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Sample records for sensory cortical processing

  1. Exploring the cortical evidence of a sensory-discrimination process.

    PubMed Central

    Romo, Ranulfo; Hernández, Adrián; Zainos, Antonio; Brody, Carlos; Salinas, Emilio

    2002-01-01

    Humans and monkeys have similar abilities to discriminate the difference in frequency between two consecutive mechanical vibrations applied to their fingertips. This task can be conceived as a chain of neural operations: encoding the two consecutive stimuli, maintaining the first stimulus in working memory, comparing the second stimulus with the memory trace left by the first stimulus and communicating the result of the comparison to the motor apparatus. We studied this chain of neural operations by recording and manipulating neurons from different areas of the cerebral cortex while monkeys performed the task. The results indicate that neurons of the primary somatosensory cortex (S1) generate a neural representation of vibrotactile stimuli which correlates closely with psychophysical performance. Discrimination based on microstimulation patterns injected into clusters of S1 neurons is indistinguishable from that produced by natural stimuli. Neurons from the secondary somatosensory cortex (S2), prefrontal cortex and medial premotor cortex (MPC) display at different times the trace of the first stimulus during the working-memory component of the task. Neurons from S2 and MPC appear to show the comparison between the two stimuli and correlate with the behavioural decisions. These neural operations may contribute to the sensory-discrimination process studied here. PMID:12217172

  2. Awake vs. anesthetized: layer-specific sensory processing in visual cortex and functional connectivity between cortical areas

    PubMed Central

    Sellers, Kristin K.; Bennett, Davis V.; Hutt, Axel; Williams, James H.

    2015-01-01

    During general anesthesia, global brain activity and behavioral state are profoundly altered. Yet it remains mostly unknown how anesthetics alter sensory processing across cortical layers and modulate functional cortico-cortical connectivity. To address this gap in knowledge of the micro- and mesoscale effects of anesthetics on sensory processing in the cortical microcircuit, we recorded multiunit activity and local field potential in awake and anesthetized ferrets (Mustela putoris furo) during sensory stimulation. To understand how anesthetics alter sensory processing in a primary sensory area and the representation of sensory input in higher-order association areas, we studied the local sensory responses and long-range functional connectivity of primary visual cortex (V1) and prefrontal cortex (PFC). Isoflurane combined with xylazine provided general anesthesia for all anesthetized recordings. We found that anesthetics altered the duration of sensory-evoked responses, disrupted the response dynamics across cortical layers, suppressed both multimodal interactions in V1 and sensory responses in PFC, and reduced functional cortico-cortical connectivity between V1 and PFC. Together, the present findings demonstrate altered sensory responses and impaired functional network connectivity during anesthesia at the level of multiunit activity and local field potential across cortical layers. PMID:25833839

  3. Awake vs. anesthetized: layer-specific sensory processing in visual cortex and functional connectivity between cortical areas.

    PubMed

    Sellers, Kristin K; Bennett, Davis V; Hutt, Axel; Williams, James H; Fröhlich, Flavio

    2015-06-01

    During general anesthesia, global brain activity and behavioral state are profoundly altered. Yet it remains mostly unknown how anesthetics alter sensory processing across cortical layers and modulate functional cortico-cortical connectivity. To address this gap in knowledge of the micro- and mesoscale effects of anesthetics on sensory processing in the cortical microcircuit, we recorded multiunit activity and local field potential in awake and anesthetized ferrets (Mustela putoris furo) during sensory stimulation. To understand how anesthetics alter sensory processing in a primary sensory area and the representation of sensory input in higher-order association areas, we studied the local sensory responses and long-range functional connectivity of primary visual cortex (V1) and prefrontal cortex (PFC). Isoflurane combined with xylazine provided general anesthesia for all anesthetized recordings. We found that anesthetics altered the duration of sensory-evoked responses, disrupted the response dynamics across cortical layers, suppressed both multimodal interactions in V1 and sensory responses in PFC, and reduced functional cortico-cortical connectivity between V1 and PFC. Together, the present findings demonstrate altered sensory responses and impaired functional network connectivity during anesthesia at the level of multiunit activity and local field potential across cortical layers. PMID:25833839

  4. A magnetoencephalography study of multi-modal processing of pain anticipation in primary sensory cortices.

    PubMed

    Gopalakrishnan, R; Burgess, R C; Plow, E B; Floden, D P; Machado, A G

    2015-09-24

    Pain anticipation plays a critical role in pain chronification and results in disability due to pain avoidance. It is important to understand how different sensory modalities (auditory, visual or tactile) may influence pain anticipation as different strategies could be applied to mitigate anticipatory phenomena and chronification. In this study, using a countdown paradigm, we evaluated with magnetoencephalography the neural networks associated with pain anticipation elicited by different sensory modalities in normal volunteers. When encountered with well-established cues that signaled pain, visual and somatosensory cortices engaged the pain neuromatrix areas early during the countdown process, whereas the auditory cortex displayed delayed processing. In addition, during pain anticipation, the visual cortex displayed independent processing capabilities after learning the contextual meaning of cues from associative and limbic areas. Interestingly, cross-modal activation was also evident and strong when visual and tactile cues signaled upcoming pain. Dorsolateral prefrontal cortex and mid-cingulate cortex showed significant activity during pain anticipation regardless of modality. Our results show pain anticipation is processed with great time efficiency by a highly specialized and hierarchical network. The highest degree of higher-order processing is modulated by context (pain) rather than content (modality) and rests within the associative limbic regions, corroborating their intrinsic role in chronification. PMID:26210576

  5. Altered sensory processing and dendritic remodeling in hyperexcitable visual cortical networks.

    PubMed

    Vannini, Eleonora; Restani, Laura; Pietrasanta, Marta; Panarese, Alessandro; Mazzoni, Alberto; Rossetto, Ornella; Middei, Silvia; Micera, Silvestro; Caleo, Matteo

    2016-07-01

    Epilepsy is characterized by impaired circuit function and a propensity for spontaneous seizures, but how plastic rearrangements within the epileptic focus trigger cortical dysfunction and hyperexcitability is only partly understood. Here we have examined alterations in sensory processing and the underlying biochemical and neuroanatomical changes in tetanus neurotoxin (TeNT)-induced focal epilepsy in mouse visual cortex. We documented persistent epileptiform electrographic discharges and upregulation of GABAergic markers at the completion of TeNT effects. We also found a significant remodeling of the dendritic arbors of pyramidal neurons, with increased dendritic length and branching, and overall reduction in spine density but significant preservation of mushroom, mature spines. Functionally, spontaneous neuronal discharge was increased, visual responses were less reliable, and electrophysiological and behavioural visual acuity was consistently impaired in TeNT-injected mice. These data demonstrate robust, long-term remodeling of both inhibitory and excitatory circuitry associated with specific disturbances of network function in neocortical epilepsy. PMID:26163822

  6. Acquired fears reflected in cortical sensory processing: A review of electrophysiological studies of human classical conditioning

    PubMed Central

    Miskovic, Vladimir; Keil, Andreas

    2012-01-01

    The capacity to associate neutral stimuli with affective value is an important survival strategy that can be accomplished by cell assemblies obeying Hebbian learning principles. In the neuroscience laboratory, classical fear conditioning has been extensively used as a model to study learning related changes in neural structure and function. Here, we review the effects of classical fear conditioning on electromagnetic brain activity in humans, focusing on how sensory systems adapt to changing fear-related contingencies. By considering spatio-temporal patterns of mass neuronal activity we illustrate a range of cortical changes related to a retuning of neuronal sensitivity to amplify signals consistent with fear-associated stimuli at the cost of other sensory information. Putative mechanisms that may underlie fear-associated plasticity at the level of the sensory cortices are briefly considered and several avenues for future work are outlined. PMID:22891639

  7. Modeling the effect of locus coeruleus firing on cortical state dynamics and single-trial sensory processing.

    PubMed

    Safaai, Houman; Neves, Ricardo; Eschenko, Oxana; Logothetis, Nikos K; Panzeri, Stefano

    2015-10-13

    Neuronal responses to sensory stimuli are not only driven by feedforward sensory pathways but also depend upon intrinsic factors (collectively known as the network state) that include ongoing spontaneous activity and neuromodulation. To understand how these factors together regulate cortical dynamics, we recorded simultaneously spontaneous and somatosensory-evoked multiunit activity from primary somatosensory cortex and from the locus coeruleus (LC) (the neuromodulatory nucleus releasing norepinephrine) in urethane-anesthetized rats. We found that bursts of ipsilateral-LC firing preceded by few tens of milliseconds increases of cortical excitability, and that the 1- to 10-Hz rhythmicity of LC discharge appeared to increase the power of delta-band (1-4 Hz) cortical synchronization. To investigate quantitatively how LC firing might causally influence spontaneous and stimulus-driven cortical dynamics, we then constructed and fitted to these data a model describing the dynamical interaction of stimulus drive, ongoing synchronized cortical activity, and noradrenergic neuromodulation. The model proposes a coupling between LC and cortex that can amplify delta-range cortical fluctuations, and shows how suitably timed phasic LC bursts can lead to enhanced cortical responses to weaker stimuli and increased temporal precision of cortical stimulus-evoked responses. Thus, the temporal structure of noradrenergic modulation may selectively and dynamically enhance or attenuate cortical responses to stimuli. Finally, using the model prediction of single-trial cortical stimulus-evoked responses to discount single-trial state-dependent variability increased by ∼70% the sensory information extracted from cortical responses. This suggests that downstream circuits may extract information more effectively after estimating the state of the circuit transmitting the sensory message. PMID:26417078

  8. Modeling the effect of locus coeruleus firing on cortical state dynamics and single-trial sensory processing

    PubMed Central

    Safaai, Houman; Neves, Ricardo; Eschenko, Oxana; Logothetis, Nikos K.; Panzeri, Stefano

    2015-01-01

    Neuronal responses to sensory stimuli are not only driven by feedforward sensory pathways but also depend upon intrinsic factors (collectively known as the network state) that include ongoing spontaneous activity and neuromodulation. To understand how these factors together regulate cortical dynamics, we recorded simultaneously spontaneous and somatosensory-evoked multiunit activity from primary somatosensory cortex and from the locus coeruleus (LC) (the neuromodulatory nucleus releasing norepinephrine) in urethane-anesthetized rats. We found that bursts of ipsilateral-LC firing preceded by few tens of milliseconds increases of cortical excitability, and that the 1- to 10-Hz rhythmicity of LC discharge appeared to increase the power of delta-band (1–4 Hz) cortical synchronization. To investigate quantitatively how LC firing might causally influence spontaneous and stimulus-driven cortical dynamics, we then constructed and fitted to these data a model describing the dynamical interaction of stimulus drive, ongoing synchronized cortical activity, and noradrenergic neuromodulation. The model proposes a coupling between LC and cortex that can amplify delta-range cortical fluctuations, and shows how suitably timed phasic LC bursts can lead to enhanced cortical responses to weaker stimuli and increased temporal precision of cortical stimulus-evoked responses. Thus, the temporal structure of noradrenergic modulation may selectively and dynamically enhance or attenuate cortical responses to stimuli. Finally, using the model prediction of single-trial cortical stimulus-evoked responses to discount single-trial state-dependent variability increased by ∼70% the sensory information extracted from cortical responses. This suggests that downstream circuits may extract information more effectively after estimating the state of the circuit transmitting the sensory message. PMID:26417078

  9. Contributions of cortical feedback to sensory processing in primary visual cortex

    PubMed Central

    Petro, Lucy S.; Vizioli, Luca; Muckli, Lars

    2014-01-01

    Closing the structure-function divide is more challenging in the brain than in any other organ (Lichtman and Denk, 2011). For example, in early visual cortex, feedback projections to V1 can be quantified (e.g., Budd, 1998) but the understanding of feedback function is comparatively rudimentary (Muckli and Petro, 2013). Focusing on the function of feedback, we discuss how textbook descriptions mask the complexity of V1 responses, and how feedback and local activity reflects not only sensory processing but internal brain states. PMID:25414677

  10. Contributions of cortical feedback to sensory processing in primary visual cortex.

    PubMed

    Petro, Lucy S; Vizioli, Luca; Muckli, Lars

    2014-01-01

    Closing the structure-function divide is more challenging in the brain than in any other organ (Lichtman and Denk, 2011). For example, in early visual cortex, feedback projections to V1 can be quantified (e.g., Budd, 1998) but the understanding of feedback function is comparatively rudimentary (Muckli and Petro, 2013). Focusing on the function of feedback, we discuss how textbook descriptions mask the complexity of V1 responses, and how feedback and local activity reflects not only sensory processing but internal brain states. PMID:25414677

  11. Discontinuity of cortical gradients reflects sensory impairment.

    PubMed

    Saadon-Grosman, Noam; Tal, Zohar; Itshayek, Eyal; Amedi, Amir; Arzy, Shahar

    2015-12-29

    Topographic maps and their continuity constitute a fundamental principle of brain organization. In the somatosensory system, whole-body sensory impairment may be reflected either in cortical signal reduction or disorganization of the somatotopic map, such as disturbed continuity. Here we investigated the role of continuity in pathological states. We studied whole-body cortical representations in response to continuous sensory stimulation under functional MRI (fMRI) in two unique patient populations-patients with cervical sensory Brown-Séquard syndrome (injury to one side of the spinal cord) and patients before and after surgical repair of cervical disk protrusion-enabling us to compare whole-body representations in the same study subjects. We quantified the spatial gradient of cortical activation and evaluated the divergence from a continuous pattern. Gradient continuity was found to be disturbed at the primary somatosensory cortex (S1) and the supplementary motor area (SMA), in both patient populations: contralateral to the disturbed body side in the Brown-Séquard group and before repair in the surgical group, which was further improved after intervention. Results corresponding to the nondisturbed body side and after surgical repair were comparable with control subjects. No difference was found in the fMRI signal power between the different conditions in the two groups, as well as with respect to control subjects. These results suggest that decreased sensation in our patients is related to gradient discontinuity rather than signal reduction. Gradient continuity may be crucial for somatotopic and other topographical organization, and its disruption may characterize pathological processing. PMID:26655739

  12. Discontinuity of cortical gradients reflects sensory impairment

    PubMed Central

    Saadon-Grosman, Noam; Tal, Zohar; Itshayek, Eyal; Amedi, Amir; Arzy, Shahar

    2015-01-01

    Topographic maps and their continuity constitute a fundamental principle of brain organization. In the somatosensory system, whole-body sensory impairment may be reflected either in cortical signal reduction or disorganization of the somatotopic map, such as disturbed continuity. Here we investigated the role of continuity in pathological states. We studied whole-body cortical representations in response to continuous sensory stimulation under functional MRI (fMRI) in two unique patient populations—patients with cervical sensory Brown-Séquard syndrome (injury to one side of the spinal cord) and patients before and after surgical repair of cervical disk protrusion—enabling us to compare whole-body representations in the same study subjects. We quantified the spatial gradient of cortical activation and evaluated the divergence from a continuous pattern. Gradient continuity was found to be disturbed at the primary somatosensory cortex (S1) and the supplementary motor area (SMA), in both patient populations: contralateral to the disturbed body side in the Brown-Séquard group and before repair in the surgical group, which was further improved after intervention. Results corresponding to the nondisturbed body side and after surgical repair were comparable with control subjects. No difference was found in the fMRI signal power between the different conditions in the two groups, as well as with respect to control subjects. These results suggest that decreased sensation in our patients is related to gradient discontinuity rather than signal reduction. Gradient continuity may be crucial for somatotopic and other topographical organization, and its disruption may characterize pathological processing. PMID:26655739

  13. Cortical sensory plasticity in a model of migraine with aura

    PubMed Central

    Theriot, Jeremy J.; Toga, Arthur W.; Prakash, Neal; Ju, Y. Sungtaek; Brennan, K.C.

    2012-01-01

    The migraine attack is characterized by alterations in sensory perception, such as photophobia or allodynia, which have in common an uncomfortable amplification of the percept. It is not known how these changes arise. We evaluated the ability of cortical spreading depression (CSD), the proposed mechanism of the migraine aura, to shape the cortical activity that underlies sensory perception. We measured forepaw- and hindpaw-evoked sensory responses in rat, before and after CSD, using multi-electrode array recordings and 2-dimensional optical spectroscopy. CSD significantly altered cortical sensory processing on a timescale compatible with the duration of the migraine attack. Both electrophysiological and hemodynamic maps had a reduced surface area (were sharpened) after CSD. Electrophysiological responses were potentiated at the receptive field center, but suppressed in surround regions. Finally, the normal adaptation of sensory evoked responses was attenuated at the receptive field center. In summary, we show that CSD induces changes in the evoked cortical response that are consistent with known mechanisms of cortical plasticity. These mechanisms provide a novel neurobiological substrate to explain the sensory alterations of the migraine attack. PMID:23115163

  14. Cortical gating of oropharyngeal sensory stimuli.

    PubMed

    Wheeler-Hegland, Karen; Pitts, Teresa; Davenport, Paul W

    2010-01-01

    Somatosensory evoked potentials provide a measure of cortical neuronal activation in response to various types of sensory stimuli. In order to prevent flooding of the cortex with redundant information various sensory stimuli are gated cortically such that response to stimulus 2 (S2) is significantly reduced in amplitude compared to stimulus 1 (S1). Upper airway protective mechanisms, such as swallowing and cough, are dependent on sensory input for triggering and modifying their motor output. Thus, it was hypothesized that central neural gating would be absent for paired-air puff stimuli applied to the oropharynx. Twenty-three healthy adults (18-35 years) served as research participants. Pharyngeal sensory evoked potentials (PSEPs) were measured via 32-electrode cap (10-20 system) connected to SynAmps(2) Neuroscan EEG System. Paired-pulse air puffs were delivered with an inter-stimulus interval of 500 ms to the oropharynx using a thin polyethylene tube connected to a flexible laryngoscope. Data were analyzed using descriptive statistics and a repeated measures analysis of variance. There were no significant differences found for the amplitudes S1 and S2 for any of the four component PSEP peaks. Mean gating ratios were above 0.90 for each peak. Results supports our hypothesis that sensory central neural gating would be absent for component PSEP peaks with paired-pulse stimuli delivered to the oropharynx. This may be related to the need for constant sensory monitoring necessary for adequate airway protection associated with swallowing and coughing. PMID:21423402

  15. Bidirectional plasticity of cortical pattern recognition and behavioral sensory acuity

    PubMed Central

    Chapuis, Julie; Wilson, Donald A.

    2011-01-01

    Learning to adapt to a complex and fluctuating environment requires the ability to adjust neural representations of sensory stimuli. Through pattern completion processes, cortical networks can reconstruct familiar patterns from degraded input patterns, while pattern separation processes allow discrimination of even highly overlapping inputs. Here we show that the balance between pattern separation and completion is experience-dependent. Rats given extensive training with overlapping complex odorant mixtures show improved behavioral discrimination ability and enhanced cortical ensemble pattern separation. In contrast, behavioral training to disregard normally detectable differences between overlapping mixtures results in impaired cortical ensemble pattern separation (enhanced pattern completion) and impaired discrimination. This bidirectional effect was not found in the olfactory bulb, and may be due to plasticity within olfactory cortex itself. Thus pattern recognition, and the balance between pattern separation and completion, is highly malleable based on task demands and occurs in concert with changes in perceptual performance. PMID:22101640

  16. Efficient sensory cortical coding optimizes pursuit eye movements.

    PubMed

    Liu, Bing; Macellaio, Matthew V; Osborne, Leslie C

    2016-01-01

    In the natural world, the statistics of sensory stimuli fluctuate across a wide range. In theory, the brain could maximize information recovery if sensory neurons adaptively rescale their sensitivity to the current range of inputs. Such adaptive coding has been observed in a variety of systems, but the premise that adaptation optimizes behaviour has not been tested. Here we show that adaptation in cortical sensory neurons maximizes information about visual motion in pursuit eye movements guided by that cortical activity. We find that gain adaptation drives a rapid (<100 ms) recovery of information after shifts in motion variance, because the neurons and behaviour rescale their sensitivity to motion fluctuations. Both neurons and pursuit rapidly adopt a response gain that maximizes motion information and minimizes tracking errors. Thus, efficient sensory coding is not simply an ideal standard but a description of real sensory computation that manifests in improved behavioural performance. PMID:27611214

  17. Long-term modification of cortical synapses improves sensory perception

    PubMed Central

    Froemke, Robert C.; Carcea, Ioana; Barker, Alison J.; Yuan, Kexin; Seybold, Bryan; Martins, Ana Raquel O.; Zaika, Natalya; Bernstein, Hannah; Wachs, Megan; Levis, Philip A.; Polley, Daniel B.; Merzenich, Michael M.; Schreiner, Christoph E.

    2013-01-01

    Synapses and receptive fields of the cerebral cortex are plastic. However, changes to specific inputs must be coordinated within neural networks to ensure that excitability and feature selectivity are appropriately configured for perception of the sensory environment. Long-lasting enhancements and decrements to rat primary auditory cortical excitatory synaptic strength were induced by pairing acoustic stimuli with activation of the nucleus basalis neuromodulatory system. Here we report that these synaptic modifications were approximately balanced across individual receptive fields, conserving mean excitation while reducing overall response variability. Decreased response variability should increase detection and recognition of near-threshold or previously imperceptible stimuli, as we found in behaving animals. Thus, modification of cortical inputs leads to wide-scale synaptic changes, which are related to improved sensory perception and enhanced behavioral performance. PMID:23178974

  18. Cortical organization in insectivora: the parallel evolution of the sensory periphery and the brain.

    PubMed

    Catania, K C

    2000-06-01

    Insectivores are traditionally described as a primitive group that has not changed much in the course of mammalian evolution. In contrast, recent studies reveal a great diversity of sensorimotor specializations among insectivores adapted to a number of different ecological niches, indicating that there has been significant diversification and change in the course of their evolution. Here the organization of sensory cortex is compared in the African hedgehog (Atelerix albiventris), the masked shrew (Sorex cinereus), the eastern mole (Scalopus aquaticus), and the star-nosed mole (Condylura cristata). Each of these four closely related species lives in a unique ecological niche, exhibits a different repertoire of behaviors, and has a different configuration of peripheral sensory receptors. Corresponding specializations of cortical sensory areas reveal a number of ways in which the cortex has evolved in parallel with changes to the sensory periphery. These specializations include expansion of cortical representations (cortical magnification), the addition or loss of cortical areas in the processing network, and the subdivision of areas into modules (barrels and stripes). PMID:10971016

  19. Correlation between Cortical State and Locus Coeruleus Activity: Implications for Sensory Coding in Rat Barrel Cortex

    PubMed Central

    Fazlali, Zeinab; Ranjbar-Slamloo, Yadollah; Adibi, Mehdi; Arabzadeh, Ehsan

    2016-01-01

    Cortical state modulates the background activity of cortical neurons, and their evoked response to sensory stimulation. Multiple mechanisms are involved in switching between cortical states including various neuromodulatory systems. Locus Coeruleus (LC) is one of the major neuromodulatory nuclei in the brainstem with widespread projections throughout the brain and modulates the activity of cells and networks. Here, we quantified the link between the LC spontaneous activity, cortical state and sensory processing in the rat vibrissal somatosensory “barrel” cortex (BC). We simultaneously recorded unit activity from LC and BC along with prefrontal electroencephalogram (EEG) while presenting brief whisker deflections under urethane anesthesia. The ratio of low to high frequency components of EEG (referred to as the L/H ratio) was employed to identify cortical state. We found that the spontaneous activity of LC units exhibited a negative correlation with the L/H ratio. Cross-correlation analysis revealed that changes in LC firing preceded changes in the cortical state: the correlation of the LC firing profile with the L/H ratio was maximal at an average lag of −1.2 s. We further quantified BC neuronal responses to whisker stimulation during the synchronized and desynchronized states. In the desynchronized state, BC neurons showed lower stimulus detection threshold, higher response fidelity, and shorter response latency. The most prominent change was observed in the late phase of BC evoked activity (100–400 ms post stimulus onset): almost every BC unit exhibited a greater late response during the desynchronized state. Categorization of the BC evoked responses based on LC activity (into high and low LC discharge rates) resulted in highly similar response profiles compared to categorization based on the cortical state (low and high L/H ratios). These findings provide evidence for the involvement of the LC neuromodulatory system in desynchronization of cortical state

  20. Flexibility and Stability in Sensory Processing Revealed Using Visual-to-Auditory Sensory Substitution.

    PubMed

    Hertz, Uri; Amedi, Amir

    2015-08-01

    The classical view of sensory processing involves independent processing in sensory cortices and multisensory integration in associative areas. This hierarchical structure has been challenged by evidence of multisensory responses in sensory areas, and dynamic weighting of sensory inputs in associative areas, thus far reported independently. Here, we used a visual-to-auditory sensory substitution algorithm (SSA) to manipulate the information conveyed by sensory inputs while keeping the stimuli intact. During scan sessions before and after SSA learning, subjects were presented with visual images and auditory soundscapes. The findings reveal 2 dynamic processes. First, crossmodal attenuation of sensory cortices changed direction after SSA learning from visual attenuations of the auditory cortex to auditory attenuations of the visual cortex. Secondly, associative areas changed their sensory response profile from strongest response for visual to that for auditory. The interaction between these phenomena may play an important role in multisensory processing. Consistent features were also found in the sensory dominance in sensory areas and audiovisual convergence in associative area Middle Temporal Gyrus. These 2 factors allow for both stability and a fast, dynamic tuning of the system when required. PMID:24518756

  1. Remodeling sensory cortical maps implants specific behavioral memory.

    PubMed

    Bieszczad, K M; Miasnikov, A A; Weinberger, N M

    2013-08-29

    Neural mechanisms underlying the capacity of memory to be rich in sensory detail are largely unknown. A candidate mechanism is learning-induced plasticity that remodels the adult sensory cortex. Here, expansion in the primary auditory cortical (A1) tonotopic map of rats was induced by pairing a 3.66-kHz tone with activation of the nucleus basalis, mimicking the effects of natural associative learning. Remodeling of A1 produced de novo specific behavioral memory, but neither memory nor plasticity was consistently at the frequency of the paired tone, which typically decreased in A1 representation. Rather, there was a specific match between individual subjects' area of expansion and the tone that was strongest in each animal's memory, as determined by post-training frequency generalization gradients. These findings provide the first demonstration of a match between the artificial induction of specific neural representational plasticity and artificial induction of behavioral memory. As such, together with prior and present findings for detection, correlation and mimicry of plasticity with the acquisition of memory, they satisfy a key criterion for neural substrates of memory. This demonstrates that directly remodeling sensory cortical maps is sufficient for the specificity of memory formation. PMID:23639876

  2. Maximizing Sensory Dynamic Range by Tuning the Cortical State to Criticality

    PubMed Central

    Gautam, Shree Hari; Hoang, Thanh T.; McClanahan, Kylie; Grady, Stephen K.; Shew, Woodrow L.

    2015-01-01

    Modulation of interactions among neurons can manifest as dramatic changes in the state of population dynamics in cerebral cortex. How such transitions in cortical state impact the information processing performed by cortical circuits is not clear. Here we performed experiments and computational modeling to determine how somatosensory dynamic range depends on cortical state. We used microelectrode arrays to record ongoing and whisker stimulus-evoked population spiking activity in somatosensory cortex of urethane anesthetized rats. We observed a continuum of different cortical states; at one extreme population activity exhibited small scale variability and was weakly correlated, the other extreme had large scale fluctuations and strong correlations. In experiments, shifts along the continuum often occurred naturally, without direct manipulation. In addition, in both the experiment and the model we directly tuned the cortical state by manipulating inhibitory synaptic interactions. Our principal finding was that somatosensory dynamic range was maximized in a specific cortical state, called criticality, near the tipping point midway between the ends of the continuum. The optimal cortical state was uniquely characterized by scale-free ongoing population dynamics and moderate correlations, in line with theoretical predictions about criticality. However, to reproduce our experimental findings, we found that existing theory required modifications which account for activity-dependent depression. In conclusion, our experiments indicate that in vivo sensory dynamic range is maximized near criticality and our model revealed an unanticipated role for activity-dependent depression in this basic principle of cortical function. PMID:26623645

  3. Maximizing Sensory Dynamic Range by Tuning the Cortical State to Criticality.

    PubMed

    Gautam, Shree Hari; Hoang, Thanh T; McClanahan, Kylie; Grady, Stephen K; Shew, Woodrow L

    2015-12-01

    Modulation of interactions among neurons can manifest as dramatic changes in the state of population dynamics in cerebral cortex. How such transitions in cortical state impact the information processing performed by cortical circuits is not clear. Here we performed experiments and computational modeling to determine how somatosensory dynamic range depends on cortical state. We used microelectrode arrays to record ongoing and whisker stimulus-evoked population spiking activity in somatosensory cortex of urethane anesthetized rats. We observed a continuum of different cortical states; at one extreme population activity exhibited small scale variability and was weakly correlated, the other extreme had large scale fluctuations and strong correlations. In experiments, shifts along the continuum often occurred naturally, without direct manipulation. In addition, in both the experiment and the model we directly tuned the cortical state by manipulating inhibitory synaptic interactions. Our principal finding was that somatosensory dynamic range was maximized in a specific cortical state, called criticality, near the tipping point midway between the ends of the continuum. The optimal cortical state was uniquely characterized by scale-free ongoing population dynamics and moderate correlations, in line with theoretical predictions about criticality. However, to reproduce our experimental findings, we found that existing theory required modifications which account for activity-dependent depression. In conclusion, our experiments indicate that in vivo sensory dynamic range is maximized near criticality and our model revealed an unanticipated role for activity-dependent depression in this basic principle of cortical function. PMID:26623645

  4. Effects of aging and sensory loss on glial cells in mouse visual and auditory cortices

    PubMed Central

    Tremblay, Marie-Ève; Zettel, Martha L.; Ison, James R.; Allen, Paul D.; Majewska, Ania K.

    2011-01-01

    Normal aging is often accompanied by a progressive loss of receptor sensitivity in hearing and vision, whose consequences on cellular function in cortical sensory areas have remained largely unknown. By examining the primary auditory (A1) and visual (V1) cortices in two inbred strains of mice undergoing either age-related loss of audition (C57BL/6J) or vision (CBA/CaJ), we were able to describe cellular and subcellular changes that were associated with normal aging (occurring in A1 and V1 of both strains) or specifically with age-related sensory loss (only in A1 of C57BL/6J or V1 of CBA/CaJ), using immunocytochemical electron microscopy and light microscopy. While the changes were subtle in neurons, glial cells and especially microglia were transformed in aged animals. Microglia became more numerous and irregularly distributed, displayed more variable cell body and process morphologies, occupied smaller territories, and accumulated phagocytic inclusions that often displayed ultrastructural features of synaptic elements. Additionally, evidence of myelination defects were observed, and aged oligodendrocytes became more numerous and were more often encountered in contiguous pairs. Most of these effects were profoundly exacerbated by age-related sensory loss. Together, our results suggest that the age-related alteration of glial cells in sensory cortical areas can be accelerated by activity-driven central mechanisms that result from an age-related loss of peripheral sensitivity. In light of our observations, these age-related changes in sensory function should be considered when investigating cellular, cortical and behavioral functions throughout the lifespan in these commonly used C57BL/6J and CBA/CaJ mouse models. PMID:22223464

  5. Rate and timing of cortical responses driven by separate sensory channels

    PubMed Central

    Saal, Hannes P; Harvey, Michael A; Bensmaia, Sliman J

    2015-01-01

    The sense of touch comprises multiple sensory channels that each conveys characteristic signals during interactions with objects. These neural signals must then be integrated in such a way that behaviorally relevant information about the objects is preserved. To understand the process of integration, we implement a simple computational model that describes how the responses of neurons in somatosensory cortex—recorded from awake, behaving monkeys—are shaped by the peripheral input, reconstructed using simulations of neuronal populations that reproduce natural spiking responses in the nerve with millisecond precision. First, we find that the strength of cortical responses is driven by one population of nerve fibers (rapidly adapting) whereas the timing of cortical responses is shaped by the other (Pacinian). Second, we show that input from these sensory channels is integrated in an optimal fashion that exploits the disparate response behaviors of different fiber types. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.10450.001 PMID:26650354

  6. Large-scale imaging of cortical dynamics during sensory perception and behavior.

    PubMed

    Wekselblatt, Joseph B; Flister, Erik D; Piscopo, Denise M; Niell, Cristopher M

    2016-06-01

    Sensory-driven behaviors engage a cascade of cortical regions to process sensory input and generate motor output. To investigate the temporal dynamics of neural activity at this global scale, we have improved and integrated tools to perform functional imaging across large areas of cortex using a transgenic mouse expressing the genetically encoded calcium sensor GCaMP6s, together with a head-fixed visual discrimination behavior. This technique allows imaging of activity across the dorsal surface of cortex, with spatial resolution adequate to detect differential activity in local regions at least as small as 100 μm. Imaging during an orientation discrimination task reveals a progression of activity in different cortical regions associated with different phases of the task. After cortex-wide patterns of activity are determined, we demonstrate the ability to select a region that displayed conspicuous responses for two-photon microscopy and find that activity in populations of individual neurons in that region correlates with locomotion in trained mice. We expect that this paradigm will be a useful probe of information flow and network processing in brain-wide circuits involved in many sensory and cognitive processes. PMID:26912600

  7. Spatiotemporal dynamics of early cortical gesture processing.

    PubMed

    Möhring, Nicole; Shen, Christina; Neuhaus, Andres H

    2014-10-01

    Gesture processing has been consistently shown to be associated with activation of the inferior parietal lobe (IPL); however, little is known about the integration of IPL activation into the temporal dynamics of early sensory areas. Using a temporally graded repetition suppression paradigm, we examined the activation and time course of brain areas involved in hand gesture processing. We recorded event-related potentials in response to stimulus pairs of static hand images forming gestures of the popular rock-paper-scissors game and estimated their neuronal generators. We identified two main components associated with adaptive patterns related to stimulus repetition. The N190 component elicited at temporo-parietal sites adapted to repetitions of the same gesture and was associated with right-hemispheric extrastriate body area activation. A later component at parieto-occipital sites demonstrated temporally graded adaptation effects for all gestures with a left-hemispheric dominance. Source localization revealed concurrent activations of the right extrastriate body area, fusiform gyri bilaterally, and the left IPL at about 250 ms. The adaptation pattern derived from the graded repetition suppression paradigm demonstrates the functional sensitivity of these sources to gesture processing. Given the literature on IPL contribution to imitation, action recognition, and action execution, IPL activation at about 250 ms may represent the access into specific cognitive routes for gesture processing and may thus be involved in integrating sensory information from cortical body areas into subsequent visuo-motor transformation processes. PMID:24875144

  8. Measurement in Sensory Modulation: The Sensory Processing Scale Assessment

    PubMed Central

    Miller, Lucy J.; Sullivan, Jillian C.

    2014-01-01

    OBJECTIVE. Sensory modulation issues have a significant impact on participation in daily life. Moreover, understanding phenotypic variation in sensory modulation dysfunction is crucial for research related to defining homogeneous groups and for clinical work in guiding treatment planning. We thus evaluated the new Sensory Processing Scale (SPS) Assessment. METHOD. Research included item development, behavioral scoring system development, test administration, and item analyses to evaluate reliability and validity across sensory domains. RESULTS. Items with adequate reliability (internal reliability >.4) and discriminant validity (p < .01) were retained. Feedback from the expert panel also contributed to decisions about retaining items in the scale. CONCLUSION. The SPS Assessment appears to be a reliable and valid measure of sensory modulation (scale reliability >.90; discrimination between group effect sizes >1.00). This scale has the potential to aid in differential diagnosis of sensory modulation issues. PMID:25184464

  9. Distinct Computational Principles Govern Multisensory Integration in Primary Sensory and Association Cortices.

    PubMed

    Rohe, Tim; Noppeney, Uta

    2016-02-22

    Human observers typically integrate sensory signals in a statistically optimal fashion into a coherent percept by weighting them in proportion to their reliabilities [1-4]. An emerging debate in neuroscience is to which extent multisensory integration emerges already in primary sensory areas or is deferred to higher-order association areas [5-9]. This fMRI study used multivariate pattern decoding to characterize the computational principles that define how auditory and visual signals are integrated into spatial representations across the cortical hierarchy. Our results reveal small multisensory influences that were limited to a spatial window of integration in primary sensory areas. By contrast, parietal cortices integrated signals weighted by their sensory reliabilities and task relevance in line with behavioral performance and principles of statistical optimality. Intriguingly, audiovisual integration in parietal cortices was attenuated for large spatial disparities when signals were unlikely to originate from a common source. Our results demonstrate that multisensory interactions in primary and association cortices are governed by distinct computational principles. In primary visual cortices, spatial disparity controlled the influence of non-visual signals on the formation of spatial representations, whereas in parietal cortices, it determined the influence of task-irrelevant signals. Critically, only parietal cortices integrated signals weighted by their bottom-up reliabilities and top-down task relevance into multisensory spatial priority maps to guide spatial orienting. PMID:26853368

  10. Unimodal primary sensory cortices are directly connected by long-range horizontal projections in the rat sensory cortex

    PubMed Central

    Stehberg, Jimmy; Dang, Phat T.; Frostig, Ron D.

    2014-01-01

    Research based on functional imaging and neuronal recordings in the barrel cortex subdivision of primary somatosensory cortex (SI) of the adult rat has revealed novel aspects of structure-function relationships in this cortex. Specifically, it has demonstrated that single whisker stimulation evokes subthreshold neuronal activity that spreads symmetrically within gray matter from the appropriate barrel area, crosses cytoarchitectural borders of SI and reaches deeply into other unimodal primary cortices such as primary auditory (AI) and primary visual (VI). It was further demonstrated that this spread is supported by a spatially matching underlying diffuse network of border-crossing, long-range projections that could also reach deeply into AI and VI. Here we seek to determine whether such a network of border-crossing, long-range projections is unique to barrel cortex or characterizes also other primary, unimodal sensory cortices and therefore could directly connect them. Using anterograde (BDA) and retrograde (CTb) tract-tracing techniques, we demonstrate that such diffuse horizontal networks directly and mutually connect VI, AI and SI. These findings suggest that diffuse, border-crossing axonal projections connecting directly primary cortices are an important organizational motif common to all major primary sensory cortices in the rat. Potential implications of these findings for topics including cortical structure-function relationships, multisensory integration, functional imaging, and cortical parcellation are discussed. PMID:25309339

  11. Cortical Plasticity, Excitatory–Inhibitory Balance, and Sensory Perception

    PubMed Central

    Carcea, Ioana; Froemke, Robert C.

    2015-01-01

    Experience shapes the central nervous system throughout life. Structural and functional plasticity confers a remarkable ability on the brain, allowing neural circuits to adequately adapt to dynamic environments. This process can require selective adjustment of many excitatory and inhibitory synapses in an organized manner, in such a way as to enhance representations of behaviorally important sensory stimuli while preserving overall network excitability. The rules and mechanisms that orchestrated these changes across different synapses and throughout neuronal ensembles are beginning to be understood. Here, we review the evidence connecting synaptic plasticity to functional plasticity and perceptual learning, focusing on the roles of various neuromodulatory systems in enabling plasticity of adult neural circuits. However, the challenge remains to appropriately leverage these systems and forms of plasticity to persistently improve perceptual abilities and behavioral performance. PMID:24309251

  12. Primary motor and sensory cortical areas communicate via spatiotemporally coordinated networks at multiple frequencies.

    PubMed

    Arce-McShane, Fritzie I; Ross, Callum F; Takahashi, Kazutaka; Sessle, Barry J; Hatsopoulos, Nicholas G

    2016-05-01

    Skilled movements rely on sensory information to shape optimal motor responses, for which the sensory and motor cortical areas are critical. How these areas interact to mediate sensorimotor integration is largely unknown. Here, we measure intercortical coherence between the orofacial motor (MIo) and somatosensory (SIo) areas of cortex as monkeys learn to generate tongue-protrusive force. We report that coherence between MIo and SIo is reciprocal and that neuroplastic changes in coherence gradually emerge over a few days. These functional networks of coherent spiking and local field potentials exhibit frequency-specific spatiotemporal properties. During force generation, theta coherence (2-6 Hz) is prominent and exhibited by numerous paired signals; before or after force generation, coherence is evident in alpha (6-13 Hz), beta (15-30 Hz), and gamma (30-50 Hz) bands, but the functional networks are smaller and weaker. Unlike coherence in the higher frequency bands, the distribution of the phase at peak theta coherence is bimodal with peaks near 0° and ±180°, suggesting that communication between somatosensory and motor areas is coordinated temporally by the phase of theta coherence. Time-sensitive sensorimotor integration and plasticity may rely on coherence of local and large-scale functional networks for cortical processes to operate at multiple temporal and spatial scales. PMID:27091982

  13. Intersensory selective attention and temporal orienting operate in parallel and are instantiated in spatially distinct sensory and motor cortices.

    PubMed

    Pomper, Ulrich; Keil, Julian; Foxe, John J; Senkowski, Daniel

    2015-08-01

    Knowledge about the sensory modality in which a forthcoming event might occur permits anticipatory intersensory attention. Information as to when exactly an event occurs enables temporal orienting. Intersensory and temporal attention mechanisms are often deployed simultaneously, but as yet it is unknown whether these processes operate interactively or in parallel. In this human electroencephalography study, we manipulated intersensory attention and temporal orienting in the same paradigm. A continuous stream of bisensory visuo-tactile inputs was presented, and a preceding auditory cue indicated to which modality participants should attend (visual or tactile). Temporal orienting was manipulated blockwise by presenting stimuli either at regular or irregular intervals. Using linear beamforming, we examined neural oscillations at virtual channels in sensory and motor cortices. Both attentional processes simultaneously modulated the power of anticipatory delta- and beta-band oscillations, as well as delta-band phase coherence. Modulations in sensory cortices reflected intersensory attention, indicative of modality-specific gating mechanisms. Modulations in motor and partly in somatosensory cortex reflected temporal orienting, indicative of a supramodal preparatory mechanism. We found no evidence for interactions between intersensory attention and temporal orienting, suggesting that these two mechanisms act in parallel and largely independent of each other in sensory and motor cortices. PMID:26032901

  14. Cortically-Controlled Population Stochastic Facilitation as a Plausible Substrate for Guiding Sensory Transfer across the Thalamic Gateway

    PubMed Central

    Béhuret, Sébastien; Deleuze, Charlotte; Gomez, Leonel; Frégnac, Yves; Bal, Thierry

    2013-01-01

    The thalamus is the primary gateway that relays sensory information to the cerebral cortex. While a single recipient cortical cell receives the convergence of many principal relay cells of the thalamus, each thalamic cell in turn integrates a dense and distributed synaptic feedback from the cortex. During sensory processing, the influence of this functional loop remains largely ignored. Using dynamic-clamp techniques in thalamic slices in vitro, we combined theoretical and experimental approaches to implement a realistic hybrid retino-thalamo-cortical pathway mixing biological cells and simulated circuits. The synaptic bombardment of cortical origin was mimicked through the injection of a stochastic mixture of excitatory and inhibitory conductances, resulting in a gradable correlation level of afferent activity shared by thalamic cells. The study of the impact of the simulated cortical input on the global retinocortical signal transfer efficiency revealed a novel control mechanism resulting from the collective resonance of all thalamic relay neurons. We show here that the transfer efficiency of sensory input transmission depends on three key features: i) the number of thalamocortical cells involved in the many-to-one convergence from thalamus to cortex, ii) the statistics of the corticothalamic synaptic bombardment and iii) the level of correlation imposed between converging thalamic relay cells. In particular, our results demonstrate counterintuitively that the retinocortical signal transfer efficiency increases when the level of correlation across thalamic cells decreases. This suggests that the transfer efficiency of relay cells could be selectively amplified when they become simultaneously desynchronized by the cortical feedback. When applied to the intact brain, this network regulation mechanism could direct an attentional focus to specific thalamic subassemblies and select the appropriate input lines to the cortex according to the descending influence of

  15. Do Gravity-Related Sensory Information Enable the Enhancement of Cortical Proprioceptive Inputs When Planning a Step in Microgravity?

    PubMed Central

    Saradjian, Anahid H.; Paleressompoulle, Dany; Louber, Didier; Coyle, Thelma; Blouin, Jean; Mouchnino, Laurence

    2014-01-01

    We recently found that the cortical response to proprioceptive stimulation was greater when participants were planning a step than when they stood still, and that this sensory facilitation was suppressed in microgravity. The aim of the present study was to test whether the absence of gravity-related sensory afferents during movement planning in microgravity prevented the proprioceptive cortical processing to be enhanced. We reestablished a reference frame in microgravity by providing and translating a horizontal support on which the participants were standing and verified whether this procedure restored the proprioceptive facilitation. The slight translation of the base of support (lateral direction), which occurred prior to step initiation, stimulated at least cutaneous and vestibular receptors. The sensitivity to proprioceptive stimulation was assessed by measuring the amplitude of the cortical somatosensory-evoked potential (SEP, over the Cz electrode) following the vibration of the leg muscle. The vibration lasted 1 s and the participants were asked to either initiate a step at the vibration offset or to remain still. We found that the early SEP (90–160 ms) was smaller when the platform was translated than when it remained stationary, revealing the existence of an interference phenomenon (i.e., when proprioceptive stimulation is preceded by the stimulation of different sensory modalities evoked by the platform translation). By contrast, the late SEP (550 ms post proprioceptive stimulation onset) was greater when the translation preceded the vibration compared to a condition without pre-stimulation (i.e., no translation). This suggests that restoring a body reference system which is impaired in microgravity allowed a greater proprioceptive cortical processing. Importantly, however, the late SEP was similarly increased when participants either produced a step or remained still. We propose that the absence of step-induced facilitation of proprioceptive cortical

  16. Modulation of Specific Sensory Cortical Areas by Segregated Basal Forebrain Cholinergic Neurons Demonstrated by Neuronal Tracing and Optogenetic Stimulation in Mice.

    PubMed

    Chaves-Coira, Irene; Barros-Zulaica, Natali; Rodrigo-Angulo, Margarita; Núñez, Ángel

    2016-01-01

    Neocortical cholinergic activity plays a fundamental role in sensory processing and cognitive functions. Previous results have suggested a refined anatomical and functional topographical organization of basal forebrain (BF) projections that may control cortical sensory processing in a specific manner. We have used retrograde anatomical procedures to demonstrate the existence of specific neuronal groups in the BF involved in the control of specific sensory cortices. Fluoro-Gold (FlGo) and Fast Blue (FB) fluorescent retrograde tracers were deposited into the primary somatosensory (S1) and primary auditory (A1) cortices in mice. Our results revealed that the BF is a heterogeneous area in which neurons projecting to different cortical areas are segregated into different neuronal groups. Most of the neurons located in the horizontal limb of the diagonal band of Broca (HDB) projected to the S1 cortex, indicating that this area is specialized in the sensory processing of tactile stimuli. However, the nucleus basalis magnocellularis (B) nucleus shows a similar number of cells projecting to the S1 as to the A1 cortices. In addition, we analyzed the cholinergic effects on the S1 and A1 cortical sensory responses by optogenetic stimulation of the BF neurons in urethane-anesthetized transgenic mice. We used transgenic mice expressing the light-activated cation channel, channelrhodopsin-2, tagged with a fluorescent protein (ChR2-YFP) under the control of the choline-acetyl transferase promoter (ChAT). Cortical evoked potentials were induced by whisker deflections or by auditory clicks. According to the anatomical results, optogenetic HDB stimulation induced more extensive facilitation of tactile evoked potentials in S1 than auditory evoked potentials in A1, while optogenetic stimulation of the B nucleus facilitated either tactile or auditory evoked potentials equally. Consequently, our results suggest that cholinergic projections to the cortex are organized into segregated

  17. Modulation of Specific Sensory Cortical Areas by Segregated Basal Forebrain Cholinergic Neurons Demonstrated by Neuronal Tracing and Optogenetic Stimulation in Mice

    PubMed Central

    Chaves-Coira, Irene; Barros-Zulaica, Natali; Rodrigo-Angulo, Margarita; Núñez, Ángel

    2016-01-01

    Neocortical cholinergic activity plays a fundamental role in sensory processing and cognitive functions. Previous results have suggested a refined anatomical and functional topographical organization of basal forebrain (BF) projections that may control cortical sensory processing in a specific manner. We have used retrograde anatomical procedures to demonstrate the existence of specific neuronal groups in the BF involved in the control of specific sensory cortices. Fluoro-Gold (FlGo) and Fast Blue (FB) fluorescent retrograde tracers were deposited into the primary somatosensory (S1) and primary auditory (A1) cortices in mice. Our results revealed that the BF is a heterogeneous area in which neurons projecting to different cortical areas are segregated into different neuronal groups. Most of the neurons located in the horizontal limb of the diagonal band of Broca (HDB) projected to the S1 cortex, indicating that this area is specialized in the sensory processing of tactile stimuli. However, the nucleus basalis magnocellularis (B) nucleus shows a similar number of cells projecting to the S1 as to the A1 cortices. In addition, we analyzed the cholinergic effects on the S1 and A1 cortical sensory responses by optogenetic stimulation of the BF neurons in urethane-anesthetized transgenic mice. We used transgenic mice expressing the light-activated cation channel, channelrhodopsin-2, tagged with a fluorescent protein (ChR2-YFP) under the control of the choline-acetyl transferase promoter (ChAT). Cortical evoked potentials were induced by whisker deflections or by auditory clicks. According to the anatomical results, optogenetic HDB stimulation induced more extensive facilitation of tactile evoked potentials in S1 than auditory evoked potentials in A1, while optogenetic stimulation of the B nucleus facilitated either tactile or auditory evoked potentials equally. Consequently, our results suggest that cholinergic projections to the cortex are organized into segregated

  18. Cortical network architecture for context processing in primate brain

    PubMed Central

    Chao, Zenas C; Nagasaka, Yasuo; Fujii, Naotaka

    2015-01-01

    Context is information linked to a situation that can guide behavior. In the brain, context is encoded by sensory processing and can later be retrieved from memory. How context is communicated within the cortical network in sensory and mnemonic forms is unknown due to the lack of methods for high-resolution, brain-wide neuronal recording and analysis. Here, we report the comprehensive architecture of a cortical network for context processing. Using hemisphere-wide, high-density electrocorticography, we measured large-scale neuronal activity from monkeys observing videos of agents interacting in situations with different contexts. We extracted five context-related network structures including a bottom-up network during encoding and, seconds later, cue-dependent retrieval of the same network with the opposite top-down connectivity. These findings show that context is represented in the cortical network as distributed communication structures with dynamic information flows. This study provides a general methodology for recording and analyzing cortical network neuronal communication during cognition. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.06121.001 PMID:26416139

  19. Cortical Variability in the Sensory-Evoked Response in Autism

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Haigh, Sarah M.; Heeger, David J.; Dinstein, Ilan; Minshew, Nancy; Behrmann, Marlene

    2015-01-01

    Previous findings have shown that individuals with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) evince greater intra-individual variability (IIV) in their sensory-evoked fMRI responses compared to typical control participants. We explore the robustness of this finding with a new sample of high-functioning adults with autism. Participants were presented with…

  20. Between molecules and experience: role of early patterns of coordinated activity for the development of cortical maps and sensory abilities.

    PubMed

    Hanganu-Opatz, Ileana L

    2010-09-01

    Sensory systems processing information from the environment rely on precisely formed and refined neuronal networks that build maps of sensory receptor epithelia at different subcortical and cortical levels. These sensory maps share similar principles of function and emerge according to developmental processes common in visual, somatosensory and auditory systems. Whereas molecular cues set the coarse organization of cortico-subcortical topography, its refinement is known to succeed under the influence of experience-dependent electrical activity during critical periods. However, coordinated patterns of activity synchronize the cortico-subcortical networks long before the meaningful impact of environmental inputs on sensory maps. Recent studies elucidated the cellular and network mechanisms underlying the generation of these early patterns of activity and highlighted their similarities across species. Moreover, the experience-independent activity appears to act as a functional template for the maturation of sensory networks and cortico-subcortical maps. A major goal for future research will be to analyze how this early activity interacts with the molecular cues and to determine whether it is permissive or rather supporting for the establishment of sensory topography. PMID:20381527

  1. Progression to deep sleep is characterized by changes to BOLD dynamics in sensory cortices

    PubMed Central

    Davis, Ben; Tagliazucchi, Enzo; Jovicich, Jorge; Laufs, Helmut; Hasson, Uri

    2016-01-01

    Sleep has been shown to subtly disrupt the spatial organization of functional connectivity networks in the brain, but in a way that largely preserves the connectivity within sensory cortices. Here we evaluated the hypothesis that sleep does impact sensory cortices, but through alteration of activity dynamics. We therefore examined the impact of sleep on hemodynamics using a method for quantifying non-random, high frequency signatures of the blood-oxygen-level dependent (BOLD) signal (amplitude variance asymmetry; AVA). We found that sleep was associated with the elimination of these dynamics in a manner that is restricted to auditory, motor and visual cortices. This elimination was concurrent with increased variance of activity in these regions. Functional connectivity between regions showing AVA during wakefulness maintained a relatively consistent hierarchical structure during wakefulness and N1 and N2 sleep, despite a gradual reduction of connectivity strength as sleep progressed. Thus, sleep is related to elimination of high frequency non-random activity signatures in sensory cortices that are robust during wakefulness. The elimination of these AVA signatures conjointly with preservation of the structure of functional connectivity patterns may be linked to the need to suppress sensory inputs during sleep while still maintaining the capacity to react quickly to complex multimodal inputs. PMID:26724779

  2. Progression to deep sleep is characterized by changes to BOLD dynamics in sensory cortices.

    PubMed

    Davis, Ben; Tagliazucchi, Enzo; Jovicich, Jorge; Laufs, Helmut; Hasson, Uri

    2016-04-15

    Sleep has been shown to subtly disrupt the spatial organization of functional connectivity networks in the brain, but in a way that largely preserves the connectivity within sensory cortices. Here we evaluated the hypothesis that sleep does impact sensory cortices, but through alteration of activity dynamics. We therefore examined the impact of sleep on hemodynamics using a method for quantifying non-random, high frequency signatures of the blood-oxygen-level dependent (BOLD) signal (amplitude variance asymmetry; AVA). We found that sleep was associated with the elimination of these dynamics in a manner that is restricted to auditory, motor and visual cortices. This elimination was concurrent with increased variance of activity in these regions. Functional connectivity between regions showing AVA during wakefulness maintained a relatively consistent hierarchical structure during wakefulness and N1 and N2 sleep, despite a gradual reduction of connectivity strength as sleep progressed. Thus, sleep is related to elimination of high frequency non-random activity signatures in sensory cortices that are robust during wakefulness. The elimination of these AVA signatures conjointly with preservation of the structure of functional connectivity patterns may be linked to the need to suppress sensory inputs during sleep while still maintaining the capacity to react quickly to complex multimodal inputs. PMID:26724779

  3. In vitro and in vivo measures of evoked excitatory and inhibitory conductance dynamics in sensory cortices.

    PubMed

    Monier, C; Fournier, J; Frégnac, Y

    2008-04-30

    In order to better understand the synaptic nature of the integration process operated by cortical neurons during sensory processing, it is necessary to devise quantitative methods which allow one to infer the level of conductance change evoked by the sensory stimulation and, consequently, the dynamics of the balance between excitation and inhibition. Such detailed measurements are required to characterize the static versus dynamic nature of the non-linear interactions triggered at the single cell level by sensory stimulus. This paper primarily reviews experimental data from our laboratory based on direct conductance measurements during whole-cell patch clamp recordings in two experimental preparations: (1) in vitro, during electrical stimulation in the visual cortex of the rat and (2) in vivo, during visual stimulation, in the primary visual cortex of the anaesthetized cat. Both studies demonstrate that shunting inhibition is expressed as well in vivo as in vitro. Our in vivo data reveals that a high level of diversity is observed in the degree of interaction (from linear to non-linear) and in the temporal interplay (from push-pull to synchronous) between stimulus-driven excitation (E) and inhibition (I). A detailed analysis of the E/I balance during evoked spike activity further shows that the firing strength results from a simultaneous decrease of evoked inhibition and increase of excitation. Secondary, the paper overviews the various computational methods used in the literature to assess conductance dynamics, measured in current clamp as well as in voltage clamp in different neocortical areas and species, and discuss the consistency of their estimations. PMID:18215425

  4. Optic-flow selective cortical sensory regions associated with self-reported states of vection

    PubMed Central

    Uesaki, Maiko; Ashida, Hiroshi

    2015-01-01

    Optic flow is one of the most important visual cues to the estimation of self-motion. It has repeatedly been demonstrated that a cortical network including visual, multisensory, and vestibular areas is implicated in processing optic flow; namely, visual areas middle temporal cortex (MT+), V6; multisensory areas ventral intra-parietal area (VIP), cingulate sulcus visual area, precuneus motion area (PcM); and vestibular areas parieto-insular vestibular cortex (PIVC) and putative area 2v (p2v). However, few studies have investigated the roles of and interaction between the optic-flow selective sensory areas within the context of self-motion perception. When visual information (i.e., optic flow) is the sole cue to computing self-motion parameters, the discrepancy amongst the sensory signals may induce an illusion of self-motion referred to as ‘vection.’ This study aimed to identify optic-flow selective sensory areas that are involved in the processing of visual cues to self-motion, by introducing vection as an index and assessing activation in which of those areas reflect vection, using functional magnetic resonance imaging. The results showed that activity in visual areas MT+ and V6, multisensory area VIP and vestibular area PIVC was significantly greater while participants were experiencing vection, as compared to when they were experiencing no vection, which may indicate that activation in MT+, V6, VIP, and PIVC reflects vection. The results also place VIP in a good position to integrate visual cues related to self-motion and vestibular information. PMID:26106350

  5. Gating of sensory input at spinal and cortical levels during preparation and execution of voluntary movement

    PubMed Central

    Seki, Kazuhiko; Fetz, Eberhard E.

    2012-01-01

    All bodily movements stimulate peripheral receptors that activate neurons in the brain and spinal cord through afferent feedback. How these reafferent signals are processed within the central nervous system during movement is a key question in motor control. We investigated cutaneous sensory evoked potentials (SEPs) in the spinal cord, primary somatosensory and motor cortex and premotor cortex in monkeys performing an instructed delay task. Afferent inputs from cutaneous receptors were suppressed at several levels in a task-dependent manner. We found two types of suppression. First, suppression during active limb movement is observed in the spinal cord and all three cortical areas. This suppression is induced by both bottom-up and top-down gating mechanisms. Second, during preparation for upcoming movement evoked responses were suppressed exclusively in the motor cortical areas, and the magnitude of suppression was correlated with the reaction time of the subsequent movement. This suppression could be induced by a top-down gating mechanism to facilitate the preparation and execution of upcoming movement. PMID:22262887

  6. Functional results of electrical cortical stimulation of the lower sensory strip.

    PubMed

    Tanriverdi, Taner; Al-Jehani, Hosam; Poulin, Nicole; Olivier, Andre

    2009-09-01

    The aim of this paper is to provide functional results obtained from electrical cortical stimulation of the lower postcentral gyrus in patients who underwent either lesional or non-lesional epilepsy surgery. Group I (n=393) included those patients with gliosis or normal tissue and Group II (n=107) included patients with space-occupying lesions. For cortical stimulation, a unipolar voltage-controlled electrode was used. The tongue, lip, and hand/finger sequences over the lower postcentral gyrus lateromedially in both groups were in agreement with classic teaching. The presence of structural lesions, such as tumors and dysplasia, did not affect the vertical representation of the body parts on the lower sensory strip. Individual variations, which included mosaicism over the sensory strip, were frequent. Whether the functional variability and mosaicism within the sensory cortex result from a pathological condition or not remains to be elucidated in healthy humans using advanced non-invasive brain mapping techniques. PMID:19497753

  7. Top-down modulation of visual and auditory cortical processing in aging.

    PubMed

    Guerreiro, Maria J S; Eck, Judith; Moerel, Michelle; Evers, Elisabeth A T; Van Gerven, Pascal W M

    2015-02-01

    Age-related cognitive decline has been accounted for by an age-related deficit in top-down attentional modulation of sensory cortical processing. In light of recent behavioral findings showing that age-related differences in selective attention are modality dependent, our goal was to investigate the role of sensory modality in age-related differences in top-down modulation of sensory cortical processing. This question was addressed by testing younger and older individuals in several memory tasks while undergoing fMRI. Throughout these tasks, perceptual features were kept constant while attentional instructions were varied, allowing us to devise all combinations of relevant and irrelevant, visual and auditory information. We found no top-down modulation of auditory sensory cortical processing in either age group. In contrast, we found top-down modulation of visual cortical processing in both age groups, and this effect did not differ between age groups. That is, older adults enhanced cortical processing of relevant visual information and suppressed cortical processing of visual distractors during auditory attention to the same extent as younger adults. The present results indicate that older adults are capable of suppressing irrelevant visual information in the context of cross-modal auditory attention, and thereby challenge the view that age-related attentional and cognitive decline is due to a general deficits in the ability to suppress irrelevant information. PMID:25300470

  8. Sensory experience regulates cortical inhibition by inducing IGF1 in VIP neurons.

    PubMed

    Mardinly, A R; Spiegel, I; Patrizi, A; Centofante, E; Bazinet, J E; Tzeng, C P; Mandel-Brehm, C; Harmin, D A; Adesnik, H; Fagiolini, M; Greenberg, M E

    2016-03-17

    Inhibitory neurons regulate the adaptation of neural circuits to sensory experience, but the molecular mechanisms by which experience controls the connectivity between different types of inhibitory neuron to regulate cortical plasticity are largely unknown. Here we show that exposure of dark-housed mice to light induces a gene program in cortical vasoactive intestinal peptide (VIP)-expressing neurons that is markedly distinct from that induced in excitatory neurons and other subtypes of inhibitory neuron. We identify Igf1 as one of several activity-regulated genes that are specific to VIP neurons, and demonstrate that IGF1 functions cell-autonomously in VIP neurons to increase inhibitory synaptic input onto these neurons. Our findings further suggest that in cortical VIP neurons, experience-dependent gene transcription regulates visual acuity by activating the expression of IGF1, thus promoting the inhibition of disinhibitory neurons and affecting inhibition onto cortical pyramidal neurons. PMID:26958833

  9. Control of Somatosensory Cortical Processing by Thalamic Posterior Medial Nucleus: A New Role of Thalamus in Cortical Function

    PubMed Central

    Castejon, Carlos; Barros-Zulaica, Natali; Nuñez, Angel

    2016-01-01

    Current knowledge of thalamocortical interaction comes mainly from studying lemniscal thalamic systems. Less is known about paralemniscal thalamic nuclei function. In the vibrissae system, the posterior medial nucleus (POm) is the corresponding paralemniscal nucleus. POm neurons project to L1 and L5A of the primary somatosensory cortex (S1) in the rat brain. It is known that L1 modifies sensory-evoked responses through control of intracortical excitability suggesting that L1 exerts an influence on whisker responses. Therefore, thalamocortical pathways targeting L1 could modulate cortical firing. Here, using a combination of electrophysiology and pharmacology in vivo, we have sought to determine how POm influences cortical processing. In our experiments, single unit recordings performed in urethane-anesthetized rats showed that POm imposes precise control on the magnitude and duration of supra- and infragranular barrel cortex whisker responses. Our findings demonstrated that L1 inputs from POm imposed a time and intensity dependent regulation on cortical sensory processing. Moreover, we found that blocking L1 GABAergic inhibition or blocking P/Q-type Ca2+ channels in L1 prevents POm adjustment of whisker responses in the barrel cortex. Additionally, we found that POm was also controlling the sensory processing in S2 and this regulation was modulated by corticofugal activity from L5 in S1. Taken together, our data demonstrate the determinant role exerted by the POm in the adjustment of somatosensory cortical processing and in the regulation of cortical processing between S1 and S2. We propose that this adjustment could be a thalamocortical gain regulation mechanism also present in the processing of information between cortical areas. PMID:26820514

  10. Control of Somatosensory Cortical Processing by Thalamic Posterior Medial Nucleus: A New Role of Thalamus in Cortical Function.

