External Seminar: Deconstructing and reconstructing memory, and what it means for understanding dementia

Tuesday 8 May 2018, 4.00PM to 5.00pm

Speaker(s): Professor Kim Graham, Cardiff University Brain Research Imaging Centre (CUBRIC), School of Psychology, Cardiff University, Cardiff, UK.

Abstract

I will describe recent work from neuropsychological studies, as well as functional and diffusion neuroimaging experiments, revealing that structures in the medial temporal lobe (MTL) play a critical role in perception, short-term memory and long-term memory. Critically, I will demonstrate that regions within the medial temporal lobe show functional specialisation, and that this functional specialisation is evident across different cognitive domains (such as perception and memory). Specifically, I will demonstrate that the hippocampus, together with a key white matter connection (fornix), is involved in creating and processing complex spatial representations. By contrast, I will show that perirhinal cortex, and the white matter tract linking this region with the occipital lobe (inferior longitudinal fasciculus), is essential for processing of complex individual objects.  This functional specialisation will be discussed by consideration of the evolutionary constraints that lead to human memory (https://blog.oup.com/2016/11/evolution-human-memory/), prior to touching upon how such an evolutionary framework may provide a unique way to understand the distinct cognitive and anatomical profiles seen in different forms of dementia, such as Alzheimers disease and frontotemporal dementia.

 

Location: PS/B020