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Sleep. 2016 May 1;39(5):1139-50. doi: 10.5665/sleep.5772.

The Benefits of Targeted Memory Reactivation for Consolidation in Sleep are Contingent on Memory Accuracy and Direct Cue-Memory Associations.

Author information

1
Department of Psychology, University of York, United Kingdom.
2
Department of Psychology, University of Hull, United Kingdom.
3
Department of Psychology, Northwestern University, Evanston, IL.

Abstract

STUDY OBJECTIVES:

To investigate how the effects of targeted memory reactivation (TMR) are influenced by memory accuracy prior to sleep and the presence or absence of direct cue-memory associations.

METHODS:

30 participants associated each of 50 pictures with an unrelated word and then with a screen location in two separate tasks. During picture-location training, each picture was also presented with a semantically related sound. The sounds were therefore directly associated with the picture locations but indirectly associated with the words. During a subsequent nap, half of the sounds were replayed in slow wave sleep (SWS). The effect of TMR on memory for the picture locations (direct cue-memory associations) and picture-word pairs (indirect cue-memory associations) was then examined.

RESULTS:

TMR reduced overall memory decay for recall of picture locations. Further analyses revealed a benefit of TMR for picture locations recalled with a low degree of accuracy prior to sleep, but not those recalled with a high degree of accuracy. The benefit of TMR for low accuracy memories was predicted by time spent in SWS. There was no benefit of TMR for memory of the picture-word pairs, irrespective of memory accuracy prior to sleep.

CONCLUSIONS:

TMR provides the greatest benefit to memories recalled with a low degree of accuracy prior to sleep. The memory benefits of TMR may also be contingent on direct cue-memory associations.

KEYWORDS:

consolidation; memory; reactivation; slow wave sleep

PMID:
26856905
PMCID:
PMC4835313
DOI:
10.5665/sleep.5772
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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