    PubMed

    Castejon, Carlos; Barros-Zulaica, Natali; Nuñez, Angel

    2016-01-01

    Current knowledge of thalamocortical interaction comes mainly from studying lemniscal thalamic systems. Less is known about paralemniscal thalamic nuclei function. In the vibrissae system, the posterior medial nucleus (POm) is the corresponding paralemniscal nucleus. POm neurons project to L1 and L5A of the primary somatosensory cortex (S1) in the rat brain. It is known that L1 modifies sensory-evoked responses through control of intracortical excitability suggesting that L1 exerts an influence on whisker responses. Therefore, thalamocortical pathways targeting L1 could modulate cortical firing. Here, using a combination of electrophysiology and pharmacology in vivo, we have sought to determine how POm influences cortical processing. In our experiments, single unit recordings performed in urethane-anesthetized rats showed that POm imposes precise control on the magnitude and duration of supra- and infragranular barrel cortex whisker responses. Our findings demonstrated that L1 inputs from POm imposed a time and intensity dependent regulation on cortical sensory processing. Moreover, we found that blocking L1 GABAergic inhibition or blocking P/Q-type Ca2+ channels in L1 prevents POm adjustment of whisker responses in the barrel cortex. Additionally, we found that POm was also controlling the sensory processing in S2 and this regulation was modulated by corticofugal activity from L5 in S1. Taken together, our data demonstrate the determinant role exerted by the POm in the adjustment of somatosensory cortical processing and in the regulation of cortical processing between S1 and S2. We propose that this adjustment could be a thalamocortical gain regulation mechanism also present in the processing of information between cortical areas. PMID:26820514

  11. Sensory stimuli reduce the dimensionality of cortical activity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mazzucato, Luca; Fontanini, Alfredo; La Camera, Giancarlo

    Neural ensembles in alert animals generate complex patterns of activity. Although cortical activity unfolds in a space whose dimension is equal to the number of neurons, it is often restricted to a lower dimensional subspace. Dimensionality is the minimal number of dimensions that accurately capture neural dynamics, and may be related to the computational tasks supported by the neural circuit. Here, we investigate the dimensionality of neural ensembles from the insular cortex of alert rats during periods of `ongoing' (spontaneous) and stimulus-evoked activity. We find that the dimensionality grows with ensemble size, and does so significantly faster during ongoing compared to evoked activity. We explain both results using a recurrent spiking network with clustered architecture, and obtain analytical results on the dependence of dimensionality on ensemble size, number of clusters, and pair-wise noise correlations. The theory predicts a characteristic scaling with ensemble size and the existence of an upper bound on dimensionality, which grows with the number of clusters and decreases with the amount of noise correlations. To our knowledge, this is the first mechanistic model of neural dimensionality in cortex during both spontaneous and evoked activity.

  12. Input-Specific Gain Modulation by Local Sensory Context Shapes Cortical and Thalamic Responses to Complex Sounds.

    PubMed

    Williamson, Ross S; Ahrens, Misha B; Linden, Jennifer F; Sahani, Maneesh

    2016-07-20

    Sensory neurons are customarily characterized by one or more linearly weighted receptive fields describing sensitivity in sensory space and time. We show that in auditory cortical and thalamic neurons, the weight of each receptive field element depends on the pattern of sound falling within a local neighborhood surrounding it in time and frequency. Accounting for this change in effective receptive field with spectrotemporal context improves predictions of both cortical and thalamic responses to stationary complex sounds. Although context dependence varies among neurons and across brain areas, there are strong shared qualitative characteristics. In a spectrotemporally rich soundscape, sound elements modulate neuronal responsiveness more effectively when they coincide with sounds at other frequencies, and less effectively when they are preceded by sounds at similar frequencies. This local-context-driven lability in the representation of complex sounds-a modulation of "input-specific gain" rather than "output gain"-may be a widespread motif in sensory processing. PMID:27346532

  13. Interhemispheric claustral circuits coordinate sensory and motor cortical areas that regulate exploratory behaviors

    PubMed Central

    Smith, Jared B.; Alloway, Kevin D.

    2014-01-01

    The claustrum has a role in the interhemispheric transfer of certain types of sensorimotor information. Whereas the whisker region in rat motor (M1) cortex sends dense projections to the contralateral claustrum, the M1 forelimb representation does not. The claustrum sends strong ipsilateral projections to the whisker regions in M1 and somatosensory (S1) cortex, but its projections to the forelimb cortical areas are weak. These distinctions suggest that one function of the M1 projections to the contralateral claustrum is to coordinate the cortical areas that regulate peripheral sensor movements during behaviors that depend on bilateral sensory acquisition. If this hypothesis is true, then similar interhemispheric circuits should interconnect the frontal eye fields (FEF) with the contralateral claustrum and its network of projections to vision-related cortical areas. To test this hypothesis, anterograde and retrograde tracers were placed in physiologically-defined parts of the FEF and primary visual cortex (V1) in rats. We observed dense FEF projections to the contralateral claustrum that terminated in the midst of claustral neurons that project to both FEF and V1. While the FEF inputs to the claustrum come predominantly from the contralateral hemisphere, the claustral projections to FEF and V1 are primarily ipsilateral. Detailed comparison of the present results with our previous studies on somatomotor claustral circuitry revealed a well-defined functional topography in which the ventral claustrum is connected with visuomotor cortical areas and the dorsal regions are connected with somatomotor areas. These results suggest that subregions within the claustrum play a critical role in coordinating the cortical areas that regulate the acquisition of modality-specific sensory information during exploration and other behaviors that require sensory attention. PMID:24904315

  14. Storing maternal memories: Hypothesizing an interaction of experience and estrogen on sensory cortical plasticity to learn infant cues

    PubMed Central

    Banerjee, Sunayana B.; Liu, Robert C.

    2013-01-01

    Much of the literature on maternal behavior has focused on the role of infant experience and hormones in a canonical subcortical circuit for maternal motivation and maternal memory. Although early studies demonstrated that the cerebral cortex also plays a significant role in maternal behaviors, little has been done to explore what that role may be. Recent work though has provided evidence that the cortex, particularly sensory cortices, contains correlates of sensory memories of infant cues, consistent with classical studies of experience-dependent sensory cortical plasticity in non-maternal paradigms. By reviewing the literature from both the maternal behavior and sensory cortical plasticity fields, focusing on the auditory modality, we hypothesize that maternal hormones (predominantly estrogen) may act to prime auditory cortical neurons for a longer-lasting neural trace of infant vocal cues, thereby facilitating recognition and discrimination. This could then more efficiently activate the subcortical circuit to elicit and sustain maternal behavior. PMID:23916405

  15. Histone Deacetylase Inhibition via RGFP966 Releases the Brakes on Sensory Cortical Plasticity and the Specificity of Memory Formation.

    PubMed

    Bieszczad, Kasia M; Bechay, Kiro; Rusche, James R; Jacques, Vincent; Kudugunti, Shashi; Miao, Wenyan; Weinberger, Norman M; McGaugh, James L; Wood, Marcelo A

    2015-09-23

    Research over the past decade indicates a novel role for epigenetic mechanisms in memory formation. Of particular interest is chromatin modification by histone deacetylases (HDACs), which, in general, negatively regulate transcription. HDAC deletion or inhibition facilitates transcription during memory consolidation and enhances long-lasting forms of synaptic plasticity and long-term memory. A key open question remains: How does blocking HDAC activity lead to memory enhancements? To address this question, we tested whether a normal function of HDACs is to gate information processing during memory formation. We used a class I HDAC inhibitor, RGFP966 (C21H19FN4O), to test the role of HDAC inhibition for information processing in an auditory memory model of learning-induced cortical plasticity. HDAC inhibition may act beyond memory enhancement per se to instead regulate information in ways that lead to encoding more vivid sensory details into memory. Indeed, we found that RGFP966 controls memory induction for acoustic details of sound-to-reward learning. Rats treated with RGFP966 while learning to associate sound with reward had stronger memory and additional information encoded into memory for highly specific features of sounds associated with reward. Moreover, behavioral effects occurred with unusually specific plasticity in primary auditory cortex (A1). Class I HDAC inhibition appears to engage A1 plasticity that enables additional acoustic features to become encoded in memory. Thus, epigenetic mechanisms act to regulate sensory cortical plasticity, which offers an information processing mechanism for gating what and how much is encoded to produce exceptionally persistent and vivid memories. Significance statement: Here we provide evidence of an epigenetic mechanism for information processing. The study reveals that a class I HDAC inhibitor (Malvaez et al., 2013; Rumbaugh et al., 2015; RGFP966, chemical formula C21H19FN4O) alters the formation of auditory memory by

  16. Histone Deacetylase Inhibition via RGFP966 Releases the Brakes on Sensory Cortical Plasticity and the Specificity of Memory Formation

    PubMed Central

    Bechay, Kiro; Rusche, James R.; Jacques, Vincent; Kudugunti, Shashi; Miao, Wenyan; Weinberger, Norman M.; McGaugh, James L.

    2015-01-01

    Research over the past decade indicates a novel role for epigenetic mechanisms in memory formation. Of particular interest is chromatin modification by histone deacetylases (HDACs), which, in general, negatively regulate transcription. HDAC deletion or inhibition facilitates transcription during memory consolidation and enhances long-lasting forms of synaptic plasticity and long-term memory. A key open question remains: How does blocking HDAC activity lead to memory enhancements? To address this question, we tested whether a normal function of HDACs is to gate information processing during memory formation. We used a class I HDAC inhibitor, RGFP966 (C21H19FN4O), to test the role of HDAC inhibition for information processing in an auditory memory model of learning-induced cortical plasticity. HDAC inhibition may act beyond memory enhancement per se to instead regulate information in ways that lead to encoding more vivid sensory details into memory. Indeed, we found that RGFP966 controls memory induction for acoustic details of sound-to-reward learning. Rats treated with RGFP966 while learning to associate sound with reward had stronger memory and additional information encoded into memory for highly specific features of sounds associated with reward. Moreover, behavioral effects occurred with unusually specific plasticity in primary auditory cortex (A1). Class I HDAC inhibition appears to engage A1 plasticity that enables additional acoustic features to become encoded in memory. Thus, epigenetic mechanisms act to regulate sensory cortical plasticity, which offers an information processing mechanism for gating what and how much is encoded to produce exceptionally persistent and vivid memories. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Here we provide evidence of an epigenetic mechanism for information processing. The study reveals that a class I HDAC inhibitor (Malvaez et al., 2013; Rumbaugh et al., 2015; RGFP966, chemical formula C21H19FN4O) alters the formation of auditory memory by

  17. Convergence of Cortical and Sensory Driver Inputs on Single Thalamocortical Cells

    PubMed Central

    Groh, Alexander; Bokor, Hajnalka; Mease, Rebecca A.; Plattner, Viktor M.; Hangya, Balázs; Stroh, Albrecht; Deschenes, Martin; Acsády, László

    2014-01-01

    Ascending and descending information is relayed through the thalamus via strong, “driver” pathways. According to our current knowledge, different driver pathways are organized in parallel streams and do not interact at the thalamic level. Using an electron microscopic approach combined with optogenetics and in vivo physiology, we examined whether driver inputs arising from different sources can interact at single thalamocortical cells in the rodent somatosensory thalamus (nucleus posterior, POm). Both the anatomical and the physiological data demonstrated that ascending driver inputs from the brainstem and descending driver inputs from cortical layer 5 pyramidal neurons converge and interact on single thalamocortical neurons in POm. Both individual pathways displayed driver properties, but they interacted synergistically in a time-dependent manner and when co-activated, supralinearly increased the output of thalamus. As a consequence, thalamocortical neurons reported the relative timing between sensory events and ongoing cortical activity. We conclude that thalamocortical neurons can receive 2 powerful inputs of different origin, rather than only a single one as previously suggested. This allows thalamocortical neurons to integrate raw sensory information with powerful cortical signals and transfer the integrated activity back to cortical networks. PMID:23825316

  18. Variance predicts salience in central sensory processing.

    PubMed

    Hermundstad, Ann M; Briguglio, John J; Conte, Mary M; Victor, Jonathan D; Balasubramanian, Vijay; Tkačik, Gašper

    2014-01-01

    Information processing in the sensory periphery is shaped by natural stimulus statistics. In the periphery, a transmission bottleneck constrains performance; thus efficient coding implies that natural signal components with a predictably wider range should be compressed. In a different regime--when sampling limitations constrain performance--efficient coding implies that more resources should be allocated to informative features that are more variable. We propose that this regime is relevant for sensory cortex when it extracts complex features from limited numbers of sensory samples. To test this prediction, we use central visual processing as a model: we show that visual sensitivity for local multi-point spatial correlations, described by dozens of independently-measured parameters, can be quantitatively predicted from the structure of natural images. This suggests that efficient coding applies centrally, where it extends to higher-order sensory features and operates in a regime in which sensitivity increases with feature variability. PMID:25396297

  19. Genetic mechanisms control the linear scaling between related cortical primary and higher order sensory areas.

    PubMed

    Zembrzycki, Andreas; Stocker, Adam M; Leingärtner, Axel; Sahara, Setsuko; Chou, Shen-Ju; Kalatsky, Valery; May, Scott R; Stryker, Michael P; O'Leary, Dennis Dm

    2015-01-01

    In mammals, the neocortical layout consists of few modality-specific primary sensory areas and a multitude of higher order ones. Abnormal layout of cortical areas may disrupt sensory function and behavior. Developmental genetic mechanisms specify primary areas, but mechanisms influencing higher order area properties are unknown. By exploiting gain-of and loss-of function mouse models of the transcription factor Emx2, we have generated bi-directional changes in primary visual cortex size in vivo and have used it as a model to show a novel and prominent function for genetic mechanisms regulating primary visual area size and also proportionally dictating the sizes of surrounding higher order visual areas. This finding redefines the role for intrinsic genetic mechanisms to concomitantly specify and scale primary and related higher order sensory areas in a linear fashion. PMID:26705332

  20. Multilevel Cortical Processing of Somatosensory Novelty: A Magnetoencephalography Study

    PubMed Central

    Naeije, Gilles; Vaulet, Thibaut; Wens, Vincent; Marty, Brice; Goldman, Serge; De Tiège, Xavier

    2016-01-01

    Using magnetoencephalography (MEG), this study investigates the spatio-temporal dynamics of the multilevel cortical processing of somatosensory change detection. Neuromagnetic signals of 16 healthy adult subjects (7 females and 9 males, mean age 29 ± 3 years) were recorded using whole-scalp-covering MEG while they underwent an oddball paradigm based on simple standard (right index fingertip tactile stimulation) and deviant (simultaneous right index fingertip and middle phalanx tactile stimulation) stimuli gathered into sequences to create and then deviate from stimulus patterns at multiple (local vs. global) levels of complexity. Five healthy adult subjects (3 females and 2 males, mean age 31, 6 ± 2 years) also underwent a similar oddball paradigm in which standard and deviant stimuli were flipped. Local deviations led to a somatosensory mismatch response peaking at 55–130 ms post-stimulus onset with a cortical generator located at the contralateral secondary somatosensory (cSII) cortex. The mismatch response was independent of the deviant stimuli physical characteristics. Global deviants led to a P300 response with cortical sources located bilaterally at temporo-parietal junction (TPJ) and supplementary motor area (SMA). The posterior parietal cortex (PPC) and the SMA were found to generate a contingent magnetic variation (CMV) attributed to top-down expectations. Amplitude of mismatch responses were modulated by top-down expectations and correlated with both the magnitude of the CMV and the P300 amplitude at the right TPJ. These results provide novel empirical evidence for a unified sensory novelty detection system in the human brain by linking detection of salient sensory stimuli in personal and extra-personal spaces to a common framework of multilevel cortical processing. PMID:27313523

  1. Multilevel Cortical Processing of Somatosensory Novelty: A Magnetoencephalography Study.

    PubMed

    Naeije, Gilles; Vaulet, Thibaut; Wens, Vincent; Marty, Brice; Goldman, Serge; De Tiège, Xavier

    2016-01-01

    Using magnetoencephalography (MEG), this study investigates the spatio-temporal dynamics of the multilevel cortical processing of somatosensory change detection. Neuromagnetic signals of 16 healthy adult subjects (7 females and 9 males, mean age 29 ± 3 years) were recorded using whole-scalp-covering MEG while they underwent an oddball paradigm based on simple standard (right index fingertip tactile stimulation) and deviant (simultaneous right index fingertip and middle phalanx tactile stimulation) stimuli gathered into sequences to create and then deviate from stimulus patterns at multiple (local vs. global) levels of complexity. Five healthy adult subjects (3 females and 2 males, mean age 31, 6 ± 2 years) also underwent a similar oddball paradigm in which standard and deviant stimuli were flipped. Local deviations led to a somatosensory mismatch response peaking at 55-130 ms post-stimulus onset with a cortical generator located at the contralateral secondary somatosensory (cSII) cortex. The mismatch response was independent of the deviant stimuli physical characteristics. Global deviants led to a P300 response with cortical sources located bilaterally at temporo-parietal junction (TPJ) and supplementary motor area (SMA). The posterior parietal cortex (PPC) and the SMA were found to generate a contingent magnetic variation (CMV) attributed to top-down expectations. Amplitude of mismatch responses were modulated by top-down expectations and correlated with both the magnitude of the CMV and the P300 amplitude at the right TPJ. These results provide novel empirical evidence for a unified sensory novelty detection system in the human brain by linking detection of salient sensory stimuli in personal and extra-personal spaces to a common framework of multilevel cortical processing. PMID:27313523

  2. Hyperactivation balances sensory processing deficits during mood induction in schizophrenia.

    PubMed

    Dyck, Miriam; Loughead, James; Gur, Ruben C; Schneider, Frank; Mathiak, Klaus

    2014-02-01

    While impairments in emotion recognition are consistently reported in schizophrenia, there is some debate on the experience of emotion. Only few studies investigated neural correlates of emotional experience in schizophrenia. The present functional magnetic resonance imaging study compared a standard visual mood induction paradigm with an audiovisual method aimed at eliciting emotions more automatically. To investigate the interplay of sensory, cognitive and emotional mechanisms during emotion experience, we examined connectivity patterns between brain areas. Sixteen schizophrenia patients and sixteen healthy subjects participated in two different mood inductions (visual and audiovisual) that were administered for different emotions (happiness, sadness and neutral). Confirming the dissociation of behavioral and neural correlates of emotion experience, patients rated their mood similarly to healthy subjects but showed differences in neural activations. Sensory brain areas were activated less, increased activity emerged in higher cortical areas, particularly during audiovisual stimulation. Connectivity was increased between primary and secondary sensory processing areas in schizophrenia. These findings support the hypothesis of a deficit in filtering and processing sensory information alongside increased higher-order cognitive effort compensating for perception deficits in the affective domain. This may suffice to recover emotion experience in ratings of clinically stable patients but may fail during acute psychosis. PMID:23051903

  3. Cortical swallowing processing in early subacute stroke

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background Dysphagia is a major complication in hemispheric as well as brainstem stroke patients causing aspiration pneumonia and increased mortality. Little is known about the recovery from dysphagia after stroke. The aim of the present study was to determine the different patterns of cortical swallowing processing in patients with hemispheric and brainstem stroke with and without dysphagia in the early subacute phase. Methods We measured brain activity by mean of whole-head MEG in 37 patients with different stroke localisation 8.2 +/- 4.8 days after stroke to study changes in cortical activation during self-paced swallowing. An age matched group of healthy subjects served as controls. Data were analyzed by means of synthetic aperture magnetometry and group analyses were performed using a permutation test. Results Our results demonstrate strong bilateral reduction of cortical swallowing activation in dysphagic patients with hemispheric stroke. In hemispheric stroke without dysphagia, bilateral activation was found. In the small group of patients with brainstem stroke we observed a reduction of cortical activation and a right hemispheric lateralization. Conclusion Bulbar central pattern generators coordinate the pharyngeal swallowing phase. The observed right hemispheric lateralization in brainstem stroke can therefore be interpreted as acute cortical compensation of subcortically caused dysphagia. The reduction of activation in brainstem stroke patients and dysphagic patients with cortical stroke could be explained in terms of diaschisis. PMID:21392404

  4. Looking for the roots of cortical sensory computation in three-layered cortices

    PubMed Central

    Fournier, Julien; Müller, Christian M.; Laurent, Gilles

    2016-01-01

    Despite considerable effort over a century and the benefit of remarkable technical advances in the past few decades, we are still far from understanding mammalian cerebral cortex. With its six layers, modular architecture, canonical circuits, innumerable cell types, and computational complexity, isocortex remains a challenging mystery. In this review, we argue that identifying the structural and functional similarities between mammalian piriform cortex and reptilian dorsal cortex could help reveal common organizational and computational principles and by extension, some of the most primordial computations carried out in cortical networks. PMID:25291080

  5. Molecular Correlates of Cortical Network Modulation by Long-Term Sensory Experience in the Adult Rat Barrel Cortex

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Vallès, Astrid; Granic, Ivica; De Weerd, Peter; Martens, Gerard J. M.

    2014-01-01

    Modulation of cortical network connectivity is crucial for an adaptive response to experience. In the rat barrel cortex, long-term sensory stimulation induces cortical network modifications and neuronal response changes of which the molecular basis is unknown. Here, we show that long-term somatosensory stimulation by enriched environment…

  6. Laminar Analysis of Excitatory Local Circuits in Vibrissal Motor and Sensory Cortical Areas

    PubMed Central

    Hooks, B. M.; Hires, S. Andrew; Zhang, Ying-Xin; Huber, Daniel; Petreanu, Leopoldo; Svoboda, Karel; Shepherd, Gordon M. G.

    2011-01-01

    Rodents move their whiskers to locate and identify objects. Cortical areas involved in vibrissal somatosensation and sensorimotor integration include the vibrissal area of the primary motor cortex (vM1), primary somatosensory cortex (vS1; barrel cortex), and secondary somatosensory cortex (S2). We mapped local excitatory pathways in each area across all cortical layers using glutamate uncaging and laser scanning photostimulation. We analyzed these maps to derive laminar connectivity matrices describing the average strengths of pathways between individual neurons in different layers and between entire cortical layers. In vM1, the strongest projection was L2/3→L5. In vS1, strong projections were L2/3→L5 and L4→L3. L6 input and output were weak in both areas. In S2, L2/3→L5 exceeded the strength of the ascending L4→L3 projection, and local input to L6 was prominent. The most conserved pathways were L2/3→L5, and the most variable were L4→L2/3 and pathways involving L6. Local excitatory circuits in different cortical areas are organized around a prominent descending pathway from L2/3→L5, suggesting that sensory cortices are elaborations on a basic motor cortex-like plan. PMID:21245906

  7. Sensory-driven and spontaneous gamma oscillations engage distinct cortical circuitry.

    PubMed

    Welle, Cristin G; Contreras, Diego

    2016-04-01

    Gamma oscillations are a robust component of sensory responses but are also part of the background spontaneous activity of the brain. To determine whether the properties of gamma oscillations in cortex are specific to their mechanism of generation, we compared in mouse visual cortex in vivo the laminar geometry and single-neuron rhythmicity of oscillations produced during sensory representation with those occurring spontaneously in the absence of stimulation. In mouse visual cortex under anesthesia (isoflurane and xylazine), visual stimulation triggered oscillations mainly between 20 and 50 Hz, which, because of their similar functional significance to gamma oscillations in higher mammals, we define here as gamma range. Sensory representation in visual cortex specifically increased gamma oscillation amplitude in the supragranular (L2/3) and granular (L4) layers and strongly entrained putative excitatory and inhibitory neurons in infragranular layers, while spontaneous gamma oscillations were distributed evenly through the cortical depth and primarily entrained putative inhibitory neurons in the infragranular (L5/6) cortical layers. The difference in laminar distribution of gamma oscillations during the two different conditions may result from differences in the source of excitatory input to the cortex. In addition, modulation of superficial gamma oscillation amplitude did not result in a corresponding change in deep-layer oscillations, suggesting that superficial and deep layers of cortex may utilize independent but related networks for gamma generation. These results demonstrate that stimulus-driven gamma oscillations engage cortical circuitry in a manner distinct from spontaneous oscillations and suggest multiple networks for the generation of gamma oscillations in cortex. PMID:26719085

  8. Imaging tactile imagery: changes in brain connectivity support perceptual grounding of mental images in primary sensory cortices.

    PubMed

    Schmidt, Timo Torsten; Ostwald, Dirk; Blankenburg, Felix

    2014-09-01

    Constructing mental representations in the absence of sensory stimulation is a fundamental ability of the human mind and has been investigated in numerous brain imaging studies. However, it is still unclear how brain areas facilitating mental construction processes interact with brain regions related to specific sensory representations. In this fMRI study subjects formed mental representations of tactile stimuli either from memory (imagery) or from presentation of actual corresponding vibrotactile patterned stimuli. First our analysis addressed the question of whether tactile imagery recruits primary somatosensory cortex (SI), because the activation of early perceptual areas is classically interpreted as perceptual grounding of the mental image. We also tested whether a network, referred to as 'core construction system', is involved in the generation of mental representations in the somatosensory domain. In fact, we observed imagery-induced activation of SI. We further found support for the notion of a modality independent construction network with the retrosplenial cortices and the precuneus as core components, which were supplemented with the left inferior frontal gyrus (IFG). Finally, psychophysiological interaction (PPI) analyses revealed robust imagery-modulated changes in the connectivity of these construction related areas, which suggests that they orchestrate the assembly of an abstract mental representation. Interestingly, we found increased coupling between prefrontal cortex (left IFG) and SI during mental imagery, indicating the augmentation of an abstract mental representation by reactivating perceptually grounded sensory details. PMID:24836010

  9. Variance predicts salience in central sensory processing

    PubMed Central

    Hermundstad, Ann M; Briguglio, John J; Conte, Mary M; Victor, Jonathan D; Balasubramanian, Vijay; Tkačik, Gašper

    2014-01-01

    Information processing in the sensory periphery is shaped by natural stimulus statistics. In the periphery, a transmission bottleneck constrains performance; thus efficient coding implies that natural signal components with a predictably wider range should be compressed. In a different regime—when sampling limitations constrain performance—efficient coding implies that more resources should be allocated to informative features that are more variable. We propose that this regime is relevant for sensory cortex when it extracts complex features from limited numbers of sensory samples. To test this prediction, we use central visual processing as a model: we show that visual sensitivity for local multi-point spatial correlations, described by dozens of independently-measured parameters, can be quantitatively predicted from the structure of natural images. This suggests that efficient coding applies centrally, where it extends to higher-order sensory features and operates in a regime in which sensitivity increases with feature variability. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.03722.001 PMID:25396297

  10. Phonological Processing in Human Auditory Cortical Fields

    PubMed Central

    Woods, David L.; Herron, Timothy J.; Cate, Anthony D.; Kang, Xiaojian; Yund, E. W.

    2011-01-01

    We used population-based cortical-surface analysis of functional magnetic imaging data to characterize the processing of consonant–vowel–consonant syllables (CVCs) and spectrally matched amplitude-modulated noise bursts (AMNBs) in human auditory cortex as subjects attended to auditory or visual stimuli in an intermodal selective attention paradigm. Average auditory cortical field (ACF) locations were defined using tonotopic mapping in a previous study. Activations in auditory cortex were defined by two stimulus-preference gradients: (1) Medial belt ACFs preferred AMNBs and lateral belt and parabelt fields preferred CVCs. This preference extended into core ACFs with medial regions of primary auditory cortex (A1) and the rostral field preferring AMNBs and lateral regions preferring CVCs. (2) Anterior ACFs showed smaller activations but more clearly defined stimulus preferences than did posterior ACFs. Stimulus preference gradients were unaffected by auditory attention suggesting that ACF preferences reflect the automatic processing of different spectrotemporal sound features. PMID:21541252

  11. The topology of connections between rat prefrontal, motor and sensory cortices

    PubMed Central

    Bedwell, Stacey A.; Billett, E. Ellen; Crofts, Jonathan J.; Tinsley, Chris J.

    2014-01-01

    The connections of prefrontal cortex (PFC) were investigated in the rat brain to determine the order and location of input and output connections to motor and somatosensory cortex. Retrograde (100 nl Fluoro-Gold) and anterograde (100 nl Biotinylated Dextran Amines, BDA; Fluorescein and Texas Red) neuronanatomical tracers were injected into the subdivisions of the PFC (prelimbic, ventral orbital, ventrolateral orbital, dorsolateral orbital) and their projections studied. We found clear evidence for organized input projections from the motor and somatosensory cortices to the PFC, with distinct areas of motor and cingulate cortex projecting in an ordered arrangement to the subdivisions of PFC. As injection location of retrograde tracer was moved from medial to lateral in PFC, we observed an ordered arrangement of projections occurring in sensory-motor cortex. There was a significant effect of retrograde injection location on the position of labelled cells occurring in sensory-motor cortex (dorsoventral, anterior-posterior and mediolateral axes p < 0.001). The arrangement of output projections from PFC also displayed a significant ordered projection to sensory-motor cortex (dorsoventral p < 0.001, anterior-posterior p = 0.002 and mediolateral axes p < 0.001). Statistical analysis also showed that the locations of input and output labels vary with respect to one another (in the dorsal-ventral and medial-lateral axes, p < 0.001). Taken together, the findings show that regions of PFC display an ordered arrangement of connections with sensory-motor cortex, with clear laminar organization of input connections. These results also show that input and output connections to PFC are not located in exactly the same sites and reveal a circuit between sensory-motor and PFC. PMID:25278850

  12. Cortical membrane potential signature of optimal states for sensory signal detection

    PubMed Central

    McGinley, Matthew J.; David, Stephen V.; McCormick, David A.

    2015-01-01

    The neural correlates of optimal states for signal detection task performance are largely unknown. One hypothesis holds that optimal states exhibit tonically depolarized cortical neurons with enhanced spiking activity, such as occur during movement. We recorded membrane potentials of auditory cortical neurons in mice trained on a challenging tone-in-noise detection task while assessing arousal with simultaneous pupillometry and hippocampal recordings. Arousal measures accurately predicted multiple modes of membrane potential activity, including: rhythmic slow oscillations at low arousal, stable hyperpolarization at intermediate arousal, and depolarization during phasic or tonic periods of hyper-arousal. Walking always occurred during hyper-arousal. Optimal signal detection behavior and sound-evoked responses, at both sub-threshold and spiking levels, occurred at intermediate arousal when pre-decision membrane potentials were stably hyperpolarized. These results reveal a cortical physiological signature of the classically-observed inverted-U relationship between task performance and arousal, and that optimal detection exhibits enhanced sensory-evoked responses and reduced background synaptic activity. PMID:26074005

  13. [Hemicape-like sensory disturbance caused by cortical infarction in the postcentral gyrus].

    PubMed

    Yamashita, Chikara; Kawamura, Nobutoshi; Torii, Takako; Ohyagi, Yasumasa; Kira, Jun-ichi

    2012-01-01

    We report a case of a small cortical infarction in the postcentral gyrus that presented an isolated hemicape-like sensory disturbance. A 47-year-old man suddenly developed numbness and paresthesia in the left neck, shoulder, arm, and upper trunk. Examination revealed hypoesthesia to touch and pain in these areas along with a hemicape-like distribution. The sensitivity to cold and vibration was normal, and two-point discrimination and graphesthesia were preserved. The patient had a normal visual field, muscle strength, and reflexes, and there were no neuropsychological deficits. Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) demonstrated a fresh, small cerebral infarction in the right postcentral gyrus, which was superior medial to the precentral knob. The area of infarction in this patient corresponds well with the area of the upper trunk, neck, head, shoulder, and arm in the sensory homunculus drawn by Penfield and Rassumussen. The spinal MRI was normal. Transesophageal echocardiography disclosed a patent foramen ovale with a right-to-left-shunt. The patient was diagnosed as having acute cerebral infarction, probably due to paradoxical embolism, and was treated with warfarin. A small localized infarct in the postcentral gyrus can present an isolated sensory disturbance with an atypical hemicape-like distribution. PMID:22453043

  14. Sensory Processing Subtypes in Autism: Association with Adaptive Behavior

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lane, Alison E.; Young, Robyn L.; Baker, Amy E. Z.; Angley, Manya T.

    2010-01-01

    Children with autism are frequently observed to experience difficulties in sensory processing. This study examined specific patterns of sensory processing in 54 children with autistic disorder and their association with adaptive behavior. Model-based cluster analysis revealed three distinct sensory processing subtypes in autism. These subtypes…

  15. Sensory cortical re-mapping following upper-limb amputation and subsequent targeted reinnervation: A case report.

    PubMed

    Yao, Jun; Chen, Albert; Kuiken, Todd; Carmona, Carolina; Dewald, Julius

    2015-01-01

    This case study demonstrates the change of sensory cortical representations of the residual parts of the arm in an individual who underwent a trans-humeral amputation and subsequent targeted reinnervation (TR). As a relatively new surgical technique, TR restores a direct neural connection from amputated sensorimotor nerves to specific target muscles. This method has been successfully applied to upper-limb and lower-limb amputees, and has shown effectiveness in regaining control signals via the newly re-innervated muscles. Correspondingly, recent study results have shown that motor representations for the missing limb move closer to their original locations following TR. Besides regaining motor control signals, TR also restores the sensation in the re-innervated skin areas. We therefore hypothesize that TR causes analogous cortical sensory remapping that may return closer to their original locations. In order to test this hypothesis, cortical activity in response to sensory-level electrical stimulation in different parts of the arm was studied longitudinally in one amputated individual before and up to 2 years after TR. Our results showed that 1) before TR, the cortical response to sensory electrical stimulation in the residual limb showed a diffuse bilateral pattern without a clear focus in either the time or spatial domain; and 2) 2 years after TR, the sensory map of the reinnervated median nerve reorganized, showing predominant activity over the contralateral S1 hand area as well as moderate activity over the ipsilateral S1. Therefore, this work provides new evidence for long-term sensory cortical plasticity in the human brain after TR. PMID:26106558

  16. Sensory cortical re-mapping following upper-limb amputation and subsequent targeted reinnervation: A case report

    PubMed Central

    Yao, Jun; Chen, Albert; Kuiken, Todd; Carmona, Carolina; Dewald, Julius

    2015-01-01

    This case study demonstrates the change of sensory cortical representations of the residual parts of the arm in an individual who underwent a trans-humeral amputation and subsequent targeted reinnervation (TR). As a relatively new surgical technique, TR restores a direct neural connection from amputated sensorimotor nerves to specific target muscles. This method has been successfully applied to upper-limb and lower-limb amputees, and has shown effectiveness in regaining control signals via the newly re-innervated muscles. Correspondingly, recent study results have shown that motor representations for the missing limb move closer to their original locations following TR. Besides regaining motor control signals, TR also restores the sensation in the re-innervated skin areas. We therefore hypothesize that TR causes analogous cortical sensory remapping that may return closer to their original locations. In order to test this hypothesis, cortical activity in response to sensory-level electrical stimulation in different parts of the arm was studied longitudinally in one amputated individual before and up to 2 years after TR. Our results showed that 1) before TR, the cortical response to sensory electrical stimulation in the residual limb showed a diffuse bilateral pattern without a clear focus in either the time or spatial domain; and 2) 2 years after TR, the sensory map of the reinnervated median nerve reorganized, showing predominant activity over the contralateral S1 hand area as well as moderate activity over the ipsilateral S1. Therefore, this work provides new evidence for long-term sensory cortical plasticity in the human brain after TR. PMID:26106558

  17. Sensory Processing in Adults with Autism Spectrum Disorders

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Crane, Laura; Goddard, Lorna; Pring, Linda

    2009-01-01

    Unusual sensory processing has been widely reported in autism spectrum disorders (ASDs); however, the majority of research in this area has focused on children. The present study assessed sensory processing in adults with ASD using the Adult/Adolescent Sensory Profile (AASP), a 60-item self-report questionnaire assessing levels of sensory…

  18. A Neural Circuit That Controls Cortical State, Plasticity, and the Gain of Sensory Responses in Mouse

    PubMed Central

    Stryker, Michael P.

    2015-01-01

    Neurons in the visual cortex were first found to be exquisitely selective for particular properties of visual stimuli in anesthetized animals, including mice. Studies of alert mice in an apparatus that allowed them to stand or run revealed that locomotion causes a change in cortical state that dramatically increases the magnitude of responses in neurons of the visual cortex without altering selectivity, effectively changing the gain of sensory responses. Locomotion also dramatically enhances adult plasticity in the recovery from long-term visual deprivation. We have studied the elements and operation of the neural circuit responsible for the enhancement of activity and shown that it enhances plasticity even in mice not free to run. The circuit consists of projections ascending from the midbrain locomotor region (MLR) to the basal forebrain, activating cholinergic and perhaps other projections to excite inhibitory interneurons expressing vasoactive intestinal peptide (VIP) in the visual cortex. VIP cells activated by locomotion inhibit interneurons that express somatostatin (SST), thereby disinhibiting the excitatory principal neurons and allowing them to respond more strongly to effective visual stimuli. These findings reveal in alert animals how the ascending reticular activating system described in anesthetized animals 50 years ago operates to control cortical state. PMID:25948638

  19. Poor motor function is associated with reduced sensory processing after stroke.

    PubMed

    Campfens, S Floor; Zandvliet, Sarah B; Meskers, Carel G M; Schouten, Alfred C; van Putten, Michel J A M; van der Kooij, Herman

    2015-04-01

    The possibility to regain motor function after stroke depends on the intactness of motor and sensory pathways. In this study, we evaluated afferent sensory pathway information transfer and processing after stroke with the coherence between cortical activity and a position perturbation (position-cortical coherence, PCC). Eleven subacute stroke survivors participated in this study. Subjects performed a motor task with the affected and non-affected arm while continuous wrist position perturbations were applied. Cortical activity was measured using EEG. PCC was calculated between position perturbation and EEG at the contralateral and ipsilateral sensorimotor area. The presence of PCC was quantified as the number of frequencies where PCC is larger than zero across the sensorimotor area. All subjects showed significant contralateral PCC in affected and non-affected wrist tasks. Subjects with poor motor function had a reduced presence of contralateral PCC compared with subjects with good motor function in the affected wrist tasks. Amplitude of significant PCC did not differ between subjects with good and poor motor function. Our results show that poor motor function is associated with reduced sensory pathway information transfer and processing in subacute stroke subjects. Position-cortical coherence may provide additional insight into mechanisms of recovery of motor function after stroke. PMID:25651979

  20. Sensory processing dysfunction in the personal experience and neuronal machinery of schizophrenia.

    PubMed

    Javitt, Daniel C; Freedman, Robert

    2015-01-01

    Sensory processing deficits, first investigated by Kraepelin and Bleuler as possible pathophysiological mechanisms in schizophrenia, are now being recharacterized in the context of our current understanding of the molecular and neurobiological brain mechanisms involved. The National Institute of Mental Health Research Domain Criteria position these deficits as intermediaries between molecular and cellular mechanisms and clinical symptoms of schizophrenia, such as hallucinations. The prepulse inhibition of startle responses by a weaker preceding tone, the inhibitory gating of response to paired sensory stimuli characterized using the auditory P50 evoked response, and the detection of slight deviations in patterns of sensory stimulation eliciting the cortical mismatch negativity potential demonstrate deficits in early sensory processing mechanisms, whose molecular and neurobiological bases are increasingly well understood. Deficits in sensory processing underlie more complex cognitive dysfunction and are in turn affected by higher-level cognitive difficulties. These deficits are now being used to identify genes involved in familial transmission of schizophrenia and to monitor potentially therapeutic drug effects for both treatment and prevention. This research also provides a clinical reminder that patients' sensory perception of the surrounding world, even during treatment sessions, may differ considerably from others' perceptions. A person's ability to understand and interact effectively with the surrounding world ultimately depends on an underlying sensory experience of it. PMID:25553496

  1. Sensory processing dysfunction among Saudi children with and without autism

    PubMed Central

    Al-Heizan, Mohammed O.; AlAbdulwahab, Sami S; Kachanathu, Shaji John; Natho, Mohan

    2015-01-01

    [Purpose] There is a dearth of studies that have examined the occurrence of sensory processing dysfunction and its components in Saudi Arabian children with autism. Therefore, this study investigated the manifestation of sensory processing dysfunction in autism and compared the functional components of sensory processing between Saudi Arabian children with and without autism. [Subjects and Methods] A convenience sample of 46 Saudi Arabian children with autism and 30 children without autism participated in this study. The sensory processing functions of both groups were assessed with the Short Sensory Profile. [Results] The overall findings indicated that 84.8% of children with autism demonstrated definite sensory processing dysfunction. The most prevalent sensory processing dysfunctions involved the under-responsive/seeks sensation (89.13%), auditory filtering (73.90%), and tactile sensitivity (60.87%) domains. Most of the children without autism (66.66%) demonstrated typical sensory function; the most prevalent sensory processing dysfunctions involved the tactile sensitivity (33.3%), under-responsive/seeks sensation (23.33%), and movement sensitivity (20%) domains. [Conclusion] Saudi Arabian children with and without autism have clinically significant sensory dysfunctions. However, the prevalence of those sensory dysfunctions in children with autism is significantly higher than in the children without autism. PMID:26157208

  2. Dynamic modulation of shared sensory and motor cortical rhythms mediates speech and non-speech discrimination performance

    PubMed Central

    Bowers, Andrew L.; Saltuklaroglu, Tim; Harkrider, Ashley; Wilson, Matt; Toner, Mary A.

    2014-01-01

    Oscillatory models of speech processing have proposed that rhythmic cortical oscillations in sensory and motor regions modulate speech sound processing from the bottom-up via phase reset at low frequencies (3–10 Hz) and from the top-down via the disinhibition of alpha/beta rhythms (8–30 Hz). To investigate how the proposed rhythms mediate perceptual performance, electroencephalographic (EEG) was recorded while participants passively listened to or actively identified speech and tone-sweeps in a two-force choice in noise discrimination task presented at high and low signal-to-noise ratios. EEG data were decomposed using independent component analysis and clustered across participants using principle component methods in EEGLAB. Left and right hemisphere sensorimotor and posterior temporal lobe clusters were identified. Alpha and beta suppression was associated with active tasks only in sensorimotor and temporal clusters. In posterior temporal clusters, increases in phase reset at low frequencies were driven by the quality of bottom-up acoustic information for speech and non-speech stimuli, whereas phase reset in sensorimotor clusters was associated with top-down active task demands. A comparison of correct discrimination trials to those identified at chance showed an earlier performance related effect for the left sensorimotor cluster relative to the left-temporal lobe cluster during the syllable discrimination task only. The right sensorimotor cluster was associated with performance related differences for tone–sweep stimuli only. Findings are consistent with internal model accounts suggesting that early efferent sensorimotor models transmitted along alpha and beta channels reflect a release from inhibition related to active attention to auditory discrimination. Results are discussed in the broader context of dynamic, oscillatory models of cognition proposing that top-down internally generated states interact with bottom-up sensory processing to enhance task

  3. The Applicability of the Short Sensory Profile for Screening Sensory Processing Disorders among Israeli Children

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Engel-Yeger, Batya

    2010-01-01

    The objective of this study was to examine the applicability of the short sensory profile (SSP) for screening sensory processing disorders (SPDs) among typical children in Israel, and to evaluate the relationship between SPDs and socio-demographic parameters. Participants were 395 Israeli children, aged 3 years to 10 years 11 months, with typical…

  4. The cortical sensory representation of genitalia in women and men: a systematic review

    PubMed Central

    Cazala, Fadwa; Vienney, Nicolas; Stoléru, Serge

    2015-01-01

    Background Although genital sensations are an essential aspect of sexual behavior, the cortical somatosensory representation of genitalia in women and men remain poorly known and contradictory results have been reported. Objective To conduct a systematic review of studies based on electrophysiological and functional neuroimaging studies, with the aim to identify insights brought by modern methods since the early descriptions of the sensory homunculus in the primary somatosensory cortex (SI). Results The review supports the interpretation that there are two distinct representations of genital sensations in SI, one on the medial surface and the other on the lateral surface. In addition, the review suggests that the secondary somatosensory cortex and the posterior insula support a representation of the affective aspects of genital sensation. Conclusion In view of the erogenous character of sensations originating in the genitalia, future studies on this topic should systematically assess qualitatively as well as quantitatively the sexually stimulating and/or sexually pleasurable characteristics of sensations felt by subjects in response to experimental stimuli. PMID:25766001

  5. The cortical sensory representation of genitalia in women and men: a systematic review.

    PubMed

    Cazala, Fadwa; Vienney, Nicolas; Stoléru, Serge

    2015-01-01

    Background : Although genital sensations are an essential aspect of sexual behavior, the cortical somatosensory representation of genitalia in women and men remain poorly known and contradictory results have been reported. Objective : To conduct a systematic review of studies based on electrophysiological and functional neuroimaging studies, with the aim to identify insights brought by modern methods since the early descriptions of the sensory homunculus in the primary somatosensory cortex (SI). Results : The review supports the interpretation that there are two distinct representations of genital sensations in SI, one on the medial surface and the other on the lateral surface. In addition, the review suggests that the secondary somatosensory cortex and the posterior insula support a representation of the affective aspects of genital sensation. Conclusion : In view of the erogenous character of sensations originating in the genitalia, future studies on this topic should systematically assess qualitatively as well as quantitatively the sexually stimulating and/or sexually pleasurable characteristics of sensations felt by subjects in response to experimental stimuli. PMID:25766001

  6. Pairing broadband noise with cortical stimulation induces extensive suppression of ascending sensory activity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Markovitz, Craig D.; Hogan, Patrick S.; Wesen, Kyle A.; Lim, Hubert H.

    2015-04-01

    Objective. The corticofugal system can alter coding along the ascending sensory pathway. Within the auditory system, electrical stimulation of the auditory cortex (AC) paired with a pure tone can cause egocentric shifts in the tuning of auditory neurons, making them more sensitive to the pure tone frequency. Since tinnitus has been linked with hyperactivity across auditory neurons, we sought to develop a new neuromodulation approach that could suppress a wide range of neurons rather than enhance specific frequency-tuned neurons. Approach. We performed experiments in the guinea pig to assess the effects of cortical stimulation paired with broadband noise (PN-Stim) on ascending auditory activity within the central nucleus of the inferior colliculus (CNIC), a widely studied region for AC stimulation paradigms. Main results. All eight stimulated AC subregions induced extensive suppression of activity across the CNIC that was not possible with noise stimulation alone. This suppression built up over time and remained after the PN-Stim paradigm. Significance. We propose that the corticofugal system is designed to decrease the brain’s input gain to irrelevant stimuli and PN-Stim is able to artificially amplify this effect to suppress neural firing across the auditory system. The PN-Stim concept may have potential for treating tinnitus and other neurological disorders.

  7. Pairing broadband noise with cortical stimulation induces extensive suppression of ascending sensory activity

    PubMed Central

    Markovitz, Craig D.; Hogan, Patrick S.; Wesen, Kyle A.; Lim, Hubert H.

    2015-01-01

    Objective The corticofugal system can alter coding along the ascending sensory pathway. Within the auditory system, electrical stimulation of the auditory cortex (AC) paired with a pure tone can cause egocentric shifts in the tuning of auditory neurons, making them more sensitive to the pure tone frequency. Since tinnitus has been linked with hyperactivity across auditory neurons, we sought to develop a new neuromodulation approach that could suppress a wide range of neurons rather than enhance specific frequency-tuned neurons. Approach We performed experiments in the guinea pig to assess the effects of cortical stimulation paired with broadband noise (PN-Stim) on ascending auditory activity within the central nucleus of the inferior colliculus (CNIC), a widely studied region for AC stimulation paradigms. Main results All eight stimulated AC regions induced extensive suppression of activity across the CNIC that was not possible with noise stimulation alone. This suppression built up over time and remained after the PN-Stim paradigm. Significance We propose that the corticofugal system is designed to decrease the brain’s input gain to irrelevant stimuli and PN-Stim is able to artificially amplify this effect to suppress neural firing across the auditory system. The PN-Stim concept may have potential for treating tinnitus and other neurological disorders. PMID:25686163

  8. Model of interactions between cortical areas for sensory-motor programs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Burnod, Yves; Guigon, Emmanuel; Otto, Isabelle; Grandguillaume, Philippe; Boutkhil, Latifa; Dorizzi, Bernadette; Marchal, Patrick

    1992-04-01

    The brain represents perceptual and motor information in several reference frames (for example body-centered, object-centered, or retinal-centered reference frames). In a simple sensory-motor program such as looking at and taking an object, at least three fundamental processes must be carried out by the cerebral cortex; (1) in order to recognize the target object, the cortex has to transform the pattern of excitation on the retina from a retinotopic coordinate system to a coordinate system centered on the object itself; (2) in order to bring a hand to the desired position in space, the cortex must transform the visual information related to the target location (relative to the hand) into an appropriate motor command of the reaching hand; (3) in order to guide coherent behavioral actions, more complex sensory-motor programs (for example, conditional reaching of a target) are constructed from time-dependent relations between these basic transformations. The cortex correlates sensory and motor events and learns to prepare responses to forthcoming events. Neurophysiological data on the motor area of the monkey allowed us to model the coordinate transformations from body-centered to arm-centered reference frames involved in the command of arm reaching movements in 3-D space. Anatomical and neuropsychological data suggest similar coordinate transformations along the visual pathway to relate retinal-centered to object-centered reference frames and we have thus extended the model to this coordinate transformation. Time integration seems to proceed differently since internal representations of programs are dynamically constructed. Available physiological and anatomical data on frontal areas (and particularly prefrontal cortex) help to predict specific learning mechanisms for time processing and then construct a model for learning sensory-motor sequences.

  9. Sensory Processing Dysfunction in the Personal Experience and Neuronal Machinery of Schizophrenia

    PubMed Central

    Javitt, Daniel C.; Freedman, Robert

    2015-01-01

    Sensory processing deficits, first investigated by Kraeplin and Bleuler as possible pathophysiological mechanisms in schizophrenia, are now being re-characterized in the context of modern understanding of the involved molecular and neurobiological brain mechanisms. The National Institute of Mental Health Research Domain Criteria position these deficits as intermediaries between molecular and cellular mechanisms and clinical symptoms of schizophrenia such as hallucinations. The pre-pulse inhibition of startle responses by a weaker preceding tone, the inhibitory gating of response to paired sensory stimuli characterized using the auditory P50 evoked response, and the detection of slightly different stimuli that elicits the cortical Mismatch Negativity potential demonstrate deficits in early sensory processing mechanisms, whose molecular and neurobiological bases are increasingly well understood. Deficits in sensory processing underlie more complex cognitive dysfunction and, vice versa, are affected by higher-level cognitive difficulties. These deficits are now being used to identify genes involved in familial transmission of the illness and to monitor potentially therapeutic drug effects for both treatment and prevention. This research also provides a clinical reminder that patients’ sensory perception of the surrounding world, even during treatment sessions, may differ considerable from others’ perceptions. A person’s ability to understand and interact effectively with surrounding world ultimately depends upon an underlying sensory experience of it. PMID:25553496

  10. Persistence of Functional Sensory Maps in the Absence of Cortical Layers in the Somsatosensory Cortex of Reeler Mice.

    PubMed

    Guy, Julien; Wagener, Robin J; Möck, Martin; Staiger, Jochen F

    2015-09-01

    In rodents, layer IV of the primary somatosensory cortex contains the barrel field, where individual, large facial whiskers are represented as a dense cluster of cells. In the reeler mouse, a model of disturbed cortical development characterized by a loss of cortical lamination, the barrel field exists in a distorted manner. Little is known about the consequences of such a highly disturbed lamination on cortical function in this model. We used in vivo intrinsic signal optical imaging together with piezo-controlled whisker stimulation to explore sensory map organization and stimulus representation in the barrel field. We found that the loss of cortical layers in reeler mice had surprisingly little incidence on these properties. The overall topological order of whisker representations is highly preserved and the functional activation of individual whisker representations is similar in size and strength to wild-type controls. Because intrinsic imaging measures hemodynamic signals, we furthermore investigated the cortical blood vessel pattern of both genotypes, where we also did not detect major differences. In summary, the loss of the reelin protein results in a widespread disturbance of cortical development which compromises neither the establishment nor the function of an ordered, somatotopic map of the facial whiskers. PMID:24759695

  11. Persistence of Functional Sensory Maps in the Absence of Cortical Layers in the Somsatosensory Cortex of Reeler Mice

    PubMed Central

    Guy, Julien; Wagener, Robin J.; Möck, Martin; Staiger, Jochen F.

    2015-01-01

    In rodents, layer IV of the primary somatosensory cortex contains the barrel field, where individual, large facial whiskers are represented as a dense cluster of cells. In the reeler mouse, a model of disturbed cortical development characterized by a loss of cortical lamination, the barrel field exists in a distorted manner. Little is known about the consequences of such a highly disturbed lamination on cortical function in this model. We used in vivo intrinsic signal optical imaging together with piezo-controlled whisker stimulation to explore sensory map organization and stimulus representation in the barrel field. We found that the loss of cortical layers in reeler mice had surprisingly little incidence on these properties. The overall topological order of whisker representations is highly preserved and the functional activation of individual whisker representations is similar in size and strength to wild-type controls. Because intrinsic imaging measures hemodynamic signals, we furthermore investigated the cortical blood vessel pattern of both genotypes, where we also did not detect major differences. In summary, the loss of the reelin protein results in a widespread disturbance of cortical development which compromises neither the establishment nor the function of an ordered, somatotopic map of the facial whiskers. PMID:24759695

  12. Perspectives on Sensory Processing Disorder: A Call for Translational Research

    PubMed Central

    Miller, Lucy J.; Nielsen, Darci M.; Schoen, Sarah A.; Brett-Green, Barbara A.

    2009-01-01

    This article explores the convergence of two fields, which have similar theoretical origins: a clinical field originally known as sensory integration and a branch of neuroscience that conducts research in an area also called sensory integration. Clinically, the term was used to identify a pattern of dysfunction in children and adults, as well as a related theory, assessment, and treatment method for children who have atypical responses to ordinary sensory stimulation. Currently the term for the disorder is sensory processing disorder (SPD). In neuroscience, the term sensory integration refers to converging information in the brain from one or more sensory domains. A recent subspecialty in neuroscience labeled multisensory integration (MSI) refers to the neural process that occurs when sensory input from two or more different sensory modalities converge. Understanding the specific meanings of the term sensory integration intended by the clinical and neuroscience fields and the term MSI in neuroscience is critical. A translational research approach would improve exploration of crucial research questions in both the basic science and clinical science. Refinement of the conceptual model of the disorder and the related treatment approach would help prioritize which specific hypotheses should be studied in both the clinical and neuroscience fields. The issue is how we can facilitate a translational approach between researchers in the two fields. Multidisciplinary, collaborative studies would increase knowledge of brain function and could make a significant contribution to alleviating the impairments of individuals with SPD and their families. PMID:19826493

  13. Reported Sensory Processing of Children with Down Syndrome

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bruni, Maryanne; Cameron, Debra; Dua, Shelly; Noy, Sarah

    2010-01-01

    Investigators have identified delays and differences in cognitive, language, motor, and sensory development in children with Down syndrome (DS). The purpose of this study was to determine the parent-reported frequency of sensory processing issues in children with DS aged 3-10 years, and the parent-reported functional impact of those sensory…

  14. Oxytocin Enhances Social Recognition by Modulating Cortical Control of Early Olfactory Processing.

    PubMed

    Oettl, Lars-Lennart; Ravi, Namasivayam; Schneider, Miriam; Scheller, Max F; Schneider, Peggy; Mitre, Mariela; da Silva Gouveia, Miriam; Froemke, Robert C; Chao, Moses V; Young, W Scott; Meyer-Lindenberg, Andreas; Grinevich, Valery; Shusterman, Roman; Kelsch, Wolfgang

    2016-05-01

    Oxytocin promotes social interactions and recognition of conspecifics that rely on olfaction in most species. The circuit mechanisms through which oxytocin modifies olfactory processing are incompletely understood. Here, we observed that optogenetically induced oxytocin release enhanced olfactory exploration and same-sex recognition of adult rats. Consistent with oxytocin's function in the anterior olfactory cortex, particularly in social cue processing, region-selective receptor deletion impaired social recognition but left odor discrimination and recognition intact outside a social context. Oxytocin transiently increased the drive of the anterior olfactory cortex projecting to olfactory bulb interneurons. Cortical top-down recruitment of interneurons dynamically enhanced the inhibitory input to olfactory bulb projection neurons and increased the signal-to-noise of their output. In summary, oxytocin generates states for optimized information extraction in an early cortical top-down network that is required for social interactions with potential implications for sensory processing deficits in autism spectrum disorders. PMID:27112498

  15. Fast Synaptic Inhibition in Spinal Sensory Processing and Pain Control

    PubMed Central

    Zeilhofer, Hanns Ulrich; Wildner, Hendrik; Yevenes, Gonzalo E.

    2013-01-01

    The two amino acids γ-amino butyric acid (GABA) and glycine mediate fast inhibitory neurotransmission in different CNS areas and serve pivotal roles in the spinal sensory processing. Under healthy conditions, they limit the excitability of spinal terminals of primary sensory nerve fibers and of intrinsic dorsal horn neurons through pre- and postsynaptic mechanisms, and thereby facilitate the spatial and temporal discrimination of sensory stimuli. Removal of fast inhibition not only reduces the fidelity of normal sensory processing but also provokes symptoms very much reminiscent of pathological and chronic pain syndromes. This review summarizes our knowledge of the molecular bases of spinal inhibitory neurotransmission and its organization in dorsal horn sensory circuits. Particular emphasis is placed on the role and mechanisms of spinal inhibitory malfunction in inflammatory and neuropathic chronic pain syndromes. PMID:22298656

  16. Neural Mechanisms of Cortical Motion Computation Based on a Neuromorphic Sensory System

    PubMed Central

    Abdul-Kreem, Luma Issa; Neumann, Heiko

    2015-01-01

    The visual cortex analyzes motion information along hierarchically arranged visual areas that interact through bidirectional interconnections. This work suggests a bio-inspired visual model focusing on the interactions of the cortical areas in which a new mechanism of feedforward and feedback processing are introduced. The model uses a neuromorphic vision sensor (silicon retina) that simulates the spike-generation functionality of the biological retina. Our model takes into account two main model visual areas, namely V1 and MT, with different feature selectivities. The initial motion is estimated in model area V1 using spatiotemporal filters to locally detect the direction of motion. Here, we adapt the filtering scheme originally suggested by Adelson and Bergen to make it consistent with the spike representation of the DVS. The responses of area V1 are weighted and pooled by area MT cells which are selective to different velocities, i.e. direction and speed. Such feature selectivity is here derived from compositions of activities in the spatio-temporal domain and integrating over larger space-time regions (receptive fields). In order to account for the bidirectional coupling of cortical areas we match properties of the feature selectivity in both areas for feedback processing. For such linkage we integrate the responses over different speeds along a particular preferred direction. Normalization of activities is carried out over the spatial as well as the feature domains to balance the activities of individual neurons in model areas V1 and MT. Our model was tested using different stimuli that moved in different directions. The results reveal that the error margin between the estimated motion and synthetic ground truth is decreased in area MT comparing with the initial estimation of area V1. In addition, the modulated V1 cell activations shows an enhancement of the initial motion estimation that is steered by feedback signals from MT cells. PMID:26554589

  17. Cortical EEG components that reflect inverse effectiveness during visuotactile integration processing.

    PubMed

    Kanayama, Noriaki; Kimura, Kenta; Hiraki, Kazuo

    2015-02-19

    Multisensory integration is required to interpret information from multiple senses and then produce the appropriate behavioral output. Inverse effectiveness, a phenomenon in which weaker stimuli induce greater activation of multisensory neurons than do stronger stimuli, is an essential component of multisensory integration. The superior colliculus is especially abundant in multisensory neurons with properties of inverse effectiveness. However, multisensory neurons are distributed throughout the brain, suggesting that a wide range of brain regions are involved in generating multisensory behavior in addition to the superior colliculus. In this study, we aimed to use scalp EEG to elucidate the cortical responses that respond to multisensory stimuli according to the principle of inverse effectiveness. By modulating the intensity of the tactile aspect of a simultaneous visuotactile stimulus, we explored the time-frequency component of scalp EEG waveforms produced during multi-sensory stimulation. Using this method, we determined the relative values and temporal dynamics of the increment of power spectrum (event-related spectrum perturbation) and phase coherence across trials (e.g., inter-trial phase coherency) produced by multisensory stimulation compared to unisensory stimulation. In the somatosensory and anterior cingulate cortices, we observed significant differences in the inter-trial phase coherence of the theta band oscillation 200-400 ms post-stimulus, in response to visuotactile (multisensory) and tactile (unisensory) stimulation, while no differences were found in later time windows and other cortical areas. These results suggest that inverse effectiveness is an important aspect of multi-sensory processing in the somato-sensory and frontal cerebral cortices. PMID:25514335

  18. Sensory processing and world modeling for an active ranging device

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hong, Tsai-Hong; Wu, Angela Y.

    1991-01-01

    In this project, we studied world modeling and sensory processing for laser range data. World Model data representation and operation were defined. Sensory processing algorithms for point processing and linear feature detection were designed and implemented. The interface between world modeling and sensory processing in the Servo and Primitive levels was investigated and implemented. In the primitive level, linear features detectors for edges were also implemented, analyzed and compared. The existing world model representations is surveyed. Also presented is the design and implementation of the Y-frame model, a hierarchical world model. The interfaces between the world model module and the sensory processing module are discussed as well as the linear feature detectors that were designed and implemented.

  19. Strain differences of the effect of enucleation and anophthalmia on the size and growth of sensory cortices in mice.

    PubMed

    Massé, Ian O; Guillemette, Sonia; Laramée, Marie-Eve; Bronchti, Gilles; Boire, Denis

    2014-11-01

    Anophthalmia is a condition in which the eye does not develop from the early embryonic period. Early blindness induces cross-modal plastic modifications in the brain such as auditory and haptic activations of the visual cortex and also leads to a greater solicitation of the somatosensory and auditory cortices. The visual cortex is activated by auditory stimuli in anophthalmic mice and activity is known to alter the growth pattern of the cerebral cortex. The size of the primary visual, auditory and somatosensory cortices and of the corresponding specific sensory thalamic nuclei were measured in intact and enucleated C57Bl/6J mice and in ZRDCT anophthalmic mice (ZRDCT/An) to evaluate the contribution of cross-modal activity on the growth of the cerebral cortex. In addition, the size of these structures were compared in intact, enucleated and anophthalmic fourth generation backcrossed hybrid C57Bl/6J×ZRDCT/An mice to parse out the effects of mouse strains and of the different visual deprivations. The visual cortex was smaller in the anophthalmic ZRDCT/An than in the intact and enucleated C57Bl/6J mice. Also the auditory cortex was larger and the somatosensory cortex smaller in the ZRDCT/An than in the intact and enucleated C57Bl/6J mice. The size differences of sensory cortices between the enucleated and anophthalmic mice were no longer present in the hybrid mice, showing specific genetic differences between C57Bl/6J and ZRDCT mice. The post natal size increase of the visual cortex was less in the enucleated than in the anophthalmic and intact hybrid mice. This suggests differences in the activity of the visual cortex between enucleated and anophthalmic mice and that early in-utero spontaneous neural activity in the visual system contributes to the shaping of functional properties of cortical networks. PMID:25242615

  20. Pain facilitates tactile processing in human somatosensory cortices.

    PubMed

    Ploner, Markus; Pollok, Bettina; Schnitzler, Alfons

    2004-09-01

    Touch and pain are intimately related modalities. Despite a substantial overlap in their cortical representations interactions between both modalities are largely unknown at the cortical level. We therefore used magnetoencephalography and selective nociceptive cutaneous laser stimulation to investigate the effects of brief painful stimuli on cortical processing of touch. Using a conditioning test stimulus paradigm, our results show that painful conditioning stimuli facilitate processing of tactile test stimuli applied 500 ms later. This facilitation applies to cortical responses later than 40 ms originating from primary (S1) and secondary (S2) somatosensory cortices but not to earlier S1 responses. By contrast, tactile conditioning stimuli yield a decrease of early as well as late responses to tactile test stimuli. Control experiments show that pain-induced facilitation of tactile processing is not restricted to the site of the painful conditioning stimulus, whereas auditory conditioning does not yield a comparable facilitation. Apart from a lack of spatial specificity, the facilitating effect of pain closely resembles attentional effects on cortical processing of tactile stimuli. Thus these findings may represent a physiological correlate of an alerting function of pain as a change in the internal state to prepare for processing signals of particular relevance. PMID:15115788

  1. Sensory cortex limits cortical maps and drives top-down plasticity in thalamocortical circuits

    PubMed Central

    Zembrzycki, Andreas; Chou, Shen-Ju; Ashery-Padan, Ruth; Stoykova, Anastassia; O’Leary, Dennis D.M.

    2013-01-01

    Summary Primary somatosensory cortex (S1) contains a complete body map that mirrors subcortical maps developed by peripheral sensory input projecting to sensory hindbrain, thalamus, then S1. Peripheral changes during development alter these maps through ‘bottom-up’ plasticity. Unknown is how S1 size influences map organization and if an altered S1 map feedbacks to affect subcortical maps. We show in mice that S1 is significantly reduced by cortex-specific deletion of Pax6, resulting in a reduced body map and loss of body representations by exclusion of later-differentiating sensory thalamocortical input. An initially normal sensory thalamus was re-patterned to match the aberrant S1 map by apoptotic deletion of thalamic neurons representing body parts with axons excluded from S1. Deleted representations were rescued by altering competition between thalamocortical axons by sensory deprivation or increasing S1. Thus, S1 size determined resolution and completeness of body maps and engaged ‘top-down’ plasticity that re-patterned sensory thalamus to match S1. PMID:23831966

  2. Redefining the Role of Limbic Areas in Cortical Processing.

    PubMed

    Chanes, Lorena; Barrett, Lisa Feldman

    2016-02-01

    There is increasing evidence that the brain actively constructs action and perception using past experience. In this paper, we propose that the direction of information flow along gradients of laminar differentiation provides important insight on the role of limbic cortices in cortical processing. Cortical limbic areas, with a simple laminar structure (e.g., no or rudimentary layer IV), send 'feedback' projections to lower level better laminated areas. We propose that this 'feedback' functions as predictions that drive processing throughout the cerebral cortex. This hypothesis has the potential to provide a unifying framework for an increasing number of proposals that use predictive coding to explain a myriad of neural processes and disorders, and has important implications for hypotheses about consciousness. PMID:26704857

  3. Experimental and Computational Studies of Cortical Neural Network Properties Through Signal Processing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Clawson, Wesley Patrick

    Previous studies, both theoretical and experimental, of network level dynamics in the cerebral cortex show evidence for a statistical phenomenon called criticality; a phenomenon originally studied in the context of phase transitions in physical systems and that is associated with favorable information processing in the context of the brain. The focus of this thesis is to expand upon past results with new experimentation and modeling to show a relationship between criticality and the ability to detect and discriminate sensory input. A line of theoretical work predicts maximal sensory discrimination as a functional benefit of criticality, which can then be characterized using mutual information between sensory input, visual stimulus, and neural response,. The primary finding of our experiments in the visual cortex in turtles and neuronal network modeling confirms this theoretical prediction. We show that sensory discrimination is maximized when visual cortex operates near criticality. In addition to presenting this primary finding in detail, this thesis will also address our preliminary results on change-point-detection in experimentally measured cortical dynamics.

