Episodic memory in neurodegenerative disorders: Past, present, and future

Muireann Irish, Michael Hornberger

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

4 Citations (Scopus)


While the study of cognitively intact healthy individuals offers important insights into the underlying mechanisms supporting episodic memory, it is only when the neural machinery supporting our ability to encode, store, and retrieve events is compromised that we being to appreciate the true complexity of the episodic memory system. Neurodegenerative disorders offer a compelling view of the cognitive architecture of the brain when specific neural systems break down in a coordinated fashion. In this chapter, we examine how episodic memory is disrupted in the most common subtypes of dementia, namely Alzheimer’s disease and frontotemporal dementia. We discuss behavioral and neuroimaging studies of anterograde and retrograde episodic memory deficits in these dementia subtypes, and recent advances within the field of episodic memory in which the ability to imagine the future is posited to represent a key expression of the episodic memory system.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationThe Wiley Handbook on The Cognitive Neuroscience of Memory
Number of pages19
ISBN (Electronic)9781118332610
ISBN (Print)9781118332597
Publication statusPublished - 6 Mar 2015


  • Alzheimer’s disease
  • Anterograde memory
  • Autobiographical memory
  • Behavioral variant frontotemporal dementia
  • Episodic future thinking
  • Hippocampus
  • Perirhinal cortex
  • Semantic dementia
  • Semantic memory

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