Skip to main content

Research Repository

Advanced Search

Attention fine-tunes auditory-motor processing of speech sounds

Möttönen, Riikka; van de Ven, G.M.; Watkins, K.E.

Authors

Riikka Möttönen

G.M. van de Ven

K.E. Watkins



Abstract

The earliest stages of cortical processing of speech sounds take place in the auditory cortex. Transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) studies have provided evidence that the human articulatory motor cortex contributes also to speech processing. For example, stimulation of the motor lip representation influences specifically discrimination of lip-articulated speech sounds. However, the timing of the neural mechanisms underlying these articulator-specific motor contributions to speech processing is unknown. Furthermore, it is unclear whether they depend on attention. Here, we used magnetoencephalography and TMS to investigate the effect of attention on specificity and timing of interactions between the auditory and motor cortex during processing of speech sounds. We found that TMS-induced disruption of the motor lip representation modulated specifically the early auditory-cortex responses to lip-articulated speech sounds when they were attended. These articulator-specific modulations were left-lateralized and remarkably early, occurring 60–100 ms after sound onset. When speech sounds were ignored, the effect of this motor disruption on auditory-cortex responses was nonspecific and bilateral, and it started later, 170 ms after sound onset. The findings indicate that articulatory motor cortex can contribute to auditory processing of speech sounds even in the absence of behavioral tasks and when the sounds are not in the focus of attention. Importantly, the findings also show that attention can selectively facilitate the interaction of the auditory cortex with specific articulator representations during speech processing.

Journal Article Type Article
Publication Date Mar 12, 2014
Journal Journal of Neuroscience
Electronic ISSN 1529-2401
Publisher Society for Neuroscience
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 34
Issue 11
APA6 Citation Möttönen, R., van de Ven, G., & Watkins, K. (2014). Attention fine-tunes auditory-motor processing of speech sounds. Journal of Neuroscience, 34(11), https://doi.org/10.1523/JNEUROSCI.2214-13.2014
DOI https://doi.org/10.1523/JNEUROSCI.2214-13.2014
Keywords attention; auditory cortex; MEG; sensorimotor; speech; TMS
Publisher URL http://www.jneurosci.org/content/34/11/4064.long
Copyright Statement Copyright information regarding this work can be found at the following address: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0

Files

4064.full.pdf (392 Kb)
PDF

Copyright Statement
Copyright information regarding this work can be found at the following address: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0





You might also like



Downloadable Citations

;