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Blockade of central cholinergic receptors impairs new learning and increases proactive interference in a word paired-associate memory task

, : Blockade of central cholinergic receptors impairs new learning and increases proactive interference in a word paired-associate memory task. Behavioral Neuroscience 118(1): 223-236

Experimental data and computational models suggest that blockade of muscarinic cholinergic receptors impairs paired-associate learning and increases proactive interference (E. DeRosa and M. E. Hasselmo, 2000; M. E. Hasselmo and J. M. Bower, 1993). The results presented here provide evidence in humans supporting these hypotheses. Young healthy subjects first learned baseline word pairs (A-B) and, after a delay, learned additional overlapping (A-C) and nonoverlapping (D-E) word pairs. As predicted, when compared with subjects who received the active placebo glycopyrrolate (4 mg/kg) and subjects who were not injected, those who received scopolamine (8 mg/kg) showed (a) overall impairment in new word paired-associate learning, but no impairment in cued recall of previously learned associates; and (b) greater impairment in learning overlapping (A-C) compared with nonoverlapping (D-E) paired associates. Reprinted by permission of the publisher.


PMID: 14979800

DOI: 10.1037/0735-7044.118.1.223

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