  4. Helping Children with Sensory Processing Disorders: The Role of Occupational Therapy

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sweet, Margarita

    2010-01-01

    Normally functioning sensory systems develop through sensory experiences. Children are stimulated through their senses in many different ways. Even though a person's sensory system is intact, he or she may have a sensory processing disorder (SPD), also known as sensory integration dysfunction. This means the person's brain does not correctly…

  5. Changes in Early Cortical Visual Processing Predict Enhanced Reactivity in Deaf Individuals

    PubMed Central

    Bottari, Davide; Caclin, Anne; Giard, Marie-Hélène; Pavani, Francesco

    2011-01-01

    Individuals with profound deafness rely critically on vision to interact with their environment. Improvement of visual performance as a consequence of auditory deprivation is assumed to result from cross-modal changes occurring in late stages of visual processing. Here we measured reaction times and event-related potentials (ERPs) in profoundly deaf adults and hearing controls during a speeded visual detection task, to assess to what extent the enhanced reactivity of deaf individuals could reflect plastic changes in the early cortical processing of the stimulus. We found that deaf subjects were faster than hearing controls at detecting the visual targets, regardless of their location in the visual field (peripheral or peri-foveal). This behavioural facilitation was associated with ERP changes starting from the first detectable response in the striate cortex (C1 component) at about 80 ms after stimulus onset, and in the P1 complex (100–150 ms). In addition, we found that P1 peak amplitudes predicted the response times in deaf subjects, whereas in hearing individuals visual reactivity and ERP amplitudes correlated only at later stages of processing. These findings show that long-term auditory deprivation can profoundly alter visual processing from the earliest cortical stages. Furthermore, our results provide the first evidence of a co-variation between modified brain activity (cortical plasticity) and behavioural enhancement in this sensory-deprived population. PMID:21980501

  6. An internal model architecture for novelty detection: implications for cerebellar and collicular roles in sensory processing.

    PubMed

    Anderson, Sean R; Porrill, John; Pearson, Martin J; Pipe, Anthony G; Prescott, Tony J; Dean, Paul

    2012-01-01

    The cerebellum is thought to implement internal models for sensory prediction, but details of the underlying circuitry are currently obscure. We therefore investigated a specific example of internal-model based sensory prediction, namely detection of whisker contacts during whisking. Inputs from the vibrissae in rats can be affected by signals generated by whisker movement, a phenomenon also observable in whisking robots. Robot novelty-detection can be improved by adaptive noise-cancellation, in which an adaptive filter learns a forward model of the whisker plant that allows the sensory effects of whisking to be predicted and thus subtracted from the noisy sensory input. However, the forward model only uses information from an efference copy of the whisking commands. Here we show that the addition of sensory information from the whiskers allows the adaptive filter to learn a more complex internal model that performs more robustly than the forward model, particularly when the whisking-induced interference has a periodic structure. We then propose a neural equivalent of the circuitry required for adaptive novelty-detection in the robot, in which the role of the adaptive filter is carried out by the cerebellum, with the comparison of its output (an estimate of the self-induced interference) and the original vibrissal signal occurring in the superior colliculus, a structure noted for its central role in novelty detection. This proposal makes a specific prediction concerning the whisker-related functions of a region in cerebellar cortical zone A(2) that in rats receives climbing fibre input from the superior colliculus (via the inferior olive). This region has not been observed in non-whisking animals such as cats and primates, and its functional role in vibrissal processing has hitherto remained mysterious. Further investigation of this system may throw light on how cerebellar-based internal models could be used in broader sensory, motor and cognitive contexts. PMID

  7. Dissociating sensory from decision processes in human perceptual decision making

    PubMed Central

    Mostert, Pim; Kok, Peter; de Lange, Floris P.

    2015-01-01

    A key question within systems neuroscience is how the brain translates physical stimulation into a behavioral response: perceptual decision making. To answer this question, it is important to dissociate the neural activity underlying the encoding of sensory information from the activity underlying the subsequent temporal integration into a decision variable. Here, we adopted a decoding approach to empirically assess this dissociation in human magnetoencephalography recordings. We used a functional localizer to identify the neural signature that reflects sensory-specific processes, and subsequently traced this signature while subjects were engaged in a perceptual decision making task. Our results revealed a temporal dissociation in which sensory processing was limited to an early time window and consistent with occipital areas, whereas decision-related processing became increasingly pronounced over time, and involved parietal and frontal areas. We found that the sensory processing accurately reflected the physical stimulus, irrespective of the eventual decision. Moreover, the sensory representation was stable and maintained over time when it was required for a subsequent decision, but unstable and variable over time when it was task-irrelevant. In contrast, decision-related activity displayed long-lasting sustained components. Together, our approach dissects neuro-anatomically and functionally distinct contributions to perceptual decisions. PMID:26666393

  8. Complementary control of sensory adaptation by two types of cortical interneurons

    PubMed Central

    Natan, Ryan G; Briguglio, John J; Mwilambwe-Tshilobo, Laetitia; Jones, Sara I; Aizenberg, Mark; Goldberg, Ethan M; Geffen, Maria Neimark

    2015-01-01

    Reliably detecting unexpected sounds is important for environmental awareness and survival. By selectively reducing responses to frequently, but not rarely, occurring sounds, auditory cortical neurons are thought to enhance the brain's ability to detect unexpected events through stimulus-specific adaptation (SSA). The majority of neurons in the primary auditory cortex exhibit SSA, yet little is known about the underlying cortical circuits. We found that two types of cortical interneurons differentially amplify SSA in putative excitatory neurons. Parvalbumin-positive interneurons (PVs) amplify SSA by providing non-specific inhibition: optogenetic suppression of PVs led to an equal increase in responses to frequent and rare tones. In contrast, somatostatin-positive interneurons (SOMs) selectively reduce excitatory responses to frequent tones: suppression of SOMs led to an increase in responses to frequent, but not to rare tones. A mutually coupled excitatory-inhibitory network model accounts for distinct mechanisms by which cortical inhibitory neurons enhance the brain's sensitivity to unexpected sounds. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.09868.001 PMID:26460542

  9. Thalamic Circuit Mechanisms Link Sensory Processing in Sleep and Attention

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Zhe; Wimmer, Ralf D.; Wilson, Matthew A.; Halassa, Michael M.

    2016-01-01

    The correlation between sleep integrity and attentional performance is normally interpreted as poor sleep causing impaired attention. Here, we provide an alternative explanation for this correlation: common thalamic circuits regulate sensory processing across sleep and attention, and their disruption may lead to correlated dysfunction. Using multi-electrode recordings in mice, we find that rate and rhythmicity of thalamic reticular nucleus (TRN) neurons are predictive of their functional organization in sleep and suggestive of their participation in sensory processing across states. Surprisingly, TRN neurons associated with spindles in sleep are also associated with alpha oscillations during attention. As such, we propose that common thalamic circuit principles regulate sensory processing in a state-invariant manner and that in certain disorders, targeting these circuits may be a more viable therapeutic strategy than considering individual states in isolation. PMID:26778969

  10. Sensory Cortical Control of a Visually Induced Arrest Behavior via Corticotectal Projections

    PubMed Central

    Liang, Feixue; Xiong, Xiaorui R.; Zingg, Brian; Ji, Xu-ying; Zhang, Li I.; Tao, Huizhong W.

    2015-01-01

    Summary Innate defense behaviors (IDBs) evoked by threatening sensory stimuli are essential for animal survival. Although subcortical circuits are implicated in IDBs, it remains largely unclear whether sensory cortex modulates IDBs and what are the underlying neural pathways. Here, we show that optogenetic silencing of corticotectal projections from layer 5 (L5) of the mouse primary visual cortex (V1) to the superior colliculus (SC) significantly reduces a SC-dependent innate behavior, i.e. temporary suspension of locomotion upon a sudden flash of light as short as milliseconds. Surprisingly, optogenetic activation of SC-projecting neurons in V1 or their axon terminals in SC sufficiently elicits the behavior, in contrast to other major L5 corticofugal projections. Thus, via the same corticofugal projection, visual cortex not only modulates the light-induced arrest behavior, but also can directly drive the behavior. Our results suggest that sensory cortex may play a previously unrecognized role in the top-down initiation of sensory-motor behaviors. PMID:25913860

  11. Reduced Sensory Oscillatory Activity during Rapid Auditory Processing as a Correlate of Language-Learning Impairment

    PubMed Central

    Heim, Sabine; Friedman, Jennifer Thomas; Keil, Andreas; Benasich, April A.

    2010-01-01

    Successful language acquisition has been hypothesized to involve the ability to integrate rapidly presented, brief acoustic cues in sensory cortex. A body of work has suggested that this ability is compromised in language-learning impairment (LLI). The present research aimed to examine sensory integration during rapid auditory processing by means of electrophysiological measures of oscillatory brain activity using data from a larger longitudinal study. Twenty-nine children with LLI and control participants with typical language development (n=18) listened to tone doublets presented at a temporal interval that is essential for accurate speech processing (70-ms interstimulus interval). The children performed a deviant (pitch change of second tone) detection task, or listened passively. The electroencephalogram was recorded from 64 electrodes. Data were source-projected to the auditory cortices and submitted to wavelet analysis, resulting in time-frequency representations of electrocortical activity. Results show significantly reduced amplitude and phase-locking of early (45–75 ms) oscillations in the gamma-band range (29–52 Hz), specifically in the LLI group, for the second stimulus of the tone doublet. This suggests altered temporal organization of sensory oscillatory activity in LLI when processing rapid sequences. PMID:21822356

  12. Learning strategy refinement reverses early sensory cortical map expansion but not behavior: Support for a theory of directed cortical substrates of learning and memory.

    PubMed

    Elias, Gabriel A; Bieszczad, Kasia M; Weinberger, Norman M

    2015-12-01

    Primary sensory cortical fields develop highly specific associative representational plasticity, notably enlarged area of representation of reinforced signal stimuli within their topographic maps. However, overtraining subjects after they have solved an instrumental task can reduce or eliminate the expansion while the successful behavior remains. As the development of this plasticity depends on the learning strategy used to solve a task, we asked whether the loss of expansion is due to the strategy used during overtraining. Adult male rats were trained in a three-tone auditory discrimination task to bar-press to the CS+ for water reward and refrain from doing so during the CS- tones and silent intertrial intervals; errors were punished by a flashing light and time-out penalty. Groups acquired this task to a criterion within seven training sessions by relying on a strategy that was "bar-press from tone-onset-to-error signal" ("TOTE"). Three groups then received different levels of overtraining: Group ST, none; Group RT, one week; Group OT, three weeks. Post-training mapping of their primary auditory fields (A1) showed that Groups ST and RT had developed significantly expanded representational areas, specifically restricted to the frequency band of the CS+ tone. In contrast, the A1 of Group OT was no different from naïve controls. Analysis of learning strategy revealed this group had shifted strategy to a refinement of TOTE in which they self-terminated bar-presses before making an error ("iTOTE"). Across all animals, the greater the use of iTOTE, the smaller was the representation of the CS+ in A1. Thus, the loss of cortical expansion is attributable to a shift or refinement in strategy. This reversal of expansion was considered in light of a novel theoretical framework (CONCERTO) highlighting four basic principles of brain function that resolve anomalous findings and explaining why even a minor change in strategy would involve concomitant shifts of involved brain

  13. Lesions to Primary Sensory and Posterior Parietal Cortices Impair Recovery from Hand Paresis after Stroke

    PubMed Central

    Abela, Eugenio; Missimer, John; Wiest, Roland; Federspiel, Andrea; Hess, Christian; Sturzenegger, Matthias; Weder, Bruno

    2012-01-01

    Background Neuroanatomical determinants of motor skill recovery after stroke are still poorly understood. Although lesion load onto the corticospinal tract is known to affect recovery, less is known about the effect of lesions to cortical sensorimotor areas. Here, we test the hypothesis that lesions of somatosensory cortices interfere with the capacity to recover motor skills after stroke. Methods Standardized tests of motor skill and somatosensory functions were acquired longitudinally over nine months in 29 patients with stroke to the pre- and postcentral gyrus, including adjacent areas of the frontal, parietal and insular cortices. We derived the recovery trajectories of each patient for five motor subtest using least-squares curve fitting and objective model selection procedures for linear and exponential models. Patients were classified into subgroups based on their motor recovery models. Lesions were mapped onto diffusion weighted imaging scans and normalized into stereotaxic space using cost-function masking. To identify critical neuranatomical regions, voxel-wise subtractions were calculated between subgroup lesion maps. A probabilistic cytoarchitectonic atlas was used to quantify of lesion extent and location. Results Twenty-three patients with moderate to severe initial deficits showed exponential recovery trajectories for motor subtests that relied on precise distal movements. Those that retained a chronic motor deficit had lesions that extended to the center of the somatosensory cortex (area 2) and the intraparietal sulcus (areas hIP1, hIP2). Impaired recovery outcome correlated with lesion extent on this areas and somatosensory performance. The rate of recovery, however, depended on the lesion load onto the primary motor cortex (areas 4a, 4p). Conclusions Our findings support a critical role of uni-and multimodal somatosensory cortices in motor skill recovery. Whereas lesions to these areas influence recovery outcome, lesions to the primary motor

  14. Propofol Disrupts Functional Interactions between Sensory and High-Order Processing of Auditory Verbal Memory

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Xiaolin; Lauer, Kathryn K.; Ward, Barney D.; Rao, Stephen M.; Li, Shi-Jiang; Hudetz, Anthony G.

    2011-01-01

    Current theories suggest that disrupting cortical information integration may account for the mechanism of general anesthesia in suppressing consciousness. Human cognitive operations take place in hierarchically structured neural organizations in the brain. The process of low-order neural representation of sensory stimuli becoming integrated in high-order cortices is also known as cognitive binding. Combining neuroimaging, cognitive neuroscience, and anesthetic manipulation, we examined how cognitive networks involved in auditory verbal memory are maintained in wakefulness, disrupted in propofol-induced deep sedation, and re-established in recovery. Inspired by the notion of cognitive binding, an fMRI-guided connectivity analysis was utilized to assess the integrity of functional interactions within and between different levels of the task-defined brain regions. Task-related responses persisted in the primary auditory cortex (PAC), but vanished in the inferior frontal gyrus (IFG) and premotor areas in deep sedation. For connectivity analysis, seed regions representing sensory and high-order processing of the memory task were identified in the PAC and IFG. Propofol disrupted connections from the PAC seed to the frontal regions and thalamus, but not the connections from the IFG seed to a set of widely distributed brain regions in the temporal, frontal, and parietal lobes (with exception of the PAC). These later regions have been implicated in mediating verbal comprehension and memory. These results suggest that propofol disrupts cognition by blocking the projection of sensory information to high-order processing networks and thus preventing information integration. Such findings contribute to our understanding of anesthetic mechanisms as related to information and integration in the brain. PMID:21932265

  15. Cortical processing of a brightness illusion

    PubMed Central

    Roe, Anna Wang; Lu, Haidong D.; Hung, Chou P.

    2005-01-01

    Several brightness illusions indicate that borders can affect the perception of surfaces dramatically. In the Cornsweet illusion, two equiluminant surfaces appear to be different in brightness because of the contrast border between them. Here, we report the existence of cells in monkey visual cortex that respond to such an “illusory” brightness. We find that luminance responsive cells are located in color-activated regions (cytochrome oxidase blobs and bridges) of primary visual cortex (V1), whereas Cornsweet responsive cells are found preferentially in the color-activated regions (thin stripes) of second visual area (V2). This colocalization of brightness and color processing within V1 and V2 suggests a segregation of contour and surface processing in early visual pathways and a hierarchy of brightness information processing from V1 to V2 in monkeys. PMID:15738406

  16. Interaction of slow cortical rhythm with somatosensory information processing in urethane-anesthetized rats

    PubMed Central

    Toth, Attila; Gyengesi, Erika; Zaborszky, Laszlo; Detari, Laszlo

    2008-01-01

    Slow cortical rhythm (SCR) is a rhythmic alteration of active (hypopolarized), and silent (hyperpolarized) epochs in cortical cells. SCR was found to influence sensory information processing in various models, but these studies yielded inconsistent results. We examined sensory processing in anesthetized rats during SCR by recording multiple unit activity (MUA) and evoked field potentials (eFPs). Evoked field potentials as well as spontaneous FPs changes around spontaneous activations were analyzed by subsequent current source density (CSD) analysis. MUA responses and eFPs were recorded from the hindlimb area (HL) of the somatosensory cortex (SI) to electrical stimuli of the tibial nerve during active and silent states, respectively. Stimulus-associated MUA above the ongoing background activity did not differ significantly in active vs. silent states. Short latency (< 50 ms) eFP responses consisted of a sequence of deep-negative and deep-positive waves. Parameters of the first negative deflection were similar in both states. Stimulation in the silent state occasionally induced 500-700 ms long spindles in the alpha range (10-16 Hz). Spindles were never observed in responses to active state stimulation. CSD analysis showed moderately different cortical sink-source patterns when the stimulus was applied during active vs. silent state. Sinks first appeared in layer IV, V and VI, corresponding sources were in layer I/II, V and VI. Stronger activation appeared in the infraganular layers in the case of active state. CSD of spontaneous FPs revealed some sequential activation pattern in the cortex when strongest and earlier sink appeared in layer III during active states. PMID:18588861

  17. Improvements of sensorimotor processes during action cascading associated with changes in sensory processing architecture-insights from sensory deprivation.

    PubMed

    Gohil, Krutika; Hahne, Anja; Beste, Christian

    2016-01-01

    In most everyday situations sensorimotor processes are quite complex because situations often require to carry out several actions in a specific temporal order; i.e. one has to cascade different actions. While it is known that changes to stimuli affect action cascading mechanisms, it is unknown whether action cascading changes when sensory stimuli are not manipulated, but the neural architecture to process these stimuli is altered. In the current study we test this hypothesis using prelingually deaf subjects as a model to answer this question. We use a system neurophysiological approach using event-related potentials (ERPs) and source localization techniques. We show that prelingually deaf subjects show improvements in action cascading. However, this improvement is most likely not due to changes at the perceptual (P1-ERP) and attentional processing level (N1-ERP), but due to changes at the response selection level (P3-ERP). It seems that the temporo-parietal junction (TPJ) is important for these effects to occur, because the TPJ comprises overlapping networks important for the processing of sensory information and the selection of responses. Sensory deprivation thus affects cognitive processes downstream of sensory processing and only these seem to be important for behavioral improvements in situations requiring complex sensorimotor processes and action cascading. PMID:27321666

  18. Improvements of sensorimotor processes during action cascading associated with changes in sensory processing architecture–insights from sensory deprivation

    PubMed Central

    Gohil, Krutika; Hahne, Anja; Beste, Christian

    2016-01-01

    In most everyday situations sensorimotor processes are quite complex because situations often require to carry out several actions in a specific temporal order; i.e. one has to cascade different actions. While it is known that changes to stimuli affect action cascading mechanisms, it is unknown whether action cascading changes when sensory stimuli are not manipulated, but the neural architecture to process these stimuli is altered. In the current study we test this hypothesis using prelingually deaf subjects as a model to answer this question. We use a system neurophysiological approach using event-related potentials (ERPs) and source localization techniques. We show that prelingually deaf subjects show improvements in action cascading. However, this improvement is most likely not due to changes at the perceptual (P1-ERP) and attentional processing level (N1-ERP), but due to changes at the response selection level (P3-ERP). It seems that the temporo-parietal junction (TPJ) is important for these effects to occur, because the TPJ comprises overlapping networks important for the processing of sensory information and the selection of responses. Sensory deprivation thus affects cognitive processes downstream of sensory processing and only these seem to be important for behavioral improvements in situations requiring complex sensorimotor processes and action cascading. PMID:27321666

  19. Sensory Processing in Internationally Adopted, Post-Institutionalized Children

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wilbarger, Julia; Gunnar, Megan; Schneider, Mary; Pollak, Seth

    2010-01-01

    Background/Methods: Sensory processing capacities of 8-12-year-old internationally adopted (IA) children who experienced prolonged institutional care (greater than 12 months with 75% of pre-adoption lives in institutional care) prior to adoption into family environments (PI) were compared to a group of IA children who were adopted early (less than…

  20. A systematic review of sensory processing interventions for children with autism spectrum disorders.

    PubMed

    Case-Smith, Jane; Weaver, Lindy L; Fristad, Mary A

    2015-02-01

    Children with autism spectrum disorders often exhibit co-occurring sensory processing problems and receive interventions that target self-regulation. In current practice, sensory interventions apply different theoretic constructs, focus on different goals, use a variety of sensory modalities, and involve markedly disparate procedures. Previous reviews examined the effects of sensory interventions without acknowledging these inconsistencies. This systematic review examined the research evidence (2000-2012) of two forms of sensory interventions, sensory integration therapy and sensory-based intervention, for children with autism spectrum disorders and concurrent sensory processing problems. A total of 19 studies were reviewed: 5 examined the effects of sensory integration therapy and 14 sensory-based intervention. The studies defined sensory integration therapies as clinic-based interventions that use sensory-rich, child-directed activities to improve a child's adaptive responses to sensory experiences. Two randomized controlled trials found positive effects for sensory integration therapy on child performance using Goal Attainment Scaling (effect sizes ranging from .72 to 1.62); other studies (Levels III-IV) found positive effects on reducing behaviors linked to sensory problems. Sensory-based interventions are characterized as classroom-based interventions that use single-sensory strategies, for example, weighted vests or therapy balls, to influence a child's state of arousal. Few positive effects were found in sensory-based intervention studies. Studies of sensory-based interventions suggest that they may not be effective; however, they did not follow recommended protocols or target sensory processing problems. Although small randomized controlled trials resulted in positive effects for sensory integration therapies, additional rigorous trials using manualized protocols for sensory integration therapy are needed to evaluate effects for children with autism

  1. Cerebellar Processing of Sensory Inputs Primes Motor Cortex Plasticity

    PubMed Central

    Velayudhan, B.; Hubsch, C.; Pradeep, S.; Roze, E.; Vidailhet, M.; Meunier, S.; Kishore, A.

    2013-01-01

    Plasticity of the human primary motor cortex (M1) has a critical role in motor control and learning. The cerebellum facilitates these functions using sensory feedback. We investigated whether cerebellar processing of sensory afferent information influences the plasticity of the primary motor cortex (M1). Theta-burst stimulation protocols (TBS), both excitatory and inhibitory, were used to modulate the excitability of the posterior cerebellar cortex and to condition an ongoing M1 plasticity. M1 plasticity was subsequently induced in 2 different ways: by paired associative stimulation (PAS) involving sensory processing and TBS that exclusively involves intracortical circuits of M1. Cerebellar excitation attenuated the PAS-induced M1 plasticity, whereas cerebellar inhibition enhanced and prolonged it. Furthermore, cerebellar inhibition abolished the topography-specific response of PAS-induced M1 plasticity, with the effects spreading to adjacent motor maps. Conversely, cerebellar excitation had no effect on the TBS-induced M1 plasticity. This demonstrates the key role of the cerebellum in priming M1 plasticity, and we propose that it is likely to occur at the thalamic or olivo-dentate nuclear level by influencing the sensory processing. We suggest that such a cerebellar priming of M1 plasticity could shape the impending motor command by favoring or inhibiting the recruitment of several muscle representations. PMID:22351647

  2. Thermodynamic Costs of Information Processing in Sensory Adaptation

    PubMed Central

    Sartori, Pablo; Granger, Léo; Lee, Chiu Fan; Horowitz, Jordan M.

    2014-01-01

    Biological sensory systems react to changes in their surroundings. They are characterized by fast response and slow adaptation to varying environmental cues. Insofar as sensory adaptive systems map environmental changes to changes of their internal degrees of freedom, they can be regarded as computational devices manipulating information. Landauer established that information is ultimately physical, and its manipulation subject to the entropic and energetic bounds of thermodynamics. Thus the fundamental costs of biological sensory adaptation can be elucidated by tracking how the information the system has about its environment is altered. These bounds are particularly relevant for small organisms, which unlike everyday computers, operate at very low energies. In this paper, we establish a general framework for the thermodynamics of information processing in sensing. With it, we quantify how during sensory adaptation information about the past is erased, while information about the present is gathered. This process produces entropy larger than the amount of old information erased and has an energetic cost bounded by the amount of new information written to memory. We apply these principles to the E. coli's chemotaxis pathway during binary ligand concentration changes. In this regime, we quantify the amount of information stored by each methyl group and show that receptors consume energy in the range of the information-theoretic minimum. Our work provides a basis for further inquiries into more complex phenomena, such as gradient sensing and frequency response. PMID:25503948

  3. Developmental refinement of cortical systems for speech and voice processing.

    PubMed

    Bonte, Milene; Ley, Anke; Scharke, Wolfgang; Formisano, Elia

    2016-03-01

    Development typically leads to optimized and adaptive neural mechanisms for the processing of voice and speech. In this fMRI study we investigated how this adaptive processing reaches its mature efficiency by examining the effects of task, age and phonological skills on cortical responses to voice and speech in children (8-9years), adolescents (14-15years) and adults. Participants listened to vowels (/a/, /i/, /u/) spoken by different speakers (boy, girl, man) and performed delayed-match-to-sample tasks on vowel and speaker identity. Across age groups, similar behavioral accuracy and comparable sound evoked auditory cortical fMRI responses were observed. Analysis of task-related modulations indicated a developmental enhancement of responses in the (right) superior temporal cortex during the processing of speaker information. This effect was most evident through an analysis based on individually determined voice sensitive regions. Analysis of age effects indicated that the recruitment of regions in the temporal-parietal cortex and posterior cingulate/cingulate gyrus decreased with development. Beyond age-related changes, the strength of speech-evoked activity in left posterior and right middle superior temporal regions significantly scaled with individual differences in phonological skills. Together, these findings suggest a prolonged development of the cortical functional network for speech and voice processing. This development includes a progressive refinement of the neural mechanisms for the selection and analysis of auditory information relevant to the ongoing behavioral task. PMID:26777479

  4. A conserved switch in sensory processing prepares developing neocortex for vision

    PubMed Central

    Colonnese, Matthew T.; Kaminska, Anna; Minlebaev, Marat; Milh, Mathieu; Bloem, Bernard; Lescure, Sandra; Moriette, Guy; Chiron, Catherine; Ben-Ari, Yehezkel; Khazipov, Rustem

    2010-01-01

    Developing cortex generates endogenous activity that modulates the formation of functional units, but how this activity is altered to support mature function is poorly understood. Using recordings from the visual cortex of preterm human infants and neonatal rats, we report a novel “bursting” period of visual responsiveness during which the weak retinal output is amplified by endogenous network oscillations, enabling a primitive form of vision. This period ends shortly before delivery in humans and eye-opening in rodents with an abrupt switch to the mature visual response. The switch is causally linked to the emergence of an activated state of continuous cortical activity dependent on the ascending neuromodulatory systems involved in arousal. This switch is sensory-system specific but experience-independent, and also involves maturation of retinal processing. Thus the early development of visual processing is governed by a conserved, intrinsic program that switches thalamocortical response properties in anticipation of patterned vision. PMID:20696384

  5. Dynamic photophysical processes in laser irradiated human cortical skull bone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mandelis, Andreas; Kwan, Chi-Hang; Matvienko, Anna

    2009-02-01

    Modulated luminescence (LUM) technique was applied to analyze photophysical processes in the cortical layer of human skull bones. The theoretical interpretation of the results was based on the optical excitation and decay rate equations of the fluorophore and on the molecular interaction parameter with the photon field density in the matrix of the bone. Using comparisons of the theory with the frequency response of dental LUM it was concluded that the optically active molecular species (fluorophore) in the bones is hydroxyapatite. An effective relaxation lifetime of skull cortical bone was derived theoretically and was found to depend on the intrinsic fluorophore decay lifetime, on the photon field density, and on the thickness of the bone. The experimentally measured dependencies were in excellent agreement with the theoretical model. The theory was able to yield measurements of the optical scattering coefficient, optical absorption coefficient, and mean coupling coefficient. These results show that the quantitative LUM can be used as a sensitive method to measure optical properties of the active fluorophore in cortical skull bones and the optical-field-induced molecular interaction parameter. When calibrated vs. laser intensity, the modulated luminescence can also be used to measure human skull thickness. These traits can be applied to monitor the bone mineral density (BMD) and, ultimately can be used as potential markers of bone health or disease, such as osteoporosis or bone cancer.

  6. Cortical activity is more stable when sensory stimuli are consciously perceived

    PubMed Central

    Schurger, Aaron; Sarigiannidis, Ioannis; Naccache, Lionel; Sitt, Jacobo D.; Dehaene, Stanislas

    2015-01-01

    According to recent evidence, stimulus-tuned neurons in the cerebral cortex exhibit reduced variability in firing rate across trials, after the onset of a stimulus. However, in order for a reduction in variability to be directly relevant to perception and behavior, it must be realized within trial—the pattern of activity must be relatively stable. Stability is characteristic of decision states in recurrent attractor networks, and its possible relevance to conscious perception has been suggested by theorists. However, it is difficult to measure on the within-trial time scales and broadly distributed spatial scales relevant to perception. We recorded simultaneous magneto- and electroencephalography (MEG and EEG) data while subjects observed threshold-level visual stimuli. Pattern-similarity analyses applied to the data from MEG gradiometers uncovered a pronounced decrease in variability across trials after stimulus onset, consistent with previous single-unit data. This was followed by a significant divergence in variability depending upon subjective report (seen/unseen), with seen trials exhibiting less variability. Applying the same analysis across time, within trial, we found that the latter effect coincided in time with a difference in the stability of the pattern of activity. Stability alone could be used to classify data from individual trials as “seen” or “unseen.” The same metric applied to EEG data from patients with disorders of consciousness exposed to auditory stimuli diverged parametrically according to clinically diagnosed level of consciousness. Differences in signal strength could not account for these results. Conscious perception may involve the transient stabilization of distributed cortical networks, corresponding to a global brain-scale decision. PMID:25847997

  7. The ipsilateral cortico-cortical connexions between the cytoarchitectonic subdivisions of the primary somatic sensory cortex in the monkey.

    PubMed

    Shanks, M F; Pearson, R C; Powell, T P

    1985-04-01

    The ipsilateral cortico-cortical connexions passing between the architectonic subdivisions of the primary somatic sensory cortex, S1, of the monkey have been studied with axonal degeneration methods after the placement of small lesions. All architectonic subdivisions except area 3a, and all the topographic representations, have been involved by the lesions. The degeneration of local intracortical fibres has the same features that have been described in other cortical areas: dense terminal degeneration for about 200 micron immediately around the lesion and moderate degeneration extending for a few millimetres with that in layers I, IV and the deep part of V being the most marked and reaching furthest; the degeneration extends further in the antero-posterior than in the medio-lateral dimension, and further posteriorly than anteriorly. The arrangement of the intercortical fibre connexions varies with the architectonic subdivision and with the topographic representation, and as in other sensory areas these fibres may be considered as either feed-forward or feed-back. The feed-forward projections are heavy, terminate in all layers of the cortex but mainly in layer IV and the deep part of layer III, whereas the feed-back connexions are lighter and end in layers I, II, the superficial part of layer III and in layers V and VI. In the antero-posterior dimension, feed-forward fibres from area 3b go to areas 3a, 1 and 2; area 1 sends feed-forward connexions to areas 3a and 2 and feed-back to area 3b; area 2 sends a feed-forward projection to area 3a and feed-back to areas 3b and 1; all areas also send fibres to area 5. A lesion in one of the architectonic subdivisions in the trunk and face representations results in degeneration throughout the antero-posterior extent of S1, but after damage within an architectonic area in the distal limb regions, there are foci of degeneration in the middle of the antero-posterior extents of the other areas but with little or none at the

  8. Steady-state evoked potentials to tag specific components of nociceptive cortical processing.

    PubMed

    Colon, Elisabeth; Nozaradan, Sylvie; Legrain, Valery; Mouraux, André

    2012-03-01

    Studies have shown that the periodic repetition of a stimulus induces, at certain stimulation frequencies, a sustained electro-cortical response of corresponding frequency, referred to as steady-state evoked potential (SSEP). Using infrared laser stimulation, we recently showed that SSEPs can be used to explore nociceptive cortical processing. Here, we implemented a novel approach to elicit such responses, using a periodic intra-epidermal electrical stimulation of cutaneous Aδ-nociceptors (Aδ-SSEPs). Using a wide range of frequencies (3-43 Hz), we compared the scalp topographies and temporal dynamics of these Aδ-SSEPs to the Aβ-SSEPs elicited by non-nociceptive transcutaneous electrical stimulation, as well as to the transient ERPs elicited by the onsets of the 10-s stimulation trains, applied to the left and right hand. At 3 Hz, we found that the topographies of Aβ- and Aδ-SSEPs were both maximal at the scalp vertex, and resembled closely that of the late P2 wave of transient ERPs, suggesting activity originating from the same neuronal populations. The responses also showed marked habituation, suggesting that they were mainly related to unspecific, attention-related processes. In contrast, at frequencies >3 Hz, the topographies of Aβ- and Aδ-SSEPs were markedly different. Aβ-SSEPs were maximal over the contralateral parietal region, whereas Aδ-SSEPs were maximal over midline frontal regions, thus indicating an entrainment of distinct neuronal populations. Furthermore, the responses showed no habituation, suggesting more obligatory and specific stages of sensory processing. Taken together, our results indicate that Aβ- and Aδ-SSEPs offer a unique opportunity to study the cortical representation of nociception and touch. PMID:22197788

  9. Dissociation of motor and sensory inhibition processes in normal aging

    PubMed Central

    Anguera, Joaquin A.; Gazzaley, Adam

    2011-01-01

    Objective Age-related cognitive impairments have been attributed to deficits in inhibitory processes that mediate both motor restraint and sensory filtering. However, behavioral studies have failed to show an association between tasks that measure these distinct types of inhibition. In the present study, we hypothesized neural markers reflecting each type of inhibition may reveal a relationship across inhibitory domains in older adults. Methods Electroencephalography (EEG) and behavioral measures were used to explore whether there was an across-participant correlation between sensory suppression and motor inhibition. Sixteen healthy older adult participants (65-80 years) engaged in two separate experimental paradigms: a selective attention, delayed-recognition task and a stop-signal task. Results Findings revealed no significant relationship existed between neural markers of sensory suppression (P1 amplitude; N170 latency) and markers of motor inhibition (N2 and P3 amplitude and latency) in older adults. Conclusions These distinct inhibitory domains are differentially impacted in normal aging, as evidenced by previous behavioral work and the current neural findings. Thus a generalized inhibitory deficit may not be a common impairment in cognitive aging. Significance Given that some theories of cognitive aging suggest age-related failure of inhibitory mechanisms may span different modalities, the present findings contribute to an alternative view where age-related declines within each inhibitory modality are unrelated. PMID:21963321

  10. Sound-induced enhancement of low-intensity vision: Multisensory influences on human sensory-specific cortices and thalamic bodies relate to perceptual enhancement of visual detection sensitivity

    PubMed Central

    Noesselt, Toemme; Tyll, Sascha; Boehler, Carsten Nicolas; Budinger, Eike; Heinze, Hans-Jochen; Driver, Jon

    2010-01-01

    Combining information across modalities can affect sensory performance. We studied how co-occurring sounds modulate behavioral visual detection sensitivity (d’), and neural responses, for visual stimuli of higher or lower intensity. Co-occurrence of a sound enhanced human detection sensitivity for lower- but not higher-intensity visual targets. fMRI linked this to boosts in activity-levels for sensory-specific visual and auditory cortex, plus multisensory superior temporal sulcus (STS), specifically for a lower-intensity visual event when paired with a sound. Thalamic structures in visual and auditory pathways, the lateral and medial geniculate bodies respectively (LGB, MGB) showed a similar pattern. Subject-by-subject psychophysical benefits correlated with corresponding fMRI-signals in visual, auditory and multisensory regions. We also analysed differential ‘coupling’ patterns of LGB and MGB with other regions in the different experimental conditions. Effective-connectivity analyses showed enhanced coupling of sensory-specific thalamic bodies with the affected cortical sites during enhanced detection of lower-intensity visual events paired with sounds. Coupling strength between visual and auditory thalamus with cortical regions, including STS, co-varied parametrically with the psychophysical benefit for this specific multisensory context. Our results indicate that multisensory enhancement of detection sensitivity for low-contrast visual stimuli by co-occurring sounds reflects a brain network involving not only established multisensory STS and sensory-specific cortex, but also visual and auditory thalamus. PMID:20943902

  11. Facilitated early cortical processing of nude human bodies.

    PubMed

    Alho, Jussi; Salminen, Nelli; Sams, Mikko; Hietanen, Jari K; Nummenmaa, Lauri

    2015-07-01

    Functional brain imaging has identified specialized neural systems supporting human body perception. Responses to nude vs. clothed bodies within this system are amplified. However, it remains unresolved whether nude and clothed bodies are processed by same cerebral networks or whether processing of nude bodies recruits additional affective and arousal processing areas. We recorded simultaneous MEG and EEG while participants viewed photographs of clothed and nude bodies. Global field power revealed a peak ∼145ms after stimulus onset to both clothed and nude bodies, and ∼205ms exclusively to nude bodies. Nude-body-sensitive responses were centered first (100-200ms) in the extrastriate and fusiform body areas, and subsequently (200-300ms) in affective-motivational areas including insula and anterior cingulate cortex. We conclude that visibility of sexual features facilitates early cortical processing of human bodies, the purpose of which is presumably to trigger sexual behavior and ultimately ensure reproduction. PMID:25960070

  12. Asperger Syndrome and Sensory Processing: A Conceptual Model and Guidance for Intervention Planning.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Dunn, Winnie; Saiter, Jessica; Rinner, Louann

    2002-01-01

    This article discusses sensory processing concepts and their application to children with Asperger syndrome (AS). Basic characteristics of the sensory systems are outlined, a model for sensory processing is described, and a summary of data supporting the model in work with children with AS is presented. Case studies are included. (Contains…

  13. A Comparison of Patterns of Sensory Processing in Children with and without Developmental Disabilities

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Cheung, Phoebe P. P.; Siu, Andrew M. H.

    2009-01-01

    This study compared the patterns of sensory processing among children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD), attention deficit and hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), and children without disabilities. Parents reported on the frequency of sensory processing issues by completing the Chinese Sensory Profile (CSP). Children with disabilities (ASD or ADHD)…

  14. Cross-Modality Sharpening of Visual Cortical Processing through Layer-1-Mediated Inhibition and Disinhibition.

    PubMed

    Ibrahim, Leena A; Mesik, Lukas; Ji, Xu-Ying; Fang, Qi; Li, Hai-Fu; Li, Ya-Tang; Zingg, Brian; Zhang, Li I; Tao, Huizhong Whit

    2016-03-01

    Cross-modality interaction in sensory perception is advantageous for animals' survival. How cortical sensory processing is cross-modally modulated and what are the underlying neural circuits remain poorly understood. In mouse primary visual cortex (V1), we discovered that orientation selectivity of layer (L)2/3, but not L4, excitatory neurons was sharpened in the presence of sound or optogenetic activation of projections from primary auditory cortex (A1) to V1. The effect was manifested by decreased average visual responses yet increased responses at the preferred orientation. It was more pronounced at lower visual contrast and was diminished by suppressing L1 activity. L1 neurons were strongly innervated by A1-V1 axons and excited by sound, while visual responses of L2/L3 vasoactive intestinal peptide (VIP) neurons were suppressed by sound, both preferentially at the cell's preferred orientation. These results suggest that the cross-modality modulation is achieved primarily through L1 neuron- and L2/L3 VIP-cell-mediated inhibitory and disinhibitory circuits. PMID:26898778

  15. Loss of promoter IV-driven BDNF expression impacts oscillatory activity during sleep, sensory information processing and fear regulation.

    PubMed

    Hill, J L; Hardy, N F; Jimenez, D V; Maynard, K R; Kardian, A S; Pollock, C J; Schloesser, R J; Martinowich, K

    2016-01-01

    Posttraumatic stress disorder is characterized by hyperarousal, sensory processing impairments, sleep disturbances and altered fear regulation; phenotypes associated with changes in brain oscillatory activity. Molecules associated with activity-dependent plasticity, including brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), may regulate neural oscillations by controlling synaptic activity. BDNF synthesis includes production of multiple Bdnf transcripts, which contain distinct 5' noncoding exons. We assessed arousal, sensory processing, fear regulation and sleep in animals where BDNF expression from activity-dependent promoter IV is disrupted (Bdnf-e4 mice). Bdnf-e4 mice display sensory hyper-reactivity and impaired electrophysiological correlates of sensory information processing as measured by event-related potentials (ERP). Utilizing electroencephalogram, we identified a decrease in slow-wave activity during non-rapid eye movement sleep, suggesting impaired sleep homeostasis. Fear extinction is controlled by hippocampal-prefrontal cortical BDNF signaling, and neurophysiological communication patterns between the hippocampus (HPC) and medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC) correlate with behavioral performance during extinction. Impaired fear extinction in Bdnf-e4 mice is accompanied by increased HPC activation and decreased HPC-mPFC theta phase synchrony during early extinction, as well as increased mPFC activation during extinction recall. These results suggest that activity-dependent BDNF signaling is critical for regulating oscillatory activity, which may contribute to altered behavior. PMID:27552586

  16. Gravity receptors - An ultrastructural basis for peripheral sensory processing

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ross, M. D.; Donovan, K.

    1984-01-01

    The present ultrastructural study of serial sections has shown that type II hair cells of the anterior part of the utricular macula are integrated into the afferent neural circuitry of type I cells, which are arranged in clusters. Additionally, there exists a complex system of intramacularly originating efferent-type nerve fibers and terminals. The findings, taken together, suggest that on morphological grounds, complex processing of sensory information occurs in gravity receptors. Asymmetry of such a complex system may contribute to motion and space-motion sickness.

  17. General Anesthetic Conditions Induce Network Synchrony and Disrupt Sensory Processing in the Cortex.

    PubMed

    Lissek, Thomas; Obenhaus, Horst A; Ditzel, Désirée A W; Nagai, Takeharu; Miyawaki, Atsushi; Sprengel, Rolf; Hasan, Mazahir T

    2016-01-01

    General anesthetics are commonly used in animal models to study how sensory signals are represented in the brain. Here, we used two-photon (2P) calcium activity imaging with cellular resolution to investigate how neuronal activity in layer 2/3 of the mouse barrel cortex is modified under the influence of different concentrations of chemically distinct general anesthetics. Our results show that a high isoflurane dose induces synchrony in local neuronal networks and these cortical activity patterns closely resemble those observed in EEG recordings under deep anesthesia. Moreover, ketamine and urethane also induced similar activity patterns. While investigating the effects of deep isoflurane anesthesia on whisker and auditory evoked responses in the barrel cortex, we found that dedicated spatial regions for sensory signal processing become disrupted. We propose that our isoflurane-2P imaging paradigm can serve as an attractive model system to dissect cellular and molecular mechanisms that induce the anesthetic state, and it might also provide important insight into sleep-like brain states and consciousness. PMID:27147963

  18. General Anesthetic Conditions Induce Network Synchrony and Disrupt Sensory Processing in the Cortex

    PubMed Central

    Lissek, Thomas; Obenhaus, Horst A.; Ditzel, Désirée A. W.; Nagai, Takeharu; Miyawaki, Atsushi; Sprengel, Rolf; Hasan, Mazahir T.

    2016-01-01

    General anesthetics are commonly used in animal models to study how sensory signals are represented in the brain. Here, we used two-photon (2P) calcium activity imaging with cellular resolution to investigate how neuronal activity in layer 2/3 of the mouse barrel cortex is modified under the influence of different concentrations of chemically distinct general anesthetics. Our results show that a high isoflurane dose induces synchrony in local neuronal networks and these cortical activity patterns closely resemble those observed in EEG recordings under deep anesthesia. Moreover, ketamine and urethane also induced similar activity patterns. While investigating the effects of deep isoflurane anesthesia on whisker and auditory evoked responses in the barrel cortex, we found that dedicated spatial regions for sensory signal processing become disrupted. We propose that our isoflurane-2P imaging paradigm can serve as an attractive model system to dissect cellular and molecular mechanisms that induce the anesthetic state, and it might also provide important insight into sleep-like brain states and consciousness. PMID:27147963

  19. A quantitative comparison of the hemispheric, areal, and laminar origins of sensory and motor cortical projections to the superior colliculus of the cat.

    PubMed

    Butler, Blake E; Chabot, Nicole; Lomber, Stephen G

    2016-09-01

    The superior colliculus (SC) is a midbrain structure central to orienting behaviors. The organization of descending projections from sensory cortices to the SC has garnered much attention; however, rarely have projections from multiple modalities been quantified and contrasted, allowing for meaningful conclusions within a single species. Here, we examine corticotectal projections from visual, auditory, somatosensory, motor, and limbic cortices via retrograde pathway tracers injected throughout the superficial and deep layers of the cat SC. As anticipated, the majority of cortical inputs to the SC originate in the visual cortex. In fact, each field implicated in visual orienting behavior makes a substantial projection. Conversely, only one area of the auditory orienting system, the auditory field of the anterior ectosylvian sulcus (fAES), and no area involved in somatosensory orienting, shows significant corticotectal inputs. Although small relative to visual inputs, the projection from the fAES is of particular interest, as it represents the only bilateral cortical input to the SC. This detailed, quantitative study allows for comparison across modalities in an animal that serves as a useful model for both auditory and visual perception. Moreover, the differences in patterns of corticotectal projections between modalities inform the ways in which orienting systems are modulated by cortical feedback. J. Comp. Neurol. 524:2623-2642, 2016. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. PMID:26850989

  20. Sensory Processing in Low-Functioning Adults with Autism Spectrum Disorder: Distinct Sensory Profiles and Their Relationships with Behavioral Dysfunction.

    PubMed

    Gonthier, Corentin; Longuépée, Lucie; Bouvard, Martine

    2016-09-01

    Sensory processing abnormalities are relatively universal in individuals with autism spectrum disorder, and can be very disabling. Surprisingly, very few studies have investigated these abnormalities in low-functioning adults with autism. The goals of the present study were (a) to characterize distinct profiles of sensory dysfunction, and (b) to understand how sensory dysfunction relates to behavioral disorders in this population. Data were collected for a representative sample of inpatients in autism care centers (N = 148) and a non-clinical control group. Results demonstrated that sensory dysfunction (a) is highly prevalent in low-functioning adults with ASD and differentiates at least four sub-profiles of patients, and (b) predicts specific patterns of behavioral disorders. Implications for care are discussed. PMID:27364513

  1. Altered processing of sensory stimuli in patients with migraine.

    PubMed

    de Tommaso, Marina; Ambrosini, Anna; Brighina, Filippo; Coppola, Gianluca; Perrotta, Armando; Pierelli, Francesco; Sandrini, Giorgio; Valeriani, Massimiliano; Marinazzo, Daniele; Stramaglia, Sebastiano; Schoenen, Jean

    2014-03-01

    Migraine is a cyclic disorder, in which functional and morphological brain changes fluctuate over time, culminating periodically in an attack. In the migrainous brain, temporal processing of external stimuli and sequential recruitment of neuronal networks are often dysfunctional. These changes reflect complex CNS dysfunction patterns. Assessment of multimodal evoked potentials and nociceptive reflex responses can reveal altered patterns of the brain's electrophysiological activity, thereby aiding our understanding of the pathophysiology of migraine. In this Review, we summarize the most important findings on temporal processing of evoked and reflex responses in migraine. Considering these data, we propose that thalamocortical dysrhythmia may be responsible for the altered synchronicity in migraine. To test this hypothesis in future research, electrophysiological recordings should be combined with neuroimaging studies so that the temporal patterns of sensory processing in patients with migraine can be correlated with the accompanying anatomical and functional changes. PMID:24535465

  2. A Systematic Review of Sensory Processing Interventions for Children with Autism Spectrum Disorders

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Case-Smith, Jane; Weaver, Lindy L.; Fristad, Mary A.

    2015-01-01

    Children with autism spectrum disorders often exhibit co-occurring sensory processing problems and receive interventions that target self-regulation. In current practice, sensory interventions apply different theoretic constructs, focus on different goals, use a variety of sensory modalities, and involve markedly disparate procedures. Previous…

  3. Analysis and modeling of neural processes underlying sensory preconditioning.

    PubMed

    Matsumoto, Yukihisa; Hirashima, Daisuke; Mizunami, Makoto

    2013-03-01

    Sensory preconditioning (SPC) is a procedure to demonstrate learning to associate between relatively neutral sensory stimuli in the absence of an external reinforcing stimulus, the underlying neural mechanisms of which have remained obscure. We address basic questions about neural processes underlying SPC, including whether neurons that mediate reward or punishment signals in reinforcement learning participate in association between neutral sensory stimuli. In crickets, we have suggested that octopaminergic (OA-ergic) or dopaminergic (DA-ergic) neurons participate in memory acquisition and retrieval in appetitive or aversive conditioning, respectively. Crickets that had been trained to associate an odor (CS2) with a visual pattern (CS1) (phase 1) and then to associate CS1 with water reward or quinine punishment (phase 2) exhibited a significantly increased or decreased preference for CS2 that had never been paired with the US, demonstrating successful SPC. Injection of an OA or DA receptor antagonist at different phases of the SPC training and testing showed that OA-ergic or DA-ergic neurons do not participate in learning of CS2-CS1 association in phase 1, but that OA-ergic neurons participate in learning in phase 2 and memory retrieval after appetitive SPC training. We also obtained evidence suggesting that association between CS2 and US, which should underlie conditioned response of crickets to CS2, is formed in phase 2, contrary to the standard theory of SPC assuming that it occurs in the final test. We propose models of SPC to account for these findings, by extending our model of classical conditioning. PMID:23380289

  4. Auditory midbrain processing is differentially modulated by auditory and visual cortices: An auditory fMRI study.

    PubMed

    Gao, Patrick P; Zhang, Jevin W; Fan, Shu-Juan; Sanes, Dan H; Wu, Ed X

    2015-12-01

    The cortex contains extensive descending projections, yet the impact of cortical input on brainstem processing remains poorly understood. In the central auditory system, the auditory cortex contains direct and indirect pathways (via brainstem cholinergic cells) to nuclei of the auditory midbrain, called the inferior colliculus (IC). While these projections modulate auditory processing throughout the IC, single neuron recordings have samples from only a small fraction of cells during stimulation of the corticofugal pathway. Furthermore, assessments of cortical feedback have not been extended to sensory modalities other than audition. To address these issues, we devised blood-oxygen-level-dependent (BOLD) functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) paradigms to measure the sound-evoked responses throughout the rat IC and investigated the effects of bilateral ablation of either auditory or visual cortices. Auditory cortex ablation increased the gain of IC responses to noise stimuli (primarily in the central nucleus of the IC) and decreased response selectivity to forward species-specific vocalizations (versus temporally reversed ones, most prominently in the external cortex of the IC). In contrast, visual cortex ablation decreased the gain and induced a much smaller effect on response selectivity. The results suggest that auditory cortical projections normally exert a large-scale and net suppressive influence on specific IC subnuclei, while visual cortical projections provide a facilitatory influence. Meanwhile, auditory cortical projections enhance the midbrain response selectivity to species-specific vocalizations. We also probed the role of the indirect cholinergic projections in the auditory system in the descending modulation process by pharmacologically blocking muscarinic cholinergic receptors. This manipulation did not affect the gain of IC responses but significantly reduced the response selectivity to vocalizations. The results imply that auditory cortical

  5. Prefrontal cortical minicolumn: from executive control to disrupted cognitive processing

    PubMed Central

    Casanova, Manuel F.

    2014-01-01

    The prefrontal cortex of the primate brain has a modular architecture based on the aggregation of neurons in minicolumnar arrangements having afferent and efferent connections distributed across many brain regions to represent, select and/or maintain behavioural goals and executive commands. Prefrontal cortical microcircuits are assumed to play a key role in the perception to action cycle that integrates relevant information about environment, and then selects and enacts behavioural responses. Thus, neurons within the interlaminar microcircuits participate in various functional states requiring the integration of signals across cortical layers and the selection of executive variables. Recent research suggests that executive abilities emerge from cortico-cortical interactions between interlaminar prefrontal cortical microcircuits, whereas their disruption is involved in a broad spectrum of neurologic and psychiatric disorders such as autism, schizophrenia, Alzheimer’s and drug addiction. The focus of this review is on the structural, functional and pathological approaches involving cortical minicolumns. Based on recent technological progress it has been demonstrated that microstimulation of infragranular cortical layers with patterns of microcurrents derived from supragranular layers led to an increase in cognitive performance. This suggests that interlaminar prefrontal cortical microcircuits are playing a causal role in improving cognitive performance. An important reason for the new interest in cortical modularity comes from both the impressive progress in understanding anatomical, physiological and pathological facets of cortical microcircuits and the promise of neural prosthetics for patients with neurological and psychiatric disorders. PMID:24531625

  6. Disentangling Early Sensory Information Processing Deficits in Schizophrenia

    PubMed Central

    Rissling, Anthony J.; Braff, David L.; Swerdlow, Neal R.; Hellemann, Gerhard; Rassovsky, Yuri; Sprock, Joyce; Pela, Marlena; Light, Gregory A.

    2012-01-01

    Objective The disentangling of early sensory information processing deficits and examination of their relationships to demographic and clinical factors are important steps for the validation of potential biomarkers and/or endophenotypes of schizophrenia. The aims of the present study were to characterize commonly used sensory event-related potential deficits, to determine whether they are 1) distinct from one another and 2) independently associated with important clinical characteristics. Methods MMN, P3a and RON event-related potentials (ERP) were recorded from schizophrenia patients (SZ; n=429) and nonpsychiatric comparison subjects (NCS; n=286). Subgroup analyses on demographic and clinical variables were performed. Results Schizophrenia patients exhibited robust ERP deficits at frontocentral electrodes (MMN: d=1.10; P3a: d=0.87; RON: d=0.77), consistent with previous studies. Each ERP component uniquely accounted for variance in amplitude and schizophrenia deficits. Amplitude reductions occurred with increasing age in both NCS and SZ patients. A small subset of patients prescribed combinations of 1st and 2nd generation antipsychotics exhibited significantly reduced MMN amplitude relative to other medication-defined subgroups. Conclusions MMN, P3a, and RON are dissociable deficits with distinct relationships to age and medication status in schizophrenia patients, potentially reflecting divergent pathophysiological processes. Reduced MMN in patients taking multiple antipsychotic medications appear to be attributable to greater severity of symptoms and functional impairments, rather than a medication effect. Significance Independent information processing deficits in schizophrenia patients may differentially contribute to the commonly observed deficits in neurocognitive and psychosocial functioning. PMID:22608970

  7. Simulating Cortical Feedback Modulation as Changes in Excitation and Inhibition in a Cortical Circuit Model

    PubMed Central

    Murray, John D.; McCormick, David A.

    2016-01-01

    Abstract Cortical feedback pathways are hypothesized to distribute context-dependent signals during flexible behavior. Recent experimental work has attempted to understand the mechanisms by which cortical feedback inputs modulate their target regions. Within the mouse whisker sensorimotor system, cortical feedback stimulation modulates spontaneous activity and sensory responsiveness, leading to enhanced sensory representations. However, the cellular mechanisms underlying these effects are currently unknown. In this study we use a simplified neural circuit model, which includes two recurrent excitatory populations and global inhibition, to simulate cortical modulation. First, we demonstrate how changes in the strengths of excitation and inhibition alter the input–output processing responses of our model. Second, we compare these responses with experimental findings from cortical feedback stimulation. Our analyses predict that enhanced inhibition underlies the changes in spontaneous and sensory evoked activity observed experimentally. More generally, these analyses provide a framework for relating cellular and synaptic properties to emergent circuit function and dynamic modulation. PMID:27595137

  8. Simulating Cortical Feedback Modulation as Changes in Excitation and Inhibition in a Cortical Circuit Model.

    PubMed

    Zagha, Edward; Murray, John D; McCormick, David A

    2016-01-01

    Cortical feedback pathways are hypothesized to distribute context-dependent signals during flexible behavior. Recent experimental work has attempted to understand the mechanisms by which cortical feedback inputs modulate their target regions. Within the mouse whisker sensorimotor system, cortical feedback stimulation modulates spontaneous activity and sensory responsiveness, leading to enhanced sensory representations. However, the cellular mechanisms underlying these effects are currently unknown. In this study we use a simplified neural circuit model, which includes two recurrent excitatory populations and global inhibition, to simulate cortical modulation. First, we demonstrate how changes in the strengths of excitation and inhibition alter the input-output processing responses of our model. Second, we compare these responses with experimental findings from cortical feedback stimulation. Our analyses predict that enhanced inhibition underlies the changes in spontaneous and sensory evoked activity observed experimentally. More generally, these analyses provide a framework for relating cellular and synaptic properties to emergent circuit function and dynamic modulation. PMID:27595137

  9. Sensory Processing in Preterm Preschoolers and Its Association with Executive Function

    PubMed Central

    Adams, Jenna N.; Feldman, Heidi M.; Huffman, Lynne C.; Loe, Irene M.

    2015-01-01

    Background Symptoms of abnormal sensory processing have been related to preterm birth, but have not yet been studied specifically in preterm preschoolers. The degree of association between sensory processing and other domains is important for understanding the role of sensory processing symptoms in the development of preterm children. Aims To test two related hypotheses: (1) preterm preschoolers have more sensory processing symptoms than full term preschoolers and (2) sensory processing is associated with both executive function and adaptive function in preterm preschoolers. Study Design Cross-sectional study Subjects Preterm children (≤34 weeks of gestation; n = 54) and full term controls (≥37 weeks of gestation; n = 73) ages 3-5 years. Outcome Measures Sensory processing was assessed with the Short Sensory Profile. Executive function was assessed with (1) parent ratings on the Behavior Rating Inventory of Executive Function- Preschool version and (2) a performance-based battery of tasks. Adaptive function was assessed with the Vineland Adaptive Behavior Scales-II. Results Preterm preschoolers showed significantly more sensory symptoms than full term controls. A higher percentage of preterm than full term preschoolers had elevated numbers of sensory symptoms (37% vs. 12%). Sensory symptoms in preterm preschoolers were associated with scores on executive function measures, but were not significantly associated with adaptive function. Conclusions Preterm preschoolers exhibited more sensory symptoms than full term controls. Preterm preschoolers with elevated numbers of sensory symptoms also showed executive function impairment. Future research should further examine whether sensory processing and executive function should be considered independent or overlapping constructs. PMID:25706317

  10. Predictions interact with missing sensory evidence in semantic processing areas.

    PubMed

    Scharinger, Mathias; Bendixen, Alexandra; Herrmann, Björn; Henry, Molly J; Mildner, Toralf; Obleser, Jonas

    2016-02-01

    Human brain function draws on predictive mechanisms that exploit higher-level context during lower-level perception. These mechanisms are particularly relevant for situations in which sensory information is compromised or incomplete, as for example in natural speech where speech segments may be omitted due to sluggish articulation. Here, we investigate which brain areas support the processing of incomplete words that were predictable from semantic context, compared with incomplete words that were unpredictable. During functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), participants heard sentences that orthogonally varied in predictability (semantically predictable vs. unpredictable) and completeness (complete vs. incomplete, i.e. missing their final consonant cluster). The effects of predictability and completeness interacted in heteromodal semantic processing areas, including left angular gyrus and left precuneus, where activity did not differ between complete and incomplete words when they were predictable. The same regions showed stronger activity for incomplete than for complete words when they were unpredictable. The interaction pattern suggests that for highly predictable words, the speech signal does not need to be complete for neural processing in semantic processing areas. Hum Brain Mapp 37:704-716, 2016. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. PMID:26583355

  11. Assessment of anodal and cathodal transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) on MMN-indexed auditory sensory processing.

    PubMed

    Impey, Danielle; de la Salle, Sara; Knott, Verner

    2016-06-01

    Transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) is a non-invasive form of brain stimulation which uses a very weak constant current to temporarily excite (anodal stimulation) or inhibit (cathodal stimulation) activity in the brain area of interest via small electrodes placed on the scalp. Currently, tDCS of the frontal cortex is being used as a tool to investigate cognition in healthy controls and to improve symptoms in neurological and psychiatric patients. tDCS has been found to facilitate cognitive performance on measures of attention, memory, and frontal-executive functions. Recently, a short session of anodal tDCS over the temporal lobe has been shown to increase auditory sensory processing as indexed by the Mismatch Negativity (MMN) event-related potential (ERP). This preliminary pilot study examined the separate and interacting effects of both anodal and cathodal tDCS on MMN-indexed auditory pitch discrimination. In a randomized, double blind design, the MMN was assessed before (baseline) and after tDCS (2mA, 20min) in 2 separate sessions, one involving 'sham' stimulation (the device is turned off), followed by anodal stimulation (to temporarily excite cortical activity locally), and one involving cathodal stimulation (to temporarily decrease cortical activity locally), followed by anodal stimulation. Results demonstrated that anodal tDCS over the temporal cortex increased MMN-indexed auditory detection of pitch deviance, and while cathodal tDCS decreased auditory discrimination in baseline-stratified groups, subsequent anodal stimulation did not significantly alter MMN amplitudes. These findings strengthen the position that tDCS effects on cognition extend to the neural processing of sensory input and raise the possibility that this neuromodulatory technique may be useful for investigating sensory processing deficits in clinical populations. PMID:27054908

  12. Cortical substrates and functional correlates of auditory deviance processing deficits in schizophrenia

    PubMed Central

    Rissling, Anthony J.; Miyakoshi, Makoto; Sugar, Catherine A.; Braff, David L.; Makeig, Scott; Light, Gregory A.

    2014-01-01

    Although sensory processing abnormalities contribute to widespread cognitive and psychosocial impairments in schizophrenia (SZ) patients, scalp-channel measures of averaged event-related potentials (ERPs) mix contributions from distinct cortical source-area generators, diluting the functional relevance of channel-based ERP measures. SZ patients (n = 42) and non-psychiatric comparison subjects (n = 47) participated in a passive auditory duration oddball paradigm, eliciting a triphasic (Deviant−Standard) tone ERP difference complex, here termed the auditory deviance response (ADR), comprised of a mid-frontal mismatch negativity (MMN), P3a positivity, and re-orienting negativity (RON) peak sequence. To identify its cortical sources and to assess possible relationships between their response contributions and clinical SZ measures, we applied independent component analysis to the continuous 68-channel EEG data and clustered the resulting independent components (ICs) across subjects on spectral, ERP, and topographic similarities. Six IC clusters centered in right superior temporal, right inferior frontal, ventral mid-cingulate, anterior cingulate, medial orbitofrontal, and dorsal mid-cingulate cortex each made triphasic response contributions. Although correlations between measures of SZ clinical, cognitive, and psychosocial functioning and standard (Fz) scalp-channel ADR peak measures were weak or absent, for at least four IC clusters one or more significant correlations emerged. In particular, differences in MMN peak amplitude in the right superior temporal IC cluster accounted for 48% of the variance in SZ-subject performance on tasks necessary for real-world functioning and medial orbitofrontal cluster P3a amplitude accounted for 40%/54% of SZ-subject variance in positive/negative symptoms. Thus, source-resolved auditory deviance response measures including MMN may be highly sensitive to SZ clinical, cognitive, and functional characteristics. PMID:25379456

  13. The importance of sensory integration processes for action cascading.

    PubMed

    Gohil, Krutika; Stock, Ann-Kathrin; Beste, Christian

    2015-01-01

    Dual tasking or action cascading is essential in everyday life and often investigated using tasks presenting stimuli in different sensory modalities. Findings obtained with multimodal tasks are often broadly generalized, but until today, it has remained unclear whether multimodal integration affects performance in action cascading or the underlying neurophysiology. To bridge this gap, we asked healthy young adults to complete a stop-change paradigm which presented different stimuli in either one or two modalities while recording behavioral and neurophysiological data. Bimodal stimulus presentation prolonged response times and affected bottom-up and top-down guided attentional processes as reflected by the P1 and N1, respectively. However, the most important effect was the modulation of response selection processes reflected by the P3 suggesting that a potentially different way of forming task goals operates during action cascading in bimodal vs. unimodal tasks. When two modalities are involved, separate task goals need to be formed while a conjoint task goal may be generated when all stimuli are presented in the same modality. On a systems level, these processes seem to be related to the modulation of activity in fronto-polar regions (BA10) as well as Broca's area (BA44). PMID:25820681

  14. The importance of sensory integration processes for action cascading

    PubMed Central

    Gohil, Krutika; Stock, Ann-Kathrin; Beste, Christian

    2015-01-01

    Dual tasking or action cascading is essential in everyday life and often investigated using tasks presenting stimuli in different sensory modalities. Findings obtained with multimodal tasks are often broadly generalized, but until today, it has remained unclear whether multimodal integration affects performance in action cascading or the underlying neurophysiology. To bridge this gap, we asked healthy young adults to complete a stop-change paradigm which presented different stimuli in either one or two modalities while recording behavioral and neurophysiological data. Bimodal stimulus presentation prolonged response times and affected bottom-up and top-down guided attentional processes as reflected by the P1 and N1, respectively. However, the most important effect was the modulation of response selection processes reflected by the P3 suggesting that a potentially different way of forming task goals operates during action cascading in bimodal vs. unimodal tasks. When two modalities are involved, separate task goals need to be formed while a conjoint task goal may be generated when all stimuli are presented in the same modality. On a systems level, these processes seem to be related to the modulation of activity in fronto-polar regions (BA10) as well as Broca's area (BA44). PMID:25820681

  15. Functional Brain Imaging of Multi-sensory Vestibular Processing during Computerized Dynamic Posturography using Near-Infrared Spectroscopy

    PubMed Central

    Karim, Helmet; Fuhrman, Susan I; Sparto, Patrick; Furman, Joseph; Huppert, Theodore

    2013-01-01

    Functional near-infrared spectroscopy (fNIRS) is a non-invasive brain imaging method that uses light to record regional changes in cerebral blood flow in the cortex during activation. FNIRS uses portable wearable sensors to allow measurements of brain activation during tasking. In this study, fNIRS was used to investigate how the brain processes information from multiple sensory modalities during dynamic posturography. Fifteen healthy volunteers (9M/6F; ages 28 +/− 9 yrs) participated in the posturography study while undergoing fNIRS brain imaging. Four standard conditions from the sensory organization test (SOT) were performed and a bilateral fNIRS probe was used to examine the cortical brain responses from the frontal, temporal, and parietal brain regions. We found there was bilateral activation in the temporal-parietal areas (superior temporal gyrus, STG, and supramarginal gyrus, SMG) when both vision and proprioceptive information was degraded; forcing reliance on primarily vestibular information in the control of balance. This is consistent with previous reports of the role of these regions in vestibular control and demonstrates the potential utility of fNIRS in the study of cortical control of vestibular function during standing balance tasks. PMID:23419940

  16. Highly energized inhibitory interneurons are a central element for information processing in cortical networks

    PubMed Central

    Kann, Oliver; Papageorgiou, Ismini E; Draguhn, Andreas

    2014-01-01

    Gamma oscillations (∼30 to 100 Hz) provide a fundamental mechanism of information processing during sensory perception, motor behavior, and memory formation by coordination of neuronal activity in networks of the hippocampus and neocortex. We review the cellular mechanisms of gamma oscillations about the underlying neuroenergetics, i.e., high oxygen consumption rate and exquisite sensitivity to metabolic stress during hypoxia or poisoning of mitochondrial oxidative phosphorylation. Gamma oscillations emerge from the precise synaptic interactions of excitatory pyramidal cells and inhibitory GABAergic interneurons. In particular, specialized interneurons such as parvalbumin-positive basket cells generate action potentials at high frequency (‘fast-spiking') and synchronize the activity of numerous pyramidal cells by rhythmic inhibition (‘clockwork'). As prerequisites, fast-spiking interneurons have unique electrophysiological properties and particularly high energy utilization, which is reflected in the ultrastructure by enrichment with mitochondria and cytochrome c oxidase, most likely needed for extensive membrane ion transport and γ-aminobutyric acid metabolism. This supports the hypothesis that highly energized fast-spiking interneurons are a central element for cortical information processing and may be critical for cognitive decline when energy supply becomes limited (‘interneuron energy hypothesis'). As a clinical perspective, we discuss the functional consequences of metabolic and oxidative stress in fast-spiking interneurons in aging, ischemia, Alzheimer's disease, and schizophrenia. PMID:24896567

  17. Pitch processing of dynamic lexical tones in the auditory cortex is influenced by sensory and extrasensory processes.

    PubMed

    Krishnan, Ananthanarayan; Gandour, Jackson T; Suresh, Chandan H

    2015-05-01

    The aim is to evaluate how language experience (Chinese, English) shapes processing of pitch contours as reflected in the amplitude of cortical pitch response components. Responses were elicited from three dynamic curvilinear nonspeech stimuli varying in pitch direction and location of peak acceleration: Mandarin lexical Tone 2 (rising) and Tone 4 (falling), and a flipped variant of Tone 2, Tone 2' (nonnative). At temporal sites (T7/T8), Chinese listeners' Na-Pb response amplitudes to Tones 2 and 4 were greater than those of English listeners in the right hemisphere only; a rightward asymmetry for Tones 2 and 4 was restricted to the Chinese group. In common to both Fz-to-linked T7/T8 and T7/T8 electrode sites, the stimulus pattern (Tones 2 and 4 > Tone 2') was found in the Chinese group only. As reflected by Pb-Nb at Fz, Chinese subjects' amplitudes were larger than those of English subjects in response to Tones 2 and 4, and Tones 2 and 4 were larger than Tone 2', whereas for English subjects, Tone 2 was larger than Tone 2' and Tone 4. At frontal electrode sites (F3/F4), regardless of component or hemisphere, Chinese subjects' responses were larger in amplitude than those of English subjects across stimuli. For either group, responses to Tones 2 and 4 were larger than Tone 2'. No hemispheric asymmetry was observed at the frontal electrode sites. These findings demonstrate that cortical pitch response components are differentially modulated by experience-dependent, temporally distinct but functionally overlapping, weighting of sensory and extrasensory effects on pitch processing of lexical tones in the right temporal lobe and, more broadly, are consistent with a distributed hierarchical predictive coding process. PMID:25943576

  18. Pitch processing of dynamic lexical tones in the auditory cortex is influenced by sensory and extrasensory processes

    PubMed Central

    Krishnan, Ananthanarayan; Gandour, Jackson T.; Suresh, Chandan H.

    2015-01-01

    The aim is to evaluate how language experience (Chinese, English) shapes processing of pitch contours as reflected in the amplitude of cortical pitch response components. Responses were elicited from three dynamic, curvilinear, nonspeech stimuli varying in pitch direction and location of peak acceleration: Mandarin lexical Tone2 (rising) and Tone4 (falling); and a flipped variant of Tone2, Tone2′ (nonnative). At temporal sites (T7/T8), Chinese Na-Pb response amplitude to Tones 2 & 4 was greater than English in the right hemisphere only; a rightward asymmetry for Tones 2 & 4 was restricted to the Chinese group. In common to both Fz-to-linked T7/T8 and T7/T8 electrode sites, the stimulus pattern (Tones 2 & 4 > Tone2′) was found in the Chinese group only. As reflected by Pb-Nb at Fz, Chinese amplitude was larger than English in response to Tones 2 & 4; and Tones 2 & 4 were larger than Tone2′; whereas for English, Tone2 was larger than Tone2′ and Tone4. At frontal electrode sites (F3/F4), regardless of component or hemisphere, Chinese responses were larger in amplitude than English across stimuli. For either group, responses to Tones 2 & 4 were larger than Tone2′. No hemispheric asymmetry was observed at the frontal electrode sites. These findings highlight that cortical pitch response components are differentially modulated by experience-dependent, temporally distinct but functionally overlapping weighting of sensory and extrasensory effects on pitch processing of lexical tones in the right temporal lobe and, more broadly, are consistent with a distributed hierarchical predictive coding process. PMID:25943576

  19. Incorporating Midbrain Adaptation to Mean Sound Level Improves Models of Auditory Cortical Processing

    PubMed Central

    Schoppe, Oliver; King, Andrew J.; Schnupp, Jan W.H.; Harper, Nicol S.

    2016-01-01

    Adaptation to stimulus statistics, such as the mean level and contrast of recently heard sounds, has been demonstrated at various levels of the auditory pathway. It allows the nervous system to operate over the wide range of intensities and contrasts found in the natural world. Yet current standard models of the response properties of auditory neurons do not incorporate such adaptation. Here we present a model of neural responses in the ferret auditory cortex (the IC Adaptation model), which takes into account adaptation to mean sound level at a lower level of processing: the inferior colliculus (IC). The model performs high-pass filtering with frequency-dependent time constants on the sound spectrogram, followed by half-wave rectification, and passes the output to a standard linear–nonlinear (LN) model. We find that the IC Adaptation model consistently predicts cortical responses better than the standard LN model for a range of synthetic and natural stimuli. The IC Adaptation model introduces no extra free parameters, so it improves predictions without sacrificing parsimony. Furthermore, the time constants of adaptation in the IC appear to be matched to the statistics of natural sounds, suggesting that neurons in the auditory midbrain predict the mean level of future sounds and adapt their responses appropriately. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT An ability to accurately predict how sensory neurons respond to novel stimuli is critical if we are to fully characterize their response properties. Attempts to model these responses have had a distinguished history, but it has proven difficult to improve their predictive power significantly beyond that of simple, mostly linear receptive field models. Here we show that auditory cortex receptive field models benefit from a nonlinear preprocessing stage that replicates known adaptation properties of the auditory midbrain. This improves their predictive power across a wide range of stimuli but keeps model complexity low as it

  20. Development of sensory processes during limb regeneration in adult crayfish.

    PubMed

    Cooper, R L

    1998-06-01

    The capacity of the crayfish Procambarus clarkii to regenerate its walking legs provides a system for studying the mechanisms of neural regeneration and repair. A set number of excitatory and inhibitory motor neurons innervate all the limb musculature throughout the normal development and regeneration of a limb. The cell bodies of the motor neurons reside within the segmental ganglion and, upon loss of the limb, their axons regrow from their severed distal ends. The cell bodies of the sensory neurons, in contrast, are located close to their sensory endings within the limb, and they are therefore lost, along with the limb, upon autotomy, leaving the severed, distal axonal stumps of the sensory neurons within the ganglionic root. During the regeneration of a limb, new sensory neurons develop within the limb, and their axons must then grow into the ganglionic root to make the appropriate connections for the new limb to become functional. Evidence is presented in the present paper that the sensory axonal stumps do not degenerate before the new sensory neurons appear within the root as the limb regenerates. These results also indicate a progressive advance of growth cones, presumably sensory in origin, towards the neuropil within the ganglion over time. PMID:9576885

  1. Early sensory processing deficits predict sensitivity to distraction in schizophrenia.

    PubMed

    Smucny, Jason; Olincy, Ann; Eichman, Lindsay C; Lyons, Emma; Tregellas, Jason R

    2013-06-01

    Patients with schizophrenia frequently report difficulties paying attention during important tasks, because they are distracted by noise in the environment. The neurobiological mechanism underlying this problem is, however, poorly understood. The goal of this study was to determine if early sensory processing deficits contribute to sensitivity to distracting noise in schizophrenia. To that end, we examined the effect of environmentally relevant distracting noise on performance of an attention task in 19 patients with schizophrenia and 22 age and gender-matched healthy comparison subjects. Using electroencephalography, P50 auditory gating ratios also were measured in the same subjects and were examined for their relationship to noise-induced changes in performance on the attention task. Positive symptoms also were evaluated in patients. Distracting noise caused a greater increase in reaction time in patients, relative to comparison subjects, on the attention task. Higher P50 auditory gating ratios also were observed in patients. P50 gating ratio significantly correlated with the magnitude of noise-induced increase in reaction time. Noise-induced increase in reaction time was associated with delusional thoughts in patients. P50 ratios were associated with delusional thoughts and hallucinations in patients. In conclusion, the observation of noise effects on attention in patients is consistent with subjective reports from patients. The observed relationship between noise effects on reaction time and P50 auditory gating supports the hypothesis that early inhibitory processing deficits may contribute to susceptibility to distraction in the illness. PMID:23590872

  2. ICA-derived cortical responses indexing rapid multi-feature auditory processing in six-month-old infants.

    PubMed

    Piazza, Caterina; Cantiani, Chiara; Akalin-Acar, Zeynep; Miyakoshi, Makoto; Benasich, April A; Reni, Gianluigi; Bianchi, Anna Maria; Makeig, Scott

    2016-06-01

    The abilities of infants to perceive basic acoustic differences, essential for language development, can be studied using auditory event-related potentials (ERPs). However, scalp-channel averaged ERPs sum volume-conducted contributions from many cortical areas, reducing the functional specificity and interpretability of channel-based ERP measures. This study represents the first attempt to investigate rapid auditory processing in infancy using independent component analysis (ICA), allowing exploration of source-resolved ERP dynamics and identification of ERP cortical generators. Here, we recorded 60-channel EEG data in 34 typically developing 6-month-old infants during a passive acoustic oddball paradigm presenting 'standard' tones interspersed with frequency- or duration-deviant tones. ICA decomposition was applied to single-subject EEG data. The best-fitting equivalent dipole or bilaterally symmetric dipole pair was then estimated for each resulting independent component (IC) process using a four-layer infant head model. Similar brain-source ICs were clustered across subjects. Results showed ERP contributions from auditory cortex and multiple extra-auditory cortical areas (often, bilaterally paired). Different cortical source combinations contributed to the frequency- and duration-deviant ERP peak sequences. For ICs in an ERP-dominant source cluster located in or near the mid-cingulate cortex, source-resolved frequency-deviant response N2 latency and P3 amplitude at 6 months-of-age predicted vocabulary size at 20 months-of-age. The same measures for scalp channel F6 (though not for other frontal channels) showed similar but weaker correlations. These results demonstrate the significant potential of ICA analyses to facilitate a deeper understanding of the neural substrates of infant sensory processing. PMID:26944858

  3. Functionally Approached Body (FAB) Strategies for Young Children Who Have Behavioral and Sensory Processing Challenges

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Pagano, John

    2005-01-01

    Functionally Approached Body (FAB) Strategies offer a clinical approach to help parents of young children with behavioral and sensory processing strategies. This article introduces the FAB Strategies, clinical strategies developed by the author for understanding and addressing young children's behavioral and sensory processing challenges. The FAB…

  4. Vasopressin Proves Es-sense-tial: Vasopressin and the Modulation of Sensory Processing in Mammals

    PubMed Central

    Bester-Meredith, Janet K.; Fancher, Alexandria P.; Mammarella, Grace E.

    2015-01-01

    As mammals develop, they encounter increasing social complexity in the surrounding world. In order to survive, mammals must show appropriate behaviors toward their mates, offspring, and same-sex conspecifics. Although the behavioral effects of the neuropeptide arginine vasopressin (AVP) have been studied in a variety of social contexts, the effects of this neuropeptide on multimodal sensory processing have received less attention. AVP is widely distributed through sensory regions of the brain and has been demonstrated to modulate olfactory, auditory, gustatory, and visual processing. Here, we review the evidence linking AVP to the processing of social stimuli in sensory regions of the brain and explore how sensory processing can shape behavioral responses to these stimuli. In addition, we address the interplay between hormonal and neural AVP in regulating sensory processing of social cues. Because AVP pathways show plasticity during development, early life experiences may shape life-long processing of sensory information. Furthermore, disorders of social behavior such as autism and schizophrenia that have been linked with AVP also have been linked with dysfunctions in sensory processing. Together, these studies suggest that AVP’s diversity of effects on social behavior across a variety of mammalian species may result from the effects of this neuropeptide on sensory processing. PMID:25705203

  5. Ontogeny of Excitatory Spinal Neurons Processing Distinct Somatic Sensory Modalities

    PubMed Central

    Xu, Yi; Lopes, Claudia; Wende, Hagen; Guo, Zhen; Cheng, Leping; Birchmeier, Carmen

    2013-01-01

    Spatial and temporal cues govern the genesis of a diverse array of neurons located in the dorsal spinal cord, including dI1-dI6, dILA, and dILB subtypes, but their physiological functions are poorly understood. Here we generated a new line of conditional knock-out (CKO) mice, in which the homeobox gene Tlx3 was removed in dI5 and dILB cells. In these CKO mice, development of a subset of excitatory neurons located in laminae I and II was impaired, including itch-related GRPR-expressing neurons, PKCγ-expressing neurons, and neurons expressing three neuropeptide genes: somatostatin, preprotachykinin 1, and the gastrin-releasing peptide. These CKO mice displayed marked deficits in generating nocifensive motor behaviors evoked by a range of pain-related or itch-related stimuli. The mutants also failed to exhibit escape response evoked by dynamic mechanical stimuli but retained the ability to sense innocuous cooling and/or warm. Thus, our studies provide new insight into the ontogeny of spinal neurons processing distinct sensory modalities. PMID:24027274

  6. Sensory profiles for dried fig (Ficus carica L.) cultivars commercially grown and processed in California.

    PubMed

    Haug, Megan T; King, Ellena S; Heymann, Hildegarde; Crisosto, Carlos H

    2013-08-01

    A trained sensory panel evaluated the 6 fig cultivars currently sold in the California dried fig market. The main flavor and aroma attributes determined by the sensory panel were "caramel," "honey," "raisin," and "fig," with additional aroma attributes: "common date," "dried plum," and "molasses." Sensory differences were observed between dried fig cultivars. All figs were processed by 2 commercial handlers. Processing included potassium sorbate as a preservative and SO2 application as an antibrowning agent for white cultivars. As a consequence of SO2 use during processing, high sulfite residues affected the sensory profiles of the white dried fig cultivars. Significant differences between dried fig cultivars and sources demonstrate perceived differences between processing and storage methods. The panel-determined sensory lexicon can help with California fig marketing. PMID:23957419

  7. The role of sensory-motor modality compatibility in language processing.

    PubMed

    Schaeffner, Simone; Koch, Iring; Philipp, Andrea M

    2016-03-01

    Language processing requires the combination of compatible (auditory-vocal and visual-manual) or incompatible (auditory-manual and visual-vocal) sensory-motor modalities, and switching between these sensory-motor modality combinations is very common in every-day life. Sensory-motor modality compatibility is defined as the similarity of stimulus modality and the modality of response-related sensory consequences. We investigated the influence of sensory-motor modality compatibility during performing language-related cognitive operations on different linguistic levels. More specifically, we used a variant of the task-switching paradigm, in which participants had to switch between compatible or between incompatible sensory-motor modality combinations during a verbal semantic categorization (Experiment 1) or during a word-form decision (Experiment 2). The data show higher switch costs (i.e., higher reaction times and error rates in switch trials compared to repetition trials) in incompatible sensory-motor modality combinations than in compatible sensory-motor modality combinations. This was true for every language-related cognitive operation, regardless of the individual linguistic level. Taken together, the present study demonstrates that sensory-motor modality compatibility plays an important role in modality switching during language processing. PMID:25813198

  8. Age-Related Variability in Cortical Activity during Language Processing

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Fridriksson, Julius; Morrow, K. Leigh; Moser, Dana; Baylis, Gordon C.

    2006-01-01

    Purpose: The present study investigated the extent of cortical activity during overt picture naming using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI). Method: Participants comprised 20 healthy, adult participants with ages ranging from 20 to 82 years. While undergoing fMRI, participants completed a picture-naming task consisting of 60…

  9. Asymmetrical Cortical Processing of Radial Expansioncontraction in Infants and Adults

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Shirai, Nobu; Birtles, Deirdre; Wattam-Bell, John; Yamaguchi, Masami K.; Kanazawa, So; Atkinson, Janette; Braddick, Oliver

    2009-01-01

    We report asymmetrical cortical responses (steady-state visual evoked potentials) to radial expansion and contraction in human infants and adults. Forty-four infants (22 3-month-olds and 22 4-month-olds) and nine adults viewed dynamic dot patterns which cyclically (2.1 Hz) alternate between radial expansion (or contraction) and random directional…

  10. Alcohol sensory processing and its relevance for ingestion.

    PubMed

    Brasser, Susan M; Castro, Norma; Feretic, Brian

    2015-09-01

    Alcohol possesses complex sensory attributes that are first detected by the body via sensory receptors and afferent fibers that promptly transmit signals to brain areas involved in mediating ingestive motivation, reinforcement, and addictive behavior. Given that the chemosensory cues accompanying alcohol consumption are among the most intimate, consistent, and immediate predictors of alcohol's postabsorptive effects, with experience these stimuli also gain powerful associative incentive value to elicit craving and related physiologic changes, maintenance of ongoing alcohol use, and reinstatement of drug seeking after periods of abstinence. Despite the above, preclinical research has traditionally dichotomized alcohol's taste and postingestive influences as independent regulators of motivation to drink. The present review summarizes current evidence regarding alcohol's ability to directly activate peripheral and central oral chemosensory circuits, relevance for intake of the drug, and provides a framework for moving beyond a dissociation between the sensory and postabsorptive effects of alcohol to understand their neurobiological integration and significance for alcohol addiction. PMID:25304192

  11. Relationship between Social Competence and Sensory Processing in Children with High Functioning Autism Spectrum Disorders

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hilton, Claudia; Graver, Kathleen; LaVesser, Patricia

    2007-01-01

    Purpose: This study examines the relationship between social competence and sensory processing in children with high functioning autism spectrum disorders. Methodology: Children, ages 6-10 (N = 36), with high functioning autism spectrum disorders were assessed using the Social Responsiveness Scale (SRS) and the Sensory Profile (SP). A bivariate…

  12. Sensory Processing Measure-HK Chinese Version: Psychometric Properties and Pattern of Response across Environments

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lai, Cynthia Y. Y.; Chung, Jenny C. C.; Chan, Chetwyn C. H.; Li-Tsang, Cecilia W. P.

    2011-01-01

    This study aimed to examine the psychometric properties of the Sensory Processing Measure-Hong Kong Chinese version (SPM-HKC), and to study the pattern of behavioral response of children towards sensory events across home and school settings. The two major forms of the SPM, Home Form and Main Classroom Form, were translated into Chinese in this…

  13. Brief Report: Exploring the Relationship between Sensory Processing and Repetitive Behaviours in Williams Syndrome

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Riby, Deborah M.; Janes, Emily; Rodgers, Jacqui

    2013-01-01

    This study explored the relationship between sensory processing abnormalities and repetitive behaviours in children with Williams Syndrome (WS; n = 21). This is a novel investigation bringing together two clinical phenomena for the first time in this neuro-developmental disorder. Parents completed the Sensory Profile (Short Form; Dunn in The…

  14. Sensory Processing Relates to Attachment to Childhood Comfort Objects of College Students

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kalpidou, Maria

    2012-01-01

    The author tested the hypothesis that attachment to comfort objects is based on the sensory processing characteristics of the individual. Fifty-two undergraduate students with and without a childhood comfort object reported sensory responses and performed a tactile threshold task. Those with a comfort object described their object and rated their…

  15. The Stimulus Selectivity and Connectivity of Layer Six Principal Cells Reveals Cortical Microcircuits Underlying Visual Processing

    PubMed Central

    Vélez-Fort, Mateo; Rousseau, Charly V.; Niedworok, Christian J.; Wickersham, Ian R.; Rancz, Ede A.; Brown, Alexander P.Y.; Strom, Molly; Margrie, Troy W.

    2014-01-01

    Summary Sensory computations performed in the neocortex involve layer six (L6) cortico-cortical (CC) and cortico-thalamic (CT) signaling pathways. Developing an understanding of the physiological role of these circuits requires dissection of the functional specificity and connectivity of the underlying individual projection neurons. By combining whole-cell recording from identified L6 principal cells in the mouse primary visual cortex (V1) with modified rabies virus-based input mapping, we have determined the sensory response properties and upstream monosynaptic connectivity of cells mediating the CC or CT pathway. We show that CC-projecting cells encompass a broad spectrum of selectivity to stimulus orientation and are predominantly innervated by deep layer V1 neurons. In contrast, CT-projecting cells are ultrasparse firing, exquisitely tuned to orientation and direction information, and receive long-range input from higher cortical areas. This segregation in function and connectivity indicates that L6 microcircuits route specific contextual and stimulus-related information within and outside the cortical network. PMID:25175879

  16. Attentional selection of location and modality in vision and touch modulates low-frequency activity in associated sensory cortices

    PubMed Central

    Kennett, Steffan; Driver, Jon

    2012-01-01

    Selective attention allows us to focus on particular sensory modalities and locations. Relatively little is known about how attention to a sensory modality may relate to selection of other features, such as spatial location, in terms of brain oscillations, although it has been proposed that low-frequency modulation (α- and β-bands) may be key. Here, we investigated how attention to space (left or right) and attention to modality (vision or touch) affect ongoing low-frequency oscillatory brain activity over human sensory cortex. Magnetoencephalography was recorded while participants performed a visual or tactile task. In different blocks, touch or vision was task-relevant, whereas spatial attention was cued to the left or right on each trial. Attending to one or other modality suppressed α-oscillations over the corresponding sensory cortex. Spatial attention led to reduced α-oscillations over both sensorimotor and occipital cortex contralateral to the attended location in the cue-target interval, when either modality was task-relevant. Even modality-selective sensors also showed spatial-attention effects for both modalities. The visual and sensorimotor results were generally highly convergent, yet, although attention effects in occipital cortex were dominant in the α-band, in sensorimotor cortex, these were also clearly present in the β-band. These results extend previous findings that spatial attention can operate in a multimodal fashion and indicate that attention to space and modality both rely on similar mechanisms that modulate low-frequency oscillations. PMID:22323628

  17. Extreme sensory processing patterns and their relation with clinical conditions among individuals with major affective disorders.

    PubMed

    Engel-Yeger, Batya; Muzio, Caterina; Rinosi, Giorgio; Solano, Paola; Geoffroy, Pierre Alexis; Pompili, Maurizio; Amore, Mario; Serafini, Gianluca

    2016-02-28

    Previous studies highlighted the involvement of sensory perception in emotional processes. However, the role of extreme sensory processing patterns expressed in hyper- or hyposensitivity was not thoroughly considered. The present study, in real life conditions, examined the unique sensory processing patterns of individuals with major affective disorders and their relationship with psychiatric symptomatology. The sample consisted of 105 participants with major affective conditions ranging in age from 20 to 84 years (mean=56.7±14.6). All participants completed the Temperament Evaluation of Memphis, Pisa, Paris and San Diego (TEMPS-A), the second version of the Beck Depression Inventory (BDI-II), and Adolescent/Adult Sensory Profile (AASP). Sensory sensitivity/avoiding hypersensitivity patterns and low registration (a hyposensitivity pattern) were prevalent among our sample as compared to normative data. About seventy percent of the sample showed lower seeking tendency. Stepwise regression analyses revealed that depression and anxious/cyclothymic affective temperaments were predicted by sensory sensory/avoiding. Anxious and irritable affective temperaments were predicted by low registration. Hyperthymic affective temperament and lower severity of depression were predicted by sensation seeking. Hyposensitivity or hypersensitivity may be "trait" markers of individuals with major affective disorders. Interventions should refer to the individual unique sensory profiles and their behavioral and functional impact in the context of real life. PMID:26738981

  18. DEVELOPMENT OF MARKETABLE TYPING SKILL--SENSORY PROCESSES UNDERLYING ACQUISITION.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    WEST, LEONARD J.

    THE PROJECT ATTEMPTED TO PROVIDE FURTHER DATA ON THE DOMINANT HYPOTHESIS ABOUT THE SENSORY MECHANISMS UNDERLYING SKILL ACQUISITION IN TYPEWRITING. IN SO DOING, IT PROPOSED TO FURNISH A BASIS FOR IMPORTANT CORRECTIVES TO SUCH CONVENTIONAL INSTRUCTIONAL PROCEDURES AS TOUCH TYPING. SPECIFICALLY, THE HYPOTHESIS HAS BEEN THAT KINESTHESIS IS NOT…

  19. Switching between Sensory and Affective Systems Incurs Processing Costs

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Vermeulen, Nicolas; Niedenthal, Paula M.; Luminet, Olivier

    2007-01-01

    Recent models of the conceptual system hold that concepts are grounded in simulations of actual experiences with instances of those concepts in sensory-motor systems (e.g., Barsalou, 1999, 2003; Solomon & Barsalou, 2001). Studies supportive of such a view have shown that verifying a property of a concept in one modality, and then switching to…

  20. Effects of infant and maternal sensory processing on infant fussing, crying, and sleep.

    PubMed

    McGeorge, Kate; Milne, Lisa; Cotton, Louise; Whelan, Tom

    2015-01-01

    This study investigated the effects of infant and maternal sensory processing on sleep, fussing, and crying in a sample of 55 firstborn, 4- to 7-month-old infants and their mothers. Mothers completed self-report questionnaires to assess maternal and infant sensory processing styles and a 4-day diary of infant behavior, including sleep, fussing, and crying. Higher levels of infant Sensation Avoiding were associated with less sleep, more fussing, and more crying whereas higher levels of Sensory Sensitivity were associated with less sleep and more fussing. The positive association between infant Sensation Avoiding and crying was strengthened by lower levels of Low Registration in mothers. The effect of infant Sensory Sensitivity on reducing total sleep also was strengthened by lower levels of maternal Low Registration. Assessment of infant sensory processing as well as the moderating effect of maternal sensory processing on the relationship between infant sensory processing and infant regulatory capacities need to be considered when assessing and designing interventions for families in which infant regulation is problematic. PMID:25892527

  1. Beta EEG reflects sensory processing in active wakefulness and homeostatic sleep drive in quiet wakefulness.

    PubMed

    Grønli, Janne; Rempe, Michael J; Clegern, William C; Schmidt, Michelle; Wisor, Jonathan P

    2016-06-01

    Markers of sleep drive (<10 Hz; slow-wave activity and theta) have been identified in the course of slow-wave sleep and wakefulness. So far, higher frequencies in the waking electroencephalogram have not been examined thoroughly as a function of sleep drive. Here, electroencephalogram dynamics were measured in epochs of active wake (wake characterized by high muscle tone) or quiet wake (wake characterized by low muscle tone). It was hypothesized that the higher beta oscillations (15-35 Hz, measured by local field potential and electroencephalography) represent fundamentally different processes in active wake and quiet wake. In active wake, sensory stimulation elevated beta activity in parallel with gamma (80-90 Hz) activity, indicative of cognitive processing. In quiet wake, beta activity paralleled slow-wave activity (1-4 Hz) and theta (5-8 Hz) in tracking sleep need. Cerebral lactate concentration, a measure of cerebral glucose utilization, increased during active wake whereas it declined during quiet wake. Mathematical modelling of state-dependent dynamics of cortical lactate concentration was more precisely predictive when quiet wake and active wake were included as two distinct substates rather than a uniform state of wakefulness. The extent to which lactate concentration declined in quiet wake and increased in active wake was proportionate to the amount of beta activity. These data distinguish quiet wake from active wake. Quiet wake, particularly when characterized by beta activity, is permissive to metabolic and electrophysiological changes that occur in slow-wave sleep. These data urge further studies on state-dependent beta oscillations across species. PMID:26825702

  2. Coordinated and Compartmentalized Neuromodulation Shapes Sensory Processing in Drosophila.

    PubMed

    Cohn, Raphael; Morantte, Ianessa; Ruta, Vanessa

    2015-12-17

    Learned and adaptive behaviors rely on neural circuits that flexibly couple the same sensory input to alternative output pathways. Here, we show that the Drosophila mushroom body functions like a switchboard in which neuromodulation reroutes the same odor signal to different behavioral circuits, depending on the state and experience of the fly. Using functional synaptic imaging and electrophysiology, we reveal that dopaminergic inputs to the mushroom body modulate synaptic transmission with exquisite spatial specificity, allowing individual neurons to differentially convey olfactory signals to each of their postsynaptic targets. Moreover, we show that the dopaminergic neurons function as an interconnected network, encoding information about both an animal's external context and internal state to coordinate synaptic plasticity throughout the mushroom body. Our data suggest a general circuit mechanism for behavioral flexibility in which neuromodulatory networks act with synaptic precision to transform a single sensory input into different patterns of output activity. PAPERCLIP. PMID:26687359

  3. Putative lateral inhibition in sensory processing for directional turns

    PubMed Central

    Yafremava, Liudmila S.

    2011-01-01

    Computing targeted responses is a general problem in goal-directed behaviors. We sought the sensory template for directional turning in the predatory sea slug Pleurobranchaea californica, which calculates precise turn angles by averaging multiple stimulus sites on its chemotactile oral veil (Yafremava LS, Anthony CW, Lane L, Campbell JK, Gillette R. J Exp Biol 210: 561–569, 2007). Spiking responses to appetitive chemotactile stimulation were recorded in the two bilateral pairs of oral veil nerves, the large oral veil nerve (LOVN) and the tentacle nerve (TN). The integrative abilities of the peripheral nervous system were significant. Nerve spiking responses to punctate, one-site stimulation of the oral veil followed sigmoid relations as stimuli moved between lateral tentacle and the midline. Receptive fields of LOVN and TN were unilateral, overlapping, and oppositely weighted for responsiveness across the length of oral veil. Simultaneous two-site stimulation caused responses of amplitudes markedly smaller than the sum of corresponding one-site responses. Plots of two-site nerve responses against the summed approximate distances from midline of each site were markedly linear. Thus the sensory paths in the peripheral nervous system show reciprocal occlusion similar to lateral inhibition. This outcome suggests a novel neural function for lateral inhibitory mechanisms, distinct from simple contrast enhancement, in computation of both sensory maps and targeted motor actions. PMID:21490281

  4. Inhibitory Circuits in Cortical Layer 5

    PubMed Central

    Naka, Alexander; Adesnik, Hillel

    2016-01-01

    Inhibitory neurons play a fundamental role in cortical computation and behavior. Recent technological advances, such as two photon imaging, targeted in vivo recording, and molecular profiling, have improved our understanding of the function and diversity of cortical interneurons, but for technical reasons most work has been directed towards inhibitory neurons in the superficial cortical layers. Here we review current knowledge specifically on layer 5 (L5) inhibitory microcircuits, which play a critical role in controlling cortical output. We focus on recent work from the well-studied rodent barrel cortex, but also draw on evidence from studies in primary visual cortex and other cortical areas. The diversity of both deep inhibitory neurons and their pyramidal cell targets make this a challenging but essential area of study in cortical computation and sensory processing. PMID:27199675

  5. Inhibitory Circuits in Cortical Layer 5.

    PubMed

    Naka, Alexander; Adesnik, Hillel

    2016-01-01

    Inhibitory neurons play a fundamental role in cortical computation and behavior. Recent technological advances, such as two photon imaging, targeted in vivo recording, and molecular profiling, have improved our understanding of the function and diversity of cortical interneurons, but for technical reasons most work has been directed towards inhibitory neurons in the superficial cortical layers. Here we review current knowledge specifically on layer 5 (L5) inhibitory microcircuits, which play a critical role in controlling cortical output. We focus on recent work from the well-studied rodent barrel cortex, but also draw on evidence from studies in primary visual cortex and other cortical areas. The diversity of both deep inhibitory neurons and their pyramidal cell targets make this a challenging but essential area of study in cortical computation and sensory processing. PMID:27199675

  6. Brief Report: Assessment of Early Sensory Processing in Infants at High-Risk of Autism Spectrum Disorder

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Germani, Tamara; Zwaigenbaum, Lonnie; Bryson, Susan; Brian, Jessica; Smith, Isabel; Roberts, Wendy; Szatmari, Peter; Roncadin, Caroline; Sacrey, Lori Ann R.; Garon, Nancy; Vaillancourt, Tracy

    2014-01-01

    This study assessed sensory processing differences between 24-month infants at high-risk of autism spectrum disorder (ASD), each with an older sibling with ASD, and low-risk infants with no family history of ASD. Sensory processing differences were assessed using the Infant/Toddler Sensory Profile, a parent-reported measure. Groups were compared…

  7. Relations between Temperament, Sensory Processing, and Motor Coordination in 3-Year-Old Children.

    PubMed

    Nakagawa, Atsuko; Sukigara, Masune; Miyachi, Taishi; Nakai, Akio

    2016-01-01

    Poor motor skills and differences in sensory processing have been noted as behavioral markers of common neurodevelopmental disorders. A total of 171 healthy children (81 girls, 90 boys) were investigated at age 3 to examine relations between temperament, sensory processing, and motor coordination. Using the Japanese versions of the Children's Behavior Questionnaire (CBQ), the Sensory Profile (SP-J), and the Little Developmental Coordination Disorder Questionnaire (LDCDQ), this study examines an expanded model based on Rothbart's three-factor temperamental theory (surgency, negative affect, effortful control) through covariance structure analysis. The results indicate that effortful control affects both sensory processing and motor coordination. The subscale of the LDCDQ, control during movement, is also influenced by surgency, while temperamental negative affect and surgency each have an effect on subscales of the SP-J. PMID:27199852

  8. Relations between Temperament, Sensory Processing, and Motor Coordination in 3-Year-Old Children

    PubMed Central

    Nakagawa, Atsuko; Sukigara, Masune; Miyachi, Taishi; Nakai, Akio

    2016-01-01

    Poor motor skills and differences in sensory processing have been noted as behavioral markers of common neurodevelopmental disorders. A total of 171 healthy children (81 girls, 90 boys) were investigated at age 3 to examine relations between temperament, sensory processing, and motor coordination. Using the Japanese versions of the Children's Behavior Questionnaire (CBQ), the Sensory Profile (SP-J), and the Little Developmental Coordination Disorder Questionnaire (LDCDQ), this study examines an expanded model based on Rothbart's three-factor temperamental theory (surgency, negative affect, effortful control) through covariance structure analysis. The results indicate that effortful control affects both sensory processing and motor coordination. The subscale of the LDCDQ, control during movement, is also influenced by surgency, while temperamental negative affect and surgency each have an effect on subscales of the SP-J. PMID:27199852

  9. Comparing Sensory Information Processing and Alexithymia between People with Substance Dependency and Normal

    PubMed Central

    Bashapoor, Sajjad; Hosseini-Kiasari, Seyyedeh Tayebeh; Daneshvar, Somayeh; Kazemi-Taskooh, Zeinab

    2015-01-01

    Background Sensory information processing and alexithymia are two important factors in determining behavioral reactions. Some studies explain the effect of the sensitivity of sensory processing and alexithymia in the tendency to substance abuse. Giving that, the aim of the current study was to compare the styles of sensory information processing and alexithymia between substance-dependent people and normal ones. Methods The research method was cross-sectional and the statistical population of the current study comprised of all substance-dependent men who are present in substance quitting camps of Masal, Iran, in October 2013 (n = 78). 36 persons were selected randomly by simple randomly sampling method from this population as the study group, and 36 persons were also selected among the normal population in the same way as the comparison group. Both groups was evaluated by using Toronto alexithymia scale (TAS) and adult sensory profile, and the multivariate analysis of variance (MANOVA) test was applied to analyze data. Findings The results showed that there are significance differences between two groups in low registration (P < 0.020, F = 5.66), sensation seeking (P < 0.050, F = 1.92), and sensory avoidance (P < 0.008, F = 7.52) as a components of sensory processing and difficulty in describing emotions (P < 0.001, F = 15.01) and difficulty in identifying emotions (P < 0.002, F = 10.54) as a components of alexithymia. However, no significant difference were found between two groups in components of sensory sensitivity (P < 0.170, F = 1.92) and external oriented thinking style (P < 0.060, F = 3.60). Conclusion These results showed that substance-dependent people process sensory information in a different way than normal people and show more alexithymia features than them. PMID:26885354

  10. Sensory processing in the vestibular nuclei during active head movements

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gdowski, G. T.; Boyle, R.; McCrea, R. A.; Peterson, B. W. (Principal Investigator)

    2000-01-01

    Many secondary vestibular neurons are sensitive to head on trunk rotation during reflex-induced and voluntary head movements. During passive whole body rotation the interaction of head on trunk signals related to the vestibulo-collic reflex with vestibular signals increases the rotational gain of many secondary vestibular neurons, including many that project to the spinal cord. In some units, the sensitivity to head on trunk and vestibular input is matched and the resulting interaction produces an output that is related to the trunk velocity in space. In other units the head on trunk inputs are stronger and the resulting interaction produces an output that is larger during the reflex. During voluntary head movements, inputs related to head on trunk movement combine destructively with vestibular signals, and often cancel the sensory reafferent consequences of self-generated movements. Cancellation of sensory vestibular signals was observed in all of the antidromically identified secondary vestibulospinal units, even though many of these units were not significantly affected by reflexive head on trunk movements. The results imply that the inputs to vestibular neurons related to head on trunk rotation during reflexive and voluntary movements arise from different sources. We suggest that the relative strength of reflexive head on trunk input to different vestibular neurons might reflect the different functional roles they have in controlling the posture of the neck and body.

  11. Sensory Symptoms and Processing of Nonverbal Auditory and Visual Stimuli in Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder.

    PubMed

    Stewart, Claire R; Sanchez, Sandra S; Grenesko, Emily L; Brown, Christine M; Chen, Colleen P; Keehn, Brandon; Velasquez, Francisco; Lincoln, Alan J; Müller, Ralph-Axel

    2016-05-01

    Atypical sensory responses are common in autism spectrum disorder (ASD). While evidence suggests impaired auditory-visual integration for verbal information, findings for nonverbal stimuli are inconsistent. We tested for sensory symptoms in children with ASD (using the Adolescent/Adult Sensory Profile) and examined unisensory and bisensory processing with a nonverbal auditory-visual paradigm, for which neurotypical adults show bisensory facilitation. ASD participants reported more atypical sensory symptoms overall, most prominently in the auditory modality. On the experimental task, reduced response times for bisensory compared to unisensory trials were seen in both ASD and control groups, but neither group showed significant race model violation (evidence of intermodal integration). Findings do not support impaired bisensory processing for simple nonverbal stimuli in high-functioning children with ASD. PMID:25652601

  12. Social interest and the development of cortical face specialization: what autism teaches us about face processing.

    PubMed

    Grelotti, David J; Gauthier, Isabel; Schultz, Robert T

    2002-04-01

    Investigations of face processing in persons with an autism spectrum disorder (ASD) inform upon theories of the development of "normal" face processing, and the story that emerges challenges some models of the nature and origin of cortical face specialization. Individuals with an ASD possess deficits in face processing and a lack of a fusiform face area (FFA). Evidence from studies of ASD can be conceptualized best using an expertise framework of face processing rather than models that postulate a face module in the fusiform gyrus. Because persons with an ASD have reduced social interest, they may fail to develop cortical face specialization. Face specialization may develop in normal individuals because they are socially motivated to regard the face, and such motivation promotes expertise for faces. The amygdala is likely the key node in the system that marks objects as emotionally salient and could be crucial to the development of cortical face specialization. PMID:11891634

  13. A central processing sensory deficit with Parkinson's disease.

    PubMed

    Hwang, Sungjae; Agada, Peter; Grill, Stephen; Kiemel, Tim; Jeka, John J

    2016-08-01

    Parkinson's disease (PD) is a progressive degenerative disease manifested by tremor, rigidity, bradykinesia, and postural instability. Deficits in proprioceptive integration are prevalent in individuals with PD, even at early stages of the disease. These deficits have been demonstrated primarily during investigations of reaching. Here, we investigated how PD affects sensory fusion of multiple modalities during upright standing. We simultaneously perturbed upright stance with visual, vestibular, and proprioceptive stimulation, to understand how these modalities are reweighted so that overall feedback remains suited to stabilizing upright stance in individuals with PD. Eight individuals with PD stood in a visual cave with a moving visual scene at 0.2 Hz while an 80-Hz vibratory stimulus was applied bilaterally to their Achilles tendons (stimulus turns on-off at 0.28 Hz) and a ±1 mA bilateral monopolar galvanic stimulus was applied at 0.36 Hz. The visual stimulus was presented at different amplitudes (0.2°, 0.8° rotation about ankle axis) to measure: the change in gain (weighting) to vision, an intramodal effect; and a simultaneous change in gain to vibration and galvanic stimulation, both intermodal effects. Trunk/leg gain relative to vision decreased when visual amplitude was increased, reflecting an intramodal visual effect. In contrast, when vibration was turned on/off, leg gain relative to vision was equivalent in individuals with PD, indicating no reweighting of visual information when proprioception was disrupted through vibration (i.e., no intermodal effect). Trunk and leg angle gain relative to GVS also showed no reweighting in individuals with PD. These results are in contrast to previous results with healthy adults, who showed clear intermodal effects in the same paradigm, suggesting that individuals with PD not only have a proprioceptive deficit during standing, but also have a cross-modal sensory fusion deficit that is crucial for upright stance

  14. Complementary roles of cortical oscillations in automatic and controlled processing during rapid serial tasks.

    PubMed

    Isabella, Silvia; Ferrari, Paul; Jobst, Cecilia; Cheyne, J Allan; Cheyne, Douglas

    2015-09-01

    Cognitive control may involve adjusting behaviour by inhibiting or altering habitual actions, requiring rapid communication between sensory, cognitive, and motor systems of the brain. Cognitive control may be achieved using top-down processing from frontal areas to inhibit prepared responses, likely mediated through frontal theta (4-8 Hz) oscillations. However there is conflicting evidence for mechanisms of response inhibition, where global and selective inhibition are either considered separate processes, or frontal areas maintain and execute goal-directed actions, including inhibition. In the current study we measured neuromagnetic oscillatory brain activity in twelve adults responding to rapidly presented visual cues. We used two tasks in the same subjects that required inhibition of a habitual "go" response. Presentation of infrequent "target" cues required subjects to completely inhibit responding (go/no-go task) or to perform an alternate response (go/switch task). Source analysis of oscillatory brain activity was compared for correct no-go and switch trials as well as error trials ("go" responses to targets). Frontal theta activity was similar in cortical location, amplitude and time course for correct no-go and switch responses reflecting an equivalent role in both global and selective response inhibition. Error-related frontal theta activity was also observed but was different in source location (errors vs correct, both tasks: p<0.005) and power (go/switch>go/no-go error, correct switch power, p=0.01). We additionally observed sensorimotor high gamma (60-90 Hz) activity accompanying motor responses, which was markedly stronger for correct switch and error responses compared with go responses, and was delayed for errors (p<0.01). These results suggest that gamma signals in the motor cortex may function to integrate inhibitory signals with sensorimotor processing, and may represent a mechanism for the overriding of habitual behaviours, as errors were

  15. Prestimulus influences on auditory perception from sensory representations and decision processes

    PubMed Central

    McNair, Steven W.

    2016-01-01

    The qualities of perception depend not only on the sensory inputs but also on the brain state before stimulus presentation. Although the collective evidence from neuroimaging studies for a relation between prestimulus state and perception is strong, the interpretation in the context of sensory computations or decision processes has remained difficult. In the auditory system, for example, previous studies have reported a wide range of effects in terms of the perceptually relevant frequency bands and state parameters (phase/power). To dissociate influences of state on earlier sensory representations and higher-level decision processes, we collected behavioral and EEG data in human participants performing two auditory discrimination tasks relying on distinct acoustic features. Using single-trial decoding, we quantified the relation between prestimulus activity, relevant sensory evidence, and choice in different task-relevant EEG components. Within auditory networks, we found that phase had no direct influence on choice, whereas power in task-specific frequency bands affected the encoding of sensory evidence. Within later-activated frontoparietal regions, theta and alpha phase had a direct influence on choice, without involving sensory evidence. These results delineate two consistent mechanisms by which prestimulus activity shapes perception. However, the timescales of the relevant neural activity depend on the specific brain regions engaged by the respective task. PMID:27071110

  16. Cortical plasticity for visuospatial processing and object recognition in deaf and hearing signers.

    PubMed

    Weisberg, Jill; Koo, Daniel S; Crain, Kelly L; Eden, Guinevere F

    2012-03-01

    Experience-dependent plasticity in deaf participants has been shown in a variety of studies focused on either the dorsal or ventral aspects of the visual system, but both systems have never been investigated in concert. Using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), we investigated functional plasticity for spatial processing (a dorsal visual pathway function) and for object processing (a ventral visual pathway function) concurrently, in the context of differing sensory (auditory deprivation) and language (use of a signed language) experience. During scanning, deaf native users of American Sign Language (ASL), hearing native ASL users, and hearing participants without ASL experience attended to either the spatial arrangement of frames containing objects or the identity of the objects themselves. These two tasks revealed the expected dorsal/ventral dichotomy for spatial versus object processing in all groups. In addition, the object identity matching task contained both face and house stimuli, allowing us to examine category-selectivity in the ventral pathway in all three participant groups. When contrasting the groups we found that deaf signers differed from the two hearing groups in dorsal pathway parietal regions involved in spatial cognition, suggesting sensory experience-driven plasticity. Group differences in the object processing system indicated that responses in the face-selective right lateral fusiform gyrus and anterior superior temporal cortex were sensitive to a combination of altered sensory and language experience, whereas responses in the amygdala were more closely tied to sensory experience. By selectively engaging the dorsal and ventral visual pathways within participants in groups with different sensory and language experiences, we have demonstrated that these experiences affect the function of both of these systems, and that certain changes are more closely tied to sensory experience, while others are driven by the combination of sensory and

  17. Cortical plasticity for visuospatial processing and object recognition in deaf and hearing signers

    PubMed Central

    Weisberg, Jill; Koo, Daniel S.; Crain, Kelly L.; Eden, Guinevere F.

    2012-01-01

    Experience-dependent plasticity in deaf participants has been shown in a variety of studies focused on either the dorsal or ventral aspects of the visual system, but both systems have never been investigated in concert. Using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), we investigated functional plasticity for spatial processing (a dorsal visual pathway function) and for object processing (a ventral visual pathway function) concurrently, in the context of differing sensory (auditory deprivation) and language (use of a signed language) experience. During scanning, deaf native users of American Sign Language (ASL), hearing native ASL users, and hearing participants without ASL experience attended to either the spatial arrangement of frames containing objects or the identity of the objects themselves. These two tasks revealed the expected dorsal/ventral dichotomy for spatial versus object processing in all groups. In addition, the object identity matching task contained both face and house stimuli, allowing us to examine category-selectivity in the ventral pathway in all three participant groups. When contrasting the groups we found that deaf signers differed from the two hearing groups in dorsal pathway parietal regions involved in spatial cognition, suggesting sensory experience-driven plasticity. Group differences in the object processing system indicated that responses in the face-selective right lateral fusiform gyrus and anterior superior temporal cortex were sensitive to a combination of altered sensory and language experience, whereas responses in the amygdala were more closely tied to sensory experience. By selectively engaging the dorsal and ventral visual pathways within participants in groups with different sensory and language experiences, we have demonstrated that these experiences affect the function of both of these systems, and that certain changes are more closely tied to sensory experience, while others are driven by the combination of sensory and

  18. Isovaline attenuates generalized epileptiform activity in hippocampal and primary sensory cortices and seizure behavior in pilocarpine treated rats.

    PubMed

    Yu, Wilson; Smith, Autumn B; Pilitsis, Julie G; Shin, Damian S

    2015-07-10

    Anti-seizure drugs are the most commonly employed treatment option for epilepsy and these generally provide effective management of seizures. However, 30% of patients with epilepsy are not adequately treated with anti-seizure medications and are considered intractable. Recently we reported that isovaline, a unique amino acid, could attenuate seizure like events (SLEs) in two in vitro hippocampal seizure models by selectively increasing the activity of interneurons, but not pyramidal neurons. Isovaline also attenuated hippocampal epileptiform activity and behavioral seizures in vivo in rats administered 4 aminopyridine (4AP). Here, we investigate whether isovaline is efficacious in attenuating secondarily generalized epileptiform activity and behavioral seizures in rats administered pilocarpine. We found that 150 mg/kg isovaline administered intravenously abolished pilocarpine-induced epileptiform activity in the primary sensory cortex and hippocampus and attenuated generalized forebrain behavioral seizures. We are the first to demonstrate that isovaline may be a plausible anti-seizure drug for secondarily generalized seizures and this could potentially lead to the development of a novel class of anti-seizure drugs focused around the unique mechanism(s) of isovaline. PMID:26007701

  19. Sensori-Motor Experience Leads to Changes in Visual Processing in the Developing Brain

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    James, Karin Harman

    2010-01-01

    Since Broca's studies on language processing, cortical functional specialization has been considered to be integral to efficient neural processing. A fundamental question in cognitive neuroscience concerns the type of learning that is required for functional specialization to develop. To address this issue with respect to the development of neural…

  20. Self-Referential Processing, Rumination, and Cortical Midline Structures in Major Depression

    PubMed Central

    Nejad, Ayna Baladi; Fossati, Philippe; Lemogne, Cédric

    2013-01-01

    Major depression is associated with a bias toward negative emotional processing and increased self-focus, i.e., the process by which one engages in self-referential processing. The increased self-focus in depression is suggested to be of a persistent, repetitive and self-critical nature, and is conceptualized as ruminative brooding. The role of the medial prefrontal cortex in self-referential processing has been previously emphasized in acute major depression. There is increasing evidence that self-referential processing as well as the cortical midline structures play a major role in the development, course, and treatment response of major depressive disorder. However, the links between self-referential processing, rumination, and the cortical midline structures in depression are still poorly understood. Here, we reviewed brain imaging studies in depressed patients and healthy subjects that have examined these links. Self-referential processing in major depression seems associated with abnormally increased activity of the anterior cortical midline structures. Abnormal interactions between the lateralized task-positive network, and the midline cortical structures of the default mode network, as well as the emotional response network, may underlie the pervasiveness of ruminative brooding. Furthermore, targeting this maladaptive form of rumination and its underlying neural correlates may be key for effective treatment. PMID:24124416

  1. Detection Rates of Cortical Auditory Evoked Potentials at Different Sensation Levels in Infants with Sensory/Neural Hearing Loss and Auditory Neuropathy Spectrum Disorder.

    PubMed

    Gardner-Berry, Kirsty; Chang, Hsiuwen; Ching, Teresa Y C; Hou, Sanna

    2016-02-01

    With the introduction of newborn hearing screening, infants are being diagnosed with hearing loss during the first few months of life. For infants with a sensory/neural hearing loss (SNHL), the audiogram can be estimated objectively using auditory brainstem response (ABR) testing and hearing aids prescribed accordingly. However, for infants with auditory neuropathy spectrum disorder (ANSD) due to the abnormal/absent ABR waveforms, alternative measures of auditory function are needed to assess the need for amplification and evaluate whether aided benefit has been achieved. Cortical auditory evoked potentials (CAEPs) are used to assess aided benefit in infants with hearing loss; however, there is insufficient information regarding the relationship between stimulus audibility and CAEP detection rates. It is also not clear whether CAEP detection rates differ between infants with SNHL and infants with ANSD. This study involved retrospective collection of CAEP, hearing threshold, and hearing aid gain data to investigate the relationship between stimulus audibility and CAEP detection rates. The results demonstrate that increases in stimulus audibility result in an increase in detection rate. For the same range of sensation levels, there was no difference in the detection rates between infants with SNHL and ANSD. PMID:27587922

  2. Hierarchical and serial processing in the spatial auditory cortical pathway is degraded by natural aging

    PubMed Central

    Juarez-Salinas, Dina L.; Engle, James R.; Navarro, Xochi O.; Recanzone, Gregg H.

    2010-01-01

    The compromised abilities to localize sounds and to understand speech are two hallmark deficits in aged individuals. The auditory cortex is necessary for these processes, yet we know little about how normal aging affects these early cortical fields. In this study, we recorded the spatial tuning of single neurons in primary (area A1) and secondary (area CL) auditory cortical areas in young and aged alert rhesus macaques. We found that the neurons of aged animals had greater spontaneous and driven activity, and broader spatial tuning compared to those of younger animals. Importantly, spatial tuning was not sharpened between A1 and CL in aged monkeys as it is in younger monkeys. This implies that a major effect of normal aging is a degradation of the hierarchical processing between serially connected cortical areas, which could be a key contributing mechanism of the general cognitive decline that is commonly observed in normal aging. PMID:21048138

  3. Parallel processing streams for motor output and sensory prediction during action preparation.

    PubMed

    Stenner, Max-Philipp; Bauer, Markus; Heinze, Hans-Jochen; Haggard, Patrick; Dolan, Raymond J

    2015-03-15

    Sensory consequences of one's own actions are perceived as less intense than identical, externally generated stimuli. This is generally taken as evidence for sensory prediction of action consequences. Accordingly, recent theoretical models explain this attenuation by an anticipatory modulation of sensory processing prior to stimulus onset (Roussel et al. 2013) or even action execution (Brown et al. 2013). Experimentally, prestimulus changes that occur in anticipation of self-generated sensations are difficult to disentangle from more general effects of stimulus expectation, attention and task load (performing an action). Here, we show that an established manipulation of subjective agency over a stimulus leads to a predictive modulation in sensory cortex that is independent of these factors. We recorded magnetoencephalography while subjects performed a simple action with either hand and judged the loudness of a tone caused by the action. Effector selection was manipulated by subliminal motor priming. Compatible priming is known to enhance a subjective experience of agency over a consequent stimulus (Chambon and Haggard 2012). In line with this effect on subjective agency, we found stronger sensory attenuation when the action that caused the tone was compatibly primed. This perceptual effect was reflected in a transient phase-locked signal in auditory cortex before stimulus onset and motor execution. Interestingly, this sensory signal emerged at a time when the hemispheric lateralization of motor signals in M1 indicated ongoing effector selection. Our findings confirm theoretical predictions of a sensory modulation prior to self-generated sensations and support the idea that a sensory prediction is generated in parallel to motor output (Walsh and Haggard 2010), before an efference copy becomes available. PMID:25540223

  4. Left hemispheric dominance of vestibular processing indicates lateralization of cortical functions in rats.

    PubMed

    Best, Christoph; Lange, Elena; Buchholz, Hans-Georg; Schreckenberger, Mathias; Reuss, Stefan; Dieterich, Marianne

    2014-11-01

    Lateralization of cortical functions such as speech dominance, handedness and processing of vestibular information are present not only in humans but also in ontogenetic older species, e.g. rats. In human functional imaging studies, the processing of vestibular information was found to be correlated with the hemispherical dominance as determined by the handedness. It is located mainly within the right hemisphere in right handers and within the left hemisphere in left handers. Since dominance of vestibular processing is unknown in animals, our aim was to study the lateralization of cortical processing in a functional imaging study applying small-animal positron emission tomography (microPET) and galvanic vestibular stimulation in an in vivo rat model. The cortical and subcortical network processing vestibular information could be demonstrated and correlated with data from other animal studies. By calculating a lateralization index as well as flipped region of interest analyses, we found that the vestibular processing in rats follows a strong left hemispheric dominance independent from the "handedness" of the animals. These findings support the idea of an early hemispheric specialization of vestibular cortical functions in ontogenetic older species. PMID:23979449

  5. AUDITORY CORTICAL PLASTICITY: DOES IT PROVIDE EVIDENCE FOR COGNITIVE PROCESSING IN THE AUDITORY CORTEX?

    PubMed Central

    Irvine, Dexter R. F.

    2007-01-01

    The past 20 years have seen substantial changes in our view of the nature of the processing carried out in auditory cortex. Some processing of a cognitive nature, previously attributed to higher order “association” areas, is now considered to take place in auditory cortex itself. One argument adduced in support of this view is the evidence indicating a remarkable degree of plasticity in the auditory cortex of adult animals. Such plasticity has been demonstrated in a wide range of paradigms, in which auditory input or the behavioural significance of particular inputs is manipulated. Changes over the same time period in our conceptualization of the receptive fields of cortical neurons, and well-established mechanisms for use-related changes in synaptic function, can account for many forms of auditory cortical plasticity. On the basis of a review of auditory cortical plasticity and its probable mechanisms, it is argued that only plasticity associated with learning tasks provides a strong case for cognitive processing in auditory cortex. Even in this case the evidence is indirect, in that it has not yet been established that the changes in auditory cortex are necessary for behavioural learning and memory. Although other lines of evidence provide convincing support for cognitive processing in auditory cortex, that provided by auditory cortical plasticity remains equivocal. PMID:17303356

  6. Effect of Auditory Motion Velocity on Reaction Time and Cortical Processes

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Getzmann, Stephan

    2009-01-01

    The study investigated the processing of sound motion, employing a psychophysical motion discrimination task in combination with electroencephalography. Following stationary auditory stimulation from a central space position, the onset of left- and rightward motion elicited a specific cortical response that was lateralized to the hemisphere…

  7. Basal forebrain motivational salience signal enhances cortical processing and decision speed.

    PubMed

    Raver, Sylvina M; Lin, Shih-Chieh

    2015-01-01

    The basal forebrain (BF) contains major projections to the cerebral cortex, and plays a well-documented role in arousal, attention, decision-making, and in modulating cortical activity. BF neuronal degeneration is an early event in Alzheimer's disease (AD) and dementias, and occurs in normal cognitive aging. While the BF is best known for its population of cortically projecting cholinergic neurons, the region is anatomically and neurochemically diverse, and also contains prominent populations of non-cholinergic projection neurons. In recent years, increasing attention has been dedicated to these non-cholinergic BF neurons in order to better understand how non-cholinergic BF circuits control cortical processing and behavioral performance. In this review, we focus on a unique population of putative non-cholinergic BF neurons that encodes the motivational salience of stimuli with a robust ensemble bursting response. We review recent studies that describe the specific physiological and functional characteristics of these BF salience-encoding neurons in behaving animals. These studies support the unifying hypothesis whereby BF salience-encoding neurons act as a gain modulation mechanism of the decision-making process to enhance cortical processing of behaviorally relevant stimuli, and thereby facilitate faster and more precise behavioral responses. This function of BF salience-encoding neurons represents a critical component in determining which incoming stimuli warrant an animal's attention, and is therefore a fundamental and early requirement of behavioral flexibility. PMID:26528157

  8. Basal forebrain motivational salience signal enhances cortical processing and decision speed

    PubMed Central

    Raver, Sylvina M.; Lin, Shih-Chieh

    2015-01-01

    The basal forebrain (BF) contains major projections to the cerebral cortex, and plays a well-documented role in arousal, attention, decision-making, and in modulating cortical activity. BF neuronal degeneration is an early event in Alzheimer’s disease (AD) and dementias, and occurs in normal cognitive aging. While the BF is best known for its population of cortically projecting cholinergic neurons, the region is anatomically and neurochemically diverse, and also contains prominent populations of non-cholinergic projection neurons. In recent years, increasing attention has been dedicated to these non-cholinergic BF neurons in order to better understand how non-cholinergic BF circuits control cortical processing and behavioral performance. In this review, we focus on a unique population of putative non-cholinergic BF neurons that encodes the motivational salience of stimuli with a robust ensemble bursting response. We review recent studies that describe the specific physiological and functional characteristics of these BF salience-encoding neurons in behaving animals. These studies support the unifying hypothesis whereby BF salience-encoding neurons act as a gain modulation mechanism of the decision-making process to enhance cortical processing of behaviorally relevant stimuli, and thereby facilitate faster and more precise behavioral responses. This function of BF salience-encoding neurons represents a critical component in determining which incoming stimuli warrant an animal’s attention, and is therefore a fundamental and early requirement of behavioral flexibility. PMID:26528157

  9. A Flight Sensory-Motor to Olfactory Processing Circuit in the Moth Manduca sexta

    PubMed Central

    Bradley, Samual P.; Chapman, Phillip D.; Lizbinski, Kristyn M.; Daly, Kevin C.; Dacks, Andrew M.

    2016-01-01

    Neural circuits projecting information from motor to sensory pathways are common across sensory domains. These circuits typically modify sensory function as a result of motor pattern activation; this is particularly so in cases where the resultant behavior affects the sensory experience or its processing. However, such circuits have not been observed projecting to an olfactory pathway in any species despite well characterized active sampling behaviors that produce reafferent mechanical stimuli, such as sniffing in mammals and wing beating in the moth Manduca sexta. In this study we characterize a circuit that connects a flight sensory-motor center to an olfactory center in Manduca. This circuit consists of a single pair of histamine immunoreactive (HA-ir) neurons that project from the mesothoracic ganglion to innervate a subset of ventral antennal lobe (AL) glomeruli. Furthermore, within the AL we show that the M. sexta histamine B receptor (MsHisClB) is exclusively expressed by a subset of GABAergic and peptidergic LNs, which broadly project to all olfactory glomeruli. Finally, the HA-ir cell pair is present in fifth stage instar larvae; however, the absence of MsHisClB-ir in the larval antennal center indicates that the circuit is incomplete prior to metamorphosis and importantly prior to the expression of flight behavior. Although the functional consequences of this circuit remain unknown, these results provide the first detailed description of a circuit that interconnects an olfactory system with motor centers driving flight behaviors including odor-guided flight. PMID:26909026

  10. Graph analysis of cortical networks reveals complex anatomical communication substrate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zamora-López, Gorka; Zhou, Changsong; Kurths, Jürgen

    2009-03-01

    Sensory information entering the nervous system follows independent paths of processing such that specific features are individually detected. However, sensory perception, awareness, and cognition emerge from the combination of information. Here we have analyzed the corticocortical network of the cat, looking for the anatomical substrate which permits the simultaneous segregation and integration of information in the brain. We find that cortical communications are mainly governed by three topological factors of the underlying network: (i) a large density of connections, (ii) segregation of cortical areas into clusters, and (iii) the presence of highly connected hubs aiding the multisensory processing and integration. Statistical analysis of the shortest paths reveals that, while information is highly accessible to all cortical areas, the complexity of cortical information processing may arise from the rich and intricate alternative paths in which areas can influence each other.

  11. A Pilot Study of Integrated Listening Systems for Children with Sensory Processing Problems

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Schoen, Sarah A.; Miller, Lucy J.; Sullivan, Jillian

    2015-01-01

    This pilot study explored the effects of Integrated Listening Systems (iLs) Focus Series on individualized parent goals for children with sensory processing impairments. A nonconcurrent multiple baseline, repeated measure across participants, single-case study design was employed (n = 7). The 40-session intervention was delivered at home and in…

  12. High pressure processing with hot sauce flavoring enhances sensory quality for raw oysters (Crassostrea virginica)

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    This study evaluated the feasibility of flavoring raw oysters by placing them under pressure in the presence of selected flavorings. Hand-shucked raw oysters were processed at high pressure (600 MPa), in the presence or absence of (Sriracha®) flavoring, and evaluated by a trained sensory panel 3 an...

