Behavioral and Brain Sciences

Authors' Response
Aggleton & Brown: Episodic memory, amnesia, and hippocampus

Thanks for the memories: Extending the hippocampal-diencephalic mnemonic system

John P. Aggleton a1 and Malcolm W. Brown a2
a1 School of Psychology, Cardiff University, Cardiff, CF1 3YG, Wales
a2 Department of Anatomy, University of Bristol, Bristol, BS8 1TD, England


The goal of our target article was to review a number of emerging facts about the effects of limbic damage on memory in humans and animals, and about divisions within recognition memory in humans. We then argued that this information can be synthesized to produce a new view of the substrates of episodic memory. The key pathway in this system is from the hippocampus to the anterior thalamic nuclei. There seems to be a general agreement that the importance of this pathway has previously been underestimated and that it warrants further study. At the same time, a number of key questions remain. These concern the relationship of this system to another temporal-lobe/diencephalic system that contributes to recognition, and the relationship of these systems to prefrontal cortex activity.