Memory for object and object-location after lesions to the ventromedial prefrontal cortex in humans
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The aim of the present study was to investigate the effect of small unilateral lesions to the ventromedial portion of the prefrontal cortex on two memory functions: memory for objects and memory for object locations. Patients, who had undergone surgery of the anterior communicating artery aneurysm, and normal control subjects, participated in the study. The patients were subdivided into two groups: with and without unilateral resection of the gyrus rectus. Subjects were presented with two memory tests, that required remembering either simultaneously presented visual stimuli (object memory test; OMT) or locations of the stimuli (location memory test; LMT). In the OMT, patients with resection of the gyrus rectus were impaired in comparison to patients without resection and normal control subjects. In the LMT, the three groups did not differ from each other. Our results suggest that the ventromedial prefrontal cortex is specifically involved in memory for objects.
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I. Szatkowska, Nencki Institute of Experimental Biology, Department of Neurophysiology, 3 Pasteur St., 02-093 Warsaw, Poland