Article

Human temporal lobe activation by speech and nonspeech sounds.

Department of Neurology, Medical College of Wisconsin, Milwaukee, USA.
Cerebral Cortex (Impact Factor: 8.31). 06/2000; 10(5):512-28. DOI: 10.1093/cercor/10.5.512
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Functional organization of the lateral temporal cortex in humans is not well understood. We recorded blood oxygenation signals from the temporal lobes of normal volunteers using functional magnetic resonance imaging during stimulation with unstructured noise, frequency-modulated (FM) tones, reversed speech, pseudowords and words. For all conditions, subjects performed a material-nonspecific detection response when a train of stimuli began or ceased. Dorsal areas surrounding Heschl's gyrus bilaterally, particularly the planum temporale and dorsolateral superior temporal gyrus, were more strongly activated by FM tones than by noise, suggesting a role in processing simple temporally encoded auditory information. Distinct from these dorsolateral areas, regions centered in the superior temporal sulcus bilaterally were more activated by speech stimuli than by FM tones. Identical results were obtained in this region using words, pseudowords and reversed speech, suggesting that the speech-tones activation difference is due to acoustic rather than linguistic factors. In contrast, previous comparisons between word and nonword speech sounds showed left-lateralized activation differences in more ventral temporal and temporoparietal regions that are likely involved in processing lexical-semantic or syntactic information associated with words. The results indicate functional subdivision of the human lateral temporal cortex and provide a preliminary framework for understanding the cortical processing of speech sounds.

4 Followers
 · 
179 Views
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: How is language processed in the brain by native speakers of different languages? Is there one brain system for all languages or are different languages subserved by different brain systems? The first view emphasizes commonality, whereas the second emphasizes specificity. We investigated the cortical dynamics involved in processing two very diverse languages: a tonal language (Chinese) and a nontonal language (English). We used functional MRI and dynamic causal modeling analysis to compute and compare brain network models exhaustively with all possible connections among nodes of language regions in temporal and frontal cortex and found that the information flow from the posterior to anterior portions of the temporal cortex was commonly shared by Chinese and English speakers during speech comprehension, whereas the inferior frontal gyrus received neural signals from the left posterior portion of the temporal cortex in English speakers and from the bilateral anterior portion of the temporal cortex in Chinese speakers. Our results revealed that, although speech processing is largely carried out in the common left hemisphere classical language areas (Broca's and Wernicke's areas) and anterior temporal cortex, speech comprehension across different language groups depends on how these brain regions interact with each other. Moreover, the right anterior temporal cortex, which is crucial for tone processing, is equally important as its left homolog, the left anterior temporal cortex, in modulating the cortical dynamics in tone language comprehension. The current study pinpoints the importance of the bilateral anterior temporal cortex in language comprehension that is downplayed or even ignored by popular contemporary models of speech comprehension.
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Perception of sound categories is an important aspect of auditory perception. The extent to which the brain's representation of sound categories is encoded in specialized subregions or distributed across the auditory cortex remains unclear. Recent studies using multivariate pattern analysis (MVPA) of brain activations have provided important insights into how the brain decodes perceptual information. In the large existing literature on brain decoding using MVPA methods, relatively few studies have been conducted on multi-class categorization in the auditory domain. Here, we investigated the representation and processing of auditory categories within the human temporal cortex using high resolution fMRI and MVPA methods. More importantly, we considered decoding multiple sound categories simultaneously through multi-class support vector machine-recursive feature elimination (MSVM-RFE) as our MVPA tool. Results show that for all classifications the model MSVM-RFE was able to learn the functional relation between the multiple sound categories and the corresponding evoked spatial patterns and classify the unlabeled sound-evoked patterns significantly above chance. This indicates the feasibility of decoding multiple sound categories not only within but across subjects. However, the across-subject variation affects classification performance more than the within-subject variation, as the across-subject analysis has significantly lower classification accuracies. Sound category-selective brain maps were identified based on multi-class classification and revealed distributed patterns of brain activity in the superior temporal gyrus and the middle temporal gyrus. This is in accordance with previous studies, indicating that information in the spatially distributed patterns may reflect a more abstract perceptual level of representation of sound categories. Further, we show that the across-subject classification performance can be significantly improved by averaging the fMRI images over items, because the irrelevant variations between different items of the same sound category are reduced and in turn the proportion of signals relevant to sound categorization increases.
    PLoS ONE 02/2015; 10(2):e0117303. DOI:10.1371/journal.pone.0117303 · 3.53 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Using functional magnetic resonance imaging in awake behaving monkeys we investigated how species-specific vocalizations are represented in auditory and auditory-related regions of the macaque brain. We found clusters of active voxels along the ascending auditory pathway that responded to various types of complex sounds: inferior colliculus (IC), medial geniculate nucleus (MGN), auditory core, belt, and parabelt cortex, and other parts of the superior temporal gyrus (STG) and sulcus (STS). Regions sensitive to monkey calls were most prevalent in the anterior STG, but some clusters were also found in frontal and parietal cortex on the basis of comparisons between responses to calls and environmental sounds. Surprisingly, we found that spectrotemporal control sounds derived from the monkey calls (“scrambled calls”) also activated the parietal and frontal regions. Taken together, our results demonstrate that species-specific vocalizations in rhesus monkeys activate preferentially the auditory ventral stream, and in particular areas of the antero-lateral belt and parabelt.
    Frontiers in Neuroscience 01/2015; 9(113). DOI:10.3389/fnins.2015.00113