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Paper   IPM / Cognitive Sciences / 17363
School of Cognitive Sciences
  Title:   A Mechanistic Insight into Sources of Error of Visual Working Memory in Multiple Sclerosis
1.  A. Motahharynia
2.  A. Pourmohammadi
3.  A. Adibi
4.  V. Shaygannejad
5.  F. Ashtari
6.  I. Adibi
7.  M. Sanayei
  Status:   Published
  Journal: eLife
  Year:  2023
  Supported by:  IPM
Working memory (WM) is one of the most affected cognitive domains in multiple sclerosis (MS), which is mainly studied by the previously established binary model for information storage (slot model). Recent observations based on the continuous reproduction paradigms showed that assuming dynamic allocation of WM resources (resource model) instead of the binary hypothesis will give more accurate predictions in WM assessment. However, they have not been employed in the field of MS despite their influence in uncovering novel mechanistic insights into the WM organization. Here, by utilizing two continuous reproduction paradigms, we investigated WM dysfunction in MS. Also, by applying a computational model, the underlying structure of WM dysfunction was further explored. A total of 121 patients with MS (61 relapsing-remitting and 60 secondary progressive) and 73 healthy controls were enrolled in this study. The precision of visual WM was measured using memory-guided localization (MGL) and n-back paradigms. The classifying performance of these paradigms in distinguishing different groups was assessed using receiver operating characteristic analysis. Moreover, the sources of error in information recall were evaluated by computational modeling on n-back results. Our findings determined an overall decrease in recall precision and increased recall variability in MS. While the classifying performance of MGL was better in distinguishing MS subtypes, n-back paradigms were more accurate in discriminating healthy control from relapsing-remitting MS. The applied model showed that decreased signal-to-noise ratio and misbinding error were responsible for WM deficits in these patients. In conclusion, our results determined the magnitude of WM deficit and demonstrated misbinding error as an important component of WM dysfunction in MS. The dissociable functions of these paradigms in classifying MS subtypes provided evidence about the underlying mechanisms of WM deficits in progressive states of the disease.

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