Many objects seen for the first time look familiar because they resemble known objects. To overcome this feeling of familiarity and detect novelty, memories of known objects must be recollected and compared to new objects. This experiment examines whether recollection performed when perceiving new items (i.e., recollection rejection) is abnormal in people who experienced a first episode of psychosis (FEP). Recollection of old items is impaired in this clinical population but it has not yet been demonstrated that this impairment influences the processing of new items. Eighteen FEP participants and 19 healthy controls completed an episodic memory task consisting of a study phase and a recognition phase. All the new objects looked familiar because they resembled the studied objects. Brain activity underlying false recognition and correct rejection of new objects was measured with functional resonance magnetic imaging and compared across groups. Behavioral responses to new items were not significantly different between the 2 groups. However, the between-groups analysis revealed significant differences in brain activity in the left middle frontal gyrus, the left inferior parietal lobule, the right superior parietal lobule, and the right temporal fusiform gyrus during the correct rejection of new items. This activity seems related to recollection rejection and suggests that FEP patients do not normally recollect information of past events when they process new items.
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