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Electrophysiological correlates of competitor activation predict retrieval-induced forgetting

Hellerstedt, Robin LU and Johansson, Mikael LU (2014) In Cerebral Cortex 24(6). p.1619-1629
Abstract
The very act of retrieval modifies the accessibility of memory for knowledge and past events and can also cause forgetting. A prominent theory of such retrieval-induced forgetting holds that retrieval recruits inhibition to overcome interference from competing memories, rendering these memories inaccessible. The present study tested a fundamental tenet of the inhibitory-control account: the competition-dependence assumption. Event-related potentials (ERPs) were recorded while participants engaged in a competitive retrieval task. Competition levels were manipulated within the retrieval task by varying the cue-item associative strength of competing items. In order to temporally separate ERP correlates of competitor activation and target... (More)
The very act of retrieval modifies the accessibility of memory for knowledge and past events and can also cause forgetting. A prominent theory of such retrieval-induced forgetting holds that retrieval recruits inhibition to overcome interference from competing memories, rendering these memories inaccessible. The present study tested a fundamental tenet of the inhibitory-control account: the competition-dependence assumption. Event-related potentials (ERPs) were recorded while participants engaged in a competitive retrieval task. Competition levels were manipulated within the retrieval task by varying the cue-item associative strength of competing items. In order to temporally separate ERP correlates of competitor activation and target retrieval, memory was probed with the sequential presentation of two cues: a category cue, to reactivate competitors, and a target cue. As predicted by the inhibitory-control account, competitors with strong compared to weak cue-competitor association were more susceptible to forgetting. Furthermore, competition-sensitive ERP modulations, elicited by the category cue, were observed over anterior regions and reflected individual differences in ensuing forgetting. The present study demonstrates ERP correlates of the reactivation of tightly bound associated memories (the competitors) and provides support for the inhibitory-control account of retrieval-induced forgetting. (Less)
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author
organization
publishing date
type
Contribution to journal
publication status
published
subject
in
Cerebral Cortex
volume
24
issue
6
pages
1619 - 1629
publisher
Oxford University Press
external identifiers
  • PMID:23365212
  • WOS:000336529700019
  • Scopus:84900795561
ISSN
1460-2199
DOI
10.1093/cercor/bht019
project
Cognition, Communication and Learning
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
3d41b3e2-3218-45c6-bef1-b4eb8a6d655f (old id 3358587)
date added to LUP
2013-01-10 09:48:03
date last changed
2017-01-01 03:54:12
@article{3d41b3e2-3218-45c6-bef1-b4eb8a6d655f,
  abstract     = {The very act of retrieval modifies the accessibility of memory for knowledge and past events and can also cause forgetting. A prominent theory of such retrieval-induced forgetting holds that retrieval recruits inhibition to overcome interference from competing memories, rendering these memories inaccessible. The present study tested a fundamental tenet of the inhibitory-control account: the competition-dependence assumption. Event-related potentials (ERPs) were recorded while participants engaged in a competitive retrieval task. Competition levels were manipulated within the retrieval task by varying the cue-item associative strength of competing items. In order to temporally separate ERP correlates of competitor activation and target retrieval, memory was probed with the sequential presentation of two cues: a category cue, to reactivate competitors, and a target cue. As predicted by the inhibitory-control account, competitors with strong compared to weak cue-competitor association were more susceptible to forgetting. Furthermore, competition-sensitive ERP modulations, elicited by the category cue, were observed over anterior regions and reflected individual differences in ensuing forgetting. The present study demonstrates ERP correlates of the reactivation of tightly bound associated memories (the competitors) and provides support for the inhibitory-control account of retrieval-induced forgetting.},
  author       = {Hellerstedt, Robin and Johansson, Mikael},
  issn         = {1460-2199},
  language     = {eng},
  number       = {6},
  pages        = {1619--1629},
  publisher    = {Oxford University Press},
  series       = {Cerebral Cortex},
  title        = {Electrophysiological correlates of competitor activation predict retrieval-induced forgetting},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/cercor/bht019},
  volume       = {24},
  year         = {2014},
}