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July 2021

The role of speech production in auditory-verbal short-term memory: evidence from progressive fluent aphasia

Author(s): Patterson, K., Hodges, J. R.

Journal/Book: Neuropsychologia. 2000; 38: the Boulevard Langford Lane, Kidlington, Oxford Ox5 1GB, England. Pergamon-Elsevier Science Ltd. 125-142.

Abstract: We report investigations of auditory-verbal short-term memory (AVSTM) in a patient with progressive fluent anemic aphasia. Despite having apparently normal AVSTM as measured by digital span, FM was significantly impaired in immediate serial recall of short sequences of familiar words, and even in reproducing a single word after a filled delay of just a few seconds. In both tasks, unlike normal subjects, she produced numerous phonological errors, often consisting of phonological segments from the intended target word concatenated with segments from other words in the stimulus sequence. Her success in these tasks was modulated (i) consistently by word frequency (high > low), (ii) inconsistently by word imageability (high > low), and (iii) most dramatically by 'nameability': that is, FM was much more likely to reproduce a word correctly in AVSTM if it was a word that she could also produce successfully in picture-naming tasks. On the basis of these and additional experiments designed to exclude other interpretations, we conclude that AVSTM may be crucially supported by activation of the lexical phonological representations responsible for production of content words in speech.

Note: Article Hodges JR, MRC, Cognit & Brain Sci Unit, 15 Chaucer Rd, Cambridge CB2 2EF, ENGLAND

Keyword(s): auditory-verbal short-term memory; anemia; speech production; lexical phonological representations; progressive fluent aphasia; IMMEDIATE SERIAL-RECALL; SEMANTIC MEMORY; ARTICULATORY LOOP; LEXICAL ACCESS; WORD-LENGTH; FREQUENCY; RETRIEVAL; ACTIVATION; REPETITION; COMPLEXITY


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