The ability to selectively remember important information and ignore distraction is critical for optimal memory performance, particularly when we experience a stressful or emotionally arousing event that consumes attentional resources. Evidence suggests that the locus coeruleus (LC), the part of our brain thought to instigate these selectivity processes under arousing conditions, degrades in aging and Alzheimer’s disease (AD). Yet little is known about the relationship between the LC and cognitive function in these populations. The goal of this research is thus to address a novel and critical research question: to determine the role of the LC in facilitating memory selectivity and how its role may be altered in aging and AD.
This grant is made possible in part by support from Alzheimer’s Los Angeles.