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Neural processing of temporal modulations and computational modelling – Heardevcomp


Infants are capable of rapidly acquiring a language through ‘simple’ exposure to speech. This remarkable ability is quite surprising given that the auditory cortex is still developing until the end of adolescence. In adults, studies have shown that the processing of acoustic information, such as variations in sound amplitude over time known as the ‘sound envelope’, is of crucial importance for speech perception. In the present study, we aim to characterise the evolution of sound envelope processing during development in infants. To this end, we are using the electroencephalography technique to measure the synchronisation of neurons with the temporal envelope of sound, which fluctuates at different rates. In order to better identify the brain regions involved in this processing during development, we will use computational models developed in collaboration with IRCAM (Dr Emmanuel Ponsot). This will enable us to better characterise the brain structures involved in processing variations in loudness, and thus to better characterise normal auditory development. A better understanding of the mechanisms involved in auditory maturation is essential if we are to better understand the causes of auditory and language pathologies.

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