Abstract

Depression is associated with reduced declarative memory performance and decreased hippocampal volume. Depression has also been associated with decreased levels of adult neurogenesis in the dentate gyrus. Computational models propose that neurogenesis is critical for the computational process of pattern separation, whereby distinct memory representations are created for very similar stimuli and events. It has been proposed that depression negatively impacts pattern separation abilities; however, a link between depression and performance in pattern separation memory tasks has yet to be investigated. Accordingly, we designed a study to investigate the relationship between pattern separation performance and the severity of depression symptoms. Participants completed a recognition memory test with high pattern separation demands as well as a set of questionnaires to gauge their level of depression. We found a negative relationship between depression scores and pattern separation scores in support of the theory that depression is negatively related to pattern separation performance.

Degree

MS

College and Department

Family, Home, and Social Sciences; Psychology

Rights

http://lib.byu.edu/about/copyright/

Date Submitted

2013-03-06

Document Type

Thesis

Handle

http://hdl.lib.byu.edu/1877/etd5935

Keywords

depression, pattern separation, neurogenesis, mood disorders

Included in

Psychology Commons

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