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Episodic-like memory is preserved with age in cuttlefish

Abstract : Episodic memory, remembering past experiences based on unique what-where-when components, declines during ageing in humans, as does memory in non-human mammals. By contrast, semantic memory, remembering learnt knowledge without recalling unique what-where-when features, remains relatively intact with advancing age. The age-related decline in episodic memory likely stems from the deteriorating function of the hippocampus in the brain. Whether episodic memory can deteriorate with age in species that lack a hippocampus is unknown. Cuttlefish are molluscs that lack a hippocampus. We test both semantic-like and episodic-like memory in sub-adults and aged-adults nearing senescence ( = 6 per cohort). In the semantic-like memory task, cuttlefish had to learn that the location of a food resource was dependent on the time of day. Performance, measured as proportion of correct trials, was comparable across age groups. In the episodic-like memory task, cuttlefish had to solve a foraging task by retrieving what-where-when information about a past event with unique spatio-temporal features. In this task, performance was comparable across age groups; however, aged-adults reached the success criterion (8/10 correct choices in consecutive trials) significantly faster than sub-adults. Contrary to other animals, episodic-like memory is preserved in aged cuttlefish, suggesting that memory deterioration is delayed in this species.
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Contributor : Laurent Jonchère Connect in order to contact the contributor
Submitted on : Monday, September 20, 2021 - 4:40:42 PM
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Schnell-2021-Episodic-like mem...
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Alexandra K Schnell, Nicola S Clayton, Roger T Hanlon, Christelle Jozet-Alves. Episodic-like memory is preserved with age in cuttlefish. Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences, Royal Society, The, 2021, 288 (1957), pp.20211052. ⟨10.1098/rspb.2021.1052⟩. ⟨hal-03334053⟩



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