Sensory memory during physiological aging indexed by mismatch negativity (MMN)

Ruzzoli, M. , Pirulli, C., Brignani, D., Maioli, C. and Miniussi, C. (2012) Sensory memory during physiological aging indexed by mismatch negativity (MMN). Neurobiology of Aging, 33(3), 625.e21-625.e30. (doi: 10.1016/j.neurobiolaging.2011.03.021) (PMID:21530002)

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Physiological aging affects early sensory-perceptual processes. The aim of this experiment was to evaluate changes in auditory sensory memory in physiological aging using the Mismatch Negativity (MMN) paradigm as index. The MMN is a marker recorded through the electroencephalogram and is used to evaluate the integrity of the memory system. We adopted a new, faster paradigm to look for differences between 3 groups of subjects of different ages (young, middle age and older adults) as a function of short or long intervals between stimuli. We found that older adults did not show MMN at long interval condition and that the duration of MMN varied according to the participants' age. The current study provides electrophysiological evidence supporting the theory that the encoding of stimuli is preserved during normal aging, whereas the maintenance of sensory memory is impaired. Considering the advantage offered by the MMN paradigm used here, these data might be a useful reference point for the assessment of auditory sensory memory in pathological aging (e.g., in neurodegenerative diseases).

Item Type:Articles
Additional Information:This research was supported by a Project grant from the “Ministero della Salute”.
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Ruzzoli, Dr Manuela
Authors: Ruzzoli, M., Pirulli, C., Brignani, D., Maioli, C., and Miniussi, C.
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > School of Psychology & Neuroscience
Journal Name:Neurobiology of Aging
ISSN (Online):0197-4580
Published Online:06 May 2011

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