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Temporal dynamics of auditory what and where processing in humans
Title of the conference
11th World Congress of the International Organization of Psychophysiology (IOP)
Montreal, Quebec, Canada, July 29-August 3, 2002
International Journal of Psychophysiology
Recent evidence suggests the human auditory system is organized,like the visual system, into a ventral 'what' pathway, devoted toidentifying objects and a dorsal 'where' pathway devoted to thelocalization of objects in space w1x. Several brain regions have beenidentified in these two different pathways, but until now little isknown about the temporal dynamics of these regions. We investigatedthis issue using 128-channel auditory evoked potentials(AEPs).Stimuli were stationary sounds created by varying interaural timedifferences and environmental real recorded sounds. Stimuli ofeach condition (localization, recognition) were presented throughearphones in a blocked design, while subjects determined theirposition or meaning, respectively.AEPs were analyzed in terms of their topographical scalp potentialdistributions (segmentation maps) and underlying neuronalgenerators (source estimation) w2x.Fourteen scalp potential distributions (maps) best explained theentire data set.Ten maps were nonspecific (associated with auditory stimulationin general), two were specific for sound localization and two werespecific for sound recognition (P-values ranging from 0.02 to0.045).Condition-specific maps appeared at two distinct time periods:;200 ms and ;375-550 ms post-stimulus.The brain sources associated with the maps specific for soundlocalization were mainly situated in the inferior frontal cortices,confirming previous findings w3x. The sources associated withsound recognition were predominantly located in the temporal cortices,with a weaker activation in the frontal cortex.The data show that sound localization and sound recognitionengage different brain networks that are apparent at two distincttime periods.References1. Maeder et al. Neuroimage 2001.2. Michel et al. Brain Research Review 2001.3. Ducommun et al. Neuroimage 2002.
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