Glucose Modulates Event-Related Potential Components of Recollection and Familiarity in Healthy Adolescents

Document Type

Journal Article


Springer Verlag


Faculty of Computing, Health and Science


School of Exercise, Biomedical and Health Science / Centre of Excellence in Alzheimer’s Disease Research




Smith, M., Riby, L., Sunram-Lea, S., van Eekelen, A., & Foster, J. K. (2009). Glucose Modulates Event-Related Potential Components of Recollection and Familiarity in Healthy Adolescents. Psychopharmacology, 205(1), 11-20. Available here.


Introduction Behavioural evidence supports the notion that oral glucose ingestion enhances recognition memory judgements based on recollection, but not familiarity. The present study sought to clarify and extend upon these behavioural findings by investigating the influence of glucose administration on event-related potential (ERP) components that are thought to be differentially mediated by recollection and familiarity processes in healthy adolescents. Methods In a within-subjects design, participants performed a recognition memory task, during which time electroencephalogram (EEG) was recorded, subsequent to ingestion of either (a) glucose or (b) placebo in a counterbalanced order. Results Response times during the recognition memory task were observed to be faster for the glucose condition, relative to a placebo control. Further, glucose ingestion was associated with an enhanced left parietal old/new ERP effect (a marker of recollection) and an enhanced midfrontal old/new ERP effect (known to be mediated by familiarity). Discussion These findings (a) support the results of previous research that the ‘glucose memory facilitation effect’ can be extended to healthy adolescents, but (b) suggest that glucose enhances both the recollection and familiarity components of recognition memory. The observed ERP profile has important implications for the proposal that glucose specifically targets the hippocampus in modulating cognitive performance




Link to publisher version (DOI)