People with mild cognitive impairment (MCI) are at an elevated risk of developing Alzheimer's disease or other forms of dementia. Although the neural correlates of successful memory performance in MCI have been widely investigated, the neural mechanisms involved in unsuccessful memory performance remain unknown. The current study examines the differences between patients suffering from stable amnestic MCI with multiple deficit syndromes and healthy elderly controls in relation to the neural correlates of both successful and unsuccessful encoding and recognition. Forty-six subjects (27 controls, 19 MCI) from the HelMA (Helmholtz Alliance for Mental Health in an Aging Society) completed a comprehensive neuropsychological test battery and participated in an fMRI experiment for associative face-name memory. In patients, the areas of frontal, parietal, and temporal cortices were less involved during unsuccessful encoding and recognition. A temporary dysfunction of the top-down control of frontal or parietal (or both) areas is likely to result in a non-selective propagation of task-related information to memory.
Chechko, N., Drexler, E. I., Voss, B., Kellermann, T., Finkelmeyer, A., Schneider, F., & Habel, U. (2014). Neural correlates of unsuccessful memory performance in MCI. Frontiers in Aging Neuroscience, 6(AUG). https://doi.org/10.3389/fnagi.2014.00201