Project "Interactions between memory systems in typical development and in neurodevelopmental disorders"

Research in animals and humans has revealed that there are multiple parallel but dissociable memory systems in the brain. In our laboratory, we focus on understanding the interaction between the hippocampus-dependent “cognitive” (a.k.a. declarative/explicit) memory system that encodes information in flexible, relational representations, and the dorsal striatum-dependent “habit” memory system that encodes information in fixed stimulus-response representations. Whereas the majority of our understanding of the existence and interactions between these two different memory systems comes from studies of spatial memory, this project aims to understand how these two different memory systems interact outside the spatial domain. The interaction between these different memory systems will be investigated in typically developing children and adults, and in individuals with known impairments in hippocampal-dependent cognitive processes, such as individuals with Down syndrome or with Williams syndrome.

2016 – 2021


  • Banta Lavenex, Pamela, professeure extraordinaire, UniDistance Suisse
  • Lavenex, Pierre, Ph.D. Co-PI, Laboratory of Brain and Cognitive Development, Institute of Psychology, University of Lausanne
  • Bochud, Emilie, Doctoral researcher, University of Lausanne
  • Vicari, Stefano, Ph.D. Collaborator, Bambino Gesù Children’s Hospital, Rome
  • Association Suisse du Syndrome de Williams (Switzerland)
  • ART21 Association Romande Trisomie 21 (Switzerland)
  • Associazione Famiglie Sindrome di Williams (Milano, Italy)
  • Associazione Genitori Sindrome di Williams (Italy)
  • Associazione Italiana Persone Down (Italy)



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