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Research by the Wellcome Centre for Integrative Neuroimaging has identified two distinct parts of the human brain - the neocortex and the hippocampus (a part of the brain involved in higher-order brain functions) - which protect our memories from interfering with one another.

MRI scan of the brain © Shutterstock

Researchers from the Wellcome Centre for Integrative Neuroimaging have shed light on the exact neural mechanisms that make precise memory recall possible.

The research team gave participants memory tasks to perform in the MRI scanner. Over two days participants learned two overlapping but context-dependent memories. The researchers then measured interference between the two memories on the third day in the scanner.

The findings suggest that at least two different brain regions are involved in mediating memory interference. First, the hippocampus (part of the brain involved in higher-order brain functions) separates overlapping memories using contextual-information.

Read more (University of Oxford website)

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