Date of Original Version
© 2016 Bursley et al.
Abstract or Description
Offline processing has been shown to strengthen memory traces and enhance learning in the absence of conscious rehearsal or awareness. Here we evaluate whether a brief, two-minute offline processing period can boost associative learning and test a memory reactivation account for these offline processing effects. After encoding paired associates, subjects either completed a distractor task for two minutes or were immediately tested for memory of the pairs in a counterbalanced, within-subjects functional magnetic resonance imaging study. Results showed that brief, awake, offline processing improves memory for associate pairs. Moreover, multi-voxel pattern analysis of the neuroimaging data suggested reactivation of encoded memory representations in dorsolateral prefrontal cortex during offline processing. These results signify the first demonstration of awake, active, offline enhancement of associative memory and suggest that such enhancement is accompanied by the offline reactivation of encoded memory representations.
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PLoS One, 11, 4, 0127522-0127522.