Left-hemispheric Alpha Dynamics index the Online Encoding of Item-Order Information

Recording of Presentation


Montreal Neurological Institute 3801 rue University, Montreal, QC, H3A 2B4, CA

Talk abstract:
Our ability to encode autobiographical information into memory requires the dynamic, online organization of temporal and item feature information. Although the anatomical bases of episodic memory encoding are well-studied, the temporal limitations of many neuroimaging methods has precluded extensive investigation of the time-varying and oscillatory dynamics of this essential process. Using magnetoencephalography and a novel sequence memory paradigm in healthy adults (N = 23), I will show evidence for a left-lateralized network of regions, oscillating in the alpha frequency range, that exhibit progressive, load-dependent encoding of complex visual item-order information. This neural pattern of progressive encoding predicts efficient retrieval of item-order memories at the single trial level, and neural activity in these regions is functionally dissociated from that of "earlier" visual networks. These findings suggest that a distinct neural resource is essential for the temporal organization of visual items in active memory stores, and that this cognitive resource might be susceptible to modulation (e.g., using non-invasive stimulation) in the alpha band. 

Speaker Bio: 

Alex I. Wiesman, Ph.D. - Instructor

Cognitive Neuroscience of Development and Aging (CoNDA) Center

Department of Neurological Sciences

University of Nebraska Medical Center

Alex completed his undergraduate degrees in Neuroscience (BS) and Psychology (BA) at the University of Nebraska - Omaha, where he studied calcium channel dynamics in the vertebrate photoreceptor with patch-clamp electrophysiology. He then completed his PhD studies at the University of Nebraska Medical Center with Tony Wilson, where he widened his experimental scope to study the role of neural oscillatory activity in visuospatial function, both in healthy adults and in patients with Alzheimer's disease as a National Institutes of Health Predoctoral Fellow. Alex recently accepted a Postdoctoral Fellowship from the Canadian Institutes of Health Research to apply similar models to patients with Parkinson's disease, working with Professor Sylvain Baillet at the Montreal Neurological Institute.

Alex Wiesman - DICoN Lab

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