Causal neural network of metamemory for retrospection in primates.
Miyamoto K., Osada T., Setsuie R., Takeda M., Tamura K., Adachi Y., Miyashita Y.
We know how confidently we know: Metacognitive self-monitoring of memory states, so-called "metamemory," enables strategic and efficient information collection based on past experiences. However, it is unknown how metamemory is implemented in the brain. We explored causal neural mechanism of metamemory in macaque monkeys performing metacognitive confidence judgments on memory. By whole-brain searches via functional magnetic resonance imaging, we discovered a neural correlate of metamemory for temporally remote events in prefrontal area 9 (or 9/46d), along with that for recent events within area 6. Reversible inactivation of each of these identified loci induced doubly dissociated selective impairments in metacognitive judgment performance on remote or recent memory, without impairing recognition performance itself. The findings reveal that parallel metamemory streams supervise recognition networks for remote and recent memory, without contributing to recognition itself.