The auditory cortex is the region of the brain that is responsible for processing of auditory (sound) information. The primary auditory cortex is located in the temporal lobe. There are additional areas of the human cerebral cortex that are involved in processing sound, in the frontal and parietal lobes.
Researchers at NYU Langone Medical Center have found how even brief exposure to sudden sounds or mild trauma can form permanent, long-term brain connections, or memories, in a specific region of the brain. Moreover, the research team, working with rats, says it was able to chemically stimulate those biological pathways in the locus coeruleus -- the area of the brain best known for releasing the "fight or flight" hormone noradrenaline -- to heighten and improve the animals' hearing.
In the largest U.S. clinical trial of its kind funded by the Veterans Affairs Rehabilitation Research and Development Service, researchers at the VA Portland Medical Center and Oregon Health & Science University found that transcranial magnetic stimulation significantly improved tinnitus symptoms for more than half of study participants.
Are wind farms harmful to humans? Some believe so, others refute this; this controversial topic makes emotions run high. To give the debate more objectivity, an international team of experts dealt with the fundamentals of hearing in the lower limit range of the audible frequency range (i.e. infrasound), but also in the upper limit range (i.e. ultrasound).
For neuroscientists studying the intricate mechanisms of hearing in the brain's auditory cortex, a major question has been how a listener can focus in a noisy environment, and how neurochemicals help neurons convey as much embedded information as possible for the rest of the brain to act on.
When people hear the sound of footsteps or the drilling of a woodpecker, the rhythmic structure of the sounds is striking, says Michael Wehr, a professor of psychology at the University of Oregon.
Lights, sound, action: we are constantly learning how to incorporate outside sensations into our reactions in specific situations. In a new study, brain scientists have mapped changes in communication between nerve cells as rats learned to make specific decisions in response to particular sounds. The team then used this map to accurately predict the rats' reactions. These results add to our understanding of how the brain processes sensations and forms memories to inform behavior.
Gene expression within neurons is critical for the formation of memories, but it's difficult to identify genes whose expression is altered by learning. Now researchers have successfully monitored the expression of genes in neurons after rats were exposed to auditory fear conditioning, in which a neutral auditory tone is paired with electric shock.
People who have "absolute pitch" can identify notes immediately without relying on a reference tone. Intensive research is being conducted into the neuronal basis of this extraordinary ability at the University of Zurich's Department of Neuropsychology. The researchers have now detected a close functional link between the auditory cortex in the brain and the frontal lobe in these extraordinary people - a discovery that is not only important in theory, but also in practice.
Fragile X syndrome (FXS) is a genetic disorder in humans that causes social impairments and repetitive behaviors, and other behaviors on the autistic spectrum, as well as cognitive deficits.
A University of Maryland-led research team has been awarded a three-year $1.7 million grant from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to develop new imaging technologies and data analysis techniques that will further our understanding of how large networks of neurons in the brain interact to process sensory information.
When we want to listen carefully to someone, the first thing we do is stop talking. The second thing we do is stop moving altogether. This strategy helps us hear better by preventing unwanted sounds generated by our own movements.
Prolonged exposure to loud noise alters how the brain processes speech, potentially increasing the difficulty in distinguishing speech sounds, according to neuroscientists at The University of Texas at Dallas.
New studies being launched by neurobiologist Luke Remage-Healey at the University of Massachusetts Amherst will investigate how estrogens produced in the brains of young birds enhance their ability to learn songs during a critical window during development.
Listening to a conversation in the context of a cocktail party presents a great challenge for the auditory system.
Only one third of individuals identified as being at clinical high risk for psychosis actually convert to a psychotic disorder within a 3 year follow-up period. This risk assessment is based on the presence of sub-threshold psychotic-like symptoms.
Multiple regions in the human genome are reported to be linked to musical aptitude, according to a study published this week in Molecular Psychiatry.
Minimizing a person's sight for as little as a week may help improve the brain's ability to process hearing, neuroscientists have found.
Although the brain becomes smaller with age, the shrinkage seems to be fast-tracked in older adults with hearing loss, according to the results of a study by researchers from Johns Hopkins and the National Institute on Aging. The findings add to a growing list of health consequences associated with hearing loss, including increased risk of dementia, falls, hospitalizations, and diminished physical and mental health overall.
A new brain-imaging technique enables people to 'watch' their own brain activity in real time and to control or adjust function in pre-determined brain regions. The study from the Montreal Neurological Institute and Hospital - The Neuro, McGill University and the McGill University Health Centre, published in NeuroImage, is the first to demonstrate that magnetoencephalography can be used as a potential therapeutic tool to control and train specific targeted brain regions.
Zinc, an essential nutrient, is found in every tissue in the body. The vast majority of the metal ion is tightly bound to proteins, helping them to perform biological reactions. Tiny amounts of zinc, however, are only loosely bound, or "mobile," and thought to be critical for proper function in organs such as the brain, pancreas, and prostate gland. Yet the exact roles the ion plays in biological systems are unknown.