The contribution of familiarity to associative memory in amnesia

  • Giovanello K
  • Keane M
  • Verfaellie M
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In Experiment 1, using the remember/know paradigm with control participants, we compared the contribution of recollection and familiarity to associative recognition for compound stimuli and for unrelated word pairs. It was demonstrated that familiarity makes a greater contribution to associative recognition of compound stimuli than to associative recognition of unrelated word pairs. In Experiment 2, we examined associative recognition memory in medial temporal lobe amnesics, diencephalic amnesics, and control participants for the stimuli employed in Experiment 1. Whereas associative recognition for compounds and unrelated words was nearly identical in control participants, associative recognition was higher for compounds than for unrelated word pairs in amnesic patients. This pattern was observed in the medial temporal amnesic group as well as in the diencephalic amnesic group. These results suggest that associative recognition in amnesia is enhanced to the extent that performance can be supported by study-induced familiarity for the studied pair. © 2006 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

Author-supplied keywords

  • Amnesia
  • Associative memory
  • Diencephalon
  • Familiarity
  • Hippocampus
  • Medial temporal lobe
  • Recognition
  • Recollection

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  • Kelly Sullivan Giovanello

  • Margaret M. Keane

  • Mieke Verfaellie

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