Publications by authors named "Ada Aka"

2 Publications

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Predicting recall of words and lists.

J Exp Psychol Learn Mem Cogn 2020 Oct 22. Epub 2020 Oct 22.

University of Pennsylvania.

For more than a half-century, lists of words have served as the memoranda of choice in studies of human memory. To better understand why some words and lists are easier to recall than others, we estimated multivariate models of word and list recall. In each of the 23 sessions, subjects ( = 98) studied and recalled the same set of 576 words, presented in 24 study-test lists. Fitting a statistical model to these data revealed positive effects of animacy, contextual diversity, valence, arousal, concreteness, and semantic structure on recall of individual words. We next asked whether a similar approach would allow us to account for list-level variability in recall performance. Here we hypothesized that semantically coherent lists would be most memorable. Consistent with this prediction, we found that semantic similarity, weighted by temporal distance, was a strong positive predictor of list-level recall. Additionally, we found significant effects of average contextual diversity, valence, animacy, and concreteness on list-level recall. Our findings extend previous models of item-level recall and show that aggregate measures of item recallability also account for variability in list-level performance. (PsycInfo Database Record (c) 2020 APA, all rights reserved).
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1037/xlm0000964DOI Listing
October 2020

Closed-loop stimulation of temporal cortex rescues functional networks and improves memory.

Nat Commun 2018 02 6;9(1):365. Epub 2018 Feb 6.

Department of Psychology, University of Pennsylvania, 433 South University Avenue, Philadelphia, PA, 19104, USA.

Memory failures are frustrating and often the result of ineffective encoding. One approach to improving memory outcomes is through direct modulation of brain activity with electrical stimulation. Previous efforts, however, have reported inconsistent effects when using open-loop stimulation and often target the hippocampus and medial temporal lobes. Here we use a closed-loop system to monitor and decode neural activity from direct brain recordings in humans. We apply targeted stimulation to lateral temporal cortex and report that this stimulation rescues periods of poor memory encoding. This system also improves later recall, revealing that the lateral temporal cortex is a reliable target for memory enhancement. Taken together, our results suggest that such systems may provide a therapeutic approach for treating memory dysfunction.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41467-017-02753-0DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5802791PMC
February 2018