial (Experiment 2) and verbal (Experiment 3) memory tasks. Effects of discourse congruency and verbal WM load were additive, while effects of discourse congruency and visuo-spatial WM load were interactive. Results suggest that congruent co-speech gestures facilitate multi-modal language comprehension, and indicate an important role for visuo-spatial WM in these speech-gesture integration processes. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Foster, Joshua J; Bsales, Emma M; Jaffe, Russell J; Awh, Edward
An emerging view suggests that spatial position is an integral component of working memory (WM), such that non-spatial features are bound to locations regardless of whether space is relevant [1, 2]. For instance, past work has shown that stimulus position is spontaneously remembered when non-spatial features are stored. Item recognition is enhanced when memoranda appear at the same location where they were encoded [3-5], and accessing non-spatial information elicits shifts of spatial attention to the original position of the stimulus [6, 7]. However, these findings do not establish that a persistent, active representation of stimulus position is maintained in WM because similar effects have also been documented following storage in long-term memory [8, 9]. Here we show that the spatial position of the memorandum is actively coded by persistent neural activity during a non-spatial WM task. We used a spatial encoding model in conjunction with electroencephalogram (EEG) measurements of oscillatory alpha-band (8-12 Hz) activity to track active representations of spatial position. The position of the stimulus varied trial to trial but was wholly irrelevant to the tasks. We nevertheless observed active neural representations of the original stimulus position that persisted throughout the retention interval. Further experiments established that these spatial representations are dependent on the volitional storage of non-spatial features rather than being a lingering effect of sensory energy or initial encoding demands. These findings provide strong evidence that online spatial representations are spontaneously maintained in WM-regardless of task relevance-during the storage of non-spatial features. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Full Text Available The limited capacity of visual working memory necessitates attentional mechanisms that selectively update and maintain only the most task-relevant content. Psychophysical experiments have shown that the retroactive selection of memory content can be based on visual properties such as location or shape, but the neural basis for such differential selection is unknown. For example, it is not known if there are different cortical modules specialized for spatial versus feature-based mnemonic attention, in the same way that has been demonstrated for attention to perceptual input. Here, we used transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS to identify areas in human parietal and occipital cortex involved in the selection of objects from memory based on cues to their location (spatial information or their shape (featural information. We found that TMS over the supramarginal gyrus (SMG selectively facilitated spatial selection, whereas TMS over the lateral occipital cortex selectively enhanced feature-based selection for remembered objects in the contralateral visual field. Thus, different cortical regions are responsible for spatial vs. feature-based selection of working memory representations. Since the same regions are involved in attention to external events, these new findings indicate overlapping mechanisms for attentional control over perceptual input and mnemonic representations.
Morey, Candice C
Working-memory theories often include domain-specific verbal and visual stores (e.g., the phonological and visuospatial buffers of Baddeley, 1986), and some also posit more general stores thought to be capable of holding verbal or visuospatial materials (Baddeley, 2000; Cowan, 2005). However, it is currently unclear which type of store is primarily responsible for maintaining objects that include components from multiple domains. In these studies, a spatial array of letters was followed by a single probe identical to an item in the array or differing systematically in spatial location, letter identity, or their combination. Concurrent verbal rehearsal suppression impaired memory in each of these trial types in a task that required participants to remember verbal-spatial binding, but did not impair memory for spatial locations if the task did not require verbal-spatial binding for a correct response. Thus, spatial information might be stored differently when it must be bound to verbal information. This suggests that a cross-domain store such as the episodic buffer of Baddeley (2000) or the focus of attention of Cowan (2001) might be used for integrated object storage, rather than the maintenance of associations between features stored in separate domain-specific buffers.
Winter, York; Stich, Kai Petra
Memory systems have evolved under selection pressures, such as the need to remember the locations of resources or past events within spatiotemporally dynamic natural environments. The full repertoire of complex behaviours exhibited by animals in dynamic surroundings are, however, difficult to elicit within simply structured laboratory environments. We have developed a computer-controlled naturalistic environment with 64 feeders for simulating dynamic patterns of water or food resource availability (depletion and replenishment) within the laboratory. The combination of feeder and cage remote control permits the automated transfer of animals between cage and test arena and, therefore, high experimental throughput and minimal disturbance to the animals (bats and mice). In the present study, we investigated spatial working memory in nectar-feeding bats (Glossophaga soricina, Phyllostomidae) collecting food from a 64-feeder array. Feeders gave only single rewards within trials so that efficient foraging required bats to avoid depleted locations. Initially, bats tended to revisit feeders (win-stay), but within three trials changed towards a win-shift strategy. The significant avoidance of revisits could not be explained by algorithmic search guiding movement through the array nor by scent cues left by the bats themselves and, thus, the data suggest that bats remembered spatial locations depleted of food. An examination of the recency effect on spatial working memory after bats shifted to a win-shift strategy indicated that bats held more than 40 behaviour actions (feeder visits) in working memory without indication of decay. This result surpasses previous findings for other taxa.
Olver, James S; Pinney, Myra; Maruff, Paul; Norman, Trevor R
Few studies have investigated the effect of an acute psychosocial stress paradigm on impaired attention and working memory in humans. Further, the duration of any stress-related cognitive impairment remains unclear. The aim of this study was to examine the effect of an acute psychosocial stress paradigm, the Trier Social Stress, on cognitive function in healthy volunteers. Twenty-three healthy male and female subjects were exposed to an acute psychosocial stress task. Physiological measures (salivary cortisol, heart rate and blood pressure) and subjective stress ratings were measured at baseline, in anticipation of stress, immediately post-stress and after a period of rest. A neuropsychological test battery including spatial working memory and verbal memory was administered at each time point. Acute psychosocial stress produced significant increases in cardiovascular and subjective measures in the anticipatory and post-stress period, which recovered to baseline after rest. Salivary cortisol steadily declined over the testing period. Acute psychosocial stress impaired delayed verbal recall, attention and spatial working memory. Attention remained impaired, and delayed verbal recall continued to decline after rest. Acute psychosocial stress is associated with an impairment of a broad range of cognitive functions in humans and with prolonged abnormalities in attention and memory. Copyright © 2014 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
Sprague, Thomas C.; Ester, Edward F.; Serences, John T.
Working memory (WM) enables the maintenance and manipulation of information relevant to behavioral goals. Variability in WM ability is strongly correlated with IQ  and WM function is impaired in many neurological and psychiatric disorders [2, 3], suggesting that this system is a core component of higher cognition. WM storage is thought to be mediated by patterns of activity in neural populations selective for specific properties (e.g., color, orientation, location, motion direction) of mem...
Bonino, D; Ricciardi, E; Sani, L; Gentili, C; Vanello, N; Guazzelli, M; Vecchi, T; Pietrini, P
In sighted individuals, both the visual and tactile version of the same spatial working memory task elicited neural responses in the dorsal "where" cortical pathway (Ricciardi et al., 2006). Whether the neural response during the tactile working memory task is due to visually-based spatial imagery or rather reflects a more abstract, supramodal organization of the dorsal cortical pathway remains to be determined. To understand the role of visual experience on the functional organization of the dorsal cortical stream, using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) here we examined brain response in four individuals with congenital or early blindness and no visual recollection, while they performed the same tactile spatial working memory task, a one-back recognition of 2D and 3D matrices. The blind subjects showed a significant activation in bilateral posterior parietal cortex, dorsolateral and inferior prefrontal areas, precuneus, lateral occipital cortex, and cerebellum. Thus, dorsal occipito-parietal areas are involved in mental imagery dealing with spatial components in subjects without prior visual experience and in response to a non-visual task. These data indicate that recruitment of the dorsal cortical pathway in response to the tactile spatial working memory task is not mediated by visually-based imagery and that visual experience is not a prerequisite for the development of a more abstract functional organization of the dorsal stream. These findings, along with previous data indicating a similar supramodal functional organization within the ventral cortical pathway and the motion processing brain regions, may contribute to explain how individuals who are born deprived of sight are able to interact effectively with the surrounding world.
Wallentin, Mikkel; Weed, Ethan; Østergaard, Leif
, strikingly overlapping a network previously shown to be involved in recall of spatial aspects of images depicting similar scenarios. This supports a neurocognitive model of language function, where sentences establish meaning by interacting with the perceptual and working memory networks of the brain.......Abstract: The ‘‘overlapping systems'' theory of language function argues that linguistic meaning construction crucially relies on contextual information provided by ‘‘nonlinguistic'' cognitive systems, such as perception and memory. This study examines whether linguistic processing of spatial.......g., ‘‘Was he turned towards her?'') and equally concrete nonspatial content (e.g., ‘‘Was he older than her?''). We found that recall of the spatial content relative to the nonspatial content resulted in higher BOLD response in a dorsoposterior network of brain regions, most significantly in precuneus...
Mohamad Khairul Azali Sahak
Full Text Available Nigella sativa, an established historical and religion-based remedy for a wide range of health problems, is a herbal medicine known to have antioxidant and neuroprotective effects. This present study investigated the effect of Nigella sativa oil (NSO administration on the spatial memory performance (SMP of male adult rats using eight-arm radial arm maze (RAM. Twelve Sprague Dawley rats (7–9 weeks old were force-fed daily with 6.0 μL/100 g body weight of Nigella sativa oil (NSO group; n=6 or 0.1 mL/100 g body weight of corn oil (control (CO group; n=6 for a period of 20 consecutive weeks. For each weekly evaluation of SMP, one day food-deprived rats were tested by allowing each of them 3 minutes to explore the RAM for food as their rewards. Similar to the control group, the SMP of the treated group was not hindered, as indicated by the establishment of the reference and working memory components of the spatial memory. The results demonstrated that lesser mean numbers of error were observed for the NSO-treated group in both parameters as compared to the CO-treated group. NSO could therefore enhance the learning and memory abilities of the rats; there was a significant decrease in the overall mean number of working memory error (WME in the NSO-treated group.
Sahak, Mohamad Khairul Azali; Mohamed, Abdul Majid; Hashim, Noor Hashida; Hasan Adli, Durriyyah Sharifah
Nigella sativa, an established historical and religion-based remedy for a wide range of health problems, is a herbal medicine known to have antioxidant and neuroprotective effects. This present study investigated the effect of Nigella sativa oil (NSO) administration on the spatial memory performance (SMP) of male adult rats using eight-arm radial arm maze (RAM). Twelve Sprague Dawley rats (7-9 weeks old) were force-fed daily with 6.0 μ L/100 g body weight of Nigella sativa oil (NSO group; n = 6) or 0.1 mL/100 g body weight of corn oil (control) (CO group; n = 6) for a period of 20 consecutive weeks. For each weekly evaluation of SMP, one day food-deprived rats were tested by allowing each of them 3 minutes to explore the RAM for food as their rewards. Similar to the control group, the SMP of the treated group was not hindered, as indicated by the establishment of the reference and working memory components of the spatial memory. The results demonstrated that lesser mean numbers of error were observed for the NSO-treated group in both parameters as compared to the CO-treated group. NSO could therefore enhance the learning and memory abilities of the rats; there was a significant decrease in the overall mean number of working memory error (WME) in the NSO-treated group.
Pratte, Michael S; Tong, Frank
Recent fMRI decoding studies have demonstrated that early retinotopic visual areas exhibit similar patterns of activity during the perception of a stimulus and during the maintenance of that stimulus in working memory. These findings provide support for the sensory recruitment hypothesis that the mechanisms underlying perception serve as a foundation for visual working memory. However, a recent study by Ester, Serences, and Awh (2009) found that the orientation of a peripheral grating maintained in working memory could be classified from both the contralateral and ipsilateral regions of the primary visual cortex (V1), implying that, unlike perception, feature-specific information was maintained in a nonretinotopic manner. Here, we evaluated the hypothesis that early visual areas can maintain information in a spatially specific manner and will do so if the task encourages the binding of feature information to a specific location. To encourage reliance on spatially specific memory, our experiment required observers to retain the orientations of two laterally presented gratings. Multivariate pattern analysis revealed that the orientation of each remembered grating was classified more accurately based on activity patterns in the contralateral than in the ipsilateral regions of V1 and V2. In contrast, higher extrastriate areas exhibited similar levels of performance across the two hemispheres. A time-resolved analysis further indicated that the retinotopic specificity of the working memory representation in V1 and V2 was maintained throughout the retention interval. Our results suggest that early visual areas provide a cortical basis for actively maintaining information about the features and locations of stimuli in visual working memory.
Cocchi, Luca; Schenk, Françoise; Volken, Henri
patients with schizophrenia and matched controls in a new working memory paradigm involving dynamic (the Ball Flight Task - BFT) or static (the Static Pattern Task - SPT) visual stimuli. In the BFT, the responses of the patients were apparently based on the retention of the last set of segments...... that visuo-spatial working memory can simply be dissociated into visual and spatial sub-components....... of the perceived trajectory, whereas control subjects relied on a more global strategy. We assume that the patients' performances are the result of a reduced capacity in chunking visual information since they relied mainly on the retention of the last set of segments. This assumption is confirmed by the poor...
Morgan, Helen M; Jackson, Margaret C; van Koningsbruggen, Martijn G; Shapiro, Kimron L; Linden, David E J
In tasks that selectively probe visual or spatial working memory (WM) frontal and posterior cortical areas show a segregation, with dorsal areas preferentially involved in spatial (e.g. location) WM and ventral areas in visual (e.g. object identity) WM. In a previous fMRI study , we showed that right parietal cortex (PC) was more active during WM for orientation, whereas left inferior frontal gyrus (IFG) was more active during colour WM. During WM for colour-orientation conjunctions, activity in these areas was intermediate to the level of activity for the single task preferred and non-preferred information. To examine whether these specialised areas play a critical role in coordinating visual and spatial WM to perform a conjunction task, we used theta burst transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) to induce a functional deficit. Compared to sham stimulation, TMS to right PC or left IFG selectively impaired WM for conjunctions but not single features. This is consistent with findings from visual search paradigms, in which frontal and parietal TMS selectively affects search for conjunctions compared to single features, and with combined TMS and functional imaging work suggesting that parietal and frontal regions are functionally coupled in tasks requiring integration of visual and spatial information. Our results thus elucidate mechanisms by which the brain coordinates spatially segregated processing streams and have implications beyond the field of working memory. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Kara J Blacker
Full Text Available Previous work has demonstrated a distinction between maintenance of two types of spatial information in working memory (WM: spatial locations and spatial relations. While a body of work has investigated the neural mechanisms of sensory-based information like spatial locations, little is known about how spatial relations are maintained in WM. In two experiments, we used fMRI to investigate the involvement of early visual cortex in the maintenance of spatial relations in WM. In both experiments, we found less quadrant-specific BOLD activity in visual cortex when a single spatial relation, compared to a single spatial location, was held in WM. Also across both experiments, we found a consistent set of brain regions that were differentially activated during maintenance of locations versus relations. Maintaining a location, compared to a relation, was associated with greater activity in typical spatial WM regions like posterior parietal cortex and prefrontal regions. Whereas maintaining a relation, compared to a location, was associated with greater activity in the parahippocampal gyrus and precuneus/retrosplenial cortex. Further, in Experiment 2 we manipulated WM load and included trials where participants had to maintain three spatial locations or relations. Under this high load condition, the regions sensitive to locations versus relations were somewhat different than under low load. We also identified regions that were sensitive to load specifically for location or relation maintenance, as well as overlapping regions sensitive to load more generally. These results suggest that the neural substrates underlying WM maintenance of spatial locations and relations are distinct from one another and that the neural representations of these distinct types of spatial information change with load.
Caminiti, Silvia P.; Siri, Chiara; Guidi, Lucia; Antonini, Angelo; Perani, Daniela
This fMRI study deals with the neural correlates of spatial and objects working memory (SWM and OWM) in elderly subjects (ESs) and idiopathic Parkinson’s disease (IPD). Normal aging and IPD can be associated with a WM decline. In IPD population, some studies reported similar SWM and OWM deficits; others reported a greater SWM than OWM impairment. In the present fMRI research, we investigated whether compensated IPD patients and elderly subjects with comparable performance during the execution...
Thomason, Moriah E.; Race, Elizabeth; Burrows, Brittany; Whitfield-Gabrieli, Susan; Glover, Gary H.; Gabrieli, John D. E.
A core aspect of working memory (WM) is the capacity to maintain goal-relevant information in mind, but little is known about how this capacity develops in the human brain. We compared brain activation, via fMRI, between children (ages 7-12 years) and adults (ages 20-29 years) performing tests of verbal and spatial WM with varying amounts (loads)…
Feng, Xi; Krukowski, Karen; Jopson, Timothy; Rosi, Susanna
The delayed-matching-to-place (DMP) dry maze test is a variant of DMP water maze (Steele and Morris, 1999; Faizi et al. , 2012) which measures spatial working/episodic-like learning and memory that depends on both hippocampal and cortical functions (Wang and Morris, 2010; Euston et al. , 2012). Using this test we can detect normal aging related spatial working memory decline, as well as trauma induced working memory deficits. Furthermore, we recently reported that fractionated whole brain irradiation does not affect working memory in mice (Feng et al. , 2016). Here we describe the experimental setup and procedures of this behavioral test.
Louise A. Brown
Full Text Available Working memory is vulnerable to age-related decline, but there is debate regarding the age-sensitivity of different forms of spatial-sequential working memory task, depending on their passive or active nature. The functional architecture of spatial working memory was therefore explored in younger (18-40 years and older (64-85 years adults, using passive and active recall tasks. Spatial working memory was assessed using a modified version of the Spatial Span subtest of the Wechsler Memory Scale – Third Edition (WMS-III; Wechsler, 1998. Across both age groups, the effects of interference (control, visual, or spatial, and recall type (forward and backward, were investigated. There was a clear effect of age group, with younger adults demonstrating a larger spatial working memory capacity than the older adults overall. There was also a specific effect of interference, with the spatial interference task (spatial tapping reliably reducing performance relative to both the control and visual interference (dynamic visual noise conditions in both age groups and both recall types. This suggests that younger and older adults have similar dependence upon active spatial rehearsal, and that both forward and backward recall require this processing capacity. Linear regression analyses were then carried out within each age group, to assess the predictors of performance in each recall format (forward and backward. Specifically the backward recall task was significantly predicted by age, within both the younger and older adult groups. This finding supports previous literature showing lifespan linear declines in spatial-sequential working memory, and in working memory tasks from other domains, but contrasts with previous evidence that backward spatial span is no more sensitive to aging than forward span. The study suggests that backward spatial span is indeed more processing-intensive than forward span, even when both tasks include a retention period, and that age
Brown, Louise A.
Working memory is vulnerable to age-related decline, but there is debate regarding the age-sensitivity of different forms of spatial-sequential working memory task, depending on their passive or active nature. The functional architecture of spatial working memory was therefore explored in younger (18–40 years) and older (64–85 years) adults, using passive and active recall tasks. Spatial working memory was assessed using a modified version of the Spatial Span subtest of the Wechsler Memory Scale – Third Edition (WMS-III; Wechsler, 1998). Across both age groups, the effects of interference (control, visual, or spatial), and recall type (forward and backward), were investigated. There was a clear effect of age group, with younger adults demonstrating a larger spatial working memory capacity than the older adults overall. There was also a specific effect of interference, with the spatial interference task (spatial tapping) reliably reducing performance relative to both the control and visual interference (dynamic visual noise) conditions in both age groups and both recall types. This suggests that younger and older adults have similar dependence upon active spatial rehearsal, and that both forward and backward recall require this processing capacity. Linear regression analyses were then carried out within each age group, to assess the predictors of performance in each recall format (forward and backward). Specifically the backward recall task was significantly predicted by age, within both the younger and older adult groups. This finding supports previous literature showing lifespan linear declines in spatial-sequential working memory, and in working memory tasks from other domains, but contrasts with previous evidence that backward spatial span is no more sensitive to aging than forward span. The study suggests that backward spatial span is indeed more processing-intensive than forward span, even when both tasks include a retention period, and that age predicts
Brown, Louise A
Working memory is vulnerable to age-related decline, but there is debate regarding the age-sensitivity of different forms of spatial-sequential working memory task, depending on their passive or active nature. The functional architecture of spatial working memory was therefore explored in younger (18-40 years) and older (64-85 years) adults, using passive and active recall tasks. Spatial working memory was assessed using a modified version of the Spatial Span subtest of the Wechsler Memory Scale - Third Edition (WMS-III; Wechsler, 1998). Across both age groups, the effects of interference (control, visual, or spatial), and recall type (forward and backward), were investigated. There was a clear effect of age group, with younger adults demonstrating a larger spatial working memory capacity than the older adults overall. There was also a specific effect of interference, with the spatial interference task (spatial tapping) reliably reducing performance relative to both the control and visual interference (dynamic visual noise) conditions in both age groups and both recall types. This suggests that younger and older adults have similar dependence upon active spatial rehearsal, and that both forward and backward recall require this processing capacity. Linear regression analyses were then carried out within each age group, to assess the predictors of performance in each recall format (forward and backward). Specifically the backward recall task was significantly predicted by age, within both the younger and older adult groups. This finding supports previous literature showing lifespan linear declines in spatial-sequential working memory, and in working memory tasks from other domains, but contrasts with previous evidence that backward spatial span is no more sensitive to aging than forward span. The study suggests that backward spatial span is indeed more processing-intensive than forward span, even when both tasks include a retention period, and that age predicts
Elena M. Galeano Weber
Full Text Available Cognitive modeling studies in adults have established that visual working memory (WM capacity depends on the representational precision, as well as its variability from moment to moment. By contrast, visuospatial WM performance in children has been typically indexed by response accuracy—a binary measure that provides less information about precision with which items are stored. Here, we aimed at identifying whether and how children’s WM performance depends on the spatial precision and its variability over time in real-world contexts. Using smartphones, 110 Grade 3 and Grade 4 students performed a spatial WM updating task three times a day in school and at home for four weeks. Measures of spatial precision (i.e., Euclidean distance between presented and reported location were used for hierarchical modeling to estimate variability of spatial precision across different time scales. Results demonstrated considerable within-person variability in spatial precision across items within trials, from trial to trial and from occasion to occasion within days and from day to day. In particular, item-to-item variability was systematically increased with memory load and lowered with higher grade. Further, children with higher precision variability across items scored lower in measures of fluid intelligence. These findings emphasize the important role of transient changes in spatial precision for the development of WM.
Shiels, Keri; Hawk, Larry W., Jr.; Lysczek, Cynthia L.; Tannock, Rosemary; Pelham, William E., Jr.; Spencer, Sarah V.; Gangloff, Brian P.; Waschbusch, Daniel A.
Working memory is one of several putative core neurocognitive processes in attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). The present work seeks to determine whether visual-spatial working memory is sensitive to motivational incentives, a laboratory analogue of behavioral treatment. Participants were 21 children (ages 7-10) with a diagnosis of…
Mohammad Zia Ul Haq Katshu
Full Text Available While sensory processes are tuned to particular features, such as an object's specific location, color or orientation, visual working memory (vWM is assumed to store information using representations, which generalize over a feature dimension. Additionally, current vWM models presume that different features or objects are stored independently. On the other hand, configurational effects, when observed, are supposed to mainly reflect encoding strategies. We show that the location of the target, relative to the display center and boundaries, and overall memory load influenced recall precision, indicating that, like sensory processes, capacity limited vWM resources are spatially tuned. When recalling one of three memory items the target distance from the display center was overestimated, similar to the error when only one item was memorized, but its distance from the memory items' average position was underestimated, showing that not only individual memory items' position, but also the global configuration of the memory array may be stored. Finally, presenting the non-target items at recall, consequently providing landmarks and configurational information, improved precision and accuracy of target recall. Similarly, when the non-target items were translated at recall, relative to their position in the initial display, a parallel displacement of the recalled target was observed. These findings suggest that fine-grained spatial information in vWM is represented in local maps whose resolution varies with distance from landmarks, such as the display center, while coarse representations are used to store the memory array configuration. Both these representations are updated at the time of recall.
Katshu, Mohammad Zia Ul Haq; d'Avossa, Giovanni
While sensory processes are tuned to particular features, such as an object's specific location, color or orientation, visual working memory (vWM) is assumed to store information using representations, which generalize over a feature dimension. Additionally, current vWM models presume that different features or objects are stored independently. On the other hand, configurational effects, when observed, are supposed to mainly reflect encoding strategies. We show that the location of the target, relative to the display center and boundaries, and overall memory load influenced recall precision, indicating that, like sensory processes, capacity limited vWM resources are spatially tuned. When recalling one of three memory items the target distance from the display center was overestimated, similar to the error when only one item was memorized, but its distance from the memory items' average position was underestimated, showing that not only individual memory items' position, but also the global configuration of the memory array may be stored. Finally, presenting the non-target items at recall, consequently providing landmarks and configurational information, improved precision and accuracy of target recall. Similarly, when the non-target items were translated at recall, relative to their position in the initial display, a parallel displacement of the recalled target was observed. These findings suggest that fine-grained spatial information in vWM is represented in local maps whose resolution varies with distance from landmarks, such as the display center, while coarse representations are used to store the memory array configuration. Both these representations are updated at the time of recall. PMID:25259601
Full Text Available Long Homer proteins forge assemblies of signaling components involved in glutamate receptor signaling in postsynaptic excitatory neurons, including those underlying synaptic transmission and plasticity. The short immediate-early gene (IEG Homer1a can dynamically uncouple these physical associations by functional competition with long Homer isoforms. To examine the consequences of Homer1amediated uncoupling for synaptic plasticity and behavior, we generated forebrain-specific tetracycline (tet controlled expression of Venus-tagged Homer1a (H1aV in mice. We report that sustained overexpression of H1aV impaired spatial working but not reference memory. Most notably, a similar impairment was observed when H1aV expression was restricted to the dorsal hippocampus (HP, which identifies this structure as the principal cortical area for spatial working memory. Interestingly, H1aV overexpression also abolished maintenance of CA3-CA1 long-term potentiation (LTP. These impairments, generated by sustained high Homer1a levels, identify a requirement for long Homer forms in synaptic plasticity and temporal encoding of spatial memory.
Souza, Alessandra S; Thalmann, Mirko; Oberauer, Klaus
Attention helps manage the information held in visual working memory (vWM). Perceptual attention selects the stimuli to be represented in vWM, whereas internal attention prioritizes information already in vWM. In the present study we assessed the spatial precision of perceptual and internal attention in vWM. Participants encoded eight colored dots for a local-recognition test. To manipulate attention, a cue indicated the item most likely to be tested (~65% validity). The cue appeared either before the onset of the memory array (precue) or during the retention interval (retrocue). The precue guides perceptual attention to gate encoding into vWM, whereas the retrocue guides internal attention to prioritize the cued item within vWM. If attentional selection is spatially imprecise, attention should be preferentially allocated to the cued location, with a gradual drop-off of attention over space to nearby uncued locations. In this case, memory for uncued locations should vary as a function of their distance from the cued location. As compared to a no-cue condition, memory was better for validly cued items but worse for uncued items. The spatial distance between the uncued and cued locations modulated the cuing costs: Items close in space to the cued location were insulated from cuing costs. The extension of this spatial proximity effect was larger for precues than for retrocues, mostly because the benefits of attention were larger for precues. These results point to similar selection principles between perceptual and internal attention and to a critical role of spatial distance in the selection of visual representations.
Full Text Available Street crossing under traffic is an everyday activity including collision detection as well as avoidance of objects in the path of motion. Such tasks demand extraction and representation of spatio-temporal information about relevant obstacles in an optimized format. Relevant task information is extracted visually by the use of gaze movements and represented in spatial working memory. In a virtual reality traffic intersection task, subjects are confronted with a two-lane intersection where cars are appearing with different frequencies, corresponding to high and low traffic densities. Under free observation and exploration of the scenery (using unrestricted eye and head movements the overall task for the subjects was to predict the potential-of-collision (POC of the cars or to adjust an adequate driving speed in order to cross the intersection without collision (i.e., to find the free space for crossing. In a series of experiments, gaze movement parameters, task performance, and the representation of car positions within working memory at distinct time points were assessed in normal subjects as well as in neurological patients suffering from homonymous hemianopia. In the following, we review the findings of these experiments together with other studies and provide a new perspective of the role of gaze behavior and spatial memory in collision detection and avoidance, focusing on the following questions: (i which sensory variables can be identified supporting adequate collision detection? (ii How do gaze movements and working memory contribute to collision avoidance when multiple moving objects are present and (iii how do they correlate with task performance? (iv How do patients with homonymous visual field defects use gaze movements and working memory to compensate for visual field loss? In conclusion, we extend the theory of collision detection and avoidance in the case of multiple moving objects and provide a new perspective on the combined
Ding, Hao; Qin, Wen; Liang, Meng; Ming, Dong; Wan, Baikun; Li, Qiang; Yu, Chunshui
Early deafness can reshape deprived auditory regions to enable the processing of signals from the remaining intact sensory modalities. Cross-modal activation has been observed in auditory regions during non-auditory tasks in early deaf subjects. In hearing subjects, visual working memory can evoke activation of the visual cortex, which further contributes to behavioural performance. In early deaf subjects, however, whether and how auditory regions participate in visual working memory remains unclear. We hypothesized that auditory regions may be involved in visual working memory processing and activation of auditory regions may contribute to the superior behavioural performance of early deaf subjects. In this study, 41 early deaf subjects (22 females and 19 males, age range: 20-26 years, age of onset of deafness memory task than did the hearing controls. Compared with hearing controls, deaf subjects exhibited increased activation in the superior temporal gyrus bilaterally during the recognition stage. This increased activation amplitude predicted faster and more accurate working memory performance in deaf subjects. Deaf subjects also had increased activation in the superior temporal gyrus bilaterally during the maintenance stage and in the right superior temporal gyrus during the encoding stage. These increased activation amplitude also predicted faster reaction times on the spatial working memory task in deaf subjects. These findings suggest that cross-modal plasticity occurs in auditory association areas in early deaf subjects. These areas are involved in visuo-spatial working memory. Furthermore, amplitudes of cross-modal activation during the maintenance stage were positively correlated with the age of onset of hearing aid use and were negatively correlated with the percentage of lifetime hearing aid use in deaf subjects. These findings suggest that earlier and longer hearing aid use may inhibit cross-modal reorganization in early deaf subjects. Granger
Wallentin, Mikkel; Weed, Ethan; Østergaard, Leif; Mouridsen, Kim; Roepstorff, Andreas
The "overlapping systems" theory of language function argues that linguistic meaning construction crucially relies on contextual information provided by "nonlinguistic" cognitive systems, such as perception and memory. This study examines whether linguistic processing of spatial relations established by reading sentences call on the same posterior parietal neural system involved in processing spatial relations set up through visual input. Subjects read simple sentences, which presented two agents in relation to each other, and were subsequently asked to evaluate spatial (e.g., "Was he turned towards her?") and equally concrete nonspatial content (e.g., "Was he older than her?"). We found that recall of the spatial content relative to the nonspatial content resulted in higher BOLD response in a dorsoposterior network of brain regions, most significantly in precuneus, strikingly overlapping a network previously shown to be involved in recall of spatial aspects of images depicting similar scenarios. This supports a neurocognitive model of language function, where sentences establish meaning by interacting with the perceptual and working memory networks of the brain. (Copyright) 2006 Wiley-Liss, Inc.
Allen, Richard J; Castellà, Judit; Ueno, Taiji; Hitch, Graham J; Baddeley, Alan D
A visual object can be conceived of as comprising a number of features bound together by their joint spatial location. We investigate the question of whether the spatial location is automatically bound to the features or whether the two are separable, using a previously developed paradigm whereby memory is disrupted by a visual suffix. Participants were shown a sample array of four colored shapes, followed by a postcue indicating the target for recall. On randomly intermixed trials, a to-be-ignored suffix array consisting of two different colored shapes was presented between the sample and the postcue. In a random half of suffix trials, one of the suffix items overlaid the location of the target. If location was automatically encoded, one might expect the colocation of target and suffix to differentially impair performance. We carried out three experiments, cuing for recall by spatial location (Experiment 1), color or shape (Experiment 2), or both randomly intermixed (Experiment 3). All three studies showed clear suffix effects, but the colocation of target and suffix was differentially disruptive only when a spatial cue was used. The results suggest that purely visual shape-color binding can be retained and accessed without requiring information about spatial location, even when task demands encourage the encoding of location, consistent with the idea of an abstract and flexible visual working memory system.
Smyrnis, Nikolaos; Protopapa, Foteini; Tsoukas, Evangelos; Balogh, Allison; Siettos, Constantinos I; Evdokimidis, Ioannis
This study investigated the question whether spatial working memory related to movement plans (motor working memory) and spatial working memory related to spatial attention and perceptual processes (perceptual spatial working memory) share the same neurophysiological substrate or there is evidence for separate motor and perceptual working memory streams of processing. Towards this aim, ten healthy human subjects performed delayed responses to visual targets presented at different spatial locations. Two tasks were attained, one in which the spatial location of the target was the goal for a pointing movement and one in which the spatial location of the target was used for a perceptual (yes or no) change detection. Each task involved two conditions: a memory condition in which the target remained visible only for the first 250 ms of the delay period and a delay condition in which the target location remained visible throughout the delay period. The amplitude spectrum analysis of the EEG revealed that the alpha (8-12 Hz) band signal was smaller, while the beta (13-30 Hz) and gamma (30-45 Hz) band signals were larger in the memory compared to the non-memory condition. The alpha band signal difference was confined to the frontal midline area; the beta band signal difference extended over the right hemisphere and midline central area, and the gamma band signal difference was confined to the right occipitoparietal area. Importantly, both in beta and gamma bands, we observed a significant increase in the movement-related compared to the perceptual-related memory-specific amplitude spectrum signal in the central midline area. This result provides clear evidence for the dissociation of motor and perceptual spatial working memory.
van Moorselaar, Dirk; Foster, Joshua J.; Sutterer, David W.; Theeuwes, Jan; Olivers, Christian N.L.; Awh, Edward
Current theories assume a functional role for covert attention in the maintenance of spatial information in working memory. Consistent with this view, both the locus of attention and positions stored in working memory can be decoded based on the topography of oscillatory alpha-band (8-12 Hz)
Santangelo, Valerio; Finoia, Paola; Raffone, Antonino; Belardinelli, Marta Olivetti; Spence, Charles
We examined whether or not increasing visual perceptual load or visual working memory (WM) load would affect the exogenous orienting of visuo-spatial attention, in order to assess whether or not exogenous orienting is genuinely automatic. In Experiment 1, we manipulated visual perceptual load by means of a central morphing shape that in some trials morphed into a particular target shape (a rectangle) that participants had to detect. In Experiment 2, the possibility that the presentation of any changing stimulus at fixation would eliminate exogenous orienting was ruled out, by presenting two alternating letters at fixation. In Experiment 3, we manipulated visual WM load by means of arrays consisting of three (low-load) or five (high-load) randomly located coloured squares. The participants had to remember these items in order to judge whether a cued square had been presented in the same or different colour at the end of each trial. In all the experiments, exogenous visuo-spatial attentional orienting was measured by means of an orthogonal spatial cuing task, in which the participants had to discriminate the elevation (up vs. down) of a visual target previously cued by a spatially nonpredictive visual cue. The results showed that increasing the perceptual load of the task eliminated the exogenous orienting of visuo-spatial attention. By contrast, increasing the WM load had no effect on spatial orienting. These results are discussed in terms of the light that they shed on claims regarding the automaticity of visuo-spatial exogenous orienting.
Oberlin, Lauren E; Verstynen, Timothy D; Burzynska, Agnieszka Z; Voss, Michelle W; Prakash, Ruchika Shaurya; Chaddock-Heyman, Laura; Wong, Chelsea; Fanning, Jason; Awick, Elizabeth; Gothe, Neha; Phillips, Siobhan M; Mailey, Emily; Ehlers, Diane; Olson, Erin; Wojcicki, Thomas; McAuley, Edward; Kramer, Arthur F; Erickson, Kirk I
White matter structure declines with advancing age and has been associated with a decline in memory and executive processes in older adulthood. Yet, recent research suggests that higher physical activity and fitness levels may be associated with less white matter degeneration in late life, although the tract-specificity of this relationship is not well understood. In addition, these prior studies infrequently associate measures of white matter microstructure to cognitive outcomes, so the behavioral importance of higher levels of white matter microstructural organization with greater fitness levels remains a matter of speculation. Here we tested whether cardiorespiratory fitness (VO2max) levels were associated with white matter microstructure and whether this relationship constituted an indirect pathway between cardiorespiratory fitness and spatial working memory in two large, cognitively and neurologically healthy older adult samples. Diffusion tensor imaging was used to determine white matter microstructure in two separate groups: Experiment 1, N=113 (mean age=66.61) and Experiment 2, N=154 (mean age=65.66). Using a voxel-based regression approach, we found that higher VO2max was associated with higher fractional anisotropy (FA), a measure of white matter microstructure, in a diverse network of white matter tracts, including the anterior corona radiata, anterior internal capsule, fornix, cingulum, and corpus callosum (PFDR-correctedmicrostructure within these regions, among others, constituted a significant indirect path between VO2max and spatial working memory performance. These results suggest that greater aerobic fitness levels are associated with higher levels of white matter microstructural organization, which may, in turn, preserve spatial memory performance in older adulthood. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Martín-Loeches, M; Rubia, F J
Event-related potentials (ERP) were recorded while subjects memorized either the location, the color or the shape of stimuli which could be located in 1 of 4 positions relative to a central fixation point (top, bottom, left or right), be of 1 of 4 positions relative to a central fixation point (top, bottom, left or right), be of 1 of 4 colors (white, green, red or blue), and present 1 of 4 shapes (triangle, cross, circle or square). These ERP were compared to ERP recorded while subjects looked at the same stimuli but performed other control, nonmemory tasks. Only ERP corresponding to the memorization of spatial location showed a differential pattern which could be specifically attributed to memory encoding processes. This reveals an important difference in ERP modulation between a working memory subsystem for spatial location and other subsystem (or subsystems) for color or shape, which would provide evidence supporting the existence of different working memory subsystems for visual information in the brain.
Goldstein, Kim E; Hazlett, Erin A; Savage, Kimberley R; Berlin, Heather A; Hamilton, Holly K; Zelmanova, Yuliya; Look, Amy E; Koenigsberg, Harold W; Mitsis, Effie M; Tang, Cheuk Y; McNamara, Margaret; Siever, Larry J; Cohen, Barry H; New, Antonia S
Schizotypal personality disorder (SPD) individuals and borderline personality disorder (BPD) individuals have been reported to show neuropsychological impairments and abnormalities in brain structure. However, relationships between neuropsychological function and brain structure in these groups are not well understood. This study compared visual-spatial working memory (SWM) and its associations with dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC) and ventrolateral prefrontal cortex (VLPFC) gray matter volume in 18 unmedicated SPD patients with no BPD traits, 18 unmedicated BPD patients with no SPD traits, and 16 healthy controls (HC). Results showed impaired SWM in SPD but not BPD, compared with HC. Moreover, among the HC group, but not SPD patients, better SWM performance was associated with larger VLPFC (BA44/45) gray matter volume (Fisher's Z p-values <0.05). Findings suggest spatial working memory impairments may be a core neuropsychological deficit specific to SPD patients and highlight the role of VLPFC subcomponents in normal and dysfunctional memory performance. Published by Elsevier B.V.
Oakhill, Jane; Yuill, Nicola; Garnham, Alan
Working memory predicts children's reading comprehension but it is not clear whether this relation is due to a modality-specific or general working memory. This study, which investigated the relations between children's reading skills and working memory (WM) abilities in 3 modalities, extends previous work by including measures of both reading…
Rosen Glenn D
Full Text Available Abstract Background Anomalies of cortical neuronal migration (e.g., microgyria (MG and/or ectopias are associated with a variety of language and cognitive deficits in human populations. In rodents, postnatal focal freezing lesions lead to the formation of cortical microgyria similar to those seen in human dyslexic brains, and also cause subsequent deficits in rapid auditory processing similar to those reported in human language impaired populations. Thus convergent findings support the ongoing study of disruptions in neuronal migration in rats as a putative model to provide insight on human language disability. Since deficits in working memory using both verbal and non-verbal tasks also characterize dyslexic populations, the present study examined the effects of neonatally induced bilateral cortical microgyria (MG on working memory in adult male rats. Methods A delayed match-to-sample radial water maze task, in which the goal arm was altered among eight locations on a daily basis, was used to assess working memory performance in MG (n = 8 and sham (n = 10 littermates. Results Over a period of 60 sessions of testing (each session comprising one pre-delay sample trial, and one post-delay test trial, all rats showed learning as evidenced by a significant decrease in overall test errors. However, MG rats made significantly more errors than shams during initial testing, and this memory deficit was still evident after 60 days (12 weeks of testing. Analyses performed on daily error patterns showed that over the course of testing, MG rats utilized a strategy similar to shams (but with less effectiveness, as indicated by more errors. Conclusion These results indicate persistent abnormalities in the spatial working memory system in rats with induced disruptions of neocortical neuronal migration.
Wansard, Murielle; Bartolomeo, Paolo; Bastin, Christine; Segovia, Fermín; Gillet, Sophie; Duret, Christophe; Meulemans, Thierry
Over the last decade, many studies have demonstrated that visuospatial working memory (VSWM) can be divided into separate subsystems dedicated to the retention of visual patterns and their serial order. Impaired VSWM has been suggested to exacerbate left visual neglect in right-brain-damaged individuals. The aim of this study was to investigate the segregation between spatial-sequential and spatial-simultaneous working memory in individuals with neglect. We demonstrated that patterns of results on these VSWM tasks can be dissociated. Spatial-simultaneous and sequential aspects of VSWM can be selectively impaired in unilateral neglect. Our results support the hypothesis of multiple VSWM subsystems, which should be taken into account to better understand neglect-related deficits.
Wühr, Peter; Biebl, Rupert
This study investigates the impact of working memory (WM) load on response conflicts arising from spatial (non) correspondence between irrelevant stimulus location and response location (Simon effect). The dominant view attributes the Simon effect to automatic processes of location-based response priming. The automaticity view predicts insensitivity of the Simon effect to manipulations of processing load. Four experiments investigated the role of spatial and verbal WM in horizontal and vertical Simon tasks by using a dual-task approach. Participants maintained different amounts of spatial or verbal information in WM while performing a horizontal or vertical Simon task. Results showed that high load generally decreased, and sometimes eliminated, the Simon effect. It is interesting to note that spatial load had a larger impact than verbal load on the horizontal Simon effect, whereas verbal load had a larger impact than spatial load on the vertical Simon effect. The results highlight the role of WM as the perception-action interface in choice-response tasks. Moreover, the results suggest spatial coding of horizontal stimulus-response (S-R) tasks, and verbal coding of vertical S-R tasks.
Chan Raymond CK
Full Text Available Abstract Background The effects of negative emotion on different processing periods in spatial and verbal working memory (WM and the possible brain mechanism of the interaction between negative emotion and WM were explored using a high-time resolution event-related potential (ERP technique and time-locked delayed matching-to-sample task (DMST. Results Early P3b and late P3b were reduced in the negative emotion condition for both the spatial and verbal tasks at encoding. At retention, the sustained negative slow wave (NSW showed a significant interaction between emotional state and task type. Spatial trials in the negative emotion condition elicited a more negative deflection than they did in the neutral emotion condition. However, no such effect was observed for the verbal tasks. At retrieval, early P3b and late P3b were markedly more attenuated in the negative emotion condition than in the neutral emotion condition for both the spatial and verbal tasks. Conclusions The results indicate that the differential effects of negative emotion on spatial and verbal WM mainly take place during information maintenance processing, which implies that there is a systematic association between specific affects (e.g., negative emotion and certain cognitive processes (e.g., spatial retention.
Rhodes, Sinead M.; Riby, Deborah M.; Fraser, Emma; Campbell, Lorna Elise
The present study investigated verbal and spatial working memory (WM) functioning in individuals with the neuro-developmental disorder Williams syndrome (WS) using WM component tasks. While there is strong evidence of WM impairments in WS, previous research has focused on short-term memory and has neglected assessment of executive components of…
Tamber-Rosenau, Benjamin J; Fintzi, Anat R; Marois, René
Spatial resolution fundamentally limits any image representation. Although this limit has been extensively investigated for perceptual representations by assessing how neighboring flankers degrade the perception of a peripheral target with visual crowding, the corresponding limit for representations held in visual working memory (VWM) is unknown. In the present study, we evoked crowding in VWM and directly compared resolution in VWM and perception. Remarkably, the spatial resolution of VWM proved to be no worse than that of perception. However, mixture modeling of errors caused by crowding revealed the qualitatively distinct nature of these representations. Perceptual crowding errors arose from both increased imprecision in target representations and substitution of flankers for targets. By contrast, VWM crowding errors arose exclusively from substitutions, which suggests that VWM transforms analog perceptual representations into discrete items. Thus, although perception and VWM share a common resolution limit, exceeding this limit reveals distinct mechanisms for perceiving images and holding them in mind. © The Author(s) 2015.
Postle, B R; Awh, E; Jonides, J; Smith, E E; D'Esposito, M
Rehearsal in human spatial working memory is accomplished, in part, via covert shifts of spatial selective attention to memorized locations ("attention-based rehearsal"). We addressed two outstanding questions about attention-based rehearsal: the topography of the attention-based rehearsal effect, and the mechanism by which it operates. Using event-related fMRI and a procedure that randomized the presentation of trials with delay epochs that were either filled with a flickering checkerboard or unfilled, we localized the effect to extrastriate areas 18 and 19, and confirmed its absence in striate cortex. Delay-epoch activity in these extrastriate regions, as well as in superior parietal lobule and intraparietal sulcus, was also lateralized on unfilled trials, suggesting that attention-based rehearsal produces a baseline shift in areas representing the to-be-remembered location in space. No frontal regions (including frontal eye fields) demonstrated lateralized activity consistent with a role in attention-based rehearsal.
Toba, Monica N; Rabuffetti, Marco; Duret, Christophe; Pradat-Diehl, Pascale; Gainotti, Guido; Bartolomeo, Paolo
Visual neglect is a disabling consequence of right hemisphere damage, whereby patients fail to detect left-sided objects. Its precise mechanisms are debated, but there is some consensus that distinct component deficits may variously associate and interact in different patients. Here we used a touch-screen based procedure to study two putative component deficits of neglect, rightward "magnetic" attraction of attention and impaired spatial working memory, in a group of 47 right brain-damaged patients, of whom 33 had signs of left neglect. Patients performed a visual search task on three distinct conditions, whereby touched targets could (1) be tagged, (2) disappear or (3) show no change. Magnetic attraction of attention was defined as more left neglect on the tag condition than on the disappear condition, where right-sided disappeared targets could not capture patients' attention. Impaired spatial working memory should instead produce more neglect on the no change condition, where no external cue indicated that a target had already been explored, than on the tag condition. Using a specifically developed analysis algorithm, we identified significant differences of performance between the critical conditions. Neglect patients as a group performed better on the disappear condition than on the no change condition and also better in the tag condition comparing with the no change condition. No difference was found between the tag condition and the disappear condition. Some of our neglect patients had dissociated patterns of performance, with predominant magnetic attraction or impaired spatial working memory. Anatomical results issued from both grey matter analysis and fiber tracking were consistent with the typical patterns of fronto-parietal and occipito-frontal disconnection in neglect, but did not identify lesional patterns specifically associated with one or another deficit, thus suggesting the possible co-localization of attentional and working memory processes in
Lewis, Sara A; Negelspach, David C; Kaladchibachi, Sevag; Cowen, Stephen L; Fernandez, Fabian
Despite their ubiquity in biomedical research, Drosophila have yet to be widely employed as model organisms in psychology. Many complex human-like behaviors are observed in Drosophila, which exhibit elaborate displays of inter-male aggression and female courtship, self-medication with alcohol in response to stress, and even cultural transmission of social information. Here, we asked whether Drosophila can demonstrate behavioral indices of spatial working memory in a Y-maze, a classic test of memory function and novelty-seeking in rodents. Our data show that Drosophila, like rodents, alternate their visits among the three arms of a Y-maze and spontaneously favor entry into arms they have explored less recently versus ones they have just seen. These findings suggest that Drosophila possess some of the information-seeking and working memory facilities mammals depend on to navigate through space and might be relevant models for understanding human psychological phenomena such as curiosity. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Ekkel, M R; van Lier, R; Steenbergen, B
Echolocation can be beneficial for the orientation and mobility of visually impaired people. Research has shown considerable individual differences for acquiring this skill. However, individual characteristics that affect the learning of echolocation are largely unknown. In the present study, we examined individual factors that are likely to affect learning to echolocate: sustained and divided attention, working memory, and spatial abilities. To that aim, sighted participants with normal hearing performed an echolocation task that was adapted from a previously reported size-discrimination task. In line with existing studies, we found large individual differences in echolocation ability. We also found indications that participants were able to improve their echolocation ability. Furthermore, we found a significant positive correlation between improvement in echolocation and sustained and divided attention, as measured in the PASAT. No significant correlations were found with our tests regarding working memory and spatial abilities. These findings may have implications for the development of guidelines for training echolocation that are tailored to the individual with a visual impairment.
Botta, Fabiano; Lupiáñez, Juan; Sanabria, Daniel
Audiovisual links in spatial attention have been reported in many previous studies. However, the effectiveness of auditory spatial cues in biasing the information encoding into visuo-spatial working memory (VSWM) is still relatively unknown. In this study, we addressed this issue by combining a cuing paradigm with a change detection task in VSWM. Moreover, we manipulated the perceptual organization of the to-be-remembered visual stimuli. We hypothesized that the auditory effect on VSWM would depend on the perceptual association between the auditory cue and the visual probe. Results showed, for the first time, a significant auditory attentional bias in VSWM. However, the effect was observed only when the to-be-remembered visual stimuli were organized in two distinctive visual objects. We propose that these results shed new light on audio-visual crossmodal links in spatial attention suggesting that, apart from the spatio-temporal contingency, the likelihood of perceptual association between the auditory cue and the visual target can have a large impact on crossmodal attentional biases. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Full Text Available Left neglect following right hemisphere injury is a debilitating disorder that has proven extremely difficult to rehabilitate. Traditional models of neglect have focused on impaired spatial attention as the core deficit and as such, most rehabilitation methods have tried to improve attentional processes. However, many of these techniques (e.g., visual scanning training, caloric stimulation, neck muscle vibration produce only short-lived effects, or are too uncomfortable to use as a routine treatment. More recently, many investigators have begun examining the beneficial effects of prism adaptation for the treatment of neglect. Although prism adaptation has been shown to have some beneficial effects on both overt and covert spatial attention, it does not reliably alter many of the perceptual biases evident in neglect. One of the challenges of neglect rehabilitation may lie in the heterogeneous nature of the deficits. Most notably, a number of researchers have shown that neglect patients present with severe deficits in spatial working memory (SWM in addition to their attentional impairment. Given that SWM can be seen as a foundational cognitive mechanism, critical for a wide range of other functions, any deficit in SWM memory will undoubtedly have severe consequences. In the current review we examine the evidence for SWM deficits in neglect and propose that it constitutes a core component of the syndrome. We present preliminary data which suggest that at least one current rehabilitation method (prism adaptation has no effect on SWM deficits in neglect. Finally, we end by reviewing recent work that examines the effectiveness of SWM training and how SWM training may prove to be a useful avenue for future rehabilitative efforts in patients with neglect.
Kessels, Roy P C; Meulenbroek, Olga; Fernández, Guillén; Olde Rikkert, Marcel G M
Mild Cognitive Impairment (MCI) is characterized by episodic memory deficits, while aspects of working memory may also be implicated, but studies into this latter domain are scarce and results are inconclusive. Using a computerized search paradigm, this study compares 25 young adults, 25 typically aging older adults and 15 amnestic MCI patients as to their working-memory capacities for object-location information and potential differential effects of memory load and additional context cues. An age-related deficit in visuospatial working-memory maintenance was found that became more pronounced with increasing task demands. The MCI group additionally showed reduced maintenance of bound information, i.e., object-location associations, again especially at elevated memory load. No effects of contextual cueing were found. The current findings indicate that working memory should be considered when screening patients for suspected MCI and monitoring its progression.
Samuelson, Elizabeth E. W.; Chen-Wishart, Zachary P.; Gill, Richard J.; Leadbeater, Ellouise
Pesticides, including neonicotinoids, typically target pest insects by being neurotoxic. Inadvertent exposure to foraging insect pollinators is usually sub-lethal, but may affect cognition. One cognitive trait, spatial working memory, may be important in avoiding previously-visited flowers and other spatial tasks such as navigation. To test this, we investigated the effect of acute thiamethoxam exposure on spatial working memory in the bumblebee Bombus terrestris, using an adaptation of the radial-arm maze (RAM). We first demonstrated that bumblebees use spatial working memory to solve the RAM by showing that untreated bees performed significantly better than would be expected if choices were random or governed by stereotyped visitation rules. We then exposed bees to either a high sub-lethal positive control thiamethoxam dose (2.5 ng-1 bee), or one of two low doses (0.377 or 0.091 ng-1) based on estimated field-realistic exposure. The high dose caused bees to make more and earlier spatial memory errors and take longer to complete the task than unexposed bees. For the low doses, the negative effects were smaller but statistically significant, and dependent on bee size. The spatial working memory impairment shown here has the potential to harm bees exposed to thiamethoxam, through possible impacts on foraging efficiency or homing.
Kaiser, D.; Stein, T.; Peelen, M.V.
Traditional memory research has focused on measuring and modeling the capacity of visual working memory for simple stimuli such as geometric shapes or colored disks. Although these studies have provided important insights, it is unclear how their findings apply to memory for more naturalistic
Martig, Adria K.; Jones, Graham L.; Smith, Kelsey E.; Mizumori, Sheri J.Y.
Rats were tested on a hippocampus dependent win-shift working memory task in familiar or novel environments after receiving bilateral ventral tegmental area infusions of baclofen. Baclofen infusion disrupted working memory performance in both familiar and novel environments. In addition, baclofen infusion selectively disrupted short-term working memory in the novel environment. This experiment confirms selective ventral tegmental area support of accurate performance during a context dependent...
Full Text Available Behavioural ecologists increasingly recognise spatial memory as one the most influential cognitive traits involved in evolutionary processes. In particular, spatial working memory (SWM, i.e. the ability of animals to store temporarily useful information for current foraging tasks, determines the foraging efficiency of individuals. As a consequence, SWM also has the potential to influence competitive abilities and to affect patterns of sympatric occurrence among closely related species. The present study aims at comparing the efficiency of SWM between generalist (Glossophaga soricina and specialist (Leptonycteris yerbabuenae nectarivorous bats at flowering patches. The two species differ in diet--the generalist diet including seasonally fruits and insects with nectar and pollen while the specialist diet is dominated by nectar and pollen yearlong--and in some morphological traits--the specialist being heavier and with proportionally longer rostrum than the generalist. These bats are found sympatrically within part of their range in the Neotropics. We habituated captive individuals to feed on artificial flower patches and we used infrared video recordings to monitor their ability to remember and avoid the spatial location of flowers they emptied in previous visits in the course of 15-min foraging sequences. Experiments revealed that both species rely on SWM as their foraging success attained significantly greater values than random expectations. However, the nectar specialist L. yerbabuenae was significantly more efficient at extracting nectar (+28% in foraging success, and sustained longer foraging bouts (+27% in length of efficient foraging sequences than the generalist G. soricina. These contrasting SWM performances are discussed in relation to diet specialization and other life history traits.
Naef, M; Müller, U; Linssen, A; Clark, L; Robbins, T W; Eisenegger, C
Psychopharmacological studies in humans suggest important roles for dopamine (DA) D2 receptors in human executive functions, such as cognitive planning and spatial working memory (SWM). However, studies that investigate an impairment of such functions using the selective DA D2/3 receptor antagonist sulpiride have yielded inconsistent results, perhaps because relatively low doses were used. We believe we report for the first time, the effects of a higher (800 mg p.o.) single dose of sulpiride as well as of genetic variation in the DA receptor D2 gene (DA receptor D2 Taq1A polymorphism), on planning and working memory. With 78 healthy male volunteers, we apply a between-groups, placebo-controlled design. We measure outcomes in the difficult versions of the Cambridge Neuropsychological Test Automated Battery One-Touch Stockings of Cambridge and the self-ordered SWM task. Volunteers in the sulpiride group showed significant impairments in planning accuracy and, for the more difficult problems, in SWM. Sulpiride administration speeded response latencies in the planning task on the most difficult problems. Volunteers with at least one copy of the minor allele (A1+) of the DA receptor D2 Taq1A polymorphism showed better SWM capacity, regardless of whether they received sulpiride or placebo. There were no effects on blood pressure, heart rate or subjective sedation. In sum, a higher single dose of sulpiride impairs SWM and executive planning functions, in a manner independent of the DA receptor D2 Taq1A polymorphism.
Squeglia, Lindsay M; Schweinsburg, Alecia Dager; Pulido, Carmen; Tapert, Susan F
Binge drinking is prevalent during adolescence, and its effect on neurocognitive development is of concern. In adult and adolescent populations, heavy substance use has been associated with decrements in cognitive functioning, particularly on tasks of spatial working memory (SWM). Characterizing the gender-specific influences of heavy episodic drinking on SWM may help elucidate the early functional consequences of drinking on adolescent brain functioning. Forty binge drinkers (13 females, 27 males) and 55 controls (24 females, 31 males), aged 16 to 19 years, completed neuropsychological testing, substance use interviews, and an SWM task during functional magnetic resonance imaging. Significant binge drinking status × gender interactions were found (p working memory performances (p performance (p gender-specific differences in frontal, temporal, and cerebellar brain activation during an SWM task, which in turn relate to cognitive performance. Activation correlates with neuropsychological performance, strengthening the argument that blood oxygen level-dependent activation is affected by alcohol use and is an important indicator of behavioral functioning. Females may be more vulnerable to the neurotoxic effects of heavy alcohol use during adolescence, while males may be more resilient to the deleterious effects of binge drinking. Future longitudinal research will examine the significance of SWM brain activation as an early neurocognitive marker of alcohol impact to the brain on future behaviors, such as driving safety, academic performance, and neuropsychological performance. Copyright © 2011 by the Research Society on Alcoholism.
Hedge, Craig; Oberauer, Klaus; Leonards, Ute
We examined the relationship between the attentional selection of perceptual information and of information in working memory (WM) through four experiments, using a spatial WM-updating task. Participants remembered the locations of two objects in a matrix and worked through a sequence of updating operations, each mentally shifting one dot to a new location according to an arrow cue. Repeatedly updating the same object in two successive steps is typically faster than switching to the other object; this object switch cost reflects the shifting of attention in WM. In Experiment 1, the arrows were presented in random peripheral locations, drawing perceptual attention away from the selected object in WM. This manipulation did not eliminate the object switch cost, indicating that the mechanisms of perceptual selection do not underlie selection in WM. Experiments 2a and 2b corroborated the independence of selection observed in Experiment 1, but showed a benefit to reaction times when the placement of the arrow cue was aligned with the locations of relevant objects in WM. Experiment 2c showed that the same benefit also occurs when participants are not able to mark an updating location through eye fixations. Together, these data can be accounted for by a framework in which perceptual selection and selection in WM are separate mechanisms that interact through a shared spatial priority map.
Souza, Alessandra S; Vergauwe, Evie; Oberauer, Klaus
One of the functions that attention may serve in working memory (WM) is boosting information accessibility, a mechanism known as attentional refreshing. Refreshing is assumed to be a domain-general process operating on visual, spatial, and verbal representations alike. So far, few studies have directly manipulated refreshing of individual WM representations to measure the WM benefits of refreshing. Recently, a guided-refreshing method was developed, which consists of presenting cues during the retention interval of a WM task to instruct people to refresh (i.e., attend to) the cued items. Using a continuous-color reconstruction task, previous studies demonstrated that the error in reporting a color varies linearly with the frequency with which it was refreshed. Here, we extend this approach to assess the WM benefits of refreshing different representation types, from colors to spatial locations and words. Across six experiments, we show that refreshing frequency modulates performance in all stimulus domains in accordance with the tenet that refreshing is a domain-general process in WM. The benefits of refreshing were, however, larger for visual-spatial than verbal materials. © 2018 New York Academy of Sciences.
Lanfranchi, Silvia; Mammarella, Irene C; Carretti, Barbara
Several studies have suggested that individuals with Down syndrome (DS) have impairments in some aspects of the visuospatial domain. It has been reported that they are particularly impaired in the spatial-simultaneous working memory (WM) even in advantageous conditions such as when information is grouped to form a configuration. This study aimed to assess the performance of individuals with DS carrying out a spatial-simultaneous WM task in single and dual selective interference conditions in order to better explore the characteristics of their impairment in this area. Groups of individuals with DS and mentally age-matched typically developing (TD) children were asked to carry out a spatial-simultaneous WM task in a single- and in two dual-task conditions. In the single condition, the participants were required to recall an increasing number of positions of red squares presented simultaneously in a matrix. In the dual-task conditions, together with the spatial-simultaneous WM task, the participants were asked to carry out an articulatory suppression task or a tapping task. As has already been shown in other studies, individuals with DS were found to be impaired in carrying out a spatial-simultaneous WM task and showed a worse performance with respect to the TD group in both the conditions. These findings indicate that individuals with DS use the same coding modality as TD children of the same mental age. Just as the TD children, they performed lower in the dual- than in the single-task condition and there was no difference between the verbal and visuospatial conditions.
Vestergaard, Martin; Madsen, Kathrine Skak; Baaré, William F C
During childhood and adolescence, ongoing white matter maturation in the fronto-parietal cortices and connecting fiber tracts is measurable with diffusion-weighted imaging. Important questions remain, however, about the links between these changes and developing cognitive functions. Spatial working...... memory (SWM) performance improves significantly throughout the childhood years, and several lines of evidence implicate the left fronto-parietal cortices and connecting fiber tracts in SWM processing. Here we report results from a study of 76 typically developing children, 7 to 13 years of age. We...... hypothesized that better SWM performance would be associated with increased fractional anisotropy (FA) in a left fronto-parietal network composed of the superior longitudinal fasciculus (SLF), the regional white matter underlying the dorsolateral pFC, and the posterior parietal cortex. As hypothesized, we...
Amy L Griffin
Full Text Available Despite decades of research, the neural mechanisms of spatial working memory remain poorly understood. Although the dorsal hippocampus is known to be critical for memory-guided behavior, experimental evidence suggests that spatial working memory depends not only on the hippocampus itself, but also on the circuit comprised of the hippocampus and the medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC. Disruption of hippocampal-mPFC interactions may result in failed transfer of spatial and contextual information processed by the hippocampus to the circuitry in mPFC responsible for decision making and goal-directed behavior. Oscillatory synchrony between the hippocampus and mPFC has been shown to increase in tasks with high spatial working memory demand. However, the mechanisms and circuitry supporting hippocampal-mPFC interactions during these tasks is unknown. The midline thalamic nucleus reuniens (RE is reciprocally connected to both the hippocampus and the mPFC and has been shown to be critical for a variety of working memory tasks. Therefore, it is likely that hippocampal-mPFC oscillatory synchrony is modulated by RE activity. This article will review the anatomical connections between the hippocampus, mPFC and RE along with the behavioral studies that have investigated the effects of RE disruption on working memory task performance. The article will conclude with suggestions for future directions aimed at identifying the specific role of the RE in regulating functional interactions between the hippocampus and the PFC and investigating the degree to which these interactions contribute to spatial working memory.
Song, Wei; Zhang, Kai; Sun, Jinhua; Ma, Lina; Jesse, Forrest Fabian; Teng, Xiaochun; Zhou, Ying; Bao, Hechen; Chen, Shiqing; Wang, Shuai; Yang, Beimeng; Chu, Xixia; Ding, Wenhua; Du, Yasong; Cheng, Zaohuo; Wu, Bin; Chen, Shanguang; He, Guang; He, Lin; Chen, Xiaoping; Li, Weidong
People with neuropsychiatric disorders such as schizophrenia often display deficits in spatial working memory and attention. Evaluating working memory and attention in schizophrenia patients is usually based on traditional tasks and the interviewer's judgment. We developed a simple Spatial Working Memory and Attention Test on Paired Symbols (SWAPS). It takes only several minutes to complete, comprising 101 trials for each subject. In this study, we tested 72 schizophrenia patients and 188 healthy volunteers in China. In a healthy control group with ages ranging from 12 to 60, the efficiency score (accuracy divided by reaction time) reached a peak in the 20-27 age range and then declined with increasing age. Importantly, schizophrenia patients failed to display this developmental trend in the same age range and adults had significant deficits compared to the control group. Our data suggests that this simple Spatial Working Memory and Attention Test on Paired Symbols can be a useful tool for studies of spatial working memory and attention in neuropsychiatric disorders.
Full Text Available People with neuropsychiatric disorders such as schizophrenia often display deficits in spatial working memory and attention. Evaluating working memory and attention in schizophrenia patients is usually based on traditional tasks and the interviewer’s judgment. We developed a simple Spatial Working Memory and Attention Test on Paired Symbols (SWAPS. It takes only several minutes to complete, comprising 101 trials for each subject. In this study, we tested 72 schizophrenia patients and 188 healthy volunteers in China. In a healthy control group with ages ranging from 12 to 60, the efficiency score (accuracy divided by reaction time reached a peak in the 20–27 age range and then declined with increasing age. Importantly, schizophrenia patients failed to display this developmental trend in the same age range and adults had significant deficits compared to the control group. Our data suggests that this simple Spatial Working Memory and Attention Test on Paired Symbols can be a useful tool for studies of spatial working memory and attention in neuropsychiatric disorders.
Gong, Pingyuan; Zheng, Anyun; Chen, Dongmei; Ge, Wanhua; Lv, Changchao; Zhang, Kejin; Gao, Xiaocai; Zhang, Fuchang
Cognitive abilities are complex human traits influenced by genetic factors. Brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), a unique polypeptide growth factor, has an influence on the differentiation and survival of neurons in the nervous system. A single-nucleotide polymorphism (rs6265) in the human gene, resulting in a valine to methionine substitution in the pro-BDNF protein, was thought to associate with psychiatric disorders and might play roles in the individual difference of cognitive abilities. However, the specific roles of the gene in cognition remain unclear. To investigate the relationships between the substitution and cognitive abilities, a healthy population-based study and the PCR-SSCP method were performed. The results showed the substitution was associated with digital working memory (p = 0.02) and spatial localization (p = 0.03), but not with inhibition, shifting, updating, visuo-spatial working memory, long-term memory, and others (p > 0.05) among the compared genotype groups analyzed by general linear model. On the other hand, the participants with BDNF (GG) had higher average performance in digital working memory and spatial localization than the ones with BDNF (AA). The findings of the present work implied that the variation in BDNF might play positive roles in human digital working memory and spatial localization.
Yang, Yang; Mailman, Richard B
Strategic neuronal encoding in the medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC) of the rat was correlated with spatial working memory (sWM) assessed by behavior in the T-maze. Neurons increased their firing rate around choice, with the increase largely occurring before choice as a prospective encode of behavior. This could be classified as sensitive-to-spatial information or sensitive-to-choice outcome. The sensitivity-to-spatial choice was defined by distinct firing rate changes before left- or right-choice. The percentage of left-choice sensitive neurons was not different from the percentage of right-choice sensitive neurons. There was also location-related neuronal activity in which neurons fired at distinct rates when rats were in a left- or right-location. More neurons were sensitive to left-location, as most of them were recorded from rats preferring to enter the right-location. The sensitivity to outcome was defined by a distinct firing rate around correct or error choice. Significantly more neurons were sensitive to error outcome, and, among these, more preferred to encode prospectively, increasing firing in advance of an error outcome. Similar to single neuron activity, the mPFC enhanced its neuronal network as measured by the oscillation of local field potential. The maximum power of oscillation was around choice, and occurred slightly earlier before error versus before correct outcome. Thus, sWM modulation in the mPFC includes not only spatial, but also outcome-related inputs, and neuronal ensembles monitor behavioral outcome to make strategic adjustments ensuring successful task performance. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Olson, Mikel L; Ingebretson, Anna E; Harmelink, Katherine M
The mechanism by which the hippocampus facilitates declarative memory formation appears to involve, among other things, restructuring of the actin cytoskeleton within neuronal dendrites. One protein involved in this process is cortactin, which is an important link between extracellular signaling and cytoskeletal reorganization. In this paper, we demonstrate that total hippocampal cortactin, as well as Y421-phosphorylated cortactin are transiently reduced following spatial working memory formation in the radial arm maze (RAM). Because cortactin is a substrate of the cysteine protease calpain, we also assessed the effect of chronic calpain inhibition on RAM performance and cortactin expression. Calpain inhibition impaired spatial working memory and blocked the reduction in hippocampal cortactin levels following RAM training. These findings add to a growing body of research implicating cortactin and calpain in hippocampus-dependent memory formation.
Mikel L. Olson
Full Text Available The mechanism by which the hippocampus facilitates declarative memory formation appears to involve, among other things, restructuring of the actin cytoskeleton within neuronal dendrites. One protein involved in this process is cortactin, which is an important link between extracellular signaling and cytoskeletal reorganization. In this paper, we demonstrate that total hippocampal cortactin, as well as Y421-phosphorylated cortactin are transiently reduced following spatial working memory formation in the radial arm maze (RAM. Because cortactin is a substrate of the cysteine protease calpain, we also assessed the effect of chronic calpain inhibition on RAM performance and cortactin expression. Calpain inhibition impaired spatial working memory and blocked the reduction in hippocampal cortactin levels following RAM training. These findings add to a growing body of research implicating cortactin and calpain in hippocampus-dependent memory formation.
Kessels, R.P.C.; Meulenbroek, O.V.; Fernandez, G.S.E.; Olde Rikkert, M.G.M.
Mild Cognitive Impairment (MCI) is characterized by episodic memory deficits, while aspects of working memory may also be implicated, but studies into this latter domain are scarce and results are inconclusive. Using a computerized search paradigm, this study compares 25 young adults, 25 typically
Kessels, R.P.C.; Meulenbroek, O.V.; Fernandez, G.S.E.; Olde Rikkert, M.G.M.
Mild Cognitive Impairment (MCI) is characterized by episodic memory deficits, while aspects of working memory may also be implicated, but studies into this latter domain are scarce and results are inconclusive. Using a computerized search paradigm, this study compares 25 young adults, 25 typically
Abu-Akel, A; Reniers, R L E P; Wood, S J
Patients with schizophrenia show impairments in working-memory and visual-spatial processing, but little is known about the dynamic interplay between the two. To provide insight into this important question, we examined the effect of positive and negative symptom expressions in healthy adults on perceptual processing while concurrently performing a working-memory task that requires the allocations of various degrees of cognitive resources. The effect of positive and negative symptom expressions in healthy adults (N = 91) on perceptual processing was examined in a dual-task paradigm of visual-spatial working memory (VSWM) under three conditions of cognitive load: a baseline condition (with no concurrent working-memory demand), a low VSWM load condition, and a high VSWM load condition. Participants overall performed more efficiently (i.e., faster) with increasing cognitive load. This facilitation in performance was unrelated to symptom expressions. However, participants with high-negative, low-positive symptom expressions were less accurate in the low VSWM condition compared to the baseline and the high VSWM load conditions. Attenuated, subclinical expressions of psychosis affect cognitive performance that is impaired in schizophrenia. The "resource limitations hypothesis" may explain the performance of the participants with high-negative symptom expressions. The dual-task of visual-spatial processing and working memory may be beneficial to assessing the cognitive phenotype of individuals with high risk for schizophrenia spectrum disorders.
Full Text Available A Partial Replication of “Functional Equivalence of Verbal and Spatial Information in Serial Short-Term Memory (Jones, Farrand, Stuart, & Morris, 1995; Experiment 4” The irrelevant speech effect (ISE—the phenomenon that background speech impairs serial recall of visually presented material—has been widely used for examining the structure of short-term memory. In Experiment 4, Jones, Farrand, Stuart, and Morris (1995 employed the ISE to demonstrate that impairment of performance is determined by the changing-state characteristics of the material, rather than its modality of origin. The present study directly replicated the spatial condition of Experiment 4 with 'N' = 40 German participants. In contrast to the original findings, no main effect of sound type was observed, 'F'(2, 78 = 0.81, 'p' = .450, η2'p' = .02. The absence of an ISE in the spatial domain does not support the changing state hypothesis.
Sarah L. Levin
Full Text Available Sex differences in spatial cognition are well documented; males typically outperform females on tasks dealing with mental rotation and spatial navigation, while females tend to outperform males on tasks dealing with object location, relational object location memory, or spatial working memory. Here we investigated both behavioral and neural sex differences in sex-specific spatial abilities. In Experiment 1, sixty-six (30 males, 36 females participants completed computerized mental rotation (MR and spatial working memory (SWM tasks. In Experiment 2, twelve (6 males, 6 females participants were given slightly modified versions of the same tasks during functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI. In both experiments, males outperformed females on the MR task, but no behavioral sex difference was observed on the SWM task. Males showed more activation in left parahippocampal gyrus, right medial frontal gyrus, inferior parietal lobe, inferior frontal gyrus in the MR task. Females showed activation in the left parahippocampal gyrus only. For the study condition of the spatial working memory task, females showed activation in left inferior frontal gyrus, while males activated left inferior parietal and medial frontal areas. In the test conditions, females showed activation in the right inferior frontal gyrus, left middle temporal gyrus, and left parahippocampal gyrus. Males activated right medial frontal gyrus and inferior parietal lobe. Interestingly, similar regions – parahippocampal gyrus, inferior parietal lobe, and middle temporal gyrus - were found to be active when males solved mental rotation tasks and females solved spatial working memory tasks. Further, performance was modulated by activation in the parahippocampal gyrus and middle temporal gyrus for males and the middle temporal gyrus and inferior frontal gyrus for females. These data extend previous claims for sex differences in sex specific spatial cognitive abilities by demonstrating
Passolunghi, Maria Chiara; Mammarella, Irene Cristina
This study examines visual and spatial working memory skills in 35 third to fifth graders with both mathematics learning disabilities (MLD) and poor problem-solving skills and 35 of their peers with typical development (TD) on tasks involving both low and high attentional control. Results revealed that children with MLD, relative to TD children,…
O'Hanlon, Erik; Howley, Sarah; Prasad, Sarah; McGrath, Jane; Leemans, Alexander; McDonald, Colm; Garavan, Hugh; Murphy, Kieran C
INTRODUCTION: Impaired spatial working memory is a core cognitive deficit observed in people with 22q11 Deletion syndrome (22q11DS) and has been suggested as a candidate endophenotype for schizophrenia. However, to date, the neuroanatomical mechanisms describing its structural and functional
Pearson-Leary, J; Jahagirdar, V; Sage, J; McNay, E C
The insulin-regulated glucose transporter, GluT4, is a key molecule in peripheral insulin signaling. Although GluT4 is abundantly expressed in neurons of specific brain regions such as the hippocampus, the functional role of neuronal GluT4 is unclear. Here, we used pharmacological inhibition of GluT4-mediated glucose uptake to determine whether GluT4 mediates insulin-mediated glucose uptake in the hippocampus. Consistent with previous reports, we found that glucose utilization increased in the dorsal hippocampus of male rats during spontaneous alternation (SA), a hippocampally-mediated spatial working memory task. We previously showed that insulin signaling within the hippocampus is required for processing this task, and that administration of exogenous insulin enhances performance. At baseline levels of hippocampal insulin, inhibition of GluT4-mediated glucose uptake did not affect SA performance. However, inhibition of an upstream regulator of GluT4, Akt, did impair SA performance. Conversely, when a memory-enhancing dose of insulin was delivered to the hippocampus prior to SA-testing, inhibition of GluT4-mediated glucose transport prevented cognitive enhancement. These data suggest that baseline hippocampal cognitive processing does not require functional hippocampal GluT4, but that cognitive enhancement by supra-baseline insulin does. Consistent with these findings, we found that in neuronal cell culture, insulin increases glucose utilization in a GluT4-dependent manner. Collectively, these data demonstrate a key role for GluT4 in transducing the procognitive effects of elevated hippocampal insulin. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Full Text Available Serotonin (5-HT receptors of types 1A and 2A are massively expressed in prefrontal cortex (PFC neurons, an area associated with cognitive function. Hence, 5-HT could be effective in modulating prefrontal-dependent cognitive functions, such as spatial working memory (SWM. However, a direct association between 5-HT and SWM has proved elusive in psycho-pharmacological studies. Recently, a computational network model of the PFC microcircuit was used to explore the relationship between 5‑HT and SWM (Cano-Colino et al. 2013. This study found that both excessive and insufficient 5-HT levels lead to impaired SWM performance in the network, and it concluded that analyzing behavioral responses based on confidence reports could facilitate the experimental identification of SWM behavioral effects of 5‑HT neuromodulation. Such analyses may have confounds based on our limited understanding of metacognitive processes. Here, we extend these results by deriving three additional predictions from the model that do not rely on confidence reports. Firstly, only excessive levels of 5-HT should result in SWM deficits that increase with delay duration. Secondly, excessive 5-HT baseline concentration makes the network vulnerable to distractors at distances that were robust to distraction in control conditions, while the network still ignores distractors efficiently for low 5‑HT levels that impair SWM. Finally, 5-HT modulates neuronal memory fields in neurophysiological experiments: Neurons should be better tuned to the cued stimulus than to the behavioral report for excessive 5-HT levels, while the reverse should happen for low 5-HT concentrations. In all our simulations agonists of 5-HT1A receptors and antagonists of 5-HT2A receptors produced behavioral and physiological effects in line with global 5-HT level increases. Our model makes specific predictions to be tested experimentally and advance our understanding of the neural basis of SWM and its neuromodulation
Close, Alex; Sapir, Ayelet; Burnett, Katherine; d'Avossa, Giovanni
What limits the ability to attend several locations simultaneously? There are two possibilities: Either attention cannot be divided without incurring a cost, or spatial memory is limited and observers forget which locations to monitor. We compared motion discrimination when attention was directed to one or multiple locations by briefly presented central cues. The cues were matched for the amount of spatial information they provided. Several random dot kinematograms (RDKs) followed the spatial cues; one of them contained task-relevant, coherent motion. When four RDKs were presented, discrimination accuracy was identical when one and two locations were indicated by equally informative cues. However, when six RDKs were presented, discrimination accuracy was higher following one rather than multiple location cues. We examined whether memory of the cued locations was diminished under these conditions. Recall of the cued locations was tested when participants attended the cued locations and when they did not attend the cued locations. Recall was inaccurate only when the cued locations were attended. Finally, visually marking the cued locations, following one and multiple location cues, equalized discrimination performance, suggesting that participants could attend multiple locations when they did not have to remember which ones to attend. We conclude that endogenously dividing attention between multiple locations is limited by inaccurate recall of the attended locations and that attention poses separate demands on the same central processes used to remember spatial information, even when the locations attended and those held in memory are the same. © 2014 ARVO.
Caterino, Linda C; Verdi, Michael P
OJECTIVE: The Kulhavy model for text learning using organized spatial displays proposes that learning will be increased when participants view visual images prior to related text. In contrast to previous studies, this study also included students who exhibited symptoms of ADHD. Participants were presented with either a map-text or text-map condition. The map-text condition led to a significantly higher performance than the text-map condition, overall. However, students who endorsed more symptoms of inattention and hyperactivity-impulsivity scored more poorly when asked to recall text facts, text features, and map features and were less able to correctly place map features on a reconstructed map than were students who endorsed fewer symptoms. The results of the study support the Kulhavy model for typical students; however, the benefit of viewing a display prior to text was not seen for students with ADHD symptoms, thus supporting previous studies that have demonstrated that ADHD appears to negatively affect operations that occur in working memory.
Kaufman, Miron; Allen, P.
We develop and test a thermodynamic model of spatial memory. Our model is an application of statistical thermodynamics to cognitive science. It is related to applications of the statistical mechanics framework in parallel distributed processes research. Our macroscopic model allows us to evaluate an entropy associated with spatial memory tasks. We find that older adults exhibit higher levels of entropy than younger adults. Thurstone's Law of Categorical Judgment, according to which the discriminal processes along the psychological continuum produced by presentations of a single stimulus are normally distributed, is explained by using a Hooke spring model of spatial memory. We have also analyzed a nonlinear modification of the ideal spring model of spatial memory. This work is supported by NIH/NIA grant AG09282-06.
Meneghetti, Chiara; Labate, Enia; Pazzaglia, Francesca; Hamilton, Colin; Gyselinck, Valérie
This study examines the involvement of spatial and visual working memory (WM) in the construction of flexible spatial models derived from survey and route descriptions. Sixty young adults listened to environment descriptions, 30 from a survey perspective and the other 30 from a route perspective, while they performed spatial (spatial tapping [ST]) and visual (dynamic visual noise [DVN]) secondary tasks - believed to overload the spatial and visual working memory (WM) components, respectively - or no secondary task (control, C). Their mental representations of the environment were tested by free recall and a verification test with both route and survey statements. Results showed that, for both recall tasks, accuracy was worse in the ST than in the C or DVN conditions. In the verification test, the effect of both ST and DVN was a decreasing accuracy for sentences testing spatial relations from the opposite perspective to the one learnt than if the perspective was the same; only ST had a stronger interference effect than the C condition for sentences from the opposite perspective from the one learnt. Overall, these findings indicate that both visual and spatial WM, and especially the latter, are involved in the construction of perspective-flexible spatial models. © 2016 The British Psychological Society.
Cánovas, Ma Rosa; Cimadevilla, José Manuel
The present study aimed at determining the influence of sexual orientation in human spatial learning and memory. Participants performed the Boxes Room, a virtual reality version of the Holeboard. In Experiment I, a reference memory task, the position of the hidden rewards remained constant during the whole experiment. In Experiment II, a working memory task, the position of rewards changed between blocks. Each block consisted of two trials: One trial for acquisition and another for retrieval. The results of Experiment I showed that heterosexual men performed better than homosexual men and heterosexual women. They found the rewarded boxes faster. Moreover, homosexual participants committed more errors than heterosexuals. Experiment II showed that working memory abilities are the same in groups of different sexual orientation. These results suggest that sexual orientation is related to spatial navigation abilities, but mostly in men, and limited to reference memory, which depends more on the function of the hippocampal system.
Satler, Corina; Belham, Flávia Schechtman; Garcia, Ana; Tomaz, Carlos; Tavares, Maria Clotilde H
A new tablet device version (IOS platform) of the Spatial Delayed Recognition Span Task (SDRST) was developed with the aim of investigating visuospatial Working Memory (WM) abilities based on touchscreen technology. This new WM testing application will be available to download for free in Apple Store app ("SDRST app"). In order to verify the feasibility of this computer-based task, we conducted three experiments with different manipulations and groups of participants. We were interested in investigating if (1) the SDRST is sensitive enough to tap into cognitive differences brought by aging and dementia; (2) different experimental manipulations work successfully; (3) cortical brain activations seen in other WM tasks are also demonstrated here; and (4) non-human primates are able to answer the task. Performance (scores and response time) was better for young than older adults and higher for the latter when compared to Alzheimer's disease (AD) patients. All groups performed better with facial stimuli than with images of scenes and with emotional than with neutral stimuli. Electrophysiology data showed activation on prefrontal and frontal areas of scalp, theta band activity on the midline area, and gamma activity in left temporal area. There are all scalp regions known to be related to attention and WM. Besides those data, our sample of adult captive capuchin monkeys (Sapajus libidinosus) answered the task above chance level. Taken together, these results corroborate the reliability of this new computer-based SDRST as a measure of visuospatial WM in clinical and non-clinical populations as well as in non-human primates. Its tablet app allows the task to be administered in a wide range of settings, including hospitals, homes, schools, laboratories, universities, and research institutions.
Full Text Available A new tablet device version (IOS platform of the Spatial Delayed Recognition Span Task (SDRST was developed with the aim of investigating visuospatial Working Memory (WM abilities based on touchscreen technology. This new WM testing application will be available to download for free in Apple Store app (SDRST app. In order to verify the feasibility of this computer-based task, we conducted three experiments with different manipulations and groups of participants. We were interested in investigating if (1 the SDRST is sensitive enough to tap into cognitive differences brought by ageing and dementia; (2 different experimental manipulations work successfully; (3 cortical brain activations seen in other WM tasks are also demonstrated here; and (4 non-human primates are able to answer the task. Performance (scores and response time was better for young than older adults and higher for the latter when compared to Alzheimer’s disease patients. All groups performed better with facial stimuli than with images of scenes and with emotional than with neutral stimuli. Electrophysiology data showed activation on prefrontal and frontal areas of scalp, theta band activity on the midline area, and gamma activity in left temporal area. There are all scalp regions known to be related to attention and WM. Besides those data, our sample of adult captive capuchin monkeys (Sapajus libidinosus answered the task above chance level. Taken together, these results corroborate the reliability of this new computer-based SDRST as a measure of visuospatial WM in clinical and non-clinical populations as well as in non-human primates. Its tablet app allows the task to be administered in a wide range of settings, including hospitals, homes, schools, laboratories, universities, and research institutions.
Simione, Luca; Raffone, Antonino; Wolters, Gezinus; Salmas, Paola; Nakatani, Chie; Belardinelli, Marta Olivetti; van Leeuwen, Cees
Two separate lines of study have clarified the role of selectivity in conscious access to visual information. Both involve presenting multiple targets and distracters: one simultaneously in a spatially distributed fashion, the other sequentially at a single location. To understand their findings in a unified framework, we propose a neurodynamic model for Visual Selection and Awareness (ViSA). ViSA supports the view that neural representations for conscious access and visuo-spatial working memory are globally distributed and are based on recurrent interactions between perceptual and access control processors. Its flexible global workspace mechanisms enable a unitary account of a broad range of effects: It accounts for the limited storage capacity of visuo-spatial working memory, attentional cueing, and efficient selection with multi-object displays, as well as for the attentional blink and associated sparing and masking effects. In particular, the speed of consolidation for storage in visuo-spatial working memory in ViSA is not fixed but depends adaptively on the input and recurrent signaling. Slowing down of consolidation due to weak bottom-up and recurrent input as a result of brief presentation and masking leads to the attentional blink. Thus, ViSA goes beyond earlier 2-stage and neuronal global workspace accounts of conscious processing limitations. PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved.
Michael J Boivin
Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Using the Kaufman Assessment Battery for Children (K-ABC Conant et al. (1999 observed that visual and auditory working memory (WM span were independent in both younger and older children from DR Congo, but related in older American children and in Lao children. The present study evaluated whether visual and auditory WM span were independent in Ugandan and Senegalese children. METHOD: In a linear regression analysis we used visual (Spatial Memory, Hand Movements and auditory (Number Recall WM along with education and physical development (weight/height as predictors. The predicted variable in this analysis was Word Order, which is a verbal memory task that has both visual and auditory memory components. RESULTS: Both the younger (8.5 yrs Ugandan children had auditory memory span (Number Recall that was strongly predictive of Word Order performance. For both the younger and older groups of Senegalese children, only visual WM span (Spatial Memory was strongly predictive of Word Order. Number Recall was not significantly predictive of Word Order in either age group. CONCLUSIONS: It is possible that greater literacy from more schooling for the Ugandan age groups mediated their greater degree of interdependence between auditory and verbal WM. Our findings support those of Conant et al., who observed in their cross-cultural comparisons that stronger education seemed to enhance the dominance of the phonological-auditory processing loop for WM.
Boivin, Michael J; Bangirana, Paul; Shaffer, Rebecca C; Smith, Rebecca C
Using the Kaufman Assessment Battery for Children (K-ABC) Conant et al. (1999) observed that visual and auditory working memory (WM) span were independent in both younger and older children from DR Congo, but related in older American children and in Lao children. The present study evaluated whether visual and auditory WM span were independent in Ugandan and Senegalese children. In a linear regression analysis we used visual (Spatial Memory, Hand Movements) and auditory (Number Recall) WM along with education and physical development (weight/height) as predictors. The predicted variable in this analysis was Word Order, which is a verbal memory task that has both visual and auditory memory components. Both the younger (8.5 yrs) Ugandan children had auditory memory span (Number Recall) that was strongly predictive of Word Order performance. For both the younger and older groups of Senegalese children, only visual WM span (Spatial Memory) was strongly predictive of Word Order. Number Recall was not significantly predictive of Word Order in either age group. It is possible that greater literacy from more schooling for the Ugandan age groups mediated their greater degree of interdependence between auditory and verbal WM. Our findings support those of Conant et al., who observed in their cross-cultural comparisons that stronger education seemed to enhance the dominance of the phonological-auditory processing loop for WM.
Full Text Available Abstract Background Using a rat model we have found that the bioflavonoid silymarin (SY ameliorates some of the negative consequences of in utero exposure to ethanol (EtOH. In the current study our aim was to determine if spatial working memory (SWM was impaired in offspring whose mothers were maintained on a liquid diet containing EtOH during different gestational weeks. We also determined if SWM was altered with a concomitant administration of SY with EtOH during specific gestational weeks. Methods We provided pregnant Fischer/344 rats with liquid diets containing 35% EtOH derived calories (EDC during specific weeks of the gestational period. A silymarin/phospholipid compound containing 29.8% silybin co-administered with EtOH was also administered during specific weeks of the gestational period. We tested SWM of the offspring with a radial arm maze on postnatal day (PND 60. After testing the rats were sacrificed and their brains perfused for later analysis. Results We observed SWM deficits, as well as a significantly lower brain weight in female offspring born of mothers treated with EtOH during the third week of gestation in comparison to mothers treated during either the first or second weeks of gestation. Rats from any group receiving EtOH in co-administration with SY showed no significant deficits in SWM. Conclusion EtOH treatment during the last week of gestation had the greatest impact on SWM. The addition of SY to the EtOH liquid diet appeared to ameliorate the EtOH-induced learning deficits.
Martin, Eileen; Keutmann, M K; Fogel, J S; Maki, P M; Gonzalez, R; Vassileva, J; Rubin, L H; Hardy, D
Working memory (WM) is a critical component of many neurocognitive functions. The literature has demonstrated consistently that WM impairment is more frequent and severe among substance-dependent individuals (SDIs) infected with HIV compared with uninfected SDIs; however, the SDIs who participated in these previous studies were primarily male. There are few published data on WM performance among HIV+ women with or without substance use disorders, and essentially no direct comparisons of WM performance between HIV+ men and women, regardless of substance use. We investigated potential sex and serostatus effects on WM among a sample of 360 SDIs (114 with HIV; 66% female) verified abstinent from alcohol and drugs of abuse at testing and generally comparable on substance use and comorbid characteristics. Participants were tested with the n-back task, a well-established WM measure that is sensitive to HIV-associated cognitive impairment. HIV+ men and women performed spatial and verbal versions of the n-back significantly less accurately compared with HIV- participants. Women showed slower response times compared with men on both versions, regardless of HIV serostatus. Individuals dependent on cocaine showed faster RTs compared with non-dependent users, but this effect was not apparent among opioid- or alcohol-dependent groups. Findings on n-back accuracy are consistent with our previous proposal that WM impairment represents a signature deficit among HIV+ SDIs; however, WM impairment appears less common among HIV+ women without a substance use history. The pattern of sex differences in response speed but serostatus effects on response accuracy is comparable to a recent report by our group of sex differences in learning speed but serostatus effects on delayed recall.
Working-memory theories often include domain-specific verbal and visual stores (e.g., the phonological and visuospatial buffers of Baddeley, 1986), and some also posit more general stores thought to be capable of holding verbal or visuospatial materials (Baddeley, 2000; Cowan, 2005). However, it is
Swanson, H. Lee
This study investigates whether age-related changes in the structure of 5 complex working memory (WM) tasks (a) reflect a general or domain specific system, (b) follows a similar trajectory across different age spans, and (c) contribute domain general or domain specific resources to achievement measures. The study parsed the sample (N = 2,471)…
Brady, Timothy F.; Alvarez, George A.
A central question for models of visual working memory is whether the number of objects people can remember depends on object complexity. Some influential "slot" models of working memory capacity suggest that people always represent 3-4 objects and that only the fidelity with which these objects are represented is affected by object…
Stollery, Brian; Christian, Leonie
There is evidence that glucose temporarily enhances cognition and that processes dependent on the hippocampus may be particularly sensitive. As the hippocampus plays a key role in binding processes, we examined the influence of glucose on memory for object-location bindings. This study aims to study how glucose modifies performance on an object-location memory task, a task that draws heavily on hippocampal function. Thirty-one participants received 30 g glucose or placebo in a single 1-h session. After seeing between 3 and 10 objects (words or shapes) at different locations in a 9 × 9 matrix, participants attempted to immediately reproduce the display on a blank 9 × 9 matrix. Blood glucose was measured before drink ingestion, mid-way through the session, and at the end of the session. Glucose significantly improves object-location binding (d = 1.08) and location memory (d = 0.83), but not object memory (d = 0.51). Increasing working memory load impairs object memory and object-location binding, and word-location binding is more successful than shape-location binding, but the glucose improvement is robust across all difficulty manipulations. Within the glucose group, higher levels of circulating glucose are correlated with better binding memory and remembering the locations of successfully recalled objects. The glucose improvements identified are consistent with a facilitative impact on hippocampal function. The findings are discussed in the context of the relationship between cognitive processes, hippocampal function, and the implications for glucose's mode of action.
Mika, Agnieszka; Mazur, Gabriel J.; Hoffman, Ann N.; Talboom, Joshua S.; Bimonte-Nelson, Heather A.; Sanabria, Federico; Conrad, Cheryl D.
Chronic stress leads to neurochemical and structural alterations in the prefrontal cortex (PFC) that correspond to deficits in PFC-mediated behaviors. The present study examined the effects of chronic restraint stress on response inhibition (using a response-withholding task, fixed-minimum interval schedule of reinforcement, or FMI), and working memory (using a radial arm water maze, RAWM). Adult male Sprague Dawley rats were first trained on the RAWM and subsequently trained on FMI. Following acquisition of FMI, rats were assigned to a restraint stress (6h/d/28d in wire mesh restrainers) or control condition. Immediately after chronic stress, rats were tested on FMI and subsequently on RAWM. FMI results suggest that chronic stress reduces response inhibition capacity and motivation to initiate the task on selective conditions when food reward was not obtained on the preceding trial. RAWM results suggest that chronic stress produces transient deficits in working memory without altering previously consolidated reference memory. Behavioral measures from FMI failed to correlate with metrics from RAWM except for one in which changes in FMI timing precision negatively correlated with changes in RAWM working memory errors for the controls, a finding that was not observed following chronic stress. Fisher’s r to z transformation revealed no significant differences between control and stress with correlation coefficients. These findings are the first to show that chronic stress impairs both response inhibition and working memory, two behaviors that have never been direct compared within the same animals following chronic stress, using FMI, an appetitive task, and RAWM, a non-appetitive task. PMID:22905921
Shiels, Keri; Hawk, Larry W; Lysczek, Cynthia L; Tannock, Rosemary; Pelham, William E; Spencer, Sarah V; Gangloff, Brian P; Waschbusch, Daniel A
Working memory is one of several putative core neurocognitive processes in attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). The present work seeks to determine whether visual-spatial working memory is sensitive to motivational incentives, a laboratory analogue of behavioral treatment. Participants were 21 children (ages 7-10) with a diagnosis of ADHD-combined type. Participants completed a computerized spatial span task designed to assess storage of visual-spatial information (forward span) and manipulation of the stored information (backward span). The spatial span task was completed twice on the same day, once with a performance-based incentive (trial-wise feedback and points redeemable for prizes) and once without incentives. Participants performed significantly better on the backward span when rewarded for correct responses, compared to the no incentive condition. However, incentives had no effect on performance during the forward span. These findings may suggest the use of motivational incentives improved manipulation, but not storage, of visual-spatial information among children with ADHD. Possible explanations for the differential incentive effects are discussed, including the possibility that incentives prevented a vigilance decrement as task difficulty and time on task increased.
Piccardi, Laura; Matano, Alessandro; D’Antuono, Giovanni; Marin, Dario; Ciurli, Paola; Incoccia, Chiara; Verde, Paola; Guariglia, Paola
The aim of the present study was to verify if gender differences in verbal and visuo-spatial working memory would persist following right cerebral lesions. To pursue our aim we investigated a large sample (n. 346) of right brain-damaged patients and healthy participants (n. 272) for the presence of gender effects in performing Corsi and Digit Test. We also assessed a subgroup of patients (n. 109) for the nature (active vs. passive) of working memory tasks. We tested working memory (WM) administering the Corsi Test (CBT) and the Digit Span (DS) using two different versions: forward (fCBT and fDS), subjects were required to repeat stimuli in the same order that they were presented; and backward (bCBT and bDS), subjects were required to repeat stimuli in the opposite order of presentation. In this way, passive storage and active processing of working memory were assessed. Our results showed the persistence of gender-related effects in spite of the presence of right brain lesions. We found that men outperformed women both in CBT and DS, regardless of active and passive processing of verbal and visuo-spatial stimuli. The presence of visuo-spatial disorders (i.e., hemineglect) can affect the performance on Corsi Test. In our sample, men and women were equally affected by hemineglect, therefore it did not mask the gender effect. Generally speaking, the persistence of the men’s superiority in visuo-spatial tasks may be interpreted as a protective factor, at least for men, within other life factors such as level of education or kind of profession before retirement. PMID:27445734
Kathryn L. Mills
Full Text Available Introduction: Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD captures a heterogeneous group of children, who are characterized by a range of cognitive and behavioral symptoms. Previous resting state functional connectivity (rs-fcMRI studies have sought to understand the neural correlates of ADHD by comparing connectivity measurements between those with and without the disorder, focusing primarily on cortical-striatal circuits mediated by the thalamus. To integrate the multiple phenotypic features associated with ADHD and help resolve its heterogeneity, it is helpful to determine how specific circuits relate to unique cognitive domains of the ADHD syndrome. Spatial working memory has been proposed as a key mechanism in the pathophysiology of ADHD.Methods: We correlated the rs-fcMRI of five thalamic regions of interest with spatial span working memory scores in a sample of 67 children aged 7-11 years (ADHD and typically developing children; TDC. In an independent dataset, we then examined group differences in thalamo-striatal functional connectivity between 70 ADHD and 89 TDC (7-11 years from the ADHD-200 dataset. Thalamic regions of interest were created based on previous methods that utilize known thalamo-cortical loops and rs-fcMRI to identify functional boundaries in the thalamus.Results/Conclusions: Using these thalamic regions, we found atypical rs-fcMRI between specific thalamic groupings with the basal ganglia. To identify the thalamic connections that relate to spatial working memory in ADHD, only connections identified in both the correlational and comparative analyses were considered. Multiple connections between the thalamus and basal ganglia, particularly between medial and anterior dorsal thalamus and the putamen, were related to spatial working memory and also altered in ADHD. These thalamo-striatal disruptions may be one of multiple atypical neural and cognitive mechanisms that relate to the ADHD clinical phenotype.
Piccardi, Laura; Matano, Alessandro; D'Antuono, Giovanni; Marin, Dario; Ciurli, Paola; Incoccia, Chiara; Verde, Paola; Guariglia, Paola
The aim of the present study was to verify if gender differences in verbal and visuo-spatial working memory would persist following right cerebral lesions. To pursue our aim we investigated a large sample (n. 346) of right brain-damaged patients and healthy participants (n. 272) for the presence of gender effects in performing Corsi and Digit Test. We also assessed a subgroup of patients (n. 109) for the nature (active vs. passive) of working memory tasks. We tested working memory (WM) administering the Corsi Test (CBT) and the Digit Span (DS) using two different versions: forward (fCBT and fDS), subjects were required to repeat stimuli in the same order that they were presented; and backward (bCBT and bDS), subjects were required to repeat stimuli in the opposite order of presentation. In this way, passive storage and active processing of working memory were assessed. Our results showed the persistence of gender-related effects in spite of the presence of right brain lesions. We found that men outperformed women both in CBT and DS, regardless of active and passive processing of verbal and visuo-spatial stimuli. The presence of visuo-spatial disorders (i.e., hemineglect) can affect the performance on Corsi Test. In our sample, men and women were equally affected by hemineglect, therefore it did not mask the gender effect. Generally speaking, the persistence of the men's superiority in visuo-spatial tasks may be interpreted as a protective factor, at least for men, within other life factors such as level of education or kind of profession before retirement.
Lehnert, Günther; Zimmer, Hubert D
We compared spatial short-term memory for visual and auditory stimuli in an event-related slow potentials study. Subjects encoded object locations of either four or six sequentially presented auditory or visual stimuli and maintained them during a retention period of 6 s. Slow potentials recorded during encoding were modulated by the modality of the stimuli. Stimulus related activity was stronger for auditory items at frontal and for visual items at posterior sites. At frontal electrodes, negative potentials incrementally increased with the sequential presentation of visual items, whereas a strong transient component occurred during encoding of each auditory item without the cumulative increment. During maintenance, frontal slow potentials were affected by modality and memory load according to task difficulty. In contrast, at posterior recording sites, slow potential activity was only modulated by memory load independent of modality. We interpret the frontal effects as correlates of different encoding strategies and the posterior effects as a correlate of common coding of visual and auditory object locations.
Allred, Sarah R; Crawford, L Elizabeth; Duffy, Sean; Smith, John
Previous work demonstrates that memory for simple stimuli can be biased by information about the distribution of which the stimulus is a member. Specifically, people underestimate values greater than the distribution's average and overestimate values smaller than the average. This is referred to as the central tendency bias. This bias has been explained as an optimal use of both noisy sensory information and category information. In largely separate literature, cognitive load (CL) experiments attempt to manipulate the available working memory of participants in order to observe the effect on choice or judgments. In two experiments, we demonstrate that participants under high cognitive load exhibit a stronger central tendency bias than when under a low cognitive load. Although not anticipated at the outset, we also find that judgments exhibit an anchoring bias not described previously.
Qi, Xue-Lian; Meyer, Travis; Stanford, Terrence R; Constantinidis, Christos
The prefrontal cortex is considered essential for learning to perform cognitive tasks though little is known about how the representation of stimulus properties is altered by learning. To address this issue, we recorded neuronal activity in monkeys before and after training on a task that required visual working memory. After the subjects learned to perform the task, we observed activation of more prefrontal neurons and increased activity during working memory maintenance. The working memory-related increase in firing rate was due mostly to regular-spiking putative pyramidal neurons. Unexpectedly, the selectivity of neurons for stimulus properties and the ability of neurons to discriminate between stimuli decreased as the information about stimulus properties was apparently present in neural firing prior to training and neuronal selectivity degraded after training in the task. The effect was robust and could not be accounted for by differences in sampling sites, selection of neurons, level of performance, or merely the elapse of time. The results indicate that, in contrast to the effects of perceptual learning, mastery of a cognitive task degrades the apparent stimulus selectivity as neurons represent more abstract information related to the task. This effect is countered by the recruitment of more neurons after training.
Saliasi, Emi; Geerligs, Linda; Lorist, Monicque M.; Maurits, Natasha M.
To investigate which neural correlates are associated with successful working memory performance, fMRI was recorded in healthy younger and older adults during performance on an n-back task with varying task demands. To identify functional networks supporting working memory processes, we used independent component analysis (ICA) decomposition of the fMRI data. Compared to younger adults, older adults showed a larger neural (BOLD) response in the more complex (2-back) than in the baseline (0-back) task condition, in the ventral lateral prefrontal cortex (VLPFC) and in the right fronto-parietal network (FPN). Our results indicated that a higher BOLD response in the VLPFC was associated with increased performance accuracy in older adults, in both the baseline and the more complex task condition. This ‘BOLD-performance’ relationship suggests that the neural correlates linked with successful performance in the older adults are not uniquely related to specific working memory processes present in the complex but not in the baseline task condition. Furthermore, the selective presence of this relationship in older but not in younger adults suggests that increased neural activity in the VLPFC serves a compensatory role in the aging brain which benefits task performance in the elderly. PMID:24911016
Bratch, Alexander; Kann, Spencer; Cain, Joshua A; Wu, Jie-En; Rivera-Reyes, Nilda; Dalecki, Stefan; Arman, Diana; Dunn, Austin; Cooper, Shiloh; Corbin, Hannah E; Doyle, Amanda R; Pizzo, Matthew J; Smith, Alexandra E; Crystal, Jonathon D
A fundamental feature of memory in humans is the ability to simultaneously work with multiple types of information using independent memory systems. Working memory is conceptualized as two independent memory systems under executive control [1, 2]. Although there is a long history of using the term "working memory" to describe short-term memory in animals, it is not known whether multiple, independent memory systems exist in nonhumans. Here, we used two established short-term memory approaches to test the hypothesis that spatial and olfactory memory operate as independent working memory resources in the rat. In the olfactory memory task, rats chose a novel odor from a gradually incrementing set of old odors . In the spatial memory task, rats searched for a depleting food source at multiple locations . We presented rats with information to hold in memory in one domain (e.g., olfactory) while adding a memory load in the other domain (e.g., spatial). Control conditions equated the retention interval delay without adding a second memory load. In a further experiment, we used proactive interference [5-7] in the spatial domain to compromise spatial memory and evaluated the impact of adding an olfactory memory load. Olfactory and spatial memory are resistant to interference from the addition of a memory load in the other domain. Our data suggest that olfactory and spatial memory draw on independent working memory systems in the rat. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Zimmer, Hubert D.; Münzer, Stefan; Umla-Runge, Katja
Working memory is considered a cognitive component that mainly serves two functions. It temporarily maintains information that was either perceived but is no longer present in the environment, or that was internally generated, and it supplies a work space for transforming and manipulating elements of perception and thinking. Both functions are relevant for a successful interaction with the environment and it is therefore not surprising that WM is a central topic of research in the field of general psychology. This interest is further increased by the fact that WM is seen as a limited resource that constrains cognitive performances.
Cardoso-Cruz, Helder; Sousa, Mafalda; Vieira, Joana B; Lima, Deolinda; Galhardo, Vasco
The medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC) and the mediodorsal thalamus (MD) form interconnected neural circuits that are important for spatial cognition and memory, but it is not known whether the functional connectivity between these areas is affected by the onset of an animal model of inflammatory pain. To address this issue, we implanted 2 multichannel arrays of electrodes in the mPFC and MD of adult rats and recorded local field potential activity during a food-reinforced spatial working memory task. Recordings were performed for 3weeks, before and after the establishment of the pain model. Our results show that inflammatory pain caused an impairment of spatial working memory performance that is associated with changes in the activity of the mPFC-MD circuit; an analysis of partial directed coherence between the areas revealed a global decrease in the connectivity of the circuit. This decrease was observed over a wide frequency range in both the frontothalamic and thalamofrontal directions of the circuit, but was more evident from MD to mPFC. In addition, spectral analysis revealed significant oscillations of power across frequency bands, namely with a strong theta component that oscillated after the onset of the painful condition. Finally, our data revealed that chronic pain induces an increase in theta/gamma phase coherence and a higher level of mPFC-MD coherence, which is partially conserved across frequency bands. The present results demonstrate that functional disturbances in mPFC-MD connectivity are a relevant cause of deficits in pain-related working memory. Copyright © 2013 International Association for the Study of Pain. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Rasha Refaat Mahmmoud
Full Text Available Changes in synaptic structure and efficacy including dendritic spine number and morphology have been shown to underlie neuronal activity and size. Moreover, the shapes of individual dendritic spines were proposed to correlate with their capacity for structural change. Spine numbers and morphology were reported to parallel memory formation in the rat using a water maze but, so far, there is no information on spine counts or shape in the radial arm maze (RAM, a frequently used paradigm for the evaluation of complex memory formation in the rodent.24 male Sprague-Dawley rats were divided into three groups, 8 were trained, 8 remained untrained in the RAM and 8 rats served as cage controls. Dendritic spine numbers and individual spine forms were counted in CA1, CA3 areas and dentate gyrus of hippocampus using a DIL dye method with subsequent quantification by the Neuronstudio software and the image J program.Working memory errors (WME and latency in the RAM were decreased along the training period indicating that animals performed the task. Total spine density was significantly increased following training in the RAM as compared to untrained rats and cage controls. The number of mushroom spines was significantly increased in the trained as compared to untrained and cage controls. Negative significant correlations between spine density and WME were observed in CA1 basal dendrites and in CA3 apical and basal dendrites. In addition, there was a significant negative correlation between spine density and latency in CA3 basal dendrites.The study shows that spine numbers are significantly increased in the trained group, an observation that may suggest the use of this method representing a morphological parameter for memory formation studies in the RAM. Herein, correlations between WME and latency in the RAM and spine density revealed a link between spine numbers and performance in the RAM.
Mahmmoud, Rasha Refaat; Sase, Sunetra; Aher, Yogesh D; Sase, Ajinkya; Gröger, Marion; Mokhtar, Maher; Höger, Harald; Lubec, Gert
Changes in synaptic structure and efficacy including dendritic spine number and morphology have been shown to underlie neuronal activity and size. Moreover, the shapes of individual dendritic spines were proposed to correlate with their capacity for structural change. Spine numbers and morphology were reported to parallel memory formation in the rat using a water maze but, so far, there is no information on spine counts or shape in the radial arm maze (RAM), a frequently used paradigm for the evaluation of complex memory formation in the rodent. 24 male Sprague-Dawley rats were divided into three groups, 8 were trained, 8 remained untrained in the RAM and 8 rats served as cage controls. Dendritic spine numbers and individual spine forms were counted in CA1, CA3 areas and dentate gyrus of hippocampus using a DIL dye method with subsequent quantification by the Neuronstudio software and the image J program. Working memory errors (WME) and latency in the RAM were decreased along the training period indicating that animals performed the task. Total spine density was significantly increased following training in the RAM as compared to untrained rats and cage controls. The number of mushroom spines was significantly increased in the trained as compared to untrained and cage controls. Negative significant correlations between spine density and WME were observed in CA1 basal dendrites and in CA3 apical and basal dendrites. In addition, there was a significant negative correlation between spine density and latency in CA3 basal dendrites. The study shows that spine numbers are significantly increased in the trained group, an observation that may suggest the use of this method representing a morphological parameter for memory formation studies in the RAM. Herein, correlations between WME and latency in the RAM and spine density revealed a link between spine numbers and performance in the RAM.
Full Text Available Abnormal prefrontal functioning plays a central role in the working memory (WM deficits of schizophrenic patients, but the nature of the relationship between WM and prefrontal activation remains undetermined. Using two functional neuroimaging methods, we investigated the neural correlates of remembering and forgetting in schizophrenic and healthy participants. We focused on the brain activation during WM maintenance phase with event-related functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI. We also examined oxygenated hemoglobin changes in relation to memory performance with the near-infrared spectroscopy (NIRS using the same spatial WM task. Distinct types of correct and error trials were segregated for analysis. fMRI data indicated that prefrontal activation was increased during WM maintenance on correct trials in both schizophrenic and healthy subjects. However, a significant difference was observed in the functional asymmetry of frontal activation pattern. Healthy subjects showed increased activation in the right frontal, temporal and cingulate regions. Schizophrenic patients showed greater activation compared with control subjects in left frontal, temporal and parietal regions as well as in right frontal regions. We also observed increased 'false memory' errors in schizophrenic patients, associated with increased prefrontal activation and resembling the activation pattern observed on the correct trials. NIRS data replicated the fMRI results. Thus, increased frontal activity was correlated with the accuracy of WM in both healthy control and schizophrenic participants. The major difference between the two groups concerned functional asymmetry; healthy subjects recruited right frontal regions during spatial WM maintenance whereas schizophrenic subjects recruited a wider network in both hemispheres to achieve the same level of memory performance. Increased "false memory" errors and accompanying bilateral prefrontal activation in schizophrenia suggest
Sahan, Muhammet Ikbal; Verguts, Tom; Boehler, Carsten Nicolas; Pourtois, Gilles; Fias, Wim
Selective attention is not limited to information that is physically present in the external world, but can also operate on mental representations in the internal world. However, it is not known whether the mechanisms of attentional selection operate in similar fashions in physical and mental space. We studied the spatial distributions of attention for items in physical and mental space by comparing how successfully distractors were rejected at varying distances from the attended location. The results indicated very similar distribution characteristics of spatial attention in physical and mental space. Specifically, we found that performance monotonically improved with increasing distractor distance relative to the attended location, suggesting that distractor confusability is particularly pronounced for nearby distractors, relative to distractors farther away. The present findings suggest that mental representations preserve their spatial configuration in working memory, and that similar mechanistic principles underlie selective attention in physical and in mental space.
Langner, Robert; Sternkopf, Melanie A; Kellermann, Tanja S; Grefkes, Christian; Kurth, Florian; Schneider, Frank; Zilles, Karl; Eickhoff, Simon B
The neurobiological organization of action-oriented working memory is not well understood. To elucidate the neural correlates of translating visuo-spatial stimulus sequences into delayed (memory-guided) sequential actions, we measured brain activity using functional magnetic resonance imaging while participants encoded sequences of four to seven dots appearing on fingers of a left or right schematic hand. After variable delays, sequences were to be reproduced with the corresponding fingers. Recall became less accurate with longer sequences and was initiated faster after long delays. Across both hands, encoding and recall activated bilateral prefrontal, premotor, superior and inferior parietal regions as well as the basal ganglia, whereas hand-specific activity was found (albeit to a lesser degree during encoding) in contralateral premotor, sensorimotor, and superior parietal cortex. Activation differences after long versus short delays were restricted to motor-related regions, indicating that rehearsal during long delays might have facilitated the conversion of the memorandum into concrete motor programs at recall. Furthermore, basal ganglia activity during encoding selectively predicted correct recall. Taken together, the results suggest that to-be-reproduced visuo-spatial sequences are encoded as prospective action representations (motor intentions), possibly in addition to retrospective sensory codes. Overall, our study supports and extends multi-component models of working memory, highlighting the notion that sensory input can be coded in multiple ways depending on what the memorandum is to be used for. Copyright © 2013 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
Mitolo, Micaela; Borella, Erika; Meneghetti, Chiara; Carbone, Elena; Pazzaglia, Francesca
This study aimed to assess the efficacy of a route-learning training in a group of older adults living in a residential care home. We verified the presence of training-specific effects in tasks similar to those trained - route-learning tasks - as well as transfer effects on related cognitive processes - visuo-spatial short-term memory (VSSTM; Corsi Blocks Test (CBT), forward version), visuo-spatial working memory (VSWM; CBT, backward version; Pathway Span Tasks; Jigsaw Puzzle Test) - and in self-report measures. The maintenance of training benefits was examined after 3 months. Thirty 70-90-year-old residential care home residents were randomly assigned to the route-learning training group or to an active control group (involved in non-visuo-spatial activities). The trained group performed better than the control group in the route-learning tasks, retaining this benefit 3 months later. Immediate transfer effects were also seen in visuo-spatial span tasks (i.e., CBT forward and backward version and Pathway Span Task); these benefits had been substantially maintained at the 3-month follow-up. These findings suggest that a training on route learning is a promising approach to sustain older adults' environmental learning and some related abilities (e.g., VSSTM and VSWM), even in residential care home residents.
Xie, Meilan; Yan, Jie; He, Chao; Yang, Li; Tan, Gang; Li, Chao; Hu, Zhian; Wang, Jiali
Hippocampus-dependent learning memory is sensitive to sleep deprivation (SD). Although the ionotropic glutamate receptors play a vital role in synaptic plasticity and learning and memory, however, whether the expression of these receptor subunits is modulated by sleep loss remains unclear. In the present study, western blotting was performed by probing with specific antibodies against the ionotropic α-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazolepropionic acid (AMPA) receptor subunits GluA1, GluA2, GluA3, and against the N-methyl-d-aspartate (NMDA) glutamate receptor subunits GluN1, GluN2A, GluN2B. In hippocampus, down regulation of surface GluA1 and GluN2A surface expression were observed in both SD groups. However, surface expression level of GluA2, GluA3, GluN1 and GluN2B was significantly up-regulated in 8h-SD rats when compared to the 4h-SD rats. In parallel with the complex changes in AMPA and NMDA receptor subunit expressions, we found the 8h-SD impaired rat spatial working memory in 30-s-delay T-maze task, whereas no impairment of spatial learning was observed in 4h-SD rats. These results indicate that sleep loss alters the relative expression levels of the AMPA and NMDA receptors, thus affects the synaptic strength and capacity for plasticity and partially contributes to spatial memory impairment. Copyright © 2015. Published by Elsevier B.V.
Fiacconi, Chris M; Milliken, Bruce
The purpose of the present study was to highlight the role of location-identity binding mismatches in obscuring explicit awareness of a strong contingency. In a spatial-priming procedure, we introduced a high likelihood of location-repeat trials. Experiments 1, 2a, and 2b demonstrated that participants' explicit awareness of this contingency was heavily influenced by the local match in location-identity bindings. In Experiment 3, we sought to determine why location-identity binding mismatches produce such low levels of contingency awareness. Our results suggest that binding mismatches can interfere substantially with visual-memory performance. We attribute the low levels of contingency awareness to participants' inability to remember the critical location-identity binding in the prime on a trial-to-trial basis. These results imply a close interplay between object files and visual working memory.
Pearson-Leary, Jiah; McNay, Ewan C.
Increasing evidence suggests that abnormal brain accumulation of amyloid-β1–42 (Aβ1–42) oligomers plays a causal role in Alzheimer’s disease (AD), and in particular may cause the cognitive deficits that are the hallmark of AD. In vitro, Aβ1–42 oligomers impair insulin signaling and suppress neural functioning. We previously showed that endogenous insulin signaling is an obligatory component of normal hippocampal function, and that disrupting this signaling led to a rapid impairment of spatial working memory, while delivery of exogenous insulin to the hippocampus enhanced both memory and metabolism; diet-induced insulin resistance both impaired spatial memory and prevented insulin from increasing metabolism or cognitive function. Hence, we tested the hypothesis that Aβ1–42 oligomers could acutely impair hippocampal metabolic and cognitive processes in vivo in the rat. Our findings support this hypothesis: Aβ1–42 oligomers impaired spontaneous alternation behavior while preventing the task-associated dip in hippocampal ECF glucose observed in control animals. In addition, Aβ1–42 oligomers decreased plasma membrane translocation of the insulin-sensitive glucose transporter 4 (GluT4), and impaired insulin signaling as measured by phosphorylation of Akt. These data show in vivo that Aβ1–42 oligomers can rapidly impair hippocampal cognitive and metabolic processes, and provide support for the hypothesis that elevated Aβ1–42 leads to cognitive impairment via interference with hippocampal insulin signaling. PMID:22430529
Adeniyi, P A; Omatsuli, E P; Akinyemi, A J; Ishola, A O
There is a greater prevalence of cigarette smoking among caffeine dependent individuals. This study therefore sought to assess the effect of nicotine and/or caffeine on some key biochemical indices and neurobehavioural parameters associated with brain function in male mice. Forty male BALB/c mice were divided into 4 groups of 10 animals each; Group A serve as the control and received normal saline (s.c), Group B received 2mg/kg body weight of nicotine (s.c), Group C received 2mg/kg body weight of caffeine (s.c) and Group D received 2mg/kg of nicotine and 2mg/kg of caffeine (s.c). The experiment lasted for 21 days, and then the animals were subjected to behavioral test. Thereafter the animals were sacrificed and their brain isolated for the determination of endothelial nitric oxide (NO) level, acetylcholinesterase (AChE), arginase (Arg) and adenosine deaminase (ADA) activities; as well as some antioxidant indices. Administration of nicotine or caffeine caused a significant (Pcaffeine cognitive properties through a significant increase in non-spatial working memory whereas; it was otherwise on the spatial working memory and motor coordination. Therefore, we can suggest from our present study that caffeine enhances the effect of nicotine either synergistically or additively on memory and motor function and some key biochemical indices associated with brain function in male mice. Copyright Â© 2016. Published by Elsevier B.V.
Diwadkar, V A; Carpenter, P A; Just, M A
Functional MRI was used to determine how the constituents of the cortical network subserving dynamic spatial working memory respond to two types of increases in task complexity. Participants mentally maintained the most recent location of either one or three objects as the three objects moved discretely in either a two- or three-dimensional array. Cortical activation in the dorsolateral prefrontal (DLPFC) and the parietal cortex increased as a function of the number of object locations to be maintained and the dimensionality of the display. An analysis of the response characteristics of the individual voxels showed that a large proportion were activated only when both the variables imposed the higher level of demand. A smaller proportion were activated specifically in response to increases in task demand associated with each of the independent variables. A second experiment revealed the same effect of dimensionality in the parietal cortex when the movement of objects was signaled auditorily rather than visually, indicating that the additional representational demands induced by 3-D space are independent of input modality. The comodulation of activation in the prefrontal and parietal areas by the amount of computational demand suggests that the collaboration between areas is a basic feature underlying much of the functionality of spatial working memory. Copyright 2000 Academic Press.
Golob, Edward J; Taube, Jeffrey S
Tasks using appetitive reinforcers show that following disorientation rats use the shape of an arena to reorient, and cannot distinguish two geometrically similar corners to obtain a reward, despite the presence of a prominent visual cue that provides information to differentiate the two corners. Other studies show that disorientation impairs performance on certain appetitive, but not aversive, tasks. This study evaluated whether rats would make similar geometric errors in a working memory task that used aversive reinforcement. We hypothesized that in a task that used aversive reinforcement rats that were initially disoriented would not reorient by arena shape and thus make similar geometric errors. Tests were performed in a rectangular arena having one polarizing cue. In the appetitive condition water consumption was the reward. The aversive condition was a water maze task with reinforcement provided by escape to a hidden platform. In the aversive condition rats returned to the reinforced corner significantly more often than in the dry condition, and did not favor the diagonally opposite corner. Results show that rats can use cues besides arena shape to reorient in an aversive reinforcement condition. These findings may also reflect different strategies, with an escape/homing strategy in the wet condition and a foraging strategy in the dry condition.
Flávia Schechtman Belham
Full Text Available Emotion, importantly displayed by facial expressions, is one of the most significant memory modulators. The interaction between memory and the different emotional valences change across lifespan, while young adults (YA are expected to better recall negative events (Negativity Bias Hypothesis, older adults (OA tend to focus on positive stimuli (Positivity Effect Hypothesis. This research work aims at verifying whether cortical electrical activity of these two age groups would also be differently influenced by emotional valences in a visuo-spatial working memory task. 27 YA (13 males and 25 OA (14 males, all healthy volunteers, underwent electroencephalographic recordings (21 scalp electrodes montage, while performing the Spatial Delayed Recognition Span Task using a touch screen with different stimuli categories: neutral, positive and negative faces and geometric pictures. YA obtained higher scores than OA, and showed higher activation of theta and alpha bands in the frontal and midline regions, besides a more evident right-hemispheric asymmetry on alpha band when compared to OA. For both age groups, performance in the task was worse for positive faces than to negative and to neutral faces. Facial stimuli induced a better performance and higher alpha activation on the pre-frontal region for YA, and on the midline, occipital and left temporal regions for OA when compared to geometric figures. The superior performance of YA was expected due to the natural cognitive deficits connected to ageing, as was a better performance with facial stimuli due to the evolutionary importance of faces. These results were related to cortical activity on areas of importance for action-planning, decision making and sustained attention. Taken together, they are in accordance with the Negativity Bias but do not support the Positivity Effect. The methodology used was able to identify age-related differences in cortical activity during emotional mnemonic processing and
Waite, Jane; Beck, Sarah R.; Heald, Mary; Powis, Laurie; Oliver, Chris
Working memory (WM) impairments might amplify behavioural difference in genetic syndromes. Murine models of Rubinstein-Taybi syndrome (RTS) evidence memory impairments but there is limited research on memory in RTS. Individuals with RTS and typically developing children completed WM tasks, with participants with RTS completing an IQ assessment and…
Liu, Siwei; Poh, Jia-Hou; Koh, Hui Li; Ng, Kwun Kei; Loke, Yng Miin; Lim, Joseph Kai Wei; Chong, Joanna Su Xian; Zhou, Juan
Spatial working memory (SWM) relies on the interplay of anatomically separated and interconnected large-scale brain networks. EEG studies often observe load-associated sustained negative activity during SWM retention. Yet, whether and how such sustained negative activity in retention relates to network-specific functional activation/deactivation and relates to individual differences in SWM capacity remain to be elucidated. To cover these gaps, we recorded concurrent EEG-fMRI data in 70 healthy young adults during the Sternberg delayed-match-to-sample SWM task with three memory load levels. To a subset of participants (N = 28) that performed the task properly and had artefact-free fMRI and EEG data, we employed a novel temporo-spatial principal component analysis to derive load-dependent negative slow wave (NSW) from retention-related event-related potentials. The associations between NSW responses with SWM capacity were divergent in the higher (N = 14) and lower (N = 14) SWM capacity groups. Specifically, larger load-related increase in NSW amplitude was associated with greater SWM capacity for the higher capacity group but lower SWM capacity for the lower capacity group. Furthermore, for the higher capacity group, larger NSW amplitude was related to greater activation in bilateral parietal areas of the fronto-parietal network (FPN) and greater deactivation in medial frontal gyrus and posterior mid-cingulate cortex of the default mode network (DMN) during retention. In contrast, the lower capacity group did not show similar pattern. Instead, greater NSW was linked to higher deactivation in right posterior middle temporal gyrus. Our findings shed light on the possible differential EEG-informed neural network mechanism during memory maintenance underlying individual differences in SWM capacity. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Taverniers, John; Van Ruysseveldt, Joris; Smeets, Tom; von Grumbkow, Jasper
While running a selection procedure, 27 male Belgian Special Forces candidates, with a mean age of 27.4 years (SD = 5.1), were randomly assigned to a no-stress control (n = 14) or a high-intensity stress group (n = 13). Participants in the latter group were exposed to an extremely strenuous mock prisoner of war (POW) exercise. Immediately after stress or control treatment, working memory and visuo-spatial declarative memory performances were measured by the digit span (DS) test and the Rey-Osterrieth complex figure (ROCF), respectively. Concurrently, stress levels were assessed by obtaining salivary cortisol measurements and subjectively by the NASA Task Load Index (TLX). As expected, exposure to high-intensity stress led to both robust cortisol increases and significant differences in TLX scores. Stress induction also significantly impaired DS and ROCF performances. Moreover, delta cortisol increases and ROCF performance in the POW stress group showed a significant negative correlation, while DS performances followed the same tendency. Summarizing, the current findings complement and extend previous work on hormonal stress effects, and the subsequent performance deterioration on two memory tests in a unique high-intensity stress environment.
Myatchin, Ivan; Lagae, Lieven
Working memory (WM) is very important for normal development. The fronto-parietal neuronal network supporting WM has already been well-studied. Less is known about the cortical activity changes during development of WM. We evaluated the maturation of visual WM network at the electrophysiological level in a group of normally developing children. Multichannel (n=31) event-related potentials (ERP) were measured during a visuo-spatial backmatching task in 69 childrens (6-16 years old). One-backmatching (BM1) and two-backmatching (BM2) tasks were performed. Age-related changes in behavioral parameters (commission and omission errors and reaction times) and ERP parameters (peak amplitudes and latencies) were analyzed between different ages. Clear improvement in performance from young childhood toward adolescence was seen at the behavioral level: decrease of errors and fastening of reaction times. At the electrophysiological level age-related changes were seen in peak latencies and especially in amplitudes. Different peaks have different dynamics in amplitudes and latencies: early peak amplitude decreased and latency shortened with age, which was not always seen in late peaks. This reflects developmental changes in intensity and speed of WM processing. Later peaks were more clearly seen over the right hemisphere in older children, illustrating hemispheric lateralization in visuo-spatial working memory. Our results indicate that not only at the behavioral but also at the electrophysiological level clear age-related dynamics in WM processing can be seen. Furthermore, with ERP we showed that different WM components follow different developmental trajectories. Our work demonstrates that age-related dynamics in intensity and speed of information processing during WM task is reflected in developmental changes in different ERP components. It also states that fronto-parietal visual WM network can be functional even before all its nodes are fully mature. Copyright © 2012 The
Sontag, Thomas-A.; Fuermaier, Anselm B. M.; Hauser, Joachim; Kaunzinger, Ivo; Tucha, Oliver; Lange, Klaus W.
The spontaneously hypertensive rat (SHR) is an established animal model of ADHD. It has been suggested that ADHD symptoms arise from deficits in executive functions such as working memory, attentional control and decision making. Both ADHD patients and SHRs show deficits in spatial working memory.
Schweinsburg, Alecia Denise
Marijuana is commonly used in adolescence, yet the impact on the developing brain is unclear. Working memory impairments have been observed in adult marijuana users after recent use, but may remit after a month of abstinence. The differential effects related to recent use and abstinence have not been delineated in adolescents. To address this question, three studies examined functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) brain response during spatial working memory (SWM) among adolescents. Adol...
Hagewoud, Roelina; Havekes, Robbert; Novati, Arianna; Keijser, Jan N.; van der Zee, Eddy A.; Meerlo, Peter
Sleep is important for brain function and cognitive performance. Sleep deprivation (SD) may affect subsequent learning capacity and ability to form new memories, particularly in the case of hippocampus-dependent tasks. In the present study we examined whether SD for 6 or 12 h during the normal
Amira F.A. Ibrahim
Conclusions: Dysfunctional engagement of WM circuitry, and aberrant functional connectivity of ‘task-negative’ regions in NF1 patients may underlie spatial WM difficulties characteristic of the disorder.
Full Text Available Understanding the role of the bioactive lipid mediator sphingosine 1-phosphate (S1P within the central nervous system has recently gained more and more attention, as it has been connected to major diseases such as multiple sclerosis and Alzheimer's disease. Even though much data about the functions of the five S1P receptors has been collected for other organ systems, we still lack a complete understanding for their specific roles, in particular within the brain. Therefore, it was the aim of this study to further elucidate the role of S1P receptor subtype 3 (S1P3 in vivo and in vitro with a special focus on the hippocampus. Using an S1P3 knock-out mouse model we applied a range of behavioral tests, performed expression studies and whole cell patch clamp recordings in acute hippocampal slices. We were able to show that S1P3 deficient mice display a significant spatial working memory deficit within the T-maze test, but not in anxiety related tests. Furthermore, S1p3 mRNA was expressed throughout the hippocampal formation. Principal neurons in area CA3 lacking S1P3 showed significantly increased interspike intervals and a significantly decreased input resistance. Upon stimulation with S1P CA3 principal neurons from both wildtype and S1P3-/- mice displayed significantly increased evoked EPSC amplitudes and decay times, whereas rise times remained unchanged. These results suggest a specific involvement of S1P3 for the establishment of spatial working memory and neuronal excitability within the hippocampus.
Oberlin, Lauren E.; Verstynen, Timothy D.; Burzynska, Agnieszka Z.; Voss, Michelle W.; Prakash, Ruchika Shaurya; Chaddock-Heyman, Laura; Wong, Chelsea; Fanning, Jason; Awick, Elizabeth; Gothe, Neha; Phillips, Siobhan M.; Mailey, Emily; Ehlers, Diane; Olson, Erin; Wojcicki, Thomas
White matter structure declines with advancing age and has been associated with a decline in memory and executive processes in older adulthood. Yet, recent research suggests that higher physical activity and fitness levels may be associated with less white matter degeneration in late life, although the tract-specificity of this relationship is not well understood. In addition, these prior studies infrequently associate measures of white matter microstructure to cognitive outcomes, so the beha...
Caterino, Linda C.; Verdi, Michael P.
Objective: The Kulhavy model for text learning using organized spatial displays proposes that learning will be increased when participants view visual images prior to related text. In contrast to previous studies, this study also included students who exhibited symptoms of ADHD. Method: Participants were presented with either a map-text or…
Street, Whitney N.; Wang, Ranxiao Frances
The perspective-taking task is one of the most common paradigms used to study the nature of spatial memory, and better performance for certain orientations is generally interpreted as evidence of spatial representations using these reference directions. However, performance advantages can also result from the relative ease in certain…
Ashkenazi, Sarit; Rosenberg-Lee, Miriam; Metcalfe, Arron W.S.; Swigart, Anna G.; Menon, Vinod
The study of developmental disorders can provide a unique window into the role of domain-general cognitive abilities and neural systems in typical and atypical development. Mathematical disabilities (MD) are characterized by marked difficulty in mathematical cognition in the presence of preserved intelligence and verbal ability. Although studies of MD have most often focused on the role of core deficits in numerical processing, domain-general cognitive abilities, in particular working memory (WM), have also been implicated. Here we identify specific WM components that are impaired in children with MD and then examine their role in arithmetic problem solving. Compared to typically developing (TD) children, the MD group demonstrated lower arithmetic performance and lower visuo-spatial working memory (VSWM) scores with preserved abilities on the phonological and central executive components of WM. Whole brain analysis revealed that, during arithmetic problem solving, left posterior parietal cortex, bilateral dorsolateral and ventrolateral prefrontal cortex, cingulate gyrus and precuneus, and fusiform gyrus responses were positively correlated with VSWM ability in TD children, but not in the MD group. Additional analyses using a priori posterior parietal cortex regions previously implicated in WM tasks, demonstrated a convergent pattern of results during arithmetic problem solving. These results suggest that MD is characterized by a common locus of arithmetic and VSWM deficits at both the cognitive and functional neuroanatomical levels. Unlike TD children, children with MD do not use VSWM resources appropriately during arithmetic problem solving. This work advances our understanding of VSWM as an important domain-general cognitive process in both typical and atypical mathematical skill development. PMID:23896444
Ashkenazi, Sarit; Rosenberg-Lee, Miriam; Metcalfe, Arron W S; Swigart, Anna G; Menon, Vinod
The study of developmental disorders can provide a unique window into the role of domain-general cognitive abilities and neural systems in typical and atypical development. Mathematical disabilities (MD) are characterized by marked difficulty in mathematical cognition in the presence of preserved intelligence and verbal ability. Although studies of MD have most often focused on the role of core deficits in numerical processing, domain-general cognitive abilities, in particular working memory (WM), have also been implicated. Here we identify specific WM components that are impaired in children with MD and then examine their role in arithmetic problem solving. Compared to typically developing (TD) children, the MD group demonstrated lower arithmetic performance and lower visuo-spatial working memory (VSWM) scores with preserved abilities on the phonological and central executive components of WM. Whole brain analysis revealed that, during arithmetic problem solving, left posterior parietal cortex, bilateral dorsolateral and ventrolateral prefrontal cortex, cingulate gyrus and precuneus, and fusiform gyrus responses were positively correlated with VSWM ability in TD children, but not in the MD group. Additional analyses using a priori posterior parietal cortex regions previously implicated in WM tasks, demonstrated a convergent pattern of results during arithmetic problem solving. These results suggest that MD is characterized by a common locus of arithmetic and VSWM deficits at both the cognitive and functional neuroanatomical levels. Unlike TD children, children with MD do not use VSWM resources appropriately during arithmetic problem solving. This work advances our understanding of VSWM as an important domain-general cognitive process in both typical and atypical mathematical skill development. © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Baddeley, A D
The current state of A. D. Baddeley and G. J. Hitch's (1974) multicomponent working memory model is reviewed. The phonological and visuospatial subsystems have been extensively investigated, leading both to challenges over interpretation of individual phenomena and to more detailed attempts to model the processes underlying the subsystems. Analysis of the controlling central executive has proved more challenging, leading to a proposed clarification in which the executive is assumed to be a limited capacity attentional system, aided by a newly postulated fourth system, the episodic buffer. Current interest focuses most strongly on the link between working memory and long-term memory and on the processes allowing the integration of information from the component subsystems. The model has proved valuable in accounting for data from a wide range of participant groups under a rich array of task conditions. Working memory does still appear to be working.
Mammarella, Irene C.; Cornoldi, Cesare; Pazzaglia, Francesca; Toso, Cristina; Grimoldi, Mario; Vio, Claudio
The paper describes the performance of three children with specific visuospatial working memory (VSWM) impairments (Study 1) and three children with visuospatial (nonverbal) learning disabilities (Study 2) assessed with a battery of working memory (WM) tests and with a number of school achievement tasks. Overall, performance on WM tests provides…
.... Understanding the mechanisms and structures underlying working memory is, hence, one of the most important scientific issues that need to be addressed to improve the efficiency and performance...
Fagot, Joël; De Lillo, Carlo
Two experiments assessed if non-human primates can be meaningfully compared to humans in a non-verbal test of serial recall. A procedure was used that was derived from variations of the Corsi test, designed to test the effects of sequence structure and movement path length in humans. Two baboons were tested in Experiment 1. The monkeys showed several attributes of human serial recall. These included an easier recall of sequences with a shorter number of items and of sequences characterized by a shorter path length when the number of items was kept constant. However, the accuracy and speed of processing did not indicate that the monkeys were able to benefit from the spatiotemporal structure of sequences. Humans tested in Experiment 2 showed a quantitatively longer memory span, and, in contrast with monkeys, benefitted from sequence structure. The results are discussed in relation to differences in how human and non-human primates segment complex visual patterns. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Bengson, Jesse J.; Mangun, George R.
A growing literature suggests that working memory and attention are closely related constructs. Both involve the selection of task-relevant information, and both are characterized by capacity limits. Furthermore, studies using a variety of methodological approaches have demonstrated convergent working memory and attention-related processing at the individual, neural and behavioral level. Given the varieties of both constructs, the specific kinds of attention and WM must be considered. We find...
