Alzheimer 's Disease ( Ad ) Essay

1985 Words Nov 30th, 2016 8 Pages
Alzheimer’s disease (AD) involves brain atrophy in areas of the core network (i.e. prefrontal, parietal and temporal cortices; McKee et al., 2006). These regions have been implicated in episodic memory (EM), memories for events related to one’s personal past (Buckner et al., 2005), and mental simulation for the future (Addis, Wong, & Schacter, 2007; Hassabis, Kumaran, & Maguire, 2007). Episodic future thinking (EFT) refers to the ability to envision oneself in a future or imagined scene that one has yet to experience (Hassabis et al., 2007). Due to similar neuronal activations in EM and EFT, the episodic simulation hypothesis (ESH) was developed (Schacter & Addis, 2007), arguing that to mentally simulate for the future, one must rely on their EM and recombine different memories into a new simulation. El Haj, Antoine and Kapogiannis (2015) had two aims: the first was to support the ESH and the second was to examine whether EM and EFT shared common properties. Overall, the El Haj et al. paper falls short in its aims through lack of careful design and consideration of all possible explanations for their results. This essay will critically review the El Haj et al. study, first describing the experiment before considering its limitations, such as lack of consideration for scene construction theory (SCT), executive dysfunction in AD and verbal fluency. To meet their aims, El Haj et al. (2015) recruited 27 participants with AD and 30 controls. Participants were tasked with…

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