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Dissociation of duration-based and beat-based auditory timing in cerebellar degeneration

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Manon Grube, Freya Cooper, Professor Patrick Chinnery, Professor Tim GriffithsORCiD


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This work tests the hypothesis that the cerebellum is critical to the perception of the timing of sensory events. Auditory tasks were used to assess two types of timing in a group of patients with a stereotyped specific degeneration of the cerebellum: the analysis of single time intervals requiring absolute measurements of time, and the holistic analysis of rhythmic patterns based on relative measures of time using an underlying regular beat. The data support a specific role for the cerebellum only in the absolute timing of single subsecond intervals but not in the relative timing of rhythmic sequences with a regular beat. The findings support the existence of a stopwatch-like cerebellar timing mechanism for absolute intervals that is distinct from mechanisms for entrainment with a regular beat.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Grube M, Cooper FE, Chinnery PF, Griffiths TD

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences

Year: 2010

Volume: 107

Issue: 25

Pages: 11597-11601

Print publication date: 08/06/2010

ISSN (print): 0027-8424

ISSN (electronic): 1091-6490

Publisher: National Academy of Sciences


DOI: 10.1073/pnas.0910473107


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Funder referenceFunder name
Ataxia UK
WT061136MAWellcome Trust