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Computer Game Play Reduces Intrusive Memories of Experimental Trauma via Reconsolidation-Update Mechanisms.

James EL, Bonsall MB, Hoppitt L, Tunbridge EM, Geddes JR, Milton AL, Holmes EA - Psychol Sci (2015)

Bottom Line: Intrusive memories can then flash back repeatedly into the mind's eye and cause distress.We investigated whether reconsolidation-the process during which memories become malleable when recalled-can be blocked using a cognitive task and whether such an approach can reduce these unbidden intrusions.Furthermore, both memory reactivation and playing Tetris were required to reduce subsequent intrusions (Experiment 2), consistent with reconsolidation-update mechanisms.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Medical Research Council Cognition and Brain Sciences Unit, Cambridge, United Kingdom Department of Psychiatry, University of Oxford.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus

Results of the time-series analysis in Experiment 1: Poisson distribution of the predicted likelihood of intrusive memories in the no-task control group (top row) and the reactivation-plus-Tetris group (bottom row), separately for Day 0, Day 1, and Day 2.
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fig3-0956797615583071: Results of the time-series analysis in Experiment 1: Poisson distribution of the predicted likelihood of intrusive memories in the no-task control group (top row) and the reactivation-plus-Tetris group (bottom row), separately for Day 0, Day 1, and Day 2.

Mentions: To illustrate the trajectory of intrusive memories over time, we conducted a nonlinear time-series analysis using generalized additive models. The number of intrusive memories declined faster in the reactivation-plus-Tetris group than in the control group (Fig. 2). Generalized linear models (repeated measures ANCOVA with Poisson errors) in which time was a covariate confirmed a significant interaction effect between experimental group and time, χ2(1, N = 52) = 8.05, p < .01, which illustrated a difference between the time dynamics of intrusive memories between the two experimental groups. As in the time-series analysis, the reactivation-plus-Tetris group showed a greater decline in the number of intrusive memories over time than did the control group. Further examination showed that there were no differences in the number of intrusive memories (or predicted distributions) between groups on Days 0 or 1. However, on Day 2 (24 hr after the intervention), the expected probability of no intrusive memories for the reactivation-plus-Tetris group (almost completely centered on 100% likelihood of zero intrusive memories) was greater than the expected probability for the control group not having any intrusive memories (Fig. 3). Thus, overall, the group that completed a memory-reactivation task for an experimentally induced aversive memory (24 hr after the event) followed by Tetris game play showed a substantially different time course of intrusive memory frequency over the week than did a control group.


Computer Game Play Reduces Intrusive Memories of Experimental Trauma via Reconsolidation-Update Mechanisms.

James EL, Bonsall MB, Hoppitt L, Tunbridge EM, Geddes JR, Milton AL, Holmes EA - Psychol Sci (2015)

Results of the time-series analysis in Experiment 1: Poisson distribution of the predicted likelihood of intrusive memories in the no-task control group (top row) and the reactivation-plus-Tetris group (bottom row), separately for Day 0, Day 1, and Day 2.
© Copyright Policy - open-access
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License 1 - License 2 - License 3
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC4526368&req=5

fig3-0956797615583071: Results of the time-series analysis in Experiment 1: Poisson distribution of the predicted likelihood of intrusive memories in the no-task control group (top row) and the reactivation-plus-Tetris group (bottom row), separately for Day 0, Day 1, and Day 2.
Mentions: To illustrate the trajectory of intrusive memories over time, we conducted a nonlinear time-series analysis using generalized additive models. The number of intrusive memories declined faster in the reactivation-plus-Tetris group than in the control group (Fig. 2). Generalized linear models (repeated measures ANCOVA with Poisson errors) in which time was a covariate confirmed a significant interaction effect between experimental group and time, χ2(1, N = 52) = 8.05, p < .01, which illustrated a difference between the time dynamics of intrusive memories between the two experimental groups. As in the time-series analysis, the reactivation-plus-Tetris group showed a greater decline in the number of intrusive memories over time than did the control group. Further examination showed that there were no differences in the number of intrusive memories (or predicted distributions) between groups on Days 0 or 1. However, on Day 2 (24 hr after the intervention), the expected probability of no intrusive memories for the reactivation-plus-Tetris group (almost completely centered on 100% likelihood of zero intrusive memories) was greater than the expected probability for the control group not having any intrusive memories (Fig. 3). Thus, overall, the group that completed a memory-reactivation task for an experimentally induced aversive memory (24 hr after the event) followed by Tetris game play showed a substantially different time course of intrusive memory frequency over the week than did a control group.

Bottom Line: Intrusive memories can then flash back repeatedly into the mind's eye and cause distress.We investigated whether reconsolidation-the process during which memories become malleable when recalled-can be blocked using a cognitive task and whether such an approach can reduce these unbidden intrusions.Furthermore, both memory reactivation and playing Tetris were required to reduce subsequent intrusions (Experiment 2), consistent with reconsolidation-update mechanisms.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Medical Research Council Cognition and Brain Sciences Unit, Cambridge, United Kingdom Department of Psychiatry, University of Oxford.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus