Stimulation of the right entorhinal white matter enhances visual memory encoding in humans

Emily A. Mankin, Zahra M. Aghajan, Peter Schuette, Michelle E. Tran, Natalia Tchemodanov, Ali Titiz, Güldamla Kalender, Dawn Eliashiv, John Stern, Shennan A. Weiss, Dylan Kirsch, Barbara Knowlton, Itzhak Fried, Nanthia Suthana

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: While deep brain stimulation has been successful in treating movement disorders, such as in Parkinson's disease, its potential application in alleviating memory disorders is inconclusive. Objective/Hypothesis: We investigated the role of the location of the stimulating electrode on memory improvement and hypothesized that entorhinal white versus gray matter stimulation would have differential effects on memory. Methods: Intracranial electrical stimulation was applied to the entorhinal area of twenty-two participants with already implanted electrodes as they completed visual memory tasks. Results: We found that stimulation of right entorhinal white matter during learning had a beneficial effect on subsequent memory, while stimulation of adjacent gray matter or left-sided stimulation was ineffective. This finding was consistent across three different visually guided memory tasks. Conclusions: Our results highlight the importance of precise stimulation site on modulation of human hippocampal-dependent memory and suggest that stimulation of afferent input into the right hippocampus may be an especially promising target for enhancement of visual memory.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)131-140
Number of pages10
JournalBrain Stimulation
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1 Jan 2021


  • Declarative memory
  • Deep brain stimulation
  • Entorhinal cortex
  • Hippocampus
  • Intracranial electrical stimulation
  • White matter


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