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Psych 346 final


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Why must you use several tests when testing for Alzheimer's?
You need to know the relative decrease in cognition compared to their previous score(s).
How do you diagnose Alzheimer's disease?
There's no definite diagnosis until autopsy, but you can use tests that determine if someone PROBABLY has Alzheimer's, the Clinical Dementia Rating (CDR) being the "gold standard."
On the CDR(Clinical Dementia Rating) scale, what is needed for a probably diagnosis of Alzheimer's Disease?
The subject needs to have impairment in the memory category, as well as 2 other categories.
Where do the plaques and tangles first appear in the brain?
The entorhinal cortex, which is attached to the hippocampus
What is the entorhinal cortex used for?
Familiarity and explicit memory
What happens to episodic memory in AD? Why?
There are deficits with new learning, which is linked to tangles in the entorhinal cortex. Damage to the entorhinal cortex cuts off the hippocampus from other cortical areas, and eventually tangles appear in the hippocampus as well. Remote memory is also impaired, but is relatively mild. Remo
What happens to semantic memory in AD?
Impairments in category fluency(more impaired than letter fluency, has a faster rate of decline) impairments with face-name relations, problems with naming in general (saying "bird" instead of "pigeon")
What happens to working memory in AD?
executive funcions are affected in early stages, storage functions affected later on.
What are some some treatments for AD?
acetylcholinesterase inhibitors(stops breakdown of acetylcholine, an important MTL neurotransmitter), Memantine(regulates glutamine), and Vitamin E/ginko/etc.(mixed results, aimed at preventing oxidative stress/inflamation)
What is spared in Korsakoff's? What is impaired?
Spared: implicit, short-term, procedural, semantic memory Impaired: epsiodic, especially recollection. Tendency to confabulate(false memories that seem real to patient, "making up" memories on the spot)
What is the most common interpretation of the cause of "pure" amnesia?
problems with consolidation. They can do deep processing but it doesn't help memory
In the Hannula et al (2006) study where they had amnesiacs look at different scenes with varying amounts of lag, how do amnesiacs perform when asked about relational info, e.g. "has the chair moved?" If asked if they had seen the scene before?
They perform as well as controls do in recognizing scenes they already looked at, but have impairments in remembering relationships between items in the room.
What is one way of bypassing the deficits amnesiacs have when teaching them new info/skills?
Use procedural learning, priming (reduce interference from errors)
In children, what is happening to: Semantic STRUCTURE, Executive FUNCTION, Hippocampally-mediated ASSOCIATIONS, training/development/compensation
Semantic STRUCTURE: developing Executive FUNCTION: developing Hippocampally-mediated ASSOCIATIONS: developing Training/development/compensation: build semantic and language abilities, increased executive (frontal and associative), hippocampus and associative abilities.
In normal aging, what is happening to: Semantic STRUCTURE, Executive FUNCTION, Hippocampally-mediated ASSOCIATIONS, training/development/compensation
Semantic STRUCTURE: intact Executive FUNCTION: declining Hippocampally-mediated ASSOCIATIONS: some decline(face-name associations) Training/development/compensation: reliance on knowledge and semantics, additional brain activations
In dementia, what is happening to: Semantic STRUCTURE, Executive FUNCTION, Hippocampally-mediated ASSOCIATIONS, training/development/compensation
Semantic STRUCTURE: declining Executive FUNCTION: declining Hippocampally-mediated ASSOCIATIONS: declining Training/development/compensation: medication, make use of remaining abilities, may have additional brain activation for early stages
In amnesiacs, what is happening to: Semantic STRUCTURE, Executive FUNCTION, Hippocampally-mediated ASSOCIATIONS, training/development/compensation
Semantic STRUCTURE: mostly intact, depends on disorder Executive FUNCTION: usually intact, depends on sourse (injury vs Korsakoff's) Hippocampally-mediated ASSOCIATIONS: usually damaged/impaired Training/development/compensation: make use of remaining abilities (implicit or explicit)
How do patients with amygdala damage compare with controls and patients with hippocampal damage in terms of skin conductance response (SCR) to fear conditioning? declarative memory?