  13. The Relationship between Sensory Processing Patterns and Behavioural Responsiveness in Autistic Disorder: A Pilot Study

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Baker, Amy E. Z.; Lane, Alison; Angley, Manya T.; Young, Robyn L.

    2008-01-01

    Sensory processing (SP) difficulties have been reported in as many as 95% of children with autism, however, empirical research examining the existence of specific patterns of SP difficulties within this population is scarce. Furthermore, little attention has been given to examining the relationship between SP and either the core symptoms or…

  14. Windows into Sensory Integration and Rates in Language Processing: Insights from Signed and Spoken Languages

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hwang, So-One K.

    2011-01-01

    This dissertation explores the hypothesis that language processing proceeds in "windows" that correspond to representational units, where sensory signals are integrated according to time-scales that correspond to the rate of the input. To investigate universal mechanisms, a comparison of signed and spoken languages is necessary. Underlying the…

  15. Atypical Sensory Processing in Adolescents with an Autism Spectrum Disorder and Their Non-Affected Siblings

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    De la Marche, Wouter; Steyaert, Jean; Noens, Ilse

    2012-01-01

    Atypical sensory processing is common in autism spectrum disorders (ASD). Specific profiles have been proposed in different age groups, but no study has focused specifically on adolescents. Identifying traits of ASD that are shared by individuals with ASD and their non-affected family members can shed light on the genetic underpinnings of ASD.…

  16. Are Sensory Processing Features Associated with Depressive Symptoms in Boys with an ASD?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bitsika, Vicki; Sharpley, Christopher F.; Mills, Richard

    2016-01-01

    The association between Sensory Processing Features (SPF) and depressive symptoms was investigated at two levels in 150 young males (6-18 years) with an ASD. First, a significant correlation was found between SPF and total depressive symptom scores. Second, different aspects of SPF significantly predicted different depressive symptom factors, with…

  17. Sensory Processing Dysfunctions as Expressed among Children with Different Severities of Intellectual Developmental Disabilities

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Engel-Yeger, Batya; Hardal-Nasser, Reem; Gal, Eynat

    2011-01-01

    High frequency of sensory processing dysfunctions (SPD) is prevalent among children with intellectual developmental disabilities and contributes to their maladaptive behaviors. However, the knowledge about the expressions of SPD in different levels of IDD severity is limited. As SPD may reduce adaptive responses and limit participation, this…

  18. Emotional and Behavioral Problems in Preschool Children with Autism: Relationship with Sensory Processing Dysfunction

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Tseng, Mei-Hui; Fu, Chung-Pei; Cermak, Sharon A.; Lu, Lu; Shieh, Jeng-Yi

    2011-01-01

    This study aimed to investigate the sensory processing (SP) dysfunction and emotional and behavioral problems in preschool children with autism and then examine the relationship between the SP dysfunction and emotional and behavioral problems. The parents of 112 children aged 48-84 months (67 with autism; 45 age-matched typically developing)…

  19. Evidence of a sensory processing unit in the mammalian macula

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Chimento, T. C.; Ross, M. D.

    1996-01-01

    We cut serial sections through the medial part of the rat vestibular macula for transmission electron microscopic (TEM) examination, computer-assisted 3-D reconstruction, and compartmental modeling. The ultrastructural research showed that many primary vestibular neurons have an unmyelinated segment, often branched, that extends between the heminode (putative site of the spike initiation zone) and the expanded terminal(s) (calyx, calyces). These segments, termed the neuron branches, and the calyces frequently have spine-like processes of various dimensions with bouton endings that morphologically are afferent, efferent, or reciprocal to other macular neural elements. The major questions posed by this study were whether small details of morphology, such as the size and location of neuronal processes or synapses, could influence the output of a vestibular afferent, and whether a knowledge of morphological details could guide the selection of values for simulation parameters. The conclusions from our simulations are (1) values of 5.0 k omega cm2 for membrane resistivity and 1.0 nS for synaptic conductance yield simulations that best match published physiological results; (2) process morphology has little effect on orthodromic spread of depolarization from the head (bouton) to the spike initiation zone (SIZ); (3) process morphology has no effect on antidromic spread of depolarization to the process head; (4) synapses do not sum linearly; (5) synapses are electrically close to the SIZ; and (6) all whole-cell simulations should be run with an active SIZ.

  20. Evidence of a sensory processing unit in the mammalian macula.

    PubMed

    Chimento, T C; Ross, M D

    1996-06-19

    We cut serial sections through the medial part of the rat vestibular macula for transmission electron microscopic (TEM) examination, computer-assisted 3-D reconstruction, and compartmental modeling. The ultrastructural research showed that many primary vestibular neurons have an unmyelinated segment, often branched, that extends between the heminode (putative site of the spike initiation zone) and the expanded terminal(s) (calyx, calyces). These segments, termed the neuron branches, and the calyces frequently have spine-like processes of various dimensions with bouton endings that morphologically are afferent, efferent, or reciprocal to other macular neural elements. The major questions posed by this study were whether small details of morphology, such as the size and location of neuronal processes or synapses, could influence the output of a vestibular afferent, and whether a knowledge of morphological details could guide the selection of values for simulation parameters. The conclusions from our simulations are (1) values of 5.0 k omega cm2 for membrane resistivity and 1.0 nS for synaptic conductance yield simulations that best match published physiological results; (2) process morphology has little effect on orthodromic spread of depolarization from the head (bouton) to the spike initiation zone (SIZ); (3) process morphology has no effect on antidromic spread of depolarization to the process head; (4) synapses do not sum linearly; (5) synapses are electrically close to the SIZ; and (6) all whole-cell simulations should be run with an active SIZ. PMID:8694415

  1. White Matter Microstructure is Associated with Auditory and Tactile Processing in Children with and without Sensory Processing Disorder

    PubMed Central

    Chang, Yi-Shin; Gratiot, Mathilde; Owen, Julia P.; Brandes-Aitken, Anne; Desai, Shivani S.; Hill, Susanna S.; Arnett, Anne B.; Harris, Julia; Marco, Elysa J.; Mukherjee, Pratik

    2016-01-01

    Sensory processing disorders (SPDs) affect up to 16% of school-aged children, and contribute to cognitive and behavioral deficits impacting affected individuals and their families. While sensory processing differences are now widely recognized in children with autism, children with sensory-based dysfunction who do not meet autism criteria based on social communication deficits remain virtually unstudied. In a previous pilot diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) study, we demonstrated that boys with SPD have altered white matter microstructure primarily affecting the posterior cerebral tracts, which subserve sensory processing and integration. This disrupted microstructural integrity, measured as reduced white matter fractional anisotropy (FA), correlated with parent report measures of atypical sensory behavior. In this present study, we investigate white matter microstructure as it relates to tactile and auditory function in depth with a larger, mixed-gender cohort of children 8–12 years of age. We continue to find robust alterations of posterior white matter microstructure in children with SPD relative to typically developing children (TDC), along with more spatially distributed alterations. We find strong correlations of FA with both parent report and direct measures of tactile and auditory processing across children, with the direct assessment measures of tactile and auditory processing showing a stronger and more continuous mapping to the underlying white matter integrity than the corresponding parent report measures. Based on these findings of microstructure as a neural correlate of sensory processing ability, diffusion MRI merits further investigation as a tool to find biomarkers for diagnosis, prognosis and treatment response in children with SPD. To our knowledge, this work is the first to demonstrate associations of directly measured tactile and non-linguistic auditory function with white matter microstructural integrity – not just in children with SPD, but

  2. The superiority in voice processing of the blind arises from neural plasticity at sensory processing stages.

    PubMed

    Föcker, Julia; Best, Anna; Hölig, Cordula; Röder, Brigitte

    2012-07-01

    Blind people rely much more on voices compared to sighted individuals when identifying other people. Previous research has suggested a faster processing of auditory input in blind individuals than sighted controls and an enhanced activation of temporal cortical regions during voice processing. The present study used event-related potentials (ERPs) to single out the sub-processes of auditory person identification that change and allow for superior voice processing after congenital blindness. A priming paradigm was employed in which two successive voices (S1 and S2) of either the same (50% of the trials) or different actors were presented. Congenitally blind and matched sighted participants made an old-young decision on the S2. During the pre-experimental familiarization with the stimuli, congenitally blind individuals showed faster learning rates than sighted controls. Reaction times were shorter in person-congruent trials than in person-incongruent trials in both groups. ERPs to S2 stimuli in person-incongruent as compared to person-congruent trials were significantly enhanced at early processing stages (100-160 ms) in congenitally blind participants only. A later negative ERP effect (>200 ms) was found in both groups. The scalp topographies of the experimental effects were characterized by a central and parietal distribution in the sighted but a more posterior distribution in the congenitally blind. These results provide evidence for an improvement of early voice processing stages and a reorganization of the person identification system as a neural correlate of compensatory behavioral improvements following congenital blindness. PMID:22588063

  3. Adaptation to sensory input tunes visual cortex to criticality

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shew, Woodrow L.; Clawson, Wesley P.; Pobst, Jeff; Karimipanah, Yahya; Wright, Nathaniel C.; Wessel, Ralf

    2015-08-01

    A long-standing hypothesis at the interface of physics and neuroscience is that neural networks self-organize to the critical point of a phase transition, thereby optimizing aspects of sensory information processing. This idea is partially supported by strong evidence for critical dynamics observed in the cerebral cortex, but the impact of sensory input on these dynamics is largely unknown. Thus, the foundations of this hypothesis--the self-organization process and how it manifests during strong sensory input--remain unstudied experimentally. Here we show in visual cortex and in a computational model that strong sensory input initially elicits cortical network dynamics that are not critical, but adaptive changes in the network rapidly tune the system to criticality. This conclusion is based on observations of multifaceted scaling laws predicted to occur at criticality. Our findings establish sensory adaptation as a self-organizing mechanism that maintains criticality in visual cortex during sensory information processing.

  4. The signal processing architecture underlying subjective reports of sensory awareness

    PubMed Central

    Maniscalco, Brian; Lau, Hakwan

    2016-01-01

    What is the relationship between perceptual information processing and subjective perceptual experience? Empirical dissociations between stimulus identification performance and subjective reports of stimulus visibility are crucial for shedding light on this question. We replicated a finding that metacontrast masking can produce such a dissociation (Lau and Passingham, 2006), and report a novel finding that this paradigm can also dissociate stimulus identification performance from the efficacy with which visibility ratings predict task performance. We explored various hypotheses about the relationship between perceptual task performance and visibility rating by implementing them in computational models and using formal model comparison techniques to assess which ones best captured the unusual patterns in the data. The models fell into three broad categories: Single Channel models, which hold that task performance and visibility ratings are based on the same underlying source of information; Dual Channel models, which hold that there are two independent processing streams that differentially contribute to task performance and visibility rating; and Hierarchical models, which hold that a late processing stage generates visibility ratings by evaluating the quality of early perceptual processing. Taking into account the quality of data fitting and model complexity, we found that Hierarchical models perform best at capturing the observed behavioral dissociations. Because current theories of visual awareness map well onto these different model structures, a formal comparison between them is a powerful approach for arbitrating between the different theories. PMID:27499929

  5. Sensory Temporal Processing in Adults with Early Hearing Loss

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Heming, Joanne E.; Brown, Lenora N.

    2005-01-01

    This study examined tactile and visual temporal processing in adults with early loss of hearing. The tactile task consisted of punctate stimulations that were delivered to one or both hands by a mechanical tactile stimulator. Pairs of light emitting diodes were presented on a display for visual stimulation. Responses consisted of YES or NO…

  6. Effect of radiation processing on nutritional, functional, sensory and antioxidant properties of red kidney beans

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Marathe, S. A.; Deshpande, R.; Khamesra, Arohi; Ibrahim, Geeta; Jamdar, Sahayog N.

    2016-08-01

    In the present study dry red kidney beans (Phaseolus vulgaris), irradiated in the dose range of 0.25-10.0 kGy were evaluated for proximate composition, functional, sensory and antioxidant properties. Radiation processing up to 10 kGy did not affect proximate composition, hydration capacity and free fatty acid value. All the sensory attributes were unaffected at 1.0 kGy dose. The dose of 10 kGy, showed lower values for odor and taste, however, they were in acceptable range. Significant improvement in textural quality and reduction in cooking time was observed at dose of 10 kGy. Antioxidant activity of radiation processed samples was also assessed after normal processing such as soaking and pressure cooking. Both phenolic content and antioxidant activity evaluated in terms of DPPH free radical scavenging assay and inhibition in lipid peroxidation using rabbit erythrocyte ghost system, were marginally improved (5-10%) at the dose of 10 kGy in dry and cooked samples. During storage of samples for six months, no significant change was observed in sensory, cooking and antioxidant properties. Thus, radiation treatment of 1 kGy can be applied to get extended shelf life of kidney beans with improved functional properties without impairing bioactivity; nutritional quality and sensory property.

  7. Early sensory processing in right hemispheric stroke patients with and without extinction.

    PubMed

    de Haan, Bianca; Stoll, Tine; Karnath, Hans-Otto

    2015-07-01

    While extinction is most commonly viewed as an attentional disorder and not as a consequence of a failure to process contralesional sensory information, it has been speculated that early sensory processing of contralesional targets in extinction patients might not be fully normal. We used a masked visuo-motor response priming paradigm to study the influence of both contralesional and ipsilesional peripheral subliminal prime stimuli on central target performance, allowing us to compare the strength of the early sensory processing associated with these prime stimuli between right brain damaged patients with and without extinction as well as healthy elderly subjects. We found that the effect of an informative subliminal prime in the left contralesional visual field on central target performance was significantly reduced in both right brain damaged patients with and without extinction. The results suggest that a low-level early sensory deterioration of the neural representation for contralesional prime stimuli is a general consequence of right hemispheric brain damage unrelated to the presence or absence of extinction. This suggests that the presence of a spatial bias against contralesional information is not sufficient to elicit extinction. For extinction to occur, this spatial bias might need to be accompanied by a pathological (non-directional) reduction of attentional capacity. PMID:26002755

  8. Cortical oscillations and speech processing: emerging computational principles and operations

    PubMed Central

    Giraud, Anne-Lise; Poeppel, David

    2015-01-01

    Neuronal oscillations are ubiquitous in the brain and may contribute to cognition in several ways: for example, by segregating information and organizing spike timing. Recent data show that delta, theta and gamma oscillations are specifically engaged by the multi-timescale, quasi-rhythmic properties of speech and can track its dynamics. We argue that they are foundational in speech and language processing, ‘packaging’ incoming information into units of the appropriate temporal granularity. Such stimulus-brain alignment arguably results from auditory and motor tuning throughout the evolution of speech and language and constitutes a natural model system allowing auditory research to make a unique contribution to the issue of how neural oscillatory activity affects human cognition. PMID:22426255

  9. The influence of posttraumatic stress disorder, depression, and sensory processing patterns on occupational engagement: a case study.

    PubMed

    Champagne, Tina

    2011-01-01

    The purpose of this article is to provide a brief overview of how Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), Depression, and Sensory Processing patterns influence occupational engagement, including work performance. Interventions and outcomes of the Sensory Modulation Program and approaches from Cognitive Behavior Therapy (CBT) are reviewed through single case exploration with a 42 year-old woman in outpatient services. The marked increase in occupational engagement and improved work performance in this single case review demonstrates the need for more research on the use of the Sensory Modulation Program and approaches from CBT with populations with PTSD, Depression, and Sensory Processing disorder. PMID:21248421

  10. The Relationship between Sensory Processing Difficulties and Leisure Activity Preference of Children with Different Types of ADHD

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Engel-Yeger, Batya; Ziv-On, Daniella

    2011-01-01

    Sensory processing difficulties (SPD) are prevalent among children with ADHD. Yet, the question whether different SPD characterize children with different types of ADHD has not received enough attention in the literature. The current study characterized sensory processing difficulties (SPD) of children with different types of ADHD and explored the…

  11. Correlations of Sensory Processing and Visual Organization Ability with Participation in School-Aged Children with Down Syndrome

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wuang, Yee-Pay; Su, Chwen-Yng

    2011-01-01

    Previous work has highlighted delays and differences in cognitive, language, and sensorimotor functions in children diagnosed with Down syndrome (DS). However, sensory processing and visual organization abilities have not been well-examined in DS to date. This study aimed to investigate the developmental profile of sensory processing and visual…

  12. Processing of Speech Signals for Physical and Sensory Disabilities

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Levitt, Harry

    1995-10-01

    Assistive technology involving voice communication is used primarily by people who are deaf, hard of hearing, or who have speech and/or language disabilities. It is also used to a lesser extent by people with visual or motor disabilities. A very wide range of devices has been developed for people with hearing loss. These devices can be categorized not only by the modality of stimulation [i.e., auditory, visual, tactile, or direct electrical stimulation of the auditory nerve (auditory-neural)] but also in terms of the degree of speech processing that is used. At least four such categories can be distinguished: assistive devices (a) that are not designed specifically for speech, (b) that take the average characteristics of speech into account, (c) that process articulatory or phonetic characteristics of speech, and (d) that embody some degree of automatic speech recognition. Assistive devices for people with speech and/or language disabilities typically involve some form of speech synthesis or symbol generation for severe forms of language disability. Speech synthesis is also used in text-to-speech systems for sightless persons. Other applications of assistive technology involving voice communication include voice control of wheelchairs and other devices for people with mobility disabilities.

  13. Spatial frequency processing in scene-selective cortical regions.

    PubMed

    Kauffmann, Louise; Ramanoël, Stephen; Guyader, Nathalie; Chauvin, Alan; Peyrin, Carole

    2015-05-15

    Visual analysis begins with the parallel extraction of different attributes at different spatial frequencies. Low spatial frequencies (LSF) convey coarse information and are characterized by high luminance contrast, while high spatial frequencies (HSF) convey fine details and are characterized by low luminance contrast. In the present fMRI study, we examined how scene-selective regions-the parahippocampal place area (PPA), the retrosplenial cortex (RSC) and the occipital place area (OPA)-responded to spatial frequencies when contrast was either equalized or not equalized across spatial frequencies. Participants performed a categorization task on LSF, HSF and non-filtered scenes belonging to two different categories (indoors and outdoors). We either left contrast across scenes untouched, or equalized it using a root-mean-square contrast normalization. We found that when contrast remained unmodified, LSF and NF scenes elicited greater activation than HSF scenes in the PPA. However, when contrast was equalized across spatial frequencies, the PPA was selective to HFS. This suggests that PPA activity relies on an interaction between spatial frequency and contrast in scenes. In the RSC, LSF and NF elicited greater response than HSF scenes when contrast was not modified, while no effect of spatial frequencies appeared when contrast was equalized across filtered scenes, suggesting that the RSC is sensitive to high-contrast information. Finally, we observed selective activation of the OPA in response to HSF, irrespective of contrast manipulation. These results provide new insights into how scene-selective areas operate during scene processing. PMID:25754068

  14. Amyloid precursor protein expression and processing are differentially regulated during cortical neuron differentiation

    PubMed Central

    Bergström, Petra; Agholme, Lotta; Nazir, Faisal Hayat; Satir, Tugce Munise; Toombs, Jamie; Wellington, Henrietta; Strandberg, Joakim; Bontell, Thomas Olsson; Kvartsberg, Hlin; Holmström, Maria; Boreström, Cecilia; Simonsson, Stina; Kunath, Tilo; Lindahl, Anders; Blennow, Kaj; Hanse, Eric; Portelius, Erik; Wray, Selina; Zetterberg, Henrik

    2016-01-01

    Amyloid precursor protein (APP) and its cleavage product amyloid β (Aβ) have been thoroughly studied in Alzheimer’s disease. However, APP also appears to be important for neuronal development. Differentiation of induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) towards cortical neurons enables in vitro mechanistic studies on human neuronal development. Here, we investigated expression and proteolytic processing of APP during differentiation of human iPSCs towards cortical neurons over a 100-day period. APP expression remained stable during neuronal differentiation, whereas APP processing changed. α-Cleaved soluble APP (sAPPα) was secreted early during differentiation, from neuronal progenitors, while β-cleaved soluble APP (sAPPβ) was first secreted after deep-layer neurons had formed. Short Aβ peptides, including Aβ1-15/16, peaked during the progenitor stage, while processing shifted towards longer peptides, such as Aβ1-40/42, when post-mitotic neurons appeared. This indicates that APP processing is regulated throughout differentiation of cortical neurons and that amyloidogenic APP processing, as reflected by Aβ1-40/42, is associated with mature neuronal phenotypes. PMID:27383650

  15. Imaging cortical dynamics of language processing with the event-related optical signal.

    PubMed

    Tse, Chun-Yu; Lee, Chia-Lin; Sullivan, Jason; Garnsey, Susan M; Dell, Gary S; Fabiani, Monica; Gratton, Gabriele

    2007-10-23

    Language processing involves the rapid interaction of multiple brain regions. The study of its neurophysiological bases would therefore benefit from neuroimaging techniques combining both good spatial and good temporal resolution. Here we use the event-related optical signal (EROS), a recently developed imaging method, to reveal rapid interactions between left superior/middle temporal cortices (S/MTC) and inferior frontal cortices (IFC) during the processing of semantically or syntactically anomalous sentences. Participants were presented with sentences of these types intermixed with nonanomalous control sentences and were required to judge their acceptability. ERPs were recorded simultaneously with EROS and showed the typical activities that are elicited when processing anomalous stimuli: the N400 and the P600 for semantic and syntactic anomalies, respectively. The EROS response to semantically anomalous words showed increased activity in the S/MTC (corresponding in time with the N400), followed by IFC activity. Syntactically anomalous words evoked a similar sequence, with a temporal-lobe EROS response (corresponding in time with the P600), followed by frontal activity. However, the S/MTC activity corresponding to a semantic anomaly was more ventral than that corresponding to a syntactic anomaly. These data suggest that activation related to anomaly processing in sentences proceeds from temporal to frontal brain regions for both semantic and syntactic anomalies. This first EROS study investigating language processing shows that EROS can be used to image rapid interactions across cortical areas. PMID:17942677

  16. Imaging cortical dynamics of language processing with the event-related optical signal

    PubMed Central

    Tse, Chun-Yu; Lee, Chia-Lin; Sullivan, Jason; Garnsey, Susan M.; Dell, Gary S.; Fabiani, Monica; Gratton, Gabriele

    2007-01-01

    Language processing involves the rapid interaction of multiple brain regions. The study of its neurophysiological bases would therefore benefit from neuroimaging techniques combining both good spatial and good temporal resolution. Here we use the event-related optical signal (EROS), a recently developed imaging method, to reveal rapid interactions between left superior/middle temporal cortices (S/MTC) and inferior frontal cortices (IFC) during the processing of semantically or syntactically anomalous sentences. Participants were presented with sentences of these types intermixed with nonanomalous control sentences and were required to judge their acceptability. ERPs were recorded simultaneously with EROS and showed the typical activities that are elicited when processing anomalous stimuli: the N400 and the P600 for semantic and syntactic anomalies, respectively. The EROS response to semantically anomalous words showed increased activity in the S/MTC (corresponding in time with the N400), followed by IFC activity. Syntactically anomalous words evoked a similar sequence, with a temporal-lobe EROS response (corresponding in time with the P600), followed by frontal activity. However, the S/MTC activity corresponding to a semantic anomaly was more ventral than that corresponding to a syntactic anomaly. These data suggest that activation related to anomaly processing in sentences proceeds from temporal to frontal brain regions for both semantic and syntactic anomalies. This first EROS study investigating language processing shows that EROS can be used to image rapid interactions across cortical areas. PMID:17942677

  17. A role for bombesin in sensory processing in the spinal cord.

    PubMed

    O'Donohue, T L; Massari, V J; Pazoles, C J; Chronwall, B M; Shults, C W; Quirion, R; Chase, T N; Moody, T W

    1984-12-01

    Bombesin (BN)-containing neuronal processes were demonstrated in laminae I and II of the dorsal horn of the cat, rat, and mouse spinal cord by immunocytochemistry and radioimmunoassay. Dorsal rhizotomy in the cat resulted in a marked decrease in BN immunoreactivity in the dorsal horn indicating that BN is contained in primary sensory afferents. BN-binding sites were also localized in superficial laminae of the dorsal horn. The presence of both BN and BN-binding sites in the dorsal horn suggested that BN may be involved in sensory processing in the spinal cord. Consistent with this hypothesis, it was demonstrated that an injection of BN into the spinal cord caused a biting and scratching response indicative of sensory stimulation. The effect was similar to that observed after injection of substance P into the cord with the exception that the BN effect lasted about 100 times longer than that induced by substance P. Taken together, these data indicate that BN may be a neurotransmitter of primary sensory afferents to the spinal cord. PMID:6094746

  18. Prefrontal cortical activation during arithmetic processing differentiated by cultures: a preliminary fNIRS study.

    PubMed

    Yu, Juanghong; Pan, Yaozhang; Ang, Kai Keng; Guan, Cuntai; Leamy, Darren J

    2012-01-01

    Understanding the neural basis of arithmetic processes could play an important role in improving mathematical education. This study investigates the prefrontal cortical activation among subjects from different cultural backgrounds while performing two difficulty levels of mental arithmetic tasks. The prefrontal cortical activation is measured using a high density 206 channels fNIRS. 8 healthy subjects, consisting of 5 Asians and 3 Europeans, are included in this study. NIRS-SPM is used to compute hemoglobin response changes and generate brain activation map based on two contrasts defined as Easy versus Rest and Hard versus Rest. Differences between the Asian group and the European group are found in both contrasts of Easy versus Rest and Hard versus Rest. The results suggest people with different cultural backgrounds engage different neural pathways during arithmetic processing. PMID:23366981

  19. Children with dyslexia show cortical hyperactivation in response to increasing literacy processing demands

    PubMed Central

    Morken, Frøydis; Helland, Turid; Hugdahl, Kenneth; Specht, Karsten

    2014-01-01

    This fMRI study aimed to examine how differences in literacy processing demands may affect cortical activation patterns in 11- to 12-year-old children with dyslexia as compared to children with typical reading skills. Eleven children with and 18 without dyslexia were assessed using a reading paradigm based on different stages of literacy development. In the analyses, six regions showed an interaction effect between group and condition in a factorial ANOVA. These regions were selected as regions of interest (ROI) for further analyses. Overall, the dyslexia group showed cortical hyperactivation compared to the typical group. The difference between the groups tended to increase with increasing processing demands. Differences in cortical activation were not reflected in in-scanner reading performance. The six regions further grouped into three patterns, which are discussed in terms of processing demands, compensatory mechanisms, orthography and contextual facilitation. We conclude that the observed hyperactivation is chiefly a result of compensatory activity, modulated by other factors. PMID:25566160

  20. Auditory object salience: human cortical processing of non-biological action sounds and their acoustic signal attributes

    PubMed Central

    Lewis, James W.; Talkington, William J.; Tallaksen, Katherine C.; Frum, Chris A.

    2012-01-01

    Whether viewed or heard, an object in action can be segmented as a distinct salient event based on a number of different sensory cues. In the visual system, several low-level attributes of an image are processed along parallel hierarchies, involving intermediate stages wherein gross-level object form and/or motion features are extracted prior to stages that show greater specificity for different object categories (e.g., people, buildings, or tools). In the auditory system, though relying on a rather different set of low-level signal attributes, meaningful real-world acoustic events and “auditory objects” can also be readily distinguished from background scenes. However, the nature of the acoustic signal attributes or gross-level perceptual features that may be explicitly processed along intermediate cortical processing stages remain poorly understood. Examining mechanical and environmental action sounds, representing two distinct non-biological categories of action sources, we had participants assess the degree to which each sound was perceived as object-like versus scene-like. We re-analyzed data from two of our earlier functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) task paradigms (Engel et al., 2009) and found that scene-like action sounds preferentially led to activation along several midline cortical structures, but with strong dependence on listening task demands. In contrast, bilateral foci along the superior temporal gyri (STG) showed parametrically increasing activation to action sounds rated as more “object-like,” independent of sound category or task demands. Moreover, these STG regions also showed parametric sensitivity to spectral structure variations (SSVs) of the action sounds—a quantitative measure of change in entropy of the acoustic signals over time—and the right STG additionally showed parametric sensitivity to measures of mean entropy and harmonic content of the environmental sounds. Analogous to the visual system, intermediate stages

  1. The impact of systemic cortical alterations on perception

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Zheng

    2011-12-01

    Perception is the process of transmitting and interpreting sensory information, and the primary somatosensory (SI) area in the human cortex is the main sensory receptive area for the sensation of touch. The elaborate neuroanatomical connectivity that subserves the neuronal communication between adjacent and near-adjacent regions within sensory cortex has been widely recognized to be essential to normal sensory function. As a result, systemic cortical alterations that impact the cortical regional interaction, as associated with many neurological disorders, are expected to have significant impact on sensory perception. Recently, our research group has developed a novel sensory diagnostic system that employs quantitative sensory testing methods and is able to non-invasively assess central nervous system healthy status. The intent of this study is to utilize quantitative sensory testing methods that were designed to generate discriminable perception to objectively and quantitatively assess the impacts of different conditions on human sensory information processing capacity. The correlation between human perceptions with observations from animal research enables a better understanding of the underlying neurophysiology of human perception. Additional findings on different subject populations provide valuable insight of the underlying mechanisms for the development and maintenance of different neurological diseases. During the course of the study, several protocols were designed and utilized. And this set of sensory-based perceptual metrics was employed to study the effects of different conditions (non-noxious thermal stimulation, chronic pain stage, and normal aging) on sensory perception. It was found that these conditions result in significant deviations of the subjects' tactile information processing capacities from normal values. Although the observed shift of sensory detection sensitivity could be a result of enhanced peripheral activity, the changes in the effects

  2. Differential columnar processing in local circuits of barrel and insular cortices.

    PubMed

    Sato, Hajime; Shimanuki, Yasushi; Saito, Mitsuru; Toyoda, Hiroki; Nokubi, Takashi; Maeda, Yoshinobu; Yamamoto, Takashi; Kang, Youngnam

    2008-03-19

    The columnar organization is most apparent in the whisker barrel cortex but seems less apparent in the gustatory insular cortex. We addressed here whether there are any differences between the two cortices in columnar information processing by comparing the spatiotemporal patterns of excitation spread in the two cortices using voltage-sensitive dye imaging. In contrast to the well known excitation spread in the horizontal direction in layer II/III induced in the barrel cortex by layer IV stimulation, the excitation caused in the insular cortex by stimulation of layer IV spread bidirectionally in the vertical direction into layers II/III and V/VI, displaying a columnar image pattern. Bicuculline or picrotoxin markedly extended the horizontal excitation spread in layer II/III in the barrel cortex, leading to a generation of excitation in the underlying layer V/VI, whereas those markedly increased the amplitude of optical responses throughout the whole column in the insular cortex, subsequently widening the columnar image pattern. Such synchronous activities as revealed by the horizontal and vertical excitation spreads were consistently induced in the barrel and insular cortices, respectively, even by stimulation of different layers with varying intensities. Thus, a unique functional column existed in the insular cortex, in which intracolumnar communication between the superficial and deep layers was prominent, and GABA(A) action is involved in the inhibition of the intracolumnar communication in contrast to its involvement in intercolumnar lateral inhibition in the barrel cortex. These results suggest that the columnar information processing may not be universal across the different cortical areas. PMID:18354011

  3. Sensorial analysis evaluation in cereal bars preserved by ionizing radiation processing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Villavicencio, A. L. C. H.; Araújo, M. M.; Fanaro, G. B.; Rela, P. R.; Mancini-Filho, J.

    2007-11-01

    Gamma-rays utilized as a food-processing treatment to eliminate insect contamination is well established in food industries. Recent troubles in Brazilian cereal bars commercialization require a special consumer's attention because some products were contaminated by insects. To solve the problem, food-irradiation treatment was utilized as a safe and effective solution. The final product was free of insect contamination. The aim of this study was to determine the best radiation dose processing utilized to disinfestations and detect some change on sensorial characteristic by sensorial analysis in cereal bars. In this study, three different kinds of cereal bars were purchased in São Paulo (Brazil) in supermarkets and irradiated with 1.0, 2.0 and 3.0 kGy at "Instituto de Pesquisas Energéticas e Nucleares" (IPEN-CNEN/SP). The samples were treated with ionizing radiation using a 60Co gamma-ray facility (Gammacell 220, A.E.C.L.). That radiation doses were used successfully as an anti-insect treatment in the cereal bars, since in some food industries doses up to 3.0 kGy are used to guarantee at least a dose of 1.0 kGy in internal cereal bars package. Sensorial analysis was necessary since cereal bars contain ingredients very sensitive to ionizing radiation process.

  4. Propofol facilitates excitatory inputs of cerebellar Purkinje cells by depressing molecular layer interneuron activity during sensory information processing in vivo in mice.

    PubMed

    He, Yuan-Yuan; Jin, Ri; Jin, Wen-Zhe; Liu, Heng; Chu, Chun-Ping; Qiu, De-Lai

    2015-10-21

    Propofol is a rapid-acting sedative-hypnotic medication that has been widely used for the induction and maintenance of anesthesia; it has specific actions on different areas of the brain, such as sensory information transmission in the somatosensory cortex. However, the effects of propofol on the properties of sensory stimulation-evoked responses in cerebellar Purkinje cells (PCs) are currently unclear. In the present study, we studied the effects of propofol on facial stimulation-evoked responses in cerebellar PCs and molecular level interneurons (MLIs) in urethane-anesthetized mice using electrophysiological and pharmacological methods. Our results showed that cerebellar surface perfusion with propofol induced a decrease in the amplitude of the gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA)-ergic component (P1) in a dose-dependent manner, but induced a significant increase in the amplitude of the excitatory response (N1). The IC50 of propofol-induced inhibition of P1 was 217.3 μM. In contrast, propofol (100 μM) depressed the spontaneous activity and tactile-evoked responses in MLIs. In addition, blocking GABA(A) receptor activity abolished the propofol (300 μM)-induced inhibition of the tactile-evoked inhibitory response and the increase in the sensory stimulation-evoked spike firing rate of PCs. These results indicated that propofol depressed the tactile stimulation-evoked spike firing of MLIs, resulting in a decrease in the amplitude of the tactile-evoked inhibitory response and an increase in the amplitude of the excitatory response in the cerebellar PCs of mice. Our results suggest that propofol modulates sensory information processing in cerebellar cortical PCs and MLIs through the activation of GABA(A) receptors. PMID:26317477

  5. Feasibility of event-related potential methodology to evaluate changes in cortical processing after rehabilitation in children with cerebral palsy: A pilot study

    PubMed Central

    Maitre, Nathalie L.; Henderson, Gena; Gogliotti, Shirley; Pearson, Jennifer; Simmons, Ashley; Wang, Lu; Slaughter, James C.; Key, Alexandra P.

    2016-01-01

    This study examined the feasibility of using event-related potentials (ERPs) to measure changes in cortical processing following an established rehabilitative intervention (constraint-induced movement therapy, CIMT) for children with cerebral palsy (CP). Sixteen participants with a diagnosis of hemiparetic CP, with a median age of 6 years, were assessed pre and immediately post CIMT and at 6-month follow-up, using a picture–word match/mismatch discrimination task and standard neurobehavioral measures. Intervention effects were evident in improved performance on behavioral tests of sensory and motor function and the increased mean ERP amplitude of the N400 match/mismatch response on the side ipsilateral to the lesion. These effects were maintained 6 months after the intervention. No such changes were observed on the side contralateral to the lesion. This research suggests that ERPs can measure rehabilitation-induced changes in neural function in children with CP. PMID:24953907

  6. Thalamic control of sensory selection in divided attention

    PubMed Central

    Wimmer, Ralf D.; Schmitt, L. Ian; Davidson, Thomas J.; Nakajima, Miho; Deisseroth, Karl; Halassa, Michael M.

    2015-01-01

    How the brain selects appropriate sensory inputs and suppresses distractors is a central unsolved mystery in neuroscience. Given the well-established role of prefrontal cortex (PFC) in executive function1, its interactions with sensory cortical areas during attention have been hypothesized to control sensory selection2–5. To test this idea and more generally dissect the circuits underlying sensory selection, we developed a cross-modal divided attention task in mice enabling genetic access to this cognitive process. By optogenetically perturbing PFC function in a temporally-precise window, the ability of mice to appropriately select between conflicting visual and auditory stimuli was diminished. Surprisingly, equivalent sensory thalamo-cortical manipulations showed that behavior was causally dependent on PFC interactions with sensory thalamus, not cortex. Consistent with this notion, we found neurons of the visual thalamic reticular nucleus (visTRN) to exhibit PFC-dependent changes in firing rate predictive of the modality selected. visTRN activity was causal to performance as confirmed via subnetwork-specific bi-directional optogenetic manipulations. Through a combination of electrophysiology and intracellular chloride photometry, we demonstrated that visTRN dynamically controls visual thalamic gain through feedforward inhibition. Combined, our experiments introduce a new subcortical model of sensory selection, where prefrontal cortex biases thalamic reticular subnetworks to control thalamic sensory gain, selecting appropriate inputs for further processing. PMID:26503050

  7. A shift in sensory processing that enables the developing human brain to discriminate touch from pain.

    PubMed

    Fabrizi, Lorenzo; Slater, Rebeccah; Worley, Alan; Meek, Judith; Boyd, Stewart; Olhede, Sofia; Fitzgerald, Maria

    2011-09-27

    When and how infants begin to discriminate noxious from innocuous stimuli is a fundamental question in neuroscience [1]. However, little is known about the development of the necessary cortical somatosensory functional prerequisites in the intact human brain. Recent studies of developing brain networks have emphasized the importance of transient spontaneous and evoked neuronal bursting activity in the formation of functional circuits [2, 3]. These neuronal bursts are present during development and precede the onset of sensory functions [4, 5]. Their disappearance and the emergence of more adult-like activity are therefore thought to signal the maturation of functional brain circuitry [2, 4]. Here we show the changing patterns of neuronal activity that underlie the onset of nociception and touch discrimination in the preterm infant. We have conducted noninvasive electroencephalogram (EEG) recording of the brain neuronal activity in response to time-locked touches and clinically essential noxious lances of the heel in infants aged 28-45 weeks gestation. We show a transition in brain response following tactile and noxious stimulation from nonspecific, evenly dispersed neuronal bursts to modality-specific, localized, evoked potentials. The results suggest that specific neural circuits necessary for discrimination between touch and nociception emerge from 35-37 weeks gestation in the human brain. PMID:21906948

  8. Transcranial direct current stimulation as a tool in the study of sensory-perceptual processing.

    PubMed

    Costa, Thiago L; Lapenta, Olivia M; Boggio, Paulo S; Ventura, Dora F

    2015-08-01

    Transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) is a non-invasive neuromodulatory technique with increasing popularity in the fields of basic research and rehabilitation. It is an affordable and safe procedure that is beginning to be used in the clinic, and is a tool with potential to contribute to the understanding of neural mechanisms in the fields of psychology, neuroscience, and medical research. This review presents examples of investigations in the fields of perception, basic sensory processes, and sensory rehabilitation that employed tDCS. We highlight some of the most relevant efforts in this area and discuss possible limitations and gaps in contemporary tDCS research. Topics include the five senses, pain, and multimodal integration. The present work aims to present the state of the art of this field of research and to inspire future investigations of perception using tDCS. PMID:26139152

  9. Impulsivity is Associated with Early Sensory Inhibition in Neurophysiological Processing of Affective Sounds

    PubMed Central

    Soshi, Takahiro; Noda, Takamasa; Ando, Kumiko; Nakazawa, Kanako; Tsumura, Hideki; Okada, Takayuki

    2015-01-01

    Impulsivity is widely related to socially problematic behaviors and psychiatric illness. Previous studies have investigated the relationship between response inhibition and impulsivity. However, no study has intensively examined how impulsivity correlates with automatic sensory processing before the drive for response inhibition to sensory inputs. Sensory gating (SG) is an automatic inhibitory function that attenuates the neural response to redundant sensory information and protects higher cognitive functions from the burst of information processing. Although SG functions abnormally in several clinical populations, there is very little evidence supporting SG changes in conjunction with impulsivity traits in non-clinical populations. The present study recruited healthy adults (n = 23) to conduct a neurophysiological experiment using a paired-click paradigm and self-report scales assessing impulsive behavioral traits. Auditory stimuli included not only a pure tone but also white noise to explore the differences in auditory-evoked potential (AEP) responses between the two stimuli. White noise is more affective than pure tones; therefore, we predicted that the SG of AEPs (P50, N100, and P200) for white noise would correlate more with self-reported impulsivity than with those for pure tones. Our main findings showed that SG of the P50 and P200 amplitudes significantly correlated with self-reported reward responsiveness and fun-seeking, respectively, only for white noise stimuli, demonstrating that higher-scoring impulsivity subcomponents were related to greater SG. Frequency-domain analyses also revealed that greater desynchronization of the beta band for the second white noise stimulus was associated with higher motor impulsivity scores, suggesting that an impulsivity-related change of SG was associated with attentional modulation. These findings indicate that the measurement of SG of white noise may be an efficient tool to evaluate impulsivity in non

  10. The impact of hemodynamic stress on sensory signal processing in the rodent lateral geniculate nucleus

    PubMed Central

    Zitnik, Gerard A.; Clark, Brain D.; Waterhouse, Barry D.

    2013-01-01

    Hemodynamic stress via hypotensive challenge has been shown previously to cause a corticotropin-releasing factor (CRF)-mediated increase in tonic locus coeruleus (LC) activity and consequent release of norepinephrine (NE) in noradrenergic terminal fields. Although alterations in LC-NE can modulate the responsiveness of signal processing neurons along sensory pathways, little is understood regarding how continuous CRF-mediated activation of LC-NE output due to physiologically relevant stressor affects downstream target cell physiology. The goal of the present study was to investigate the effects of a physiological stressor [hemodynamic stress via sodium nitroprusside (SNP) i.v.] on stimulus evoked responses of sensory processing neurons that receive LC inputs. In rat, the dorsal lateral geniculate nucleus (dLGN) of the thalamus is the primary relay for visual information and is a major target of the LC-NE system. We used extracellular recording techniques in the anesthetized rat monitor single dLGN neuron activity during repeated presentation of light stimuli before and during hemodynamic stress. A significant decrease in magnitude occurred, as well as an increase in latency of dLGN stimulus-evoked responses were observed during hemodynamic stress. In another group of animals the CRF antagonist DpheCRF12–41 was infused onto the ipsilateral LC prior to SNP administration. This infusion blocked the hypotension-induced changes in dLGN stimulus-evoked discharge. These results show that CRF-mediated increases in LC-NE due to hemodynamic stress disrupts the transmission of information along thalamic-sensory pathways by: (1) initially reducing signal transmission during onset of the stressor and (2) decreasing the speed of stimulus evoked sensory transmission. PMID:23643838

  11. Self-Related Processing and Deactivation of Cortical Midline Regions in Disorders of Consciousness

    PubMed Central

    Crone, Julia Sophia; Höller, Yvonne; Bergmann, Jürgen; Golaszewski, Stefan; Trinka, Eugen; Kronbichler, Martin

    2013-01-01

    Self-related stimuli activate anterior parts of cortical midline regions, which normally show task-induced deactivation. Deactivation in medial posterior and frontal regions is associated with the ability to focus attention on the demands of the task, and therefore, with consciousness. Studies investigating patients with impaired consciousness, that is, patients in minimally conscious state and patients with unresponsive wakefulness syndrome (formerly vegetative state), demonstrate that these patients show responses to self-related content in the anterior cingulate cortex. However, it remains unclear if these responses are an indication for conscious processing of stimuli or are due to automatic processing. To shed further light on this issue, we investigated responses of cortical midline regions to the own and another name in 27 patients with a disorder of consciousness and compared them to task-induced deactivation. While almost all of the control subjects responding to the own name demonstrated higher activation due to the self-related content in anterior midline regions and additional deactivation, none of the responding patients did so. Differences between groups showed a similar pattern of findings. Despite the relation between behavioral responsiveness in patients and activation in response to the own name, the findings of this study do not provide evidence for a direct association of activation in anterior midline regions and conscious processing. The deficits in processing of self-referential content in anterior midline regions may rather be due to general impairments in cognitive processing and not particularly linked to impaired consciousness. PMID:23986685

  12. Attention Modulates the Auditory Cortical Processing of Spatial and Category Cues in Naturalistic Auditory Scenes

    PubMed Central

    Renvall, Hanna; Staeren, Noël; Barz, Claudia S.; Ley, Anke; Formisano, Elia

    2016-01-01

    This combined fMRI and MEG study investigated brain activations during listening and attending to natural auditory scenes. We first recorded, using in-ear microphones, vocal non-speech sounds, and environmental sounds that were mixed to construct auditory scenes containing two concurrent sound streams. During the brain measurements, subjects attended to one of the streams while spatial acoustic information of the scene was either preserved (stereophonic sounds) or removed (monophonic sounds). Compared to monophonic sounds, stereophonic sounds evoked larger blood-oxygenation-level-dependent (BOLD) fMRI responses in the bilateral posterior superior temporal areas, independent of which stimulus attribute the subject was attending to. This finding is consistent with the functional role of these regions in the (automatic) processing of auditory spatial cues. Additionally, significant differences in the cortical activation patterns depending on the target of attention were observed. Bilateral planum temporale and inferior frontal gyrus were preferentially activated when attending to stereophonic environmental sounds, whereas when subjects attended to stereophonic voice sounds, the BOLD responses were larger at the bilateral middle superior temporal gyrus and sulcus, previously reported to show voice sensitivity. In contrast, the time-resolved MEG responses were stronger for mono- than stereophonic sounds in the bilateral auditory cortices at ~360 ms after the stimulus onset when attending to the voice excerpts within the combined sounds. The observed effects suggest that during the segregation of auditory objects from the auditory background, spatial sound cues together with other relevant temporal and spectral cues are processed in an attention-dependent manner at the cortical locations generally involved in sound recognition. More synchronous neuronal activation during monophonic than stereophonic sound processing, as well as (local) neuronal inhibitory mechanisms in

  13. Cortical Processing of Respiratory Afferent Stimuli during Sleep in Children with the Obstructive Sleep Apnea Syndrome

    PubMed Central

    Huang, Jingtao; Colrain, Ian M.; Melendres, M. Cecilia; Karamessinis, Laurie R.; Pepe, Michelle E.; Samuel, John M.; Abi-Raad, Ronald F.; Trescher, William H.; Marcus, Carole L.

    2008-01-01

    Study Objectives: Children with the obstructive sleep apnea syndrome (OSAS) have blunted upper airway responses to negative pressure, but the underlying cause remains unknown. Cortical processing of respiratory afferent information can be tested by measuring respiratory-related evoked potentials (RREPs). We hypothesized that children with OSAS have blunted RREP responses compared to normal children during sleep. Design: During sleep, RREPs were obtained from EEG electrodes Fz, Cz, Pz during stage 2 sleep, slow wave sleep (SWS), and REM sleep. RREPs were produced with multiple short occlusions of the upper airway. Setting: Sleep laboratory. Participants: 9 children with OSAS and 12 normal controls. Measurements and Results: Children with OSAS had significantly decreased evoked K-complex production in stage 2 sleep and slow wave sleep and significantly reduced RREP N350 and P900 components in slow wave sleep. There were no significant differences in any of the measured RREP components in stage 2 sleep, and the only REM difference was decreased P2 amplitude. Conclusions: Results indicate that in children with OSAS, cortical processing of respiratory-related information measured with RREPs persists throughout sleep; however, RREPs during SWS are blunted compared to those seen in control children. Possible causes for this difference include a congenital deficit in neural processing reflective of a predisposition to develop OSAS, or changes in the upper airway rendering the airway less capable of transducing pressure changes following occlusion. Further research is required to evaluate RREPs after effective surgical treatment of OSAS in children, in order to distinguish between these alternatives. Citation: Huang J; Colrain IM; Melendres MC; Karamessinis LR; Pepe ME; Samuel JM; Abi-Raad RF; Trescher WH; Marcus CL. Cortical processing of respiratory afferent stimuli during sleep in children with the obstructive sleep apnea syndrome. SLEEP 2007;31(3):403-410. PMID:18363317

  14. A comparative study of sensory processing in children with and without Autism Spectrum Disorder in the home and classroom environments.

    PubMed

    Fernández-Andrés, Ma Inmaculada; Pastor-Cerezuela, Gemma; Sanz-Cervera, Pilar; Tárraga-Mínguez, Raúl

    2015-03-01

    Sensory processing and higher integrative functions impairments are highly prevalent in children with ASD. Context should be considered in analyzing the sensory profile and higher integrative functions. The main objective of this study is to compare sensory processing, social participation and praxis in a group of 79 children (65 males and 14 females) from 5 to 8 years of age (M=6.09) divided into two groups: ASD Group (n=41) and Comparison Group (n=38). The Sensory Processing Measure (SPM) was used to evaluate the sensory profile of the children: parents reported information about their children's characteristics in the home environment, and teachers reported information about the same characteristics in the classroom environment. The ASD Group obtained scores that indicate higher levels of dysfunction on all the assessed measures in both environments, with the greatest differences obtained on the social participation and praxis variables. The most affected sensory modalities in the ASD Group were hearing and touch. Only in the ASD Group were significant differences found between the information reported by parents and what was reported by teachers: specifically, the teachers reported greater dysfunction than the parents in social participation (p=.000), touch (p=.003) and praxis (p=.010). These results suggest that the context-specific qualities found in children with ASD point out the need to receive information from both parents and teachers during the sensory profile assessment process, and use context-specific assessments. PMID:25575284

  15. Volatile, anthocyanidin, quality and sensory changes in rabbiteye blueberry from whole fruit through pilot plant juice processing.

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    BACKGROUND: High antioxidant content and keen marketing have increased blueberry demand and increased local production which in turn mandates new uses for abundant harvests. Pilot scale processes were employed to investigate the anthocyanidin profiles, qualitative volatile compositions, and sensori...

  16. Respiratory cortical processing to inspiratory resistances during wakefulness in children with the obstructive sleep apnea syndrome

    PubMed Central

    McDonough, Joseph M.; Huang, Jingtao; Marcus, Carole L.; Gallagher, Paul R.; Shults, Justine; Davenport, Paul W.

    2014-01-01

    Children with the obstructive sleep apnea syndrome (OSAS) have impaired respiratory afferent cortical processing during sleep that persists after treatment of OSAS. However, it is unknown whether this impairment is present during wakefulness and, if so, whether it improves after OSAS treatment. We hypothesized that children with OSAS, during wakefulness, have abnormal cortical processing of respiratory stimuli manifested by blunted respiratory-related evoked potentials (RREP) and that this resolves after OSAS treatment. We measured RREP during wakefulness in 26 controls and 21 children with OSAS before and after treatment. Thirteen participants with OSAS repeated testing 3–6 mo after adenotonsillectomy. RREP were elicited by interruption of inspiration by total occlusion and 30 and 20 cmH2O/l per s resistances. Nf at Fz latency elicited by occlusion was longer in children with OSAS at baseline compared with controls (78.8 ± 24.8 vs. 63.9 ± 19.7 ms, P = 0.05). All other peak amplitudes and latencies were similar between the two groups. After OSAS treatment, Nf at Fz latency elicited by 30 cmH2O/l per s decreased significantly (before, 88 ± 26 vs. after, 71 ± 25 ms, P = 0.02), as did that elicited by 20 cmH2O/l per s (85 ± 27 vs. 72 ± 24 ms, P = 0.004). The amplitude of N1 at Cz elicited by occlusion increased from −3.4 ± 5.6 to −7.4 ± 3 μV (P = 0.049) after treatment. We concluded that children with OSAS have partial delay of respiratory afferent cortical processing during wakefulness that improves after treatment. PMID:25539930

  17. Behavioral Dependence of Auditory Cortical Responses

    PubMed Central

    Osmanski, Michael S.; Wang, Xiaoqin

    2015-01-01

    Neural responses in the auditory cortex have historically been measured from either anesthetized or awake but non-behaving animals. A growing body of work has begun to focus instead on recording from auditory cortex of animals actively engaged in behavior tasks. These studies have shown that auditory cortical responses are dependent upon the behavioral state of the animal. The longer ascending subcortical pathway of the auditory system and unique characteristics of auditory processing suggest that such dependencies may have a more profound influence on cortical processing in auditory system compared to other sensory systems. It is important to understand the nature of these dependencies and their functional implications. In this article, we review the literature on this topic pertaining to cortical processing of sounds. PMID:25690831

  18. The Brain's Router: A Cortical Network Model of Serial Processing in the Primate Brain

    PubMed Central

    Zylberberg, Ariel; Fernández Slezak, Diego; Roelfsema, Pieter R.; Dehaene, Stanislas; Sigman, Mariano

    2010-01-01

    The human brain efficiently solves certain operations such as object recognition and categorization through a massively parallel network of dedicated processors. However, human cognition also relies on the ability to perform an arbitrarily large set of tasks by flexibly recombining different processors into a novel chain. This flexibility comes at the cost of a severe slowing down and a seriality of operations (100–500 ms per step). A limit on parallel processing is demonstrated in experimental setups such as the psychological refractory period (PRP) and the attentional blink (AB) in which the processing of an element either significantly delays (PRP) or impedes conscious access (AB) of a second, rapidly presented element. Here we present a spiking-neuron implementation of a cognitive architecture where a large number of local parallel processors assemble together to produce goal-driven behavior. The precise mapping of incoming sensory stimuli onto motor representations relies on a “router” network capable of flexibly interconnecting processors and rapidly changing its configuration from one task to another. Simulations show that, when presented with dual-task stimuli, the network exhibits parallel processing at peripheral sensory levels, a memory buffer capable of keeping the result of sensory processing on hold, and a slow serial performance at the router stage, resulting in a performance bottleneck. The network captures the detailed dynamics of human behavior during dual-task-performance, including both mean RTs and RT distributions, and establishes concrete predictions on neuronal dynamics during dual-task experiments in humans and non-human primates. PMID:20442869

  19. The brain's router: a cortical network model of serial processing in the primate brain.

    PubMed

    Zylberberg, Ariel; Fernández Slezak, Diego; Roelfsema, Pieter R; Dehaene, Stanislas; Sigman, Mariano

    2010-04-01

    The human brain efficiently solves certain operations such as object recognition and categorization through a massively parallel network of dedicated processors. However, human cognition also relies on the ability to perform an arbitrarily large set of tasks by flexibly recombining different processors into a novel chain. This flexibility comes at the cost of a severe slowing down and a seriality of operations (100-500 ms per step). A limit on parallel processing is demonstrated in experimental setups such as the psychological refractory period (PRP) and the attentional blink (AB) in which the processing of an element either significantly delays (PRP) or impedes conscious access (AB) of a second, rapidly presented element. Here we present a spiking-neuron implementation of a cognitive architecture where a large number of local parallel processors assemble together to produce goal-driven behavior. The precise mapping of incoming sensory stimuli onto motor representations relies on a "router" network capable of flexibly interconnecting processors and rapidly changing its configuration from one task to another. Simulations show that, when presented with dual-task stimuli, the network exhibits parallel processing at peripheral sensory levels, a memory buffer capable of keeping the result of sensory processing on hold, and a slow serial performance at the router stage, resulting in a performance bottleneck. The network captures the detailed dynamics of human behavior during dual-task-performance, including both mean RTs and RT distributions, and establishes concrete predictions on neuronal dynamics during dual-task experiments in humans and non-human primates. PMID:20442869

  20. Convergence of sensory inputs upon projection neurons of somatosensory cortex.

    PubMed

    Zarzecki, P; Wiggin, D M

    1982-01-01

    Cortico-cortical neurons and pyramidal tract neurons of the cat were tested for convergent inputs from forelimb afferents. Neurons were recorded in cortical areas 1, 2, and 3a. Consideration was given to both suprathreshold and subthreshold inputs evoked by electrical stimulation of forelimb nerves. Individual cortico-cortical neurons and also pyramidal tract neurons were characterized by convergence of multiple somatosensory inputs from different regions of skin, from several muscle groups, and between group I deep afferents and low threshold cutaneous afferents. Certain patterns of afferent input varied with cytoarchitectonic area. There was, however, no difference between area 3a and areas 1-2 in the incidence of cross-modality convergence in the form of input from cutaneous and also deep nerves. Many of the inputs were subthreshold. Arguments are presented that these inputs, though subthreshold, must be considered for a role in cortical information processing. The convergent nature of the sensory inputs is discussed in relation to the proposed specificities of cortical columns. The patterns of afferent inputs reaching cortico-cortical neurons seem to be appropriate for them to have a role in the formation of sensory fields of motor cortex neurons. PT neurons of somatosensory cortex have possible roles as modifiers of ascending sensory systems, however, the convergent input which these PT neurons receive argues against a simple relationship between the modality of peripheral stimuli influencing them and the modality of the ascending tract neurons under their descending control. PMID:7140889

  1. Enriched and Deprived Sensory Experience Induces Structural Changes and Rewires Connectivity during the Postnatal Development of the Brain

    PubMed Central

    Bengoetxea, Harkaitz; Ortuzar, Naiara; Bulnes, Susana; Rico-Barrio, Irantzu; Lafuente, José Vicente; Argandoña, Enrike G.

    2012-01-01

    During postnatal development, sensory experience modulates cortical development, inducing numerous changes in all of the components of the cortex. Most of the cortical changes thus induced occur during the critical period, when the functional and structural properties of cortical neurons are particularly susceptible to alterations. Although the time course for experience-mediated sensory development is specific for each system, postnatal development acts as a whole, and if one cortical area is deprived of its normal sensory inputs during early stages, it will be reorganized by the nondeprived senses in a process of cross-modal plasticity that not only increases performance in the remaining senses when one is deprived, but also rewires the brain allowing the deprived cortex to process inputs from other senses and cortices, maintaining the modular configuration. This paper summarizes our current understanding of sensory systems development, focused specially in the visual system. It delineates sensory enhancement and sensory deprivation effects at both physiological and anatomical levels and describes the use of enriched environment as a tool to rewire loss of brain areas to enhance other active senses. Finally, strategies to apply restorative features in human-deprived senses are studied, discussing the beneficial and detrimental effects of cross-modal plasticity in prostheses and sensory substitution devices implantation. PMID:22848849

  2. Spontaneous cortical activity alternates between motifs defined by regional axonal projections

    PubMed Central

    Mohajerani, Majid H.; Chan, Allen W.; Mohsenvand, Mostafa; LeDue, Jeffrey; Liu, Rui; McVea, David A.; Boyd, Jamie D.; Wang, Yu Tian; Reimers, Mark; Murphy, Timothy H.

    2014-01-01

    In lightly anaesthetized or awake adult mice using millisecond timescale voltage sensitive dye imaging, we show that a palette of sensory-evoked and hemisphere-wide activity motifs are represented in spontaneous activity. These motifs can reflect multiple modes of sensory processing including vision, audition, and touch. Similar cortical networks were found with direct cortical activation using channelrhodopsin-2. Regional analysis of activity spread indicated modality specific sources such as primary sensory areas, and a common posterior-medial cortical sink where sensory activity was extinguished within the parietal association area, and a secondary anterior medial sink within the cingulate/secondary motor cortices for visual stimuli. Correlation analysis between functional circuits and intracortical axonal projections indicated a common framework corresponding to long-range mono-synaptic connections between cortical regions. Maps of intracortical mono-synaptic structural connections predicted hemisphere-wide patterns of spontaneous and sensory-evoked depolarization. We suggest that an intracortical monosynaptic connectome shapes the ebb and flow of spontaneous cortical activity. PMID:23974708

  3. Spontaneous cortical activity alternates between motifs defined by regional axonal projections.

    PubMed

    Mohajerani, Majid H; Chan, Allen W; Mohsenvand, Mostafa; LeDue, Jeffrey; Liu, Rui; McVea, David A; Boyd, Jamie D; Wang, Yu Tian; Reimers, Mark; Murphy, Timothy H

    2013-10-01

    Using millisecond-timescale voltage-sensitive dye imaging in lightly anesthetized or awake adult mice, we show that a palette of sensory-evoked and hemisphere-wide activity motifs are represented in spontaneous activity. These motifs can reflect multiple modes of sensory processing, including vision, audition and touch. We found similar cortical networks with direct cortical activation using channelrhodopsin-2. Regional analysis of activity spread indicated modality-specific sources, such as primary sensory areas, a common posterior-medial cortical sink where sensory activity was extinguished within the parietal association area and a secondary anterior medial sink within the cingulate and secondary motor cortices for visual stimuli. Correlation analysis between functional circuits and intracortical axonal projections indicated a common framework corresponding to long-range monosynaptic connections between cortical regions. Maps of intracortical monosynaptic structural connections predicted hemisphere-wide patterns of spontaneous and sensory-evoked depolarization. We suggest that an intracortical monosynaptic connectome shapes the ebb and flow of spontaneous cortical activity. PMID:23974708

  4. Cortical processing of phonetic and emotional information in speech: A cross-modal priming study.

    PubMed

    Diamond, Erin; Zhang, Yang

    2016-02-01

    The current study employed behavioral and electrophysiological measures to investigate the timing, localization, and neural oscillation characteristics of cortical activities associated with phonetic and emotional information processing of speech. The experimental design used a cross-modal priming paradigm in which the normal adult participants were presented a visual prime followed by an auditory target. Primes were facial expressions that systematically varied in emotional content (happy or angry) and mouth shape (corresponding to /a/ or /i/ vowels). Targets were spoken words that varied by emotional prosody (happy or angry) and vowel (/a/ or /i/). In both the phonetic and prosodic conditions, participants were asked to judge congruency status of the visual prime and the auditory target. Behavioral results showed a congruency effect for both percent correct and reaction time. Two ERP responses, the N400 and late positive response (LPR), were identified in both conditions. Source localization and inter-trial phase coherence of the N400 and LPR components further revealed different cortical contributions and neural oscillation patterns for selective processing of phonetic and emotional information in speech. The results provide corroborating evidence for the necessity of differentiating brain mechanisms underlying the representation and processing of co-existing linguistic and paralinguistic information in spoken language, which has important implications for theoretical models of speech recognition as well as clinical studies on the neural bases of language and social communication deficits. PMID:26796714

  5. Processing of configural and componential information in face-selective cortical areas.

    PubMed

    Zhao, Mintao; Cheung, Sing-Hang; Wong, Alan C-N; Rhodes, Gillian; Chan, Erich K S; Chan, Winnie W L; Hayward, William G

    2014-01-01

    We investigated how face-selective cortical areas process configural and componential face information and how race of faces may influence these processes. Participants saw blurred (preserving configural information), scrambled (preserving componential information), and whole faces during fMRI scan, and performed a post-scan face recognition task using blurred or scrambled faces. The fusiform face area (FFA) showed stronger activation to blurred than to scrambled faces, and equivalent responses to blurred and whole faces. The occipital face area (OFA) showed stronger activation to whole than to blurred faces, which elicited similar responses to scrambled faces. Therefore, the FFA may be more tuned to process configural than componential information, whereas the OFA similarly participates in perception of both. Differences in recognizing own- and other-race blurred faces were correlated with differences in FFA activation to those faces, suggesting that configural processing within the FFA may underlie the other-race effect in face recognition. PMID:24784503

  6. Theta phase coherence in affective picture processing reveals dysfunctional sensory integration in psychopathic offenders.

