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Auditory attention causes gain enhancement and frequency sharpening at successive stages of cortical processing: evidence from human EEG

de Boer, Jessica; Krumbholz, Katrin

Authors



Abstract

Previous findings have suggested that auditory attention causes not only enhancement in neural processing gain, but also sharpening in neural frequency tuning in human auditory cortex. The current study was aimed to reexamine these findings, and investigate whether attentional gain enhancement and frequency sharpening emerge at the same or different processing levels, and whether they represent independent or cooperative effects. For that, we examined the pattern of attentional modulation effects on early, sensory-driven cortical auditory-evoked potentials (CAEPs) occurring at different latencies. Attention was manipulated using a dichotic listening task and was thus not selectively directed to specific frequency values. Possible attention-related changes in frequency tuning selectivity were measured with an EEG adaptation paradigm. Our results show marked disparities in attention effects between the earlier N1 CAEP deflection and the subsequent P2 deflection, with the N1 showing a strong gain enhancement effect, but no sharpening, and the P2 showing clear evidence of sharpening, but no independent gain effect. They suggest that gain enhancement and frequency sharpening represent successive stages of a cooperative attentional modulation mechanism, which appears to increase the representational bandwidth of attended versus unattended sounds.

Citation

de Boer, J., & Krumbholz, K. (2018). Auditory attention causes gain enhancement and frequency sharpening at successive stages of cortical processing: evidence from human EEG. Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience, 30(6), https://doi.org/10.1162/jocn_a_01245

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Jan 31, 2018
Online Publication Date Feb 28, 2018
Publication Date May 2, 2018
Deposit Date Feb 12, 2018
Publicly Available Date Feb 28, 2018
Journal Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience
Print ISSN 0898-929X
Electronic ISSN 1530-8898
Publisher Massachusetts Institute of Technology Press
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 30
Issue 6
DOI https://doi.org/10.1162/jocn_a_01245
Keywords Human auditory cortex, attentional modulation, repetition suppression, stimulus-specific adaptation, cortical auditory-evoked potentials (CAEPs)
Public URL http://eprints.nottingham.ac.uk/id/eprint/49723
Publisher URL https://www.mitpressjournals.org/doi/abs/10.1162/jocn_a_01245
Related Public URLs https://www.mitpressjournals.org/loi/jocn
Copyright Statement Copyright information regarding this work can be found at the following address: http://eprints.nottingham.ac.uk/end_user_agreement.pdf
Additional Information Auditory Attention Causes Gain Enhancement and Frequency Sharpening at Successive Stages of Cortical Processing—Evidence from Human Electroencephalography
Jessica de Boer and Katrin Krumbholz
Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience 30:6, 785-798.

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Copyright Statement
Copyright information regarding this work can be found at the following address: http://eprints.nottingham.ac.uk/end_user_agreement.pdf





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