An fMRI study of long-term everyday memory using SenseCam.
Milton F., Muhlert N., Butler CR., Smith A., Benattayallah A., Zeman AZ.
We used a novel automatic camera, SenseCam, to investigate recognition memory for real-life events at a 5-month retention interval. Using fMRI we assessed recollection and familiarity memory using the remember/know procedure. Recollection evoked no medial temporal lobe (MTL) activation compared to familiarity and new responses. Instead, recollection activated diverse regions in neocortex including medial prefrontal cortex. We observed decreased activation in anterior hippocampus/ anterior parahippocampal gyrus (aPHG) at 5 months compared to a 36-hour retention interval. Familiarity was associated with greater activation in aPHG and posterior parahippocampal gyrus (pPHG) than recollection and new responses. Familiarity activation decreased over time in anterior hippocampus/aPHG and posterior hippocampus/pPHG. The engagement of neocortical regions such as medial prefrontal cortex at a 5-month delay, together with the reduced MTL activation at 5 months relative to at 36 hours is in line with the assumptions of Consolidation theory. SenseCam provides a valuable technique for assessing the processes that underlie remote everyday recognition memory.