Working memory (WM) impairments in ADHD have been consistently reported along with deficits in attentional control. Yet, it is not clear which specific WM processes are affected in this condition. A deficient coupling between attention and WM has been reported. Nevertheless, most studies focus on the capacity to retain information rather than on the attention-dependent stages of encoding and retrieval. The current study uses a visual short-term memory binding task, measuring both behavioral and electrophysiological responses to characterize WM encoding, binding and retrieval comparing ADHD and non-ADHD matched adolescents. ADHD exhibited poorer accuracy and larger reaction times than non-ADHD on all conditions but especially when a change across encoding and test displays occurred. Binding manipulation affected equally both groups. Encoding P3 was larger in the non-ADHD group. Retrieval P3 discriminated change only in the non-ADHD group. Binding-dependent ERP modulations did not reveal group differences. Encoding and retrieval P3 were significantly correlated only in non-ADHD. These results suggest that while binding processes seem to be intact in ADHD, attention-related encoding and retrieval processes are compromised, resulting in a failure in the prioritization of relevant information. This new evidence can also inform recent theories of binding in visual WM.
- memory impairment
- working memory
- encoding and retrieval
Ortega, R., López, V., Carrasco, X., Escobar, M. J., García, A. M., Parra, M. A., & Aboitiz, F. (2020). Neurocognitive mechanisms underlying working memory encoding and retrieval in Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder. Scientific Reports, 10(1), . https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-020-64678-x