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Perceptual deficits in amnesia: challenging the medial temporal lobe ‘mnemonic’ view

Perceptual deficits in amnesia: challenging the medial temporal lobe ‘mnemonic’ view
Perceptual deficits in amnesia: challenging the medial temporal lobe ‘mnemonic’ view
Recent animal studies suggest that the medial temporal lobe (MTL), which is thought to subserve memory exclusively, may support non-mnemonic perceptual processes, with the hippocampus and perirhinal cortex contributing to spatial and object perception, respectively. There is, however, no support for this view in humans, with human MTL lesions causing prominent memory deficits in the context of apparently normal perception. We assessed visual discrimination in amnesic cases to reveal that while selective hippocampal damaged patients could discriminate faces, objects, abstract art and colour, they were significantly poorer in discriminating spatial scenes. By contrast, patients with MTL damage, including perirhinal cortex, were significantly impaired in discriminating scenes, faces, and to a lesser extent objects, with relatively intact discrimination of art and colour. These novel observations imply that the human MTL subserves both perceptual and mnemonic functions, with the hippocampus and perirhinal cortex playing distinct roles in spatial and object discrimination, respectively.
hippocampus, perirhinal cortex, memory, perception, visual discrimination
0028-3932
1-11
Lee, A.C.
302f6247-8e92-4b16-9a9f-aa410bb4c10c
Bussey, T.J.
873d0e87-9b28-410a-b37d-3267afcb0f72
Murray, E.A.
c04a226d-4b5a-4345-8fcf-06be3543df62
Saksida, L.M.
5a958aa8-1732-407a-beda-9f5da6ce5aae
Epstein, R.A.
eb5767c4-cd92-4b78-88f5-0250f0ca5a2a
Kapur, N.
f713a6d9-5625-4492-81fb-75801b6cb12a
Hodges, J.
ac8edd25-bee0-40c7-a2f1-5da2720367bb
Graham, K.
cd46ac27-4d46-4b9b-92f7-ab5e876d9b80
Lee, A.C.
302f6247-8e92-4b16-9a9f-aa410bb4c10c
Bussey, T.J.
873d0e87-9b28-410a-b37d-3267afcb0f72
Murray, E.A.
c04a226d-4b5a-4345-8fcf-06be3543df62
Saksida, L.M.
5a958aa8-1732-407a-beda-9f5da6ce5aae
Epstein, R.A.
eb5767c4-cd92-4b78-88f5-0250f0ca5a2a
Kapur, N.
f713a6d9-5625-4492-81fb-75801b6cb12a
Hodges, J.
ac8edd25-bee0-40c7-a2f1-5da2720367bb
Graham, K.
cd46ac27-4d46-4b9b-92f7-ab5e876d9b80

Lee, A.C., Bussey, T.J., Murray, E.A., Saksida, L.M., Epstein, R.A., Kapur, N., Hodges, J. and Graham, K. (2005) Perceptual deficits in amnesia: challenging the medial temporal lobe ‘mnemonic’ view. Neuropsychologia, 43 (1), 1-11. (doi:10.1016/j.neuropsychologia.2004.07.017). (Submitted)

Record type: Article

Abstract

Recent animal studies suggest that the medial temporal lobe (MTL), which is thought to subserve memory exclusively, may support non-mnemonic perceptual processes, with the hippocampus and perirhinal cortex contributing to spatial and object perception, respectively. There is, however, no support for this view in humans, with human MTL lesions causing prominent memory deficits in the context of apparently normal perception. We assessed visual discrimination in amnesic cases to reveal that while selective hippocampal damaged patients could discriminate faces, objects, abstract art and colour, they were significantly poorer in discriminating spatial scenes. By contrast, patients with MTL damage, including perirhinal cortex, were significantly impaired in discriminating scenes, faces, and to a lesser extent objects, with relatively intact discrimination of art and colour. These novel observations imply that the human MTL subserves both perceptual and mnemonic functions, with the hippocampus and perirhinal cortex playing distinct roles in spatial and object discrimination, respectively.

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More information

Submitted date: 2005
Keywords: hippocampus, perirhinal cortex, memory, perception, visual discrimination

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 55413
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/55413
ISSN: 0028-3932
PURE UUID: c2ff8b9c-1bf0-4085-82a9-28a5693a932b

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Date deposited: 30 Jul 2008
Last modified: 13 Mar 2019 20:36

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