Behavioral and neurophysiological correlates of episodic coding, proactive interference, and list length effects in a running span verbal working memory task

Bradley R. Postle, Jeffrey S. Berger, Jeremy H. Goldstein, Clayton E. Curtis, Mark D'Esposito

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Updating refers to (1) discarding items from, (2) repositioning items in, and (3) adding items to a running working memory span. Our behavioral and fMRI experiments varied three factors: trial length, proactive interference (PI), and group integrity. Group integrity reflected whether the grouping of items at the encoding stage was violated at discarding. Behavioral results were consistent with the idea that updating processes have a relatively short refractory period and may not fatigue, and they revealed that episodic information about group context is encoded automatically in working memory stimulus representations. The fMRI results did not show evidence that updating requirements in a task recruit executive control processes other than those supporting performance on nonupdating trials. They did reveal an item-accumulation effect, in which signal increased monotonically with the number of items presented during the trial, despite the insensitivity of behavioral measures to this factor. Behavioral and fMRI correlates of PI extended previous results and rejected an alternative explanation of PI effects in working memory.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)10-21
Number of pages12
JournalCognitive, Affective and Behavioral Neuroscience
Volume1
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Mar 2001

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cognitive Neuroscience
  • Behavioral Neuroscience

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