Neuroanatomy of Memory

When thinking oI memory, there is more than one type that is currently recognized to
exist. One kind oI memory is called Declarative Memory, which is also known as explicit
memory. This memory lets a person recall Iacts and events oI times that they have experienced.
One part oI the brain that has been linked to this type oI memory is the Medial Temporal Lobe.
The structures that are within this lobe that are linked to this type oI memory are the
hippocampus, and other areas that are adjacent areas that are anatomically related to the
hippocampus, (Zola-Morgan & Squire, 1993). The way that this was Iound was based on a test
with a monkey that had a large portion oI the medial temporal lobe removed to see the damage
that was done in a patient with amnesia. This was shown that a lesion on the hippocampus and
surrounding areas caused diIIerent severe impairments to memory. With the impairment that is
caused by this lesion, it shows that this area oI the brain is very critical when relating to memory.
Another area that was discovered to be a critical area with memory is the diencephalon.
Damage to this area was Iirst discovered to have a link with memory around a hundred years
ago, (Zola-Morgan & Squire, 1993). Even though that this area has been linked to severe
impairment with memory, the actual structures inside oI the brain still have not been properly
identiIied. There are several theories to which parts may have a direct link to the damage to
memory. One is that the mammillary nuclei could have been damaged, and that is the cause oI
the memory impairment. Another is that damage to the mediodorsal thalamic nucleus could also
be a direct cause. It could also be that damage to one oI these structures alone may not cause
memory impairment, but damage to both is what could cause the problems with memory.
One part oI the brain called the basal Iorebrain could also be a culprit with damage to
memory. It is shown that people that experience something called ruptured aneurysms oI the
anterior also have a problem with persistent memory problems, (Zola-Morgan & Squire, 1993).
When this happens there is usually damage to the basal Iorebrain. When the damage occurs, the
person has a hard time remembering and the exhibit a personality change.
There are many diIIerent parts oI the brain that are known to support a person`s memory,
and there are many believed to have the same Iunction. While not everything is known about the
brain, what is known is helping out the patients that are aIIlicted by problem with memory.
Once more is known about the brain and we can Iigure out what does what and know this Ior a
certainty, all we can to is study the brain some more and Iurther our education in this particular

Zola-Morgan, S., & Squire, L. (1993). Neuroanatomy of Memory. Annual Reviews Neuroscience, 16, 547-67.
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