Poster C103, Sunday, March 26, 5:00 – 7:00 pm, Pacific Concourse
The consolidation of explicit, but not implicit probabilistic sequence learning is associated with anterior delta and theta activity of post-learning Non-REM sleep
Zsofia Zavecz1,2, Peter Simor3, Karolina Janacsek1,2, Kata Horváth1,2, Csenge Török1,2, Noémi Éltető1, Orsolya Pesthy1, Dezso Nemeth1,2; 1Eötvös Loránd University, Budapest Hungary, 2Hungarian Academy of Sciences, Budapest, Hungary, 3Budapest University of Technology and Economics, Budapest, Hungary
Post-learning sleep and sleep-specific neural oscillations can facilitate off-line memory consolidation. Some of these oscillatory patterns might also be functional during a wakeful quiet rest state, however, the influence of wakeful rest on memory consolidation was only scarcely investigated. Furthermore, the beneficial impact of sleep on non-declarative, procedural skills, especially sequence learning is less conclusive. Here, we applied a complex perceptual-motor probabilistic sequence learning task in order to investigate the consolidation of two learning processes: 1) implicit statistical learning, a fundamental mechanism of the brain, which extracts and represents regularities, and 2) explicit sequence learning which is a higher-order type of learning with explicit access to the represented regularities. Young adults (N = 60) after performing the task were randomly allocated into one of three different groups to spend a one-hour off-line period in 1) a relaxed resting state, 2) an active wakeful state, or 3) asleep. EEG power was analyzed throughout the off-line period. On a behavioral level, we found no differences between these groups: statistical learning and explicit sequence learning was preserved in all groups after the off-line period. Interestingly, however, within the nap group, in frontal electrode sites, spectral power comprising the delta and theta frequency range was positively associated with the consolidation (gain) of explicit sequence learning, but not of statistical learning. Our findings indicate, that sleep-specific cortical oscillations might facilitate the consolidation of sequence learning only if an explicit representation of the sequence structure can be acquired.
Topic Area: LONG-TERM MEMORY: Skill learning