Neuronal activity in human lateral temporal cortex during serial retrieval from short-term memory

Published

Journal Article

Neuronal activity was recorded extracellularly from 20 populations in the lateral cortex of the left anterior temporal lobe of 11 patients undergoing awake craniotomy for epilepsy, during an input-distraction-retrieval measure of recent verbal memory that also included two later successive retrievals of the same information after additional distracting tasks. Changes in activity were determined for each 1 sec epoch in three major comparisons: (1) the same visual cues used for naming an input to recent memory, naming without a memory component, and a spatial matching task; (2) memory input (MI), distraction (S), and initial cued retrieval (R1) from memory, where object naming was the input to memory and naming of other objects the distractors; (3) initial retrieval (R1) and the two subsequent serial retrievals of the same information (R2, R3). Control comparisons were also made with serial naming and viewing of blank slides, and repeated naming of the same objects. In comparison 1, 13 of the 20 populations showed consistently increased activity during memory input ('memory units'); two others showed changes during language measures. In comparison 2, a significant proportion of all 20 populations, and the 13 memory units considered alone showed increased activity in initial epochs of MI and R1, confirming earlier findings of increased lateral temporal neuronal activity at memory entry and initial retrieval. In comparison 3, a significant proportion of the memory units showed increased activity in early epochs of R1 and decreased activity in late epochs of R3. This decrease in populations with increased activity at R1 was also evident when R1 was compared to R2 or R2 to R3. Control comparisons showed no evidence of general habituation or decline in activity. Increased neuronal activity occurs in many left temporal neocortical neurons with input and the initial retrieval of an item from recent verbal memory, and the activity fades rapidly with repeated retrievals.

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Haglund, MM; Ojemann, GA; Schwartz, TW; Lettich, E

Published Date

  • March 1, 1994

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 14 / 3 II

Start / End Page

  • 1507 - 1515

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 0270-6474

Citation Source

  • Scopus