Sandrini, Marco; Rossini, Paolo Maria; Miniussi, Carlo
The functional organization of working memory (WM) in the human prefrontal cortex remains unclear. The present study used repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS) to clarify the role of the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (dlPFC) both in the types of information (verbal vs. spatial), and the types of processes (maintenance vs.…
Jung, Eun Sook; Reid, Norman
Working memory capacity has been shown to be an important factor in controlling understanding in the sciences. Attitudes related to studies in the sciences are also known to be important in relation to success in learning. It might be argued that if working memory capacity is a rate controlling feature of learning and success in understanding…
Alarcón, Gabriela; Cservenka, Anita; Fair, Damien A; Nagel, Bonnie J
Adolescence is a developmental period characterized by notable changes in behavior, physical attributes, and an increase in endogenous sex steroid hormones, which may impact cognitive functioning. Moreover, sex differences in brain structure are present, leading to differences in neural function and cognition. Here, we examine sex differences in performance and blood oxygen level-dependent (BOLD) activation in a sample of adolescents during a spatial working memory (SWM) task. We also examine whether endogenous testosterone levels mediate differential brain activity between the sexes. Adolescents between ages 10 and 16 years completed a SWM functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) task, and serum hormone levels were assessed within seven days of scanning. While there were no sex differences in task performance (accuracy and reaction time), differences in BOLD response between girls and boys emerged, with girls deactivating brain regions in the default mode network and boys showing increased response in SWM-related brain regions of the frontal cortex. These results suggest that adolescent boys and girls adopted distinct neural strategies, while maintaining spatial cognitive strategies that facilitated comparable cognitive performance of a SWM task. A nonparametric bootstrapping procedure revealed that testosterone did not mediate sex-specific brain activity, suggesting that sex differences in BOLD activation during SWM may be better explained by other factors, such as early organizational effects of sex steroids or environmental influences. Elucidating sex differences in neural function and the influence of gonadal hormones can serve as a basis of comparison for understanding sexually dimorphic neurodevelopment and inform sex-specific psychopathology that emerges in adolescence. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
De Jaeger, Xavier; Courtey, Julie; Brus, Maïna; Artinian, Julien; Villain, Hélène; Bacquié, Elodie; Roullet, Pascal
Reconsolidation is necessary for the restabilization of reactivated memory traces. However, experimental parameters have been suggested as boundary conditions for this process. Here we investigated the role of a spatial memory trace's age, strength, and update on the reconsolidation process in mice. We first found that protein synthesis is…
Ang, Su Yin; Lee, Kerry
Previous research with adults found that spatial short-term and working memory tasks impose similar demands on executive resources. We administered spatial short-term and working memory tasks to 8- and 11-year-olds in three separate experiments. In Experiments 1 and 2 an executive suppression task (random number generation) was found to impair performances on a short-term memory task (Corsi blocks), a working memory task (letter rotation), and a spatial visualisation task (paper folding). In Experiment 3 an articulatory suppression task only impaired performance on the working memory task. These results suggest that short-term and working memory performances are dependent on executive resources. The degree to which the short-term memory task was dependent on executive resources was expected to be related to the amount of experience children have had with such tasks. Yet we found no significant age-related suppression effects. This was attributed to differences in employment of cognitive strategies by the older children.
Knowles, Emma E M; Carless, Melanie A; de Almeida, Marcio A A; Curran, Joanne E; McKay, D Reese; Sprooten, Emma; Dyer, Thomas D; Göring, Harald H; Olvera, Rene; Fox, Peter; Almasy, Laura; Duggirala, Ravi; Kent, Jack W; Blangero, John; Glahn, David C
It is well established that risk for developing psychosis is largely mediated by the influence of genes, but identifying precisely which genes underlie that risk has been problematic. Focusing on endophenotypes, rather than illness risk, is one solution to this problem. Impaired cognition is a well-established endophenotype of psychosis. Here we aimed to characterize the genetic architecture of cognition using phenotypically detailed models as opposed to relying on general IQ or individual neuropsychological measures. In so doing we hoped to identify genes that mediate cognitive ability, which might also contribute to psychosis risk. Hierarchical factor models of genetically clustered cognitive traits were subjected to linkage analysis followed by QTL region-specific association analyses in a sample of 1,269 Mexican American individuals from extended pedigrees. We identified four genome wide significant QTLs, two for working and two for spatial memory, and a number of plausible and interesting candidate genes. The creation of detailed models of cognition seemingly enhanced the power to detect genetic effects on cognition and provided a number of possible candidate genes for psychosis. © 2013 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
Silvia P. Caminiti
Full Text Available This fMRI study deals with the neural correlates of spatial and objects working memory (SWM and OWM in elderly subjects (ESs and idiopathic Parkinson’s disease (IPD. Normal aging and IPD can be associated with a WM decline. In IPD population, some studies reported similar SWM and OWM deficits; others reported a greater SWM than OWM impairment. In the present fMRI research, we investigated whether compensated IPD patients and elderly subjects with comparable performance during the execution of SWM and OWM tasks would present differences in WM-related brain activations. We found that the two groups recruited a prevalent left frontoparietal network when performing the SWM task and a bilateral network during OWM task execution. More specifically, the ESs showed bilateral frontal and subcortical activations in SWM, at difference with the IPD patients who showed a strict left lateralized network, consistent with frontostriatal degeneration in IPD. The overall brain activation in the IPD group was more extended as number of voxels with respect to ESs, suggesting underlying compensatory mechanisms. In conclusion, notwithstanding comparable WM performance, the two groups showed consistencies and differences in the WM activated networks. The latter underline the compensatory processes of normal typical and pathological aging.
Borralleras, Cristina; Mato, Susana; Amédée, Thierry; Matute, Carlos; Mulle, Christophe; Pérez-Jurado, Luis A; Campuzano, Victoria
Mice heterozygous for a complete deletion (CD) equivalent to the most common deletion found in individuals with Williams-Beuren syndrome (WBS) recapitulate relevant features of the neurocognitive phenotype, such as hypersociability, along with some neuroanatomical alterations in specific brain areas. However, the pathophysiological mechanisms underlying these phenotypes still remain largely unknown. We have studied the synaptic function and cognition in CD mice using hippocampal slices and a behavioral test sensitive to hippocampal function. We have found that long-term potentiation (LTP) elicited by theta burst stimulation (TBS) was significantly impaired in hippocampal field CA1 of CD animals. This deficit might be associated with the observed alterations in spatial working memory. However, we did not detect changes in presynaptic function, LTP induction mechanisms or AMPA and NMDA receptor function. Reduced levels of Brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) were present in the CA1-CA3 hippocampal region of CD mice, which could account for LTP deficits in these mice. Taken together, these results suggest a defect of CA1 synapses in CD mice to sustain synaptic strength after stimulation. These data represent the first description of synaptic functional deficits in CD mice and further highlights the utility of the CD model to study the mechanisms underlying the WBS neurocognitive profile.
Kokubo, Naomi; Inagaki, Masumi; Gunji, Atsuko; Kobayashi, Tomoka; Ohta, Hidenobu; Kajimoto, Osami; Kaga, Makiko
The present study aimed to investigate the developmental change in Visuo-Spatial Working Memory (VSWM) in typically developed children using a specially designed Advanced Trail Making Test for children (ATMT-C). We developed a new method for evaluating VSWM efficiency in children using a modified version ATMT to suit their shorter sustained attention. The ATMT-C consists of two parts; a number-based ATMT and a hiragana (Japanese phonogram)-based ATMT, both employing symbols familiar to young children. A total of 94 healthy participants (6-28 years of age) were enrolled in this study. A non-linear developmental change of VSWM efficiency was observed in the results from the ATMT-C. In the number-based ATMT, children under 8 years of age showed a relatively rapid increase in VSWM efficiency while older children (9-12 years) had a more gradual increase in VSWM efficiency. Results from the hiragana-based ATMT-C showed a slightly delayed increase pattern in VSWM efficiency compared to the pattern from the number-based ATMT. There were no significant differences in VSWM efficiency for gender, handedness and test order. VSWM in children gradually matures in a non steady-state manner and there is an important stage for VSWM maturation before reaching 12 years of age. VSWM efficiency may also vary depending on developmental condition of its cognitive subsystems. Copyright © 2012 The Japanese Society of Child Neurology. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Belham, Fl?via Schechtman; Satler, Corina; Garcia, Ana; Tomaz, Carlos; Gasbarri, Antonella; Rego, Artur; Tavares, Maria Clotilde H.
Emotion, importantly displayed by facial expressions, is one of the most significant memory modulators. The interaction between memory and the different emotional valences change across lifespan, while young adults (YA) are expected to better recall negative events (Negativity Bias Hypothesis), older adults (OA) tend to focus on positive stimuli (Positivity Effect Hypothesis). This research work aims at verifying whether cortical electrical activity of these two age groups would also be diffe...
Outlines the concept of working memory, with particular reference to a hypothetical subcomponent, the articulatory loop. Discusses the role of the loop in fluent adult reading, then examines the reading performance of adults with deficits in auditory verbal memory, showing that a capacity to articulate is not necessary for the effective…
Full Text Available Working memory denotes the ability to retain stimuli in mind that are no longer physically present and to perform mental operations on them. Electro- and magnetoencephalography allow investigating the short-term maintenance of acoustic stimuli at a high temporal resolution. Studies investigating working memory for non-spatial and spatial auditory information have suggested differential roles of regions along the putative auditory ventral and dorsal streams, respectively, in the processing of the different sound properties. Analyses of event-related potentials have shown sustained, memory load-dependent deflections over the retention periods. The topography of these waves suggested an involvement of modality-specific sensory storage regions. Spectral analysis has yielded information about the temporal dynamics of auditory working memory processing of individual stimuli, showing activation peaks during the delay phase whose timing was related to task performance. Coherence at different frequencies was enhanced between frontal and sensory cortex. In summary, auditory working memory seems to rely on the dynamic interplay between frontal executive systems and sensory representation regions.
Vogan, Vanessa M; Morgan, Benjamin R; Lee, Wayne; Powell, Tamara L; Smith, Mary Lou; Taylor, Margot J
Research on the neural bases of cognitive deficits in autism spectrum disorder (ASD) has shown that working memory (WM) difficulties are associated with abnormalities in the prefrontal cortex. However, cognitive load impacts these findings, and no studies have examined the relation between WM load and neural underpinnings in children with ASD. Thus, the current study determined the effects of cognitive load on WM, using a visuo-spatial WM capacity task in children with and without ASD with functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI). We used fMRI and a 1-back colour matching task (CMT) task with four levels of difficulty to compare the cortical activation patterns associated with WM in children (7-13 years old) with high functioning autism (N = 19) and matched controls (N = 17) across cognitive load. Performance on CMT was comparable between groups, with the exception of one difficulty level. Using linear trend analyses, the control group showed increasing activation as a function of difficulty level in frontal and parietal lobes, particularly between the highest difficulty levels, and decreasing activation as a function of difficulty level in the posterior cingulate and medial frontal gyri. In contrast, children with ASD showed increasing activation only in posterior brain regions and decreasing activation in the posterior cingulate and medial frontal gyri, as a function of difficulty level. Significant differences were found in the precuneus, dorsolateral prefrontal cortex and medial premotor cortex, where control children showed greater positive linear relations between cortical activity and task difficulty level, particularly at the highest difficulty levels, but children with ASD did not show these trends. Children with ASD showed differences in activation in the frontal and parietal lobes-both critical substrates for visuo-spatial WM. Our data suggest that children with ASD rely mainly on posterior brain regions associated with visual and lower level
Westlake, Kelly P; Johnson, Brian P; Creath, Robert A; Neff, Rachel M; Rogers, Mark W
Reactive balance recovery strategies following an unexpected loss of balance are crucial to the prevention of falls, head trauma and other major injuries in older adults. While a longstanding focus has been on understanding lower limb recovery responses, the upper limbs also play a critical role. However, when a fall occurs, little is known about the role of memory and attention shifting on the reach to grasp recovery strategy and what factors determine the speed and precision of this response beyond simple reaction time. The objective of this study was to compare response time and accuracy of a stabilizing grasp following a balance perturbation in older adult fallers compared to non-fallers and younger adults while loading the processing demands of non-spatial, verbal working memory. Working memory was engaged with a progressively challenging verb-generation task that was interrupted by an unexpected sideways platform perturbation and a pre-instructed reach to grasp response. Results revealed that the older adults, particularly those at high fall risk, demonstrated significantly increased movement time to handrail contact and grasping errors during conditions in which non-spatial memory was actively engaged. These findings provide preliminary evidence of the cognitive deficit in attention shifting away from an ongoing working memory task that underlies delayed and inaccurate protective reach to grasp responses in older adult fallers. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Working memory is a basic cognitive mechanism (or set of mechanisms) that is responsible for keeping track of multiple task related goals and subgoals, or integrating multiple sources of information...
Corona, Giulia; Vauzour, David; Hercelin, Justine; Williams, Claire M; Spencer, Jeremy P E
While much data exist for the effects of flavonoid-rich foods on spatial memory in rodents, there are no such data for foods/beverages predominantly containing hydroxycinnamates and phenolic acids. To address this, we investigated the effects of moderate Champagne wine intake, which is rich in these components, on spatial memory and related mechanisms relative to the alcohol- and energy-matched controls. In contrast to the isocaloric and alcohol-matched controls, supplementation with Champagne wine (1.78 ml/kg BW, alcohol 12.5% vol.) for 6 weeks led to an improvement in spatial working memory in aged rodents. Targeted protein arrays indicated that these behavioral effects were paralleled by the differential expression of a number of hippocampal and cortical proteins (relative to the isocaloric control group), including those involved in signal transduction, neuroplasticity, apoptosis, and cell cycle regulation. Western immunoblotting confirmed the differential modulation of brain-derived neurotrophic factor, cAMP response-element-binding protein (CREB), p38, dystrophin, 2',3'-cyclic-nucleotide 3'-phosphodiesterase, mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR), and Bcl-xL in response to Champagne supplementation compared to the control drink, and the modulation of mTOR, Bcl-xL, and CREB in response to alcohol supplementation. Our data suggest that smaller phenolics such as gallic acid, protocatechuic acid, tyrosol, caftaric acid, and caffeic acid, in addition to flavonoids, are capable of exerting improvements in spatial memory via the modulation in hippocampal signaling and protein expression. Changes in spatial working memory induced by the Champagne supplementation are linked to the effects of absorbed phenolics on cytoskeletal proteins, neurotrophin expression, and the effects of alcohol on the regulation of apoptotic events in the hippocampus and cortex.
de Ribaupierre, Anik; Bailleux, Christine
Attempts the theoretical rapprochement of two theoretical constructs on working memory, neo-Piagetian models and Baddeley's model. Summarizes both types of models, then discusses their similarities and differences. Presents the results of a longitudinal study that supported the idea that these models might be complementary rather than…
Lejbak, Lisa; Crossley, Margaret; Vrbancic, Mirna
Sex-related differences have been reported for performance and neural substrates on some working memory measures that carry a high cognitive load, including the popular n-back neuroimaging paradigm. Despite some evidence of a sex effect on the task, the influence of sex on performance represents a potential confound in neuroimaging research. The…
Brennan, Avis R.; Dolinsky, Beth; Vu, Mai-Anh T.; Stanley, Marion; Yeckel, Mark F.; Arnsten, Amy F. T.
Planning and directing thought and behavior require the working memory (WM) functions of prefrontal cortex. WM is compromised by stress, which activates phosphatidylinositol (PI)-mediated IP[subscript 3]-PKC intracellular signaling. PKC overactivation impairs WM operations and in vitro studies indicate that IP[subscript 3] receptor (IP[subscript…
Vermeij, Anouk; van Beek, Arenda H E A; Reijs, Babette L R; Claassen, Jurgen A H R; Kessels, Roy P C
Older adults show more bilateral prefrontal activation during cognitive performance than younger adults, who typically show unilateral activation. This over-recruitment has been interpreted as compensation for declining structure and function of the brain. Here we examined how the relationship between behavioral performance and prefrontal activation is modulated by different levels of working-memory load. Eighteen healthy older adults (70.8 ± 5.0 years; MMSE 29.3 ± 0.9) performed a spatial working-memory task (n-back). Oxygenated ([O2Hb]) and deoxygenated ([HHb]) hemoglobin concentration changes were registered by two functional Near-Infrared Spectroscopy (fNIRS) channels located over the left and right prefrontal cortex. Increased working-memory load resulted in worse performance compared to the control condition. [O2Hb] increased with rising working-memory load in both fNIRS channels. Based on the performance in the high working-memory load condition, the group was divided into low and high performers. A significant interaction effect of performance level and hemisphere on [O2Hb] increase was found, indicating that high performers were better able to keep the right prefrontal cortex engaged under high cognitive demand. Furthermore, in the low performers group, individuals with a larger decline in task performance from the control to the high working-memory load condition had a larger bilateral increase of [O2Hb]. The high performers did not show a correlation between performance decline and working-memory load related prefrontal activation changes. Thus, additional bilateral prefrontal activation in low performers did not necessarily result in better cognitive performance. Our study showed that bilateral prefrontal activation may not always be successfully compensatory. Individual behavioral performance should be taken into account to be able to distinguish successful and unsuccessful compensation or declined neural efficiency.
YuLeung To, Eric; Abbott, Kathy; Foster, Dale S; Helmer, D'Arcy
Impairments in working memory are typically associated with impairments in other cognitive faculties such as attentional processes and short-term memory. This paper briefly introduces neurofeedback as a treatment modality in general, and, more specifically, we review several of the current modalities successfully used in neurofeedback (NF) for the treatment of working memory deficits. Two case studies are presented to illustrate how neurofeedback is applied in treatment. The development of Low Resolution Electromagnetic Tomography (LORETA) and its application in neurofeedback now makes it possible to specifically target deep cortical/subcortical brain structures. Developments in neuroscience concerning neural networks, combined with highly specific yet practical NF technologies, makes neurofeedback of particular interest to neuropsychological practice, including the emergence of specific methodologies for treating very difficult working memory (WM) problems.
Zancada-Menendez, C; Alvarez-Suarez, P; Sampedro-Piquero, P; Cuesta, M; Begega, A
Ageing is characterized by a decline in the processes of retention and storage of spatial information. We have examined the behavioural performance of adult rats (3months old) and aged rats (18months old) in a spatial complex task (delayed match to sample). The spatial task was performed in the Morris water maze and consisted of three sessions per day over a period of three consecutive days. Each session consisted of two trials (one sample and retention) and inter-session intervals of 5min. Behavioural results showed that the spatial task was difficult for middle aged group. This worse execution could be associated with impairments of processing speed and spatial information retention. We examined the changes in the neuronal metabolic activity of different brain regions through cytochrome C oxidase histochemistry. Then, we performed MANOVA and Discriminant Function Analyses to determine the functional profile of the brain networks that are involved in the spatial learning of the adult and middle-aged groups. This multivariate analysis showed two principal functional networks that necessarily participate in this spatial learning. The first network was composed of the supramammillary nucleus, medial mammillary nucleus, CA3, and CA1. The second one included the anterior cingulate, prelimbic, and infralimbic areas of the prefrontal cortex, dentate gyrus, and amygdala complex (basolateral l and central subregions). There was a reduction in the hippocampal-supramammilar network in both learning groups, whilst there was an overactivation in the executive network, especially in the aged group. This response could be due to a higher requirement of the executive control in a complex spatial memory task in older animals. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Sasaki, Takuya; Piatti, Verónica C; Hwaun, Ernie; Ahmadi, Siavash; Lisman, John E; Leutgeb, Stefan; Leutgeb, Jill K
Complex spatial working memory tasks have been shown to require both hippocampal sharp-wave ripple (SWR) activity and dentate gyrus (DG) neuronal activity. We therefore asked whether DG inputs to CA3 contribute to spatial working memory by promoting SWR generation. Recordings from DG and CA3 while rats performed a dentate-dependent working memory task on an eight-arm radial maze revealed that the activity of dentate neurons and the incidence rate of SWRs both increased during reward consumption. We then found reduced reward-related CA3 SWR generation without direct input from dentate granule neurons. Furthermore, CA3 cells with place fields in not-yet-visited arms preferentially fired during SWRs at reward locations, and these prospective CA3 firing patterns were more pronounced for correct trials and were dentate-dependent. These results indicate that coordination of CA3 neuronal activity patterns by DG is necessary for the generation of neuronal firing patterns that support goal-directed behavior and memory.
Huang, Anna S; Klein, Daniel N; Leung, Hoi-Chung
Spatial working memory is a central cognitive process that matures through adolescence in conjunction with major changes in brain function and anatomy. Here we focused on late childhood and early adolescence to more closely examine the neural correlates of performance variability during this important transition period. Using a modified spatial 1-back task with two memory load conditions in an fMRI study, we examined the relationship between load-dependent neural responses and task performance in a sample of 39 youth aged 9-12 years. Our data revealed that between-subject differences in task performance was predicted by load-dependent deactivation in default network regions, including the ventral anterior cingulate cortex (vACC) and posterior cingulate cortex (PCC). Although load-dependent increases in activation in prefrontal and posterior parietal regions were only weakly correlated with performance, increased prefrontal-parietal coupling was associated with better performance. Furthermore, behavioral measures of executive function from as early as age 3 predicted current load-dependent deactivation in vACC and PCC. These findings suggest that both task positive and task negative brain activation during spatial working memory contributed to successful task performance in late childhood/early adolescence. This may serve as a good model for studying executive control deficits in developmental disorders. Copyright © 2015 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd.. All rights reserved.
Huang, Anna S.; Klein, Daniel N.; Leung, Hoi-Chung
Spatial working memory is a central cognitive process that matures through adolescence in conjunction with major changes in brain function and anatomy. Here we focused on late childhood and early adolescence to more closely examine the neural correlates of performance variability during this important transition period. Using a modified spatial 1-back task with two memory load conditions in an fMRI study, we examined the relationship between load-dependent neural responses and task performance in a sample of 39 youth aged 9–12 years. Our data revealed that between-subject differences in task performance was predicted by load-dependent deactivation in default network regions, including the ventral anterior cingulate cortex (vACC) and posterior cingulate cortex (PCC). Although load-dependent increases in activation in prefrontal and posterior parietal regions were only weakly correlated with performance, increased prefrontal-parietal coupling was associated with better performance. Furthermore, behavioral measures of executive function from as early as age 3 predicted current load-dependent deactivation in vACC and PCC. These findings suggest that both task positive and task negative brain activation during spatial working memory contributed to successful task performance in late childhood/early adolescence. This may serve as a good model for studying executive control deficits in developmental disorders. PMID:26562059
De Bundel, Dimitri; Smolders, Ilse; Yang, Rui; Albiston, Anthony L; Michotte, Yvette; Chai, Siew Yeen
The IRAP ligands Angiotensin IV (Ang IV) and LVV-haemorphin 7 (LVV-H7) enhance performance in a range of memory paradigms in normal rats and ameliorate memory deficits in rat models for amnesia. The mechanism by which these peptides facilitate memory remains to be elucidated. In recent in vitro experiments, we demonstrated that Ang IV and LVV-H7 potentiate activity-evoked glucose uptake into hippocampal neurons. This raises the possibility that IRAP ligands may facilitate memory in hippocampus-dependent tasks through enhancement of hippocampal glucose uptake. Acute intracerebroventricular (i.c.v.) administration of 1nmol Ang IV or 0.1nmol LVV-H7 in 3 months-old Sprague-Dawley rats enhanced spatial working memory in the plus maze spontaneous alternation task. Extracellular hippocampal glucose levels were monitored before, during and after behavioral testing using in vivo microdialysis. Extracellular hippocampal glucose levels decreased significantly to about 70% of baseline when the animals explored the plus maze, but remained constant when the animals were placed into a novel control chamber. Ang IV and LVV-H7 did not significantly alter hippocampal glucose levels compared to control animals in the plus maze or control chamber. Both peptides had no effect on hippocampal blood flow as determined by laser Doppler flowmetry, excluding that either peptide increased the hippocampal supply of glucose. We demonstrated for the first time that Ang IV and LVV-H7 enhance spatial working memory in the plus maze spontaneous alternation task but no in vivo evidence was found for enhanced hippocampal glucose uptake or blood flow.
Full Text Available Although left-right (L-R asymmetry is a fundamental feature of higher-order brain function, little is known about how asymmetry defects of the brain affect animal behavior. Previously, we identified structural and functional asymmetries in the circuitry of the mouse hippocampus resulting from the asymmetrical distribution of NMDA receptor GluR ε2 (NR2B subunits. We further examined the ε2 asymmetry in the inversus viscerum (iv mouse, which has randomized laterality of internal organs, and found that the iv mouse hippocampus exhibits right isomerism (bilateral right-sidedness in the synaptic distribution of the ε2 subunit, irrespective of the laterality of visceral organs. To investigate the effects of hippocampal laterality defects on higher-order brain functions, we examined the capacity of reference and working memories of iv mice using a dry maze and a delayed nonmatching-to-position (DNMTP task, respectively. The iv mice improved dry maze performance more slowly than control mice during acquisition, whereas the asymptotic level of performance was similar between the two groups. In the DNMTP task, the iv mice showed poorer accuracy than control mice as the retention interval became longer. These results suggest that the L-R asymmetry of hippocampal circuitry is critical for the acquisition of reference memory and the retention of working memory.
Full Text Available Information about where and when events happened seem naturally linked to each other, but only few studies have investigated whether and how they are associated in working memory. We tested whether the location of items and their temporal order are jointly or independently encoded. We also verified if spatio-temporal binding is influenced by the sensory modality of items. Participants were requested to memorize the location and/or the serial order of five items (environmental sounds or pictures sequentially presented from five different locations. Next, they were asked to recall either the item location or their order of presentation within the sequence. Attention during encoding was manipulated by contrasting blocks of trials in which participants were requested to encode only one feature, to blocks of trials where they had to encode both features. Results show an interesting interaction between task and attention. Accuracy in the serial order recall was affected by the simultaneous encoding of item location, whereas the recall of item location was unaffected by the concurrent encoding of the serial order of items. This asymmetric influence of attention on the two tasks was similar for the auditory and visual modality. Together, these data indicate that item location is processed in a relatively automatic fashion, whereas maintaining serial order is more demanding in terms of attention. The remarkably analogous results for auditory and visual memory performance, suggest that the binding of serial order and location in working memory is not modality-dependent, and may involve common intersensory mechanisms.
Full Text Available Recent studies have suggested that the visuospatial component of working memory (WM is selectively impaired in individuals with Down syndrome (DS, the deficit relating specifically to the spatial-simultaneous component, which is involved when stimuli are presented simultaneously. The present study aimed to analyze the effects of a computer-based program for training the spatial-simultaneous component of WM in terms of: specific effects (on spatial-simultaneous WM tasks; near and far transfer effects (on spatial-sequential and visuospatial abilities, and everyday memory tasks; and maintenance effects (one month after the training. A comparison was drawn between the results obtained when the training was led by parents at home as opposed to an expert in psychology.Thirty-nine children and adolescents with DS were allocated to one of two groups: the training was administered by an expert in one, and by appropriately-instructed parents in the other. The training was administered individually twice a week for a month, in 8 sessions lasting approximately 30 minutes each. Our participants’ performance improved after the training, and these results were maintained a month later in both groups. Overall, our findings suggest that spatial-simultaneous WM performance can be improved, obtaining specific and transfer gains; above all, it seems that, with adequate support, parents could effectively administer a WM training to their child.
Szymanik, J.; Zajenkowski, M.
The paper presents a study examining the role of working memory in quantifier verification. We created situations similar to the span task to compare numerical quantifiers of low and high rank, parity quantifiers and proportional quantifiers. The results enrich and support the data obtained
Szymanik, J.; Zajenkowski, M.
The paper presents a study examining the role of working memory in quantifier verification. We created situations similar to the span task to compare numerical quantifiers of low and high rank, parity quantifiers and proportional quantifiers. The results enrich and support the data obtained
Ben-Shalom, Asaf; Ganel, Tzvi
Representations in visual short-term memory are considered to contain relatively elaborated information on object structure. Conversely, representations in earlier stages of the visual hierarchy are thought to be dominated by a sensory-based, feed-forward buildup of information. In four experiments, we compared the spatial resolution of different object properties between two points in time along the processing hierarchy in visual short-term memory. Subjects were asked either to estimate the distance between objects or to estimate the size of one of the objects' features under two experimental conditions, of either a short or a long delay period between the presentation of the target stimulus and the probe. When different objects were referred to, similar spatial resolution was found for the two delay periods, suggesting that initial processing stages are sensitive to object-based properties. Conversely, superior resolution was found for the short, as compared with the long, delay when features were referred to. These findings suggest that initial representations in visual memory are hybrid in that they allow fine-grained resolution for object features alongside normal visual sensitivity to the segregation between objects. The findings are also discussed in reference to the distinction made in earlier studies between visual short-term memory and iconic memory.
Sligte, I.G.; Vandenbroucke, A.R.E.; Scholte, H.S.; Lamme, V.A.F.
Visual short-term memory (VSTM) enables us to actively maintain information in mind for a brief period of time after stimulus disappearance. According to recent studies, VSTM consists of three stages - iconic memory, fragile VSTM, and visual working memory - with increasingly stricter capacity
Eriksson, Johan; Vogel, Edward K.; Lansner, Anders; Bergström, Fredrik; Nyberg, Lars
The crucial role of working memory for temporary information processing and guidance of complex behavior has been recognized for many decades. There is emerging consensus that working memory maintenance results from the interactions among long-term memory representations and basic processes, including attention, that are instantiated as reentrant loops between frontal and posterior cortical areas, as well as subcortical structures. The nature of such interactions can account for capacity limitations, lifespan changes, and restricted transfer after working-memory training. Recent data and models indicate that working memory may also be based on synaptic plasticity, and that working memory can operate on non-consciously perceived information. PMID:26447571
Aher, Yogesh D; Subramaniyan, Saraswathi; Shanmugasundaram, Bharanidharan; Sase, Ajinkya; Saroja, Sivaprakasam R; Holy, Marion; Höger, Harald; Beryozkina, Tetyana; Sitte, Harald H; Leban, Johann J; Lubec, Gert
Various psychostimulants targeting monoamine neurotransmitter transporters (MATs) have been shown to rescue cognition in patients with neurological disorders and improve cognitive abilities in healthy subjects at low doses. Here, we examined the effects upon cognition of a chemically synthesized novel MAT inhibiting compound 2-(benzhydrylsulfinylmethyl)-4-methylthiazole (named as CE-104). The efficacy of CE-104 in blocking MAT [dopamine transporter (DAT), serotonin transporter (SERT), and norepinephrine transporter] was determined using in vitro neurotransmitter uptake assay. The effect of the drug at low doses (1 and 10 mg/kg) on spatial memory was studied in male rats in the radial arm maze (RAM). Furthermore, the dopamine receptor and transporter complex levels of frontal cortex (FC) tissue of trained and untrained animals treated either with the drug or vehicle were quantified on blue native PAGE (BN-PAGE). The drug inhibited dopamine (IC50: 27.88 μM) and norepinephrine uptake (IC50: 160.40 μM), but had a negligible effect on SERT. In the RAM, both drug-dose groups improved spatial working memory during the performance phase of RAM as compared to vehicle. BN-PAGE Western blot quantification of dopamine receptor and transporter complexes revealed that D1, D2, D3, and DAT complexes were modulated due to training and by drug effects. The drug's ability to block DAT and its influence on DAT and receptor complex levels in the FC is proposed as a possible mechanism for the observed learning and memory enhancement in the RAM.
Mayer, Jutta S; Neimat, Joseph; Folley, Bradley S; Bourne, Sarah K; Konrad, Peter E; Charles, David; Park, Sohee
Deep brain stimulation (DBS) of the subthalamic nucleus (STN) improves the motor symptoms of Parkinson's disease (PD). The STN may represent an important relay station not only in the motor but also the associative cortico-striato-thalamocortical pathway. Therefore, STN stimulation may alter cognitive functions, such as working memory (WM). We examined cortical effects of STN-DBS on WM in early PD patients using functional near-infrared spectroscopy. The effects of dopaminergic medication on WM were also examined. Lateral frontal activity during WM maintenance was greater when patients were taking dopaminergic medication. STN-DBS led to a trend-level worsening of WM performance, accompanied by increased lateral frontal activity during WM maintenance. These findings suggest that STN-DBS in PD might lead to functional modifications of the basal ganglia-thalamocortical pathway during WM maintenance.
Fagan, William F; Lewis, Mark A; Auger-Méthé, Marie; Avgar, Tal; Benhamou, Simon; Breed, Greg; LaDage, Lara; Schlägel, Ulrike E; Tang, Wen-wu; Papastamatiou, Yannis P; Forester, James; Mueller, Thomas
Memory is critical to understanding animal movement but has proven challenging to study. Advances in animal tracking technology, theoretical movement models and cognitive sciences have facilitated research in each of these fields, but also created a need for synthetic examination of the linkages between memory and animal movement. Here, we draw together research from several disciplines to understand the relationship between animal memory and movement processes. First, we frame the problem in terms of the characteristics, costs and benefits of memory as outlined in psychology and neuroscience. Next, we provide an overview of the theories and conceptual frameworks that have emerged from behavioural ecology and animal cognition. Third, we turn to movement ecology and summarise recent, rapid developments in the types and quantities of available movement data, and in the statistical measures applicable to such data. Fourth, we discuss the advantages and interrelationships of diverse modelling approaches that have been used to explore the memory-movement interface. Finally, we outline key research challenges for the memory and movement communities, focusing on data needs and mathematical and computational challenges. We conclude with a roadmap for future work in this area, outlining axes along which focused research should yield rapid progress. © 2013 John Wiley & Sons Ltd/CNRS.
Richey, J. Elizabeth; Phillips, Jeffrey S.; Schunn, Christian D.; Schneider, Walter
Analogical reasoning has been hypothesized to critically depend upon working memory through correlational data , but less work has tested this relationship through experimental manipulation . An opportunity for examining the connection between working memory and analogical reasoning has emerged from the growing, although somewhat controversial, body of literature suggests complex working memory training can sometimes lead to working memory improvements that transfer to novel working memory tasks. This study investigated whether working memory improvements, if replicated, would increase analogical reasoning ability. We assessed participants’ performance on verbal and visual analogy tasks after a complex working memory training program incorporating verbal and spatial tasks , . Participants’ improvements on the working memory training tasks transferred to other short-term and working memory tasks, supporting the possibility of broad effects of working memory training. However, we found no effects on analogical reasoning. We propose several possible explanations for the lack of an impact of working memory improvements on analogical reasoning. PMID:25188356
J Elizabeth Richey
Full Text Available Analogical reasoning has been hypothesized to critically depend upon working memory through correlational data, but less work has tested this relationship through experimental manipulation. An opportunity for examining the connection between working memory and analogical reasoning has emerged from the growing, although somewhat controversial, body of literature suggests complex working memory training can sometimes lead to working memory improvements that transfer to novel working memory tasks. This study investigated whether working memory improvements, if replicated, would increase analogical reasoning ability. We assessed participants' performance on verbal and visual analogy tasks after a complex working memory training program incorporating verbal and spatial tasks. Participants' improvements on the working memory training tasks transferred to other short-term and working memory tasks, supporting the possibility of broad effects of working memory training. However, we found no effects on analogical reasoning. We propose several possible explanations for the lack of an impact of working memory improvements on analogical reasoning.
Richey, J Elizabeth; Phillips, Jeffrey S; Schunn, Christian D; Schneider, Walter
Analogical reasoning has been hypothesized to critically depend upon working memory through correlational data, but less work has tested this relationship through experimental manipulation. An opportunity for examining the connection between working memory and analogical reasoning has emerged from the growing, although somewhat controversial, body of literature suggests complex working memory training can sometimes lead to working memory improvements that transfer to novel working memory tasks. This study investigated whether working memory improvements, if replicated, would increase analogical reasoning ability. We assessed participants' performance on verbal and visual analogy tasks after a complex working memory training program incorporating verbal and spatial tasks. Participants' improvements on the working memory training tasks transferred to other short-term and working memory tasks, supporting the possibility of broad effects of working memory training. However, we found no effects on analogical reasoning. We propose several possible explanations for the lack of an impact of working memory improvements on analogical reasoning.
Sligte, Ilja G; Vandenbroucke, Annelinde R E; Scholte, H Steven; Lamme, Victor A F
Visual short-term memory (VSTM) enables us to actively maintain information in mind for a brief period of time after stimulus disappearance. According to recent studies, VSTM consists of three stages - iconic memory, fragile VSTM, and visual working memory - with increasingly stricter capacity limits and progressively longer lifetimes. Still, the resolution (or amount of visual detail) of each VSTM stage has remained unexplored and we test this in the present study. We presented people with a change detection task that measures the capacity of all three forms of VSTM, and we added an identification display after each change trial that required people to identify the "pre-change" object. Accurate change detection plus pre-change identification requires subjects to have a high-resolution representation of the "pre-change" object, whereas change detection or identification only can be based on the hunch that something has changed, without exactly knowing what was presented before. We observed that people maintained 6.1 objects in iconic memory, 4.6 objects in fragile VSTM, and 2.1 objects in visual working memory. Moreover, when people detected the change, they could also identify the pre-change object on 88% of the iconic memory trials, on 71% of the fragile VSTM trials and merely on 53% of the visual working memory trials. This suggests that people maintain many high-resolution representations in iconic memory and fragile VSTM, but only one high-resolution object representation in visual working memory.
Trick, Lana M; Mutreja, Rachna; Hunt, Kelly
An individual-differences approach was used to investigate the roles of visuospatial working memory and the executive in multiple-object tracking. The Corsi Blocks and Visual Patterns Tests were used to assess visuospatial working memory. Two relatively nonspatial measures of the executive were used: operation span (OSPAN) and reading span (RSPAN). For purposes of comparison, the digit span test was also included (a measure not expected to correlate with tracking). The tests predicted substantial amounts of variance (R (2) = .33), and the visuospatial measures accounted for the majority (R (2) = .30), with each making a significant contribution. Although the executive measures correlated with each other, the RSPAN did not correlate with tracking. The correlation between OSPAN and tracking was similar in magnitude to that between digit span and tracking (p < .05 for both), and when regression was used to partial out shared variance between the two tests, the remaining variance predicted by the OSPAN was minimal (sr ( 2 ) = .029). When measures of spatial memory were included in the regression, the unique variance predicted by the OSPAN became negligible (sr ( 2 ) = .000004). This suggests that the executive, as measured by tests such as the OSPAN, plays little role in explaining individual differences in multiple-object tracking.
Ribeiro, Jéssica Alves; Marinho, Francisco Victor Costa; Rocha, Kaline; Magalhães, Francisco; Baptista, Abrahão Fontes; Velasques, Bruna; Ribeiro, Pedro; Cagy, Mauricio; Bastos, Victor Hugo; Gupta, Daya; Teixeira, Silmar
Spatial working memory has been extensively investigated with different tasks, treatments, and analysis tools. Several studies suggest that low frequency of the repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS) applied to the parietal cortex may influence spatial working memory (SWM). However, it is not yet known if after low-frequency rTMS applied to the superior parietal cortex, according to Pz electroencephalography (EEG) electrode, would change the orientation interpretation about the vertical and horizontal axes coordinates in an SWM task. The current study aims at filling this gap and obtains a better understanding of the low-frequency rTMS effect in SWM. In this crossover study, we select 20 healthy subjects in two conditions (control and 1-Hz rTMS). The subjects performed an SWM task with two random coordinates. Our results presented that low-frequency rTMS applied over the superior parietal cortex may influence the SWM to lead to a larger distance of axes interception point (p low-frequency rTMS over the superior parietal cortex (SPC) changes the SWM performance, and it has more predominance in horizontal axis.
Tanila, H; Mustonen, K; Sallinen, J; Scheinin, M; Riekkinen, P
The role of the alpha2C-adrenoceptor subtype in mediating the beneficial effect of alpha2-adrenoceptor agonists on spatial working memory was studied in adult mice with targeted inactivation of the alpha2C-receptor gene (KO) and their wild-type controls (WT). A delayed alternation task was run in a T-maze with mixed delays varying from 20 s to 120 s. Dexmedetomidine, a specific but subtype nonselective alpha2-adrenoceptor agonist, dose-dependently decreased the total number of errors. The effect was strongest at the dose of 5 microg/kg (s.c.), and was observed similarly in KO and WT mice. KO mice performed inferior to WT mice due to a higher number of perseverative errors. Dexmedetomidine slowed initiation of the motor response in the start phase at lower doses in WT mice than in KO mice but no such difference was observed in the return phase of the task, suggesting involvement of alpha2C-adrenoceptors in the cognitive aspect of response preparation or in response sequence initiation. According to these findings, enhancement of spatial working memory is best achieved with alpha2-adrenoceptor agonists which have neither agonistic nor antagonistic effects at the alpha2C-adrenoceptor subtype.
Pang, Kevin C H; Jiao, Xilu; Sinha, Swamini; Beck, Kevin D; Servatius, Richard J
The medial septum and diagonal band (MSDB) are important in spatial learning and memory. On the basis of the excitotoxic damage of GABAergic MSDB neurons, we have recently suggested a role for these neurons in controlling proactive interference. Our study sought to test this hypothesis in different behavioral procedures using a new GABAergic immunotoxin. GABA-transporter-saporin (GAT1-SAP) was administered into the MSDB of male Sprague-Dawley rats. Following surgery, rats were trained in a reference memory water maze procedure for 5 days, followed by a working memory (delayed match to position) water maze procedure. Other rats were trained in a lever-press avoidance procedure after intraseptal GAT1-SAP or sham surgery. Intraseptal GAT1-SAP extensively damaged GABAergic neurons while sparing most cholinergic MSDB neurons. Rats treated with GAT1-SAP were not impaired in acquiring a spatial reference memory, learning the location of the escape platform as rapidly as sham rats. In contrast, GAT1-SAP rats were slower than sham rats to learn the platform location in a delayed match to position procedure, in which the platform location was changed every day. Moreover, GAT1-SAP rats returned to previous platform locations more often than sham rats. In the active avoidance procedure, intraseptal GAT1-SAP impaired extinction but not acquisition of the avoidance response. Using a different neurotoxin and behavioral procedures than previous studies, the results of this study paint a similar picture that GABAergic MSDB neurons are important for controlling proactive interference. Copyright © 2010 Wiley-Liss, Inc.
Sligte, Ilja G.; Vandenbroucke, Annelinde R. E.; Scholte, H. Steven; Lamme, Victor A. F.
Visual short-term memory (VSTM) enables us to actively maintain information in mind for a brief period of time after stimulus disappearance. According to recent studies, VSTM consists of three stages - iconic memory, fragile VSTM, and visual working memory - with increasingly stricter capacity limits and progressively longer lifetimes. Still, the resolution (or amount of visual detail) of each VSTM stage has remained unexplored and we test this in the present study. We presented people with a...
Girard, Todd A; Wilkins, Leanne K; Lyons, Kathleen M; Yang, Lixia; Christensen, Bruce K
Introduction Working-memory (WM) is a core cognitive deficit among individuals with Schizophrenia Spectrum Disorders (SSD). However, the underlying cognitive mechanisms of this deficit are less known. This study applies a modified version of the Corsi Block Test to investigate the role of proactive interference in visuospatial WM (VSWM) impairment in SSD. Methods Healthy and SSD participants completed a modified version of the Corsi Block Test involving both high (typical ascending set size from 4 to 7 items) and low (descending set size from 7 to 4 items) proactive interference conditions. Results The results confirmed that the SSD group performed worse overall relative to a healthy comparison group. More importantly, the SSD group demonstrated greater VSWM scores under low (Descending) versus high (Ascending) proactive interference; this pattern is opposite to that of healthy participants. Conclusions This differential pattern of performance supports that proactive interference associated with the traditional administration format contributes to VSWM impairment in SSD. Further research investigating associated neurocognitive mechanisms and the contribution of proactive interference across other domains of cognition in SSD is warranted.
Potagas, Constantin; Kasselimis, Dimitrios; Evdokimidis, Ioannis
The aim of the present study is to investigate short-term memory and working memory deficits in aphasics in relation to the severity of their language impairment. Fifty-eight aphasic patients participated in this study. Based on language assessment, an aphasia score was calculated for each patient. Memory was assessed in two modalities, verbal and spatial. Mean scores for all memory tasks were lower than normal. Aphasia score was significantly correlated with performance on all memory tasks. Correlation coefficients for short-term memory and working memory were approximately of the same magnitude. According to our findings, severity of aphasia is related with both verbal and spatial memory deficits. Moreover, while aphasia score correlated with lower scores in both short-term memory and working memory tasks, the lack of substantial difference between corresponding correlation coefficients suggests a possible primary deficit in information retention rather than impairment in working memory. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Del Gatto, Claudia; Brunetti, Riccardo; Delogu, Franco
In this study we tested incidental feature-to-location binding in a spatial task, both in unimodal and cross-modal conditions. In Experiment 1 we administered a computerised version of the Corsi Block-Tapping Task (CBTT) in three different conditions: the first one analogous to the original CBTT test; the second one in which locations were associated with unfamiliar images; the third one in which locations were associated with non-verbal sounds. Results showed no effect on performance by the addition of identity information. In Experiment 2, locations on the screen were associated with pitched sounds in two different conditions: one in which different pitches were randomly associated with locations and the other in which pitches were assigned to match the vertical position of the CBTT squares congruently with their frequencies. In Experiment 2 we found marginal evidence of a pitch facilitation effect in the spatial memory task. We ran a third experiment to test the same conditions of Experiment 2 with a within-subject design. Results of Experiment 3 did not confirm the pitch-location facilitation effect. We concluded that the identity of objects does not affect recalling their locations. We discuss our results within the framework of the debate about the mechanisms of "what" and "where" feature binding in working memory.
Full Text Available Blind individuals have been shown on multiple occasions to compensate for their loss of sight by developing exceptional abilities in their remaining senses. While most research has been focused on perceptual abilities per se in the auditory and tactile modalities, recent work has also investigated higher-order processes involving memory and language functions. Here we examined tactile working memory for Braille in two groups of visually challenged individuals (completely blind subjects, CBS; blind with residual vision, BRV. In a first experimental procedure both groups were given a Braille tactile memory span task with and without articulatory suppression, while the BRV and a sighted group performed a visual version of the task. It was shown that the Braille tactile working memory (BrWM of CBS individuals under articulatory suppression is as efficient as that of sighted individuals' visual working memory in the same condition. Moreover, the results suggest that BrWM may be more robust in the CBS than in the BRV subjects, thus pointing to the potential role of visual experience in shaping tactile working memory. A second experiment designed to assess the nature (spatial vs. verbal of this working memory was then carried out with two new CBS and BRV groups having to perform the Braille task concurrently with a mental arithmetic task or a mental displacement of blocks task. We show that the disruption of memory was greatest when concurrently carrying out the mental displacement of blocks, indicating that the Braille tactile subsystem of working memory is likely spatial in nature in CBS. The results also point to the multimodal nature of working memory and show how experience can shape the development of its subcomponents.
