Integrating Incremental Learning and Episodic Memory Models of the Hippocampal Region
By integrating previous computational models of corticohippocampal function, the authors develop and test a unified theory of the neural substrates of familiarity, recollection, and classical conditioning. This approach integrates models from 2 traditions of hippocampal modeling, those of episodic memory and incremental learning, by drawing on an earlier mathematical model of conditioning, SOP (A. Wagner, 1981). The model describes how a familiarity signal may arise from parahippocampal cortices, giving a novel explanation for the finding that the neural response to a stimulus in these regions decreases with increasing stimulus familiarity. Recollection is ascribed to the hippocampus proper. It is shown how the properties of episodic representations in the neocortex, parahippocampal gyrus, and hippocampus proper may explain phenomena in classical conditioning. The model reproduces the effects of hippocampal, septal, and broad hippocampal region lesions on contextual modulation of classical conditioning, blocking, learned irrelevance, and latent inhibition.