Why you can distinctly recall that school picnic after 20 years

Toronto, Dec 11 (IANS) Why is it that some people have a richly-detailed recollection of past experiences (episodic memory), while others tend to remember just the facts without details (semantic memory)?

Actually, these different ways of experiencing the past are associated with distinct brain connectivity patterns that may be inherent to the individual and suggest a life-long ‘memory trait’, a new study from Rotman Research Institute, Canada, shows.

“With ageing and early dementia, one of the first things that people notice is difficulty retrieving the details of events,” said study’s senior author Brian Levine from Rotman Research Institute.

“Yet no one has looked at how this relates to memory traits. People who are used to retrieving richly-detailed memories may be very sensitive to subtle memory changes as they age, whereas those who rely on a factual approach may prove to be more resistant to such changes,” he said.

In the study, 66 healthy young adults (average age 24) completed an online questionnaire describing how well they remember autobiographical events and facts.

Their responses fell between the extremes seen in people with Highly Superior Autobiographical Memory (HSAM) or Severely Deficient Autobiographical Memory (SDAM) recently described by memory researchers.

The participants had their brains scanned at Baycrest with resting state functional magnetic resonance imaging.

The researchers focused on connections between the brain’s medial temporal lobes and other brain regions.

Those who endorsed richly-detailed autobiographical memories had higher medial temporal lobe connectivity to regions at the back of the brain involved in visual processes, whereas those tending to recall the past in a factual manner (minus the rich details) showed higher medial temporal lobe connectivity to areas at the front of the brain involved in organisation and reasoning.

The study was published online in the journal Cortex.

Leave a Reply

Please enter your comment!

The opinions, views, and thoughts expressed by the readers and those providing comments are theirs alone and do not reflect the opinions of www.mangalorean.com or any employee thereof. www.mangalorean.com is not responsible for the accuracy of any of the information supplied by the readers. Responsibility for the content of comments belongs to the commenter alone.  

We request the readers to refrain from posting defamatory, inflammatory comments and not indulge in personal attacks. However, it is obligatory on the part of www.mangalorean.com to provide the IP address and other details of senders of such comments to the concerned authorities upon their request.

Hence we request all our readers to help us to delete comments that do not follow these guidelines by informing us at  info@mangalorean.com. Lets work together to keep the comments clean and worthful, thereby make a difference in the community.

Please enter your name here