    PubMed

    Tillem, Scott; Ryan, Jonathan; Wu, Jia; Crowley, Michael J; Mayes, Linda C; Baskin-Sommers, Arielle

    2016-09-01

    Psychopathic offenders are described as emotionally cold, displaying deficits in affective responding. However, research demonstrates that many of the psychopathy-related deficits are moderated by attention, such that under conditions of high attentional and perceptual load psychopathic offenders display deficits in affective responses, but do not in conditions of low load. To date, most studies use measures of defensive reflex (i.e., startle) and conditioning manipulations to examine the impact of load on psychopathy-related processing, but have not examined more direct measures of attention processing. In a sample of adult male offenders, the present study examined time-frequency EEG phase coherence in response to a picture-viewing paradigm that manipulated picture familiarity to assess neural changes in processing based on perceptual demands. Results indicated psychopathy-related differences in the theta response, an index of readiness to perceive and integrate sensory information. These data provide further evidence that psychopathic offenders have disrupted integration of sensory information. PMID:27373371

  7. Influence of exposure to light on the sensorial quality of minimally processed cauliflower.

    PubMed

    Sanz Cervera, Susana; Olarte, Carmen; Echávarri, J Federico; Ayala, Fernando

    2007-01-01

    The impact of lighting on minimally processed cauliflower packaged in 4 different film types (PVC and 3 P-Plus) has been measured and quantified. The effect on the sensorial quality of storage at 4 degrees C in darkness and partial or continuous lighting was evaluated. The gas concentrations in the packages and the weight losses were also determined. Atmosphere composition inside the packages depended on both the permeability of the film used for the packaging and exposure to light. Samples stored with lighting maintained the gaseous exchange between plant tissue and the atmosphere inside the packages for longer periods than in samples kept in darkness. This prompted a greater loss of water vapor as well as the development of atmospheres with low levels of O2 and high levels of CO2 in the samples packed with less permeable films. The most important aspect in sensory evaluation was color. In instrumental color evaluation, coordinates h* and L* were the main means for estimating color evolution. The presence of light accelerated browning in the cut zones. The development of abnormal coloring in these areas marked the end of shelf life for minimally processed cauliflower. Among the sensory attributes studied, color was the most affected by exposure to light. Samples packed in P-Plus 120 film displayed the lowest level of color deterioration in the cut zones. However, under lit conditions, the low permeability of this film caused atmospheres with very low O2 contents and high CO2 contents. These atmospheres produced a loss of texture and the development of off-odors. PMID:17995892

  8. Cortical organization in shrews: evidence from five species.

    PubMed

    Catania, K C; Lyon, D C; Mock, O B; Kaas, J H

    1999-07-19

    Cortical organization was examined in five shrew species. In three species, Blarina brevicauda, Cryptotis parva, and Sorex palustris, microelectrode recordings were made in cortex to determine the organization of sensory areas. Cortical recordings were then related to flattened sections of cortex processed for cytochrome oxidase or myelin to reveal architectural borders. An additional two species (Sorex cinereus and Sorex longirostris) with visible cortical subdivisions based on histology alone were analyzed without electrophysiological mapping. A single basic plan of cortical organization was found in shrews, consisting of a few clearly defined sensory areas located caudally in cortex. Two somatosensory areas contained complete representations of the contralateral body, corresponding to primary somatosensory cortex (S1) and secondary somatosensory cortex (S2). A small primary visual cortex (V1) was located closely adjacent to S1, whereas auditory cortex (A1) was located in extreme caudolateral cortex, partially encircled by S2. Areas did not overlap and had sharp, histochemically apparent and electrophysiologically defined borders. The adjacency of these areas suggests a complete absence of intervening higher level or association areas. Based on a previous study of corticospinal connections, a presumptive primary motor cortex (M1) was identified directly rostral to S1. Apparently, in shrews, the solution to having extremely little neocortex is to have only a few small cortical subdivisions. However, the small areas remain discrete, well organized, and functional. This cortical organization in shrews is likely a derived condition, because a wide range of extant mammals have a greater number of cortical subdivisions. PMID:10397395

  9. Developmental Risk Signals as a Screening Tool for Early Identification of Sensory Processing Disorders.

    PubMed

    Bolaños, Cristina; Gomez, M Marlene; Ramos, Gregorio; Rios Del Rio, Janina

    2016-06-01

    The main purpose of this research was to determine if the indicators of risk included in the Indicators of Developmental Risk Signals (INDIPCD-R) could differentiate between children at risk of sensory processing disorders (SPDs) from those with normal development and if the SPD indicators correlated with a delay or altered development. A retrospective, descriptive, correlational design was used with a sample of 51 children, 36 referred because of clinical sensory processing indicators and 15 with non-clinical indicators. Participants were assessed with a developmental scale Revised Profile of Developmental Behaviors (PCD-R), the Sensory Profile, play and clinical observations. The INDIPCD-R showed a high correlation with developmental areas of PCD-R and a sensitivity and specificity of 100%, when compared with the Sensory Profile. T-test results for independent samples showed significant differences at p ≤ 0.01 level between the children with SPD indicators and those with no clinical signs in the PCD-R. The Mann-Whitney U-test was conducted for unpaired samples, to verify if there were significant differences between children with apparent SPD indicators and children with no apparent difficulties. The Spearman's rho was used to identify the correlations between the INDIPCD-R, with different areas of development. This study supports the use of the INDIPCD-R as a screening instrument that could be used by occupational therapists to discriminate children with and without indicators of SPD. The limitation of this study was that it did not cover all the ages of the INDIPCD-R. Additional studies are required to determine the utility of this instrument for outcome studies and whether it is valid and reliable to identify children at risk of different pathologies. The INDIPCD-R is a low-cost instrument that allows the occupational therapist to make a quick review of the different components that could be involved in SPD and therefore guide the more in

  10. Sensory processing during viewing of cinematographic material: computational modeling and functional neuroimaging.

    PubMed

    Bordier, Cecile; Puja, Francesco; Macaluso, Emiliano

    2013-02-15

    The investigation of brain activity using naturalistic, ecologically-valid stimuli is becoming an important challenge for neuroscience research. Several approaches have been proposed, primarily relying on data-driven methods (e.g. independent component analysis, ICA). However, data-driven methods often require some post-hoc interpretation of the imaging results to draw inferences about the underlying sensory, motor or cognitive functions. Here, we propose using a biologically-plausible computational model to extract (multi-)sensory stimulus statistics that can be used for standard hypothesis-driven analyses (general linear model, GLM). We ran two separate fMRI experiments, which both involved subjects watching an episode of a TV-series. In Exp 1, we manipulated the presentation by switching on-and-off color, motion and/or sound at variable intervals, whereas in Exp 2, the video was played in the original version, with all the consequent continuous changes of the different sensory features intact. Both for vision and audition, we extracted stimulus statistics corresponding to spatial and temporal discontinuities of low-level features, as well as a combined measure related to the overall stimulus saliency. Results showed that activity in occipital visual cortex and the superior temporal auditory cortex co-varied with changes of low-level features. Visual saliency was found to further boost activity in extra-striate visual cortex plus posterior parietal cortex, while auditory saliency was found to enhance activity in the superior temporal cortex. Data-driven ICA analyses of the same datasets also identified "sensory" networks comprising visual and auditory areas, but without providing specific information about the possible underlying processes, e.g., these processes could relate to modality, stimulus features and/or saliency. We conclude that the combination of computational modeling and GLM enables the tracking of the impact of bottom-up signals on brain activity

  11. Distinct vestibular effects on early and late somatosensory cortical processing in humans.

    PubMed

    Pfeiffer, Christian; van Elk, Michiel; Bernasconi, Fosco; Blanke, Olaf

    2016-01-15

    In non-human primates several brain areas contain neurons that respond to both vestibular and somatosensory stimulation. In humans, vestibular stimulation activates several somatosensory brain regions and improves tactile perception. However, less is known about the spatio-temporal dynamics of such vestibular-somatosensory interactions in the human brain. To address this issue, we recorded high-density electroencephalography during left median nerve electrical stimulation to obtain Somatosensory Evoked Potentials (SEPs). We analyzed SEPs during vestibular activation following sudden decelerations from constant-velocity (90°/s and 60°/s) earth-vertical axis yaw rotations and SEPs during a non-vestibular control period. SEP analysis revealed two distinct temporal effects of vestibular activation: An early effect (28-32ms post-stimulus) characterized by vestibular suppression of SEP response strength that depended on rotation velocity and a later effect (97-112ms post-stimulus) characterized by vestibular modulation of SEP topographical pattern that was rotation velocity-independent. Source estimation localized these vestibular effects, during both time periods, to activation differences in a distributed cortical network including the right postcentral gyrus, right insula, left precuneus, and bilateral secondary somatosensory cortex. These results suggest that vestibular-somatosensory interactions in humans depend on processing in specific time periods in somatosensory and vestibular cortical regions. PMID:26466979

  12. Sensory Symptoms and Processing of Nonverbal Auditory and Visual Stimuli in Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Stewart, Claire R.; Sanchez, Sandra S.; Grenesko, Emily L.; Brown, Christine M.; Chen, Colleen P.; Keehn, Brandon; Velasquez, Francisco; Lincoln, Alan J.; Müller, Ralph-Axel

    2016-01-01

    Atypical sensory responses are common in autism spectrum disorder (ASD). While evidence suggests impaired auditory-visual integration for verbal information, findings for nonverbal stimuli are inconsistent. We tested for sensory symptoms in children with ASD (using the Adolescent/Adult Sensory Profile) and examined unisensory and bisensory…

  13. Sensory evaluation based fuzzy AHP approach for material selection in customized garment design and development process

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hong, Y.; Curteza, A.; Zeng, X.; Bruniaux, P.; Chen, Y.

    2016-06-01

    Material selection is the most difficult section in the customized garment product design and development process. This study aims to create a hierarchical framework for material selection. The analytic hierarchy process and fuzzy sets theories have been applied to mindshare the diverse requirements from the customer and inherent interaction/interdependencies among these requirements. Sensory evaluation ensures a quick and effective selection without complex laboratory test such as KES and FAST, using the professional knowledge of the designers. A real empirical application for the physically disabled people is carried out to demonstrate the proposed method. Both the theoretical and practical background of this paper have indicated the fuzzy analytical network process can capture expert's knowledge existing in the form of incomplete, ambiguous and vague information for the mutual influence on attribute and criteria of the material selection.

  14. Foodborne Pathogens Prevention and Sensory Attributes Enhancement in Processed Cheese via Flavoring with Plant Extracts.

    PubMed

    Tayel, Ahmed A; Hussein, Heba; Sorour, Noha M; El-Tras, Wael F

    2015-12-01

    Cheese contaminations with foodborne bacterial pathogens, and their health outbreaks, are serious worldwide problems that could happen from diverse sources during cheese production or storage. Plants, and their derivatives, were always regarded as the potential natural and safe antimicrobial alternatives for food preservation and improvement. The extracts from many plants, which are commonly used as spices and flavoring agents, were evaluated as antibacterial agents against serious foodborne pathogens, for example Listeria monocytogenes, Salmonella Typhimurium, Staphylococcus aureus, and Escherichia coli O157:H7, using qualitative and quantitative assaying methods. Dairy-based media were also used for evaluating the practical application of plant extracts as antimicrobial agents. Most of the examined plant extracts exhibited remarkable antibacterial activity; the extracts of cinnamon, cloves, garden cress, and lemon grass were the most powerful, either in synthetic or in dairy-based media. Flavoring processed cheese with plant extracts resulted in the enhancement of cheese sensory attributes, for example odor, taste, color, and overall quality, especially in flavored samples with cinnamon, lemon grass, and oregano. It can be concluded that plant extracts are strongly recommended, as powerful and safe antibacterial and flavoring agents, for the preservation and sensory enhancement of processed cheese. PMID:26540146

  15. Integration of sensory and motor processing underlying social behaviour in túngara frogs

    PubMed Central

    Hoke, Kim L; Ryan, Michael J; Wilczynski, Walter

    2006-01-01

    Social decision making involves the perception and processing of social stimuli, the subsequent evaluation of that information in the context of the individual's internal and external milieus to produce a decision, and then culminates in behavioural output informed by that decision. We examined brain networks in an anuran communication system that relies on acoustic signals to guide simple, stereotyped motor output. We used egr-1 mRNA expression to measure neural activation in male túngara frogs, Physalaemus pustulosus, following exposure to conspecific and heterospecific calls that evoke competitive or aggressive behaviour. We found that acoustically driven activation in auditory brainstem nuclei is transformed into activation related to sensory–motor interactions in the diencephalon, followed by motor-related activation in the telencephalon. Furthermore, under baseline conditions, brain nuclei typically have correlated egr-1 mRNA levels within brain divisions. Hearing conspecific advertisement calls increases correlations between anatomically distant brain divisions; no such effect was observed in response to calls that elicit aggressive behaviour. Neural correlates of social decision making thus take multiple forms: (i) a progressive shift from sensory to motor encoding from lower to higher stages of neural processing and (ii) the emergence of correlated activation patterns among sensory and motor regions in response to behaviourally relevant social cues. PMID:17254988

  16. Functional changes in inter- and intra-hemispheric cortical processing underlying degraded speech perception.

    PubMed

    Bidelman, Gavin M; Howell, Megan

    2016-01-01

    Previous studies suggest that at poorer signal-to-noise ratios (SNRs), auditory cortical event-related potentials are weakened, prolonged, and show a shift in the functional lateralization of cerebral processing from left to right hemisphere. Increased right hemisphere involvement during speech-in-noise (SIN) processing may reflect the recruitment of additional brain resources to aid speech recognition or alternatively, the progressive loss of involvement from left linguistic brain areas as speech becomes more impoverished (i.e., nonspeech-like). To better elucidate the brain basis of SIN perception, we recorded neuroelectric activity in normal hearing listeners to speech sounds presented at various SNRs. Behaviorally, listeners obtained superior SIN performance for speech presented to the right compared to the left ear (i.e., right ear advantage). Source analysis of neural data assessed the relative contribution of region-specific neural generators (linguistic and auditory brain areas) to SIN processing. We found that left inferior frontal brain areas (e.g., Broca's areas) partially disengage at poorer SNRs but responses do not right lateralize with increasing noise. In contrast, auditory sources showed more resilience to noise in left compared to right primary auditory cortex but also a progressive shift in dominance from left to right hemisphere at lower SNRs. Region- and ear-specific correlations revealed that listeners' right ear SIN advantage was predicted by source activity emitted from inferior frontal gyrus (but not primary auditory cortex). Our findings demonstrate changes in the functional asymmetry of cortical speech processing during adverse acoustic conditions and suggest that "cocktail party" listening skills depend on the quality of speech representations in the left cerebral hemisphere rather than compensatory recruitment of right hemisphere mechanisms. PMID:26386346

  17. Emergent Spatial Patterns of Excitatory and Inhibitory Synaptic Strengths Drive Somatotopic Representational Discontinuities and their Plasticity in a Computational Model of Primary Sensory Cortical Area 3b

    PubMed Central

    Grajski, Kamil A.

    2016-01-01

    Mechanisms underlying the emergence and plasticity of representational discontinuities in the mammalian primary somatosensory cortical representation of the hand are investigated in a computational model. The model consists of an input lattice organized as a three-digit hand forward-connected to a lattice of cortical columns each of which contains a paired excitatory and inhibitory cell. Excitatory and inhibitory synaptic plasticity of feedforward and lateral connection weights is implemented as a simple covariance rule and competitive normalization. Receptive field properties are computed independently for excitatory and inhibitory cells and compared within and across columns. Within digit representational zones intracolumnar excitatory and inhibitory receptive field extents are concentric, single-digit, small, and unimodal. Exclusively in representational boundary-adjacent zones, intracolumnar excitatory and inhibitory receptive field properties diverge: excitatory cell receptive fields are single-digit, small, and unimodal; and the paired inhibitory cell receptive fields are bimodal, double-digit, and large. In simulated syndactyly (webbed fingers), boundary-adjacent intracolumnar receptive field properties reorganize to within-representation type; divergent properties are reacquired following syndactyly release. This study generates testable hypotheses for assessment of cortical laminar-dependent receptive field properties and plasticity within and between cortical representational zones. For computational studies, present results suggest that concurrent excitatory and inhibitory plasticity may underlie novel emergent properties. PMID:27504086

  18. Cortical Hubs Form a Module for Multisensory Integration on Top of the Hierarchy of Cortical Networks

    PubMed Central

    Zamora-López, Gorka; Zhou, Changsong; Kurths, Jürgen

    2009-01-01

    Sensory stimuli entering the nervous system follow particular paths of processing, typically separated (segregated) from the paths of other modal information. However, sensory perception, awareness and cognition emerge from the combination of information (integration). The corticocortical networks of cats and macaque monkeys display three prominent characteristics: (i) modular organisation (facilitating the segregation), (ii) abundant alternative processing paths and (iii) the presence of highly connected hubs. Here, we study in detail the organisation and potential function of the cortical hubs by graph analysis and information theoretical methods. We find that the cortical hubs form a spatially delocalised, but topologically central module with the capacity to integrate multisensory information in a collaborative manner. With this, we resolve the underlying anatomical substrate that supports the simultaneous capacity of the cortex to segregate and to integrate multisensory information. PMID:20428515

  19. Impact of the hydrodyne process on tenderness, microbial load, and sensory characteristics of pork longissimus muscle.

    PubMed

    Moeller, S; Wulf, D; Meeker, D; Ndife, M; Sundararajan, N; Solomon, M B

    1999-08-01

    Paired, boneless pork loin muscles were obtained from 76 market hogs to evaluate tenderness, meat quality characteristics, sensory attributes, and microbial characterization of pork muscle exposed to the Hydrodyne Process (H) compared with untreated control (C) loin. A subset of 16 paired loins was randomly selected for use in sensory evaluation and microbial characterization. Loins were vacuum packaged and immersed in a heat shrink tank prior to the H treatment. The Hydrodyne treatment exposed the loin to the pressure equivalent of a 150-g explosive, generating a pressure distribution of approximately 703 kg/cm2 at the surface of the samples. Meat quality assessments taken following treatment included subjective color, firmness/wetness, marbling scores (1 to 5 scale), Minolta reflectance and color readings, drip loss, and lipid content. The P-value for statistical significance for main effects and interactions was set at <.05 in all analyses. Administration of H resulted in a 17% improvement in Warner-Bratzler shear force (2.69 vs. 3.24 kg), with the shear force similar at two end-point cooking times (11 and 16 min) corresponding to approximately 75 and 83 degrees C, respectively. No differences between H and C were observed for color score, firmness score, Minolta L, Minolta Y, or drip loss on uncooked samples. The H loins had lower marbling scores (P<.05) and intramuscular lipid (P<.05) content than the paired C loin. Sensory evaluation on the randomly selected (n = 16) paired loins samples showed no improvement in Warner-Bratzler shear force. Sensory panelists were also unable to detect a difference between H and C loins for both initial and sustained tenderness scores. No differences between H and C loins were found for pork flavor, off-flavor, cohesiveness, or number of chews before swallowing, but H loins had a significantly lower juiciness score and more cooking loss than C loins. Microbial analysis results showed no differences in coliform bacteria counts

  20. Placebo improves pleasure and pain through opposite modulation of sensory processing

    PubMed Central

    Ellingsen, Dan-Mikael; Wessberg, Johan; Eikemo, Marie; Liljencrantz, Jaquette; Endestad, Tor; Olausson, Håkan; Leknes, Siri

    2013-01-01

    Placebo analgesia is often conceptualized as a reward mechanism. However, by targeting only negative experiences, such as pain, placebo research may tell only half the story. We compared placebo improvement of painful touch (analgesia) with placebo improvement of pleasant touch (hyperhedonia) using functional MRI and a crossover design. Somatosensory processing was decreased during placebo analgesia and increased during placebo hyperhedonia. Both placebo responses were associated with similar patterns of activation increase in circuitry involved in emotion appraisal, including the pregenual anterior cingulate, medial orbitofrontal cortex, amygdala, accumbens, and midbrain structures. Importantly, placebo-induced coupling between the ventromedial prefrontal cortex and periaqueductal gray correlated with somatosensory decreases to painful touch and somatosensory increases to pleasant touch. These findings suggest that placebo analgesia and hyperhedonia are mediated by activation of shared emotion appraisal neurocircuitry, which down- or up-regulates early sensory processing, depending on whether the expectation is reduced pain or increased pleasure. PMID:24127578

  1. Contextual task difficulty modulates stimulus discrimination: Electrophysiological evidence for interaction between sensory and executive processes

    PubMed Central

    Fedota, John R.; McDonald, Craig G.; Roberts, Daniel M.; Parasuraman, Raja

    2012-01-01

    The occipital-temporal N1 component of the event-related potential (ERP) has previously been shown to index a stimulus discrimination process. However, the N1 has not consistently been shown to be sensitive to the difficulty of stimulus discrimination. Here we manipulated the difficulty of stimulus discrimination by modulating the similarity between serially presented targets and non-targets. The same target stimulus was employed in both easy and difficult discrimination contexts, and these physically identical target stimuli elicited a larger N1 and smaller P3b in the difficult task context. Moreover, when targets were incorrectly categorized, N1 amplitude was diminished and a P3b was not elicited. These findings provide evidence that the N1 component reflects a sensory discrimination process that is modulated by executive control, and that this component can index discrimination errors when stimulus discrimination is difficult. PMID:22906001

  2. Efficient Sparse Coding in Early Sensory Processing: Lessons from Signal Recovery

    PubMed Central

    Lörincz, András; Palotai, Zsolt; Szirtes, Gábor

    2012-01-01

    Sensory representations are not only sparse, but often overcomplete: coding units significantly outnumber the input units. For models of neural coding this overcompleteness poses a computational challenge for shaping the signal processing channels as well as for using the large and sparse representations in an efficient way. We argue that higher level overcompleteness becomes computationally tractable by imposing sparsity on synaptic activity and we also show that such structural sparsity can be facilitated by statistics based decomposition of the stimuli into typical and atypical parts prior to sparse coding. Typical parts represent large-scale correlations, thus they can be significantly compressed. Atypical parts, on the other hand, represent local features and are the subjects of actual sparse coding. When applied on natural images, our decomposition based sparse coding model can efficiently form overcomplete codes and both center-surround and oriented filters are obtained similar to those observed in the retina and the primary visual cortex, respectively. Therefore we hypothesize that the proposed computational architecture can be seen as a coherent functional model of the first stages of sensory coding in early vision. PMID:22396629

  3. Beliefs about the Minds of Others Influence How We Process Sensory Information

    PubMed Central

    Prosser, Aaron; Müller, Hermann J.

    2014-01-01

    Attending where others gaze is one of the most fundamental mechanisms of social cognition. The present study is the first to examine the impact of the attribution of mind to others on gaze-guided attentional orienting and its ERP correlates. Using a paradigm in which attention was guided to a location by the gaze of a centrally presented face, we manipulated participants' beliefs about the gazer: gaze behavior was believed to result either from operations of a mind or from a machine. In Experiment 1, beliefs were manipulated by cue identity (human or robot), while in Experiment 2, cue identity (robot) remained identical across conditions and beliefs were manipulated solely via instruction, which was irrelevant to the task. ERP results and behavior showed that participants' attention was guided by gaze only when gaze was believed to be controlled by a human. Specifically, the P1 was more enhanced for validly, relative to invalidly, cued targets only when participants believed the gaze behavior was the result of a mind, rather than of a machine. This shows that sensory gain control can be influenced by higher-order (task-irrelevant) beliefs about the observed scene. We propose a new interdisciplinary model of social attention, which integrates ideas from cognitive and social neuroscience, as well as philosophy in order to provide a framework for understanding a crucial aspect of how humans' beliefs about the observed scene influence sensory processing. PMID:24714419

  4. Abnormal fermentations in table-olive processing: microbial origin and sensory evaluation.

    PubMed

    Lanza, Barbara

    2013-01-01

    The process of transformation of table olives from tree to table is the result of complex biochemical reactions that are determined by the interactions between the indigenous microflora of the olives, together with a variety of contaminating microrganisms from different sources [fiber-glass fermenters, polyvinyl chloride (PVC) tanks, pipelines, pumps, and water], with the compositional characteristics of the fruit. One of the most important aspects of improving the quality of table olives is the use of selected microorganisms to drive the fermentation. These can supplant the indigenous microflora and, in particular, the complementary microflora that are responsible for spoilage of canned olives. In this context, from a technological point of view, a well-characterized collection of microrganisms (lactic acid bacteria, yeast) that can be isolated from the matrix to be processed (the olive fruit) will provide the basis for the development of starter culture systems. These cultures can be fully compatible with the typical products and will guarantee high quality standards. Inoculation of the brine with such selected starter cultures will reduce the probability of spoilage, and help to achieve an improved and more predictable fermentation process. Control of the fermentation processes can thus occur through chemical, chemico-physical and microbiological approaches, and since 2008, also through organoleptic evaluation (COI/OT/MO/Doc. No 1. Method for the sensory analysis of table olives). This last has established the necessary criteria and procedures for sensory analysis of the negative, gustatory and kinaesthetic sensations of table olives, which can also be attributed to abnormal proliferation of microrganisms. It also sets out the system for commercial classification, through assessment of the median of the defect predominantly perceived. PMID:23675370

  5. Abnormal fermentations in table-olive processing: microbial origin and sensory evaluation

    PubMed Central

    Lanza, Barbara

    2013-01-01

    The process of transformation of table olives from tree to table is the result of complex biochemical reactions that are determined by the interactions between the indigenous microflora of the olives, together with a variety of contaminating microrganisms from different sources [fiber-glass fermenters, polyvinyl chloride (PVC) tanks, pipelines, pumps, and water], with the compositional characteristics of the fruit. One of the most important aspects of improving the quality of table olives is the use of selected microorganisms to drive the fermentation. These can supplant the indigenous microflora and, in particular, the complementary microflora that are responsible for spoilage of canned olives. In this context, from a technological point of view, a well-characterized collection of microrganisms (lactic acid bacteria, yeast) that can be isolated from the matrix to be processed (the olive fruit) will provide the basis for the development of starter culture systems. These cultures can be fully compatible with the typical products and will guarantee high quality standards. Inoculation of the brine with such selected starter cultures will reduce the probability of spoilage, and help to achieve an improved and more predictable fermentation process. Control of the fermentation processes can thus occur through chemical, chemico-physical and microbiological approaches, and since 2008, also through organoleptic evaluation (COI/OT/MO/Doc. No 1. Method for the sensory analysis of table olives). This last has established the necessary criteria and procedures for sensory analysis of the negative, gustatory and kinaesthetic sensations of table olives, which can also be attributed to abnormal proliferation of microrganisms. It also sets out the system for commercial classification, through assessment of the median of the defect predominantly perceived. PMID:23675370

  6. Cortical processing of global form, motion and biological motion under low light levels.

    PubMed

    Burton, Eliza; Wattam-Bell, John; Rubin, Gary S; Atkinson, Janette; Braddick, Oliver; Nardini, Marko

    2016-04-01

    Advances in potential treatments for rod and cone dystrophies have increased the need to understand the contributions of rods and cones to higher-level cortical vision. We measured form, motion and biological motion coherence thresholds and EEG steady-state visual evoked potentials (SSVEP) responses under light conditions ranging from photopic to scotopic. Low light increased thresholds for all three kinds of stimuli; however, global form thresholds were relatively more impaired than those for global motion or biological motion. SSVEP responses to coherent global form and motion were reduced in low light, and motion responses showed a shift in topography from the midline to more lateral locations. Contrast sensitivity measures confirmed that basic visual processing was also affected by low light. However, comparison with contrast sensitivity function (CSF) reductions achieved by optical blur indicated that these were insufficient to explain the pattern of results, although the temporal properties of the rod system may also play a role. Overall, mid-level processing in extra-striate areas is differentially affected by light level, in ways that cannot be explained in terms of low-level spatiotemporal sensitivity. A topographical shift in scotopic motion SSVEP responses may reflect either changes to inhibitory feedback mechanisms between V1 and extra-striate regions or a reduction of input to the visual cortex. These results provide insight into how higher-level cortical vision is normally organised in absence of cone input, and provide a basis for comparison with patients with cone dystrophies, before and after treatments aiming to restore cone function. PMID:26878697

  7. Early Stages of Sensory Processing, but Not Semantic Integration, Are Altered in Dyslexic Adults

    PubMed Central

    Silva, Patrícia B.; Ueki, Karen; Oliveira, Darlene G.; Boggio, Paulo S.; Macedo, Elizeu C.

    2016-01-01

    items being greater than that of the congruent items. Electrophysiological findings were corroborated by the N400 literature and showed that the semantic processing of individuals with dyslexia was preserved. Furthermore, the findings indicate P100 visual sensory processing deficits in the dyslexic group and may suggest difficulty in the sensory stimuli process. PMID:27148102

  8. Early Stages of Sensory Processing, but Not Semantic Integration, Are Altered in Dyslexic Adults.

    PubMed

    Silva, Patrícia B; Ueki, Karen; Oliveira, Darlene G; Boggio, Paulo S; Macedo, Elizeu C

    2016-01-01

    items being greater than that of the congruent items. Electrophysiological findings were corroborated by the N400 literature and showed that the semantic processing of individuals with dyslexia was preserved. Furthermore, the findings indicate P100 visual sensory processing deficits in the dyslexic group and may suggest difficulty in the sensory stimuli process. PMID:27148102

  9. Caramel as a Model System for Evaluating the Roles of Mechanical Properties and Oral Processing on Sensory Perception of Texture.

    PubMed

    Wagoner, Ty B; Luck, Paige J; Foegeding, E Allen

    2016-03-01

    Food formulation can have a significant impact on texture perception during oral processing. We hypothesized that slight modifications to caramel formulations would significantly alter mechanical and masticatory parameters, which can be used to explain differences in texture perception. A multidisciplinary approach was applied by evaluating relationships among mechanical properties, sensory texture, and oral processing. Caramels were utilized as a highly adhesive and cohesive model system and the formulation was adjusted to generate distinct differences in sensory hardness and adhesiveness. Descriptive analysis was used to determine sensory texture, and mechanical properties were evaluated by oscillatory rheology, creep recovery, and pressure sensitive tack measurements. Oral processing was measured by determining activity of anterior temporalis and masseter muscles via electromyography and tracking jaw movement during chewing. The substitution of agar or gelatin for corn syrup at 0.6% w/w of the total formulation resulted in increased sensory hardness and decreased adhesiveness. Creep recovery and pressure sensitive tack testing were more effective at differentiating among treatments than oscillatory rheology. Hardness correlated inversely with creep compliance, and both stickiness and tooth adhesiveness correlated with pressure sensitive adhesive force. Harder samples, despite being less adhesive, were associated with increased muscle activity and jaw movement during mastication. Tooth packing, not linked with any mechanical property, correlated with altered jaw movement. The combination of material properties and oral processing parameters were able to explain all sensory texture differences in a highly adhesive food. PMID:26823092

  10. Pattern of cortical activation during processing of aversive stimuli in traumatized survivors of war and torture.

    PubMed

    Catani, Claudia; Adenauer, Hannah; Keil, Julian; Aichinger, Hannah; Neuner, Frank

    2009-09-01

    Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) has been associated with an altered processing of threat-related stimuli. In particular, an attentional bias towards threat cues has been consistently found in behavioral studies. However, it is unclear whether increased attention towards threat cues translates into preferential processing as neurophysiological studies have yielded inconsistent findings. The aim of the present study was to investigate the neocortical activity related to the processing of aversive stimuli in patients with PTSD. 36 survivors of war and torture with PTSD, 21 Trauma Controls and 20 Unexposed Subjects participated in a visual evoked magnetic field study using flickering pictures of varying affective valence as stimulus material. Minimum norm source localization was carried out to estimate the distribution of sources of the evoked neuromagnetic activity in the brain. Statistical permutation analyses revealed reduced steady-state visual evoked field amplitudes over occipital areas in response to aversive pictures for PTSD patients and for Trauma Controls in comparison to unexposed subjects. Furthermore, PTSD patients showed a hyperactivation of the superior parietal cortex selectively in response to aversive stimuli, which was related to dissociative symptoms as well as to torture severity. The results indicate a different pattern of cortical activation driven by aversive stimuli depending on the experience of multiple traumatic events and PTSD. Whereas, a decreased visual processing of aversive stimuli seems to be associated with trauma exposure in general, the superior parietal activity might represent a specific process linked to the diagnosis of PTSD. PMID:19360450

  11. Pulsed Out of Awareness: EEG Alpha Oscillations Represent a Pulsed-Inhibition of Ongoing Cortical Processing

    PubMed Central

    Mathewson, Kyle E.; Lleras, Alejandro; Beck, Diane M.; Fabiani, Monica; Ro, Tony; Gratton, Gabriele

    2011-01-01

    Alpha oscillations are ubiquitous in the brain, but their role in cortical processing remains a matter of debate. Recently, evidence has begun to accumulate in support of a role for alpha oscillations in attention selection and control. Here we first review evidence that 8–12 Hz oscillations in the brain have a general inhibitory role in cognitive processing, with an emphasis on their role in visual processing. Then, we summarize the evidence in support of our recent proposal that alpha represents a pulsed-inhibition of ongoing neural activity. The phase of the ongoing electroencephalography can influence evoked activity and subsequent processing, and we propose that alpha exerts its inhibitory role through alternating microstates of inhibition and excitation. Finally, we discuss evidence that this pulsed-inhibition can be entrained to rhythmic stimuli in the environment, such that preferential processing occurs for stimuli at predictable moments. The entrainment of preferential phase may provide a mechanism for temporal attention in the brain. This pulsed inhibitory account of alpha has important implications for many common cognitive phenomena, such as the attentional blink, and seems to indicate that our visual experience may at least some times be coming through in waves. PMID:21779257

  12. Prediction processes during multiple object tracking (MOT): involvement of dorsal and ventral premotor cortices

    PubMed Central

    Atmaca, Silke; Stadler, Waltraud; Keitel, Anne; Ott, Derek V M; Lepsien, Jöran; Prinz, Wolfgang

    2013-01-01

    Background The multiple object tracking (MOT) paradigm is a cognitive task that requires parallel tracking of several identical, moving objects following nongoal-directed, arbitrary motion trajectories. Aims The current study aimed to investigate the employment of prediction processes during MOT. As an indicator for the involvement of prediction processes, we targeted the human premotor cortex (PM). The PM has been repeatedly implicated to serve the internal modeling of future actions and action effects, as well as purely perceptual events, by means of predictive feedforward functions. Materials and methods Using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), BOLD activations recorded during MOT were contrasted with those recorded during the execution of a cognitive control task that used an identical stimulus display and demanded similar attentional load. A particular effort was made to identify and exclude previously found activation in the PM-adjacent frontal eye fields (FEF). Results We replicated prior results, revealing occipitotemporal, parietal, and frontal areas to be engaged in MOT. Discussion The activation in frontal areas is interpreted to originate from dorsal and ventral premotor cortices. The results are discussed in light of our assumption that MOT engages prediction processes. Conclusion We propose that our results provide first clues that MOT does not only involve visuospatial perception and attention processes, but prediction processes as well. PMID:24363971

  13. Auditory cortical processing in real-world listening: the auditory system going real.

    PubMed

    Nelken, Israel; Bizley, Jennifer; Shamma, Shihab A; Wang, Xiaoqin

    2014-11-12

    The auditory sense of humans transforms intrinsically senseless pressure waveforms into spectacularly rich perceptual phenomena: the music of Bach or the Beatles, the poetry of Li Bai or Omar Khayyam, or more prosaically the sense of the world filled with objects emitting sounds that is so important for those of us lucky enough to have hearing. Whereas the early representations of sounds in the auditory system are based on their physical structure, higher auditory centers are thought to represent sounds in terms of their perceptual attributes. In this symposium, we will illustrate the current research into this process, using four case studies. We will illustrate how the spectral and temporal properties of sounds are used to bind together, segregate, categorize, and interpret sound patterns on their way to acquire meaning, with important lessons to other sensory systems as well. PMID:25392481

  14. Auditory Cortical Processing in Real-World Listening: The Auditory System Going Real

    PubMed Central

    Bizley, Jennifer; Shamma, Shihab A.; Wang, Xiaoqin

    2014-01-01

    The auditory sense of humans transforms intrinsically senseless pressure waveforms into spectacularly rich perceptual phenomena: the music of Bach or the Beatles, the poetry of Li Bai or Omar Khayyam, or more prosaically the sense of the world filled with objects emitting sounds that is so important for those of us lucky enough to have hearing. Whereas the early representations of sounds in the auditory system are based on their physical structure, higher auditory centers are thought to represent sounds in terms of their perceptual attributes. In this symposium, we will illustrate the current research into this process, using four case studies. We will illustrate how the spectral and temporal properties of sounds are used to bind together, segregate, categorize, and interpret sound patterns on their way to acquire meaning, with important lessons to other sensory systems as well. PMID:25392481

  15. Effect of processing methods on nutritional, sensory, and physicochemical characteristics of biofortified bean flour.

    PubMed

    Nkundabombi, Marie Grace; Nakimbugwe, Dorothy; Muyonga, John H

    2016-05-01

    Common beans (Phaseolus vulgaris L.) are rich nutritious and affordable by vulnerable groups, thus a good choice for biofortification to address malnutrition. However, increasing micronutrients content of beans, without improving micronutrients bioavailability will not improve the micronutrients status of consumers. Effect of different processing methods on the physicochemical characteristics of biofortified bean flour was determined. Processing methods used in this study were malting (48 h), roasting (170°C/45 min), and extrusion cooking using a twin screw extruder with three heating sections, the first set at 60°C, the second at 130°C, and the last one at 150°C. The screw was set at a speed of 35 Hz (123g) and bean flour moisture content was 15%. Mineral extractability, in vitro protein digestibility, pasting properties, and sensory acceptability of porridge and sauce from processed flour were determined. All processing methods significantly increased (P < 0.05) mineral extractability, iron from 38.9% to 79.5% for K131 and from 40.7% to 83.4% for ROBA1, in vitro protein digestibility from 58.2% to 82% for ROBA1 and from 56.2% to 79% for K131. Pasting viscosities of both bean varieties reduced with processing. There was no significant difference (P < 0.05) between sensory acceptability of porridge or sauce from extruded biofortified bean flour and malted/roasted biofortified bean flour. Acceptability was also not affected by the bean variety used. Mineral bioavailability and in vitro protein digestibility increased more for extruded flour than for malted/roasted flours. Sauce and porridge prepared from processed biofortified bean flour had lower viscosity (extruded flour had the lowest viscosity), thus higher nutrient and energy density than those prepared from unprocessed biofortified bean flour. Estimated nutritional contribution of sauce and porridge made from processed ROBA1 flour to daily requirement of children below 5 years and women of

  16. Does a Sensory Processing Deficit Explain Counting Accuracy on Rapid Visual Sequencing Tasks in Adults with and without Dyslexia?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Conlon, Elizabeth G.; Wright, Craig M.; Norris, Karla; Chekaluk, Eugene

    2011-01-01

    The experiments conducted aimed to investigate whether reduced accuracy when counting stimuli presented in rapid temporal sequence in adults with dyslexia could be explained by a sensory processing deficit, a general slowing in processing speed or difficulties shifting attention between stimuli. To achieve these aims, the influence of the…

  17. Sensory-processing sensitivity moderates the association between childhood experiences and adult life satisfaction

    PubMed Central

    Booth, Charlotte; Standage, Helen; Fox, Elaine

    2015-01-01

    There are few studies testing the differential susceptibility hypothesis (DSH: hypothesizing that some individuals are more responsive to both positive and negative experiences) with adult personality traits. The current study examined the DSH by investigating the moderating effect of sensory-processing sensitivity (SPS) on childhood experiences and life satisfaction. A total of 185 adults completed measures of SPS, positive/negative childhood experiences and life satisfaction. SPS did moderate the association between childhood experiences and life satisfaction. Simple slopes analysis compared those reporting high and low SPS (+/− 1 SD) and revealed that the difference was observed only for those who reported negative childhood experiences; with the high SPS group reporting lower life satisfaction. There was no difference observed in those reporting positive childhood experiences, which supported a diathesis-stress model rather than the DSH. PMID:26688599

  18. Sensory, physicochemical and microbiological quality of irradiated minimally processed cauliflower [rapid communication

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bib, Nizakat; Khan, Misal; Badshah, Amal; Ashraf Chaudry, Muhammad

    2005-08-01

    Minimally processed cauliflower samples were irradiated, stored at 5 °C for 2 weeks and analyzed for sensory, physicochemical and microbiological qualities at 0th, 7th and 14th days. The data showed highest mean values of 7.93 and 7.57 for appearance and flavor, respectively, for 1.0 kGy treated samples. The D10 values of contaminating microorganisms on cauliflower were 0.20 ( Escherischia coli) and 0.24 kGy ( Salmonella paratyphae A.) and the resulting 5 D10 value was 1.2 kGy. The study revealed that a dose of ⩾1.5 kGy is enough for retention of quality and reduction of microbial load to 5 D10 values in cauliflower during 2 weeks storage at refrigerated temperature.

  19. Processing of a novel powdered herbal coffee (Pistacia Terebinthus L. Fruits Coffee) and its sensorial properties.

    PubMed

    Secilmis, S S; Yanık, D Kocak; Gogus, F

    2015-07-01

    In this study, the effects of roasting method, grinding and reduction in oil content on the characteristics of Pistacia terebinthus fruit coffee were investigated. Pistacia terebinthus fruit was roasted by microwave, pan and combined (microwave and convection) methods. The degree of roasting was determined by L*, a*, b* color values. The roasting times were 1,500, 1,900 and 1,620 s for microwave, pan and combined roasting methods, respectively. Cold press was used to reduce the oil content both prior to roasting and after the roasting. The oil content was reduced to around 21.5 % in all roasting methods to approach to that of coffee beans. Powdered Pistacia terebinthus fruit coffee brews were compared with each other and Turkish coffee in terms of aroma, flavor, acidity aftertaste, and overall acceptability. Sensorial analysis results showed that coffee brews prepared by pressing after the roasting process were better than those pressing prior to roasting. PMID:26139935

  20. Effect of high-frequency repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation on motor cortical excitability and sensory nerve conduction velocity in subacute-stage incomplete spinal cord injury patients

    PubMed Central

    Cha, Hyun Gyu; Ji, Sang-Goo; Kim, Myoung-Kwon

    2016-01-01

    [Purpose] The aim of the present study was to determine whether repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation can improve sensory recovery of the lower extremities in subacute-stage spinal cord injury patients. [Subjects and Methods] This study was conducted on 20 subjects with diagnosed paraplegia due to spinal cord injury. These 20 subjects were allocated to an experimental group of 10 subjects that underwent active repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation or to a control group of 10 subjects that underwent sham repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation. The SCI patients in the experimental group underwent active repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation and conventional rehabilitation therapy, whereas the spinal cord injury patients in the control group underwent sham repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation and conventional rehabilitation therapy. Participants in both groups received therapy five days per week for six-weeks. Latency, amplitude, and sensory nerve conduction velocity were assessed before and after the six week therapy period. [Results] A significant intergroup difference was observed for posttreatment velocity gains, but no significant intergroup difference was observed for amplitude or latency. [Conclusion] repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation may be improve sensory recovery of the lower extremities in subacute-stage spinal cord injury patients. PMID:27512251

  1. Effect of high-frequency repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation on motor cortical excitability and sensory nerve conduction velocity in subacute-stage incomplete spinal cord injury patients.

    PubMed

    Cha, Hyun Gyu; Ji, Sang-Goo; Kim, Myoung-Kwon

    2016-07-01

    [Purpose] The aim of the present study was to determine whether repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation can improve sensory recovery of the lower extremities in subacute-stage spinal cord injury patients. [Subjects and Methods] This study was conducted on 20 subjects with diagnosed paraplegia due to spinal cord injury. These 20 subjects were allocated to an experimental group of 10 subjects that underwent active repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation or to a control group of 10 subjects that underwent sham repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation. The SCI patients in the experimental group underwent active repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation and conventional rehabilitation therapy, whereas the spinal cord injury patients in the control group underwent sham repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation and conventional rehabilitation therapy. Participants in both groups received therapy five days per week for six-weeks. Latency, amplitude, and sensory nerve conduction velocity were assessed before and after the six week therapy period. [Results] A significant intergroup difference was observed for posttreatment velocity gains, but no significant intergroup difference was observed for amplitude or latency. [Conclusion] repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation may be improve sensory recovery of the lower extremities in subacute-stage spinal cord injury patients. PMID:27512251

  2. Linear integration of spine Ca2+ signals in layer 4 cortical neurons in vivo

    PubMed Central

    Jia, Hongbo; Varga, Zsuzsanna; Sakmann, Bert; Konnerth, Arthur

    2014-01-01

    Sensory information reaches the cortex through synchronously active thalamic axons, which provide a strong drive to layer 4 (L4) cortical neurons. Because of technical limitations, the dendritic signaling processes underlying the rapid and efficient activation of L4 neurons in vivo remained unknown. Here we introduce an approach that allows the direct monitoring of single dendritic spine Ca2+ signals in L4 spiny stellate cells of the vibrissal mouse cortex in vivo. Our results demonstrate that activation of N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) receptors is required for sensory-evoked action potential (AP) generation in these neurons. By analyzing NMDA receptor-mediated Ca2+ signaling, we identify whisker stimulation-evoked large responses in a subset of dendritic spines. These sensory-stimulation–activated spines, representing predominantly thalamo-cortical input sites, were denser at proximal dendritic regions. The amplitude of sensory-evoked spine Ca2+ signals was independent of the activity of neighboring spines, without evidence for cooperativity. Furthermore, we found that spine Ca2+ signals evoked by back-propagating APs sum linearly with sensory-evoked synaptic Ca2+ signals. Thus, our results identify in sensory information-receiving L4 cortical neurons a linear mode of dendritic integration that underlies the rapid and reliable transfer of peripheral signals to the cortical network. PMID:24927564

  3. Acoustic change responses to amplitude modulation: a method to quantify cortical temporal processing and hemispheric asymmetry

    PubMed Central

    Han, Ji Hye; Dimitrijevic, Andrew

    2015-01-01

    Objective: Sound modulation is a critical temporal cue for the perception of speech and environmental sounds. To examine auditory cortical responses to sound modulation, we developed an acoustic change stimulus involving amplitude modulation (AM) of ongoing noise. The AM transitions in this stimulus evoked an acoustic change complex (ACC) that was examined parametrically in terms of rate and depth of modulation and hemispheric symmetry. Methods: Auditory cortical potentials were recorded from 64 scalp electrodes during passive listening in two conditions: (1) ACC from white noise to 4, 40, 300 Hz AM, with varying AM depths of 100, 50, 25% lasting 1 s and (2) 1 s AM noise bursts at the same modulation rate. Behavioral measures included AM detection from an attend ACC condition and AM depth thresholds (i.e., a temporal modulation transfer function, TMTF). Results: The N1 response of the ACC was large to 4 and 40 Hz and small to the 300 Hz AM. In contrast, the opposite pattern was observed with bursts of AM showing larger responses with increases in AM rate. Brain source modeling showed significant hemispheric asymmetry such that 4 and 40 Hz ACC responses were dominated by right and left hemispheres respectively. Conclusion: N1 responses to the ACC resembled a low pass filter shape similar to a behavioral TMTF. In the ACC paradigm, the only stimulus parameter that changes is AM and therefore the N1 response provides an index for this AM change. In contrast, an AM burst stimulus contains both AM and level changes and is likely dominated by the rise time of the stimulus. The hemispheric differences are consistent with the asymmetric sampling in time hypothesis suggesting that the different hemispheres preferentially sample acoustic time across different time windows. Significance: The ACC provides a novel approach to studying temporal processing at the level of cortex and provides further evidence of hemispheric specialization for fast and slow stimuli. PMID:25717291

  4. Cortical Processing of Respiratory Occlusion Stimuli in Children with Central Hypoventilation Syndrome

    PubMed Central

    Huang, Jingtao; Marcus, Carole L.; Bandla, Preetam; Schwartz, Michael S.; Pepe, Michelle E.; Samuel, John M.; Panitch, Howard B.; Bradford, Ruth M.; Mosse, Yael P.; Maris, John M.; Colrain, Ian M.

    2008-01-01

    Rationale: The ability of patients with central hypoventilation syndrome (CHS) to produce and process mechanoreceptor signals is unknown. Objectives: Children with CHS hypoventilate during sleep, although they generally breathe adequately during wakefulness. Previous studies suggest that they have compromised central integration of afferent stimuli, rather than abnormal sensors or receptors. Cortical integration of afferent mechanical stimuli caused by respiratory loading or upper airway occlusion can be tested by measuring respiratory-related evoked potentials (RREPs). We hypothesized that patients with CHS would have blunted RREP during both wakefulness and sleep. Methods: RREPs were produced with multiple upper airway occlusions and were obtained during wakefulness, stage 2, slow-wave, and REM sleep. Ten patients with CHS and 20 control subjects participated in the study, which took place at the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia. Each patient was age- and sex-matched to two control subjects. Wakefulness data were collected from 9 patients and 18 control subjects. Measurements and Main Results: During wakefulness, patients demonstrated reduced Nf and P300 responses compared with control subjects. During non-REM sleep, patients demonstrated a reduced N350 response. In REM sleep, patients had a later P2 response. Conclusions: CHS patients are able to produce cortical responses to mechanical load stimulation during both wakefulness and sleep; however, central integration of the afferent signal is disrupted during wakefulness, and responses during non-REM are damped relative to control subjects. The finding of differences between patients and control subjects during REM may be due to increased intrinsic excitatory inputs to the respiratory system in this state. PMID:18658113

  5. Patterns of Coordinated Anatomical Change in Human Cortical Development: A Longitudinal Neuroimaging Study of Maturational Coupling

    PubMed Central

    Raznahan, Armin; Lerch, Jason P.; Lee, Nancy; Greenstein, Dede; Wallace, Gregory L.; Stockman, Michael; Clasen, Liv; Shaw, Phillip W.; Giedd, Jay N.

    2016-01-01

    SUMMARY Understanding of human structural brain development has rapidly advanced in recent years, but remains fundamentally “localizational” in nature. Here, we use 376 longitudinally acquired structural brain scans from 108 typically developing adolescents to conduct the first study of coordinated anatomical change within the developing cortex. Correlation in rates of anatomical change was regionally heterogeneous, with fronto-temporal association cortices showing the strongest and most widespread maturational coupling with other cortical areas, and lower-order sensory cortices showing the least. Canonical cortical systems with rich structural and functional interconnectivity showed significantly elevated maturational coupling. Evidence for sexually dimorphic maturational coupling was found within a frontopolar-centered prefrontal system involved in complex decision-making. By providing the first link between cortical connectivity and the coordination of cortical development, we reveal a hitherto unseen property of healthy brain maturation, which may represent a target for neurodevelopmental disease processes, and a substrate for sexually dimorphic behavior in adolescence. PMID:22153381

  6. The Signer and the Sign: Cortical Correlates of Person Identity and Language Processing from Point-Light Displays

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Campbell, Ruth; Capek, Cheryl M.; Gazarian, Karine; MacSweeney, Mairead; Woll, Bencie; David, Anthony S.; McGuire, Philip K.; Brammer, Michael J.

    2011-01-01

    In this study, the first to explore the cortical correlates of signed language (SL) processing under point-light display conditions, the observer identified either a signer or a lexical sign from a display in which different signers were seen producing a number of different individual signs. Many of the regions activated by point-light under these…

  7. Human cortical organization for processing vocalizations indicates representation of harmonic structure as a signal attribute

    PubMed Central

    Lewis, James W.; Talkington, William J.; Walker, Nathan A.; Spirou, George A.; Jajosky, Audrey; Frum, Chris

    2009-01-01

    The ability to detect and rapidly process harmonic sounds, which in nature are typical of animal vocalizations and speech, can be critical for communication among conspecifics and for survival. Single-unit studies have reported neurons in auditory cortex sensitive to specific combinations of frequencies (e.g. harmonics), theorized to rapidly abstract or filter for specific structures of incoming sounds, where large ensembles of such neurons may constitute spectral templates. We studied the contribution of harmonic structure to activation of putative spectral templates in human auditory cortex by using a wide variety of animal vocalizations, as well as artificially constructed iterated rippled noises (IRNs). Both the IRNs and vocalization sounds were quantitatively characterized by calculating a global harmonics-to-noise ratio (HNR). Using fMRI we identified HNR-sensitive regions when presenting either artificial IRNs and/or recordings of natural animal vocalizations. This activation included regions situated between functionally defined primary auditory cortices and regions preferential for processing human non-verbal vocalizations or speech sounds. These results demonstrate that the HNR of sound reflects an important second-order acoustic signal attribute that parametrically activates distinct pathways of human auditory cortex. Thus, these results provide novel support for putative spectral templates, which may subserve a major role in the hierarchical processing of vocalizations as a distinct category of behaviorally relevant sound. PMID:19228981

  8. Sensory quality and compositional characteristics of blackcurrant juices produced by different processes.

    PubMed

    Laaksonen, Oskar; Mäkilä, Leenamaija; Tahvonen, Risto; Kallio, Heikki; Yang, Baoru

    2013-06-15

    Effects of enzymatic and non-enzymatic juice pressing on key orosensory and chemical quality factors of blackcurrant juices were studied in laboratory scale using berries of five different cultivars (Mortti, Mikael, Marski, Ola and Breed15). Enzymatic processing increased the juice yield by 10-22% and the content of various phenolic compounds in juice by 4-10-fold as compared to the non-enzymatic process. Higher intensity of the mouth-drying astringency of the enzyme-aided juice was the most significant orosensory difference between the processes. Juices of different blackcurrant cultivars varied in sweetness, sourness and bitterness. The most intensive sensory attributes of the juices were sourness and puckering astringency regardless of processing method. They correlated positively with each other and were contributed by acid content and pH. In enzyme-aided juices, the contents of flavonol glycosides and hydroxycinnamic acids were associated with mouth-drying astringency, and sugar/acid ratio correlated with sweetness. These correlations were less clear in non-enzyme juices possibly due to lower content of phenolic compounds and the high content of pectin. PMID:23497904

  9. Tracking cortical entrainment in neural activity: auditory processes in human temporal cortex

    PubMed Central

    Thwaites, Andrew; Nimmo-Smith, Ian; Fonteneau, Elisabeth; Patterson, Roy D.; Buttery, Paula; Marslen-Wilson, William D.

    2015-01-01

    A primary objective for cognitive neuroscience is to identify how features of the sensory environment are encoded in neural activity. Current auditory models of loudness perception can be used to make detailed predictions about the neural activity of the cortex as an individual listens to speech. We used two such models (loudness-sones and loudness-phons), varying in their psychophysiological realism, to predict the instantaneous loudness contours produced by 480 isolated words. These two sets of 480 contours were used to search for electrophysiological evidence of loudness processing in whole-brain recordings of electro- and magneto-encephalographic (EMEG) activity, recorded while subjects listened to the words. The technique identified a bilateral sequence of loudness processes, predicted by the more realistic loudness-sones model, that begin in auditory cortex at ~80 ms and subsequently reappear, tracking progressively down the superior temporal sulcus (STS) at lags from 230 to 330 ms. The technique was then extended to search for regions sensitive to the fundamental frequency (F0) of the voiced parts of the speech. It identified a bilateral F0 process in auditory cortex at a lag of ~90 ms, which was not followed by activity in STS. The results suggest that loudness information is being used to guide the analysis of the speech stream as it proceeds beyond auditory cortex down STS toward the temporal pole. PMID:25713530

  10. Sensory Processing Difficulties in Opsoclonus-Myoclonus Syndrome: A Pilot Project of Presentation and Possible Prevalence.

    PubMed

    Green, Dido; Lim, Ming; Lang, Bethan; Pohl, Keith; Turk, Jeremy

    2016-07-01

    Opsoclonus-myoclonus syndrome is a rare but serious neurological condition resulting in loss of control of eye movements, often accompanied by difficulties in posture and movement control with reports of sensory sensitivities potentially impacting on behavior. This pilot study characterizes the presence of atypical sensory behaviors in opsoclonus-myoclonus syndrome through questionnaire survey of a cohort of families. The Short Sensory Profile, Vineland Adaptive Behavior Scale, and Developmental Behaviour Checklist were distributed to 30 families; 16 were returned anonymously. Atypical sensory behaviors were identified in a large proportion (62.5%). Children reported as being more anxious showed greater sensitivity to auditory stimuli, U(14) 11, P = .026. This is consistent with recent recognition of more extensive disease neurocognitive effects in Opsoclonus-myoclonus syndrome. Further research is needed to increase understanding of the complex pathology of this disease and to provide indicators for sensory and behavioral as well as pharmacological interventions. PMID:26994071

  11. Cortical Midline Structures and Autobiographical-Self Processes: An Activation-Likelihood Estimation Meta-Analysis

    PubMed Central

    Araujo, Helder F.; Kaplan, Jonas; Damasio, Antonio

    2013-01-01

    The autobiographical-self refers to a mental state derived from the retrieval and assembly of memories regarding one’s biography. The process of retrieval and assembly, which can focus on biographical facts or personality traits or some combination thereof, is likely to vary according to the domain chosen for an experiment. To date, the investigation of the neural basis of this process has largely focused on the domain of personality traits using paradigms that contrasted the evaluation of one’s traits (self-traits) with those of another person’s (other-traits). This has led to the suggestion that cortical midline structures (CMSs) are specifically related to self states. Here, with the goal of testing this suggestion, we conducted activation-likelihood estimation (ALE) meta-analyses based on data from 28 neuroimaging studies. The ALE results show that both self-traits and other-traits engage CMSs; however, the engagement of medial prefrontal cortex is greater for self-traits than for other-traits, while the posteromedial cortex is more engaged for other-traits than for self-traits. These findings suggest that the involvement CMSs is not specific to the evaluation of one’s own traits, but also occurs during the evaluation of another person’s traits. PMID:24027520

  12. Temperament trait of sensory processing sensitivity moderates cultural differences in neural response

    PubMed Central

    Ketay, Sarah; Hedden, Trey; Aron, Elaine N.; Rose Markus, Hazel; Gabrieli, John D. E.

    2010-01-01

    This study focused on a possible temperament-by-culture interaction. Specifically, it explored whether a basic temperament/personality trait (sensory processing sensitivity; SPS), perhaps having a genetic component, might moderate a previously established cultural difference in neural responses when making context-dependent vs context-independent judgments of simple visual stimuli. SPS has been hypothesized to underlie what has been called inhibitedness or reactivity in infants, introversion in adults, and reactivity or responsivness in diverse animal species. Some biologists view the trait as one of two innate strategies—observing carefully before acting vs being first to act. Thus the central characteristic of SPS is hypothesized to be a deep processing of information. Here, 10 European-Americans and 10 East Asians underwent functional magnetic resonance imaging while performing simple visuospatial tasks emphasizing judgments that were either context independent (typically easier for Americans) or context dependent (typically easier for Asians). As reported elsewhere, each group exhibited greater activation for the culturally non-preferred task in frontal and parietal regions associated with greater effort in attention and working memory. However, further analyses, reported here for the first time, provided preliminary support for moderation by SPS. Consistent with the careful-processing theory, high-SPS individuals showed little cultural difference; low-SPS, strong culture differences. PMID:20388694

  13. Involuntary attentional orienting in the absence of awareness speeds up early sensory processing.

    PubMed

    Schettino, Antonio; Rossi, Valentina; Pourtois, Gilles; Müller, Matthias M

    2016-01-01

    A long-standing controversy in the field of human neuroscience has revolved around the question whether attended stimuli are processed more rapidly compared to unattended stimuli. We conducted two event-related potential (ERP) experiments employing a temporal order judgment procedure in order to assess whether involuntary attention accelerates sensory processing, as indicated by latency modulations of early visual ERP components. A non-reportable exogenous cue could precede the first target with equal probability at the same (compatible) or opposite (incompatible) location. The use of non-reportable cues promoted automatic, bottom-up attentional capture, and ensured the elimination of any confounds related to the use of stimulus features that are common to both cue and target. Behavioral results confirmed involuntary exogenous orienting towards the unaware cue. ERP results showed that the N1pc, an electrophysiological measure of attentional orienting, was smaller and peaked earlier in compatible as opposed to incompatible trials, indicating cue-dependent changes in magnitude and speed of first target processing in extrastriate visual areas. Complementary Bayesian analysis confirmed the presence of this effect regardless of whether participants were actively looking for the cue (Experiment 1) or were not informed of it (Experiment 2), indicating purely automatic, stimulus-driven orienting mechanisms. PMID:26673944

  14. Effect of combination processing on the microbial, chemical and sensory quality of ready-to-eat (RTE) vegetable pulav

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kumar, R.; George, Johnsy; Rajamanickam, R.; Nataraju, S.; Sabhapathy, S. N.; Bawa, A. S.

    2011-12-01

    Effect of irradiation in combination with retort processing on the shelf life and safety aspects of an ethnic Indian food product like vegetable pulav was investigated. Gamma irradiation of RTE vegetable pulav was carried out at different dosage rates with 60Co followed by retort processing. The combination processed samples were analysed for microbiological, chemical and sensory characteristics. Microbiological analysis indicated that irradiation in combination with retort processing has significantly reduced the microbial loads whereas the chemical and sensory analysis proved that this combination processing is effective in retaining the properties even after storage for one year at ambient conditions. The results also indicated that a minimum irradiation dosage at 4.0 kGy along with retort processing at an F0 value of 2.0 is needed to achieve the desired shelf life with improved organoleptic qualities.

  15. Spontaneous Fluctuations in Sensory Processing Predict Within-Subject Reaction Time Variability

    PubMed Central

    Ribeiro, Maria J.; Paiva, Joana S.; Castelo-Branco, Miguel

    2016-01-01

    When engaged in a repetitive task our performance fluctuates from trial-to-trial. In particular, inter-trial reaction time variability has been the subject of considerable research. It has been claimed to be a strong biomarker of attention deficits, increases with frontal dysfunction, and predicts age-related cognitive decline. Thus, rather than being just a consequence of noise in the system, it appears to be under the control of a mechanism that breaks down under certain pathological conditions. Although the underlying mechanism is still an open question, consensual hypotheses are emerging regarding the neural correlates of reaction time inter-trial intra-individual variability. Sensory processing, in particular, has been shown to covary with reaction time, yet the spatio-temporal profile of the moment-to-moment variability in sensory processing is still poorly characterized. The goal of this study was to characterize the intra-individual variability in the time course of single-trial visual evoked potentials and its relationship with inter-trial reaction time variability. For this, we chose to take advantage of the high temporal resolution of the electroencephalogram (EEG) acquired while participants were engaged in a 2-choice reaction time task. We studied the link between single trial event-related potentials (ERPs) and reaction time using two different analyses: (1) time point by time point correlation analyses thereby identifying time windows of interest; and (2) correlation analyses between single trial measures of peak latency and amplitude and reaction time. To improve extraction of single trial ERP measures related with activation of the visual cortex, we used an independent component analysis (ICA) procedure. Our ERP analysis revealed a relationship between the N1 visual evoked potential and reaction time. The earliest time point presenting a significant correlation of its respective amplitude with reaction time occurred 175 ms after stimulus onset

  16. Spontaneous Fluctuations in Sensory Processing Predict Within-Subject Reaction Time Variability.

    PubMed

    Ribeiro, Maria J; Paiva, Joana S; Castelo-Branco, Miguel

    2016-01-01

    When engaged in a repetitive task our performance fluctuates from trial-to-trial. In particular, inter-trial reaction time variability has been the subject of considerable research. It has been claimed to be a strong biomarker of attention deficits, increases with frontal dysfunction, and predicts age-related cognitive decline. Thus, rather than being just a consequence of noise in the system, it appears to be under the control of a mechanism that breaks down under certain pathological conditions. Although the underlying mechanism is still an open question, consensual hypotheses are emerging regarding the neural correlates of reaction time inter-trial intra-individual variability. Sensory processing, in particular, has been shown to covary with reaction time, yet the spatio-temporal profile of the moment-to-moment variability in sensory processing is still poorly characterized. The goal of this study was to characterize the intra-individual variability in the time course of single-trial visual evoked potentials and its relationship with inter-trial reaction time variability. For this, we chose to take advantage of the high temporal resolution of the electroencephalogram (EEG) acquired while participants were engaged in a 2-choice reaction time task. We studied the link between single trial event-related potentials (ERPs) and reaction time using two different analyses: (1) time point by time point correlation analyses thereby identifying time windows of interest; and (2) correlation analyses between single trial measures of peak latency and amplitude and reaction time. To improve extraction of single trial ERP measures related with activation of the visual cortex, we used an independent component analysis (ICA) procedure. Our ERP analysis revealed a relationship between the N1 visual evoked potential and reaction time. The earliest time point presenting a significant correlation of its respective amplitude with reaction time occurred 175 ms after stimulus onset

  17. Cross-frequency coupling in deep brain structures upon processing the painful sensory inputs.

    PubMed

    Liu, C C; Chien, J H; Kim, J H; Chuang, Y F; Cheng, D T; Anderson, W S; Lenz, F A

    2015-09-10

    Cross-frequency coupling has been shown to be functionally significant in cortical information processing, potentially serving as a mechanism for integrating functionally relevant regions in the brain. In this study, we evaluate the hypothesis that pain-related gamma oscillatory responses are coupled with low-frequency oscillations in the frontal lobe, amygdala and hippocampus, areas known to have roles in pain processing. We delivered painful laser pulses to random locations on the dorsal hand of five patients with uncontrolled epilepsy requiring depth electrode implantation for seizure monitoring. Two blocks of 40 laser stimulations were delivered to each subject and the pain-intensity was controlled at five in a 0-10 scale by adjusting the energy level of the laser pulses. Local-field-potentials (LFPs) were recorded through bilaterally implanted depth electrode contacts to study the oscillatory responses upon processing the painful laser stimulations. Our results show that painful laser stimulations enhanced low-gamma (LH, 40-70 Hz) and high-gamma (HG, 70-110 Hz) oscillatory responses in the amygdala and hippocampal regions on the right hemisphere and these gamma responses were significantly coupled with the phases of theta (4-7 Hz) and alpha (8-1 2 Hz) rhythms during pain processing. Given the roles of these deep brain structures in emotion, these findings suggest that the oscillatory responses in these regions may play a role in integrating the affective component of pain, which may contribute to our understanding of the mechanisms underlying the affective information processing in humans. PMID:26168707

  18. Sensory Processing Disorder in a Primate Model: Evidence from a Longitudinal Study of Prenatal Alcohol and Prenatal Stress Effects

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Schneider, Mary L.; Moore, Colleen F.; Gajewski, Lisa L.; Larson, Julie A.; Roberts, Andrew D.; Converse, Alexander K.; DeJesus, Onofre T.

