Examining sleep's role in memory generalization and specificity through the lens of targeted memory reactivation

Sarah Witkowski, Eitan Schechtman, Ken A. Paller

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

Abstract

Two vital memory functions — remembering specific experiences and generalizing across many experiences — are in tension with each other. In the complementary-learning-systems model, the hippocampus allows for fast learning of unique episodic memories while the cortex slowly extracts regularities from overlapping representations. Whereas episodic memories undergo consolidation over protracted time periods, many questions remain about how memory generalization evolves over time. Sleep's role in consolidating individual memories has been convincingly demonstrated using targeted memory reactivation, a method whereby memories can be selectively strengthened through the unobtrusive presentation of learning-related stimuli during sleep. In this review, we argue that targeted memory reactivation can help advance understanding of memory transformation and the contrast between specificity and generalization.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)86-91
Number of pages6
JournalCurrent Opinion in Behavioral Sciences
Volume33
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 2020

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cognitive Neuroscience
  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Behavioral Neuroscience

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Examining sleep's role in memory generalization and specificity through the lens of targeted memory reactivation'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

  • Cite this