Where controls and patients with hippocampal damage show increased SCR to the conditioned stimulus, amygdala damaged patients do not. Amygdala-damage patients show much better declarative memory than hippocampally damaged patients.
What's the difference between arousal and valence?
Arousal is the "energy level" of an emotion, valence is type of emotion. irritated (valence=angry, low arousal) vs furious (valence=angry, high arousal)
Given this list of words, which one would an amygdala-damaged patient have trouble remembering (compared to controls)? tree, window, chair, desk, murder, fork, lamp, coat
murder (the emotionally-charged word)
If witnessing an armed bank-robbery, would a patient with amygdala damage recognize the emotionality of the situation? What might they (not) focus on compared to normals?
A patient with amygdala damage could recognize the danger associated with the bank-robbery, but they wouldn't focus on the weapon like a normal might.
What's the cost of focusing on a central idea of an emotional memory?
You lose some peripheral details
What does cortisol do?
It is a stress hormone that can improve encoding, consolidation, and retrieval, but not when there is too much. Might be related to state-dependent memory
What happens when you test episodic memory and give normal subjects propranolol?
It blocks adrenaline-related arousal effects, making them more similar to patients with amygdala damage.
What is the differences in memory effect?
There is more activation in the amygdala and other temporal lobe structures when viewing emotional stimuli vs nonemotional stimuli, suggesting that the amygdala is working together with other structures when encoding emotional memories. This difference in memory correlates with being remembered better later on.
In "remember" vs "know" conditions, which show more activation in the amygdala, hippocampus, and entorhinal cortex?
Amygdala and hippocampus show more activation in the "remember" condition, entorhinal cortex shows about equal activation for both "remember" and "know."
What is autobiographical memory made up of?
Semantic memory (well practiced memories, where you might not actually recall all the details) Episodic memory
How are new memories different from old memories in terms of hippocampal representation?
Older memories are represented farther back in the hippocampus Newer memories are represented farther forward.
Which brain areas' volumes predict which kinds of memories, especially for AD patients?
the MTL volume predicts how well preserved autobiographical memories are the Left anterioro temporal cortex volume predicts the preservation of personal semantic memories. more volume -> more memories
In the Wagenaar Diary Study, which cues were effective for recalling a memory?
Who, what, where cues were effective. When cues were not.
Which memories were recalled best in the Wagenaar Diary Study?
Salient, pleasant, and emotional memories.
Some weaknesses of diary studies?
-(usually) only one subject. -limited to those memories that are notable enough to write down.
How did subjects perform in the Brewer Beeper study?
there were rarely any false memories, but there was an even distribution between recalling a different event, not recalling at all, or recalling the correct event.
How are facts and incidents related when asked for memories from different parts of life?
They are highly correlated
How is accuracy of memories?
Accuracy for what happened is pretty good. Accuracy for when it happened is not so good. Telescoping is the name for the distortion of the "when" of a memory. Usually there are stable anchor points and memories are compressed/expanded around those.
In general, what was the level of distortion in the Janssen et all news dating study?
The more recent the news event, the more accurate the subjects were. Items more that 1000 days in the past were dated too recent by about a year whereas items within the last 100 days were too recent by about 1 day.
When would someone use relative judgments for time vs absolute judgments?
For news items, as the item gets more remote there is a shift to relative dating. For autobiographical memories, subjects use absolute dating for all but the most remote memories.
In the Means et all study with doctor visits, what happened to people with four or more visits?
They had poor memory of the visits (interference!). They could improve recall by giving the right cues, like the weather that day, length of wait, try to put it in the timeline of that year.
How does the cue word method work?
Subjects are given a cue word (like "RIVER"), and asked to give a memory that's related to that word, then date it and rate it(pleasantness, importance, etc)
What is "the bump"?
The bump is a period between 10 and 30 years old where there is a disproportionate amount of memories.
When do you see "the bump"?
When using the cue word method and also when people are spontaneously recalling memories.
What are some possible explanations for the bump?
-Life scripts/schemas -Recency -Encoding and rehearsal effects NOT due to emotionality or importance
How do Easterners and Westerners compare in terms of timing and content of memories?
Timing is the same. Easterners in general report more: -generic memories -memories about others -memories about social events

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