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Behavioral evidence for memory replay of video episodes in macaque monkeys

By Shuzhen Zuo, Lei Wang, Junghan Shin, Yudian Cai, Sang Wan Lee, Kofi Appiah, Yong-di Zhou, Sze Chai Kwok

Posted 10 Jan 2020
bioRxiv DOI: 10.1101/2020.01.10.902130

Humans recall the past by replaying fragments of events temporally. Here, we demonstrate a similar effect in macaques. We trained six rhesus monkeys with a temporal-order judgement (TOJ) task and collected 5000 TOJ trials. In each trial, they watched a naturalistic video of about 10 s comprising two across-context clips, and after a 2-s delay, performed TOJ between two frames from the video. The monkeys apply a non-linear forward, time-compressed replay mechanism during the temporal-order judgement. In contrast with humans, such compression of replay is however not sophisticated enough to allow them to skip over irrelevant information by compressing the encoded video globally. We also reveal that the monkeys detect event contextual boundaries and such detection facilitates recall by an increased rate of information accumulation. Demonstration of a time-compressed, forward replay like pattern in the macaque monkeys provides insights into the evolution of episodic memory in our lineage. Impact Statement Macaque monkeys temporally compress past experiences and use a forward-replay mechanism during judgment of temporal-order between episodes.

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