Sept 24 Lecture Notes.docx
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Sept 24; Declarative Memory
Guest lectures are testable; understand what the technology is about and the disadvantage/advantages are of each
“Every day is alone in itself, whatever enjoyment ‘ve had, and whatever sorrow I’ve had…Right now, I’m wondering.
Have I done or said anything amiss? You see, at this moment everything looks clear to me, but what happened just
before? That’s what worries me. It’s like waking from a dream; I just don’t remember”-H.M.
- The dorsal roots control ____sensory___ information, while the ventral roots control ____motor____information
- An example of structural neuroimaging is CT
- fMRI, PET, EEG, MEG are examples of functional neuroimaging.
Questions we will answer…
- Are all learning (and memories) the same?
- If not, are there different neural circuits mediating different types of learning?
How do we study memory?
- Patient work, healthy humans, animal models
Video of Clive
- Encephalitis patient; lost ability to from and retain long term memories
- Despite severe memory loss, still has very fond affection for his wife
- Feels like he’s waking up from a dream
- Despite the fact that he can no longer form new memories nor ones from the pat, he still has the ability to play
the piano (no trouble learning new songs/ones from before); distinction between declarative and non-
- WATCH ONLINE
Meet Patient H.M.
- Bicycle accident age 9
- Epileptic seizures since age 16
- Stopped working age 27
- “Henry Gustav Molaison, born Feb.26, 1926, left no survivors. He left a legacy in science that cannot be erased.”
- Seizures originated in medial temporal lobes (MTL; common location where seizures originate) including
- Removed MTL bilaterally
- Post surgery
o No language, perceptual, or motor deficits
o IQ unchanged (118)
o Intact short-term memory-could hold thoughts in his head (40 sec or so); if you gave H.M. a digit span
task (12468) he is able to repeat the digits back to you
o However, he complained of severe memory loss
o Referred to Brenda Milner, neuropsychologist
o H.N. was radically changed
o Long-term memory loss: severely amnesic
Memory systems: lessons from H.M.
- Short term memory
o Seconds to minutes
o Digit span: 416-223-4556
- Long term memory
o Minutes to years
o Ex. capital of France, I was born in Alberta, BBQ at Jake’s house
Long Term memory loss: Amnesia
- H.M. could not remember events from the past (before the surgery) and cannot learn new events (after the
Only pages 1-2 are available for preview. Some parts have been intentionally blurred.
o Ex. High school prom, meeting his doctors, 12th birthday party, etc.
- Retained some factual knowledge from his past and can learn some new facts (ex. who he was, where he went
to school, where you were born, how many siblings do you have)
- Inability to form new memories
- Loss of memories that took place prior to brain damage
- Retrograde amnesia: inability to remember old memories
- Anterograde amnesia: inability to form new memories
- H.M. had both retrograde and anterograde amnesia
- Intact long term function in H.M.
o H.M. could learn new motor tasks
o Could not remember doing the task before
o Hence he ‘implicitly’ learned but could not ‘explicitly’ remember doing the task
o “Every time H.M. performed the task, it struck him as an entirely new experience. He had no memory
of doing it before. Yet with practice he became proficient. “At one point he said to me, after many of
these trials, ‘huh, this was easier than I thought it would be’ “ -Dr. Milner
Implicit memory in amnesia: an anecdote
- Anecdote: Psychologist Edouard Claparede put a pin between his fingers before shaking hands with a woman
with Korsakoff’s syndrome
- Several days later, the patient could not remember the event but refused to shake Claparede hand saying:
‘sometimes people hide pins in their hands’
Implicit memory in amnesia: popular culture
- In many cases, amnesia is portrayed incorrectly in film
- One exception is the movie ‘Finding Nemo’
o At one point on their journey, Dory is cautioned to go through the trench and not over it. But when
they finally get to the trench she has this intuitive feeling they should go through it not over it. Marlin
disagrees and they encounter a school of jellyfish. (Video)
Memory Systems: Lessons from H.M.
Conscious, intentional recollection of previous experience
Unconscious, non-intentional form of memory
Interview of G.O. by Dr. Levine
- Do you have a memory of when you had to speak in public?
o Well yes, I’m a call centre trainer with Modern Phone Systems, so I did a lot of speaking because I did a
lot, a lot of training all across Canada. I also went to parts of the States.
- Do you remember one time that you were speaking? Can you tell us about on incident?
o Oh yes! Well I trained thousands and thousands of clients on a wide variety of topics including
customer service, inbound and outbound telemarketing. Handling difficult customers.
- Do you remember one training session that you gave? Something that may have happened, a specific incident?
o Well for example I always recommended that people take customer service first. And I always had
people come up with four things about themselves, three that were true and one that was false. Not
necessarily in that order.
- But this was something ongoing, so every training session you would tell people this, right?
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