    2008-01-01

    Disrupted sensory processing, characterized by over- or underresponsiveness to environmental stimuli, has been reported in children with a variety of developmental disabilities. This study examined the effects of prenatal stress and moderate-level prenatal alcohol exposure on tactile sensitivity and its relationship to striatal dopamine system…

  19. The Interplay between Sensory Processing Abnormalities, Intolerance of Uncertainty, Anxiety and Restricted and Repetitive Behaviours in Autism Spectrum Disorder

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wigham, Sarah; Rodgers, Jacqui; South, Mikle; McConachie, Helen; Freeston, Mark

    2015-01-01

    Sensory processing abnormalities, anxiety and restricted and repetitive behaviours (RRBs) frequently co-occur in Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD). Though the relationship between these phenomena is not well understood, emerging evidence indicates intolerance of uncertainty (IU) may play an important role. This study aimed to determine pathways…

  20. Examining Sensory Quadrants in Autism

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kern, Janet K.; Garver, Carolyn R.; Carmody, Thomas; Andrews, Alonzo A.; Trivedi, Madhukar H.; Mehta, Jyutika A.

    2007-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to examine sensory quadrants in autism based on Dunn's Theory of Sensory Processing. The data for this study was collected as part of a cross-sectional study that examined sensory processing (using the Sensory Profile) in 103 persons with autism, 3-43 years of age, compared to 103 age- and gender-matched community…

  1. Hand and mouth: Cortical correlates of lexical processing in British Sign Language and speechreading English

    PubMed Central

    Capek, Cheryl M.; Waters, Dafydd; Woll, Bencie; MacSweeney, Mairéad; Brammer, Michael J.; McGuire, Philip K.; David, Anthony S.; Campbell, Ruth

    2012-01-01

    Spoken languages use one set of articulators – the vocal tract, whereas signed languages use multiple articulators, including both manual and facial actions. How sensitive are the cortical circuits for language processing to the particular articulators that are observed? This question can only be addressed with participants who use both speech and a signed language. In this study, we used fMRI to compare the processing of speechreading and sign processing in deaf native signers of British Sign Language (BSL) who were also proficient speechreaders. The following questions were addressed: To what extent do these different language types rely on a common brain network? To what extent do the patterns of activation differ? How are these networks affected by the articulators that languages use? Common perisylvian regions were activated both for speechreading English words and for BSL signs. Distinctive activation was also observed reflecting the language form. Speechreading elicited greater activation in the left mid-superior temporal cortex than BSL, whereas BSL processing generated greater activation at the parieto-occipito-temporal junction in both hemispheres. We probed this distinction further within BSL, where manual signs can be accompanied by different sorts of mouth action. BSL signs with speech-like mouth actions showed greater superior temporal activation, while signs made with non-speech-like mouth actions showed more activation in posterior and inferior temporal regions. Distinct regions within the temporal cortex are not only differentially sensitive to perception of the distinctive articulators for speech and for sign, but also show sensitivity to the different articulators within the (signed) language. PMID:18284353

  2. Sensory and Quality Evaluation of Traditional Compared with Power Ultrasound Processed Corn (Zea Mays) Tortilla Chips.

    PubMed

    Janve, Bhaskar; Yang, Wade; Sims, Charles

    2015-06-01

    Power ultrasound reduces the traditional corn steeping time from 18 to 1.5 h during tortilla chips dough (masa) processing. This study sought to examine consumer (n = 99) acceptability and quality of tortilla chips made from the masa by traditional compared with ultrasonic methods. Overall appearance, flavor, and texture acceptability scores were evaluated using a 9-point hedonic scale. The baked chips (process intermediate) before and after frying (finished product) were analyzed using a texture analyzer and machine vision. The texture values were determined using the 3-point bend test using breaking force gradient (BFG), peak breaking force (PBF), and breaking distance (BD). The fracturing properties determined by the crisp fracture support rig using fracture force gradient (FFG), peak fracture force (PFF), and fracture distance (FD). The machine vision evaluated the total surface area, lightness (L), color difference (ΔE), Hue (°h), and Chroma (C*). The results were evaluated by analysis of variance and means were separated using Tukey's test. Machine vision values of L, °h, were higher (P < 0.05) and ΔE was lower (P < 0.05) for fried and L, °h were significantly (P < 0.05) higher for baked chips produced from ultra-sonication as compare to traditional. Baked chips texture for ultra-sonication was significantly higher (P < 0.05) on BFG, BPD, PFF, and FD. Fried tortilla chips texture were higher significantly (P < 0.05) in BFG and PFF for ultra-sonication than traditional processing. However, the instrumental differences were not detected in sensory analysis, concluding possibility of power ultrasound as potential tortilla chips processing aid. PMID:25939826

  3. Modulation of early cortical processing during divided attention to non-contiguous locations.

    PubMed

    Frey, Hans-Peter; Schmid, Anita M; Murphy, Jeremy W; Molholm, Sophie; Lalor, Edmund C; Foxe, John J

    2014-05-01

    We often face the challenge of simultaneously attending to multiple non-contiguous regions of space. There is ongoing debate as to how spatial attention is divided under these situations. Whereas, for several years, the predominant view was that humans could divide the attentional spotlight, several recent studies argue in favor of a unitary spotlight that rhythmically samples relevant locations. Here, this issue was addressed by the use of high-density electrophysiology in concert with the multifocal m-sequence technique to examine visual evoked responses to multiple simultaneous streams of stimulation. Concurrently, we assayed the topographic distribution of alpha-band oscillatory mechanisms, a measure of attentional suppression. Participants performed a difficult detection task that required simultaneous attention to two stimuli in contiguous (undivided) or non-contiguous parts of space. In the undivided condition, the classic pattern of attentional modulation was observed, with increased amplitude of the early visual evoked response and increased alpha amplitude ipsilateral to the attended hemifield. For the divided condition, early visual responses to attended stimuli were also enhanced, and the observed multifocal topographic distribution of alpha suppression was in line with the divided attention hypothesis. These results support the existence of divided attentional spotlights, providing evidence that the corresponding modulation occurs during initial sensory processing time-frames in hierarchically early visual regions, and that suppressive mechanisms of visual attention selectively target distracter locations during divided spatial attention. PMID:24606564

  4. Modulation of early cortical processing during divided attention to non-contiguous locations

    PubMed Central

    Frey, Hans-Peter; Schmid, Anita M.; Murphy, Jeremy W.; Molholm, Sophie; Lalor, Edmund C.; Foxe, John J.

    2015-01-01

    We often face the challenge of simultaneously attending to multiple non-contiguous regions of space. There is ongoing debate as to how spatial attention is divided under these situations. While for several years the predominant view was that humans could divide the attentional spotlight, several recent studies argue in favor of a unitary spotlight that rhythmically samples relevant locations. Here, this issue was addressed using high-density electrophysiology in concert with the multifocal m-sequence technique to examine visual evoked responses to multiple simultaneous streams of stimulation. Concurrently, we assayed the topographic distribution of alpha-band oscillatory mechanisms, a measure of attentional suppression. Participants performed a difficult detection task that required simultaneous attention to two stimuli in contiguous (undivided) or non-contiguous parts of space. In the undivided condition, the classical pattern of attentional modulation was observed, with increased amplitude of the early visual evoked response and increased alpha amplitude ipsilateral to the attended hemifield. For the divided condition, early visual responses to attended stimuli were also enhanced and the observed multifocal topographic distribution of alpha suppression was in line with the divided attention hypothesis. These results support the existence of divided attentional spotlights, providing evidence that the corresponding modulation occurs during initial sensory processing timeframes in hierarchically early visual regions and that suppressive mechanisms of visual attention selectively target distracter locations during divided spatial attention. PMID:24606564

  5. The Genetic Influence on the Cortical Processing of Experimental Pain and the Moderating Effect of Pain Status

    PubMed Central

    Vossen, Helen; Kenis, Gunter; Rutten, Bart; van Os, Jim; Hermens, Hermie; Lousberg, Richel

    2010-01-01

    Background Research suggests that the COMT Val158Met, BDNF Val66Met and OPRM1 A118G polymorphisms moderate the experience of pain. In order to obtain experimental confirmation and extension of findings, cortical processing of experimentally-induced pain was used. Method A sample of 78 individuals with chronic low back pain complaints and 37 healthy controls underwent EEG registration. Event-Related Potentials were measured in response to electrical nociceptive stimuli and moderation by COMT Val158Met, BDNF Val66Met and OPRM1 A118G polymorphisms was assessed. Results Genetic variation did not have a direct effect on cortical processing of experimental pain. However, genetic effects (COMT Val158Met and BDNF Val66Met) on experimental pain were moderated by the presence of chronic pain. In the presence of chronic pain, the COMT Met allele and the BDNF Met allele augmented cortical pain processing, whilst reducing pain processing in pain-free controls. No significant effects were found concerning the OPRM1 A118G polymorphism. Conclusions The current study suggests that chronic experience of pain enhances genetic sensitivity to experimentally induced mildly painful stimuli, possibly through a process of epigenetic modification. PMID:21049025

  6. Microbiological, physicochemical and sensory parameters of dry fermented sausages manufactured with high hydrostatic pressure processed raw meat.

    PubMed

    Omer, M K; Prieto, B; Rendueles, E; Alvarez-Ordoñez, A; Lunde, K; Alvseike, O; Prieto, M

    2015-10-01

    The aim of this trial was to describe physicochemical, microbiological and organoleptic characteristics of dry fermented sausages produced from high hydrostatic pressure (HHP) pre-processed trimmings. During ripening of the meat products pH, weight, water activity (aw), and several microbiological parameters were measured at zero, eight, fifteen days and after 6weeks. Sensory characteristics were estimated at day 15 and after six weeks by a test panel by using several sensory tests. Enterobacteriaceae were not detected in sausages from HHP-processed trimmings. Fermentation was little affected, but weight and aw of the HHP-processed sausages decreased faster during ripening. HHP-treated sausages were consistently less favoured than non HHP-treated sausages, but the strategy may be an alternative approach if the process is optimized. PMID:26093224

  7. Cortical processing of visceral and somatic stimulation: differentiating pain intensity from unpleasantness.

    PubMed

    Dunckley, P; Wise, R G; Aziz, Q; Painter, D; Brooks, J; Tracey, I; Chang, L

    2005-01-01

    Visceral and somatic pain perception differs in several aspects: poor localization of visceral pain and the ability of visceral pain to be referred to somatic structures. The perception of pain intensity and affect in visceral and somatic pain syndromes is often different, with visceral pain reported as more unpleasant. To determine whether these behavioral differences are due to differences in the central processing of visceral and somatic pain, non-invasive imaging tools are required to examine the neural correlates of visceral and somatic events when the behavior has been isolated and matched for either unpleasantness or pain intensity. In this study we matched the unpleasantness of somatic and visceral sensations and imaged the neural representation of this perception using functional magnetic resonance imaging in 10 healthy right-handed subjects. Each subject received noxious thermal stimuli to the left foot and midline lower back and balloon distension of the rectum while being scanned. Stimuli were matched to the same unpleasantness rating, producing mild-moderate pain intensity for somatic stimuli but an intensity below the pain threshold for the visceral stimuli. Visceral stimuli induced deactivation of the perigenual cingulate bilaterally with a relatively greater activation of the right anterior insula-i.e. regions encoding affect. Somatic pain induced left dorso-lateral pre-frontal cortex and bilateral inferior parietal cortex activation i.e. regions encoding spatial orientation and assessing perceptual valence of the stimulus. We believe that the observed patterns of activation represent the differences in cortical process of interoceptive (visceral) and exteroceptive (somatic) stimuli when matched for unpleasantness. PMID:15896917

  8. Excitatory interneurons dominate sensory processing in the spinal substantia gelatinosa of rat

    PubMed Central

    Santos, Sónia F A; Rebelo, Sandra; Derkach, Victor A; Safronov, Boris V

    2007-01-01

    Substantia gelatinosa (SG, lamina II) is a spinal cord region where most unmyelinated primary afferents terminate and the central nociceptive processing begins. It is formed by several distinct groups of interneurons whose functional properties and synaptic connections are poorly understood, in part, because recordings from synaptically coupled pairs of SG neurons are quite challenging due to a very low probability of finding connected cells. Here, we describe an efficient method for identifying synaptically coupled interneurons in rat spinal cord slices and characterizing their excitatory or inhibitory function. Using tight-seal whole-cell recordings and a cell-attached stimulation technique, we routinely tested about 1500 SG interneurons, classifying 102 of them as monosynaptically connected to neurons in lamina I–III. Surprisingly, the vast majority of SG interneurons (n = 87) were excitatory and glutamatergic, while only 15 neurons were inhibitory. According to their intrinsic firing properties, these 102 SG neurons were also classified as tonic (n = 49), adapting (n = 17) or delayed-firing neurons (n = 36). All but two tonic neurons and all adapting neurons were excitatory interneurons. Of 36 delayed-firing neurons, 23 were excitatory and 13 were inhibitory. We conclude that sensory integration in the intrinsic SG neuronal network is dominated by excitatory interneurons. Such organization of neuronal circuitries in the spinal SG can be important for nociceptive encoding. PMID:17331995

  9. Evidence for parallel processing of sensory information controlling dauer formation in Caenorhabditis elegans.

    PubMed

    Thomas, J H; Birnby, D A; Vowels, J J

    1993-08-01

    Dauer formation in Caenorhabditis elegans is induced by chemosensation of high levels of a constitutively secreted pheromone. Seven genes defined by mutations that confer a dauer-formation constitutive phenotype (Daf-c) can be congruently divided into two groups by any of three criteria. Group 1 genes (daf-11 and daf-21) are (1) strongly synergistic with group 2 genes for their Daf-c phenotype, (2) incompletely suppressed by dauer-formation defective (Daf-d) mutations in the genes daf-3 and daf-5 and (3) strongly suppressed by Daf-d mutations in nine genes that affect the structure of chemosensory endings. Group 2 genes (daf-1, daf-4, daf-7, daf-8 and daf-14) are (1) strongly synergistic with group 1 genes for their Daf-c phenotype, (2) fully suppressed by Daf-d mutations in daf-3 and daf-5 and (3) not suppressed by Daf-d mutations in the nine genes that affect chemosensory ending structure. Mutations in each group of genes also cause distinct additional behavioral defects. We propose that these two groups of Daf-c genes act in parallel pathways that process sensory information. The two pathways are partially redundant with each other and normally act in concert to control dauer formation. PMID:8375650

  10. Sensory Sensitivities and Performance on Sensory Perceptual Tasks in High-Functioning Individuals with Autism

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Minshew, Nancy J.; Hobson, Jessica A.

    2008-01-01

    Most reports of sensory symptoms in autism are second hand or observational, and there is little evidence of a neurological basis. Sixty individuals with high-functioning autism and 61 matched typical participants were administered a sensory questionnaire and neuropsychological tests of elementary and higher cortical sensory perception. Thirty-two…

  11. Cortical hypoexcitation defines neuronal responses in the immediate aftermath of traumatic brain injury.

    PubMed

    Johnstone, Victoria Philippa Anne; Yan, Edwin Bingbing; Alwis, Dasuni Sathsara; Rajan, Ramesh

    2013-01-01

    Traumatic brain injury (TBI) from a blow to the head is often associated with complex patterns of brain abnormalities that accompany deficits in cognitive and motor function. Previously we reported that a long-term consequence of TBI, induced with a closed-head injury method modelling human car and sporting accidents, is neuronal hyper-excitation in the rat sensory barrel cortex that receives tactile input from the face whiskers. Hyper-excitation occurred only in supra-granular layers and was stronger to complex than simple stimuli. We now examine changes in the immediate aftermath of TBI induced with same injury method. At 24 hours post-trauma significant sensorimotor deficits were observed and characterisation of the cortical population neuronal responses at that time revealed a depth-dependent suppression of neuronal responses, with reduced responses from supragranular layers through to input layer IV, but not in infragranular layers. In addition, increased spontaneous firing rate was recorded in cortical layers IV and V. We postulate that this early post-injury suppression of cortical processing of sensory input accounts for immediate post-trauma sensory morbidity and sets into train events that resolve into long-term cortical hyper-excitability in upper sensory cortex layers that may account for long-term sensory hyper-sensitivity in humans with TBI. PMID:23667624

  12. Visuomotor transformations: early cortical mechanisms of reaching.

    PubMed

    Caminiti, R; Ferraina, S; Mayer, A B

    1998-12-01

    Recent studies of visually guided reaching in monkeys support the hypothesis that the visuomotor transformations underlying arm movements to spatial targets involve a parallel mechanism that simultaneously engages functionally related frontal and parietal areas linked by reciprocal cortico-cortical connections. The neurons in these areas possess similar combinations of response properties. The multimodal combinatorial properties of these neurons and the gradient architecture of the parietofrontal network emerge as a potential substrate to link the different sensory and motor signals that arise during reaching behavior into common hybrid reference frames. This convergent combinatorial process is evident at early stages of visual information processing in the occipito-parietal cortex, suggesting the existence of re-entrant motor influences on cortical areas once believed to have only visual functions. PMID:9914239

  13. Mucus trail tracking in a predatory snail: olfactory processing retooled to serve a novel sensory modality

    PubMed Central

    Patel, Kinjal; Shaheen, Nagma; Witherspoon, Jessica; Robinson, Natallia; Harrington, Melissa A

    2014-01-01

    Introduction The rosy wolfsnail (Euglandina rosea), a predatory land snail, finds prey snails and potential mates by following their mucus trails. Euglandina have evolved unique, mobile lip extensions that detect mucus and aid in following trails. Currently, little is known of the neural substrates of the trail-following behavior. Methods To investigate the neural correlates of trail following we used tract-tracing experiments in which nerves were backfilled with either nickel-lysine or Lucifer yellow, extracellular recording of spiking neurons in snail procerebra using a multielectrode array, and behavioral assays of trail following and movement toward the source of a conditioned odor. Results The tract-tracing experiments demonstrate that in Euglandina, the nerves carrying mucus signals innervate the same region of the central ganglia as the olfactory nerves, while the electrophysiology studies show that mucus stimulation of the sensory epithelium on the lip extensions alters the frequency and pattern of neural activity in the procerebrum in a manner similar to odor stimulation of the olfactory epithelium on the optic tentacles of another land snail species, Cantareus aspersa (previously known as Helix aspersa). While Euglandina learn to follow trails of novel chemicals that they contact with their lip extensions in one to three trials, these snails proved remarkably resistant to associative learning in the olfactory modality. Even after seven to nine pairings of odorant molecules with food, they showed no orientation toward the conditioned odor. This is in marked contrast to Cantareus snails, which reliably oriented toward conditioned odors after two to three trials. Conclusions The apparent inability of Euglandina to learn to associate food with odors and use odor cues to drive behavior suggests that the capability for sophisticated neural processing of nonvolatile mucus cues detected by the lip extensions has evolved at the expense of processing of odorant

  14. Dissociating Cortical Activity during Processing of Native and Non-Native Audiovisual Speech from Early to Late Infancy.

    PubMed

    Fava, Eswen; Hull, Rachel; Bortfeld, Heather

    2014-01-01

    Initially, infants are capable of discriminating phonetic contrasts across the world's languages. Starting between seven and ten months of age, they gradually lose this ability through a process of perceptual narrowing. Although traditionally investigated with isolated speech sounds, such narrowing occurs in a variety of perceptual domains (e.g., faces, visual speech). Thus far, tracking the developmental trajectory of this tuning process has been focused primarily on auditory speech alone, and generally using isolated sounds. But infants learn from speech produced by people talking to them, meaning they learn from a complex audiovisual signal. Here, we use near-infrared spectroscopy to measure blood concentration changes in the bilateral temporal cortices of infants in three different age groups: 3-to-6 months, 7-to-10 months, and 11-to-14-months. Critically, all three groups of infants were tested with continuous audiovisual speech in both their native and another, unfamiliar language. We found that at each age range, infants showed different patterns of cortical activity in response to the native and non-native stimuli. Infants in the youngest group showed bilateral cortical activity that was greater overall in response to non-native relative to native speech; the oldest group showed left lateralized activity in response to native relative to non-native speech. These results highlight perceptual tuning as a dynamic process that happens across modalities and at different levels of stimulus complexity. PMID:25116572

  15. Rheotaxis of Larval Zebrafish: Behavioral Study of a Multi-Sensory Process.

    PubMed

    Olive, Raphaël; Wolf, Sébastien; Dubreuil, Alexis; Bormuth, Volker; Debrégeas, Georges; Candelier, Raphaël

    2016-01-01

    Awake animals unceasingly perceive sensory inputs with great variability of nature and intensity, and understanding how the nervous system manages this continuous flow of diverse information to get a coherent representation of the environment is arguably a central question in systems neuroscience. Rheotaxis, the ability shared by most aquatic species to orient toward a current and swim to hold position, is an innate and robust multi-sensory behavior that is known to involve the lateral line and visual systems. To facilitate the neuroethological study of rheotaxic behavior in larval zebrafish we developed an assay for freely swimming larvae that allows for high experimental throughtput, large statistic and a fine description of the behavior. We show that there exist a clear transition from exploration to counterflow swim, and by changing the sensory modalities accessible to the fishes (visual only, lateral line only or both) and comparing the swim patterns at different ages we were able to detect and characterize two different mechanisms for position holding, one mediated by the lateral line and one mediated by the visual system. We also found that when both sensory modalities are accessible the visual system overshadows the lateral line, suggesting that at the larval stage the sensory inputs are not merged to finely tune the behavior but that redundant information pathways may be used as functional fallbacks. PMID:26941620

  16. Rheotaxis of Larval Zebrafish: Behavioral Study of a Multi-Sensory Process

    PubMed Central

    Olive, Raphaël; Wolf, Sébastien; Dubreuil, Alexis; Bormuth, Volker; Debrégeas, Georges; Candelier, Raphaël

    2016-01-01

    Awake animals unceasingly perceive sensory inputs with great variability of nature and intensity, and understanding how the nervous system manages this continuous flow of diverse information to get a coherent representation of the environment is arguably a central question in systems neuroscience. Rheotaxis, the ability shared by most aquatic species to orient toward a current and swim to hold position, is an innate and robust multi-sensory behavior that is known to involve the lateral line and visual systems. To facilitate the neuroethological study of rheotaxic behavior in larval zebrafish we developed an assay for freely swimming larvae that allows for high experimental throughtput, large statistic and a fine description of the behavior. We show that there exist a clear transition from exploration to counterflow swim, and by changing the sensory modalities accessible to the fishes (visual only, lateral line only or both) and comparing the swim patterns at different ages we were able to detect and characterize two different mechanisms for position holding, one mediated by the lateral line and one mediated by the visual system. We also found that when both sensory modalities are accessible the visual system overshadows the lateral line, suggesting that at the larval stage the sensory inputs are not merged to finely tune the behavior but that redundant information pathways may be used as functional fallbacks. PMID:26941620

  17. Cortical Neuron Response Properties Are Related to Lesion Extent and Behavioral Recovery after Sensory Loss from Spinal Cord Injury in Monkeys

    PubMed Central

    Reed, Jamie L.; Gharbawie, Omar A.; Burish, Mark J.; Kaas, Jon H.

    2014-01-01

    Lesions of the dorsal columns at a mid-cervical level render the hand representation of the contralateral primary somatosensory cortex (area 3b) unresponsive. Over weeks of recovery, most of this cortex becomes responsive to touch on the hand. Determining functional properties of neurons within the hand representation is critical to understanding the neural basis of this adaptive plasticity. Here, we recorded neural activity across the hand representation of area 3b with a 100-electrode array and compared results from owl monkeys and squirrel monkeys 5–10 weeks after lesions with controls. Even after extensive lesions, performance on reach-to-grasp tasks returned to prelesion levels, and hand touches activated territories mainly within expected cortical locations. However, some digit representations were abnormal, such that receptive fields of presumably reactivated neurons were larger and more often involved discontinuous parts of the hand compared with controls. Hand stimulation evoked similar neuronal firing rates in lesion and control monkeys. By assessing the same monkeys with multiple measures, we determined that properties of neurons in area 3b were highly correlated with both the lesion severity and the impairment of hand use. We propose that the reactivation of neurons with near-normal response properties and the recovery of near-normal somatotopy likely supported the recovery of hand use. Given the near-completeness of the more extensive dorsal column lesions we studied, we suggest that alternate spinal afferents, in addition to the few spared primary axon afferents in the dorsal columns, likely have a major role in the reactivation pattern and return of function. PMID:24647955

  18. The sensory world of the platypus.

    PubMed

    Pettigrew, J D; Manger, P R; Fine, S L

    1998-07-29

    Vision, audition and somatic sensation in the platypus are reviewed. Recent work on the eye and retinal ganglion cell layer of the platypus is presented that provides an estimate of visual acuity and suggests that platypus ancestors may have used vision, as well as the bill organ, for underwater predation. The combined electroreceptor and mechanoreceptor array in the bill is considered in detail, with special reference to the elaborate cortical structure, where inputs from these two sensory arrays are integrated in a manner that is astonishingly similar to the stripe-like ocular dominance array in primate visual of cortex, that integrates input from the two eyes. A new hypothesis, along with supporting data, is presented for this combined mechanoreceptive-electroreceptive complex in platypus cortex. Bill mechanoreceptors are shown to be capable of detecting mechanical waves travelling through the water from moving prey. These mechanical waves arrive after the electrical activity from the same prey, as a function of distance. Bimodal cortical neurones, sensitive to combined mechanical and electrical stimulation, with a delay, can thus signal directly the absolute distance of the prey. Combined with the directional information provided by signal processing of the thousands of receptors on the bill surface, the stripe-like cortical array enables the platypus to use two different sensory systems in its bill to achieve a complete, three-dimensional 'fix' on its underwater prey. PMID:9720115

  19. Cortical and subcortical plasticity in the brains of humans, primates, and rats after damage to sensory afferents in the dorsal columns of the spinal cord

    PubMed Central

    Kaas, Jon H.; Qi, Hui-Xin; Burish, Mark; Gharbawie, Omar; Onifer, Stephen M.; Massey, James M.

    2008-01-01

    The failure of injured axons to regenerate following spinal cord injury deprives brain neurons of their normal sources of activation. These injuries also result in the reorganization of affected areas of the central nervous system that is thought to drive both the ensuing recovery of function and the formation of maladaptive neuronal circuitry. Better understanding of the physiological consequences of novel synaptic connections produced by injury and the mechanisms that control their formation are important to the development of new successful strategies for the treatment of patients with spinal cord injuries. Here we discuss the anatomical, physiological and behavioral changes that take place in response to injury-induced plasticity after damage to the dorsal column pathway in rats and monkeys. Complete section of the dorsal columns of the spinal cord at a high cervical level in monkeys and rats interrupts the ascending axon branches of low threshold mechanoreceptor afferents subserving the forelimb and the rest of the lower body. Such lesions render the corresponding part of the somatotopic representation of primary somatosensory cortex totally unresponsive to tactile stimuli. There are also behavioral consequences of the sensory loss, including an impaired use of the hand/forelimb in manipulating small objects. In monkeys, if some of the afferents from the hand remain intact after dorsal column lesions, these remaining afferents extensively reactivate portions of somatosensory cortex formerly representing the hand. This functional reorganization develops over a postoperative period of one month, during which hand use rapidly improves. These recoveries appear to be mediated, at least in part, by the sprouting of preserved afferents within the cuneate nucleus of the dorsal column-trigeminal complex. In rats, such functional collateral sprouting has been promoted by the post-lesion digestion of the perineuronal net in the cuneate nucleus. Thus, this and other

  20. Distinct lateral inhibitory circuits drive parallel processing of sensory information in the mammalian olfactory bulb

    PubMed Central

    Geramita, Matthew A; Burton, Shawn D; Urban, Nathan N

    2016-01-01

    Splitting sensory information into parallel pathways is a common strategy in sensory systems. Yet, how circuits in these parallel pathways are composed to maintain or even enhance the encoding of specific stimulus features is poorly understood. Here, we have investigated the parallel pathways formed by mitral and tufted cells of the olfactory system in mice and characterized the emergence of feature selectivity in these cell types via distinct lateral inhibitory circuits. We find differences in activity-dependent lateral inhibition between mitral and tufted cells that likely reflect newly described differences in the activation of deep and superficial granule cells. Simulations show that these circuit-level differences allow mitral and tufted cells to best discriminate odors in separate concentration ranges, indicating that segregating information about different ranges of stimulus intensity may be an important function of these parallel sensory pathways. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.16039.001 PMID:27351103

  1. Distinct lateral inhibitory circuits drive parallel processing of sensory information in the mammalian olfactory bulb.

    PubMed

    Geramita, Matthew A; Burton, Shawn D; Urban, Nathan N

    2016-01-01

    Splitting sensory information into parallel pathways is a common strategy in sensory systems. Yet, how circuits in these parallel pathways are composed to maintain or even enhance the encoding of specific stimulus features is poorly understood. Here, we have investigated the parallel pathways formed by mitral and tufted cells of the olfactory system in mice and characterized the emergence of feature selectivity in these cell types via distinct lateral inhibitory circuits. We find differences in activity-dependent lateral inhibition between mitral and tufted cells that likely reflect newly described differences in the activation of deep and superficial granule cells. Simulations show that these circuit-level differences allow mitral and tufted cells to best discriminate odors in separate concentration ranges, indicating that segregating information about different ranges of stimulus intensity may be an important function of these parallel sensory pathways. PMID:27351103

  2. Effect of processing and storage and sensory and nutritional quality of raw, frozen, canned green beans and broccoli

    SciTech Connect

    Lee, W.N.; Kramer, A.; Onishi, Y.

    1981-01-01

    Recent concern with energy consumption has accelerated the search for methods of preservation and shelf-life extension of foods with the two-fold aim of reducing food waste and minimizing energy consumption. Studies were undertaken to determine first whether the shelf-life of raw vegetables could be extended substantially by blanching and packaging in reduced oxygen, and secondly to determine whether these same vegetables could be canned and they would retain superior quality when heat-processing minimally in a process equivalent to the heat process required for retortable pouches. The sensory qualities and nutritional values of vegetables so processed are evaluated. 3 refs.

  3. Cellular and Network Mechanisms Underlying Information Processing in a Simple Sensory System

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Jacobs, Gwen; Henze, Chris; Biegel, Bryan (Technical Monitor)

    2002-01-01

    Realistic, biophysically-based compartmental models were constructed of several primary sensory interneurons in the cricket cercal sensory system. A dynamic atlas of the afferent input to these cells was used to set spatio-temporal parameters for the simulated stimulus-dependent synaptic inputs. We examined the roles of dendritic morphology, passive membrane properties, and active conductances on the frequency tuning of the neurons. The sensitivity of narrow-band low pass interneurons could be explained entirely by the electronic structure of the dendritic arbors and the dynamic sensitivity of the SIZ. The dynamic characteristics of interneurons with higher frequency sensitivity required models with voltage-dependent dendritic conductances.

  4. Functional abnormalities in the cortical processing of sound complexity and musical consonance in schizophrenia: evidence from an evoked potential study

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Previous studies have demonstrated functional and structural temporal lobe abnormalities located close to the auditory cortical regions in schizophrenia. The goal of this study was to determine whether functional abnormalities exist in the cortical processing of musical sound in schizophrenia. Methods Twelve schizophrenic patients and twelve age- and sex-matched healthy controls were recruited, and participants listened to a random sequence of two kinds of sonic entities, intervals (tritones and perfect fifths) and chords (atonal chords, diminished chords, and major triads), of varying degrees of complexity and consonance. The perception of musical sound was investigated by the auditory evoked potentials technique. Results Our results showed that schizophrenic patients exhibited significant reductions in the amplitudes of the N1 and P2 components elicited by musical stimuli, to which consonant sounds contributed more significantly than dissonant sounds. Schizophrenic patients could not perceive the dissimilarity between interval and chord stimuli based on the evoked potentials responses as compared with the healthy controls. Conclusion This study provided electrophysiological evidence of functional abnormalities in the cortical processing of sound complexity and music consonance in schizophrenia. The preliminary findings warrant further investigations for the underlying mechanisms. PMID:23721126

  5. Tickle me, I think I might be dreaming! Sensory attenuation, self-other distinction, and predictive processing in lucid dreams.

    PubMed

    Windt, Jennifer M; Harkness, Dominic L; Lenggenhager, Bigna

    2014-01-01

    The contrast between self- and other-produced tickles, as a special case of sensory attenuation for self-produced actions, has long been a target of empirical research. While in standard wake states it is nearly impossible to tickle oneself, there are interesting exceptions. Notably, participants awakened from REM (rapid eye movement-) sleep dreams are able to tickle themselves. So far, however, the question of whether it is possible to tickle oneself and be tickled by another in the dream state has not been investigated empirically or addressed from a theoretical perspective. Here, we report the results of an explorative web-based study in which participants were asked to rate their sensations during self-tickling and being tickled during wakefulness, imagination, and lucid dreaming. Our results, though highly preliminary, indicate that in the special case of lucid control dreams, the difference between self-tickling and being tickled by another is obliterated, with both self- and other produced tickles receiving similar ratings as self-tickling during wakefulness. This leads us to the speculative conclusion that in lucid control dreams, sensory attenuation for self-produced tickles spreads to those produced by non-self dream characters. These preliminary results provide the backdrop for a more general theoretical and metatheoretical discussion of tickling in lucid dreams in a predictive processing framework. We argue that the primary value of our study lies not so much in our results, which are subject to important limitations, but rather in the fact that they enable a new theoretical perspective on the relationship between sensory attenuation, the self-other distinction and agency, as well as suggest new questions for future research. In particular, the example of tickling during lucid dreaming raises the question of whether sensory attenuation and the self-other distinction can be simulated largely independently of external sensory input. PMID:25278861

  6. Tickle me, I think I might be dreaming! Sensory attenuation, self-other distinction, and predictive processing in lucid dreams

    PubMed Central

    Windt, Jennifer M.; Harkness, Dominic L.; Lenggenhager, Bigna

    2014-01-01

    The contrast between self- and other-produced tickles, as a special case of sensory attenuation for self-produced actions, has long been a target of empirical research. While in standard wake states it is nearly impossible to tickle oneself, there are interesting exceptions. Notably, participants awakened from REM (rapid eye movement-) sleep dreams are able to tickle themselves. So far, however, the question of whether it is possible to tickle oneself and be tickled by another in the dream state has not been investigated empirically or addressed from a theoretical perspective. Here, we report the results of an explorative web-based study in which participants were asked to rate their sensations during self-tickling and being tickled during wakefulness, imagination, and lucid dreaming. Our results, though highly preliminary, indicate that in the special case of lucid control dreams, the difference between self-tickling and being tickled by another is obliterated, with both self- and other produced tickles receiving similar ratings as self-tickling during wakefulness. This leads us to the speculative conclusion that in lucid control dreams, sensory attenuation for self-produced tickles spreads to those produced by non-self dream characters. These preliminary results provide the backdrop for a more general theoretical and metatheoretical discussion of tickling in lucid dreams in a predictive processing framework. We argue that the primary value of our study lies not so much in our results, which are subject to important limitations, but rather in the fact that they enable a new theoretical perspective on the relationship between sensory attenuation, the self-other distinction and agency, as well as suggest new questions for future research. In particular, the example of tickling during lucid dreaming raises the question of whether sensory attenuation and the self-other distinction can be simulated largely independently of external sensory input. PMID:25278861

  7. Inhibitory interneurons in visual cortical plasticity.

    PubMed

    van Versendaal, Daniëlle; Levelt, Christiaan N

    2016-10-01

    For proper maturation of the neocortex and acquisition of specific functions and skills, exposure to sensory stimuli is vital during critical periods of development when synaptic connectivity is highly malleable. To preserve reliable cortical processing, it is essential that these critical periods end after which learning becomes more conditional and active interaction with the environment becomes more important. How these age-dependent forms of plasticity are regulated has been studied extensively in the primary visual cortex. This has revealed that inhibitory innervation plays a crucial role and that a temporary decrease in inhibition is essential for plasticity to take place. Here, we discuss how different interneuron subsets regulate plasticity during different stages of cortical maturation. We propose a theory in which different interneuron subsets select the sources of neuronal input that undergo plasticity. PMID:27193323

  8. Study of drying process on starch structural properties and their effect on semolina pasta sensory quality.

    PubMed

    Padalino, Lucia; Caliandro, Rocco; Chita, Giuseppe; Conte, Amalia; Del Nobile, Matteo Alessandro

    2016-11-20

    The influence of drying temperature on the starch crystallites and its impact on durum wheat pasta sensory properties is addressed in this work. In particular, spaghetti were produced by means of a pilot plant using 5 different drying temperature profiles. The sensory properties, as well as the cooking quality of pasta were assessed. X-ray powder diffraction was used for investigating changes in the crystallinity content of the samples. Starch crystallinity, size and density of the starch crystallites were determined from the analysis of the diffraction profiles. As expected, spaghetti sensory properties improved as the drying temperatures increased. In particular, attributes as resistance to break for uncooked samples and firmness, elasticity, bulkiness and stickiness for cooked samples, all benefit from drying temperature increase. The spaghetti cooking quality was also positively affected by the drying temperature increase. Diffraction analysis suggested that the improvement of sensory properties and cooking quality of pasta were directly related to the increase in density of both physical crosslink of starch granules and chemical crosslink of protein matrix. PMID:27561491

  9. Restricted and Repetitive Behaviours, Sensory Processing and Cognitive Style in Children with Autism Spectrum Disorders

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Chen, Yu-Han; Rodgers, Jacqui; McConachie, Helen

    2009-01-01

    Many individuals with autism tend to focus on details. It has been suggested that this cognitive style may underlie the presence of stereotyped routines, repetitive interests and behaviours, and both relate in some way to sensory abnormalities. Twenty-nine children with diagnosis of high functioning autism or Asperger syndrome completed the…

  10. Brainstem processing of vestibular sensory exafference: implications for motion sickness etiology.

    PubMed

    Oman, Charles M; Cullen, Kathleen E

    2014-08-01

    The origin of the internal "sensory conflict" stimulus causing motion sickness has been debated for more than four decades. Recent studies show a subclass of neurons in the vestibular nuclei and deep cerebellar nuclei that respond preferentially to passive head movements. During active movement, the semicircular canal and otolith input ("reafference") to these neurons are canceled by a mechanism comparing the expected consequences of self-generated movement (estimated with an internal model-presumably located in the cerebellum) with the actual sensory feedback. The un-canceled component ("exafference") resulting from passive movement normally helps compensate for unexpected postural disturbances. Notably, the existence of such vestibular "sensory conflict" neurons had been postulated as early as 1982, but their existence and putative role in posture control and motion sickness have been long debated. Here, we review the development of "sensory conflict" theories in relation to recent evidence for brainstem and cerebellar reafference cancelation, and identify some open research questions. We propose that conditions producing persistent activity of these neurons, or their targets, stimulate nearby brainstem emetic centers-via an as yet unidentified mechanism. We discuss how such a mechanism is consistent with the notable difference in motion sickness susceptibility of drivers as opposed to passengers, human immunity to normal self-generated movement and why head restraint or lying horizontal confers relative immunity. Finally, we propose that fuller characterization of these mechanisms and their potential role in motion sickness could lead to more effective, scientifically based prevention and treatment for motion sickness. PMID:24838552

  11. Progress in the Understanding of Sensory and Perceptual Processes in Early Infancy.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Haith, Marshall M.

    1990-01-01

    Focuses on investigations of infant sensation and perception over the past 25 years. Describes the knowledge base concerning the sensory and perceptual world of the infant in the mid-1960s. Methodological highlights in the study of vision and audition are covered. (RJC)

  12. Characterising reward outcome signals in sensory cortex☆

    PubMed Central

    FitzGerald, Thomas H.B.; Friston, Karl J.; Dolan, Raymond J.

    2013-01-01

    Reward outcome signalling in the sensory cortex is held as important for linking stimuli to their consequences and for modulating perceptual learning in response to incentives. Evidence for reward outcome signalling has been found in sensory regions including the visual, auditory and somatosensory cortices across a range of different paradigms, but it is unknown whether the population of neurons signalling rewarding outcomes are the same as those processing predictive stimuli. We addressed this question using a multivariate analysis of high-resolution functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), in a task where subjects were engaged in instrumental learning with visual predictive cues and auditory signalled reward feedback. We found evidence that outcome signals in sensory regions localise to the same areas involved in stimulus processing. These outcome signals are non-specific and we show that the neuronal populations involved in stimulus representation are not their exclusive target, in keeping with theoretical models of value learning. Thus, our results reveal one likely mechanism through which rewarding outcomes are linked to predictive sensory stimuli, a link that may be key for both reward and perceptual learning. PMID:23811411

  13. An Efficient Simulation Environment for Modeling Large-Scale Cortical Processing

    PubMed Central

    Richert, Micah; Nageswaran, Jayram Moorkanikara; Dutt, Nikil; Krichmar, Jeffrey L.

    2011-01-01

    We have developed a spiking neural network simulator, which is both easy to use and computationally efficient, for the generation of large-scale computational neuroscience models. The simulator implements current or conductance based Izhikevich neuron networks, having spike-timing dependent plasticity and short-term plasticity. It uses a standard network construction interface. The simulator allows for execution on either GPUs or CPUs. The simulator, which is written in C/C++, allows for both fine grain and coarse grain specificity of a host of parameters. We demonstrate the ease of use and computational efficiency of this model by implementing a large-scale model of cortical areas V1, V4, and area MT. The complete model, which has 138,240 neurons and approximately 30 million synapses, runs in real-time on an off-the-shelf GPU. The simulator source code, as well as the source code for the cortical model examples is publicly available. PMID:22007166

  14. Sensory Cortex Underpinnings of Traumatic Brain Injury Deficits

    PubMed Central

    Alwis, Dasuni S.; Yan, Edwin B.; Morganti-Kossmann, Maria-Cristina; Rajan, Ramesh

    2012-01-01

    Traumatic brain injury (TBI) can result in persistent sensorimotor and cognitive deficits including long-term altered sensory processing. The few animal models of sensory cortical processing effects of TBI have been limited to examination of effects immediately after TBI and only in some layers of cortex. We have now used the rat whisker tactile system and the cortex processing whisker-derived input to provide a highly detailed description of TBI-induced long-term changes in neuronal responses across the entire columnar network in primary sensory cortex. Brain injury (n = 19) was induced using an impact acceleration method and sham controls received surgery only (n = 15). Animals were tested in a range of sensorimotor behaviour tasks prior to and up to 6 weeks post-injury when there were still significant sensorimotor behaviour deficits. At 8–10 weeks post-trauma, in terminal experiments, extracellular recordings were obtained from barrel cortex neurons in response to whisker motion, including motion that mimicked whisker motion observed in awake animals undertaking different tasks. In cortex, there were lamina-specific neuronal response alterations that appeared to reflect local circuit changes. Hyper-excitation was found only in supragranular layers involved in intra-areal processing and long-range integration, and only for stimulation with complex, naturalistic whisker motion patterns and not for stimulation with simple trapezoidal whisker motion. Thus TBI induces long-term directional changes in integrative sensory cortical layers that depend on the complexity of the incoming sensory information. The nature of these changes allow predictions as to what types of sensory processes may be affected in TBI and contribute to post-trauma sensorimotor deficits. PMID:23284921

  15. Effectiveness and Usability of the Sensory Processing Measure-Preschool Quick Tips: Data-Driven Intervention Following the Use of the SPM-Preschool in an Early Childhood, Multiple-Case Study

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Olson, Carol H.; Henry, Diana A.; Kliner, Ashley Peck; Kyllo, Alissa; Richter, Chelsea Munson; Charley, Jane; Whitcher, Meagan Chapman; Reinke, Katherine Roth; Tysver, Chelsay Horner; Wagner, Lacey; Walworth, Jessica

    2016-01-01

    This pre- and posttest multiple-case study examined the effectiveness and usability of the Sensory Processing Measure-Preschool Quick Tips (SPM-P QT) by key stakeholders (parents and teachers) for implementing data-driven intervention to address sensory processing challenges. The Sensory Processing Measure-Preschool (SPM-P) was administered as an…

  16. Physiological approaches to understanding molecular actions on dorsolateral prefrontal cortical neurons underlying higher cognitive processing.

    PubMed

    Wang, Min; Arnsten, Amy F T

    2015-11-18

    Revealing how molecular mechanisms influence higher brain circuits in primates will be essential for understanding how genetic insults lead to increased risk of cognitive disorders. Traditionally, modulatory influences on higher cortical circuits have been examined using lesion techniques, where a brain region is depleted of a particular transmitter to determine how its loss impacts cognitive function. For example, depletion of catecholamines or acetylcholine from the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex produces striking deficits in working memory abilities. More directed techniques have utilized direct infusions of drug into a specific cortical site to try to circumvent compensatory changes that are common following transmitter depletion. The effects of drug on neuronal firing patterns are often studied using iontophoresis, where a minute amount of drug is moved into the brain using a tiny electrical current, thus minimizing the fluid flow that generally disrupts neuronal recordings. All of these approaches can be compared to systemic drug administration, which remains a key arena for the development of effective therapeutics for human cognitive disorders. Most recently, viral techniques are being developed to be able to manipulate proteins for which there is no developed pharmacology, and to allow optogenetic manipulations in primate cortex. As the association cortices greatly expand in brain evolution, research in nonhuman primates is particularly important for understanding the modulatory regulation of our highest order cognitive operations. PMID:26646567

  17. Physiological approaches to understanding molecular actions on dorsolateral prefrontal cortical neurons underlying higher cognitive processing

    PubMed Central

    WANG, Min; ARNSTEN, Amy F.T.

    2015-01-01

    Revealing how molecular mechanisms influence higher brain circuits in primates will be essential for understanding how genetic insults lead to increased risk of cognitive disorders. Traditionally, modulatory influences on higher cortical circuits have been examined using lesion techniques, where a brain region is depleted of a particular transmitter to determine how its loss impacts cognitive function. For example, depletion of catecholamines or acetylcholine from the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex produces striking deficits in working memory abilities. More directed techniques have utilized direct infusions of drug into a specific cortical site to try to circumvent compensatory changes that are common following transmitter depletion. The effects of drug on neuronal firing patterns are often studied using iontophoresis, where a minute amount of drug is moved into the brain using a tiny electrical current, thus minimizing the fluid flow that generally disrupts neuronal recordings. All of these approaches can be compared to systemic drug administration, which remains a key arena for the development of effective therapeutics for human cognitive disorders. Most recently, viral techniques are being developed to be able to manipulate proteins for which there is no developed pharmacology, and to allow optogenetic manipulations in primate cortex. As the association cortices greatly expand in brain evolution, research in nonhuman primates is particularly important for understanding the modulatory regulation of our highest order cognitive operations. PMID:26646567

  18. Changes in basal ganglia processing of cortical input following magnetic stimulation in Parkinsonism.

    PubMed

    Tischler, Hadass; Moran, Anan; Belelovsky, Katya; Bronfeld, Maya; Korngreen, Alon; Bar-Gad, Izhar

    2012-12-01

    Parkinsonism is associated with major changes in neuronal activity throughout the cortico-basal ganglia loop. Current measures quantify changes in baseline neuronal and network activity but do not capture alterations in information propagation throughout the system. Here, we applied a novel non-invasive magnetic stimulation approach using a custom-made mini-coil that enabled us to study transmission of neuronal activity throughout the cortico-basal ganglia loop in both normal and parkinsonian primates. By magnetically perturbing cortical activity while simultaneously recording neuronal responses along the cortico-basal ganglia loop, we were able to directly investigate modifications in descending cortical activity transmission. We found that in both the normal and parkinsonian states, cortical neurons displayed similar multi-phase firing rate modulations in response to magnetic stimulation. However, in the basal ganglia, large synaptically driven stereotypic neuronal modulation was present in the parkinsonian state that was mostly absent in the normal state. The stimulation-induced neuronal activity pattern highlights the change in information propagation along the cortico-basal ganglia loop. Our findings thus point to the role of abnormal dynamic activity transmission rather than changes in baseline activity as a major component in parkinsonian pathophysiology. Moreover, our results hint that the application of transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) in human patients of different disorders may result in different neuronal effects than the one induced in normal subjects. PMID:22885186

  19. Cortical Transformation of Spatial Processing for Solving the Cocktail Party Problem: A Computational Model123

    PubMed Central

    Dong, Junzi; Colburn, H. Steven

    2016-01-01

    In multisource, “cocktail party” sound environments, human and animal auditory systems can use spatial cues to effectively separate and follow one source of sound over competing sources. While mechanisms to extract spatial cues such as interaural time differences (ITDs) are well understood in precortical areas, how such information is reused and transformed in higher cortical regions to represent segregated sound sources is not clear. We present a computational model describing a hypothesized neural network that spans spatial cue detection areas and the cortex. This network is based on recent physiological findings that cortical neurons selectively encode target stimuli in the presence of competing maskers based on source locations (Maddox et al., 2012). We demonstrate that key features of cortical responses can be generated by the model network, which exploits spatial interactions between inputs via lateral inhibition, enabling the spatial separation of target and interfering sources while allowing monitoring of a broader acoustic space when there is no competition. We present the model network along with testable experimental paradigms as a starting point for understanding the transformation and organization of spatial information from midbrain to cortex. This network is then extended to suggest engineering solutions that may be useful for hearing-assistive devices in solving the cocktail party problem. PMID:26866056

  20. Postmitotic regulation of sensory area patterning in the mammalian neocortex by Lhx2

    PubMed Central

    Perez-Garcia, Carlos G.; Wang, Chia-Fang; Chou, Shen-Ju; O’Leary, Dennis D. M.

    2015-01-01

    Current knowledge suggests that cortical sensory area identity is controlled by transcription factors (TFs) that specify area features in progenitor cells and subsequently their progeny in a one-step process. However, how neurons acquire and maintain these features is unclear. We have used conditional inactivation restricted to postmitotic cortical neurons in mice to investigate the role of the TF LIM homeobox 2 (Lhx2) in this process and report that in conditional mutant cortices area patterning is normal in progenitors but strongly affected in cortical plate (CP) neurons. We show that Lhx2 controls neocortical area patterning by regulating downstream genetic and epigenetic regulators that drive the acquisition of molecular properties in CP neurons. Our results question a strict hierarchy in which progenitors dominate area identity, suggesting a novel and more comprehensive two-step model of area patterning: In progenitors, patterning TFs prespecify sensory area blueprints. Sequentially, sustained function of alignment TFs, including Lhx2, is essential to maintain and to translate the blueprints into functional sensory area properties in cortical neurons postmitotically. Our results reemphasize critical roles for Lhx2 that acts as one of the terminal selector genes in controlling principal properties of neurons. PMID:25971728

  1. Focal cortical dysplasias in autism spectrum disorders

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Previous reports indicate the presence of histological abnormalities in the brains of individuals with autism spectrum disorders (ASD) suggestive of a dysplastic process. In this study we identified areas of abnormal cortical thinning within the cerebral cortex of ASD individuals and examined the same for neuronal morphometric abnormalities by using computerized image analysis. Results The study analyzed celloidin-embedded and Nissl-stained serial full coronal brain sections of 7 autistic (ADI-R diagnosed) and 7 age/sex-matched neurotypicals. Sections were scanned and manually segmented before implementing an algorithm using Laplace’s equation to measure cortical width. Identified areas were then subjected to analysis for neuronal morphometry. Results of our study indicate the presence within our ASD population of circumscribed foci of diminished cortical width that varied among affected individuals both in terms of location and overall size with the frontal lobes being particularly involved. Spatial statistic indicated a reduction in size of neurons within affected areas. Granulometry confirmed the presence of smaller pyramidal cells and suggested a concomitant reduction in the total number of interneurons. Conclusions The neuropathology is consistent with a diagnosis of focal cortical dysplasia (FCD). Results from the medical literature (e.g., heterotopias) and our own study suggest that the genesis of this cortical malformation seemingly resides in the heterochronic divisions of periventricular germinal cells. The end result is that during corticogenesis radially migrating neuroblasts (future pyramidal cells) are desynchronized in their development from those that follow a tangential route (interneurons). The possible presence of a pathological mechanism in common among different conditions expressing an autism-like phenotype argue in favor of considering ASD a “sequence” rather than a syndrome. Focal cortical dysplasias in ASD may serve to

  2. Sensory Conversion Devices

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Medelius, Pedro

    The human body has five basic sensory functions: touch, vision, hearing, taste, and smell. The effectiveness of one or more of these human sensory functions can be impaired as a result of trauma, congenital defects, or the normal ageing process. Converting one type of function into another, or translating a function to a different part of the body, could result in a better quality of life for a person with diminished sensorial capabilities.

  3. Sensory-motor processing in substantia nigra pars reticulata in conscious cats.

    PubMed Central

    Schwarz, M; Sontag, K H; Wand, P

    1984-01-01

    on s.n.r. neurones, taken together with previous findings on nigral influences on spinal motor circuitry, indicate that the s.n.r. represents an output station of the basal ganglia which is involved in the subconscious processing of convergent multimodal sensory information and which participates in setting appropriate gains and biasses of spinal motor neuronal systems to adequately deal with changing motor requirements. PMID:6707952

  4. Simulating Cortical Development as a Self Constructing Process: A Novel Multi-Scale Approach Combining Molecular and Physical Aspects

    PubMed Central

    Zubler, Frederic; Hauri, Andreas; Pfister, Sabina; Bauer, Roman; Anderson, John C.; Whatley, Adrian M.; Douglas, Rodney J.

    2013-01-01

    Current models of embryological development focus on intracellular processes such as gene expression and protein networks, rather than on the complex relationship between subcellular processes and the collective cellular organization these processes support. We have explored this collective behavior in the context of neocortical development, by modeling the expansion of a small number of progenitor cells into a laminated cortex with layer and cell type specific projections. The developmental process is steered by a formal language analogous to genomic instructions, and takes place in a physically realistic three-dimensional environment. A common genome inserted into individual cells control their individual behaviors, and thereby gives rise to collective developmental sequences in a biologically plausible manner. The simulation begins with a single progenitor cell containing the artificial genome. This progenitor then gives rise through a lineage of offspring to distinct populations of neuronal precursors that migrate to form the cortical laminae. The precursors differentiate by extending dendrites and axons, which reproduce the experimentally determined branching patterns of a number of different neuronal cell types observed in the cat visual cortex. This result is the first comprehensive demonstration of the principles of self-construction whereby the cortical architecture develops. In addition, our model makes several testable predictions concerning cell migration and branching mechanisms. PMID:23966845

  5. Brain Plasticity in Blind Subjects Centralizes Beyond the Modal Cortices

    PubMed Central

    Ortiz-Terán, Laura; Ortiz, Tomás; Perez, David L.; Aragón, Jose Ignacio; Diez, Ibai; Pascual-Leone, Alvaro; Sepulcre, Jorge

    2016-01-01

    It is well established that the human brain reorganizes following sensory deprivations. In blind individuals, visual processing regions including the lateral occipital cortex (LOC) are activated by auditory and tactile stimuli as demonstrated by neurophysiological and neuroimaging investigations. The mechanisms for such plasticity remain unclear, but shifts in connectivity across existing neural networks appear to play a critical role. The majority of research efforts to date have focused on neuroplastic changes within visual unimodal regions, however we hypothesized that neuroplastic alterations may also occur in brain networks beyond the visual cortices including involvement of multimodal integration regions and heteromodal cortices. In this study, two recently developed graph-theory based functional connectivity analyses, interconnector analyses and local and distant connectivity, were applied to investigate functional reorganization in regional and distributed neural-systems in late-onset blind (LB) and congenitally blind (CB) cohorts each compared to their own group of sighted controls. While functional network alterations as measured by the degree of differential links (DDL) occurred in sensory cortices, neuroplastic changes were most prominent within multimodal and association cortices. Subjects with LB showed enhanced multimodal integration connections in the parieto-opercular, temporoparietal junction (TPJ) and ventral premotor (vPM) regions, while CB individuals exhibited increased superior parietal cortex (SPC) connections. This study reveals the critical role of recipient multi-sensory integration areas in network reorganization and cross-modal plasticity in blind individuals. These findings suggest that aspects of cross-modal neuroplasticity and adaptive sensory-motor and auditory functions may potentially occur through reorganization in multimodal integration regions. PMID:27458350

  6. Brain Plasticity in Blind Subjects Centralizes Beyond the Modal Cortices.

    PubMed

    Ortiz-Terán, Laura; Ortiz, Tomás; Perez, David L; Aragón, Jose Ignacio; Diez, Ibai; Pascual-Leone, Alvaro; Sepulcre, Jorge

    2016-01-01

    It is well established that the human brain reorganizes following sensory deprivations. In blind individuals, visual processing regions including the lateral occipital cortex (LOC) are activated by auditory and tactile stimuli as demonstrated by neurophysiological and neuroimaging investigations. The mechanisms for such plasticity remain unclear, but shifts in connectivity across existing neural networks appear to play a critical role. The majority of research efforts to date have focused on neuroplastic changes within visual unimodal regions, however we hypothesized that neuroplastic alterations may also occur in brain networks beyond the visual cortices including involvement of multimodal integration regions and heteromodal cortices. In this study, two recently developed graph-theory based functional connectivity analyses, interconnector analyses and local and distant connectivity, were applied to investigate functional reorganization in regional and distributed neural-systems in late-onset blind (LB) and congenitally blind (CB) cohorts each compared to their own group of sighted controls. While functional network alterations as measured by the degree of differential links (DDL) occurred in sensory cortices, neuroplastic changes were most prominent within multimodal and association cortices. Subjects with LB showed enhanced multimodal integration connections in the parieto-opercular, temporoparietal junction (TPJ) and ventral premotor (vPM) regions, while CB individuals exhibited increased superior parietal cortex (SPC) connections. This study reveals the critical role of recipient multi-sensory integration areas in network reorganization and cross-modal plasticity in blind individuals. These findings suggest that aspects of cross-modal neuroplasticity and adaptive sensory-motor and auditory functions may potentially occur through reorganization in multimodal integration regions. PMID:27458350

  7. Sensory processing within cockroach antenna enables rapid implementation of feedback control for high-speed running maneuvers.

    PubMed

    Mongeau, Jean-Michel; Sponberg, Simon N; Miller, John P; Full, Robert J

    2015-08-01

    Animals are remarkably stable during high-speed maneuvers. As the speed of locomotion increases, neural bandwidth and processing delays can limit the ability to achieve and maintain stable control. Processing the information of sensory stimuli into a control signal within the sensor itself could enable rapid implementation of whole-body feedback control during high-speed locomotion. Here, we show that processing in antennal afferents is sufficient to act as the control signal for a fast sensorimotor loop. American cockroaches Periplaneta americana use their antennae to mediate escape running by tracking vertical surfaces such as walls. A control theoretic model of wall following predicts that stable control is possible if the animal can compute wall position (P) and velocity, its derivative (D). Previous whole-nerve recordings from the antenna during simulated turning experiments demonstrated a population response consistent with P and D encoding, and suggested that the response was synchronized with the timing of a turn executed while wall following. Here, we record extracellularly from individual mechanoreceptors distributed along the antenna and show that these receptors encode D and have distinct latencies and filtering properties. The summed output of these receptors can be used as a control signal for rapid steering maneuvers. The D encoding within the antenna in addition to the temporal filtering properties and P dependence of the population of afferents support a sensory-encoding notion from control theory. Our findings support the notion that peripheral sensory processing can enable rapid implementation of whole-body feedback control during rapid running maneuvers. PMID:26026042

  8. Two-photon scanning microscopy of in vivo sensory responses of cortical neurons genetically encoded with a fluorescent voltage sensor in rat

    PubMed Central

    Ahrens, Kurt F.; Heider, Barbara; Lee, Hanson; Isacoff, Ehud Y.; Siegel, Ralph M.

    2012-01-01

    A fluorescent voltage sensor protein “Flare” was created from a Kv1.4 potassium channel with YFP situated to report voltage-induced conformational changes in vivo. The RNA virus Sindbis introduced Flare into neurons in the binocular region of visual cortex in rat. Injection sites were selected based on intrinsic optical imaging. Expression of Flare occurred in the cell bodies and dendritic processes. Neurons imaged in vivo using two-photon scanning microscopy typically revealed the soma best, discernable against the background labeling of the neuropil. Somatic fluorescence changes were correlated with flashed visual stimuli; however, averaging was essential to observe these changes. This study demonstrates that the genetic modification of single neurons to express a fluorescent voltage sensor can be used to assess neuronal activity in vivo. PMID:22461770

  9. Functional role of induced gamma oscillatory responses in processing noxious and innocuous sensory events in humans.

    PubMed

    Liu, C C; Chien, J H; Chang, Y W; Kim, J H; Anderson, W S; Lenz, F A

    2015-12-01

    Gamma time-frequency responses (TFRs) induced by painful laser in the contralateral primary somatosensory (SI) cortex have been shown to correlate with perceived pain-intensity in human. Given the functional roles of gamma TFRs in the cortical spaces, it remains unclear whether such a relationship is sustained for other brain regions where the laser-evoked potentials (LEPs) are presented. In this study, we delivered the painful laser pluses at random pain-intensity levels (i.e. strong, medium and weak) in a single train to the dorsal hand of six patients with uncontrolled epilepsy. The laser stimulus produced a painful pinprick sensation by activating nociceptors located in the superficial layers of the skin. For each patient, arrays of >64 subdural electrodes were implanted directly covering the contralateral SI, parasylvian (PS) and medial frontal (MF) cortices to study the stimulus related gamma (TFRs) in the neocortex. In addition, using the same stimulation paradigm, the modality specificity of gamma TFRs was further examined by applying innocuous vibrotactile stimuli to the same regions of the dorsal hand in a separated group of five patients. Our results showed that gamma TFRs are not modality specific, but the largest gamma TFRs were consistently found within the SI region and noxious laser elicited significantly stronger gamma TFRs than innocuous nonpainful vibratory stimuli. Furthermore, stronger pain induced stronger gamma TFRs in the cortices of SI (r=0.4, p<0.001) and PS (r=0.29, p=0.005). Given that potentially harmful noxious stimulus would automatically capture greater attention than the innocuous ones, our results support the hypothesis that the degree of SI and PS gamma TFRs is associated with an attentional drive provoked by painful stimuli. PMID:26408986

  10. Sensory sensitivities and performance on sensory perceptual tasks in high-functioning individuals with autism

    PubMed Central

    Minshew, Nancy J.; Hobson, Jessica A.

    2011-01-01

    Despite extensive reports of sensory symptoms in autism, there is little empirical support for their neurological basis. Sixty individuals with high-functioning autism and 61 matched typical comparison participants were administered a sensory questionnaire and standardized neuropsychological tests of elementary and higher cortical sensory perception. Thirty-two per cent of participants with autism endorsed more sensory sensitivity items than any of the participants in the comparison group. On the sensory perceptual exam, both groups made few errors on elementary sensory perception items. Controls made few errors on higher cortical sensory perception items, but 30% of the participants with autism made high numbers of errors, though there was no evidence of the neglect syndrome. There was little correlation between the sensory sensitivities and the sensory perceptual deficits, likely due to the low correspondence between the measures. These results support the common occurrence of disturbances in sensory experiences in high functioning individuals with autism based on first person report, and the presence of neurological abnormalities in higher cortical sensory perception. PMID:18302014

  11. Visual, Auditory, and Cross Modal Sensory Processing in Adults with Autism: An EEG Power and BOLD fMRI Investigation.

    PubMed

    Hames, Elizabeth' C; Murphy, Brandi; Rajmohan, Ravi; Anderson, Ronald C; Baker, Mary; Zupancic, Stephen; O'Boyle, Michael; Richman, David

    2016-01-01

    Electroencephalography (EEG) and blood oxygen level dependent functional magnetic resonance imagining (BOLD fMRI) assessed the neurocorrelates of sensory processing of visual and auditory stimuli in 11 adults with autism (ASD) and 10 neurotypical (NT) controls between the ages of 20-28. We hypothesized that ASD performance on combined audiovisual trials would be less accurate with observable decreased EEG power across frontal, temporal, and occipital channels and decreased BOLD fMRI activity in these same regions; reflecting deficits in key sensory processing areas. Analysis focused on EEG power, BOLD fMRI, and accuracy. Lower EEG beta power and lower left auditory cortex fMRI activity were seen in ASD compared to NT when they were presented with auditory stimuli as demonstrated by contrasting the activity from the second presentation of an auditory stimulus in an all auditory block vs. the second presentation of a visual stimulus in an all visual block (AA2-VV2).We conclude that in ASD, combined audiovisual processing is more similar than unimodal processing to NTs. PMID:27148020

  12. Visual, Auditory, and Cross Modal Sensory Processing in Adults with Autism: An EEG Power and BOLD fMRI Investigation

    PubMed Central

    Hames, Elizabeth’ C.; Murphy, Brandi; Rajmohan, Ravi; Anderson, Ronald C.; Baker, Mary; Zupancic, Stephen; O’Boyle, Michael; Richman, David

    2016-01-01

    Electroencephalography (EEG) and blood oxygen level dependent functional magnetic resonance imagining (BOLD fMRI) assessed the neurocorrelates of sensory processing of visual and auditory stimuli in 11 adults with autism (ASD) and 10 neurotypical (NT) controls between the ages of 20–28. We hypothesized that ASD performance on combined audiovisual trials would be less accurate with observable decreased EEG power across frontal, temporal, and occipital channels and decreased BOLD fMRI activity in these same regions; reflecting deficits in key sensory processing areas. Analysis focused on EEG power, BOLD fMRI, and accuracy. Lower EEG beta power and lower left auditory cortex fMRI activity were seen in ASD compared to NT when they were presented with auditory stimuli as demonstrated by contrasting the activity from the second presentation of an auditory stimulus in an all auditory block vs. the second presentation of a visual stimulus in an all visual block (AA2-VV2).We conclude that in ASD, combined audiovisual processing is more similar than unimodal processing to NTs. PMID:27148020

  13. Wine Processing: A Critical Review of Physical, Chemical, and Sensory Implications of Innovative Vinification Procedures.

