Metric and chronological time in human episodic memory

Hallvard Evensmoen, Lars M. Rimol, Henning Hoel Rise, Tor Ivar Hansen, Hamed Nili, Anderson Winkler, Asta K. Haaberg

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Received Date: 15th April 20

The relative contributions of metric and chronological time in the encoding of episodic memories are unknown. One hundred one healthy young adults viewed 48 unique episodes of visual events and were later tested on recall of the order of events (chronological time) and the precise timing of events (metric time). The behavioral results show that metric recall accuracy correlates with chronological accuracy for events within episodes, but does not play a role on larger time-scales across episodes. Functional magnetic resonance imaging during encoding and recall showed that metric time was represented in the posterior medial entorhinal cortex, as well as the temporal pole and the cerebellum, whereas chronological time was represented in a widespread brain network including the anterior lateral entorhinal cortex, hippocampus, parahippocampal cortex and the prefrontal cortex. We conclude that metric time has a role in episodic memory on short time-scales and is mainly subserved by medial temporal lobe structures.

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This is an abstract of a preprint hosted on an independent third party site. It has not been peer reviewed but is currently under consideration at Nature Communications.

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