NOA OFEN, Wayne State University
Title: Development of Memory Systems in the Human Brain
Ebbinghaus Empire Series 2017-2018
Abstract: Episodic memory - the ability to encode, maintain and retrieve information - is critical for everyday functioning at all ages, yet little is known about the development of episodic memory systems and their brain substrates. In this talk, I will present data from a series of studies with which we begin to identify how functional and structural brain development underlies changes in memory functioning throughout childhood and adolescence. Using functional neuroimaging methods, including fMRI and intracranial EEG, wecharacterize the neural correlates of memory processes and identify age-related increase in memory-related activation and functionalconnectivity of the prefrontal cortex (PFC), a region that also shows protracted structural development. Using structural MRI, we also find that age-related increase in the functional contribution of the PFC to memory may be directly related to improvement in the use of mnemonic strategies with age. The hippocampus, known to be critical for episodic memory, also shows a complex pattern of age related differences across development. Using high-resolution structural MRI data, we investigate hippocampal maturation and find evidence that age differences in hippocampal subfield volumes are related to age differences in associative memory ability. Characterizingnormative development of brain systems that support episodic memory has direct implications for the understanding of memory systems in adults and aging, as well as in atypical development.
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