Olichney J.M., Taylor J.R., Hillert D.G., Chan S.H., Salmon D.P., Gatherwright J., Iragui V.J., Kutas M. fMRI congruous word repetition effects reflect memory variability in normal elderly. Neurobiology of Aging, 2010, 31(11) pp. 1975-1990


Neural circuits mediating repetition effect for semantically congruous words on functional MRI were investigated in seventeen normal elderly (mean age = 70). Participants determined if written words were semantically congruent (50% probability) with spoken statements. Subsequent cued-recall revealed robust explicit memory only for congruous items (83% versus 8% for incongruous). Event-related BOLD responses to New> Old congruous words were found in the left > right cingulate and fusiform gyri, left parahippocampal cortex, middle and inferior frontal gyri (IFG). A group with above-median subsequent recall had markedly more widespread BOLD responses than a Low- Recall subgroup, with larger responses in the left medial temporal lobe (LMTL), IFG, and bilateral cingulate gyri. The magnitude of LMTL activation (New–Old) correlated with subsequent cued-recall, while the spatial extent of LMTL activation (New> Old) correlated with recall and recognition. Both magnitude and spatial extent of left fusiform activation correlated with subsequent recall/recognition. A neural circuit of left-hemisphere brain regions, many identified as P600 generators by invasive electrophysiological studies, was activated by New> Old congruous words, likely mediating successful verbal encoding. © 2008 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.