Anterograde and retrograde effects of benzodiazepines on memory

ScientificWorldJournal. 2006 Nov 16:6:1460-5. doi: 10.1100/tsw.2006.243.


Benzodiazepines are known as "acquisition-impairing" molecules, and their effects on anterograde memory processes are well described. In contrast, the impact of benzodiazepines on retrograde memory and, more particularly, on retrieval processes, is only marginally studied. This mini-review provides an overlook of the main studies evidencing an effect of benzodiazepines on retrograde memory, both in humans and animals, with special emphasis on retrieval processes. The conditions for the emergence of the benzodiazepine-induced retrieval impairments are also discussed.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Anti-Anxiety Agents / adverse effects*
  • Benzodiazepines / adverse effects*
  • Brain / drug effects*
  • Brain / physiopathology*
  • Cognition / drug effects*
  • Humans
  • Memory Disorders / chemically induced*
  • Memory Disorders / physiopathology*


  • Anti-Anxiety Agents
  • Benzodiazepines