Cohen, Henri; Voss, Patrice; Lepore, Franco; Scherzer, Peter
Blind individuals have been shown on multiple occasions to compensate for their loss of sight by developing exceptional abilities in their remaining senses. While most research has been focused on perceptual abilities per se in the auditory and tactile modalities, recent work has also investigated higher-order processes involving memory and language functions. Here we examined tactile working memory for Braille in two groups of visually challenged individuals (completely blind subjects, CBS; blind with residual vision, BRV). In a first experimental procedure both groups were given a Braille tactile memory span task with and without articulatory suppression, while the BRV and a sighted group performed a visual version of the task. It was shown that the Braille tactile working memory (BrWM) of CBS individuals under articulatory suppression is as efficient as that of sighted individuals' visual working memory in the same condition. Moreover, the results suggest that BrWM may be more robust in the CBS than in the BRV subjects, thus pointing to the potential role of visual experience in shaping tactile working memory. A second experiment designed to assess the nature (spatial vs. verbal) of this working memory was then carried out with two new CBS and BRV groups having to perform the Braille task concurrently with a mental arithmetic task or a mental displacement of blocks task. We show that the disruption of memory was greatest when concurrently carrying out the mental displacement of blocks, indicating that the Braille tactile subsystem of working memory is likely spatial in nature in CBS. The results also point to the multimodal nature of working memory and show how experience can shape the development of its subcomponents.
Jutta S. Mayer
Full Text Available Even though extensively investigated, the nature of working memory (WM deficits in patients with schizophrenia (PSZ is not yet fully understood. In particular, the contribution of different WM sub-processes to the severe WM deficit observed in PSZ is a matter of debate. So far, most research has focused on impaired WM maintenance. By analyzing different types of errors in a spatial delayed response task (DRT, we have recently demonstrated that incorrect yet confident responses (which we labeled as false memory errors rather than incorrect/not-confident responses reflect failures of WM encoding, which was also impaired in PSZ. In the present study, we provide further evidence for a functional dissociation between confident and not-confident errors by manipulating the demands on WM maintenance, i.e., the length over which information has to be maintained in WM. Furthermore, we investigate whether these functionally distinguishable WM processes are impaired in PSZ. Twenty-four PSZ and 24 demographically matched healthy controls (HC performed a spatial DRT in which the length of the delay period was varied between 1, 2, 4, and 6 s. In each trial, participants also rated their level of response confidence. Across both groups, longer delays led to increased rates of incorrect/not-confident responses, while incorrect/confident responses were not affected by delay length. This functional dissociation provides additional support for our proposal that false memory errors (i.e., confident errors reflect problems at the level of WM encoding, while not-confident errors reflect failures of WM maintenance. Schizophrenic patients showed increased numbers of both confident and not-confident errors, suggesting that both sub-processes of WM—encoding and maintenance—are impaired in schizophrenia. Combined with the delay length-dependent functional dissociation, we propose that these impairments in schizophrenic patients are functionally distinguishable.
Yogesh D Aher
Full Text Available Various psychostimulants targeting monoamine neurotransmitter transporters (MAT have been shown to rescue cognition in patients with neurological disorders and improve cognitive abilities in healthy subjects at low doses. Here, we examined the effects upon cognition of a chemically synthetized novel MAT inhibiting compound 2-(benzhydrylsulfinylmethyl-4-methylthiazole (named as CE-104. The efficacy of CE-104 in blocking MAT (DAT – dopamine transporter, SERT – serotonin transporter and NET – norepinephrine transporter was determined using in vitro neurotransmitter uptake assay. The effect of the drug at low doses (1 and 10mg/kg on spatial memory was studied in male rats in the radial arm maze (RAM. Furthermore, the dopamine receptor and transporter complex levels of frontal cortex (FC tissue of trained and untrained animals treated either with the drug or vehicle were quantified on blue native PAGE (BN-PAGE. The drug inhibited dopamine (IC50: 27.88µM and norepinephrine uptake (IC50: 160.40µM, but had a negligible effect on SERT. In the RAM, both drug-dose groups improved spatial working memory during the performance phase of RAM as compared to vehicle. BN-PAGE western blot quantification of dopamine receptor and transporter complexes revealed that D1, D2, D3 and DAT complexes were modulated due to training and by drug effects. The drug’s ability to block DAT and its influence on dopamine transporter and receptor complex levels in the FC is proposed as a possible mechanism for the observed learning and memory enhancement in the RAM.
Ilja G Sligte
Full Text Available Visual short-term memory (VSTM enables us to actively maintain information in mind for a brief period of time after stimulus disappearance. According to recent studies, VSTM consists of three stages - iconic memory, fragile VSTM, and visual working memory - with increasingly stricter capacity limits and progressively longer lifetimes. Still, the resolution (or amount of visual detail of each VSTM stage has remained unexplored and we test this in the present study. We presented people with a change detection task that measures the capacity of all three forms of VSTM, and we added an identification display after each change trial that required people to identify the pre-change object. Accurate change detection plus pre-change identification requires subjects to have a high-resolution representation of the pre-change object, whereas change detection or identification only can be based on the hunch that something has changed, without exactly knowing what was presented before. We observed that people maintained 6.1 objects in iconic memory, 4.6 objects in fragile VSTM and 2.1 objects in visual working memory. Moreover, when people detected the change, they could also identify the pre-change object on 88 percent of the iconic memory trials, on 71 percent of the fragile VSTM trials and merely on 53 percent of the visual working memory trials. This suggests that people maintain many high-resolution representations in iconic memory and fragile VSTM, but only one high-resolution object representation in visual working memory.
Lum, Jarrad A.G.; Conti-Ramsden, Gina; Page, Debra; Ullman, Michael T.
According to the Procedural Deficit Hypothesis (PDH), abnormalities of brain structures underlying procedural memory largely explain the language deficits in children with specific language impairment (SLI). These abnormalities are posited to result in core deficits of procedural memory, which in turn explain the grammar problems in the disorder. The abnormalities are also likely to lead to problems with other, non-procedural functions, such as working memory, that rely at least partly on the affected brain structures. In contrast, declarative memory is expected to remain largely intact, and should play an important compensatory role for grammar. These claims were tested by examining measures of working, declarative and procedural memory in 51 children with SLI and 51 matched typically-developing (TD) children (mean age 10). Working memory was assessed with the Working Memory Test Battery for Children, declarative memory with the Children’s Memory Scale, and procedural memory with a visuo-spatial Serial Reaction Time task. As compared to the TD children, the children with SLI were impaired at procedural memory, even when holding working memory constant. In contrast, they were spared at declarative memory for visual information, and at declarative memory in the verbal domain after controlling for working memory and language. Visuo-spatial short-term memory was intact, whereas verbal working memory was impaired, even when language deficits were held constant. Correlation analyses showed neither visuo-spatial nor verbal working memory was associated with either lexical or grammatical abilities in either the SLI or TD children. Declarative memory correlated with lexical abilities in both groups of children. Finally, grammatical abilities were associated with procedural memory in the TD children, but with declarative memory in the children with SLI. These findings replicate and extend previous studies of working, declarative and procedural memory in SLI. Overall, we
Hochberger, William C; Axelrod, Jenna L; Sarapas, Casey; Shankman, Stewart A; Hill, S Kristian
Research suggests that increasing delays in stimulus read-out can trigger declines in serial order recall accuracy due to increases in cognitive demand imposed by the delay; however, the exact neural mechanisms associated with this decline are unclear. Changes in neural resource allocation present as the ideal target and can easily be monitored by examining changes in the amplitude of an ERP component known as the P3. Changes in P3 amplitude secondary to exogenous pacing of stimulus read-out via increased target-to-target intervals (TTI) during recall could reflect decreased neural resource allocation due to increased cognitive demand. This shift in resource allocation could result in working memory storage decay and the declines in serial order accuracy described by prior research. In order to examine this potential effect, participants were administered a spatial serial order processing task, with the recall series consisting of a series of correct ("match") or incorrect ("non-match" or "oddball") stimuli. Moreover, the recall series included either a brief (500ms) or extended (2000ms) delay between stimuli. Results were significant for the presence of a P3 response to non-match stimuli for both experimental conditions, and attenuation of P3 amplitude secondary to the increase in target-to-target interval (TTI). These findings suggest that extending the delay between target recognition could increase cognitive demand and trigger a decrease in neural resource allocation that results in a decay of working memory stores.
Sophie Helene Richter
Full Text Available Disturbances in cognitive functioning are among the most debilitating problems experienced by patients with major depression. Investigations of these deficits in animals help to extend and refine our understanding of human emotional disorder, while at the same time providing valid tools to study higher executive functions in animals. We employ the "learned helplessness" genetic rat model of depression in studying working memory using an eight arm radial maze procedure with temporal delay. This so-called delayed spatial win-shift task consists of three phases, training, delay and test, requiring rats to hold information on-line across a retention interval and making choices based on this information in the test phase. According to a 2×2 factorial design, working memory performance of thirty-one congenitally helpless (cLH and non-helpless (cNLH rats was tested on eighteen trials, additionally imposing two different delay durations, 30 s and 15 min, respectively. While not observing a general cognitive deficit in cLH rats, the delay length greatly influenced maze performance. Notably, performance was most impaired in cLH rats tested with the shorter 30 s delay, suggesting a stress-related disruption of attentional processes in rats that are more sensitive to stress. Our study provides direct animal homologues of clinically important measures in human research, and contributes to the non-invasive assessment of cognitive deficits associated with depression.
Working memory is a cognitive construct underlying a number of abilities, and it has been hypothesised for many years that it is crucial for interpreting. A number of studies have been conducted with the aim to support this hypothesis, but research has not yielded convincing results. Most researchers focused on studying working memory differences between interpreters and non-interpreters with the rationale that differences in working memory between the two groups would provide evidence of wor...
Hensbroek, R.A.; Kamal, A.; Baars, A.M.; Verhage, M.; Spruijt, B.M.
The mossy fibers of the hippocampus display NMDA-receptor independent long-term plasticity. A number of studies addressed the role of mossy fiber long-term plasticity in memory, but have provided contrasting results. Here, we have exploited a genetic model, the rab3A null-mutant, which is
Lineweaver, Tara T; Kercood, Suneeta; O'Keeffe, Nicole B; O'Brien, Kathleen M; Massey, Eric J; Campbell, Samantha J; Pierce, Jenna N
Two studies addressed how young adult college students with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) (n = 44) compare to their nonaffected peers (n = 42) on tests of auditory and visual-spatial working memory (WM), are vulnerable to auditory and visual distractions, and are affected by a simple intervention. Students with ADHD demonstrated worse auditory WM than did controls. A near significant trend indicated that auditory distractions interfered with the visual WM of both groups and that, whereas controls were also vulnerable to visual distractions, visual distractions improved visual WM in the ADHD group. The intervention was ineffective. Limited correlations emerged between self-reported ADHD symptoms and objective test performances; students with ADHD who perceived themselves as more symptomatic often had better WM and were less vulnerable to distractions than their ADHD peers.
Ma, Wei Ji; Husain, Masud; Bays, Paul M
Working memory is widely considered to be limited in capacity, holding a fixed, small number of items, such as Miller's ‘magical number’ seven or Cowan's four. It has recently been proposed that working memory might better be conceptualized as a limited resource that is distributed flexibly among all items to be maintained in memory. According to this view, the quality rather than the quantity of working memory representations determines performance. Here we consider behavioral and emerging neural evidence for this proposal. PMID:24569831
Malisza Krisztina L
and number of fibers than the ARND group. These measures were negatively correlated with errors on the 1-back task, suggesting a link between white matter integrity and task performance. Conclusions fMRI activations suggest that the similar behavior of children with ARND and ADHD on a spatial working memory task is the result of different cognitive events. The nature of ADHD in children with ARND appears to differ from that of children with ADHD alone.
Galeano, Pablo; Blanco, Eduardo; Logica Tornatore, Tamara M A; Romero, Juan I; Holubiec, Mariana I; Rodríguez de Fonseca, Fernando; Capani, Francisco
Continuous environmental stimulation induced by exposure to enriched environment (EE) has yielded cognitive benefits in different models of brain injury. Perinatal asphyxia results from a lack of oxygen supply to the fetus and is associated with long-lasting neurological deficits. However, the effects of EE in middle-aged rats suffering perinatal asphyxia are unknown. Therefore, the aim of the present study was to assess whether life-long exposure to EE could counteract the cognitive and behavioral alterations in middle-aged asphyctic rats. Experimental groups consisted of rats born vaginally (CTL), by cesarean section (C+), or by C+ following 19 min of asphyxia at birth (PA). At weaning, rats were assigned to standard (SE) or enriched environment (EE) for 18 months. During the last month of housing, animals were submitted to a behavioral test battery including Elevated Plus Maze, Open Field, Novel Object Recognition and Morris water maze (MWM). Results showed that middle-aged asphyctic rats, reared in SE, exhibited an impaired performance in the spatial reference and working memory versions of the MWM. EE was able to counteract these cognitive impairments. Moreover, EE improved the spatial learning performance of middle-aged CTL and C+ rats. On the other hand, all groups reared in SE did not differ in locomotor activity and anxiety levels, while EE reduced locomotion and anxiety, regardless of birth condition. Recognition memory was altered neither by birth condition nor by housing environment. These results support the importance of environmental stimulation across the lifespan to prevent cognitive deficits induced by perinatal asphyxia.
李腾飞; 马楠; 胡中华; 刘强
以往研究发现,个体对不同类型的视觉信息进行视觉工作记忆巩固的模式存在差异,如对于方向信息,一次只能有一个项目被巩固进入视觉工作记忆系统,而对于颜色信息,个体则可以一次巩固两个项目进入视觉工作记忆系统.但对于视觉信息的巩固模式是否会受其他因素的影响,目前仍然没有明确的定论.本研究将探讨视觉信息的巩固模式是否可能受到记忆项目空间距离因素的影响.研究采用变化觉察范式、序列-同时呈现操作及控制记忆项目呈现间距的方法,通过3个实验考察记忆项目之间的空间距离是否能够影响个体对颜色信息和方向信息的巩固模式.在三种空间距离水平上序列呈现或同时呈现两个记忆项目,实验结果一致发现记忆项目之间的空间距离会对视觉工作记忆巩固模式产生明显影响,个体在同时呈现条件下的正确率会随着空间距离的增大而降低.这些结果表明对同一类视觉信息进行巩固的过程中所存在的项目数量限制并不是固定的,个体可以采用序列模式或有限容量的并行模式对同一类信息进行巩固,巩固的模式可能与视觉空间注意的分配以及视觉信息所能获得的注意资源有关.%During past years,visual working memory (VWM) consolidation has been studied extensively.Consolidation of visual information into VWM is widely considered to occur with capacity limit.Previous studies have demonstrated that two colors could be consolidated in parallel and two oriented gratings could be consolidated only in serial.Some researchers provided a bandwidth hypothesis for these results:because of the difference between the informational demands for color and for oriented grating,two colors could be consolidated in parallel without exceeding the bandwidth limit,whereas two oriented gratings could only be consolidated in serial because of exceeding the bandwidth limit.But other
Bredemeier, Keith; Simons, Daniel J
Individual differences in working memory predict many aspects of cognitive performance, especially for tasks that demand focused attention. One negative consequence of focused attention is inattentional blindness, the failure to notice unexpected objects when attention is engaged elsewhere. Yet, the relationship between individual differences in working memory and inattentional blindness is unclear; some studies have found that higher working memory capacity is associated with greater noticing, but others have found no direct association. Given the theoretical and practical significance of such individual differences, more definitive tests are needed. In two studies with large samples, we tested the relationship between multiple working memory measures and inattentional blindness. Individual differences in working memory predicted the ability to perform an attention-demanding tracking task, but did not predict the likelihood of noticing an unexpected object present during the task. We discuss the reasons why we might not expect such individual differences in noticing and why other studies may have found them.
Smith, Amanda L; Alexander, Michelle; Chrobak, James J; Rosenkrantz, Ted S; Fitch, R Holly
Infants born prematurely are at risk for cardiovascular events causing hypoxia-ischemia (HI; reduced blood and oxygen to the brain). HI in turn can cause neuropathology, though patterns of damage are sometimes diffuse and often highly variable (with clinical heterogeneity further magnified by rapid development). As a result, though HI injury is associated with long-term behavioral and cognitive impairments in general, pathology indices for specific infants can provide only limited insight into individual prognosis. The current paper addresses this important clinical issue using a rat model that simulates unilateral HI in a late preterm infant coupled with long-term behavioral evaluation in two processing domains - auditory discrimination and spatial learning/memory. We examined the following: (1) whether deficits on one task would predict deficits on the other (suggesting that subjects with more severe injury perform worse across all cognitive domains) or (2) whether domain-specific outcomes among HI-injured subjects would be uncorrelated (suggesting differential damage to orthogonal neural systems). All animals (sham and HI) received initial auditory testing and were assigned to additional auditory testing (group A) or spatial maze testing (group B). This allowed within-task (group A) and between-task (group B) correlation. Anatomic measures of cortical, hippocampal and ventricular volume (indexing HI damage) were also obtained and correlated against behavioral measures. Results showed that auditory discrimination in the juvenile period was not correlated with spatial working memory in adulthood (group B) in either sham or HI rats. Conversely, early auditory processing performance for group A HI animals significantly predicted auditory deficits in adulthood (p = 0.05; no correlation in shams). Anatomic data also revealed significant relationships between the volumes of different brain areas within both HI and shams, but anatomic measures did not correlate with any
Alekseichuk, Ivan; Pabel, Stefanie Corinna; Antal, Andrea; Paulus, Walter
There is a growing interest in large-scale connectivity as one of the crucial factors in working memory. Correlative evidence has revealed the anatomical and electrophysiological players in the working memory network, but understanding of the effective role of their connectivity remains elusive. In this double-blind, placebo-controlled study we aimed to identify the causal role of theta phase connectivity in visual-spatial working memory. The frontoparietal network was over- or de-synchronized in the anterior-posterior direction by multi-electrode, 6 Hz transcranial alternating current stimulation (tACS). A decrease in memory performance and increase in reaction time was caused by frontoparietal intrahemispheric desynchronization. According to the diffusion drift model, this originated in a lower signal-to-noise ratio, known as the drift rate index, in the memory system. The EEG analysis revealed a corresponding decrease in phase connectivity between prefrontal and parietal areas after tACS-driven desynchronization. The over-synchronization did not result in any changes in either the behavioral or electrophysiological levels in healthy participants. Taken together, we demonstrate the feasibility of manipulating multi-site large-scale networks in humans, and the disruptive effect of frontoparietal desynchronization on theta phase connectivity and visual-spatial working memory.
This article introduces the concept of a multi-component working memory. Emphasis is placed on the phonological loop component, its fractionation into a storage and processing component, and implications for native and second language learning. An overview of the visual spatial sketchpad and its possible role in language is provided. (Contains…
Burke, MR; Allen, RJ; Gonzalez, C
© 2012 a Pion publication Recent behavioural and biological evidence indicates common mechanisms serving working memory and attention (e.g., Awh et al, 2006 Neuroscience 139 201-208). This study explored the role of spatial attention and visual search in an adapted Corsi spatial memory task. Eye movements and touch responses were recorded from participants who recalled locations (signalled by colour or shape change) from an array presented either simultaneously or sequentially. The time de...
Melanie Rose Burke; Richard Allen; Matilda Webster; Claudia Gonzalez
Recent behavioural and biological evidence indicates common mechanisms serving working memory and attention (eg, Awh et al 2006, Trends in Cognitive Sciences 10, 124–130). This study explored the role of spatial attention and visual search in an adapted Corsi spatial memory task. Eye movements and touch responses were recorded from participants who recalled locations (signalled by colour or shape change) from an array presented either simultaneously or sequentially. The time delay between tar...
Kent, Phillip L
The purpose of this paper is to provide a selective overview of the evolution of the concept and assessment of working memory, and how its assessment has been confused with the assessment of some components of attention. A literature search using PsychNet Gold was conducted using the terms working memory. In addition, the writer reviewed recommendations from a sampling of recent neuropsychology texts in regard to the assessment of attention and working memory, as well as the two most recent editions of the Wechsler Memory Scale. It is argued that many clinicians have an incomplete understanding of the relationship between attention and working memory, and often conflate the two in assessment and treatment. Suggestions were made for assessing these abilities.
Allen, Richard J; Schaefer, Alexandre; Falcon, Thomas
The present article reports two experiments examining the impact of recollecting emotionally valenced autobiographical memories on subsequent working memory (WM) task performance. Experiment 1 found that negatively valenced recollection significantly disrupted performance on a supra-span spatial WM task. Experiment 2 replicated and extended these findings to a verbal WM task (digit recall), and found that both negative and positive autobiographical recollections had a detrimental effect on verbal WM. In addition, we observed that these disruptive effects were more apparent on early trials, immediately following autobiographical recollection. Overall, these findings show that both positive and negative affect can disrupt WM when the mood-eliciting context is based on autobiographical memories. Furthermore, these results indicate that the emotional disruption of WM can take place across different modalities of WM (verbal and visuo-spatial). Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Full Text Available The dentate gyrus of the hippocampus is one of the few regions of the mammalian brain where new neurons are generated throughout adulthood. This adult neurogenesis has been proposed as a novel mechanism that mediates spatial memory. However, data showing a causal relationship between neurogenesis and spatial memory are controversial. Here, we developed an inducible transgenic strategy allowing specific ablation of adult-born hippocampal neurons. This resulted in an impairment of spatial relational memory, which supports a capacity for flexible, inferential memory expression. In contrast, less complex forms of spatial knowledge were unaltered. These findings demonstrate that adult-born neurons are necessary for complex forms of hippocampus-mediated learning.
Braren, Stephen H; Drapala, Damian; Tulloch, Ingrid K; Serrano, Peter A
Methamphetamine (MA) is a toxic, addictive drug shown to modulate learning and memory, yet the neural mechanisms are not fully understood. We investigated the effects of 2 weekly injections of MA (30 mg/kg) on working memory using the radial 8-arm maze (RAM) across 5 weeks in adolescent-age mice. MA-treated mice show a significant improvement in working memory performance 1 week following the first MA injection compared to saline-injected controls. Following 5 weeks of MA abstinence mice were re-trained on a reference and working memory version of the RAM to assess cognitive flexibility. MA-treated mice show significantly more working memory errors without effects on reference memory performance. The hippocampus and dorsal striatum were assessed for expression of glutamate receptors subunits, GluA2 and GluN2B; dopamine markers, dopamine 1 receptor (D1), dopamine transporter (DAT) and tyrosine hydroxylase (TH); and memory markers, protein kinase M zeta (PKMζ) and protein kinase C zeta (PKCζ). Within the hippocampus, PKMζ and GluA2 are both significantly reduced after MA supporting the poor memory performance. Additionally, a significant increase in GluN2B and decrease in D1 identifies dysregulated synaptic function. In the striatum, MA treatment increased cytosolic DAT and TH levels associated with dopamine hyperfunction. MA treatment significantly reduced GluN2B while increasing both PKMζ and PKCζ within the striatum. We discuss the potential role of PKMζ/PKCζ in modulating dopamine and glutamate receptors after MA treatment. These results identify potential underlying mechanisms for working memory deficits induced by MA.
Stephen H Braren
Full Text Available Methamphetamine (MA is a toxic, addictive drug shown to modulate learning and memory, yet the neural mechanisms are not fully understood. We investigated the effects of 2 weekly injections of MA (30 mg/kg on working memory using the radial 8-arm maze (RAM across 5 weeks in adolescent-age mice. MA-treated mice show a significant improvement in working memory performance 1 week following the first MA injection compared to saline-injected controls. Following 5 weeks of MA abstinence mice were re-trained on a reference and working memory version of the RAM to assess cognitive flexibility. MA-treated mice show significantly more working memory errors without effects on reference memory performance. The hippocampus and dorsal striatum were assessed for expression of glutamate receptors subunits, GluA2 and GluN2B; dopamine markers, dopamine 1 receptor (D1, dopamine transporter (DAT and tyrosine hydroxylase (TH; and memory markers, protein kinase M zeta (PKMζ and protein kinase C zeta (PKCζ. Within the hippocampus, PKMζ and GluA2 are both significantly reduced after MA supporting the poor memory performance. Additionally, a significant increase in GluN2B and decrease in D1 identifies dysregulated synaptic function. In the striatum, MA treatment increased cytosolic DAT and TH levels associated with dopamine hyperfunction. MA treatment significantly reduced GluN2B while increasing both PKMζ and PKCζ within the striatum. We discuss the potential role of PKMζ/PKCζ in modulating dopamine and glutamate receptors after MA treatment. These results identify potential underlying mechanisms for working memory deficits induced by MA.
De Lillo, Carlo; Kirby, Melissa; James, Frances C
Search and serial recall tasks were used in the present study to characterize the factors affecting the ability of humans to keep track of a set of spatial locations while traveling in an immersive virtual reality foraging environment. The first experiment required the exhaustive exploration of a set of locations following a procedure previously used with other primate and non-primate species to assess their sensitivity to the geometric arrangement of foraging sites. The second experiment assessed the dependency of search performance on search organization by requiring the participants to recall specific trajectories throughout the foraging space. In the third experiment, the distance between the foraging sites was manipulated in order to contrast the effects of organization and traveling distance on recall accuracy. The results show that humans benefit from the use of organized search patterns when attempting to monitor their travel though either a clustered "patchy" space or a matrix of locations. Their ability to recall a series of locations is dependent on whether the order in which they are explored conformed or did not conform to specific organization principles. Moreover, the relationship between search efficiency and search organization is not confounded by effects of traveling distance. These results indicate that in humans, organizational factors may play a large role in their ability to forage efficiently. The extent to which such dependency may pertain to other primates and could be accounted for by visual organization processes is discussed on the basis of previous studies focused on perceptual grouping, search, and serial recall in non-human species. © 2013 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
Kang, Min-Suk; Hong, Sang Wook; Blake, Randolph; Woodman, Geoffrey F
Indirect evidence suggests that the contents of visual working memory may be maintained within sensory areas early in the visual hierarchy. We tested this possibility using a well-studied motion repulsion phenomenon in which perception of one direction of motion is distorted when another direction of motion is viewed simultaneously. We found that observers misperceived the actual direction of motion of a single motion stimulus if, while viewing that stimulus, they were holding a different motion direction in visual working memory. Control experiments showed that none of a variety of alternative explanations could account for this repulsion effect induced by working memory. Our findings provide compelling evidence that visual working memory representations directly interact with the same neural mechanisms as those involved in processing basic sensory events.
Sahu, Aparna; Christman, Stephen D; Propper, Ruth E
Past studies have independently shown associations of working memory and degree of handedness with episodic memory retrieval. The current study takes a step ahead by examining whether handedness and working memory independently predict episodic memory. In agreement with past studies, there was an inconsistent-handed advantage for episodic memory; however, this advantage was absent for working memory tasks. Furthermore, regression analyses showed handedness, and complex working memory predicted episodic memory performance at different times. Results are discussed in light of theories of episodic memory and hemispheric interaction.
Terry, A V; Warner, S E; Vandenhuerk, L; Pillai, A; Mahadik, S P; Zhang, G; Bartlett, M G
Learning potential and memory capacity are factors that strongly predict the level of rehabilitation and the long-term functional outcome in patients with schizophrenia. Unfortunately, however, the effects of antipsychotic drugs (i.e. the primary treatments for schizophrenia) on these components of cognition are unclear, particularly when they are administered chronically (i.e. a standard clinical practice). In this rodent study we evaluated the effects of different time periods (ranging from 2 weeks to 6 months) of oral treatment with the first generation antipsychotic chlorpromazine (10.0 mg/kg/day), or the second generation antipsychotic olanzapine (10.0 mg/kg/day) on the repeated acquisition of a water maze task (i.e. a method of assessing spatial learning potential in a repeated testing format). We assessed locomotor function (in an open field) and employed a radial arm maze (RAM) task to assess antipsychotic effects (5.0 and 10.0 mg/kg/day doses) on spatial working memory during the treatment period between 15 days and 2 months. Finally, we conducted experiments using liquid chromatography/tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS) to evaluate the therapeutic relevance of our method of drug delivery (oral administration in drinking water). In the water maze experiments, both antipsychotics were associated with impairments in acquisition in the earlier test sessions that could eventually be overcome with repeated testing while olanzapine also impaired retention in probe trials. Both antipsychotics were also associated with impairments in delayed non-match-to-position trials in the RAM and some impairments of motor function (especially in the case of olanzapine) as indicated by slightly reduced swim speeds in the water maze and decreased activity in some components of the open field assessment. Finally, LC-MS/MS studies indicated that the method of antipsychotic administration generated clinically relevant plasma levels in the rat. These animal data indicate that
Burnham, Bryan R; Sabia, Matthew; Langan, Catherine
Load theory (Lavie, N., Hirst, A., De Fockert, J. W., & Viding, E. . Load theory of selective attention and cognitive control. Journal of Experimental Psychology: General, 133, 339-354.) proposes that control of attention depends on the amount and type of load that is imposed by current processing. Specifically, perceptual load should lead to efficient distractor rejection, whereas working memory load (dual-task coordination) should hinder distractor rejection. Studies support load theory's prediction that working memory load will lead to larger distractor effects; however, these studies used secondary tasks that required only verbal working memory and the central executive. The present study examined which other working memory components (visual, spatial, and phonological) influence visual selective attention. Subjects completed an attentional capture task alone (single-task) or while engaged in a working memory task (dual-task). Results showed that along with the central executive, visual and spatial working memory influenced selective attention, but phonological working memory did not. Specifically, attentional capture was larger when visual or spatial working memory was loaded, but phonological working memory load did not affect attentional capture. The results are consistent with load theory and suggest specific components of working memory influence visual selective attention. PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved.
Baddeley, A; Jarrold, C
A brief account is given of the evolution of the concept of working memory from a unitary store into a multicomponent system. Four components are distinguished, the phonological loop which is responsible for maintaining speech-based information, the visuospatial sketchpad performing a similar function for visual information, the central executive which acts as an attentional control system, and finally a new component, the episodic buffer. The buffer comprises a temporary multidimensional store which is assumed to form an interface between the various subsystems of working memory, long-term memory, and perception. The operation of the model is then illustrated through an account of a research programme concerned with the analysis of working memory in Down syndrome.
Smith, Andrew P
Research has shown that extraverts performing a working memory task benefit more from caffeine than do introverts. The present study aimed to replicate this and extend our knowledge by using a lower dose of caffeine (65 mg) and a range of tasks related to different components of working memory. In addition, tasks assessing psychomotor speed and the encoding of new information were included to determine whether caffeine-extraversion interactions were restricted to working memory tasks. A double-blind design was used, with 128 participants being randomly assigned to caffeinated or de-caffeinated coffee conditions. The results showed that caffeine interacted with extraversion in the predicted direction for serial recall and running memory tasks. Caffeine improved simple reaction time and the speed of encoding of new information, effects which were not modified by extraversion. These results suggest possible biological mechanisms underlying effects of caffeine on cognitive performance.
Full Text Available The paper studies whether visuospatial working memory (VSWM and, specifically, recall of sequential-spatial information, can be improved by metacognitive training. Twenty-two fourth-grade children were involved in seven sessions of sequential-spatial memory training, while twenty-four children attended lessons given by their teacher. The posttraining evaluation demonstrated a specific improvement of performances in the Corsi blocks task, considered a sequential-spatial working memory task. However, no benefits of training were observed in either a verbal working memory task or a simultaneous-spatial working memory task. The results have important theoretical implications, in the study of VSWM components, and educational implications, in catering for children with specific VSWM impairments.
The prefrontal cortex participates in a variety of higher cognitive functions. The concept of working memory is now widely used to understand prefrontal functions. Neurophysiological studies have revealed that stimulus-selective delay-period activity is a neural correlate of the mechanism for temporarily maintaining information in working memory processes. The central executive, which is the master component of Baddeley’s working memory model and is thought to be a function of the prefrontal cortex, controls the performance of other components by allocating a limited capacity of memory resource to each component based on its demand. Recent neurophysiological studies have attempted to reveal how prefrontal neurons achieve the functions of the central executive. For example, the neural mechanisms of memory control have been examined using the interference effect in a dual-task paradigm. It has been shown that this interference effect is caused by the competitive and overloaded recruitment of overlapping neural populations in the prefrontal cortex by two concurrent tasks and that the information-processing capacity of a single neuron is limited to a fixed level, can be flexibly allocated or reallocated between two concurrent tasks based on their needs, and enhances behavioral performance when its allocation to one task is increased. Further, a metamemory task requiring spatial information has been used to understand the neural mechanism for monitoring its own operations, and it has been shown that monitoring the quality of spatial information represented by prefrontal activity is an important factor in the subject's choice and that the strength of spatially selective delay-period activity reflects confidence in decision-making. Although further studies are needed to elucidate how the prefrontal cortex controls memory resource and supervises other systems, some important mechanisms related to the central executive have been identified. PMID:28448453
Errors on interrupter tasks presented during spatial and verbal working memory performance are linearly linked to large-scale functional network connectivity in high temporal resolution resting state fMRI.
Magnuson, Matthew Evan; Thompson, Garth John; Schwarb, Hillary; Pan, Wen-Ju; McKinley, Andy; Schumacher, Eric H; Keilholz, Shella Dawn
The brain is organized into networks composed of spatially separated anatomical regions exhibiting coherent functional activity over time. Two of these networks (the default mode network, DMN, and the task positive network, TPN) have been implicated in the performance of a number of cognitive tasks. To directly examine the stable relationship between network connectivity and behavioral performance, high temporal resolution functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) data were collected during the resting state, and behavioral data were collected from 15 subjects on different days, exploring verbal working memory, spatial working memory, and fluid intelligence. Sustained attention performance was also evaluated in a task interleaved between resting state scans. Functional connectivity within and between the DMN and TPN was related to performance on these tasks. Decreased TPN resting state connectivity was found to significantly correlate with fewer errors on an interrupter task presented during a spatial working memory paradigm and decreased DMN/TPN anti-correlation was significantly correlated with fewer errors on an interrupter task presented during a verbal working memory paradigm. A trend for increased DMN resting state connectivity to correlate to measures of fluid intelligence was also observed. These results provide additional evidence of the relationship between resting state networks and behavioral performance, and show that such results can be observed with high temporal resolution fMRI. Because cognitive scores and functional connectivity were collected on nonconsecutive days, these results highlight the stability of functional connectivity/cognitive performance coupling.
Rabbitt, Laura R; Roberts, Daniel M; McDonald, Craig G; Peterson, Matthew S
There is extensive evidence that the contralateral delay activity (CDA), a scalp recorded event-related brain potential, provides a reliable index of the number of objects held in visual working memory. Here we present evidence that the CDA not only indexes visual object working memory, but also the number of locations held in spatial working memory. In addition, we demonstrate that the CDA can be predictably modulated by the type of encoding strategy employed. When individual locations were held in working memory, the pattern of CDA modulation mimicked previous findings for visual object working memory. Specifically, CDA amplitude increased monotonically until working memory capacity was reached. However, when participants were instructed to group individual locations to form a constellation, the CDA was prolonged and reached an asymptote at two locations. This result provides neural evidence for the formation of a unitary representation of multiple spatial locations. Published by Elsevier B.V.
Lum, J. A. G.; Conti-Ramsden, G.; Page, D.
at declarative memory for visual information, and at declarative memory in the verbal domain after controlling for working memory and language. Visuo-spatial short-term memory was intact, whereas verbal working memory was impaired, even when language deficits were held constant. Correlation analyses showed......According to the Procedural Deficit Hypothesis (PDH), abnormalities of brain structures underlying procedural memory largely explain the language deficits in children with specific language impairment (SLI). These abnormalities are posited to result in core deficits of procedural memory, which...... in turn explain the grammar problems in the disorder. The abnormalities are also likely to lead to problems with other, non-procedural functions, such as working memory, that rely at least partly on the affected brain structures. In contrast, declarative memory is expected to remain largely intact...
Cocchi, Luca; Toepel, Ulrike; De Lucia, Marzia; Martuzzi, Roberto; Wood, Stephen J.; Carter, Olivia; Murray, Micah M.
Increasing evidence suggests that working memory and perceptual processes are dynamically interrelated due to modulating activity in overlapping brain networks. However, the direct influence of working memory on the spatio-temporal brain dynamics of behaviorally relevant intervening information remains unclear. To investigate this issue, subjects performed a visual proximity grid perception task under three different visual-spatial working memory (VSWM) load conditions. VSWM load was manipula...
Nategh, Mohsen; Nikseresht, Sara; Khodagholi, Fariba; Motamedi, Fereshteh
Nucleus incertus (NI) is a pontine nucleus which releases mainly GABA and relaxin-3 in rats. Its suggested functions include response to stress, arousal, and modulation of hippocampal theta rhythm. Since the role of NI in learning and memory has not been well characterized, therefore the involvement of this nucleus in spatial learning and memory and the aftermath hippocampal levels of c-fos and pCREB were evaluated. NI was targeted by implanting cannula in male rats. For reference memory, NI was inactivated by lidocaine (0.4 μl, 4%) at three stages of acquisition, consolidation and retrieval in Morris water maze paradigm. For working memory, NI was inactivated in acquisition and retrieval phases. Injection of lidocaine prior to the first training session of reference memory significantly increased the distance moved, suggesting that inactivation of NI delays acquisition in this spatial task. Inactivation also interfered with the retrieval phase of spatial reference memory, as the time in target quadrant for lidocaine group was less, and the escape latency was higher compared to the control group. However, no difference was observed in the consolidation phase. In the working memory task, with inter-trial intervals of 75 min, the escape latency was higher when NI was inactivated in the retrieval phase. In addition, c-fos and pCREB/CREB levels decreased in NI-inhibited rats. This study suggests that nucleus incertus might participate in acquisition of spatial reference, and retrieval of both spatial reference and working memory. Further studies should investigate possible roles of NI in the hippocampal plasticity. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Brunyé, Tad T; Mahoney, Caroline R; Augustyn, Jason S; Taylor, Holly A
The present work investigated the effects of participant emotional state on global versus local memory for map-based information. Participants were placed into one of four emotion induction groups, crossing high and low arousal with positive and negative valence, or a control group. They then studied a university campus map and completed two memory tests, free recall and spatial statement verification. Converging evidence from these two tasks demonstrated that arousal amplifies symbolic distance effects and leads to a globally-focused spatial mental representation, partially at the expense of local knowledge. These results were found for both positively- and negatively-valenced affective states. The present study is the first investigation of emotional effects on spatial memory, and has implications for theories of emotion and spatial cognition.
Geldorp, B. van; Konings, E.P.; Tilborg, I.A. Van; Kessels, R.P.C.
Recent studies indicate deficits in associative working memory in patients with medial-temporal lobe amnesia. However, it is unclear whether these deficits reflect working memory processing or are due to hippocampally mediated long-term memory impairment. We investigated associative working memory
Geldorp, B. van; Konings, E.P.C.; Tilborg, I.A.D.A. van; Kessels, R.P.C.
Recent studies indicate deficits in associative working memory in patients with medial-temporal lobe amnesia. However, it is unclear whether these deficits reflect working memory processing or are due to hippocampally mediated long-term memory impairment. We investigated associative working memory
Roberts, William A; Strang, Caroline; Macpherson, Krista
Pigeons' performance on a working memory task, symbolic delayed matching-to-sample, was used to examine the interaction between working memory and reference memory. Reference memory was established by training pigeons to discriminate between the comparison cues used in delayed matching as S+ and S- stimuli. Delayed matching retention tests then measured accuracy when working and reference memory were congruent and incongruent. In 4 experiments, it was shown that the interaction between working and reference memory is reciprocal: Strengthening either type of memory leads to a decrease in the influence of the other type of memory. A process dissociation procedure analysis of the data from Experiment 4 showed independence of working and reference memory, and a model of working memory and reference memory interaction was shown to predict the findings reported in the 4 experiments. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2015 APA, all rights reserved).
Baddeley, Alan; Jarrold, Christopher; Vargha-Khadem, Faraneh
A number of studies suggest an important role for the hippocampus in tasks involving visuospatial or relational working memory. We test the generality of this proposal across tasks using a battery designed to investigate the various components of working memory, studying the working memory performance of Jon, who shows a bilateral reduction in hippocampal volume of approximately 50%, comparing him to a group of 48 college students. We measure performance on four complex working memory span measures based on combining visuospatial and verbal storage with visuospatial or verbal concurrent processing as well as measuring Jon's ability to carry out the component storage and processing aspects of these tasks. Jon performed at a consistently high level across our range of tasks. Possible reasons for the apparent disparity between our own findings and earlier studies showing a hippocampal deficit are discussed in terms of both the potential differences in the demands placed on relational memory and of the proposed distinction between egocentric and allocentric visuospatial processing.
Maheux, Manon; Jolicœur, Pierre
We examined the role of attention and visual working memory in the evaluation of the number of target stimuli as well as their relative spatial position using the N2pc and the SPCN. Participants performed two tasks: a simple counting task in which they had to determine if a visual display contained one or two coloured items among grey fillers and one in which they had to identify a specific relation between two coloured items. The same stimuli were used for both tasks. Each task was designed to permit an easier evaluation of either the same-coloured or differently-coloured stimuli. We predicted a greater involvement of attention and visual working memory for more difficult stimulus-task pairings. The results confirmed these predictions and suggest that visuospatial configurations that require more time to evaluate induce a greater (and presumably longer) involvement of attention and visual working memory. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Livia de Hoz
Full Text Available Retrograde amnesia can occur after brain damage because this disrupts sites of storage, interrupts memory consolidation, or interferes with memory retrieval. While the retrieval failure account has been considered in several animal studies, recent work has focused mainly on memory consolidation, and the neural mechanisms responsible for reactivating memory from stored traces remain poorly understood. We now describe a new retrieval phenomenon in which rats' memory for a spatial location in a watermaze was first weakened by partial lesions of the hippocampus to a level at which it could not be detected. The animals were then reminded by the provision of incomplete and potentially misleading information-an escape platform in a novel location. Paradoxically, both incorrect and correct place information reactivated dormant memory traces equally, such that the previously trained spatial memory was now expressed. It was also established that the reminding procedure could not itself generate new learning in either the original environment, or in a new training situation. The key finding is the development of a protocol that definitively distinguishes reminding from new place learning and thereby reveals that a failure of memory during watermaze testing can arise, at least in part, from a disruption of memory retrieval.
Bedard, Anne-Claude; Martinussen, Rhonda; Ickowicz, Abel; Tannock, Rosemary
Objective: To investigate the effect of methylphenidate (MPH) on visual-spatial memory, as measured by subtests of the Cambridge Neuropsychological Testing Automated Battery (CANTAB), in children with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). Visual-spatial memory is a core component of working memory that has been shown to be impaired in…
Banta Lavenex, Pamela; Boujon, Valérie; Ndarugendamwo, Angélique; Lavenex, Pierre
Here, we aimed to determine the capacity of human short-term memory for allocentric spatial information in a real-world setting. Young adults were tested on their ability to learn, on a trial-unique basis, and remember over a 1-min interval the location(s) of 1, 3, 5, or 7 illuminating pads, among 23 pads distributed in a 4m×4m arena surrounded by curtains on three sides. Participants had to walk to and touch the pads with their foot to illuminate the goal locations. In contrast to the predictions from classical slot models of working memory capacity limited to a fixed number of items, i.e., Miller's magical number 7 or Cowan's magical number 4, we found that the number of visited locations to find the goals was consistently about 1.6 times the number of goals, whereas the number of correct choices before erring and the number of errorless trials varied with memory load even when memory load was below the hypothetical memory capacity. In contrast to resource models of visual working memory, we found no evidence that memory resources were evenly distributed among unlimited numbers of items to be remembered. Instead, we found that memory for even one individual location was imprecise, and that memory performance for one location could be used to predict memory performance for multiple locations. Our findings are consistent with a theoretical model suggesting that the precision of the memory for individual locations might determine the capacity of human short-term memory for spatial information. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Background: Working memory is linked to learning outcomes and there is emerging evidence that training working memory can yield gains in working memory and fluid intelligence. Aims: The aim of the present study was to investigate whether interactive working memory training would transfer to acquired cognitive skills, such as vocabulary and…
Morey, Candice C.; Morey, Richard D.; van der Reijden, Madeleine; Holweg, Margot
Observations of higher dual-task costs for within-domain than cross-domain task combinations constitute classic evidence for multi-component models of working memory (e.g., Baddeley, 1986; Logie, 2011). However, we report an asymmetric pattern of interference between verbal and visual-spatial tasks,
Full Text Available The underlying mechanisms of alpha band (8–12 Hz neural oscillations are of importance to the functioning of attention control systems as well as to neuropsychiatric conditions that are characterized by deficits of that system, such as attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD. The objectives of the present study were to test if visual encoding-related alpha event-related desynchronization (ERD correlates with fronto-parieto-occipital connectivity, and whether this is disrupted in ADHD during spatial working memory (SWM performance. We acquired EEG concurrently with fMRI in thirty boys (12–16 yrs. old, 15 with ADHD, during SWM encoding. Psychophysiological connectivity analyses indicated that alpha ERD during SWM encoding was associated with both occipital activation and fronto-parieto-occipital functional connectivity, a finding that expands on prior associations between alpha ERD and occipital activation. This finding provides novel support for the interpretation of alpha ERD (and the associated changes in occipital activation as a phenomenon that involves, and perhaps arises as a result of, top-down network interactions. Alpha ERD was associated less strongly with occipital activity, but associated more strongly with fronto-parieto-occipital connectivity in ADHD, consistent with a compensatory attentional response. Additionally, we illustrate that degradation of EEG data quality by MRI-amplified motion artifacts is robust to existing cleaning algorithms and is significantly correlated with hyperactivity symptoms and the ADHD Combined Type diagnosis. We conclude that persistent motion-related MR artifacts in EEG data can increase variance and introduce bias in interpretation of group differences in populations characterized by hypermobility — a clear limitation of current-state EEG-fMRI methodology.
