Memory systems in primates: episodic, semantic, and perceptual learning
Memory disorder is often produced as one component of a general loss of mental ability (‘dementia’), but in some patients amnesia is a discrete disorder, leaving intact many other cognitive abilities such as reasoning, perception, and intelligence. Neuropathological analysis of the brain damage responsible for producing discrete amnesia suggests that the critical lesion for producing this disorder is any bilateral interruption of a system of interconnected structures. Evidence for other clearly defined memory systems is less solid as yet, but experimental evidence for a dissociable semantic memory system, and for perceptual learning mechanisms that operate relatively separably from episodic and semantic memory, are discussed in this chapter.
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