Exploration of Factors Influencing Memory Reactivation and Updating
Gomez, Rebecca L.
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.
EmbargoRelease after 3-Jul-2018
AbstractMemory updating has been established; however, the mechanism supporting this alteration process is subject to disagreement. Reconsolidation theorists argue that memory updating occurs via an old memory becoming reactivated and returned to a state of susceptibility. In this state, newly presented details can become incorporated into the existing memory. As such, memory updating is an effect of old memory reactivation and new information encoding. In contrast, temporal context theory argues that the temporal context in which the old memory was initially formed is reinstated. Newly presented information becomes tagged to the old context. Therefore, at retrieval, when the old context is reinstated again, the initially bound information and the newer information are simultaneously retrieved. Within this theoretical framework, memory modification is the result of retrieval effects. In contrast, this three-paper dissertation provides evidence that reconsolidation is, at least in part, a combined reactivation and encoding effect. In paper 1, I present neural evidence of both old memory reactivation and new encoding, which demonstrates 1) that strength at reactivation predicts the likelihood that a memory will be modified and 2) that greater brain activation during new encoding predicts the extent of accurate recognition. In paper 2, I show that encoding conditions affect the extent to which new information will be misattributed to the old memory. I demonstrate that learners update explicitly encoded memories but not implicitly coded ones. Lastly, in paper 3, I demonstrate that old memories can be reactivated and altered during sleep. When old-memory reactivation is paired with a forget cue, a subsequent degeneration of the memory and its details ensues. In sum, all three papers provide evidence in support of the reconsolidation theory that memory updating occurs during old-memory reactivation and new encoding.
Degree ProgramGraduate College