Stormer, Viola S.; Passow, Susanne; Biesenack, Julia; Li, Shu-Chen
Attention and working memory are fundamental for selecting and maintaining behaviorally relevant information. Not only do both processes closely intertwine at the cognitive level, but they implicate similar functional brain circuitries, namely the frontoparietal and the frontostriatal networks, which are innervated by cholinergic and dopaminergic…
Banales, Erin; Kohnen, Saskia; McArthur, Genevieve
The aim of the current study was to determine whether poor verbal working memory is associated with poor word reading accuracy because the former causes the latter, or the latter causes the former. To this end, we tested whether (a) verbal working memory training improves poor verbal working memory or poor word reading accuracy, and whether (b) reading training improves poor reading accuracy or verbal working memory in a case series of four children with poor word reading accuracy and verbal working memory. Each child completed 8 weeks of verbal working memory training and 8 weeks of reading training. Verbal working memory training improved verbal working memory in two of the four children, but did not improve their reading accuracy. Similarly, reading training improved word reading accuracy in all children, but did not improve their verbal working memory. These results suggest that the causal links between verbal working memory and reading accuracy may not be as direct as has been assumed.
QIUHong; ZHAOWei－kang; 等
Objective:To observe the effect of Tiaoxin Recipe(TXR) on the spatial memory,brain mitochondrial energy metabolism of oxidation injured Alzheimer's disease(AD) rats,and to explore the mechanism of TXR in treating AD.Methods:Eighty-eight SD rats were randomly divided into five groups (normal group,operative group,“AD”model group,TXR group and Aricept group).An oxygen free rad-ical generation system (dihydroxy fumaric acid-trichloroferric-adenosine diphosphate,DHF-FeCl3-ADP)was used to create oxidation injured rat models mimic to AD; spatial learning and memeory impairment (Morris water maze method),the activity of Succinate-oxidase,NADH-oxidase,CytC-oxidase(Clark ox-ygen electrode method)and the expression of cytochrome oxidase(CO)ⅡmRNA(in situ hybridization method)were observed.Results:Compared with the normal group,the spatial memory,activity of CytC-oxidase and COⅡmRNA expression of oxidation injured“AD”rats were obviously decreased;TXR,how-ever,could improve these functions in “AD”rat models obviously.Conclusion:The mechanism of the ac-tion of TXR in treating AD was partly related to its effect on anti-oxidation which could improve brain mi-tochondrial energy metabolism.
BACKGROUND: Visual working memory capacity is extremely limited and appears to be relatively immune to practice effects or the use of explicit strategies. The recent discovery that visual working memory tasks, like verbal working memory tasks, are subject to proactive interference, coupled with the fact that typical visual working memory tasks are particularly conducive to proactive interference, suggests that visual working memory capacity may be systematically under-estimated. METHODOLOGY/P...
Baddeley, A.; Jarrold, C.
A brief account is given of the evolution of the concept of working memory from a unitary store into a multicomponent system. Four components are distinguished, the phonological loop which is responsible for maintaining speech-based information, the visuospatial sketchpad performing a similar function for visual information, the central executive…
Shipstead, Zach; Redick, Thomas S.; Engle, Randall W.
Working memory (WM) is a cognitive system that strongly relates to a person's ability to reason with novel information and direct attention to goal-relevant information. Due to the central role that WM plays in general cognition, it has become the focus of a rapidly growing training literature that seeks to affect broad cognitive change through…
Neuser, Kirsa; Triphan, Tilman; Mronz, Markus; Poeck, Burkhard; Strauss, Roland
Flexible goal-driven orientation requires that the position of a target be stored, especially in case the target moves out of sight. The capability to retain, recall and integrate such positional information into guiding behaviour has been summarized under the term spatial working memory. This kind of memory contains specific details of the presence that are not necessarily part of a long-term memory. Neurophysiological studies in primates indicate that sustained activity of neurons encodes the sensory information even though the object is no longer present. Furthermore they suggest that dopamine transmits the respective input to the prefrontal cortex, and simultaneous suppression by GABA spatially restricts this neuronal activity. Here we show that Drosophila melanogaster possesses a similar spatial memory during locomotion. Using a new detour setup, we show that flies can remember the position of an object for several seconds after it has been removed from their environment. In this setup, flies are temporarily lured away from the direction towards their hidden target, yet they are thereafter able to aim for their former target. Furthermore, we find that the GABAergic (stainable with antibodies against GABA) ring neurons of the ellipsoid body in the central brain are necessary and their plasticity is sufficient for a functional spatial orientation memory in flies. We also find that the protein kinase S6KII (ignorant) is required in a distinct subset of ring neurons to display this memory. Conditional expression of S6KII in these neurons only in adults can restore the loss of the orientation memory of the ignorant mutant. The S6KII signalling pathway therefore seems to be acutely required in the ring neurons for spatial orientation memory in flies.
The present study was on the effects of haloperidol injection on anterograde and retrograde topographic memories for spatial behaviours in Long Evan rats. Twelve Long Evan albino rats weighing 0.5 – 0.8 kg (6 males, 6 females) were used for the study. Complex Maze Box of 14 unit T Alley from the Royal Institute of ...
Golob, Edward J; Winston, Jenna; Mock, Jeffrey R
Short-term memory load can impair attentional control, but prior work shows that the extent of the effect ranges from being very general to very specific. One factor for the mixed results may be reliance on point estimates of memory load effects on attention. Here we used auditory attention gradients as an analog measure to map-out the impact of short-term memory load over space. Verbal or spatial information was maintained during an auditory spatial attention task and compared to no-load. Stimuli were presented from five virtual locations in the frontal azimuth plane, and subjects focused on the midline. Reaction times progressively increased for lateral stimuli, indicating an attention gradient. Spatial load further slowed responses at lateral locations, particularly in the left hemispace, but had little effect at midline. Verbal memory load had no (Experiment 1), or a minimal (Experiment 2) influence on reaction times. Spatial and verbal load increased switch costs between memory encoding and attention tasks relative to the no load condition. The findings show that short-term memory influences the distribution of auditory attention over space; and that the specific pattern depends on the type of information in short-term memory.
Edward J. Golob
Full Text Available Short-term memory load can impair attentional control, but prior work shows that the extent of the effect ranges from being very general to very specific. One factor for the mixed results may be reliance on point estimates of memory load effects on attention. Here we used auditory attention gradients as an analog measure to map-out the impact of short-term memory load over space. Verbal or spatial information was maintained during an auditory spatial attention task and compared to no-load. Stimuli were presented from five virtual locations in the frontal azimuth plane, and subjects focused on the midline. Reaction times progressively increased for lateral stimuli, indicating an attention gradient. Spatial load further slowed responses at lateral locations, particularly in the left hemispace, but had little effect at midline. Verbal memory load had no (Experiment 1, or a minimal (Experiment 2 influence on reaction times. Spatial and verbal load increased switch costs between memory encoding and attention tasks relative to the no load condition. The findings show that short-term memory influences the distribution of auditory attention over space; and that the specific pattern depends on the type of information in short-term memory.
Gudde, Harmen B; Griffiths, Debra; Coventry, Kenny R
The memory game paradigm is a behavioral procedure to explore the relationship between language, spatial memory, and object knowledge. Using two different versions of the paradigm, spatial language use and memory for object location are tested under different, experimentally manipulated conditions. This allows us to tease apart proposed models explaining the influence of object knowledge on spatial language (e.g., spatial demonstratives), and spatial memory, as well as understanding the parameters that affect demonstrative choice and spatial memory more broadly. Key to the development of the method was the need to collect data on language use (e.g., spatial demonstratives: "this/that") and spatial memory data under strictly controlled conditions, while retaining a degree of ecological validity. The language version (section 3.1) of the memory game tests how conditions affect language use. Participants refer verbally to objects placed at different locations (e.g., using spatial demonstratives: "this/that red circle"). Different parameters can be experimentally manipulated: the distance from the participant, the position of a conspecific, and for example whether the participant owns, knows, or sees the object while referring to it. The same parameters can be manipulated in the memory version of the memory game (section 3.2). This version tests the effects of the different conditions on object-location memory. Following object placement, participants get 10 seconds to memorize the object's location. After the object and location cues are removed, participants verbally direct the experimenter to move a stick to indicate where the object was. The difference between the memorized and the actual location shows the direction and strength of the memory error, allowing comparisons between the influences of the respective parameters.
Lucidi, Annalisa; Langerock, Naomi; Hoareau, Violette; Lemaire, Benoît; Camos, Valérie; Barrouillet, Pierre
The causal role of verbal rehearsal in working memory has recently been called into question. For example, the SOB-CS (Serial Order in a Box-Complex Span) model assumes that there is no maintenance process for the strengthening of items in working memory, but instead a process of removal of distractors that are involuntarily encoded and create interference with memory items. In the present study, we tested the idea that verbal working memory performance can be accounted for without assuming a causal role of the verbal rehearsal process. We demonstrate in two experiments using a complex span task and a Brown-Peterson paradigm that increasing the number of repetitions of the same distractor (the syllable ba that was read aloud at each of its occurrences on screen) has a detrimental effect on the concurrent maintenance of consonants whereas the maintenance of spatial locations remains unaffected. A detailed analysis of the tasks demonstrates that accounting for this effect within the SOB-CS model requires a series of unwarranted assumptions leading to undesirable further predictions contradicted by available experimental evidence. We argue that the hypothesis of a maintenance mechanism based on verbal rehearsal that is impeded by concurrent articulation still provides the simplest and most compelling account of our results.
Kessels, R.P.C.; Hendriks, M.P.H.; Schouten, J.A.; Asselen, M. van; Postma, A.
The present study investigated the differential involvement of the right and left hippocampus in various forms of spatial memory: spatial search, positional memory versus object-location binding, and coordinate versus categorical processing. Twenty-five epilepsy patients with selective
Melanie Rose Burke
Full Text Available Recent behavioural and biological evidence indicates common mechanisms serving working memory and attention (eg, Awh et al 2006, Trends in Cognitive Sciences 10, 124–130. This study explored the role of spatial attention and visual search in an adapted Corsi spatial memory task. Eye movements and touch responses were recorded from participants who recalled locations (signalled by colour or shape change from an array presented either simultaneously or sequentially. The time delay between target presentation and recall (0, 5, or 10s and the number of locations to be remembered (2–5 were also manipulated. Analysis of the response phase revealed subjects were less accurate (touch data and fixated longer (eye data when responding to sequentially presented targets. Fixation duration was also influenced by whether spatial location was initially signalled by colour or shape change. We conclude that attention and temporal delays during retention of a target play a minor role in motor behaviour during a corsi spatial memory task. In contrast, the type of memory required (ie, location and/or memory and number of items plays a key role on subject performance and behaviour.
Vendetti, Michael; Castel, Alan D; Holyoak, Keith J
People typically remember objects to which they have frequently been exposed, suggesting that memory is a by-product of perception. However, prior research has shown that people have exceptionally poor memory for the features of some objects (e.g., coins) to which they have been exposed over the course of many years. Here, we examined how people remember the spatial layout of the buttons on a frequently used elevator panel, to determine whether physical interaction (rather than simple exposure) would ensure the incidental encoding of spatial information. Participants who worked in an eight-story office building displayed very poor recall for the elevator panel but above-chance performance on a recognition test. Performance was related to how often and how recently the person had used the elevator. In contrast to their poor memory for the spatial layout of the elevator buttons, most people readily recalled small distinctive graffiti on the elevator walls. In a more implicit test, the majority were able to locate their office floor and the eighth floor button when asked to point toward these buttons when in the actual elevator, with the button labels covered. However, identification was very poor for other floors (including the first floor), suggesting that even frequent interaction with information does not always lead to accurate spatial memory. These findings have implications for understanding the complex relationships among attention, expertise, and memory.
Kaiser, Jochen; Walker, Florian; Leiberg, Susanne; Lutzenberger, Werner
In human magnetoencephalogram, we have found gamma-band activity (GBA), a putative measure of cortical network synchronization, during both bottom-up and top-down auditory processing. When sound positions had to be retained in short-term memory for 800 ms, enhanced GBA was detected over posterior parietal cortex, possibly reflecting the activation of higher sensory storage systems along the hypothesized auditory dorsal space processing stream. Additional prefrontal GBA increases suggested an involvement of central executive networks in stimulus maintenance. The present study assessed spatial echoic memory with the same stimuli but a shorter memorization interval of 200 ms. Statistical probability mapping revealed posterior parietal GBA increases at 80 Hz near the end of the memory phase and both gamma and theta enhancements in response to the test stimulus. In contrast to the previous short-term memory study, no prefrontal gamma or theta enhancements were detected. This suggests that spatial echoic memory is performed by networks along the putative auditory dorsal stream, without requiring an involvement of prefrontal executive regions.
Schneiders, Julia A.; Opitz, Bertram; Tang, Huijun; Deng, Yuan; Xie, Chaoxiang; Li, Hong; Mecklinger, Axel
Working memory training has been widely used to investigate working memory processes. We have shown previously that visual working memory benefits only from intra-modal visual but not from across-modal auditory working memory training. In the present functional magnetic resonance imaging study we examined whether auditory working memory processes can also be trained specifically and which training-induced activation changes accompany theses effects. It was investigated whether working memory ...
Kang, Min-Suk; Hong, Sang Wook; Blake, Randolph; Woodman, Geoffrey F.
Indirect evidence suggests that the contents of visual working memory may be maintained within sensory areas early in the visual hierarchy. We tested this possibility using a well-studied motion repulsion phenomenon in which perception of one direction of motion is distorted when another direction of motion is viewed simultaneously. We found that observers misperceived the actual direction of motion of a single motion stimulus if, while viewing that stimulus, they were holding a different mot...
Plescia, Fulvio; Marino, Rosa A M; Navarra, Michele; Gambino, Giuditta; Brancato, Anna; Sardo, Pierangelo; Cannizzaro, Carla
This study aims at providing an insight into early handling procedures on learning and memory performance in adult female rats. Early handling procedures were started on post-natal day 2 until 21, and consisted in 15 min, daily separations of the dams from their litters. Assessment of declarative memory was carried out in the novel-object recognition task; spatial learning, reference- and working memory were evaluated in the Morris water maze (MWM). Our results indicate that early handling induced an enhancement in: (1) declarative memory, in the object recognition task, both at 1h and 24h intervals; (2) reference memory in the probe test and working memory and behavioral flexibility in the "single-trial and four-trial place learning paradigm" of the MWM. Short-term separation by increasing maternal care causes a dampening in HPA axis response in the pups. A modulated activation of the stress response may help to protect brain structures, involved in cognitive function. In conclusion, this study shows the long-term effects of a brief maternal separation in enhancing object recognition-, spatial reference- and working memory in female rats, remarking the impact of early environmental experiences and the consequent maternal care on the behavioral adaptive mechanisms in adulthood. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
The present thesis investigated memory load and memory decay in auditory working memory. Alpha power as a marker for memory load served as the primary indicator for load and decay fluctuations hypothetically reflecting functional inhibition of irrelevant information. Memory load was induced by presenting auditory signals (syllables and pure-tone sequences) in noise because speech-in-noise has been shown before to increase memory load. The aim of the thesis was to assess with magnetoencephalog...
This paper investigates the roles of working memory in interpreting process. First of all, it gives a brief introduction to interpreting. Secondly, the paper exemplifies the role of working memory in interpreting. The result reveals that the working memory capacity of interpreters is not adsolutely proportional to the quality of interpreting in the real interpreting conditions. The performance of an interpreter with well-equipped working memory capacity will comprehensively influenced by various elements.
.... This study looked at how comprehension and memory processing at the mental model level is related to traditional measures of working memory capacity, including the word span, reading span, operation...
Szmalec, Arnaud; Verbruggen, Frederick; Vandierendonck, Andre; Kemps, Eva
The current study examined the nature of the processes underlying working memory updating. In 4 experiments using the n-back paradigm, the authors demonstrate that continuous updating of items in working memory prevents strong binding of those items to their contexts in working memory, and hence leads to an increased susceptibility to proactive…
Jones, Bethany; Bukoski, Elizabeth; Nadel, Lynn; Fellous, Jean-Marc
There is strong evidence that reactivation of a memory returns it to a labile state, initiating a restabilization process termed reconsolidation, which allows for updating of the memory. In this study we investigated reactivation-dependent updating using a new positively motivated spatial task in rodents that was designed specifically to model a human list-learning paradigm. On Day 1, rats were trained to run to three feeders (List 1) for rewards. On Day 2, rats were trained to run to three different feeders (List 2) in either the same (Reminder condition) or a different (No Reminder condition) experimental context than on Day 1. On Day 3, rats were cued to recall List 1. Rats in the Reminder condition made significantly more visits to List 2 feeders (intrusions) during List 1 recall than rats in the No Reminder condition, indicating that the reminder triggered reactivation and allowed integration of List 2 items into List 1. This reminder effect was selective for the reactivated List 1 memory, as no intrusions occurred when List 2 was recalled on Day 3. No intrusions occurred when retrieval took place in a different context from the one used at encoding, indicating that the expression of the updated memory is dependent upon the retrieval context. Finally, the level of intrusions was highest when retrieval took place immediately after List 2 learning, and generally declined when retrieval occurred 1-4 h later, indicating that the List 2 memory competed with short-term retrieval of List 1. These results demonstrate the dynamic nature of memory over time and the impact of environmental context at different stages of memory processing.
Wood, Justin N.
Visual working memory (VWM) is widely thought to contain specialized buffers for retaining spatial and object information: a "spatial-object architecture." However, studies of adults, infants, and nonhuman animals show that visual cognition builds on core knowledge systems that retain more specialized representations: (1) spatiotemporal…
Burke, Melanie R; Allen, Richard J; Gonzalez, Claudia
Recent behavioural and biological evidence indicates common mechanisms serving working memory and attention (e.g., Awh et al, 2006 Neuroscience 139 201-208). This study explored the role of spatial attention and visual search in an adapted Corsi spatial memory task. Eye movements and touch responses were recorded from participants who recalled locations (signalled by colour or shape change) from an array presented either simultaneously or sequentially. The time delay between target presentation and recall (0, 5, or 10 s) and the number of locations to be remembered (2-5) were also manipulated. Analysis of the response phase revealed subjects were less accurate (touch data) and fixated longer (eye data) when responding to sequentially presented targets suggesting higher cognitive effort. Fixation duration on target at recall was also influenced by whether spatial location was initially signalled by colour or shape change. Finally, we found that the sequence tasks encouraged longer fixations on the signalled targets than simultaneous viewing during encoding, but no difference was observed during recall. We conclude that the attentional manipulations (colour/shape) mainly affected the eye movement parameters, whereas the memory manipulation (sequential versus simultaneous, number of items) mainly affected the performance of the hand during recall, and thus the latter is more important for ascertaining if an item is remembered or forgotten. In summary, the nature of the stimuli that is used and how it is presented play key roles in determining subject performance and behaviour during spatial memory tasks.
Kang, Jiyun; Shin, Jung-Won; Kim, Yoo-Rim; Swanberg, Kelley M; Kim, Yooseung; Bae, Jae Ryong; Kim, Young Ki; Lee, Jinwon; Kim, Soo-Yeon; Sohn, Nak-Won; Maeng, Sungho
How to maintain and enhance cognitive functions for both aged and young populations is a highly interesting subject. But candidate memory-enhancing reagents are tested almost exclusively on lesioned or aged animals. Also, there is insufficient information on the type of memory these reagents can improve. Working memory, located in the prefrontal cortex, manages short-term sensory information, but, by gaining significant relevance, this information is converted to long-term memory by hippocampal formation and/or amygdala, followed by tagging with space-time or emotional cues, respectively. Nobiletin is a product of citrus peel known for cognitive-enhancing effects in various pharmacological and neurodegenerative disease models, yet, it is not well studied in non-lesioned animals and the type of memory that nobiletin can improve remains unclear. In this study, 8-week-old male mice were tested using behavioral measurements for working, spatial referential, emotional and visual recognition memory after daily administration of nobiletin. While nobiletin did not induce any change of spontaneous activity in the open field test, freezing by fear conditioning and novel object recognition increased. However, the effectiveness of spatial navigation in the Y-maze and Morris water maze was not improved. These results mean that nobiletin can specifically improve memories of emotionally salient information associated with fear and novelty, but not of spatial information without emotional saliency. Accordingly, the use of nobiletin on normal subjects as a memory enhancer would be more effective on emotional types but may have limited value for the improvement of episodic memories.
Keogh, Rebecca; Pearson, Joel
Visual working memory provides an essential link between past and future events. Despite recent efforts, capacity limits, their genesis and the underlying neural structures of visual working memory remain unclear. Here we show that performance in visual working memory - but not iconic visual memory - can be predicted by the strength of mental imagery as assessed with binocular rivalry in a given individual. In addition, for individuals with strong imagery, modulating the background luminance ...
.... That work has resulted in numerous publications and conference presentations demonstrating that individuals who score in the bottom quartile on measures of working memory capacity show more errors...
Katus, Tobias; Eimer, Martin
The short-term retention of sensory information in working memory (WM) is known to be associated with a sustained enhancement of neural activity. What remains controversial is whether this neural trace indicates the sustained storage of information or the allocation of attention. To evaluate the storage and attention accounts, we examined sustained tactile contralateral delay activity (tCDA component) of the event-related potential. The tCDA manifests over somatosensory cortex contralateral to task-relevant tactile information during stimulus retention. Two tactile sample sets (S1, S2) were presented sequentially, separated by 1.5 s. Each set comprised two stimuli, one per hand. Human participants memorized the location of one task-relevant stimulus per sample set and judged whether one of these locations was stimulated again at memory test. The two relevant pulses were unpredictably located on the same hand (stay trials) or on different hands (shift trials). Initially, tCDA components emerged contralateral to the relevant S1 pulse. Sequential loading of WM enhanced the tCDA after S2 was presented on stay trials. On shift trials, the tCDA's polarity reversed after S2 presentation, resulting in delay activity that was now contralateral to the task-relevant S2 pulse. The disappearance of a lateralized neural trace for the relevant S1 pulse did not impair memory accuracy for this stimulus on shift trials. These results contradict the storage account and suggest that delay period activity indicates the sustained engagement of an attention-based rehearsal mechanism. In conclusion, somatosensory delay period activity marks the current focus of attention in tactile WM. Copyright © 2015 the authors 0270-6474/15/356689-07$15.00/0.
Effects on working memory performance relating to item similarity have been linked to prior categorisation of representations in long-term memory. However, there is evidence from gesture processing that this link may not be obligatory. The present study investigated whether working memory for incidentally generated meaningless manual gestures is influenced by formational similarity and whether this effect is modulated by working-memory load. Results showed that formational similarity did lower performance, demonstrating that similarity effects are not dependent on prior categorisation. However, this effect was only found when working-memory load was low, supporting a flexible resource allocation model according to which it is the quality rather than quantity of working memory representations that determines performance. This interpretation is in line with proposals suggesting language modality specific allocation of resources in working memory. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2015 APA, all rights reserved).
Kessels, R P C; Feijen, J; Postma, A
There is abundant evidence that memory impairment in dementia in patients with Alzheimer's disease (AD) is related to explicit, conscious forms of memory, whereas implicit, unconscious forms of memory function remain relatively intact or are less severely affected. Only a few studies have been performed on spatial memory function in AD, showing that AD patients' explicit spatial memory is impaired, possibly related to hippocampal dysfunction. However, studies on implicit spatial memory in AD are lacking. The current study set out to investigate implicit and explicit spatial memory in AD patients (n=18) using an ecologically valid computer task, in which participants had to remember the locations of various objects in common rooms. The contribution of implicit and explicit memory functions was estimated by means of the process dissociation procedure. The results show that explicit spatial memory is impaired in AD patients compared with a control group (n=21). However, no group difference was found on implicit spatial function. This indicates that spared implicit memory in AD extends to the spatial domain, while the explicit spatial memory function deteriorates. Clinically, this finding might be relevant, in that an intact implicit memory function might be helpful in overcoming problems in explicit processing. Copyright (c) 2005 S. Karger AG, Basel.
Wilsch, Anna; Obleser, Jonas
Working memory is a limited resource: brains can only maintain small amounts of sensory input (memory load) over a brief period of time (memory decay). The dynamics of slow neural oscillations as recorded using magneto- and electroencephalography (M/EEG) provide a window into the neural mechanics of these limitations. Especially oscillations in the alpha range (8-13Hz) are a sensitive marker for memory load. Moreover, according to current models, the resultant working memory load is determined by the relative noise in the neural representation of maintained information. The auditory domain allows memory researchers to apply and test the concept of noise quite literally: Employing degraded stimulus acoustics increases memory load and, at the same time, allows assessing the cognitive resources required to process speech in noise in an ecologically valid and clinically relevant way. The present review first summarizes recent findings on neural oscillations, especially alpha power, and how they reflect memory load and memory decay in auditory working memory. The focus is specifically on memory load resulting from acoustic degradation. These findings are then contrasted with contextual factors that benefit neural as well as behavioral markers of memory performance, by reducing representational noise. We end on discussing the functional role of alpha power in auditory working memory and suggest extensions of the current methodological toolkit. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled SI: Auditory working memory. Published by Elsevier B.V.
Schneegans, Sebastian; Spencer, John P.; Schöner, Gregor; Hwang, Seongmin; Hollingworth, Andrew
Recent psychophysical experiments have shown that working memory for visual surface features interacts with saccadic motor planning, even in tasks where the saccade target is unambiguously specified by spatial cues. Specifically, a match between a memorized color and the color of either the designated target or a distractor stimulus influences saccade target selection, saccade amplitudes, and latencies in a systematic fashion. To elucidate these effects, we present a dynamic neural field model in combination with new experimental data. The model captures the neural processes underlying visual perception, working memory, and saccade planning relevant to the psychophysical experiment. It consists of a low-level visual sensory representation that interacts with two separate pathways: a spatial pathway implementing spatial attention and saccade generation, and a surface feature pathway implementing color working memory and feature attention. Due to bidirectional coupling between visual working memory and feature attention in the model, the working memory content can indirectly exert an effect on perceptual processing in the low-level sensory representation. This in turn biases saccadic movement planning in the spatial pathway, allowing the model to quantitatively reproduce the observed interaction effects. The continuous coupling between representations in the model also implies that modulation should be bidirectional, and model simulations provide specific predictions for complementary effects of saccade target selection on visual working memory. These predictions were empirically confirmed in a new experiment: Memory for a sample color was biased toward the color of a task-irrelevant saccade target object, demonstrating the bidirectional coupling between visual working memory and perceptual processing. PMID:25228628
Schneegans, Sebastian; Spencer, John P; Schöner, Gregor; Hwang, Seongmin; Hollingworth, Andrew
Recent psychophysical experiments have shown that working memory for visual surface features interacts with saccadic motor planning, even in tasks where the saccade target is unambiguously specified by spatial cues. Specifically, a match between a memorized color and the color of either the designated target or a distractor stimulus influences saccade target selection, saccade amplitudes, and latencies in a systematic fashion. To elucidate these effects, we present a dynamic neural field model in combination with new experimental data. The model captures the neural processes underlying visual perception, working memory, and saccade planning relevant to the psychophysical experiment. It consists of a low-level visual sensory representation that interacts with two separate pathways: a spatial pathway implementing spatial attention and saccade generation, and a surface feature pathway implementing color working memory and feature attention. Due to bidirectional coupling between visual working memory and feature attention in the model, the working memory content can indirectly exert an effect on perceptual processing in the low-level sensory representation. This in turn biases saccadic movement planning in the spatial pathway, allowing the model to quantitatively reproduce the observed interaction effects. The continuous coupling between representations in the model also implies that modulation should be bidirectional, and model simulations provide specific predictions for complementary effects of saccade target selection on visual working memory. These predictions were empirically confirmed in a new experiment: Memory for a sample color was biased toward the color of a task-irrelevant saccade target object, demonstrating the bidirectional coupling between visual working memory and perceptual processing. © 2014 ARVO.
Levén, Anna; Lyxell, Björn; Andersson, Jan; Danielsson, Henrik; Rönnberg, Jerker
The purpose of the present study was to examine the relationship between prospective memory, working memory, retrospective memory and self-rated memory capacity in adults with and without intellectual disability. Prospective memory was investigated by means of a picture-based task. Working memory was measured as performance on span tasks. Retrospective memory was scored as recall of subject performed tasks. Self-ratings of memory performance were based on the prospective and retrospective mem...
Riley, Mitchell R.; Constantinidis, Christos
The prefrontal cortex is activated during working memory, as evidenced by fMRI results in human studies and neurophysiological recordings in animal models. Persistent activity during the delay period of working memory tasks, after the offset of stimuli that subjects are required to remember, has traditionally been thought of as the neural correlate of working memory. In the last few years several findings have cast doubt on the role of this activity. By some accounts, activity in other brain areas, such as the primary visual and posterior parietal cortex, is a better predictor of information maintained in visual working memory and working memory performance; dynamic patterns of activity may convey information without requiring persistent activity at all; and prefrontal neurons may be ill-suited to represent non-spatial information about the features and identity of remembered stimuli. Alternative interpretations about the role of the prefrontal cortex have thus been suggested, such as that it provides a top-down control of information represented in other brain areas, rather than maintaining a working memory trace itself. Here we review evidence for and against the role of prefrontal persistent activity, with a focus on visual neurophysiology. We show that persistent activity predicts behavioral parameters precisely in working memory tasks. We illustrate that prefrontal cortex represents features of stimuli other than their spatial location, and that this information is largely absent from early cortical areas during working memory. We examine memory models not dependent on persistent activity, and conclude that each of those models could mediate only a limited range of memory-dependent behaviors. We review activity decoded from brain areas other than the prefrontal cortex during working memory and demonstrate that these areas alone cannot mediate working memory maintenance, particularly in the presence of distractors. We finally discuss the discrepancy between
Avraamides, Marios N.; Kelly, Jonathan W.
Recent models in spatial cognition posit that distinct memory systems are responsible for maintaining transient and enduring spatial relations. The authors used perspective-taking performance to assess the presence of these enduring and transient spatial memories for locations encoded through verbal descriptions. Across 3 experiments, spatial…
Andrews-Zwilling, Yaisa; Gillespie, Anna K.; Kravitz, Alexxai V.; Nelson, Alexandra B.; Devidze, Nino; Lo, Iris; Yoon, Seo Yeon; Bien-Ly, Nga; Ring, Karen; Zwilling, Daniel; Potter, Gregory B.; Rubenstein, John L. R.; Kreitzer, Anatol C.; Huang, Yadong
Background Although extensive research has demonstrated the importance of excitatory granule neurons in the dentate gyrus of the hippocampus in normal learning and memory and in the pathogenesis of amnesia in Alzheimer's disease (AD), the role of hilar GABAergic inhibitory interneurons, which control the granule neuron activity, remains unclear. Methodology and Principal Findings We explored the function of hilar GABAergic interneurons in spatial learning and memory by inhibiting their activity through Cre-dependent viral expression of enhanced halorhodopsin (eNpHR3.0)—a light-driven chloride pump. Hilar GABAergic interneuron-specific expression of eNpHR3.0 was achieved by bilaterally injecting adeno-associated virus containing a double-floxed inverted open-reading frame encoding eNpHR3.0 into the hilus of the dentate gyrus of mice expressing Cre recombinase under the control of an enhancer specific for GABAergic interneurons. In vitro and in vivo illumination with a yellow laser elicited inhibition of hilar GABAergic interneurons and consequent activation of dentate granule neurons, without affecting pyramidal neurons in the CA3 and CA1 regions of the hippocampus. We found that optogenetic inhibition of hilar GABAergic interneuron activity impaired spatial learning and memory retrieval, without affecting memory retention, as determined in the Morris water maze test. Importantly, optogenetic inhibition of hilar GABAergic interneuron activity did not alter short-term working memory, motor coordination, or exploratory activity. Conclusions and Significance Our findings establish a critical role for hilar GABAergic interneuron activity in controlling spatial learning and memory retrieval and provide evidence for the potential contribution of GABAergic interneuron impairment to the pathogenesis of amnesia in AD. PMID:22792368
Full Text Available Although extensive research has demonstrated the importance of excitatory granule neurons in the dentate gyrus of the hippocampus in normal learning and memory and in the pathogenesis of amnesia in Alzheimer's disease (AD, the role of hilar GABAergic inhibitory interneurons, which control the granule neuron activity, remains unclear.We explored the function of hilar GABAergic interneurons in spatial learning and memory by inhibiting their activity through Cre-dependent viral expression of enhanced halorhodopsin (eNpHR3.0--a light-driven chloride pump. Hilar GABAergic interneuron-specific expression of eNpHR3.0 was achieved by bilaterally injecting adeno-associated virus containing a double-floxed inverted open-reading frame encoding eNpHR3.0 into the hilus of the dentate gyrus of mice expressing Cre recombinase under the control of an enhancer specific for GABAergic interneurons. In vitro and in vivo illumination with a yellow laser elicited inhibition of hilar GABAergic interneurons and consequent activation of dentate granule neurons, without affecting pyramidal neurons in the CA3 and CA1 regions of the hippocampus. We found that optogenetic inhibition of hilar GABAergic interneuron activity impaired spatial learning and memory retrieval, without affecting memory retention, as determined in the Morris water maze test. Importantly, optogenetic inhibition of hilar GABAergic interneuron activity did not alter short-term working memory, motor coordination, or exploratory activity.Our findings establish a critical role for hilar GABAergic interneuron activity in controlling spatial learning and memory retrieval and provide evidence for the potential contribution of GABAergic interneuron impairment to the pathogenesis of amnesia in AD.
Lee, In Ho; Culley, Deborah J; Baxter, Mark G; Xie, Zhongcong; Tanzi, Rudolph E; Crosby, Gregory
We have previously demonstrated that aged rats have persistent impairment of spatial memory after sedation with nitrous oxide or general anesthesia with isoflurane-nitrous oxide. Propofol has different receptor mechanisms of action and a favorable short-term recovery profile, and it has been proposed that propofol is devoid of enduring effects on cognitive performance. No studies have investigated this question in aged subjects, however, so we designed an experiment to examine the long-term effects of propofol anesthesia on spatial working memory. Eighteen-mo-old rats were randomized to 2 h of 100% oxygen-propofol anesthesia (n=11) or to a control group that breathed 100% oxygen (n=10). Propofol was administered by continuous infusion via a tail vein catheter. Rats breathed spontaneously and rectal temperature was maintained. Mean arterial blood pressure was measured noninvasively and a venous blood gas was obtained just before discontinuation of propofol. After a 2-day recovery, spatial working memory was assessed for 14 days using a 12-arm radial maze. The number of total errors, number of correct choices to first error, and time to complete the maze was recorded and analyzed using a repeated measure analysis of variance (ANOVA), with Pmemory in aged rats. In aged rats, propofol anesthesia is devoid of the persistent memory effects observed with other general anesthetics in this model. Thus, while it appears that the state of general anesthesia is neither necessary nor sufficient for development of postanesthetic memory impairment, the choice of anesthetics may play a role in late cognitive outcome in the aged.
Full Text Available Cognitive symptoms of depression, such as rumination, have shown to be associated with deficits in working memory functioning. More precisely, the capacity to expel irrelevant negative information from working memory seems to be affected. Even though these associations have repeatedly been demonstrated, the nature and causal direction of this association is still unclear. Therefore, within an experimental design, we tried to manipulate working memory functioning of participants with heightened rumination scores in two similar experiments (n = 72 and n = 45 using a six day working memory training compared to active and passive control groups. Subsequently the effects on the processing of non-emotional and emotional information in working memory were monitored. In both experiments, performance during the training task significantly increased, but this performance gain did not transfer to the outcome working memory tasks or rumination and depression measures. Possible explanations for the failure to find transfer effects are discussed.
Allred, Sarah R; Flombaum, Jonathan I
Color is the most frequently studied feature in visual working memory (VWM). Oddly, much of this work de-emphasizes perception, instead making simplifying assumptions about the inputs served to memory. We question these assumptions in light of perception research, and we identify important points of contact between perception and working memory in the case of color. Better characterization of its perceptual inputs will be crucial for elucidating the structure and function of VWM. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Waris, Otto; Soveri, Anna; Laine, Matti
During the past decade, working memory training has attracted much interest. However, the training outcomes have varied between studies and methodological problems have hampered the interpretation of results. The current study examined transfer after working memory updating training by employing an extensive battery of pre-post cognitive measures with a focus on near transfer. Thirty-one healthy Finnish young adults were randomized into either a working memory training group or an active cont...
小那覇, 洋子; Onaha, Hiroko
We often draw an analogy between human memory and computers. Information around us is taken into our memory storage first, and then we use the information in storage whatever we need it in our daily life. Linguistic information is also in storage and we process our thoughts based on the memory that is stored. Memory storage consists of multiple memory systems; one of which is called working memory that includes short-term memory. Working memory is the central system that underpins the process...
Al-Ahmadi, Fatheya; Oraif, Fatima
Working memory capacity is now well established as a rate determining factor in much learning and assessment, especially in the sciences. Most of the research has focussed on performance in tests and examinations in subject areas. This paper outlines some exploratory work in which other outcomes are related to working memory capacity. Confidence…
Hartshorne, Joshua K
Visual working memory capacity is extremely limited and appears to be relatively immune to practice effects or the use of explicit strategies. The recent discovery that visual working memory tasks, like verbal working memory tasks, are subject to proactive interference, coupled with the fact that typical visual working memory tasks are particularly conducive to proactive interference, suggests that visual working memory capacity may be systematically under-estimated. Working memory capacity was probed behaviorally in adult humans both in laboratory settings and via the Internet. Several experiments show that although the effect of proactive interference on visual working memory is significant and can last over several trials, it only changes the capacity estimate by about 15%. This study further confirms the sharp limitations on visual working memory capacity, both in absolute terms and relative to verbal working memory. It is suggested that future research take these limitations into account in understanding differences across a variety of tasks between human adults, prelinguistic infants and nonlinguistic animals.
Joshua K Hartshorne
Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Visual working memory capacity is extremely limited and appears to be relatively immune to practice effects or the use of explicit strategies. The recent discovery that visual working memory tasks, like verbal working memory tasks, are subject to proactive interference, coupled with the fact that typical visual working memory tasks are particularly conducive to proactive interference, suggests that visual working memory capacity may be systematically under-estimated. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Working memory capacity was probed behaviorally in adult humans both in laboratory settings and via the Internet. Several experiments show that although the effect of proactive interference on visual working memory is significant and can last over several trials, it only changes the capacity estimate by about 15%. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: This study further confirms the sharp limitations on visual working memory capacity, both in absolute terms and relative to verbal working memory. It is suggested that future research take these limitations into account in understanding differences across a variety of tasks between human adults, prelinguistic infants and nonlinguistic animals.
Event-related potential (ERP) was used to examine the interactions between working memory and selective attention. We combined two unrelated tasks, one requiring working memory and the other selective attention, which were performed by some undergraduates. The ERP results revealed that both congruent and incongruent stimuli in the selective attention task evoked an N400 component, reaching the peak point at around 500 ms. The N400 evoked by incongruent stimuli was more negative than that of congruent, which indicated the difference of semantic N400. Furthermore, working memory load had a significant influence on the N400 evoked by selective attention task in parietal region. And working memory load showed difference in the ERPs of working memory retrieval in central and parietal regions. The ERPs of probe under high working memory load were more positive from 350 to 550 ms post-stimulus; however, stimulus type of selective attention had no influence on working memory retrieval. The present study shows that working memory does not play a major role in the selective attention, especially in ignoring distracter, but it influences the performance of the selective attention as the background. The congruency of target and distracter in the selective attention task does not influence the working memory retrieval.
Nevo, Einat; Bar-Kochva, Irit
This study investigated the relations of early working-memory abilities (phonological and visual-spatial short-term memory [STM] and complex memory and episodic buffer memory) and later developing reading skills. Sixty Hebrew-speaking children were followed from kindergarten through Grade 5. Working memory was tested in kindergarten and reading in…
Mirandola, Chiara; Toffalini, Enrico; Ciriello, Alfonso; Cornoldi, Cesare
Whereas a link between working memory (WM) and memory distortions has been demonstrated, its influence on emotional false memories is unclear. In two experiments, a verbal WM task and a false memory paradigm for negative, positive or neutral events were employed. In Experiment 1, we investigated individual differences in verbal WM and found that the interaction between valence and WM predicted false recognition, with negative and positive material protecting high WM individuals against false remembering; the beneficial effect of negative material disappeared in low WM participants. In Experiment 2, we lowered the WM capacity of half of the participants with a double task request, which led to an overall increase in false memories; furthermore, consistent with Experiment 1, the increase in negative false memories was larger than that of neutral or positive ones. It is concluded that WM plays a critical role in determining false memory production, specifically influencing the processing of negative material.
Antoine, Sophie; Ranzini, Mariagrazia; van Dijck, Jean-Philippe; Slama, Hichem; Bonato, Mario; Tousch, Ann; Dewulf, Myrtille; Bier, Jean-Christophe; Gevers, Wim
Working memory refers to our ability to actively maintain and process a limited amount of information during a brief period of time. Often, not only the information itself but also its serial order is crucial for good task performance. It was recently proposed that serial order is grounded in spatial cognition. Here, we compared performance of a group of right hemisphere-damaged patients with hemispatial neglect to healthy controls in verbal working memory tasks. Participants memorized sequences of consonants at span level and had to judge whether a target consonant belonged to the memorized sequence (item task) or whether a pair of consonants were presented in the same order as in the memorized sequence (order task). In line with this idea that serial order is grounded in spatial cognition, we found that neglect patients made significantly more errors in the order task than in the item task compared to healthy controls. Furthermore, this deficit seemed functionally related to neglect severity and was more frequently observed following right posterior brain damage. Interestingly, this specific impairment for serial order in verbal working memory was not lateralized. We advance the hypotheses of a potential contribution to the deficit of serial order in neglect patients of either or both (1) reduced spatial working memory capacity that enables to keep track of the spatial codes that provide memorized items with a positional context, (2) a spatial compression of these codes in the intact representational space. © 2018 The British Psychological Society.
Keogh, Rebecca; Pearson, Joel
Visual working memory provides an essential link between past and future events. Despite recent efforts, capacity limits, their genesis and the underlying neural structures of visual working memory remain unclear. Here we show that performance in visual working memory - but not iconic visual memory - can be predicted by the strength of mental imagery as assessed with binocular rivalry in a given individual. In addition, for individuals with strong imagery, modulating the background luminance diminished performance on visual working memory and imagery tasks, but not working memory for number strings. This suggests that luminance signals were disrupting sensory-based imagery mechanisms and not a general working memory system. Individuals with poor imagery still performed above chance in the visual working memory task, but their performance was not affected by the background luminance, suggesting a dichotomy in strategies for visual working memory: individuals with strong mental imagery rely on sensory-based imagery to support mnemonic performance, while those with poor imagery rely on different strategies. These findings could help reconcile current controversy regarding the mechanism and location of visual mnemonic storage. PMID:22195024
Full Text Available Visual working memory provides an essential link between past and future events. Despite recent efforts, capacity limits, their genesis and the underlying neural structures of visual working memory remain unclear. Here we show that performance in visual working memory--but not iconic visual memory--can be predicted by the strength of mental imagery as assessed with binocular rivalry in a given individual. In addition, for individuals with strong imagery, modulating the background luminance diminished performance on visual working memory and imagery tasks, but not working memory for number strings. This suggests that luminance signals were disrupting sensory-based imagery mechanisms and not a general working memory system. Individuals with poor imagery still performed above chance in the visual working memory task, but their performance was not affected by the background luminance, suggesting a dichotomy in strategies for visual working memory: individuals with strong mental imagery rely on sensory-based imagery to support mnemonic performance, while those with poor imagery rely on different strategies. These findings could help reconcile current controversy regarding the mechanism and location of visual mnemonic storage.
Keogh, Rebecca; Pearson, Joel
Visual working memory provides an essential link between past and future events. Despite recent efforts, capacity limits, their genesis and the underlying neural structures of visual working memory remain unclear. Here we show that performance in visual working memory--but not iconic visual memory--can be predicted by the strength of mental imagery as assessed with binocular rivalry in a given individual. In addition, for individuals with strong imagery, modulating the background luminance diminished performance on visual working memory and imagery tasks, but not working memory for number strings. This suggests that luminance signals were disrupting sensory-based imagery mechanisms and not a general working memory system. Individuals with poor imagery still performed above chance in the visual working memory task, but their performance was not affected by the background luminance, suggesting a dichotomy in strategies for visual working memory: individuals with strong mental imagery rely on sensory-based imagery to support mnemonic performance, while those with poor imagery rely on different strategies. These findings could help reconcile current controversy regarding the mechanism and location of visual mnemonic storage.
Trübutschek, Darinka; Marti, Sébastien; Ojeda, Andrés; King, Jean-Rémi; Mi, Yuanyuan; Tsodyks, Misha; Dehaene, Stanislas
Working memory and conscious perception are thought to share similar brain mechanisms, yet recent reports of non-conscious working memory challenge this view. Combining visual masking with magnetoencephalography, we investigate the reality of non-conscious working memory and dissect its neural mechanisms. In a spatial delayed-response task, participants reported the location of a subjectively unseen target above chance-level after several seconds. Conscious perception and conscious working memory were characterized by similar signatures: a sustained desynchronization in the alpha/beta band over frontal cortex, and a decodable representation of target location in posterior sensors. During non-conscious working memory, such activity vanished. Our findings contradict models that identify working memory with sustained neural firing, but are compatible with recent proposals of ‘activity-silent’ working memory. We present a theoretical framework and simulations showing how slowly decaying synaptic changes allow cell assemblies to go dormant during the delay, yet be retrieved above chance-level after several seconds. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.23871.001 PMID:28718763
Gotoh, Fumiko; Kikuchi, Tadashi; Olofsson, Ulrich
Previous studies have shown that negatively valenced information impaired working memory performance due to an attention-capturing effect. The present study examined whether negative valence could also facilitate working memory. Affective words (negative, neutral, positive) were used as retro-cues in a working memory task that required participants to remember colors at different spatial locations on a computer screen. Following the cue, a target detection task was used to either shift attention to a different location or keep attention at the same location as the retro-cue. Finally, participants were required to discriminate the cued color from a set of distractors. It was found that negative cues yielded shorter response times (RTs) in the attention-shift condition and longer RTs in the attention-stay condition, compared with neutral and positive cues. The results suggest that negative affective valence may enhance working memory performance (RTs), provided that attention can be disengaged.
