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Poster B149

Sleep is associated with preserved autobiographical memory richness

Poster Session B - Sunday, April 14, 2024, 8:00 – 10:00 am EDT, Sheraton Hall ABC
Also presenting in Data Blitz Session 4 - Saturday, April 13, 2024, 1:00 – 2:30 pm EDT, Sheraton Hall EF.

Nelly Matorina1 (, Jeya Scott1, Astrid Amador1, Morgan Barense1,2; 1University of Toronto, 2Rotman Research Institute

Sleep plays a role in the consolidation of episodic memories, yet little is known about how the very first night of sleep impacts autobiographical memories. In the current study, participants recorded one morning and one evening memory from their everyday lives on a smartphone application over the course of two weeks. They also completed two memory tests per day (one in the morning and one in the evening) that assessed the memory from 12 hours prior (i.e., the evening memory test pertained to the morning memory and the morning test pertained to the evening memory from the night before). Preliminary data indicated that following a sleep delay, compared to a wake delay, memories were more vivid, t(532.45) = -3.74, p < .001, easier to recall, t(534.05) = 4.82, p < .001, and felt closer in time, t(534.76) = 5.88, p < .001. We also found that dreaming about a memory was associated with an increased feeling of recency, such that evening memories that were dreamt about were reported as feeling significantly closer in time compared to memories that were not dreamt about, t(71) = 3.05, p = .003. Overall, our findings provide evidence that sleep preserves autobiographical memory vividness, ease of recall, and felt recency. We also provide the first evidence that dreaming about an autobiographical memory impacts felt recency, suggesting that hippocampal replay during dreaming may play a role in this meta-memory feature.

Topic Area: LONG-TERM MEMORY: Episodic


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April 13–16  |  2024