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Poster E7

Age differences in the neural representation of naturalistic events

Poster Session E - Monday, April 15, 2024, 2:30 – 4:30 pm EDT, Sheraton Hall ABC

Karen Campbell1 (, Selma Lugtmeijer2, Djamari Oetringer3, Geerligs Linda3; 1Brock University, 2University of Birmingham, 3Donders Institute for Brain, Cognition and Behaviour

Event segmentation is a fundamental process that improves understanding of current events and recall of past events (Zacks et al., 2001). Naturalistic stimuli (e.g., movies) can be used to study the neural underpinnings of event segmentation, with recent work suggesting that perceived event boundaries relate to changes in neural states that coincide in several regions across the cortex (Geerligs et al., 2022). An open question is whether these neural state changes are stable across the lifespan. Participants (N = 577, age 18–88) from the CamCAN cohort were scanned with fMRI while viewing an 8-min movie. To identify neural state boundaries, we applied the greedy state boundary search (GSBS; Geerligs et al., 2021), which identifies the optimal number of state boundaries based on correlations of brain activity over time. Participants were sorted into 34 age groups of 17 participants. Perceived event boundaries were based on another group of participants who segmented the movie outside the scanner. There was a significant effect of age on neural state duration, with longer states with increasing age. This effect was strongest in the visual cortex and medial and lateral frontal cortex. Perceived event boundaries overlapped with state changes in the ACC, dmPFC, left superior and middle frontal gyrus, and anterior insula, but there was no effect of age on this relationship. This suggests decreased differentiation between successive neural states in some regions with age. But critically, the relationship between neural states and perceived event boundaries remains similar with age, suggesting preserved coarse event segmentation.

Topic Area: LONG-TERM MEMORY: Development & aging


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April 13–16  |  2024