Salmela, V R; Moisala, M; Alho, K
A common assumption in the working memory literature is that the visual and auditory modalities have separate and independent memory stores. Recent evidence on visual working memory has suggested that resources are shared between representations, and that the precision of representations sets the limit for memory performance. We tested whether memory resources are also shared across sensory modalities. Memory precision for two visual (spatial frequency and orientation) and two auditory (pitch and tone duration) features was measured separately for each feature and for all possible feature combinations. Thus, only the memory load was varied, from one to four features, while keeping the stimuli similar. In Experiment 1, two gratings and two tones-both containing two varying features-were presented simultaneously. In Experiment 2, two gratings and two tones-each containing only one varying feature-were presented sequentially. The memory precision (delayed discrimination threshold) for a single feature was close to the perceptual threshold. However, as the number of features to be remembered was increased, the discrimination thresholds increased more than twofold. Importantly, the decrease in memory precision did not depend on the modality of the other feature(s), or on whether the features were in the same or in separate objects. Hence, simultaneously storing one visual and one auditory feature had an effect on memory precision equal to those of simultaneously storing two visual or two auditory features. The results show that working memory is limited by the precision of the stored representations, and that working memory can be described as a resource pool that is shared across modalities.
Henry, Lucy A.; Botting, Nicola
Children with developmental language impairments (DLI) are often reported to show difficulties with working memory. This review describes the four components of the well-established working memory model, and considers whether there is convincing evidence for difficulties within each component in children with DLI. The emphasis is on the most…
Jansson, Maria; Wendt, Maria; Ase, Cecilia
In this article, we present the results of a research project where we have tried to elaborate more socially inclusive ways of teaching and learning political science by making use of a specific feminist method of analyzing social relations--memory work. As a method, memory work involves writing and interpreting stories of personal experience,…
Perry, Tracy L.; Malaia, Evguenia
For any complex mental task, people rely on working memory. Working memory capacity (WMC) is one predictor of success in learning. Historically, attempts to improve verbal WM through training have not been effective. This study provided elementary students with WM consolidation efficiency training to answer the question, Can reading comprehension…
St. Clair-Thompson, Helen L.
Previous research has suggested that working memory difficulties play an integral role in children's underachievement at school. However, working memory is just one of several executive functions. The extent to which problems in working memory extend to other executive functions is not well understood. In the current study 38 children with a poor…
Hu, Xiao-Yun; Jing, Jin; Fan, Miao; Yang, De-Sheng; Zhu, Yan-Na; Chen, Ling; Li, Xiu-Hong
To explore the abilities of verbal and visual-spatial memory in Chinese children with developmental dyslexia. Thirty-two children with developmental dyslexia (aged 8-12 years) and thirty-nine age- and gender-matched normal children were involved in the study. Their verbal short-term and verbal working memories were measured using the digit ordering and the digit span tests, respectively. Their visual-spatial short-term and visual-spatial working memories were examined using the forward and backward block-tapping tests, respectively. The DD children scored lower in the digit ordering and the digit span tests than the control children (P<0.05). The scores for the forward and backward block-tapping tests did not vary between the two groups (P>0.05). The children with DD have the deficits in both verbal short-term memory and verbal working memory.
The analysis of spatial learning and memory in rodents is commonly used to investigate the mechanisms underlying certain forms of human cognition and to model their dysfunction in neuropsychiatric and neurodegenerative diseases. Proper interpretation of rodent behavior in terms of spatial memory and as a model of human cognitive functions is only possible if various navigation strategies and factors controlling the performance of the animal in a spatial task are taken into consideration. The aim of this review is to describe the experimental approaches that are being used for the study of spatial memory in rats and mice and the way that they can be interpreted in terms of general memory functions. After an introduction to the classification of memory into various categories and respective underlying neuroanatomical substrates, I explain the concept of spatial memory and its measurement in rats and mice by analysis of their navigation strategies. Subsequently, I describe the most common paradigms for spatial memory assessment with specific focus on methodological issues relevant for the correct interpretation of the results in terms of cognitive function. Finally, I present recent advances in the use of spatial memory tasks to investigate episodic-like memory in mice.
Motes, Michael A.; Hubbard, Timothy L.; Courtney, Jon R.; Rypma, Bart
Research has shown that spatial memory for moving targets is often biased in the direction of implied momentum and implied gravity, suggesting that representations of the subjective experiences of these physical principles contribute to such biases. The present study examined the association between these spatial memory biases. Observers viewed…
Swanson, H L; Berninger, V W
The purpose of this research is to address (a) whether individual differences in working memory (WM) and writing are related to a general or process-specific system, (b) whether WM tasks operate independently of phonological short-term memory (STM) on measures of writing and reading, and (c) whether working memory predicts variance in writing beyond that predicted by reading alone. The present study correlated several WM and phonological STM measures with writing and reading measures. The study showed among the memory measures that a four-factor model reflecting phonological STM, verbal WM span, executive processing, and visual-spatial WM span best fit the multivariate data set. Working memory was correlated significantly with a number of writing measures, particularly those related to text generation. WM measures contributed unique variance to writing that was independent of reading skill, and STM measures best predicted transcription processes and reading recognition, whereas WM measures best predicted text generation and reading comprehension. Both verbal and visual-spatial working memory measures predicted reading comprehension, whereas only WM measures that reflect executive processing significantly predicted writing. In general, the results suggest that individual differences in children's writing reflect a specific capacity system, whereas reading comprehension draws upon a multiple capacity system.
Kumar, Sukhbinder; Joseph, Sabine; Gander, Phillip E; Barascud, Nicolas; Halpern, Andrea R; Griffiths, Timothy D
The brain basis for auditory working memory, the process of actively maintaining sounds in memory over short periods of time, is controversial. Using functional magnetic resonance imaging in human participants, we demonstrate that the maintenance of single tones in memory is associated with activation in auditory cortex. In addition, sustained activation was observed in hippocampus and inferior frontal gyrus. Multivoxel pattern analysis showed that patterns of activity in auditory cortex and left inferior frontal gyrus distinguished the tone that was maintained in memory. Functional connectivity during maintenance was demonstrated between auditory cortex and both the hippocampus and inferior frontal cortex. The data support a system for auditory working memory based on the maintenance of sound-specific representations in auditory cortex by projections from higher-order areas, including the hippocampus and frontal cortex. In this work, we demonstrate a system for maintaining sound in working memory based on activity in auditory cortex, hippocampus, and frontal cortex, and functional connectivity among them. Specifically, our work makes three advances from the previous work. First, we robustly demonstrate hippocampal involvement in all phases of auditory working memory (encoding, maintenance, and retrieval): the role of hippocampus in working memory is controversial. Second, using a pattern classification technique, we show that activity in the auditory cortex and inferior frontal gyrus is specific to the maintained tones in working memory. Third, we show long-range connectivity of auditory cortex to hippocampus and frontal cortex, which may be responsible for keeping such representations active during working memory maintenance. Copyright © 2016 Kumar et al.
Ricardo Basso Garcia
Visuospatial working memory (VSWM) comprises specialised subsystems devoted to storage of visual features and spatial locations. Recently, research has been focused on understanding feature binding in memory and how bound objects are temporarily held in working memory. In the current thesis we have addressed two broad questions: What is the nature of bound visual representations in working memory? Is there a specific deficit in binding in individuals with learning difficulties? In Study 1, yo...
Rosati, Alexandra G; Hare, Brian
Spatial cognition and memory are critical cognitive skills underlying foraging behaviors for all primates. While the emergence of these skills has been the focus of much research on human children, little is known about ontogenetic patterns shaping spatial cognition in other species. Comparative developmental studies of nonhuman apes can illuminate which aspects of human spatial development are shared with other primates, versus which aspects are unique to our lineage. Here we present three studies examining spatial memory development in our closest living relatives, chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes) and bonobos (P. paniscus). We first compared memory in a naturalistic foraging task where apes had to recall the location of resources hidden in a large outdoor enclosure with a variety of landmarks (Studies 1 and 2). We then compared older apes using a matched memory choice paradigm (Study 3). We found that chimpanzees exhibited more accurate spatial memory than bonobos across contexts, supporting predictions from these species' different feeding ecologies. Furthermore, chimpanzees - but not bonobos - showed developmental improvements in spatial memory, indicating that bonobos exhibit cognitive paedomorphism (delays in developmental timing) in their spatial abilities relative to chimpanzees. Together, these results indicate that the development of spatial memory may differ even between closely related species. Moreover, changes in the spatial domain can emerge during nonhuman ape ontogeny, much like some changes seen in human children. © 2012 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.
Weiss, Atalia H; Biron, Tali; Lieder, Itay; Granot, Roni Y; Ahissar, Merav
Musicians' perceptual advantage in the acoustic domain is well established. Recent studies show that musicians' verbal working memory is also superior. Additionally, some studies report that musicians' visuospatial skills are enhanced although others failed to find this enhancement. We now examined whether musicians' spatial vision is superior, and if so, whether this superiority reflects refined visual skills or a general superiority of working memory. We examined spatial frequency discrimination among musicians and nonmusician university students using two presentation conditions: simultaneous (spatial forced choice) and sequential (temporal forced choice). Musicians' performance was similar to that of nonmusicians in the simultaneous condition. However, their performance in the sequential condition was superior, suggesting an advantage only when stimuli need to be retained, i.e., working memory. Moreover, the two groups showed a different pattern of correlations: Musicians' visual thresholds were correlated, and neither was correlated with their verbal memory. By contrast, among nonmusicians, the visual thresholds were not correlated, but sequential thresholds were correlated with verbal memory scores, suggesting that a general working memory component limits their performance in this condition. We propose that musicians' superiority in spatial frequency discrimination reflects an advantage in a domain-general aspect of working memory rather than a general enhancement in spatial-visual skills. © 2014 ARVO.
Coppola, Vincent J; Flaim, Mary E; Carney, Samantha N; Bingman, Verner P
Age-related memory decline in mammals has been well documented. By contrast, very little is known about memory decline in birds as they age. In the current study we trained younger and older homing pigeons on a reference memory task in which a goal location could be encoded by spatial and feature cues. Consistent with a previous working memory study, the results revealed impaired acquisition of combined spatial-feature reference memory in older compared to younger pigeons. Following memory acquisition, we used cue-conflict probe trials to provide an initial assessment of possible age-related differences in cue preference. Both younger and older pigeons displayed a similarly modest preference for feature over spatial cues. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Redick, Thomas S.; Shipstead, Zach; Wiemers, Elizabeth A.; Melby-Lervåg, Monica; Hulme, Charles
Working memory training programs have generated great interest, with claims that the training interventions can have profound beneficial effects on children's academic and intellectual attainment. We describe the criteria by which to evaluate evidence for or against the benefit of working memory training. Despite the promising results of initial…
Alloway, Tracy Packiam
Working memory plays a key role in supporting children's learning over the school years, and beyond this into adulthood. It is proposed here that working memory is crucially required to store information while other material is being mentally manipulated during the classroom learning activities that form the foundations for the acquisition of…
Pan, Yi; Cheng, Qiu-Ping; Luo, Qian-Ying
We demonstrate that unconscious processing of a stimulus property can be enhanced when there is a match between the contents of working memory and the stimulus presented in the visual field. Participants first held a cue (a colored circle) in working memory and then searched for a brief masked target shape presented simultaneously with a distractor shape. When participants reported having no awareness of the target shape at all, search performance was more accurate in the valid condition, where the target matched the cue in color, than in the neutral condition, where the target mismatched the cue. This effect cannot be attributed to bottom-up perceptual priming from the presentation of a memory cue, because unconscious perception was not enhanced when the cue was merely perceptually identified but not actively held in working memory. These findings suggest that reentrant feedback from the contents of working memory modulates unconscious visual perception.
Harrison, Tyler L; Shipstead, Zach; Hicks, Kenny L; Hambrick, David Z; Redick, Thomas S; Engle, Randall W
Working memory is a critical element of complex cognition, particularly under conditions of distraction and interference. Measures of working memory capacity correlate positively with many measures of real-world cognition, including fluid intelligence. There have been numerous attempts to use training procedures to increase working memory capacity and thereby performance on the real-world tasks that rely on working memory capacity. In the study reported here, we demonstrated that training on complex working memory span tasks leads to improvement on similar tasks with different materials but that such training does not generalize to measures of fluid intelligence.
Schwarb, Hillary; Nail, Jayde; Schumacher, Eric H
Since antiquity, philosophers, theologians, and scientists have been interested in human memory. However, researchers today are still working to understand the capabilities, boundaries, and architecture. While the storage capabilities of long-term memory are seemingly unlimited (Bahrick, J Exp Psychol 113:1-2, 1984), working memory, or the ability to maintain and manipulate information held in memory, seems to have stringent capacity limits (e.g., Cowan, Behav Brain Sci 24:87-185, 2001). Individual differences, however, do exist and these differences can often predict performance on a wide variety of tasks (cf. Engle What is working-memory capacity? 297-314, 2001). Recently, researchers have promoted the enticing possibility that simple behavioral training can expand the limits of working memory which indeed may also lead to improvements on other cognitive processes as well (cf. Morrison and Chein, Psychol Bull Rev 18:46-60 2011). However, initial investigations across a wide variety of cognitive functions have produced mixed results regarding the transferability of training-related improvements. Across two experiments, the present research focuses on the benefit of working memory training on visual short-term memory capacity-a cognitive process that has received little attention in the training literature. Data reveal training-related improvement of global measures of visual short-term memory as well as of measures of the independent sub-processes that contribute to capacity (Awh et al., Psychol Sci 18(7):622-628, 2007). These results suggest that the ability to inhibit irrelevant information within and between trials is enhanced via n-back training allowing for selective improvement on untrained tasks. Additionally, we highlight a potential limitation of the standard adaptive training procedure and propose a modified design to ensure variability in the training environment.
Schuchardt, Kirsten; Maehler, Claudia; Hasselhorn, Marcus
This article examines working memory functioning in children with specific developmental disorders of scholastic skills as defined by ICD-10. Ninety-seven second to fourth graders with a minimum IQ of 80 are compared using a 2 x 2 factorial (dyscalculia vs. no dyscalculia; dyslexia vs. no dyslexia) design. An extensive test battery assesses the three subcomponents of working memory described by Baddeley (1986): phonological loop, visual-spatial sketchpad, and central executive. Children with dyscalculia show deficits in visual-spatial memory; children with dyslexia show deficits in phonological and central executive functioning. When controlling for the influence of the phonological loop on the performance of the central executive, however, the effect is no longer significant. Although children with both reading and arithmetic disorders are consistently outperformed by all other groups, there is no significant interaction between the factors dyscalculia and dyslexia.
Ricker, Timothy J.; Cowan, Nelson
Understanding forgetting from working memory, the memory used in ongoing cognitive processing, is critical to understanding human cognition. In the past decade, a number of conflicting findings have been reported regarding the role of time in forgetting from working memory. This has led to a debate concerning whether longer retention intervals…
Ekstrom, Arne D.; Bookheimer, Susan Y.
Imaging, electrophysiological studies, and lesion work have shown that the medial temporal lobe (MTL) is important for episodic memory; however, it is unclear whether different MTL regions support the spatial, temporal, and item elements of episodic memory. In this study we used fMRI to examine retrieval performance emphasizing different aspects…
Lidiomar José Mascarello
This work consists of a systematic review of the literature on working memory. Researches, including the ones developed by George Miller (1956) and Paul Carrillo-Mora (2010) have shown that working memory is involved in remembering visual and spatial information, as well as in cognitive activities and in planning strategies. In the present article, we first examine some important facts in the history of research about working memory. After that, we analyze works published from 2001 to 2011 ...
Bialkova, S.E.; Oberauer, K.
Abstract. In two experiments participants held in working memory (WM) three digits in three different colors, and updated individual digits with the results of arithmetic equations presented in one of the colors. In the memory-access condition, a digit from WM had to be used as the first number in
Baddeley, A. D.; Hitch, G. J.; Allen, R. J.
A series of experiments explored whether chunking in short-term memory for verbal materials depends on attentionally limited executive processes. Secondary tasks were used to disrupt components of working memory and chunking was indexed by the sentence superiority effect, whereby immediate recall is better for sentences than word lists. To…
Rajsic, Jason; Swan, Garrett; Wilson, Daryl E.; Pratt, Jay
In this article, we demonstrate limitations of accessibility of information in visual working memory (VWM). Recently, cued-recall has been used to estimate the fidelity of information in VWM, where the feature of a cued object is reproduced from memory (Bays, Catalao, & Husain, 2009; Wilken & Ma, 2004; Zhang & Luck, 2008). Response…
Antonides, Rémy; Wester, Arie J.; Kessels, Roy P. C.
Spatial memory is crucial to our daily lives and in part strongly depends on automatic, implicit memory processes. This study investigates the neurocognitive basis of conscious and unconscious influences of object–location memory in amnesic patients with Korsakoff’s syndrome (N = 23) and healthy controls (N = 18) using a process-dissociation procedure in a computerized spatial memory task. As expected, the patients performed substantially worse on the conscious memory measures but showed even slightly stronger effects of unconscious influences than the controls. Moreover, a delayed test administered after 1 week revealed a strong decline in conscious influences in the patients, while unconscious influences were not affected. The presented results suggest that conscious and unconscious influences of spatial memory can be clearly dissociated in Korsakoff’s syndrome. PMID:18560813
Arthur, Joeanna C.; Philbeck, John W.; Kleene, Nicholas J.; Chichka, David
Angular path integration refers to the ability to maintain an estimate of self-location after a rotational displacement by integrating internally-generated (idiothetic) self-motion signals over time. Previous work has found that non-sensory inputs, namely spatial memory, can play a powerful role in angular path integration (Arthur et al., 2007, 2009). Here we investigated the conditions under which spatial memory facilitates angular path integration. We hypothesized that the benefit of spatia...
Brown, Thackery I.; Stern, Chantal E.
Many life experiences share information with other memories. In order to make decisions based on overlapping memories, we need to distinguish between experiences to determine the appropriate behavior for the current situation. Previous work suggests that the medial temporal lobe (MTL) and medial caudate interact to support the retrieval of overlapping navigational memories in different contexts. The present study used functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) in humans to test the prediction that the MTL and medial caudate play complementary roles in learning novel mazes that cross paths with, and must be distinguished from, previously learned routes. During fMRI scanning, participants navigated virtual routes that were well learned from prior training while also learning new mazes. Critically, some routes learned during scanning shared hallways with those learned during pre-scan training. Overlap between mazes required participants to use contextual cues to select between alternative behaviors. Results demonstrated parahippocampal cortex activity specific for novel spatial cues that distinguish between overlapping routes. The hippocampus and medial caudate were active for learning overlapping spatial memories, and increased their activity for previously learned routes when they became context dependent. Our findings provide novel evidence that the MTL and medial caudate play complementary roles in the learning, updating, and execution of context-dependent navigational behaviors. PMID:23448868
Johnson, Elizabeth L; Dewar, Callum D; Solbakk, Anne-Kristin; Endestad, Tor; Meling, Torstein R; Knight, Robert T
The ability to represent and select information in working memory provides the neurobiological infrastructure for human cognition. For 80 years, dominant views of working memory have focused on the key role of prefrontal cortex (PFC) [1-8]. However, more recent work has implicated posterior cortical regions [9-12], suggesting that PFC engagement during working memory is dependent on the degree of executive demand. We provide evidence from neurological patients with discrete PFC damage that challenges the dominant models attributing working memory to PFC-dependent systems. We show that neural oscillations, which provide a mechanism for PFC to communicate with posterior cortical regions , independently subserve communications both to and from PFC-uncovering parallel oscillatory mechanisms for working memory. Fourteen PFC patients and 20 healthy, age-matched controls performed a working memory task where they encoded, maintained, and actively processed information about pairs of common shapes. In controls, the electroencephalogram (EEG) exhibited oscillatory activity in the low-theta range over PFC and directional connectivity from PFC to parieto-occipital regions commensurate with executive processing demands. Concurrent alpha-beta oscillations were observed over parieto-occipital regions, with directional connectivity from parieto-occipital regions to PFC, regardless of processing demands. Accuracy, PFC low-theta activity, and PFC → parieto-occipital connectivity were attenuated in patients, revealing a PFC-independent, alpha-beta system. The PFC patients still demonstrated task proficiency, which indicates that the posterior alpha-beta system provides sufficient resources for working memory. Taken together, our findings reveal neurologically dissociable PFC and parieto-occipital systems and suggest that parallel, bidirectional oscillatory systems form the basis of working memory. Copyright © 2017 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd.. All rights reserved.
Nemes, V A; Whitaker, D; Heron, J; McKeefry, D J
Current models of short-term visual perceptual memory invoke mechanisms that are closely allied to low-level perceptual discrimination mechanisms. The purpose of this study was to investigate the extent to which human visual perceptual memory for spatial frequency is based upon multiple, spatially tuned channels similar to those found in the earliest stages of visual processing. To this end we measured how performance on a delayed spatial frequency discrimination paradigm was affected by the introduction of interfering or 'memory masking' stimuli of variable spatial frequency during the delay period. Masking stimuli were shown to induce shifts in the points of subjective equality (PSE) when their spatial frequencies were within a bandwidth of 1.2 octaves of the reference spatial frequency. When mask spatial frequencies differed by more than this value, there was no change in the PSE from baseline levels. This selective pattern of masking was observed for different spatial frequencies and demonstrates the existence of multiple, spatially tuned mechanisms in visual perceptual memory. Memory masking effects were also found to occur for horizontal separations of up to 6 deg between the masking and test stimuli and lacked any orientation selectivity. These findings add further support to the view that low-level sensory processing mechanisms form the basis for the retention of spatial frequency information in perceptual memory. However, the broad range of transfer of memory masking effects across spatial location and other dimensions indicates more long range, long duration interactions between spatial frequency channels that are likely to rely contributions from neural processes located in higher visual areas. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Lamp, Gemma; Alexander, Bonnie; Laycock, Robin; Crewther, David P; Crewther, Sheila G
Mapping of the underlying neural mechanisms of visuo-spatial working memory (WM) has been shown to consistently elicit activity in right hemisphere dominant fronto-parietal networks. However to date, the bulk of neuroimaging literature has focused largely on the maintenance aspect of visuo-spatial WM, with a scarcity of research into the aspects of WM involving manipulation of information. Thus, this study aimed to compare maintenance-only with maintenance and manipulation of visuo-spatial stimuli (3D cube shapes) utilizing a 1-back task while functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) scans were acquired. Sixteen healthy participants (9 women, M = 23.94 years, SD = 2.49) were required to perform the 1-back task with or without mentally rotating the shapes 90° on a vertical axis. When no rotation was required (maintenance-only condition), a right hemispheric lateralization was revealed across fronto-parietal areas. However, when the task involved maintaining and manipulating the same stimuli through 90° rotation, activation was primarily seen in the bilateral parietal lobe and left fusiform gyrus. The findings confirm that the well-established right lateralized fronto-parietal networks are likely to underlie simple maintenance of visuo-spatial stimuli. The results also suggest that the added demand of manipulation of information maintained online appears to require further neural recruitment of functionally related areas. In particular mental rotation of visuospatial stimuli required bilateral parietal areas, and the left fusiform gyrus potentially to maintain a categorical or object representation. It can be concluded that WM is a complex neural process involving the interaction of an increasingly large network.
Mi, Yuanyuan; Katkov, Mikhail; Tsodyks, Misha
Psychological studies indicate that human ability to keep information in readily accessible working memory is limited to four items for most people. This extremely low capacity severely limits execution of many cognitive tasks, but its neuronal underpinnings remain unclear. Here we show that in the framework of synaptic theory of working memory, capacity can be analytically estimated to scale with characteristic time of short-term synaptic depression relative to synaptic current time constant. The number of items in working memory can be regulated by external excitation, enabling the system to be tuned to the desired load and to clear the working memory of currently held items to make room for new ones. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
First, these results reveal a neurotopography of OWM lesion sites that is well-aligned with results from neuroimaging of orthographic working memory in neurally intact participants (Rapp & Dufor, 2011. Second, the dorsal neurotopography of the OWM lesion overlap is clearly distinct from what has been reported for lesions associated with either lexical or sublexical deficits (e.g., Henry, Beeson, Stark, & Rapcsak, 2007; Rapcsak & Beeson, 2004; these have, respectively, been identified with the inferior occipital/temporal and superior temporal/inferior parietal regions. These neurotopographic distinctions support the claims of the computational distinctiveness of long-term vs. working memory operations. The specific lesion loci raise a number of questions to be discussed regarding: (a the selectivity of these regions and associated deficits to orthographic working memory vs. working memory more generally (b the possibility that different lesion sub-regions may correspond to different components of the OWM system.
Matthews, Natasha L; Collins, Kathleen P; Thakkar, Katharine N; Park, Sohee
The ability to form mental images that reconstruct former perceptual experiences is closely related to working memory (WM) ability. However, whereas WM deficits are established as a core feature of schizophrenia, an independent body of work suggests that mental imagery ability is enhanced in the disorder. Across two experiments we investigated mental imagery in schizophrenia and its relationship with WM. In Experiment 1, individuals with schizophrenia (SZ: n=15) and matched controls (CO: n=14) completed a mental imagery generation and inspection task and a spatial delayed-response WM task. In Experiment 2, SZ (n=16) and CO (n=16) completed a novel version of the mental imagery task modified to increase WM maintenance demand. In Experiment 1, SZ demonstrated enhanced mental imagery performance, as evidenced by faster response times relative to CO, with preserved accuracy. However, enhanced mental imagery in SZ was accompanied by impaired WM as assessed by the delayed-response task. In Experiment 2, when WM maintenance load was increased, SZ no longer showed superior imagery performance. We found evidence for enhanced imagery manipulation in SZ despite their WM maintenance deficit. However, this imagery enhancement was abolished when WM maintenance demands were increased. This profile of enhanced imagery manipulation but impaired maintenance could be used to implement novel remediation strategies in the disorder.
Robin, Jessica; Wynn, Jordana; Moscovitch, Morris
Events always unfold in a spatial context, leading to the claim that it serves as a scaffold for encoding and retrieving episodic memories. The ubiquitous co-occurrence of spatial context with events may induce participants to generate a spatial context when hearing scenarios of events in which it is absent. Spatial context should also serve as an…
Apter, Brian J. B.
A critical review of working memory training research during the last 10 years is provided. Particular attention is given to research that has attempted to investigate the efficacy of commercially marketed computerised training programmes such as "Cogmed" and "Jungle Memory". Claimed benefits are questioned on the basis that research methodologies…
Oberauer Klaus; Hein Laura
Working memory retains information and makes it available for processing. People often need to hold several chunks of information available while concentrating on only one of them. This process requires selective attention to the contents of working memory. In this article we summarize evidence for both a broad focus of attention with a capacity of approximately four chunks and a narrow focus of attention that selects a single chunk at a time.
Legrain, Valéry; Crombez, Geert; Plaghki, Léon; Mouraux, André
Because pain often signals the occurrence of potential tissue damage, nociceptive stimuli have the capacity to capture attention and interfere with ongoing cognitive activities. Working memory is known to guide the orientation of attention by maintaining goal priorities active during the achievement of a task. This study investigated whether the cortical processing of nociceptive stimuli and their ability to capture attention are under the control of working memory. Event-related brain potentials (ERPs) were recorded while participants performed primary tasks on visual targets that required or did not require rehearsal in working memory (1-back vs 0-back conditions). The visual targets were shortly preceded by task-irrelevant tactile stimuli. Occasionally, in order to distract the participants, the tactile stimuli were replaced by novel nociceptive stimuli. In the 0-back conditions, task performance was disrupted by the occurrence of the nociceptive distracters, as reflected by the increased reaction times in trials with novel nociceptive distracters as compared to trials with standard tactile distracters. In the 1-back conditions, such a difference disappeared suggesting that attentional capture and task disruption induced by nociceptive distracters were suppressed by working memory, regardless of task demands. Most importantly, in the conditions involving working memory, the magnitude of nociceptive ERPs, including ERP components at early latency, were significantly reduced. This indicates that working memory is able to modulate the cortical processing of nociceptive input already at its earliest stages, and could explain why working memory reduces consequently ability of nociceptive stimuli to capture attention and disrupt performance of the primary task. It is concluded that protecting cognitive processing against pain interference is best guaranteed by keeping out of working memory pain-related information. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Meyer, Meghan Leigh
The social world is incredibly complex and the ability to keep track of various pieces of social information at once is imperative for success as a social species. Yet, how humans manage social information in mind has to date remained a mystery. On the one hand, psychological models of working memory, or the ability to maintain and manipulate information in mind, suggest that managing social information in mind would rely on generic working memory processes. However, recent research in social...
Full Text Available Episodic memory in human brain is not a fixed 2-D picture but a highly dynamic movie serial, integrating information at both the temporal and the spatial domains. Recent studies in neuroscience reveal that memory storage and recall are closely related to the activities in discrete memory engram (trace neurons within the dentate gyrus region of hippocampus and the layer 2/3 of neocortex. More strikingly, optogenetic reactivation of those memory trace neurons is able to trigger the recall of naturally encoded memory. It is still unknown how the discrete memory traces encode and reactivate the memory. Considering a particular memory normally represents a natural event, which consists of information at both the temporal and spatial domains, it is unknown how the discrete trace neurons could reconstitute such enriched information in the brain. Furthermore, as the optogenetic-stimuli induced recall of memory did not depend on firing pattern of the memory traces, it is most likely that the spatial activation pattern, but not the temporal activation pattern of the discrete memory trace neurons encodes the memory in the brain. How does the neural circuit convert the activities in the spatial domain into the temporal domain to reconstitute memory of a natural event? By reviewing the literature, here we present how the memory engram (trace neurons are selected and consolidated in the brain. Then, we will discuss the main challenges in the memory trace theory. In the end, we will provide a plausible model of memory trace cell network, underlying the conversion of neural activities between the spatial domain and the temporal domain. We will also discuss on how the activation of sparse memory trace neurons might trigger the replay of neural activities in specific temporal patterns.
Ederaldo José Lopes
Full Text Available O objetivo deste trabalho foi avaliar os mecanismos de processamento da informação viso-espacial em crianças. Setenta e oito crianças participaram do experimento em que foram manipulados os fatores idade, posição espacial, similaridade visual e cor dos estímulos memorizados. Os resultados mostraram que todos os fatores principais alcançaram significância estatística. As crianças mais velhas tiveram uma freqüência de acertos maior que as crianças mais novas. Os estímulos dos conjuntos com similaridade baixa foram mais bem recordados que os estímulos com similaridade alta. A taxa de recordação foi melhor nas provas em que as letras de um conjunto foram todas apresentadas com a mesma cor, assim como a porcentagem de respostas corretas variou de forma significativa em função da posição espacial dos estímulos. Os resultados foram interpretados de acordo com modelos que enfatizam aspectos do desenvolvimento de estratégias cognitivas ao longo do desenvolvimento humano, especialmente o modelo de memória de trabalho.This study aimed to evaluate the mechanisms of visual-spatial memory in children. Seventy eight children took part in an experiment with four factors: children's age, stimuli spatial position, stimuli visual similarity, stimuli set color. The results have shown that all main factors are statistically meaningful. The oldest children presented a better performance than the youngest ones. Stimuli set formed by low similarity letters were better recollected than the stimuli set formed by high similarity letters. The recall of the spatial position of letters was better in trials where the letters of a set were presented in the same color. The percentage of correct recall changed meaningfully as a function of the spatial position in which the target had been presented. The results were interpreted according to models that emphasize aspects of development of cognitive strategies along with the human development, especially
Furley, Philip; Memmert, Daniel
Individual differences in visuospatial abilities were investigated in experienced basketball players compared with nonathletes. Most research shows that experts and novices do not differ on basic cognitive ability tests. Nevertheless, there are some equivocal findings indicating there are differences in basic cognitive abilities such as attention. The goal of the present research was to investigate team-ball athletes in regard to their visuospatial abilities. 112 male college students (54 basketball players, 58 nonathlete college students) were tested in their spatial capacity with the Corsi Block-tapping Task. No differences in spatial capacity were evident between basketball players and nonathlete college students. The results are discussed in the context of the expert performance approach and individual difference research.
Karlsen, Paul Johan; Allen, Richard J; Baddeley, Alan D; Hitch, Graham J
Recent studies of visual short-term memory have suggested that the binding of features such as color and shape into remembered objects is relatively automatic. A series of seven experiments broadened this investigation by comparing the immediate retention of colored shapes with performance when color and shape were separated either spatially or temporally, with participants required actively to form the bound object. Attentional load was manipulated with a demanding concurrent task, and retention in working memory was then tested using a single recognition probe. Both spatial and temporal separation of features tended to impair performance, as did the concurrent task. There was, however, no evidence for greater attentional disruption of performance as a result of either spatial or temporal separation of features. Implications for the process of binding in visual working memory are discussed, and an interpretation is offered in terms of the episodic buffer component of working memory, which is assumed to be a passive store capable of holding bound objects, but not of performing the binding.
Full Text Available The aim of the present study was to evaluate the effect of melatonin as an antioxidant on spatial navigation memory in male diabetic rats. Thirty-two male white Wistar rats weighing 200 ± 20 g were divided into four groups, randomly: control, melatonin, diabetic and melatonin-treated diabetic. Experimental diabetes was induced by intraperitoneal injection of 50 mg kg-1 streptozotocin. Melatonin was injected (10 mg kg-1 day-1, ip for 2 weeks after 21 days of diabetes induction. At the end of administration period, the spatial navigation memory of rats was evaluated by cross-arm maze. In this study lipid peroxidation levels, glutathione-peroxidase and catalase activities were measured in hippocampus. Diabetes caused to significant decrease in alternation percent in the cross-arm maze, as a spatial memory index, compared to the control group (p < 0.05, whereas administration of melatonin prevented the spatial memory deficit in diabetic rats. Also melatonin injection significantly increased the spatial memory in intact animals compared to the control group (p < 0.05. Assessment of hippocampus homogenates indicated an increase in lipid peroxidation levels and a decrease in GSH-Px and CAT activities in the diabetic group compared to the control animals, while melatonin administration ameliorated these indices in diabetic rats. In conclusion, diabetes induction leads to debilitation of spatial navigation memory in rats, and the melatonin treatment improves the memory presumably through the reduction of oxidative stress in hippocampus of diabetic rats.
Leding, Juliana K
The relationship between working memory capacity (WMC) and false memories in the memory conjunction paradigm was explored. Previous research using other paradigms has shown that individuals high in WMC are not as likely to experience false memories as low-WMC individuals, the explanation being that high-WMC individuals are better able to engage in source monitoring. In the memory conjunction paradigm participants are presented at study with parent words (e.g., eyeglasses, whiplash). At test, in addition to being presented with targets and foils, participants are presented with lures that are composed of previously studied features (e.g., eyelash). It was found that high-WMC individuals had lower levels of false recognition than low-WMC individuals. Furthermore, recall-to-reject responses were analysed (e.g., "I know I didn't see eyelash because I remember seeing eyeglasses") and it was found that high-WMC individuals were more likely to utilise this memory editing strategy, providing direct evidence that one reason that high-WMC individuals are not as prone to false memories is because they are better able to engage in source monitoring.
Mızrak, Eda; Öztekin, Ilke
The speed-accuracy trade-off (SAT) procedure was used to investigate the relationship between working memory capacity (WMC) and the dynamics of temporal order memory retrieval. High- and low-span participants (HSs, LSs) studied sequentially presented five-item lists, followed by two probes from the study list. Participants indicated the more recent probe. Overall, accuracy was higher for HSs compared to LSs. Crucially, in contrast to previous investigations that observed no impact of WMC on speed of access to item information in memory (e.g., Öztekin & McElree, 2010), recovery of temporal order memory was slower for LSs. While accessing an item's representation in memory can be direct, recovery of relational information such as temporal order information requires a more controlled serial memory search. Collectively, these data indicate that WMC effects are particularly prominent during high demands of cognitive control, such as serial search operations necessary to access temporal order information from memory. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Sobczak-Edmans, M; Ng, T H B; Chan, Y C; Chew, E; Chuang, K H; Chen, S H A
The involvement of the human cerebellum in working memory has been well established in the last decade. However, the cerebro-cerebellar network for visual working memory is not as well defined. Our previous fMRI study showed superior and inferior cerebellar activations during a block design visual working memory task, but specific cerebellar contributions to cognitive processes in encoding, maintenance and retrieval have not yet been established. The current study examined cerebellar contributions to each of the components of visual working memory and presence of cerebellar hemispheric laterality was investigated. 40 young adults performed a Sternberg visual working memory task during fMRI scanning using a parametric paradigm. The contrast between high and low memory load during each phase was examined. We found that the most prominent activation was observed in vermal lobule VIIIb and bilateral lobule VI during encoding. Using a quantitative laterality index, we found that left-lateralized activation of lobule VIIIa was present in the encoding phase. In the maintenance phase, there was bilateral lobule VI and right-lateralized lobule VIIb activity. Changes in activation in right lobule VIIIa were present during the retrieval phase. The current results provide evidence that superior and inferior cerebellum contributes to visual working memory, with a tendency for left-lateralized activations in the inferior cerebellum during encoding and right-lateralized lobule VIIb activations during maintenance. The results of the study are in agreement with Baddeley's multi-component working memory model, but also suggest that stored visual representations are additionally supported by maintenance mechanisms that may employ verbal coding. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
James Alexander Ainge
Full Text Available Spatial memory is a well characterised psychological function in both humans and rodents. The combined computations of a network of systems including place cells in the hippocampus, grid cells in the medial entorhinal cortex and head direction cells found in numerous structures in the brain have been suggested to form the neural instantiation of the cognitive map as first described by Tolman in 1948. However, while our understanding of the neural mechanisms underlying spatial representations in adults is relatively sophisticated, we know substantially less about how this network develops in young animals. In this article we review studies examining the developmental timescale that these systems follow. Electrophysiological recordings from very young rats show that directional information is at adult levels at the outset of navigational experience. The systems supporting allocentric memory, however, take longer to mature. This is consistent with behavioural studies of young rats which show that spatial memory based on head direction develops very early but that allocentric spatial memory takes longer to mature. We go on to report new data demonstrating that memory for associations between objects and their spatial locations is slower to develop than memory for objects alone. This is again consistent with previous reports suggesting that adult like spatial representations have a protracted development in rats and also suggests that the systems involved in processing non-spatial stimuli come online earlier.
Mattfeld, Aaron T.; Whitfield-Gabrieli, Susan; Biederman, Joseph; Spencer, Thomas; Brown, Ariel; Fried, Ronna; Gabrieli, John D.E.
Prevailing neuropsychological models of attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) propose that ADHD arises from deficits in executive functions such as working memory, but accumulating clinical evidence suggests a dissociation between ADHD and executive dysfunctions. This study examined whether ADHD and working memory capacity are behaviorally and neurobiologically separable using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI). Participants diagnosed with ADHD in childhood who subsequently remitted or persisted in their diagnosis as adults were characterized at follow-up in adulthood as either impaired or unimpaired in spatial working memory relative to controls who never had ADHD. ADHD participants with impaired spatial working memory performed worse than controls and ADHD participants with unimpaired working memory during an n-back working memory task while being scanned. Both controls and ADHD participants with unimpaired working memory exhibited significant linearly increasing activation in the inferior frontal junction, precuneus, lingual gyrus, and cerebellum as a function of working-memory load, and these activations did not differ significantly between these groups. ADHD participants with impaired working memory exhibited significant hypoactivation in the same regions, which was significantly different than both control participants and ADHD participants with unimpaired working memory. These findings support both a behavioral and neurobiological dissociation between ADHD and working memory capacity. PMID:26900567
Aaron T. Mattfeld
Full Text Available Prevailing neuropsychological models of attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD propose that ADHD arises from deficits in executive functions such as working memory, but accumulating clinical evidence suggests a dissociation between ADHD and executive dysfunctions. This study examined whether ADHD and working memory capacity are behaviorally and neurobiologically separable using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI. Participants diagnosed with ADHD in childhood who subsequently remitted or persisted in their diagnosis as adults were characterized at follow-up in adulthood as either impaired or unimpaired in spatial working memory relative to controls who never had ADHD. ADHD participants with impaired spatial working memory performed worse than controls and ADHD participants with unimpaired working memory during an n-back working memory task while being scanned. Both controls and ADHD participants with unimpaired working memory exhibited significant linearly increasing activation in the inferior frontal junction, precuneus, lingual gyrus, and cerebellum as a function of working-memory load, and these activations did not differ significantly between these groups. ADHD participants with impaired working memory exhibited significant hypoactivation in the same regions, which was significantly different than both control participants and ADHD participants with unimpaired working memory. These findings support both a behavioral and neurobiological dissociation between ADHD and working memory capacity.
Mattfeld, Aaron T; Whitfield-Gabrieli, Susan; Biederman, Joseph; Spencer, Thomas; Brown, Ariel; Fried, Ronna; Gabrieli, John D E
Prevailing neuropsychological models of attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) propose that ADHD arises from deficits in executive functions such as working memory, but accumulating clinical evidence suggests a dissociation between ADHD and executive dysfunctions. This study examined whether ADHD and working memory capacity are behaviorally and neurobiologically separable using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI). Participants diagnosed with ADHD in childhood who subsequently remitted or persisted in their diagnosis as adults were characterized at follow-up in adulthood as either impaired or unimpaired in spatial working memory relative to controls who never had ADHD. ADHD participants with impaired spatial working memory performed worse than controls and ADHD participants with unimpaired working memory during an n-back working memory task while being scanned. Both controls and ADHD participants with unimpaired working memory exhibited significant linearly increasing activation in the inferior frontal junction, precuneus, lingual gyrus, and cerebellum as a function of working-memory load, and these activations did not differ significantly between these groups. ADHD participants with impaired working memory exhibited significant hypoactivation in the same regions, which was significantly different than both control participants and ADHD participants with unimpaired working memory. These findings support both a behavioral and neurobiological dissociation between ADHD and working memory capacity.
Piber, Dominique; Nowacki, Jan; Mueller, Sven C; Wingenfeld, Katja; Otte, Christian
Sex differences have been found in spatial learning and spatial memory, with several studies indicating that males outperform females. We tested in the virtual Morris Water Maze (vMWM) task, whether sex differences in spatial cognitive processes are attributable to differences in spatial learning or spatial memory retrieval in a large student sample. We tested 90 healthy students (45 women and 45 men) with a mean age of 23.5 years (SD=3.5). Spatial learning and spatial memory retrieval were measured by using the vMWM task, during which participants had to search a virtual pool for a hidden platform, facilitated by visual cues surrounding the pool. Several learning trials assessed spatial learning, while a separate probe trial assessed spatial memory retrieval. We found a significant sex effect during spatial learning, with males showing shorter latency and shorter path length, as compared to females (all pretrieval (p=0.615). Furthermore, post-hoc analyses revealed significant sex differences in spatial search strategies (pretrieval. Our study raises the question, whether men and women use different learning strategies, which nevertheless result in equal performances of spatial memory retrieval. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Markel, Paul D
Ongoing development of haptic technology has the potential to provide significant improvement in safety and performance in demanding environments where vision and hearing are compromised. Research regarding the cognitive psychology of touch is lacking and could be beneficial in the development of expectations about human performance for the refinement and implementation of haptic technology. This study examines haptic-spatial memory using a novel assessment method based on finger anatomy. In addition, evidence is presented for a serial-position effect for haptic-spatial memory that is analogous to the classic serial-position effect demonstrated in the verbal recall of word lists. Finally, haptic-spatial memory is compared with short- and long-term memory for visual-spatial tasks.
Ciaramelli, Elisa; Lin, Olivia; Moscovitch, Morris
The study explores the bottom-up attentional consequences of episodic memory retrieval. Individuals studied words (Experiment 1) or pictures (Experiment 2) presented on the left or on the right of the screen. They then viewed studied and new stimuli in the centre of the screen. One-second after the appearance of each stimulus, participants had to respond to a dot presented on the left or on the right of the screen. The dot could follow a stimulus that had been presented, during the study phase, on the same side as the dot (congruent condition), a stimulus that had been presented on the opposite side (incongruent condition), or a new stimulus (neutral condition). Subjects were faster to respond to the dot in the congruent compared to the incongruent condition, with an overall right visual field advantage in Experiment 1. The memory-driven facilitation effect correlated with subjects' re-experiencing of the encoding context (R responses; Experiment 1), but not with their explicit memory for the side of items' presentation (source memory; Experiment 2). The results indicate that memory contents are attended automatically and can bias the deployment of attention. The degree to which memory and attention interact appears related to subjective but not objective indicators of memory strength.
Full Text Available Individuals with schizophrenia (SZ consistently show deficits in spatial working memory (WM and associated atypical patterns of neural activity within key WM regions, including the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (dlPFC and parietal cortices. However, little research has focused on adolescent psychosis (AP and potential age-associated disruptions of WM circuitry that may occur in youth with this severe form of illness. Here we utilized each subject’s individual spatial WM capacity to investigate task-based neural dysfunction in 17 patients with AP (16.58 ± 2.60 years old as compared to 17 typically developing, demographically comparable adolescents (18.07 ± 3.26 years old. AP patients showed lower behavioral performance at higher WM loads and lower overall WM capacity compared to healthy controls. Whole-brain activation analyses revealed greater bilateral precentral and right postcentral activity in controls relative to AP patients, when controlling for individual WM capacity. Seed-based psychophysiological interaction (PPI analyses revealed significantly greater co-activation between the left dlPFC and left frontal pole in controls relative to AP patients. Significant group-by-age interactions were observed in both whole-brain and PPI analyses, with AP patients showing atypically greater neural activity and stronger coupling between WM task activated brain regions as a function of increasing age. Additionally, AP patients demonstrated positive relationships between right dlPFC neural activity and task performance, but unlike healthy controls, failed to show associations between neural activity and out-of-scanner neurocognitive performance. Collectively, these findings are consistent with atypical WM-related functioning and disrupted developmental processes in youth with AP.
Mou, Weimin; Liu, Xianyun; McNamara, Timothy P.
