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Hierarchical processing of auditory objects in humans

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Sukhbinder Kumar, Professor Tim GriffithsORCiD



This work examines the computational architecture used by the brain during the analysis of the spectral envelope of sounds, an important acoustic feature for defining auditory objects. Dynamic causal modelling and Bayesian model selection were used to evaluate a family of 16 network models explaining functional magnetic resonance imaging responses in the right temporal lobe during spectral envelope analysis. The models encode different hypotheses about the effective connectivity between Heschl's Gyrus (HG), containing the primary auditory cortex, planum temporale (PT), and superior temporal sulcus (STS), and the modulation of that coupling during spectral envelope analysis. In particular, we aimed to determine whether information processing during spectral envelope analysis takes place in a serial or parallel fashion. The analysis provides strong support for a serial architecture with connections from HG to PT and from PT to STS and an increase of the HG to PT connection during spectral envelope analysis. The work supports a computational model of auditory object processing, based on the abstraction of spectro-temporal "templates" in the PT before further analysis of the abstracted form in anterior temporal lobe areas. © 2007 Kumar et al.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Kumar S, Stephan KE, Warren JD, Friston KJ, Griffiths TD

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: PLoS Computational Biology

Year: 2007

Volume: 3

Issue: 6

Pages: 0977-0985

Print publication date: 01/06/2007

ISSN (print): 1553-734X

ISSN (electronic): 1553-7358

Publisher: Public Library of Science


DOI: 10.1371/journal.pcbi.0030100


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