The importance of the ventromedial prefrontal cortex for associative memory in older adults: A latent structural equation analysis

Yvonne Brehmer*, J. Nilsson*, Rasmus Berggren, Florian Schmiedek, Martin Lövdén

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

Abstract

Older adults show relatively minor age-related decline in memory for single items, while their memory for as- sociations is markedly reduced. Inter-individual differences in memory function in older adults are substantial but the neurobiological underpinnings of such differences are not well understood. In particular, the relative importance of inter-individual differences in the medio-temporal lobe (MTL) and the lateral prefrontal cortex (PFC) for associative and item recognition in older adults is still ambiguous. We therefore aimed to first establish the distinction between inter-individual differences in associative memory (recollection-based) performance and item memory (familiarity-based) performance in older adults and subsequently link these two constructs to dif- ferences in cortical thickness in the MTL and lateral PFC regions, in a latent structural equation modelling framework. To this end, a sample of 160 older adults (65–75 years old) performed three intentional item- associative memory tasks, of which a subsample (n 1⁄4 72) additionally had cortical thickness measures in MTL and PFC regions of interest available. The results provided support for a distinction between familiarity-based item memory and recollection-based associative memory performance in older adults. Cortical thickness in the ventro-medial prefrontal cortex was positively correlated with associative recognition performance, above and beyond any relationship between item recognition performance and cortical thickness in the same region and between associative recognition performance and brain structure in the MTL (parahippocampus). The findings highlight the relative importance of the ventromedial prefrontal cortex in allowing for intentional recollection- based associative memory functioning in older adults.
Original languageEnglish
Article number116475
JournalNeuroimage
Volume209
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 2020

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Recognition (Psychology)

Cite this

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title = "The importance of the ventromedial prefrontal cortex for associative memory in older adults: A latent structural equation analysis",
abstract = "Older adults show relatively minor age-related decline in memory for single items, while their memory for as- sociations is markedly reduced. Inter-individual differences in memory function in older adults are substantial but the neurobiological underpinnings of such differences are not well understood. In particular, the relative importance of inter-individual differences in the medio-temporal lobe (MTL) and the lateral prefrontal cortex (PFC) for associative and item recognition in older adults is still ambiguous. We therefore aimed to first establish the distinction between inter-individual differences in associative memory (recollection-based) performance and item memory (familiarity-based) performance in older adults and subsequently link these two constructs to dif- ferences in cortical thickness in the MTL and lateral PFC regions, in a latent structural equation modelling framework. To this end, a sample of 160 older adults (65–75 years old) performed three intentional item- associative memory tasks, of which a subsample (n 1⁄4 72) additionally had cortical thickness measures in MTL and PFC regions of interest available. The results provided support for a distinction between familiarity-based item memory and recollection-based associative memory performance in older adults. Cortical thickness in the ventro-medial prefrontal cortex was positively correlated with associative recognition performance, above and beyond any relationship between item recognition performance and cortical thickness in the same region and between associative recognition performance and brain structure in the MTL (parahippocampus). The findings highlight the relative importance of the ventromedial prefrontal cortex in allowing for intentional recollection- based associative memory functioning in older adults.",
author = "Yvonne Brehmer and J. Nilsson and Rasmus Berggren and Florian Schmiedek and Martin L{\"o}vd{\'e}n",
year = "2020",
doi = "10.1016/j.neuroimage.2019.116475",
language = "English",
volume = "209",
journal = "Neuroimage",
issn = "1053-8119",
publisher = "ACADEMIC PRESS INC ELSEVIER SCIENCE",

}

The importance of the ventromedial prefrontal cortex for associative memory in older adults : A latent structural equation analysis. / Brehmer, Yvonne; Nilsson, J.; Berggren, Rasmus; Schmiedek, Florian; Lövdén, Martin.

In: Neuroimage, Vol. 209, 116475, 2020.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

TY - JOUR

T1 - The importance of the ventromedial prefrontal cortex for associative memory in older adults

T2 - A latent structural equation analysis

AU - Brehmer, Yvonne

AU - Nilsson, J.

AU - Berggren, Rasmus

AU - Schmiedek, Florian

AU - Lövdén, Martin

PY - 2020

Y1 - 2020

N2 - Older adults show relatively minor age-related decline in memory for single items, while their memory for as- sociations is markedly reduced. Inter-individual differences in memory function in older adults are substantial but the neurobiological underpinnings of such differences are not well understood. In particular, the relative importance of inter-individual differences in the medio-temporal lobe (MTL) and the lateral prefrontal cortex (PFC) for associative and item recognition in older adults is still ambiguous. We therefore aimed to first establish the distinction between inter-individual differences in associative memory (recollection-based) performance and item memory (familiarity-based) performance in older adults and subsequently link these two constructs to dif- ferences in cortical thickness in the MTL and lateral PFC regions, in a latent structural equation modelling framework. To this end, a sample of 160 older adults (65–75 years old) performed three intentional item- associative memory tasks, of which a subsample (n 1⁄4 72) additionally had cortical thickness measures in MTL and PFC regions of interest available. The results provided support for a distinction between familiarity-based item memory and recollection-based associative memory performance in older adults. Cortical thickness in the ventro-medial prefrontal cortex was positively correlated with associative recognition performance, above and beyond any relationship between item recognition performance and cortical thickness in the same region and between associative recognition performance and brain structure in the MTL (parahippocampus). The findings highlight the relative importance of the ventromedial prefrontal cortex in allowing for intentional recollection- based associative memory functioning in older adults.

AB - Older adults show relatively minor age-related decline in memory for single items, while their memory for as- sociations is markedly reduced. Inter-individual differences in memory function in older adults are substantial but the neurobiological underpinnings of such differences are not well understood. In particular, the relative importance of inter-individual differences in the medio-temporal lobe (MTL) and the lateral prefrontal cortex (PFC) for associative and item recognition in older adults is still ambiguous. We therefore aimed to first establish the distinction between inter-individual differences in associative memory (recollection-based) performance and item memory (familiarity-based) performance in older adults and subsequently link these two constructs to dif- ferences in cortical thickness in the MTL and lateral PFC regions, in a latent structural equation modelling framework. To this end, a sample of 160 older adults (65–75 years old) performed three intentional item- associative memory tasks, of which a subsample (n 1⁄4 72) additionally had cortical thickness measures in MTL and PFC regions of interest available. The results provided support for a distinction between familiarity-based item memory and recollection-based associative memory performance in older adults. Cortical thickness in the ventro-medial prefrontal cortex was positively correlated with associative recognition performance, above and beyond any relationship between item recognition performance and cortical thickness in the same region and between associative recognition performance and brain structure in the MTL (parahippocampus). The findings highlight the relative importance of the ventromedial prefrontal cortex in allowing for intentional recollection- based associative memory functioning in older adults.

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