Two experiments investigated whether the spatial reference directions that are used to specify objects' locations in memory can be solely determined by layout geometry. Participants studied a layout of objects from a single viewpoint while their eye movements were recorded. Subsequently, participants used memory to make judgments of relative…
Zimmermann, Jacqueline F.; Moscovitch, Morris; Alain, Claude
Long-term memory (LTM) has been shown to bias attention to a previously learned visual target location. Here, we examined whether memory-predicted spatial location can facilitate the detection of a faint pure tone target embedded in real world audio clips (e.g., soundtrack of a restaurant). During an initial familiarization task, participants…
Vargas-López, Viviana; Lamprea, Marisol R; Múnera, Alejandro
Acute stress induced before spatial training impairs memory consolidation. Although non-epigenetic underpinning of such effect has been described, the epigenetic mechanisms involved have not yet been studied. Since spatial training and intense stress have opposite effects on histone acetylation balance, it is conceivable that disruption of such balance may underlie acute stress-induced spatial memory consolidation impairment and that inhibiting histone deacetylases prevents such effect. Trichostatin-A (TSA, a histone deacetylase inhibitor) was used to test its effectiveness in preventing stress' deleterious effect on memory. Male Wistar rats were trained in a spatial task in the Barnes maze; 1-h movement restraint was applied to half of them before training. Immediately after training, stressed and non-stressed animals were randomly assigned to receive either TSA (1mg/kg) or vehicle intraperitoneal injection. Twenty-four hours after training, long-term spatial memory was tested; plasma and brain tissue were collected immediately after the memory test to evaluate corticosterone levels and histone H3 acetylation in several brain areas. Stressed animals receiving vehicle displayed memory impairment, increased plasma corticosterone levels and markedly reduced histone H3 acetylation in prelimbic cortex and hippocampus. Such effects did not occur in stressed animals treated with TSA. The aforementioned results support the hypothesis that acute stress induced-memory impairment is related to histone deacetylation. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Martin, Randi C; Yan, Hao; Schnur, Tatiana T
Speakers retrieve conceptual, syntactic and lexical information in advance of articulation during sentence production. What type of working memory (WM) store is used to hold the planned information before speaking? To address this question, we measured onset latencies when subjects produced sentences that began with either a complex or a simple initial noun phrase, while holding semantic, phonological or spatial information in WM. Although we found that subjects had longer onset latencies for sentences beginning with a complex noun phrase, showing a phrasal scope of planning, the magnitude of this complexity effect was not affected by any type of WM load. However, subjects made more syntactic errors (but not lexical errors) for sentences beginning with a complex noun phrase, suggesting that advance planning for these phrases occurs at a syntactic rather than lexical-semantic level, which may account for the lack of effect with various types of WM load in the current study. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Manza, Peter; Hau, Chui Luen Vera; Leung, Hoi-Chung
Human working memory (WM) is inherently limited, so we must filter out irrelevant information in our environment or our mind while retaining limited important relevant contents. Previous work suggests that neural oscillations in the alpha band (8-14 Hz) play an important role in inhibiting incoming distracting information during attention and selective encoding tasks. However, whether alpha power is involved in inhibiting no-longer-relevant content or in representing relevant WM content is still debated. To clarify this issue, we manipulated the amount of relevant/irrelevant information using a task requiring spatial WM updating while measuring neural oscillatory activity via EEG and localized current sources across the scalp using a surface Laplacian transform. An initial memory set of two, four, or six spatial locations was to be memorized over a delay until an updating cue was presented indicating that only one or three locations remained relevant for a subsequent recognition test. Alpha amplitude varied with memory maintenance and updating demands among a cluster of left frontocentral electrodes. Greater postcue alpha power was associated with the high relevant load conditions (six and four dots cued to reduce to three relevant) relative to the lower load conditions (four and two dots reduced to one). Across subjects, this difference in alpha power was correlated with condition differences in performance accuracy. In contrast, no significant effects of irrelevant load were observed. These findings demonstrate that, during WM updating, alpha power reflects maintenance of relevant memory contents rather than suppression of no-longer-relevant memory traces.
D'Esposito, Mark; Postle, Bradley R
For more than 50 years, psychologists and neuroscientists have recognized the importance of a working memory to coordinate processing when multiple goals are active and to guide behavior with information that is not present in the immediate environment. In recent years, psychological theory and cognitive neuroscience data have converged on the idea that information is encoded into working memory by allocating attention to internal representations, whether semantic long-term memory (e.g., letters, digits, words), sensory, or motoric. Thus, information-based multivariate analyses of human functional MRI data typically find evidence for the temporary representation of stimuli in regions that also process this information in nonworking memory contexts. The prefrontal cortex (PFC), on the other hand, exerts control over behavior by biasing the salience of mnemonic representations and adjudicating among competing, context-dependent rules. The "control of the controller" emerges from a complex interplay between PFC and striatal circuits and ascending dopaminergic neuromodulatory signals.
Cocchi, Luca; Toepel, Ulrike; De Lucia, Marzia; Martuzzi, Roberto; Wood, Stephen J; Carter, Olivia; Murray, Micah M
Increasing evidence suggests that working memory and perceptual processes are dynamically interrelated due to modulating activity in overlapping brain networks. However, the direct influence of working memory on the spatio-temporal brain dynamics of behaviorally relevant intervening information remains unclear. To investigate this issue, subjects performed a visual proximity grid perception task under three different visual-spatial working memory (VSWM) load conditions. VSWM load was manipulated by asking subjects to memorize the spatial locations of 6 or 3 disks. The grid was always presented between the encoding and recognition of the disk pattern. As a baseline condition, grid stimuli were presented without a VSWM context. VSWM load altered both perceptual performance and neural networks active during intervening grid encoding. Participants performed faster and more accurately on a challenging perceptual task under high VSWM load as compared to the low load and the baseline condition. Visual evoked potential (VEP) analyses identified changes in the configuration of the underlying sources in one particular period occurring 160-190 ms post-stimulus onset. Source analyses further showed an occipito-parietal down-regulation concurrent to the increased involvement of temporal and frontal resources in the high VSWM context. Together, these data suggest that cognitive control mechanisms supporting working memory may selectively enhance concurrent visual processing related to an independent goal. More broadly, our findings are in line with theoretical models implicating the engagement of frontal regions in synchronizing and optimizing mnemonic and perceptual resources towards multiple goals. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Unsworth, Nash; Engle, Randall W.
Studies examining individual differences in working memory capacity have suggested that individuals with low working memory capacities demonstrate impaired performance on a variety of attention and memory tasks compared with individuals with high working memory capacities. This working memory limitation can be conceived of as arising from 2…
Wolfe, Jeremy M
Objects are not represented individually in visual working memory (VWM), but in relation to the contextual information provided by other memorized objects. We studied whether the contextual information provided by the spatial configuration of all memorized objects is viewpoint-dependent. We ran two experiments asking participants to detect changes in locations between memory and probe for one object highlighted in the probe image. We manipulated the changes in viewpoint between memory and probe (Exp. 1: 0°, 30°, 60°; Exp. 2: 0°, 60°), as well as the spatial configuration visible in the probe image (Exp. 1: full configuration, partial configuration; Exp. 2: full configuration, no configuration). Location change detection was higher with the full spatial configuration than with the partial configuration or with no spatial configuration at viewpoint changes of 0°, thus replicating previous findings on the nonindependent representations of individual objects in VWM. Most importantly, the effect of spatial configurations decreased with increasing viewpoint changes, suggesting a viewpoint-dependent representation of contextual information in VWM. We discuss these findings within the context of this special issue, in particular whether research performed within the slots-versus-resources debate and research on the effects of contextual information might focus on two different storage systems within VWM. PMID:25341647
Oberauer, Klaus; Vockenberg, Kerstin
Three experiments investigated proactive interference and proactive facilitation in a memory-updating paradigm. Participants remembered several letters or spatial patterns, distinguished by their spatial positions, and updated them by new stimuli up to 20 times per trial. Self-paced updating times were shorter when an item previously remembered and then replaced reappeared in the same location than when it reappeared in a different location. This effect demonstrates residual memory for no-longer-relevant bindings of items to locations. The effect increased with the number of items to be remembered. With one exception, updating times did not increase, and recall of final values did not decrease, over successive updating steps, thus providing little evidence for proactive interference building up cumulatively.
Amir, Nader; Bomyea, Jessica
Research suggests that understanding complex social cues depends on the availability of cognitive resources (e.g., Phillips, Channon, Tunstall, Hedenstrom, & Lyons, 2008). In spite of evidence suggesting that executive control functioning may impact anxiety (e.g., Eysenck, Derakshan, Santos, & Calvo, 2007), relatively few studies have examined working memory in individuals with generalized social phobia. Moreover, few studies have examined the role of threat-relevant content in working memory performance in clinically anxious populations. To this end, the present study assessed working memory capacity (WMC) in individuals with generalized social phobia and nonanxious controls using an operation span task with threat-relevant and neutral stimuli. Results revealed that nonanxious individuals demonstrated better WMC than individuals with generalized social phobia for neutral words but not for social threat words. Individuals with generalized social phobia demonstrated better WMC performance for threat words relative to neutral words. These results suggest that individuals with generalized social phobia may have relatively enhanced working memory performance for salient, socially relevant information. This enhanced working memory capacity for threat-relevant information may be the result of practice with this information in generalized social phobia.
Ricker, Timothy J.; Cowan, Nelson
Understanding forgetting from working memory, the memory used in ongoing cognitive processing, is critical to understanding human cognition. In the past decade, a number of conflicting findings have been reported regarding the role of time in forgetting from working memory. This has led to a debate concerning whether longer retention intervals necessarily result in more forgetting. An obstacle to directly comparing conflicting reports is a divergence in methodology across studies. Studies tha...
Dunning, Darren L; Holmes, Joni; Gathercole, Susan E
Children with low working memory typically make poor educational progress, and it has been speculated that difficulties in meeting the heavy working memory demands of the classroom may be a contributory factor. Intensive working memory training has been shown to boost performance on untrained memory tasks in a variety of populations. This first randomized controlled trial with low working memory children investigated whether the benefits of training extend beyond standard working memory tasks...
Oberauer, Klaus; Lin, Hsuan-Yu
The article introduces an interference model of working memory for information in a continuous similarity space, such as the features of visual objects. The model incorporates the following assumptions: (a) Probability of retrieval is determined by the relative activation of each retrieval candidate at the time of retrieval; (b) activation comes from 3 sources in memory: cue-based retrieval using context cues, context-independent memory for relevant contents, and noise; (c) 1 memory object and its context can be held in the focus of attention, where it is represented with higher precision, and partly shielded against interference. The model was fit to data from 4 continuous-reproduction experiments testing working memory for colors or orientations. The experiments involved variations of set size, kind of context cues, precueing, and retro-cueing of the to-be-tested item. The interference model fit the data better than 2 competing models, the Slot-Averaging model and the Variable-Precision resource model. The interference model also fared well in comparison to several new models incorporating alternative theoretical assumptions. The experiments confirm 3 novel predictions of the interference model: (a) Nontargets intrude in recall to the extent that they are close to the target in context space; (b) similarity between target and nontarget features improves recall, and (c) precueing-but not retro-cueing-the target substantially reduces the set-size effect. The success of the interference model shows that working memory for continuous visual information works according to the same principles as working memory for more discrete (e.g., verbal) contents. Data and model codes are available at https://osf.io/wgqd5/. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2016 APA, all rights reserved).
Schulze, Katrin; Vargha-Khadem, Faraneh; Mishkin, Mortimer
The discovery and description of the affected members of the KE family (aKE) initiated research on how genes enable the unique human trait of speech and language. Many aspects of this genetic influence on speech-related cognitive mechanisms are still elusive, e.g. if and how cognitive processes not directly involved in speech production are affected. In the current study we investigated the effect of the FOXP2 mutation on Working Memory (WM). Half the members of the multigenerational KE family have an inherited speech-language disorder, characterised as a verbal and orofacial dyspraxia caused by a mutation of the FOXP2 gene. The core phenotype of the affected KE members (aKE) is a deficiency in repeating words, especially complex non-words, and in coordinating oromotor sequences generally. Execution of oromotor sequences and repetition of phonological sequences both require WM, but to date the aKE's memory ability in this domain has not been examined in detail. To do so we used a test series based on the Baddeley and Hitch WM model, which posits that the central executive (CE), important for planning and manipulating information, works in conjunction with two modality-specific components: The phonological loop (PL), specialized for processing speech-based information; and the visuospatial sketchpad (VSSP), dedicated to processing visual and spatial information. We compared WM performance related to CE, PL, and VSSP function in five aKE and 15 healthy controls (including three unaffected members of the KE family who do not have the FOXP2 mutation). The aKE scored significantly below this control group on the PL component, but not on the VSSP or CE components. Further, the aKE were impaired relative to the controls not only in motor (i.e. articulatory) output but also on the recognition-based PL subtest (word-list matching), which does not require speech production. These results suggest that the aKE's impaired phonological WM may be due to a defect in subvocal
Chun, Marvin M
Visual working memory and visual attention are intimately related, such that working memory encoding and maintenance reflects actively sustained attention to a limited number of visual objects and events important for ongoing cognition and action. Although attention is typically considered to operate over perceptual input, a recent taxonomy proposes to additionally consider how attention can be directed to internal perceptual representations in the absence of sensory input, as well as other internal memories, choices, and thoughts (Chun, Golomb, & Turk-Browne, 2011). Such internal attention enables prolonged binding of features into integrated objects, along with enhancement of relevant sensory mechanisms. These processes are all limited in capacity, although different types of working memory and attention, such as spatial vs. object processing, operate independently with separate capacity. Overall, the success of maintenance depends on the ability to inhibit both external (perceptual) and internal (cognitive) distraction. Working memory is the interface by which attentional mechanisms select and actively maintain relevant perceptual information from the external world as internal representations within the mind. Copyright © 2011. Published by Elsevier Ltd.
Luo, Yan; Wang, Jing; Wu, Hanrong; Zhu, Dongmei; Zhang, Yu
Although plasticity in the neural system underlies working memory, and working memory can be improved by training, there is thus far no evidence that children with developmental dyslexia can benefit from working-memory training. In the present study, thirty dyslexic children aged 8–11 years were recruited from an elementary school in Wuhan, China. They received working-memory training, including training in visuospatial memory, verbal memory, and central executive tasks. The difficulty of the...
Patai, Eva Zita; Buckley, Alice; Nobre, Anna Christina
A popular model of visual perception states that coarse information (carried by low spatial frequencies) along the dorsal stream is rapidly transmitted to prefrontal and medial temporal areas, activating contextual information from memory, which can in turn constrain detailed input carried by high spatial frequencies arriving at a slower rate along the ventral visual stream, thus facilitating the processing of ambiguous visual stimuli. We were interested in testing whether this model contributes to memory-guided orienting of attention. In particular, we asked whether global, low-spatial frequency (LSF) inputs play a dominant role in triggering contextual memories in order to facilitate the processing of the upcoming target stimulus. We explored this question over four experiments. The first experiment replicated the LSF advantage reported in perceptual discrimination tasks by showing that participants were faster and more accurate at matching a low spatial frequency version of a scene, compared to a high spatial frequency version, to its original counterpart in a forced-choice task. The subsequent three experiments tested the relative contributions of low versus high spatial frequencies during memory-guided covert spatial attention orienting tasks. Replicating the effects of memory-guided attention, pre-exposure to scenes associated with specific spatial memories for target locations (memory cues) led to higher perceptual discrimination and faster response times to identify targets embedded in the scenes. However, either high or low spatial frequency cues were equally effective; LSF signals did not selectively or preferentially contribute to the memory-driven attention benefits to performance. Our results challenge a generalized model that LSFs activate contextual memories, which in turn bias attention and facilitate perception.
Injoque-Ricle, Irene; Calero, Alejandra D.; Alloway, Tracy P.; Burin, Debora I.
The Automated Working Memory Assessment battery was designed to assess verbal and visuospatial passive and active working memory processing in children and adolescents. The aim of this paper is to present the adaptation and validation of the AWMA battery to Argentinean Spanish-speaking children aged 6 to 11 years. Verbal subtests were adapted and…
Ricker, Timothy; Nieuwenstein, Mark; Bayliss, Donna; Barrouillet, Pierre
Working memory, the system that maintains a limited set of representations for immediate use in cognition, is a central part of human cognition. Three processes have recently been proposed to govern information storage in working memory: Consolidation, refreshing and removal. Here we discuss in
Mayra Monteiro Pires
Full Text Available The working memory is a system with limited capacity which allows the temporary storage and manipulation of information to cognitive complex abilities like language, learning and reasoning. This study has as the objective present the construction, the adaptation and the evaluation of four psycholinguistics working memory tests in Brazilian Portuguese that were based in the English battery of tests Memory Test Battery For Children. The tests adapted were applied in a pilot investigation in a group of 15 children with learning school difficulties and compared to a group of 15 children with normal development. The adaptation of the tests was developed in the E-Prime v2.0 Professional® software. The four psycholinguistic tests access the simultaneous storage and processing capacities of information in general domain, as also specific for language information. The results suggest that the four tests are sensible instruments to detect possible difficulties in the working memory processing in children, because they could identify the different performances between the two groups in a statistical analysis. The tests developed perfectly attended their aims for evaluation and can contribute in a near future for other studies with a greater number of subjects, providing a more concrete and evidences of working memory development in children.
Nur, I. R. D.; Herman, T.; Ningsih, S.
Learning process is the activities that has important role because this process is one of the all factors that establish students success in learning. oftentimes we find so many students get the difficulties when they study mathematics. This condition is not only because of the outside factor but also it comes from the inside. The purpose of this research is to analyze and give the representation how students working memory happened in physical education students for basic statistics subjects which have mathematical difficulties. The subjects are 4 students which have a mathematical difficulties. The research method is case study and when the describe about students working memory are explanated deeply with naturalistic observation. Based on this research, it was founded that 4 students have a working memory deficit in three components. The components are phonological loop, visuospatial sketchpad, dan episodic buffer.
Oberauer, Klaus; Bialkova, Svetlana
Processing information in working memory requires selective access to a subset of working-memory contents by a focus of attention. Complex cognition often requires joint access to 2 items in working memory. How does the focus select 2 items? Two experiments with an arithmetic task and 1 with a spatial task investigate time demands for successive…
Through working with a woman abused as a child, a teacher concluded that the violence of sexual, physical, and psychological abuse is common among many adults who read and write poorly. Their experiences should be acknowledged in literacy programs that encourage people to develop skills with which to tell their stories. (SK)
Christophel, Thomas B; Haynes, John-Dylan
There has been a long history of research on visual working memory. Whereas early studies have focused on the role of lateral prefrontal cortex in the storage of sensory information, this has been challenged by research in humans that has directly assessed the encoding of perceptual contents, pointing towards a role of visual and parietal regions during storage. In a previous study we used pattern classification to investigate the storage of complex visual color patterns across delay periods. This revealed coding of such contents in early visual and parietal brain regions. Here we aim to investigate whether the involvement of visual and parietal cortex is also observable for other types of complex, visuo-spatial pattern stimuli. Specifically, we used a combination of fMRI and multivariate classification to investigate the retention of complex flow-field stimuli defined by the spatial patterning of motion trajectories of random dots. Subjects were trained to memorize the precise spatial layout of these stimuli and to retain this information during an extended delay. We used a multivariate decoding approach to identify brain regions where spatial patterns of activity encoded the memorized stimuli. Content-specific memory signals were observable in motion sensitive visual area MT+ and in posterior parietal cortex that might encode spatial information in a modality independent manner. Interestingly, we also found information about the memorized visual stimulus in somatosensory cortex, suggesting a potential crossmodal contribution to memory. Our findings thus indicate that working memory storage of visual percepts might be distributed across unimodal, multimodal and even crossmodal brain regions. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Although prefrontal and hippocampal neurons are critical for spatial working memory,the function of glial cells in spatial working memory remains uncertain.In this study we investigated the function of glial cells in rats’ working memory.The glial cells of rat brain were inhibited by intracerebroventricular(icv) injection of fluorocitrate(FC).The effects of FC on the glial cells were examined by using electroencephalogram(EEG) recordings and delayed spatial alternation tasks.After icv injection of 10 μL of 0.5 nmol/L or 5 nmol/L FC,the EEG power spectrum recorded from the hippocampus increased,but the power spectrum for the prefrontal cortex did not change,and working memory was unaffected.Following an icv injection of 10 μL of 20 nmol/L FC,the EEG power spectra in both the prefrontal cortex and the hippocampus increased,and working memory improved.The icv injection of 10 μL of 50 nmol/L FC,the EEG power spectra in both the prefrontal cortex and in the hippocampus decreased,and working memory was impaired.These results suggest that spatial working memory is affected by centrally administered FC,but only if there are changes in the EEG power spectrum in the prefrontal cortex.Presumably,the prefrontal glial cells relate to the working memory.
Hansen, Mads; Wallentin, Mikkel; Vuust, Peter
Musical ability has been found to be associated with an enhancement of verbal working memory. In this study, we investigated whether this effect would generalize to visual-spatial working memory as would be expected if the effect were driven by general intelligence. We administered the WAIS...
Szucs, Denes; Devine, Amy; Soltesz, Fruzsina; Nobes, Alison; Gabriel, Florence
Developmental dyscalculia is thought to be a specific impairment of mathematics ability. Currently dominant cognitive neuroscience theories of developmental dyscalculia suggest that it originates from the impairment of the magnitude representation of the human brain, residing in the intraparietal sulcus, or from impaired connections between number symbols and the magnitude representation. However, behavioral research offers several alternative theories for developmental dyscalculia and neuro-imaging also suggests that impairments in developmental dyscalculia may be linked to disruptions of other functions of the intraparietal sulcus than the magnitude representation. Strikingly, the magnitude representation theory has never been explicitly contrasted with a range of alternatives in a systematic fashion. Here we have filled this gap by directly contrasting five alternative theories (magnitude representation, working memory, inhibition, attention and spatial processing) of developmental dyscalculia in 9-10-year-old primary school children. Participants were selected from a pool of 1004 children and took part in 16 tests and nine experiments. The dominant features of developmental dyscalculia are visuo-spatial working memory, visuo-spatial short-term memory and inhibitory function (interference suppression) impairment. We hypothesize that inhibition impairment is related to the disruption of central executive memory function. Potential problems of visuo-spatial processing and attentional function in developmental dyscalculia probably depend on short-term memory/working memory and inhibition impairments. The magnitude representation theory of developmental dyscalculia was not supported. Copyright © 2013 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd.. All rights reserved.
Szucs, Denes; Devine, Amy; Soltesz, Fruzsina; Nobes, Alison; Gabriel, Florence
Developmental dyscalculia is thought to be a specific impairment of mathematics ability. Currently dominant cognitive neuroscience theories of developmental dyscalculia suggest that it originates from the impairment of the magnitude representation of the human brain, residing in the intraparietal sulcus, or from impaired connections between number symbols and the magnitude representation. However, behavioral research offers several alternative theories for developmental dyscalculia and neuro-imaging also suggests that impairments in developmental dyscalculia may be linked to disruptions of other functions of the intraparietal sulcus than the magnitude representation. Strikingly, the magnitude representation theory has never been explicitly contrasted with a range of alternatives in a systematic fashion. Here we have filled this gap by directly contrasting five alternative theories (magnitude representation, working memory, inhibition, attention and spatial processing) of developmental dyscalculia in 9–10-year-old primary school children. Participants were selected from a pool of 1004 children and took part in 16 tests and nine experiments. The dominant features of developmental dyscalculia are visuo-spatial working memory, visuo-spatial short-term memory and inhibitory function (interference suppression) impairment. We hypothesize that inhibition impairment is related to the disruption of central executive memory function. Potential problems of visuo-spatial processing and attentional function in developmental dyscalculia probably depend on short-term memory/working memory and inhibition impairments. The magnitude representation theory of developmental dyscalculia was not supported. PMID:23890692
Bostelmann, Mathilde; Fragnière, Emilie; Costanzo, Floriana; Di Vara, Silvia; Menghini, Deny; Vicari, Stefano; Lavenex, Pierre; Lavenex, Pamela Banta
Williams syndrome (WS), a genetic deletion syndrome, is characterized by severe visuospatial deficits affecting performance on both tabletop spatial tasks and on tasks which assess orientation and navigation. Nevertheless, previous studies of WS spatial capacities have ignored the fact that two different spatial memory systems are believed to contribute parallel spatial representations supporting navigation. The place learning system depends on the hippocampal formation and creates flexible relational representations of the environment, also known as cognitive maps. The spatial response learning system depends on the striatum and creates fixed stimulus-response representations, also known as habits. Indeed, no study assessing WS spatial competence has used tasks which selectively target these two spatial memory systems. Here, we report that individuals with WS exhibit a dissociation in their spatial abilities subserved by these two memory systems. As compared to typically developing (TD) children in the same mental age range, place learning performance was impaired in individuals with WS. In contrast, their spatial response learning performance was facilitated. Our findings in individuals with WS and TD children suggest that place learning and response learning interact competitively to control the behavioral strategies normally used to support human spatial navigation. Our findings further suggest that the neural pathways supporting place learning may be affected by the genetic deletion that characterizes WS, whereas those supporting response learning may be relatively preserved. The dissociation observed between these two spatial memory systems provides a coherent theoretical framework to characterize the spatial abilities of individuals with WS, and may lead to the development of new learning strategies based on their facilitated response learning abilities. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
Full Text Available The haptic perception of 2D images is believed to make heavy demands on working memory. During active exploration, we need to store not only the current sensory information, but also to integrate this with kinesthetic information of the hand and fingers in order to generate a coherent percept. The question that arises is how much tactile memory we have for tactile stimuli that are no longer in contact with the skin during active touch? We examined working memory using a tactile change detection task with active exploration. Each trial contained two stimulation arrays. Participants engaged in unconstrained active tactile exploration of an array of vibrotactile stimulators. In half of the trials, one of the vibrating tactors that was active in the first stimulation turned off and another started vibrating in the second stimulation. Participants had to report whether the arrays were the same or different. Performance was near-perfect when up to two tactors were used and dropped linearly as the number of the vibrating tactors increased. These results suggest that the tactile working memory off the hand is limited and there is little or no memory integration across hand movements.
Bae, Gi-Yeul; Luck, Steven J
We investigated whether the representations of different objects are maintained independently in working memory or interact with each other. Observers were shown two sequentially presented orientations and required to reproduce each orientation after a delay. The sequential presentation minimized perceptual interactions so that we could isolate interactions between memory representations per se. We found that similar orientations were repelled from each other whereas dissimilar orientations were attracted to each other. In addition, when one of the items was given greater attentional priority by means of a cue, the representation of the high-priority item was not influenced very much by the orientation of the low-priority item, but the representation of the low-priority item was strongly influenced by the orientation of the high-priority item. This indicates that attention modulates the interactions between working memory representations. In addition, errors in the reported orientations of the two objects were positively correlated under some conditions, suggesting that representations of distinct objects may become grouped together in memory. Together, these results demonstrate that working-memory representations are not independent but instead interact with each other in a manner that depends on attentional priority.
Hutchings, Elizabeth J.; Waller, Jennifer L.
A common feature of the neuropsychiatric disorders for which antipsychotic drugs are prescribed is cognitive dysfunction, yet the effects of long-term antipsychotic treatment on cognition are largely unknown. In the current study, we evaluated the effects of long-term oral treatment with the first-generation antipsychotic haloperidol (1.0 and 2.0 mg/kg daily) and the second-generation antipsychotic risperidone (1.25 and 2.5 mg/kg daily) on the acquisition and performance of two radial-arm maze (RAM) tasks and a five-choice serial reaction-time task (5C-SRTT) in rats during days 15–60 and 84–320 days of treatment, respectively. In the RAM, neither antipsychotic significantly affected the acquisition or performance of a spatial win shift or a delayed non–match-to-position task. Conversely, in the rats administered 5C-SRTT, haloperidol was associated with profound deficits in performance, and the subjects were not able to progress through all stages of task acquisition. Depending on the dose, risperidone was associated with a greater number of trials to meet specific performance criteria during task acquisition compared with vehicle-treated controls; however, most subjects were eventually able to achieve all levels of task acquisition. Both haloperidol and risperidone also increased the number of perseverative and time-out responses during certain stages of task acquisition, and the response and reward latencies were slightly higher than controls during several stages of the study. These results in rats suggest that while long-term treatment with haloperidol or risperidone may not significantly affect spatial working or short-term memory, both antipsychotics can (depending on dose) impair sustained attention, decrease psychomotor speed, increase compulsive-type behaviors, and impair cognitive flexibility. PMID:24042161
Hutchings, Elizabeth J; Waller, Jennifer L; Terry, Alvin V
A common feature of the neuropsychiatric disorders for which antipsychotic drugs are prescribed is cognitive dysfunction, yet the effects of long-term antipsychotic treatment on cognition are largely unknown. In the current study, we evaluated the effects of long-term oral treatment with the first-generation antipsychotic haloperidol (1.0 and 2.0 mg/kg daily) and the second-generation antipsychotic risperidone (1.25 and 2.5 mg/kg daily) on the acquisition and performance of two radial-arm maze (RAM) tasks and a five-choice serial reaction-time task (5C-SRTT) in rats during days 15-60 and 84-320 days of treatment, respectively. In the RAM, neither antipsychotic significantly affected the acquisition or performance of a spatial win shift or a delayed non-match-to-position task. Conversely, in the rats administered 5C-SRTT, haloperidol was associated with profound deficits in performance, and the subjects were not able to progress through all stages of task acquisition. Depending on the dose, risperidone was associated with a greater number of trials to meet specific performance criteria during task acquisition compared with vehicle-treated controls; however, most subjects were eventually able to achieve all levels of task acquisition. Both haloperidol and risperidone also increased the number of perseverative and time-out responses during certain stages of task acquisition, and the response and reward latencies were slightly higher than controls during several stages of the study. These results in rats suggest that while long-term treatment with haloperidol or risperidone may not significantly affect spatial working or short-term memory, both antipsychotics can (depending on dose) impair sustained attention, decrease psychomotor speed, increase compulsive-type behaviors, and impair cognitive flexibility.
Gindri, Gigiane; Keske-Soares, Márcia; Mota, Helena Bolli
Working memory, phonological awareness and spelling hypothesis. To verify the relationship between working memory, phonological awareness and spelling hypothesis in pre-school children and first graders. Participants of this study were 90 students, belonging to state schools, who presented typical linguistic development. Forty students were preschoolers, with the average age of six and 50 students were first graders, with the average age of seven. Participants were submitted to an evaluation of the working memory abilities based on the Working Memory Model (Baddeley, 2000), involving phonological loop. Phonological loop was evaluated using the Auditory Sequential Test, subtest 5 of Illinois Test of Psycholinguistic Abilities (ITPA), Brazilian version (Bogossian & Santos, 1977), and the Meaningless Words Memory Test (Kessler, 1997). Phonological awareness abilities were investigated using the Phonological Awareness: Instrument of Sequential Assessment (CONFIAS - Moojen et al., 2003), involving syllabic and phonemic awareness tasks. Writing was characterized according to Ferreiro & Teberosky (1999). Preschoolers presented the ability of repeating sequences of 4.80 digits and 4.30 syllables. Regarding phonological awareness, the performance in the syllabic level was of 19.68 and in the phonemic level was of 8.58. Most of the preschoolers demonstrated to have a pre-syllabic writing hypothesis. First graders repeated, in average, sequences of 5.06 digits and 4.56 syllables. These children presented a phonological awareness of 31.12 in the syllabic level and of 16.18 in the phonemic level, and demonstrated to have an alphabetic writing hypothesis. The performance of working memory, phonological awareness and spelling level are inter-related, as well as being related to chronological age, development and scholarity.
Schneiders, Julia A; Opitz, Bertram; Tang, Huijun; Deng, Yuan; Xie, Chaoxiang; Li, Hong; Mecklinger, Axel
Working memory training has been widely used to investigate working memory processes. We have shown previously that visual working memory benefits only from intra-modal visual but not from across-modal auditory working memory training. In the present functional magnetic resonance imaging study we examined whether auditory working memory processes can also be trained specifically and which training-induced activation changes accompany theses effects. It was investigated whether working memory training with strongly distinct auditory materials transfers exclusively to an auditory (intra-modal) working memory task or whether it generalizes to a (across-modal) visual working memory task. We used adaptive n-back training with tonal sequences and a passive control condition. The memory training led to a reliable training gain. Transfer effects were found for the (intra-modal) auditory but not for the (across-modal) visual transfer task. Training-induced activation decreases in the auditory transfer task were found in two regions in the right inferior frontal gyrus. These effects confirm our previous findings in the visual modality and extents intra-modal effects in the prefrontal cortex to the auditory modality. As the right inferior frontal gyrus is frequently found in maintaining modality-specific auditory information, these results might reflect increased neural efficiency in auditory working memory processes. Furthermore, task-unspecific (amodal) activation decreases in the visual and auditory transfer task were found in the right inferior parietal lobule and the superior portion of the right middle frontal gyrus reflecting less demand on general attentional control processes. These data are in good agreement with amodal activation decreases within the same brain regions on a visual transfer task reported previously.
Schneiders, Julia A.; Opitz, Bertram; Tang, Huijun; Deng, Yuan; Xie, Chaoxiang; Li, Hong; Mecklinger, Axel
Working memory training has been widely used to investigate working memory processes. We have shown previously that visual working memory benefits only from intra-modal visual but not from across-modal auditory working memory training. In the present functional magnetic resonance imaging study we examined whether auditory working memory processes can also be trained specifically and which training-induced activation changes accompany theses effects. It was investigated whether working memory training with strongly distinct auditory materials transfers exclusively to an auditory (intra-modal) working memory task or whether it generalizes to a (across-modal) visual working memory task. We used adaptive n-back training with tonal sequences and a passive control condition. The memory training led to a reliable training gain. Transfer effects were found for the (intra-modal) auditory but not for the (across-modal) visual transfer task. Training-induced activation decreases in the auditory transfer task were found in two regions in the right inferior frontal gyrus. These effects confirm our previous findings in the visual modality and extents intra-modal effects in the prefrontal cortex to the auditory modality. As the right inferior frontal gyrus is frequently found in maintaining modality-specific auditory information, these results might reflect increased neural efficiency in auditory working memory processes. Furthermore, task-unspecific (amodal) activation decreases in the visual and auditory transfer task were found in the right inferior parietal lobule and the superior portion of the right middle frontal gyrus reflecting less demand on general attentional control processes. These data are in good agreement with amodal activation decreases within the same brain regions on a visual transfer task reported previously. PMID:22701418
Full Text Available Working memory training has been widely used to investigate working memory processes. We have shown previously that visual working memory benefits only from intra-modal visual but not from across-modal auditory working memory training. In the present functional magnetic resonance imaging study we examined whether auditory working memory processes can also be trained specifically and which training-induced activation changes accompany theses effects. It was investigated whether working memory training with strongly distinct auditory materials transfers exclusively to an auditory (intra-modal working memory task or whether it generalizes to an (across-modal visual working memory task. We used an adaptive n-back training with tonal sequences and a passive control condition. The memory training led to a reliable training gain. Transfer effects were found for the (intra-modal auditory but not for the (across-modal visual 2-back task. Training-induced activation changes in the auditory 2-back task were found in two regions in the right inferior frontal gyrus. These effects confirm our previous findings in the visual modality and extends intra-modal effects to the auditory modality. These results might reflect increased neural efficiency in auditory working memory processes as in the right inferior frontal gyrus is frequently found in maintaining modality-specific auditory information. By this, these effects are analogical to the activation decreases in the right middle frontal gyrus for the visual modality in our previous study. Furthermore, task-unspecific (across-modal activation decreases in the visual and auditory 2-back task were found in the right inferior parietal lobule and the superior portion of the right middle frontal gyrus reflecting less demands on general attentional control processes. These data are in good agreement with across-modal activation decreases within the same brain regions on a visual 2-back task reported previously.
Velichkovsky, Boris B
Working memory has long been thought to be closely related to consciousness. However, recent empirical studies show that unconscious content may be maintained within working memory and that complex cognitive computations may be performed on-line. This promotes research on the exact relationships between consciousness and working memory. Current evidence for working memory being a conscious as well as an unconscious process is reviewed. Consciousness is shown to be considered a subset of working memory by major current theories of working memory. Evidence for unconscious elements in working memory is shown to come from visual masking and attentional blink paradigms, and from the studies of implicit working memory. It is concluded that more research is needed to explicate the relationship between consciousness and working memory. Future research directions regarding the relationship between consciousness and working memory are discussed. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Park, Jin Young; Min, Byoung-Kyong; Jung, Young-Chul; Pak, Hyensou; Jeong, Yeon-Hong; Kim, Eosu
Illumination conditions appear to influence working efficacy in everyday life. In the present study, we obtained electroencephalogram (EEG) correlates of working-memory load, and investigated how these waveforms are modulated by illumination conditions. We hypothesized that illumination conditions may affect cognitive performance. We designed an EEG study to monitor and record participants' EEG during the Sternberg working memory task under four different illumination conditions. Illumination conditions were generated with a factorial design of two color-temperatures (3000 and 7100 K) by two illuminance levels (150 and 700 lx). During a working memory task, we observed that high illuminance led to significantly lower frontal EEG theta activity than did low illuminance. These differences persisted despite no significant difference in task performance between illumination conditions. We found that the latency of an early event-related potential component, such as N1, was significantly modulated by the illumination condition. The fact that the illumination condition affects brain activity but not behavioral performance suggests that the lighting conditions used in the present study did not influence the performance stage of behavioral processing. Nevertheless, our findings provide objective evidence that illumination conditions modulate brain activity. Further studies are necessary to refine the optimal lighting parameters for facilitating working memory. Copyright © 2013 IBRO. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Piccardi, L; Nori, R; Boccia, M; Barbetti, S; Verde, P; Guariglia, C; Ferlazzo, F
In the present study, we used single- and dual-task conditions to investigate the nature of topographical working memory to better understand what type of task can hamper performance during navigation. During dual-task conditions, we considered four different sources of interference: motor (M), spatial motor (SM), verbal (i.e. articulatory suppression AS) and spatial environmental (SE). In order to assess the nature of topographical working memory, we used the Walking Corsi Test, asking the participants to perform two tasks simultaneously (M, SM, AS and SE). Our results showed that only spatial-environmental interference hampers the execution of a topographical working memory task, suggesting a task-domain-specific effect. We also found general gender differences in the topographical working memory capabilities: men were more proficient than women, regardless of the type of interferences. However, like men, women performed worse when a spatial-environmental interference was present.
Full Text Available Working memory (WM is the part of the brain's memory system that provides temporary storage and manipulation of information necessary for cognition. Although WM has limited capacity at any given time, it has vast memory content in the sense that it acts on the brain's nearly infinite repertoire of lifetime long-term memories. Using simulations, we show that large memory content and WM functionality emerge spontaneously if we take the spike-timing nature of neuronal processing into account. Here, memories are represented by extensively overlapping groups of neurons that exhibit stereotypical time-locked spatiotemporal spike-timing patterns, called polychronous patterns; and synapses forming such polychronous neuronal groups (PNGs are subject to associative synaptic plasticity in the form of both long-term and short-term spike-timing dependent plasticity. While long-term potentiation is essential in PNG formation, we show how short-term plasticity can temporarily strengthen the synapses of selected PNGs and lead to an increase in the spontaneous reactivation rate of these PNGs. This increased reactivation rate, consistent with in vivo recordings during WM tasks, results in high interspike interval variability and irregular, yet systematically changing, elevated firing rate profiles within the neurons of the selected PNGs. Additionally, our theory explains the relationship between such slowly changing firing rates and precisely timed spikes, and it reveals a novel relationship between WM and the perception of time on the order of seconds.
Moscovitch, Morris; Nadel, Lynn; Winocur, Gordon; Gilboa, Asaf; Rosenbaum, R Shayna
The processes and mechanisms implicated in retention and retrieval of memories as they age is an enduring problem in cognitive neuroscience. Research from lesion and functional neuroimaging studies on remote episodic, semantic and spatial memory in humans is crucial for evaluating three theories of hippocampal and/or medial temporal lobe-neocortical interaction in memory retention and retrieval: cognitive map theory, standard consolidation theory and multiple trace theory. Each theory makes different predictions regarding first, the severity and extent of retrograde amnesia following lesions to some or all of the structures mentioned; second, the extent of activation of these structures to retrieval of memory across time; and third, the type of memory being retrieved. Each of these theories has strengths and weaknesses, and there are various unresolved issues. We propose a unified account based on multiple trace theory. This theory states that the hippocampus is needed for re-experiencing detailed episodic and spatial memories no matter how old they are, and that it contributes to the formation and assimilation of semantic memories and schematic spatial maps.
Joseph, Sabine; Iverson, Paul; Manohar, Sanjay; Fox, Zoe; Scott, Sophie K; Husain, Masud
Memory for speech sounds is a key component of models of verbal working memory (WM). But how good is verbal WM? Most investigations assess this using binary report measures to derive a fixed number of items that can be stored. However, recent findings in visual WM have challenged such "quantized" views by employing measures of recall precision with an analogue response scale. WM for speech sounds might rely on both continuous and categorical storage mechanisms. Using a novel speech matching paradigm, we measured WM recall precision for phonemes. Vowel qualities were sampled from a formant space continuum. A probe vowel had to be adjusted to match the vowel quality of a target on a continuous, analogue response scale. Crucially, this provided an index of the variability of a memory representation around its true value and thus allowed us to estimate how memories were distorted from the original sounds. Memory load affected the quality of speech sound recall in two ways. First, there was a gradual decline in recall precision with increasing number of items, consistent with the view that WM representations of speech sounds become noisier with an increase in the number of items held in memory, just as for vision. Based on multidimensional scaling (MDS), the level of noise appeared to be reflected in distortions of the formant space. Second, as memory load increased, there was evidence of greater clustering of participants' responses around particular vowels. A mixture model captured both continuous and categorical responses, demonstrating a shift from continuous to categorical memory with increasing WM load. This suggests that direct acoustic storage can be used for single items, but when more items must be stored, categorical representations must be used.
Gong, Mengyuan; Li, Sheng
Statistical regularities in the natural environment play a central role in adaptive behavior. Among other regularities, reward association is potentially the most prominent factor that influences our daily life. Recent studies have suggested that pre-established reward association yields strong influence on the spatial allocation of attention. Here we show that reward association can also improve visual working memory (VWM) performance when the reward-associated feature is task-irrelevant. We established the reward association during a visual search training session, and investigated the representation of reward-associated features in VWM by the application of a change detection task before and after the training. The results showed that the improvement in VWM was significantly greater for items in the color associated with high reward than for those in low reward-associated or nonrewarded colors. In particular, the results from control experiments demonstrate that the observed reward effect in VWM could not be sufficiently accounted for by attentional capture toward the high reward-associated item. This was further confirmed when the effect of attentional capture was minimized by presenting the items in the sample and test displays of the change detection task with the same color. The results showed significantly larger improvement in VWM performance when the items in a display were in the high reward-associated color than those in the low reward-associated or nonrewarded colors. Our findings suggest that, apart from inducing space-based attentional capture, the learned reward association could also facilitate the perceptual representation of high reward-associated items through feature-based attentional modulation.
Full Text Available Body dissatisfaction (BD is a highly prevalent feature amongst females in society, with the majority of individuals regarding themselves to be overweight compared to their personal ideal, and very few self-describing as underweight. To date, explanations of this dramatic pattern have centred on extrinsic social and media factors, or intrinsic factors connected to individuals’ knowledge and belief structures regarding eating and body shape, with little research examining links between BD and basic cognitive mechanisms. This paper reports a correlational study in which visual and executive cognitive processes that could potentially impact on BD were assessed. Visual memory span and self-rated visual imagery were found to be predictive of BD, alongside a measure of inhibition derived from the Stroop task. In contrast, spatial memory and global precedence were not related to BD. Results are interpreted with reference to the influential multi-component model of working memory.
Oberauer, Klaus; Lewandowsky, Stephan
The article tests the assumption that forgetting in working memory for verbal materials is caused by time-based decay, using the complex-span paradigm. Participants encoded 6 letters for serial recall; each letter was preceded and followed by a processing period comprising 4 trials of difficult visual search. Processing duration, during which memory could decay, was manipulated via search set size. This manipulation increased retention interval by up to 100% without having any effect on recall accuracy. This result held with and without articulatory suppression. Two experiments using a dual-task paradigm showed that the visual search process required central attention. Thus, even when memory maintenance by central attention and by articulatory rehearsal was prevented, a large delay had no effect on memory performance, contrary to the decay notion. Most previous experiments that manipulated the retention interval and the opportunity for maintenance processes in complex span have confounded these variables with time pressure during processing periods. Three further experiments identified time pressure as the variable that affected recall. We conclude that time-based decay does not contribute to the capacity limit of verbal working memory. PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2013 APA, all rights reserved.
Schmidt, Katherine; Patnaik, Pooja; Kensinger, Elizabeth A
Individuals report remembering emotional items vividly. It is debated whether this report reflects enhanced memory accuracy or a bias to believe emotional memories are vivid. We hypothesized emotion would enhance memory accuracy, improving memory for contextual details. The hallmark of episodic memory is that items are remembered in a spatial and temporal context, so we examined whether an item's valence (positive, negative) or arousal (high, low) would influence its ability to be remembered with those contextual details. Across two experiments, high-arousal items were remembered with spatial and temporal context more often than low-arousal items. Item valence did not influence memory for those details, although positive high-arousal items were recognized or recalled more often than negative items. These data suggest that emotion does not just bias participants to believe they have a vivid memory; rather, the arousal elicited by an event can benefit memory for some types of contextual details. © 2010 Psychology Press, an imprint of the Taylor & Francis Group, an Informa business
Fenesi, Barbara; Sana, Faria; Kim, Joseph A.; Shore, David I.
In recent years, research from cognitive science has provided a solid theoretical framework to develop evidence-based interventions in education. In particular, research into reading, writing, language, mathematics and multimedia learning has been guided by the application of Baddeley's multicomponent model of working memory. However, an…
Cowan, Nelson; Li, Dawei; Moffitt, Amanda; Becker, Theresa M.; Martin, Elizabeth A.; Saults, J. Scott; Christ, Shawn E.
Over 350 years ago, Descartes proposed that the neural basis of consciousness must be a brain region in which sensory inputs are combined. Using fMRI, we identified at least one such area for working memory, the limited information held in mind, described by William James as the trailing edge of consciousness. Specifically, a region in the left…