Document Detail

Gradual adaptation to auditory frequency mismatch.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  25445816     Owner:  NLM     Status:  Publisher    
What is the best way to help humans adapt to a distorted sensory input? Interest in this question is more than academic. The answer may help facilitate auditory learning by people who became deaf after learning language and later received a cochlear implant (a neural prosthesis that restores hearing through direct electrical stimulation of the auditory nerve). There is evidence that some cochlear implants (which provide information that is spectrally degraded to begin with) stimulate neurons with higher characteristic frequency than the acoustic frequency of the original stimulus. In other words, the stimulus is shifted in frequency with respect to what the listener expects to hear. This frequency misalignment may have a negative influence on speech perception by CI users. However, a perfect frequency-place alignment may result in the loss of important low frequency speech information. A trade-off may involve a gradual approach: start with correct frequency-place alignment to allow listeners to adapt to the spectrally degraded signal first, and then gradually increase the frequency shift to allow them to adapt to it over time. We used an acoustic model of a cochlear implant to measure adaptation to a frequency-shifted signal, using either the gradual approach or the "standard" approach (sudden imposition of the frequency shift). Listeners in both groups showed substantial auditory learning, as measured by increases in speech perception scores over the course of fifteen one-hour training sessions. However, the learning process was faster for listeners who were exposed to the gradual approach. These results suggest that gradual rather than sudden exposure may facilitate perceptual learning in the face of a spectrally degraded, frequency-shifted input. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled <Lasker Award>.
Mario A Svirsky; Thomas M Talavage; Shivank Sinha; Heidi Neuburger; Mahan Azadpour
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Publication Detail:
Type:  JOURNAL ARTICLE     Date:  2014-11-6
Journal Detail:
Title:  Hearing research     Volume:  -     ISSN:  1878-5891     ISO Abbreviation:  Hear. Res.     Publication Date:  2014 Nov 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2014-12-3     Completed Date:  -     Revised Date:  2014-12-3    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  7900445     Medline TA:  Hear Res     Country:  -    
Other Details:
Languages:  ENG     Pagination:  -     Citation Subset:  -    
Copyright Information:
Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
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