Language Attribute

With respect to language attribute information, it can be shown that with the use of the previously mentioned paradigms to measure short-term memory there are severe impairments for lists of words for humans with left hippocampal or bilateral hippocampal damage, suggesting that the hippocampus plays an important role in short-term memory representation of word information as an important feature of language attribute information. There is much evidence supporting the idea of lateralization of hippocampal function in humans, with the right hippocampus representing spatial information and the left hippocampus representing linguistic information. For example, patients who had left or right temporal lobectomies that included the hippocampus were tested on a task of recall for a visual location. In this task subjects made a mark on an 8-in line in order to reproduce as close as possible the exact position of the previously shown circle. Subjects with right temporal lobe lesions were impaired on this task, whereas subjects with left temporal lobe lesions were not significantly different from control subjects. In contrast, recall of a list of words resulted in an impairment for subjects with left, but not right, temporal lobe resections. Additional support for the idea that the right hippocampus mediates memory for temporal order for novel spatial information and the left hippocampus mediates temporal order for novel linguistic information comes from the demonstration that subjects with right temporal lobe lesions are impaired relative to controls for temporal order for novel spatial location information but not for the temporal order of novel linguistic information. In contrast, subjects with left temporal lobe lesions are impaired relative to control subjects for the temporal order of novel linguistic information but not the temporal order of novel spatial information. Even though hypoxic subjects or left temporal resected patients are impaired in remembering the order of presentation of words in nonmeaningful sentences requiring the processing of new event-based linguistic information, they are not impaired in remembering the order of presentation of words in syntactically or syntactically and semantically meaningful sentences requiring the processing of knowledge-based linguistic information.

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