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Mesial temporal, diencephalic, and striatal contributions to deficits in single word reading, word priming, and recognition memory.


Fifty-three volunteer participants were studied with the fade-in task (Ostergaard, 1998) to measure naming latency, word priming, and recognition-memory performance. and with morphometric magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) techniques to measure volumes of mesial temporal lobe, diencephalic, striatal, and neocortical structures. The relationship between measures of cerebral volume loss and performance deficits was modeled using simultaneous regression analyses in which the behavioral measures were dependent variables. The results suggested that damage in both hippocampal and amygdala/entorhinal areas as well as damage in the diencephalon and the nucleus accumbens all contributed independently to the severity of recognition-memory deficits. Both caudate nucleus damage and hippocampal damage contributed independently to increased naming latency (slowed single-word reading). Finally, only damage in the hippocampus appeared to result in decreased word priming. These results provide further evidence against the assertion that word priming represents a form of memory unaffected by damage to the mesial temporal lobes.

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