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Neuropsychology. 2006 Sep;20(5):566-77.

Memory for gist and detail information in Alzheimer's disease and mild cognitive impairment.

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Centre de recherche de l'Institut universitaire de geriatrie de Montreal, PQ, Canada.


Two experiments examined different forms of gist and detail memory in people with Alzheimer's disease (AD) and those with amnestic mild cognitive impairment (MCI). In Experiment 1, 14 AD, 14 MCI, and 22 control participants were assessed with the Deese-Roediger-McDermott paradigm. Results indicated that false recognition of nonstudied critical lures (gist memory) was diminished in the AD compared with the MCI and control groups; the two latter cohorts performed similarly. In Experiment 2, 14 AD, 20 MCI, and 26 control participants were tested on a text memory task. Results revealed that recall of both macropropositions (gist information) and micropropositions (detail information) decreased significantly in AD and in MCI as compared with control participants. This experiment also revealed that the impairment was comparable between gist and detail memory. In summary, the results were consistent across experiments in the AD but not in the MCI participants. The discrepancy in MCI participants might be explained by differences in the degree of sensitivity of the experimental procedures and/or by the differences in the cognitive processes these procedures assessed.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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