Memories can resist interference in the new learning, study finds ;
While the acquisition of new memories can enrich the human experience, but can also interfere with the old and make them more likely to be forgotten, especially when a new event is very similar to a past experience.
postdoctoral scientist Dr. Josh Koen and Dr. Michael Rugg, director of the Center for Vital Longevity addressed in a recent study of how some memories persist despite strong interference. Koen and Rugg tested whether the “reactivation” or bring to mind old memories during the course of further increases learning or decreases the disruptive effects of new learning. His work was published in the April 13 of Journal of Neuroscience .
The researchers found that the reactivation of the generic background information on previous experience, rather than unique details for a particular event, it is important in resistance to interference effects that accompany the new learning.
While subjected to fMRI imaging (fMRI), 19 study participants some words are displayed twice in association with two different tasks trial, while other words were presented only one time. Later memory tests required participants to remember the various tasks that were associated with each of the words of study, regardless of whether the words were presented once or twice.
Koen and Rugg found that older memories that were revived harder for new learning were less likely to be forgotten. Unlike previously it thought, suggesting that the revival of old memories for new learning mitigates the effects of interference and let those old memories intact.
A prevailing hypothesis has been that if a new experience reactive older memory, that memory returns to a malleable state, which makes it susceptible to change or forgotten altogether.
Researchers tested this hypothesis to see if the revival of old memories can increase your susceptibility to interference by analyzing patterns of brain activity in 19 adults that have been scanned.
The conclusions that emerged shed light on how some memories are able to withstand the potentially negative consequence of new learning, Koen, first author of the paper.
“The results of our study suggest that when we are not aware that the memory was reactivated when aspects of a memory older in the new learning process, perhaps even reactivate is less likely to suffer interference and be forgotten, “he said.
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Posted in: Neuroscience