Category and attribute knowledge deterioration in Alzheimer's Disease
AuthorCox, Diane Marie, 1968-
AdvisorBayles, Kathryn A.
MetadataShow full item record
PublisherThe University of Arizona.
RightsCopyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.
AbstractChanges associated with Alzheimer's Disease (AD) in the association cortices of temporal, occipital, and parietal lobes of the brain, result in significantly impaired performance of AD subjects on tests of semantic memory. The most prevalent theory regarding the deterioration of semantic memory is that it is a bottom-up process. That is, the knowledge of attributes becomes lost or inaccessible prior to the knowledge of categories. Previous research of this theory has resulted in conflicting results. The purpose of this study was to test further the theory, while taking into account task difficulty. Thirty probable AD and 28 normal elderly subjects were administered tasks of attribute and categorical knowledge. Results revealed significant differences in performance as a result of task difficulty. These results call into question the methodology previously used to assess the bottom-up theory, as well as the ability to use attribute and categorical knowledge separately.