    PubMed

    Baiano, Antonietta; Scrocco, Carmela; Sepielli, Grazia; Del Nobile, Matteo Alessandro

    2016-10-25

    Wine is one of the most popular alcoholic beverages in the world, although it is mainly consumed in European and South American countries. Several thousand years have passed since the product of grape fermentation was accidentally discovered. Over the last 100-150 years, winemaking has been completely revolutionized in terms of procedures and equipment. This work is aimed to give a comprehensive overview of the consolidated use of winemaking innovations that are still in the development stage or already applied to commercial products. Their effects on physical, chemical, and sensory characteristics of wines will also be discussed in comparison with the consolidated vinification procedures. PMID:25629416

  14. [Dynamics of terminal plaque structure during changes in the impulse activity of sensory endings in the process of their regeneration].

    PubMed

    Zamuraev, I N; Khonny, O A

    2002-01-01

    The dynamics of changes in terminal plates of frog's urinary bladder sensory free visceroceptors during their posttraumatic regeneration was studied. It was shown that during the time period from two months to one year the terminal plate number in receptor bush increased, while their average dimensions decreased and their shape changed. No correlations between the changes of afferent impulse activity and these morphological transformations were found. The data obtained suggest that terminal plates do not seem to participate in the generation of bioelectric activity, but rather appear to be the growth cones of non-myelinated terminal and thus are involved in repair processes. PMID:12108103

  15. Spatiotemporal SERT expression in cortical map development.

    PubMed

    Chen, Xiaoning; Petit, Emilie I; Dobrenis, Kostantin; Sze, Ji Ying

    2016-09-01

    The cerebral cortex is organized into morphologically distinct areas that provide biological frameworks underlying perception, cognition, and behavior. Profiling mouse and human cortical transcriptomes have revealed temporal-specific differential gene expression modules in distinct neocortical areas during cortical map establishment. However, the biological roles of spatiotemporal gene expression in cortical patterning and how cortical topographic gene expression is regulated are largely unknown. Here, we characterize temporal- and spatial-defined expression of serotonin (5-HT) transporter (SERT) in glutamatergic neurons during sensory map development in mice. SERT is transiently expressed in glutamatergic thalamic neurons projecting to sensory cortices and in pyramidal neurons in the prefrontal cortex (PFC) and hippocampus (HPC) during the period that lays down the basic functional neural circuits. We previously identified that knockout of SERT in the thalamic neurons blocks 5-HT uptake by their thalamocortical axons, resulting in excessive 5-HT signaling that impairs sensory map architecture. In contrast, here we show that selective SERT knockout in the PFC and HPC neurons does not perturb sensory map patterning. These data suggest that transient SERT expression in specific glutamatergic neurons provides area-specific instructions for cortical map patterning. Hence, genetic and pharmacological manipulations of this SERT function could illuminate the fundamental genetic programming of cortex-specific maps and biological roles of temporal-specific cortical topographic gene expression in normal development and mental disorders. PMID:27282696

  16. TUTORIAL: Beyond sensory substitution—learning the sixth sense

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nagel, Saskia K.; Carl, Christine; Kringe, Tobias; Märtin, Robert; König, Peter

    2005-12-01

    Rapid advances in neuroscience have sparked numerous efforts to study the neural correlate of consciousness. Prominent subjects include higher sensory area, distributed assemblies bound by synchronization of neuronal activity and neurons in specific cortical laminae. In contrast, it has been suggested that the quality of sensory awareness is determined by systematic change of afferent signals resulting from behaviour and knowledge thereof. Support for such skill-based theories of perception is provided by experiments on sensory substitution. Here, we pursue this line of thought and create new sensorimotor contingencies and, hence, a new quality of perception. Adult subjects received orientation information, obtained by a magnetic compass, via vibrotactile stimulation around the waist. After six weeks of training we evaluated integration of the new input by a battery of tests. The results indicate that the sensory information provided by the belt (1) is processed and boosts performance, (2) if inconsistent with other sensory signals leads to variable performance, (3) does interact with the vestibular nystagmus and (4) in half of the experimental subjects leads to qualitative changes of sensory experience. These data support the hypothesis that new sensorimotor contingencies can be learned and integrated into behaviour and affect perceptual experience.

  17. Synaptic communication and signal processing among sensory cells in taste buds

    PubMed Central

    Chaudhari, Nirupa

    2014-01-01

    Taste buds (sensory structures embedded in oral epithelium) show a remarkable diversity of transmitters synthesized and secreted locally. The known transmitters accumulate in a cell type selective manner, with 5-HT and noradrenaline being limited to presynaptic cells, GABA being synthesized in both presynaptic and glial-like cells, and acetylcholine and ATP used for signalling by receptor cells. Each of these transmitters participates in local negative or positive feedback circuits that target particular cell types. Overall, the role of ATP is the best elucidated. ATP serves as a principal afferent transmitter, and also is the key trigger for autocrine positive feedback and paracrine circuits that result in potentiation (via adenosine) or inhibition (via GABA or 5-HT). While many of the cellular receptors and mechanisms for these circuits are known, their impact on sensory detection and perception remains to be elaborated in most instances. This brief review examines what is known, and some of the open questions and controversies surrounding the transmitters and circuits of the taste periphery. PMID:24665098

  18. Cortico-cortical communication dynamics

    PubMed Central

    Roland, Per E.; Hilgetag, Claus C.; Deco, Gustavo

    2014-01-01

    In principle, cortico-cortical communication dynamics is simple: neurons in one cortical area communicate by sending action potentials that release glutamate and excite their target neurons in other cortical areas. In practice, knowledge about cortico-cortical communication dynamics is minute. One reason is that no current technique can capture the fast spatio-temporal cortico-cortical evolution of action potential transmission and membrane conductances with sufficient spatial resolution. A combination of optogenetics and monosynaptic tracing with virus can reveal the spatio-temporal cortico-cortical dynamics of specific neurons and their targets, but does not reveal how the dynamics evolves under natural conditions. Spontaneous ongoing action potentials also spread across cortical areas and are difficult to separate from structured evoked and intrinsic brain activity such as thinking. At a certain state of evolution, the dynamics may engage larger populations of neurons to drive the brain to decisions, percepts and behaviors. For example, successfully evolving dynamics to sensory transients can appear at the mesoscopic scale revealing how the transient is perceived. As a consequence of these methodological and conceptual difficulties, studies in this field comprise a wide range of computational models, large-scale measurements (e.g., by MEG, EEG), and a combination of invasive measurements in animal experiments. Further obstacles and challenges of studying cortico-cortical communication dynamics are outlined in this critical review. PMID:24847217

  19. Applications of brain blood flow imaging in behavioral neurophysiology: cortical field activation hypothesis

    SciTech Connect

    Roland, P.E.

    1985-01-01

    The /sup 133/xenon intracarotid method for rCBF measurements has been a very useful method for functional mapping and functional dissection of the cerebral cortex in humans. With this method it has been shown that different types of cortical information treatment activate different cortical areas and furthermore that sensory and motor functions of the cerebral cortex could be dissected into anatomical and informational subcomponents by behavioral manipulations. The brain organizes its own activity. One of the principles of organization was that the brain could recruit in advance cortical fields that were expected to participate in a certain type of information operation. During brain work in awake human beings the cerebral cortex was activated in fields that, projected on the cerebral surface, most often had a size greater than 3 CM/sup 2/. Such activated fields appeared no matter which type of information processing was going on in the brain: during planning and execution of voluntary movements, during preparation for sensory information processing, and during sensory information processing, as well as during cognitive brain work and retrieval of specific memories. Therefore, it was hypothesized that cortical field activation was the physiological manifestation of normal brain work in awake humans.

  20. The cortical organization of speech processing: feedback control and predictive coding the context of a dual-stream model.

    PubMed

    Hickok, Gregory

    2012-01-01

    Speech recognition is an active process that involves some form of predictive coding. This statement is relatively uncontroversial. What is less clear is the source of the prediction. The dual-stream model of speech processing suggests that there are two possible sources of predictive coding in speech perception: the motor speech system and the lexical-conceptual system. Here I provide an overview of the dual-stream model of speech processing and then discuss evidence concerning the source of predictive coding during speech recognition. I conclude that, in contrast to recent theoretical trends, the dorsal sensory-motor stream is not a source of forward prediction that can facilitate speech recognition. Rather, it is forward prediction coming out of the ventral stream that serves this function. PMID:22766458

  1. Age-related changes in the thickness of cortical zones in humans.

    PubMed

    McGinnis, Scott M; Brickhouse, Michael; Pascual, Belen; Dickerson, Bradford C

    2011-10-01

    Structural neuroimaging studies have demonstrated that all regions of the cortex are not affected equally by aging, with frontal regions appearing especially susceptible to atrophy. The "last in, first out" hypothesis posits that aging is, in a sense, the inverse of development: late-maturing regions of the brain are preferentially vulnerable to age-related loss of structural integrity. We tested this hypothesis by analyzing age-related changes in regional cortical thickness via three methods: (1) an exploratory linear regression of cortical thickness and age across the entire cortical mantle (2) an analysis of age-related differences in the thickness of zones of cortex defined by functional/cytoarchitectural affiliation (including primary sensory/motor, unimodal association, heteromodal association, and paralimbic zones), and (3) an analysis of age-related differences in the thickness of regions of cortex defined by surface area expansion in the period between birth and early adulthood. Subjects were grouped as young (aged 18-29, n = 138), middle-aged (aged 30-59, n = 80), young-old (aged 60-79, n = 60), and old-old (aged 80+, n = 38). Thinning of the cortex between young and middle-aged adults was greatest in heteromodal association cortex and regions of high postnatal surface area expansion. In contrast, thinning in old-old age was greatest in primary sensory/motor cortices and regions of low postnatal surface area expansion. In sum, these results lead us to propose a sequential "developmental-sensory" model of aging, in which developmental factors influence cortical vulnerability relatively early in the aging process, whereas later-in more advanced stages of aging-factors specific to primary sensory and motor cortices confer vulnerability. This model offers explicitly testable hypotheses and suggests the possibility that normal aging may potentially allow for multiple opportunities for intervention to promote the structural integrity of the cerebral

  2. Perlecan/Hspg2 Deficiency Alters the Pericellular Space of the Lacunocanalicular System Surrounding Osteocytic Processes in Cortical Bone

    PubMed Central

    Thompson, William R; Modla, Shannon; Grindel, Brian J; Czymmek, Kirk J; Kirn-Safran, Catherine B; Wang, Liyun; Duncan, Randall L; Farach-Carson, Mary C

    2011-01-01

    Osteocytes project long, slender processes throughout the mineralized matrix of bone, where they connect and communicate with effector cells. The interconnected cellular projections form the functional lacunocanalicular system, allowing fluid to pass for cell-to-cell communication and nutrient and waste exchange. Prevention of mineralization in the pericellular space of the lacunocanalicular pericellular space is crucial for uninhibited interstitial fluid movement. Factors contributing to the ability of the pericellular space of the lacunocanalicular system to remain open and unmineralized are unclear. Immunofluorescence and immunogold localization by transmission electron microscopy demonstrated perlecan/Hspg2 signal localized to the osteocyte lacunocanalicular system of cortical bone, and this proteoglycan was found in the pericellular space of the lacunocanalicular system. In this study we examined osteocyte lacunocanalicular morphology in mice deficient in the large heparan sulfate proteoglycan perlecan/Hspg2 in this tissue. Ultrastructural measurements with electron microscopy of perlecan/Hspg2-deficient mice demonstrated diminished osteocyte canalicular pericellular area, resulting from a reduction in the total canalicular area. Additionally, perlecan/Hspg2-deficient mice showed decreased canalicular density and a reduced number of transverse tethering elements per canaliculus. These data indicated that perlecan/Hspg2 contributed to the integrity of the osteocyte lacunocanalicular system by maintaining the size of the pericellular space, an essential task to promote uninhibited interstitial fluid movement in this mechanosensitive environment. This work thus identified a new barrier function for perlecan/Hspg2 in murine cortical bone. © 2011 American Society for Bone and Mineral Research. PMID:20814969

  3. Optimization of process conditions for Rohu fish in curry medium in retortable pouches using instrumental and sensory characteristics.

    PubMed

    Majumdar, Ranendra K; Dhar, Bahni; Roy, Deepayan; Saha, Apurba

    2015-09-01

    'Kalia', a popular preparation of Rohu fish, packed in four-layered laminated retort pouch was processed in a steam/air mixture over-pressure retort at 121.1 °C to three different F 0 values of 7, 8 and 9 min. Time-temperature data were collected during heat processing using an Ellab Sterilization Monitoring System. Texture profile such as hardness, springiness, gumminess and chewiness decreased as the F 0 value increased. The L* values decreased whereas a* and b* values increased with increasing F 0 value. Based on the commercial sterility, sensory evaluation, colour and texture profile analysis, F 0 value of 8 min and cook value of 66 min, with a total process time of 41.7 min at 121.1 °C was found satisfactory for the preparation of Rohu fish curry (Kalia) in retort pouches. PMID:26344980

  4. The highly sensitive brain: an fMRI study of sensory processing sensitivity and response to others' emotions

    PubMed Central

    Acevedo, Bianca P; Aron, Elaine N; Aron, Arthur; Sangster, Matthew-Donald; Collins, Nancy; Brown, Lucy L

    2014-01-01

    Background Theory and research suggest that sensory processing sensitivity (SPS), found in roughly 20% of humans and over 100 other species, is a trait associated with greater sensitivity and responsiveness to the environment and to social stimuli. Self-report studies have shown that high-SPS individuals are strongly affected by others' moods, but no previous study has examined neural systems engaged in response to others' emotions. Methods This study examined the neural correlates of SPS (measured by the standard short-form Highly Sensitive Person [HSP] scale) among 18 participants (10 females) while viewing photos of their romantic partners and of strangers displaying positive, negative, or neutral facial expressions. One year apart, 13 of the 18 participants were scanned twice. Results Across all conditions, HSP scores were associated with increased brain activation of regions involved in attention and action planning (in the cingulate and premotor area [PMA]). For happy and sad photo conditions, SPS was associated with activation of brain regions involved in awareness, integration of sensory information, empathy, and action planning (e.g., cingulate, insula, inferior frontal gyrus [IFG], middle temporal gyrus [MTG], and PMA). Conclusions As predicted, for partner images and for happy facial photos, HSP scores were associated with stronger activation of brain regions involved in awareness, empathy, and self-other processing. These results provide evidence that awareness and responsiveness are fundamental features of SPS, and show how the brain may mediate these traits. PMID:25161824

  5. Sensory gain control (amplification) as a mechanism of selective attention: electrophysiological and neuroimaging evidence.

    PubMed Central

    Hillyard, S A; Vogel, E K; Luck, S J

    1998-01-01

    Both physiological and behavioral studies have suggested that stimulus-driven neural activity in the sensory pathways can be modulated in amplitude during selective attention. Recordings of event-related brain potentials indicate that such sensory gain control or amplification processes play an important role in visual-spatial attention. Combined event-related brain potential and neuroimaging experiments provide strong evidence that attentional gain control operates at an early stage of visual processing in extrastriate cortical areas. These data support early selection theories of attention and provide a basis for distinguishing between separate mechanisms of attentional suppression (of unattended inputs) and attentional facilitation (of attended inputs). PMID:9770220

  6. Interfacing sensory input with motor output: does the control architecture converge to a serial process along a single channel?

    PubMed Central

    van de Kamp, Cornelis; Gawthrop, Peter J.; Gollee, Henrik; Lakie, Martin; Loram, Ian D.

    2013-01-01

    Modular organization in control architecture may underlie the versatility of human motor control; but the nature of the interface relating sensory input through task-selection in the space of performance variables to control actions in the space of the elemental variables is currently unknown. Our central question is whether the control architecture converges to a serial process along a single channel? In discrete reaction time experiments, psychologists have firmly associated a serial single channel hypothesis with refractoriness and response selection [psychological refractory period (PRP)]. Recently, we developed a methodology and evidence identifying refractoriness in sustained control of an external single degree-of-freedom system. We hypothesize that multi-segmental whole-body control also shows refractoriness. Eight participants controlled their whole body to ensure a head marker tracked a target as fast and accurately as possible. Analysis showed enhanced delays in response to stimuli with close temporal proximity to the preceding stimulus. Consistent with our preceding work, this evidence is incompatible with control as a linear time invariant process. This evidence is consistent with a single-channel serial ballistic process within the intermittent control paradigm with an intermittent interval of around 0.5 s. A control architecture reproducing intentional human movement control must reproduce refractoriness. Intermittent control is designed to provide computational time for an online optimization process and is appropriate for flexible adaptive control. For human motor control we suggest that parallel sensory input converges to a serial, single channel process involving planning, selection, and temporal inhibition of alternative responses prior to low dimensional motor output. Such design could aid robots to reproduce the flexibility of human control. PMID:23675342

  7. Effect of combined underwater processing and mild pre-cut heat treatment on the sensory quality and storage of fresh-cut cantaloupe melon.

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Fresh cut fruit, mildly preheated and processed underwater, was shown to have superior sensory quality attributes compared to the control fresh cut fruit processed totally in open air. Less leakage of ions and enhanced plasma membrane integrity was displayed in both the fresh cut fruit processed un...

  8. Right-left asymmetry in the cortical processing of sounds for social communication vs. navigation in mustached bats.

    PubMed

    Kanwal, Jagmeet S

    2012-01-01

    In the Doppler-shifted constant frequency processing area in the primary auditory cortex of mustached bats, Pteronotus parnellii, neurons respond to both social calls and to echolocation signals. This multifunctional nature of cortical neurons creates a paradox for simultaneous processing of two behaviorally distinct categories of sound. To test the possibility of a stimulus-specific hemispheric bias, single-unit responses were obtained to both types of sounds, calls and pulse-echo tone pairs, from the right and left auditory cortex. Neurons on the left exhibited only slightly higher peak response magnitudes for their respective best calls, but they showed a significantly higher sensitivity (lower response thresholds) to calls than neurons on the right. On average, call-to-tone response ratios were significantly higher for neurons on the left than for those on the right. Neurons on the right responded significantly more strongly to pulse-echo tone pairs than those on the left. Overall, neurons in males responded to pulse-echo tone pairs with a much higher spike count compared to females, but this difference was less pronounced for calls. Multidimensional scaling of call responses yielded a segregated representation of call types only on the left. These data establish for the first time, a behaviorally directed right-left asymmetry at the level of single cortical neurons. It is proposed that a lateralized cortex emerges from multiparametric integration (e.g. combination-sensitivity) within a neuron and inhibitory interactions between neurons that come into play during the processing of complex sounds. PMID:22211945

  9. Modeling the Formation Process of Grouping Stimuli Sets through Cortical Columns and Microcircuits to Feature Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Williamson, Adam

    2013-01-01

    A computational model of a self-structuring neuronal net is presented in which repetitively applied pattern sets induce the formation of cortical columns and microcircuits which decode distinct patterns after a learning phase. In a case study, it is demonstrated how specific neurons in a feature classifier layer become orientation selective if they receive bar patterns of different slopes from an input layer. The input layer is mapped and intertwined by self-evolving neuronal microcircuits to the feature classifier layer. In this topical overview, several models are discussed which indicate that the net formation converges in its functionality to a mathematical transform which maps the input pattern space to a feature representing output space. The self-learning of the mathematical transform is discussed and its implications are interpreted. Model assumptions are deduced which serve as a guide to apply model derived repetitive stimuli pattern sets to in vitro cultures of neuron ensembles to condition them to learn and execute a mathematical transform. PMID:24369455

  10. Response Surface Optimization of Process Parameters and Fuzzy Analysis of Sensory Data of High Pressure-Temperature Treated Pineapple Puree.

    PubMed

    Chakraborty, Snehasis; Rao, Pavuluri Srinivasa; Mishra, Hari Niwas

    2015-08-01

    The high-pressure processing conditions were optimized for pineapple puree within the domain of 400-600 MPa, 40-60 °C, and 10-20 min using the response surface methodology (RSM). The target was to maximize the inactivation of polyphenoloxidase (PPO) along with a minimal loss in beneficial bromelain (BRM) activity, ascorbic acid (AA) content, antioxidant capacity, and color in the sample. The optimum condition was 600 MPa, 50 °C, and 13 min, having the highest desirability of 0.604, which resulted in 44% PPO and 47% BRM activities. However, 93% antioxidant activity and 85% AA were retained in optimized sample with a total color change (∆E*) value less than 2.5. A 10-fold reduction in PPO activity was obtained at 600 MPa/70 °C/20 min; however, the thermal degradation of nutrients was severe at this condition. Fuzzy mathematical approach confirmed that sensory acceptance of the optimized sample was close to the fresh sample; whereas, the thermally pasteurized sample (treated at 0.1 MPa, 95 °C for 12 min) had the least sensory score as compared to others. PMID:26220205

  11. Cross-modal plasticity in sensory deprived animal models: From the thalamocortical development point of view.

    PubMed

    Mezzera, Cecilia; López-Bendito, Guillermina

    2016-09-01

    Over recent decades, our understanding of the plasticity of the central nervous system has expanded enormously. Accordingly, it is now widely accepted that the brain can adapt to changes by reorganizing its circuitry, both in response to external stimuli and experience, as well as through intrinsic mechanisms. A clear example of this is the activation of a deprived sensory area and the expansion of spared sensory cortical regions in individuals who suffered peripheral sensory loss. Despite the efforts to understand these neuroplastic changes, the mechanisms underlying such adaptive remodeling remains poorly understood. Progress in understanding these events may be hindered by the highly varied data obtained from the distinct experimental paradigms analyzed, which include different animal models and neuronal systems, as well as studies into the onset of sensory loss. Here, we will establish the current state-of-the-art describing the principal observations made according to the time of sensory deprivation with respect to the development of the thalamocortical connectivity. We will review the experimental data obtained from animal models where sensory deprivation has been induced either before or after thalamocortical axons reach and invade their target cortical areas. The anatomical and functional effects of sensory loss on the primary sensory areas of the cortex will be presented. Indeed, we consider that the comparative approach of this review is a necessary step in order to help deciphering the processes that underlie sensory neuroplasticity, for which studies in animal models have been indispensable. Understanding these mechanisms will then help to develop restorative strategies and prostheses that will overcome the functional loss. PMID:26459021

  12. Positron emission tomographic studies of sensory stimuli, cognitive processes and anxiety.

    PubMed

    Reivich, M; Gur, R; Alavi, A

    1983-01-01

    Research in detecting regional changes in brain metabolism related to functional activity is reviewed and supplemented by original results from positron emission tomography (PET) and the 18F-fluorodeoxyglucose method (FDG). A formula for calculating the value of local cerebral glucose metabolism (LCMRGlc) is discussed. Results concerning auditory stimulation suggest that metabolic responses are determined by the stimulus content and analysis strategy used by the subject rather than the side of stimulation. Tactile stimulation of the hand and fingers caused asymmetrical increases in LCMRGlc confirming topographic maps of the postcentral gyrus and other functional studies. Data from visually stimulated normal subjects show how the visual hemifields project to the opposite calcarine cortex. Studies of patients with hemianopsia or various field defects demonstrated that metabolic scanning can reveal alterations of cortical function not detectable by CT scan. Data obtained reveal the ability of metabolic mapping to subdivide the occipital cortex into distinct regions. Such measurements may also anticipate the course of visual recovery. Findings of increased overall right-hemispheric metabolism during the performance of verbal and spatial cognitive tasks are consistent with earlier results from right-handed males. Results for the frontal eye fields provide the first experimental evidence that lateralized metabolic activity, produced by cognitive tasks, causes similarly lateralized activity within a motor region. It is further demonstrated that FDG is able to provide information on such states as vigilance and anxiety. PMID:6603451

  13. Visual change detection recruits auditory cortices in early deafness.

    PubMed

    Bottari, Davide; Heimler, Benedetta; Caclin, Anne; Dalmolin, Anna; Giard, Marie-Hélène; Pavani, Francesco

    2014-07-01

    Although cross-modal recruitment of early sensory areas in deafness and blindness is well established, the constraints and limits of these plastic changes remain to be understood. In the case of human deafness, for instance, it is known that visual, tactile or visuo-tactile stimuli can elicit a response within the auditory cortices. Nonetheless, both the timing of these evoked responses and the functional contribution of cross-modally recruited areas remain to be ascertained. In the present study, we examined to what extent auditory cortices of deaf humans participate in high-order visual processes, such as visual change detection. By measuring visual ERPs, in particular the visual MisMatch Negativity (vMMN), and performing source localization, we show that individuals with early deafness (N=12) recruit the auditory cortices when a change in motion direction during shape deformation occurs in a continuous visual motion stream. Remarkably this "auditory" response for visual events emerged with the same timing as the visual MMN in hearing controls (N=12), between 150 and 300 ms after the visual change. Furthermore, the recruitment of auditory cortices for visual change detection in early deaf was paired with a reduction of response within the visual system, indicating a shift from visual to auditory cortices of part of the computational process. The present study suggests that the deafened auditory cortices participate at extracting and storing the visual information and at comparing on-line the upcoming visual events, thus indicating that cross-modally recruited auditory cortices can reach this level of computation. PMID:24636881

  14. [Effect of narcotic analgesics on the cortical control process of impulse transmission in the afferent pathways of the sciatic nerve].

    PubMed

    Churiukanov, V V; Bilibin, D P

    1976-01-01

    The effect produced by narcotic analgetics with their intravenous administration on the process of cortical control over the transmission of impulses along specific routes of the sciatic nerve was studied. The conditioning stimulation of the cortex was effected by using a monopolar electrode through single electric impulses. The interval between conditioning and test (on sciatic nerve) impulses was of 80-120 ms. Morphine (1-2 mg/kg), promedol (trimeperidin) (1-2 mg/kg) and phentanyl (100 gamma/kg) potentiated the inhibition of evoked potentials in the nucleus gracilis and in VPL, observed upon stimulation of the cortex of optic lobuses. The intensification of inhibitory corticifugal mechanisms occurring under the effect of narcotic analgetics takes place both on the level of the medulla oblongata and of the thalamic one. PMID:6310

  15. Identification, quantification, and sensory characterization of steviol glycosides from differently processed Stevia rebaudiana commercial extracts.

    PubMed

    Espinoza, María Inés; Vincken, Jean-Paul; Sanders, Mark; Castro, Cristian; Stieger, Markus; Agosin, Eduardo

    2014-12-10

    Stevia rebaudiana is known for its sweet-tasting ent-kaurene diterpenoid glycosides. Several manufacturing strategies are currently employed to obtain Stevia sweeteners with the lowest possible off-flavors. The chemical composition of four commercial S. rebaudiana extracts, obtained by different technologies, was characterized using UHPLC-ESI-MS(n). The composition of one of the ethanol-crystallized extracts (EC2) was entirely rebaudioside A, whereas the enzymatically modified (EM) extract contained the lowest concentration of this compound (2.7 mg/100 mg). The membrane-purified (MP) extract had the highest content of minor natural steviol glycosides (23.7 mg/100 mg total extract) versus an average of 2.4 mg/100 mg total extract for the EC samples. Thirteen trained panelists evaluated sweetness, bitterness, licorice, and metallic attributes of all four extracts. The highest licorice intensity (p ≤ 0.05) was found for MP. Both samples EC1 and EC2, despite their different chemical compositions, showed no significant differences in sensory perception. PMID:25393842

  16. Involvement of Sensory Regions in Affective Experience: A Meta-Analysis

    PubMed Central

    Satpute, Ajay B.; Kang, Jian; Bickart, Kevin C.; Yardley, Helena; Wager, Tor D.; Barrett, Lisa F.

    2015-01-01

    A growing body of work suggests that sensory processes may also contribute to affective experience. In this study, we performed a meta-analysis of affective experiences driven through visual, auditory, olfactory, gustatory, and somatosensory stimulus modalities including study contrasts that compared affective stimuli to matched neutral control stimuli. We found, first, that limbic and paralimbic regions, including the amygdala, anterior insula, pre-supplementary motor area, and portions of orbitofrontal cortex were consistently engaged across two or more modalities. Second, early sensory input regions in occipital, temporal, piriform, mid-insular, and primary sensory cortex were frequently engaged during affective experiences driven by visual, auditory, olfactory, gustatory, and somatosensory inputs. A classification analysis demonstrated that the pattern of neural activity across a contrast map diagnosed the stimulus modality driving the affective experience. These findings suggest that affective experiences are constructed from activity that is distributed across limbic and paralimbic brain regions and also activity in sensory cortical regions. PMID:26696928

  17. Sensory mononeuropathies.

    PubMed

    Massey, E W

    1998-01-01

    The clinical neurologist frequently encounters patients with a variety of focal sensory symptoms and signs. This article reviews the clinical features, etiologies, laboratory findings, and management of the common sensory mononeuropathies including meralgia paresthetica, cheiralgia paresthetica, notalgia paresthetica, gonyalgia paresthetica, digitalgia paresthetica, intercostal neuropathy, and mental neuropathy. PMID:9608615

  18. Early visual processing for low spatial frequency fearful face is correlated with cortical volume in patients with schizophrenia.

    PubMed

    Lee, Jung Suk; Park, Gewnhi; Song, Myeong Ju; Choi, Kee-Hong; Lee, Seung-Hwan

    2016-01-01

    Patients with schizophrenia present with dysfunction of the magnocellular pathway, which might impair their early visual processing. We explored the relationship between functional abnormality of early visual processing and brain volumetric changes in schizophrenia. Eighteen patients and 16 healthy controls underwent electroencephalographic recordings and high-resolution magnetic resonance imaging. During electroencephalographic recordings, participants passively viewed neutral or fearful faces with broad, high, or low spatial frequency characteristics. Voxel-based morphometry was performed to investigate brain volume correlates of visual processing deficits. Event related potential analysis suggested that patients with schizophrenia had relatively impaired P100 processing of low spatial frequency fearful face stimuli compared with healthy controls; patients' gray-matter volumes in the dorsolateral and medial prefrontal cortices positively correlated with this amplitude. In addition, patients' gray-matter volume in the right cuneus positively correlated with the P100 amplitude in the left hemisphere for the high spatial frequency neutral face condition and that in the left dorsolateral prefrontal cortex negatively correlated with the negative score of the Positive and Negative Syndrome Scale. No significant correlations were observed in healthy controls. This study suggests that the cuneus and prefrontal cortex are significantly involved with the early visual processing of magnocellular input in patients with schizophrenia. PMID:26730192

  19. Inactivation of Cerebellar Cortical Crus II Disrupts Temporal Processing of Absolute Timing but not Relative Timing in Voluntary Movements

    PubMed Central

    Yamaguchi, Kenji; Sakurai, Yoshio

    2016-01-01

    Several recent studies have demonstrated that the cerebellum plays an important role in temporal processing at the scale of milliseconds. However, it is not clear whether intrinsic cerebellar function involves the temporal processing of discrete or continuous events. Temporal processing during discrete events functions by counting absolute time like a stopwatch, while during continuous events it measures events at intervals. During the temporal processing of continuous events, animals might respond to rhythmic timing of sequential responses rather than to the absolute durations of intervals. Here, we tested the contribution of the cerebellar cortex to temporal processing of absolute and relative timings in voluntary movements. We injected muscimol and baclofen to a part of the cerebellar cortex of rats. We then tested the accuracy of their absolute or relative timing prediction using two timing tasks requiring almost identical reaching movements. Inactivation of the cerebellar cortex disrupted accurate temporal prediction in the absolute timing task. The rats formed two groups based on the changes to their timing accuracy following one of two distinct patterns which can be described as longer or shorter declines in the accuracy of learned intervals. However, a part of the cerebellar cortical inactivation did not affect the rats’ performance of relative timing tasks. We concluded that a part of the cerebellar cortex, Crus II, contributes to the accurate temporal prediction of absolute timing and that the entire cerebellar cortex may be unnecessary in cases in which accurately knowing the absolute duration of an interval is not required for temporal prediction. PMID:26941621

  20. Anatomical imbalance between cortical networks in autism

    PubMed Central

    Watanabe, Takamitsu; Rees, Geraint

    2016-01-01

    Influential psychological models of autism spectrum disorder (ASD) have proposed that this prevalent developmental disorder results from impairment of global (integrative) information processing and overload of local (sensory) information. However, little neuroanatomical evidence consistent with this account has been reported. Here, we examined relative grey matter volumes (rGMVs) between three cortical networks, how they changed with age, and their relationship with core symptomatology. Using public neuroimaging data of high-functioning ASD males and age-/sex-/IQ-matched controls, we first identified age-associated atypical increases in rGMVs of the regions of two sensory systems (auditory and visual networks), and an age-related aberrant decrease in rGMV of a task-control system (fronto-parietal network, FPN) in ASD children. While the enlarged rGMV of the auditory network in ASD adults was associated with the severity of autistic socio-communicational core symptom, that of the visual network was instead correlated with the severity of restricted and repetitive behaviours in ASD. Notably, the atypically decreased rGMV of FPN predicted both of the two core symptoms. These findings suggest that disproportionate undergrowth of a task-control system (FPN) may be a common anatomical basis for the two ASD core symptoms, and relative overgrowth of the two different sensory systems selectively compounds the distinct symptoms. PMID:27484308

  1. Anatomical imbalance between cortical networks in autism.

    PubMed

    Watanabe, Takamitsu; Rees, Geraint

    2016-01-01

    Influential psychological models of autism spectrum disorder (ASD) have proposed that this prevalent developmental disorder results from impairment of global (integrative) information processing and overload of local (sensory) information. However, little neuroanatomical evidence consistent with this account has been reported. Here, we examined relative grey matter volumes (rGMVs) between three cortical networks, how they changed with age, and their relationship with core symptomatology. Using public neuroimaging data of high-functioning ASD males and age-/sex-/IQ-matched controls, we first identified age-associated atypical increases in rGMVs of the regions of two sensory systems (auditory and visual networks), and an age-related aberrant decrease in rGMV of a task-control system (fronto-parietal network, FPN) in ASD children. While the enlarged rGMV of the auditory network in ASD adults was associated with the severity of autistic socio-communicational core symptom, that of the visual network was instead correlated with the severity of restricted and repetitive behaviours in ASD. Notably, the atypically decreased rGMV of FPN predicted both of the two core symptoms. These findings suggest that disproportionate undergrowth of a task-control system (FPN) may be a common anatomical basis for the two ASD core symptoms, and relative overgrowth of the two different sensory systems selectively compounds the distinct symptoms. PMID:27484308

  2. Speech encoding by coupled cortical theta and gamma oscillations.

    PubMed

    Hyafil, Alexandre; Fontolan, Lorenzo; Kabdebon, Claire; Gutkin, Boris; Giraud, Anne-Lise

    2015-01-01

    Many environmental stimuli present a quasi-rhythmic structure at different timescales that the brain needs to decompose and integrate. Cortical oscillations have been proposed as instruments of sensory de-multiplexing, i.e., the parallel processing of different frequency streams in sensory signals. Yet their causal role in such a process has never been demonstrated. Here, we used a neural microcircuit model to address whether coupled theta-gamma oscillations, as observed in human auditory cortex, could underpin the multiscale sensory analysis of speech. We show that, in continuous speech, theta oscillations can flexibly track the syllabic rhythm and temporally organize the phoneme-level response of gamma neurons into a code that enables syllable identification. The tracking of slow speech fluctuations by theta oscillations, and its coupling to gamma-spiking activity both appeared as critical features for accurate speech encoding. These results demonstrate that cortical oscillations can be a key instrument of speech de-multiplexing, parsing, and encoding. PMID:26023831

  3. Speech encoding by coupled cortical theta and gamma oscillations

    PubMed Central

    Hyafil, Alexandre; Fontolan, Lorenzo; Kabdebon, Claire; Gutkin, Boris; Giraud, Anne-Lise

    2015-01-01

    Many environmental stimuli present a quasi-rhythmic structure at different timescales that the brain needs to decompose and integrate. Cortical oscillations have been proposed as instruments of sensory de-multiplexing, i.e., the parallel processing of different frequency streams in sensory signals. Yet their causal role in such a process has never been demonstrated. Here, we used a neural microcircuit model to address whether coupled theta–gamma oscillations, as observed in human auditory cortex, could underpin the multiscale sensory analysis of speech. We show that, in continuous speech, theta oscillations can flexibly track the syllabic rhythm and temporally organize the phoneme-level response of gamma neurons into a code that enables syllable identification. The tracking of slow speech fluctuations by theta oscillations, and its coupling to gamma-spiking activity both appeared as critical features for accurate speech encoding. These results demonstrate that cortical oscillations can be a key instrument of speech de-multiplexing, parsing, and encoding. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.06213.001 PMID:26023831

  4. Using goal-driven deep learning models to understand sensory cortex.

    PubMed

    Yamins, Daniel L K; DiCarlo, James J

    2016-03-01

    Fueled by innovation in the computer vision and artificial intelligence communities, recent developments in computational neuroscience have used goal-driven hierarchical convolutional neural networks (HCNNs) to make strides in modeling neural single-unit and population responses in higher visual cortical areas. In this Perspective, we review the recent progress in a broader modeling context and describe some of the key technical innovations that have supported it. We then outline how the goal-driven HCNN approach can be used to delve even more deeply into understanding the development and organization of sensory cortical processing. PMID:26906502

  5. Electrophysiological properties of hippocampal-cortical neural networks, role in the processes of learning and memory in rats.

    PubMed

    Li, Chang-Jun; Lu, Yun; Zhou, Mei; Guo, Lian-Jun

    2014-06-01

    The recording of hippocampal and cortical long-term potentiation (LTP) in rats in vivo is an appropriate and commonly used method to describe changes in cellular mechanisms underlying synaptic plasticity. Recently, we introduced a method for the simultaneous recording of LTP in bilateral CA1 regions and parietal association cortex (PtA), and observed differences between the Schaffer collateral-CA1 pathway (SC), Schaffer collateral/associational commissural pathway (SAC) and Schaffer collateral/associational commissural-cortex pathway (SACC). In this study, we found that (1) synaptic transmission of the SAC and SACC pathways depended on hippocampal commissural fibers [dorsal and ventral hippocampal commissural fibers, the medial septum (MS) and hippocampal CA3 commissural fibers], (2) nerve conduction velocity of the SACC pathway might be higher than that of the SAC pathway, (3) the input/output (I/O) curve of the SC pathway was shifted to the left side, compared to that of the SAC and SACC pathways, (4) all three pathways could induce stable LTP; however, LTP of the SAC and SACC pathways was much stronger than that of the SC pathway, (5) the degree of paired-pulse facilitation (PPF) was weaker in the SC pathway than that in the SAC and SACC pathways, (6) after cutting off the corpus callosum and commissural fibers, spatial learning and memory were impaired, and the ability to explore the novel environment and spontaneous locomotor activity were weakened. Taken together, our results suggested that hippocampal commissural fibers were very important for exchanging information between hemispheres, and basic differences in electrophysiological properties of hippocampal-cortical neural networks play a vital role in the processes of learning and memory. PMID:24504908

  6. Sensorimotor function of the upper-airway muscles and respiratory sensory processing in untreated obstructive sleep apnea.

    PubMed

    Eckert, Danny J; Lo, Yu L; Saboisky, Julian P; Jordan, Amy S; White, David P; Malhotra, Atul

    2011-12-01

    Numerous studies have demonstrated upper-airway neuromuscular abnormalities during wakefulness in snorers and obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) patients. However, the functional role of sensorimotor impairment in OSA pathogenesis/disease progression and its potential effects on protective upper-airway reflexes, measures of respiratory sensory processing, and force characteristics remain unclear. This study aimed to gain physiological insight into the potential role of sensorimotor impairment in OSA pathogenesis/disease progression by comparing sensory processing properties (respiratory-related evoked potentials; RREP), functionally important protective reflexes (genioglossus and tensor palatini) across a range of negative pressures (brief pulses and entrained iron lung ventilation), and tongue force and time to task failure characteristics between 12 untreated OSA patients and 13 controls. We hypothesized that abnormalities in these measures would be present in OSA patients. Upper-airway reflexes (e.g., genioglossus onset latency, 20 ± 1 vs. 19 ± 2 ms, P = 0.82), early RREP components (e.g., P1 latency 25 ± 2 vs. 25 ± 1 ms, P = 0.78), and the slope of epiglottic pressure vs. genioglossus activity during iron lung ventilation (-0.68 ± 1.0 vs. -0.80 ± 2.0 cmH(2)O/%max, P = 0.59) were not different between patients and controls. Maximal tongue protrusion force was greater in OSA patients vs. controls (35 ± 2 vs. 27 ± 2 N, P < 0.01), but task failure occurred more rapidly (149 ± 24 vs. 254 ± 23 s, P < 0.01). Upper-airway protective reflexes across a range of negative pressures as measured by electromyography and the early P1 component of the RREP are preserved in OSA patients during wakefulness. Consistent with an adaptive training effect, tongue protrusion force is increased, not decreased, in untreated OSA patients. However, OSA patients may be vulnerable to fatigue of upper-airway dilator muscles, which could contribute to disease progression. PMID:21885797

  7. Cortical State and Attention

    PubMed Central

    Harris, Kenneth D.; Thiele, Alexander

    2012-01-01

    Preface The brain continuously adapts its processing machinery to behavioural demands. To achieve this it rapidly modulates the operating mode of cortical circuits, controlling the way information is transformed and routed. This article will focus on two experimental approaches by which the control of cortical information processing has been investigated: the study of state-dependent cortical processing in rodents, and attention in the primate visual system. Both processes involve a modulation of low-frequency activity fluctuations and spiking correlation, and are mediated by common receptor systems. We suggest that selective attention involves processes similar to state change, operating at a local columnar level to enhance the representation of otherwise nonsalient features while suppressing internally generated activity patterns. PMID:21829219

  8. Obsessive-compulsive disorder: a "sensory-motor" problem?

    PubMed

    Russo, M; Naro, A; Mastroeni, C; Morgante, F; Terranova, C; Muscatello, M R; Zoccali, R; Calabrò, R S; Quartarone, A

    2014-05-01

    Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) is a clinically heterogeneous condition. Although its pathophysiology is not completely understood, neurophysiologic and neuroimaging data have disclosed functional abnormalities in the networks linking frontal cortex, supplementary motor and premotor areas, striatum, globus pallidus, and thalamus (CSPT circuits). By means of transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) it is possible to test inhibitory and excitatory circuits within motor cortex. Previous studies on OCD patients under medication have demonstrated altered cortical inhibitory circuits as tested by TMS. On the other hand there is growing evidence suggesting an alteration of sensory-motor integration. Therefore, the aim of the present study was to evaluate sensory-motor integration (SAI and LAI), intracortical inhibition, and facilitation in drug-naïve OCD patients, using TMS. In our sample, we have demonstrated a significant SAI reduction in OCD patients when compared to a cohort of healthy individuals. SAI abnormalities may be related to a dysfunction of CSPT circuits which are involved in sensory-motor integration processes. Thus, it can be speculated that hypofunctioning of such system might impair the ability of OCD patients to suppress internally triggered intrusive and repetitive movements and thoughts. In conclusion, our data suggest that OCD may be considered as a sensory motor disorder where a dysfunction of sensory-motor integration may play an important role in the release of motor compulsions. PMID:24631627

  9. From Sensory Perception to Lexical-Semantic Processing: An ERP Study in Non-Verbal Children with Autism

    PubMed Central

    Cantiani, Chiara; Choudhury, Naseem A.; Yu, Yan H.; Shafer, Valerie L.; Schwartz, Richard G.; Benasich, April A.

    2016-01-01

    This study examines electrocortical activity associated with visual and auditory sensory perception and lexical-semantic processing in nonverbal (NV) or minimally-verbal (MV) children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). Currently, there is no agreement on whether these children comprehend incoming linguistic information and whether their perception is comparable to that of typically developing children. Event-related potentials (ERPs) of 10 NV/MV children with ASD and 10 neurotypical children were recorded during a picture-word matching paradigm. Atypical ERP responses were evident at all levels of processing in children with ASD. Basic perceptual processing was delayed in both visual and auditory domains but overall was similar in amplitude to typically-developing children. However, significant differences between groups were found at the lexical-semantic level, suggesting more atypical higher-order processes. The results suggest that although basic perception is relatively preserved in NV/MV children with ASD, higher levels of processing, including lexical- semantic functions, are impaired. The use of passive ERP paradigms that do not require active participant response shows significant potential for assessment of non-compliant populations such as NV/MV children with ASD. PMID:27560378

  10. From Sensory Perception to Lexical-Semantic Processing: An ERP Study in Non-Verbal Children with Autism.

    PubMed

    Cantiani, Chiara; Choudhury, Naseem A; Yu, Yan H; Shafer, Valerie L; Schwartz, Richard G; Benasich, April A

    2016-01-01

    This study examines electrocortical activity associated with visual and auditory sensory perception and lexical-semantic processing in nonverbal (NV) or minimally-verbal (MV) children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). Currently, there is no agreement on whether these children comprehend incoming linguistic information and whether their perception is comparable to that of typically developing children. Event-related potentials (ERPs) of 10 NV/MV children with ASD and 10 neurotypical children were recorded during a picture-word matching paradigm. Atypical ERP responses were evident at all levels of processing in children with ASD. Basic perceptual processing was delayed in both visual and auditory domains but overall was similar in amplitude to typically-developing children. However, significant differences between groups were found at the lexical-semantic level, suggesting more atypical higher-order processes. The results suggest that although basic perception is relatively preserved in NV/MV children with ASD, higher levels of processing, including lexical- semantic functions, are impaired. The use of passive ERP paradigms that do not require active participant response shows significant potential for assessment of non-compliant populations such as NV/MV children with ASD. PMID:27560378

  11. Pharmacology of cortical inhibition

    PubMed Central

    Krnjević, K.; Randić, Mirjana; Straughan, D. W.

    1966-01-01

    1. We have studied the effects of various pharmacological agents on the cortical inhibitory process described in the previous two papers (Krnjević, Randić & Straughan, 1966a, b); the drugs were mostly administered directly by iontophoresis from micropipettes and by systemic injection (I.V.). 2. Strychnine given by iontophoresis or by the application of a strong solution to the cortical surface potentiated excitatory effects, but very large iontophoretic doses also depressed neuronal firing. Subconvulsive and even convulsive systemic doses had little or no effect at the cortical level. There was no evidence, with any method of application, that strychnine directly interferes with the inhibitory process. 3. Tetanus toxin, obtained from two different sources and injected into the cortex 12-48 hr previously, also failed to block cortical inhibition selectively. As with strychnine, there was some evidence of increased responses to excitatory inputs. 4. Other convulsant drugs which failed to block cortical inhibition included picrotoxin, pentamethylene tetrazole, thiosemicarbazide, longchain ω-amino acids and morphine. 5. The inhibition was not obviously affected by cholinomimetic agents or by antagonists of ACh. 6. α- and β-antagonists of adrenergic transmission were also ineffective. 7. Cortical inhibition was fully developed in the presence of several general anaesthetics, including ether, Dial, pentobarbitone, Mg and chloralose. A temporary reduction in inhibition which is sometimes observed after systemic doses of pentobarbitone, is probably secondary to a fall in blood pressure. 8. Several central excitants such as amphetamine, caffeine and lobeline also failed to show any specific antagonistic action on cortical inhibition. 9. In view of the possibility that GABA is the chemical agent mediating cortical inhibition, an attempt was made to find a selective antagonist of its depressant action on cortical neurones. None of the agents listed above, nor any other

  12. GABAergic synapses: their plasticity and role in sensory cortex

    PubMed Central

    Griffen, Trevor C.; Maffei, Arianna

    2014-01-01

    The mammalian neocortex is composed of a variety of cell types organized in a highly interconnected circuit. GABAergic neurons account for only about 20% of cortical neurons. However, they show widespread connectivity and a high degree of diversity in morphology, location, electrophysiological properties and gene expression. In addition, distinct populations of inhibitory neurons have different sensory response properties, capacities for plasticity and sensitivities to changes in sensory experience. In this review we summarize experimental evidence regarding the properties of GABAergic neurons in primary sensory cortex. We will discuss how distinct GABAergic neurons and different forms of GABAergic inhibitory plasticity may contribute to shaping sensory cortical circuit activity and function. PMID:24723851

  13. Cortical metabolic arrangement during olfactory processing: proposal for a 18F FDG PET/CT methodological approach.

    PubMed

    Micarelli, Alessandro; Pagani, Marco; Chiaravalloti, Agostino; Bruno, Ernesto; Pavone, Isabella; Candidi, Matteo; Danieli, Roberta; Schillaci, Orazio; Alessandrini, Marco

    2014-10-01

    The aim of this article is to investigate the cortical metabolic arrangements in olfactory processing by using F fluorodeoxyglucose (FDG) positron emission tomography/computed tomography.Twenty-six normosmic individuals (14 women and 12 men; mean age 46.7 ± 10 years) were exposed to a neutral olfactory condition (NC) and, after 1 month, to a pure olfactory condition (OC) in a relatively ecological environment, that is, outside the scanner. All the subjects were injected with 185-210 megabecquerel of F FDG during both stimulations. Statistical parametric mapping version 2 was used in order to assess differences between NC and OC.As a result, we found a significant higher glucose consumption during OC in the cuneus, lingual, and parahippocampal gyri, mainly in the left hemisphere. During NC, our results show a relative higher glucose metabolism in the left superior, inferior, middle, medial frontal, and orbital gyri as well as in the anterior cingulate cortex.The present investigation, performed with a widely available functional imaging clinical tool, may help to better understand the neural responses associated to olfactory processing in healthy individuals and in patients with olfactory disorders by acquiring data in an ecologic, noise-free, and resting condition in which possible cerebral activations related to unwanted attentional processes might be avoided. PMID:25340494

  14. Cortical Metabolic Arrangement During Olfactory Processing: Proposal for a 18F FDG PET/CT Methodological Approach

    PubMed Central

    Micarelli, Alessandro; Pagani, Marco; Chiaravalloti, Agostino; Bruno, Ernesto; Pavone, Isabella; Candidi, Matteo; Danieli, Roberta; Schillaci, Orazio; Alessandrini, Marco

    2014-01-01

    Abstract The aim of this article is to investigate the cortical metabolic arrangements in olfactory processing by using 18F fluorodeoxyglucose (FDG) positron emission tomography/computed tomography. Twenty-six normosmic individuals (14 women and 12 men; mean age 46.7 ± 10 years) were exposed to a neutral olfactory condition (NC) and, after 1 month, to a pure olfactory condition (OC) in a relatively ecological environment, that is, outside the scanner. All the subjects were injected with 185–210 megabecquerel of 18F FDG during both stimulations. Statistical parametric mapping version 2 was used in order to assess differences between NC and OC. As a result, we found a significant higher glucose consumption during OC in the cuneus, lingual, and parahippocampal gyri, mainly in the left hemisphere. During NC, our results show a relative higher glucose metabolism in the left superior, inferior, middle, medial frontal, and orbital gyri as well as in the anterior cingulate cortex. The present investigation, performed with a widely available functional imaging clinical tool, may help to better understand the neural responses associated to olfactory processing in healthy individuals and in patients with olfactory disorders by acquiring data in an ecologic, noise-free, and resting condition in which possible cerebral activations related to unwanted attentional processes might be avoided. PMID:25340494

  15. The Cortical Signature of Central Poststroke Pain: Gray Matter Decreases in Somatosensory, Insular, and Prefrontal Cortices.

    PubMed

    Krause, T; Asseyer, S; Taskin, B; Flöel, A; Witte, A V; Mueller, K; Fiebach, J B; Villringer, K; Villringer, A; Jungehulsing, G J

    2016-01-01

    It has been proposed that cortical structural plasticity plays a crucial role in the emergence and maintenance of chronic pain. Various distinct pain syndromes have accordingly been linked to specific patterns of decreases in regional gray matter volume (GMV). However, it is not known whether central poststroke pain (CPSP) is also associated with cortical structural plasticity. To determine this, we employed T1-weighted magnetic resonance imaging at 3 T and voxel-based morphometry in 45 patients suffering from chronic subcortical sensory stroke with (n = 23) and without CPSP (n = 22), and healthy matched controls (n = 31). CPSP patients showed decreases in GMV in comparison to healthy controls, involving secondary somatosensory cortex (S2), anterior as well as posterior insular cortex, ventrolateral prefrontal and orbitofrontal cortex, temporal cortex, and nucleus accumbens. Comparing CPSP patients to nonpain patients revealed a similar but more restricted pattern of atrophy comprising S2, ventrolateral prefrontal and temporal cortex. Additionally, GMV in the ventromedial prefrontal cortex negatively correlated to pain intensity ratings. This shows for the first time that CPSP is accompanied by a unique pattern of widespread structural plasticity, which involves the sensory-discriminative areas of insular/somatosensory cortex, but also expands into prefrontal cortex and ventral striatum, where emotional aspects of pain are processed. PMID:25129889

  16. Emotions in Word and Face Processing: Early and Late Cortical Responses

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Schacht, Annekathrin; Sommer, Werner

    2009-01-01

    Recent research suggests that emotion effects in word processing resemble those in other stimulus domains such as pictures or faces. The present study aims to provide more direct evidence for this notion by comparing emotion effects in word and face processing in a within-subject design. Event-related brain potentials (ERPs) were recorded as…

  17. Distributed Processing and Cortical Specialization for Speech and Environmental Sounds in Human Temporal Cortex

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Leech, Robert; Saygin, Ayse Pinar

    2011-01-01

    Using functional MRI, we investigated whether auditory processing of both speech and meaningful non-linguistic environmental sounds in superior and middle temporal cortex relies on a complex and spatially distributed neural system. We found that evidence for spatially distributed processing of speech and environmental sounds in a substantial…

  18. The Everyday Routines of Families of Children with Autism: Examining the Impact of Sensory Processing Difficulties on the Family

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Schaaf, Roseann C.; Toth-Cohen, Susan; Johnson, Stephanie L.; Outten, Gina; Benevides, Teal W.

    2011-01-01

    The purpose of this qualitative study was to explore the lived experience of how sensory-related behaviors of children with autism affected family routines. In-depth semi-structured interviews were conducted with four primary caregivers regarding the meaning and impact of their child's sensory-related behaviors on family routines that occurred…

  19. Subliminal presentation of other faces (but not own face) primes behavioral and evoked cortical processing of empathy for pain.

    PubMed

    Ibáñez, Agustín; Hurtado, Esteban; Lobos, Alejandro; Escobar, Josefina; Trujillo, Natalia; Baez, Sandra; Huepe, David; Manes, Facundo; Decety, Jean

    2011-06-29

    Current research on empathy for pain emphasizes the overlap in the neural response between the first-hand experience of pain and its perception in others. However, recent studies suggest that the perception of the pain of others may reflect the processing of a threat or negative arousal rather than an automatic pro-social response. It can thus be suggested that pain processing of other-related, but not self-related, information could imply danger rather than empathy, due to the possible threat represented in the expressions of others (especially if associated with pain stimuli). To test this hypothesis, two experiments considering subliminal stimuli were designed. In Experiment 1, neutral and semantic pain expressions previously primed with own or other faces were presented to participants. When other-face priming was used, only the detection of semantic pain expressions was facilitated. In Experiment 2, pictures with pain and neutral scenarios previously used in ERP and fMRI research were used in a categorization task. Those pictures were primed with own or other faces following the same procedure as in Experiment 1 while ERPs were recorded. Early (N1) and late (P3) cortical responses between pain and no-pain were modulated only in the other-face priming condition. These results support the threat value of pain hypothesis and suggest the necessity for the inclusion of own- versus other-related information in future empathy for pain research. PMID:21624566

  20. Distributed Cortical Phase Synchronization in the EEG Reveals Parallel Attention and Working Memory Processes Involved in the Attentional Blink.

    PubMed

    Glennon, Mark; Keane, Michael A; Elliott, Mark A; Sauseng, Paul

    2016-05-01

    Attentional blink (AB) describes a visuo-perceptual phenomenon in which the second of 2 targets within a rapid serial visual presentation stream is not detected. There are several cognitive models attempting to explain the fundamentals of this information processing bottleneck. Here, we used electroencephalographic recordings and the analysis of interregional phase synchronization of rhythmical brain activity to investigate the neural bases of the AB. By investigating the time course of interregional phase synchronization separately for trials in which participants failed to report the second target correctly (AB trials) and trials in which no AB occurred, and by clustering interregional connections based on their functional similarity, it was possible to define several distinct cortical networks. Analyzing these networks comprising phase synchronization-over a large spectrum of brain frequencies from theta to gamma activity-it was possible to identify neural correlates for cognitive subfunctions involved in the AB, such as the encoding of targets into working memory, tuning of attentional filters, and the recruitment of general cognitive resources. This parallel activation of functionally distinct neural processes substantiates the eligibility of several cognitive models on the AB. PMID:25750255

  1. Alterations in oropharyngeal sensory evoked potentials (PSEP) with Parkinson's disease.

    PubMed

    Pitts, Teresa; Hegland, Karen Wheeler; Sapienza, Christine M; Bolser, Donald C; Davenport, Paul W

    2016-07-15

    Movement of a food bolus from the oral cavity into the oropharynx activates pharyngeal sensory mechanoreceptors. Using electroencephalography, somatosensory cortical-evoked potentials resulting from oropharyngeal mechanical stimulation (PSEP) have been studied in young healthy individuals. However, limited information is known about changes in processing of oropharyngeal afferent signals with Parkinson's disease (PD). To determine if sensory changes occurred with a mechanical stimulus (air-puff) to the oropharynx, two stimuli (S1-first; S2-s) were delivered 500ms apart. Seven healthy older adults (HOA; 3 male and 4 female; 72.2±6.9 years of age), and thirteen persons diagnosed with idiopathic Parkinson's disease (PD; 11 male and 2 female; 67.2±8.9 years of age) participated. Results demonstrated PSEP P1, N1, and P2 component peaks were identified in all participants, and the N2 peak was present in 17/20 participants. Additionally, the PD participants had a decreased N2 latency and gated the P1, P2, and N2 responses (S2/S1 under 0.6). Compared to the HOAs, the PD participants had greater evidence of gating the P1 and N2 component peaks. These results suggest that persons with PD experience changes in sensory processing of mechanical stimulation of the pharynx to a greater degree than age-matched controls. In conclusion, the altered processing of sensory feedback from the pharynx may contribute to disordered swallow in patients with PD. PMID:27090350

  2. Contribution of different cortical areas in the temporal lobes to music processing.

    PubMed

    Liégeois-Chauvel, C; Peretz, I; Babaï, M; Laguitton, V; Chauvel, P

    1998-10-01

    Music processing ability was studied in 65 right-handed patients who had undergone unilateral temporal cortectomy for the relief of intractable epilepsy, and 24 matched normal controls. The ability to recognize changes in note intervals and to distinguish between different rhythms and metres was tested by presentation of sequences of simple musical phrases with variations in either pitch or temporal dimensions. The responses (right or wrong) enabled us to determine in which component of the music processing mechanism the patients had deficits and hence, knowing the positions of the surgical lesions, to identify their separate cerebral locations. The results showed that a right temporal cortectomy impaired the use of both contour and interval information in the discrimination of melodies and a left temporal cortectomy impaired only the use of interval information. Moreover, they underlined the importance of the superior temporal gyrus in melody processing. The excision of a part of the auditory areas (posterior part of the superior temporal gyrus) was found to be most detrimental for pitch and temporal variation processing. In the temporal dimension, we observed a dissociation between metre and rhythm and the critical involvement of the anterior part of the superior temporal gyrus in metric processing. This study highlights the relevance of dissociating musical abilities into their most significant cognitive components in order to identify their separate cerebral locations. PMID:9798742

  3. Division of labor between left and right human auditory cortices during the processing of intensity and duration.

    PubMed

    Angenstein, Nicole; Brechmann, André

    2013-12-01

    Intensity and duration are important parameters for the processing of speech and music. Neuroimaging results on the processing of these parameters in tasks involving the discrimination of stimuli based on these parameters are controversial. Depending on the experimental approach, varying hypotheses on the involvement of the left and right auditory cortices (ACs) have been put forward. The aim of the present functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) study was to find differences and commonalities in location and strength of brain activity during the processing of intensity and duration when the same stimuli have to be actively categorized according to these two parameters. For this we used a recently introduced method to determine lateralized processing in the AC with contralateral noise. Harmonic frequency modulated (FM) tone complexes were presented monaurally without and with contralateral noise. During categorization of the tones according to their intensity, contralateral noise increased activity mainly in the left AC, suggesting a special role for the left AC in this task. During categorization of tones according to their duration, contralateral noise increased activity in both the left and the right AC. This suggests that active categorization of FM tones according to their duration does not involve only the left AC as has been suggested, but also the right AC to a substantial degree. The area around Heschl's sulcus seems to be the most strongly involved during both intensity and duration categorization, albeit with different lateralization. Altogether the results of the present study support the view that the lateralized processing of the same stimuli in the human AC is strongly modulated by the given task (top-down effect). PMID:23831528

  4. Response reliability observed with voltage-sensitive dye imaging of cortical layer 2/3: the probability of activation hypothesis.

    PubMed

    Gollnick, Clare A; Millard, Daniel C; Ortiz, Alexander D; Bellamkonda, Ravi V; Stanley, Garrett B

    2016-06-01

    A central assertion in the study of neural processing is that our perception of the environment directly reflects the activity of our sensory neurons. This assertion reinforces the intuition that the strength of a sensory input directly modulates the amount of neural activity observed in response to that sensory feature: an increase in the strength of the input yields a graded increase in the amount of neural activity. However, cortical activity across a range of sensory pathways can be sparse, with individual neurons having remarkably low firing rates, often exhibiting suprathreshold activity on only a fraction of experimental trials. To compensate for this observed apparent unreliability, it is assumed that instead the local population of neurons, although not explicitly measured, does reliably represent the strength of the sensory input. This assumption, however, is largely untested. In this study, using wide-field voltage-sensitive dye (VSD) imaging of the somatosensory cortex in the anesthetized rat, we show that whisker deflection velocity, or stimulus strength, is not encoded by the magnitude of the population response at the level of cortex. Instead, modulation of whisker deflection velocity affects the likelihood of the cortical response, impacting the magnitude, rate of change, and spatial extent of the cortical response. An ideal observer analysis of the cortical response points to a probabilistic code based on repeated sampling across cortical columns and/or time, which we refer to as the probability of activation hypothesis. This hypothesis motivates a range of testable predictions for both future electrophysiological and future behavioral studies. PMID:26864758

  5. Positively Valenced Stimuli Facilitate Creative Novel Metaphoric Processes by Enhancing Medial Prefrontal Cortical Activation

    PubMed Central

    Subramaniam, Karuna; Beeman, Mark; Faust, Miriam; Mashal, Nira

    2013-01-01

    A metaphor is a figure of speech in which a subject is symbolic of another unrelated object. In the present study, we examined neural patterns associated with both novel unfamiliar and conventional familiar metaphoric processing, and how these patterns are modulated by affective valence. Prior to fMRI scanning, participants received a list of word pairs (novel unfamiliar metaphors as well as conventional familiar metaphors) and were asked to denote the valence (positive, negative, or neutral) of each word pair. During scanning, participants had to decide whether the word pairs formed meaningful or meaningless expressions. Results indicate that participants were faster and more accurate at deciding that positively valenced metaphors were meaningful compared to neutral metaphors. These behavioral findings were accompanied by increased activation in the medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC), posterior cingulate cortex (PCC), and the right inferior parietal lobe (RIPL). Specifically, positively valenced novel unfamiliar metaphors elicited activation in these brain regions in addition to the left superior temporal gyrus when compared to neutral novel metaphors. We also found that the mPFC and PCC mediated the processing of positively valenced metaphors when compared to negatively valenced metaphors. Positively valenced conventional metaphors, however, elicited different neural signatures when contrasted with either neutral or negatively valenced conventional metaphors. Together, our results indicate that positively valenced stimuli facilitate creative metaphoric processes (specifically novel metaphoric processes) by mediating attention and cognitive control processes required for the access, integration, and selection of semantic associations via modulation of the mPFC. The present study is important for the development of neural accounts of emotion-cognition interactions required for creativity, language, and successful social functioning in general. PMID:23637686

  6. Functional and topographic segregation of glomeruli revealed by local staining of antennal sensory neurons in the honeybee Apis mellifera.

    PubMed

    Nishino, Hiroshi; Nishikawa, Michiko; Mizunami, Makoto; Yokohari, Fumio

    2009-07-10

    In the primary olfactory center of animals, glomeruli are the relay stations where sensory neurons expressing cognate odorant receptors converge onto interneurons. In cockroaches, moths, and honeybees, sensory afferents from sensilla on the anterodorsal surface and the posteroventral surface of the flagellum form two nerves of almost equal thicknesses. In this study, double labeling of the two nerves, or proximal/distal regions of the nerves, with fluorescent dyes was used to investigate topographic organization of sensory afferents in the honeybee. The sensory neurons of ampullaceal sensilla responsive to CO2, coelocapitular sensilla responsive to hygrosensory, and thermosensory stimuli and coeloconic sensilla of unknown function were characterized with large somata and supplied thick axons exclusively to the ventral nerve. Correspondingly, all glomeruli innervated by sensory tract (T) 4 received thick axonal processes exclusively from the ventral nerve. Almost all T1-3 glomeruli received a similar number of sensory afferents from the two nerves. In the macroglomerular complexes of the drone, termination fields of afferents from the two nerves almost completely overlapped; this differs from moths and cockroaches, which show heterogeneous terminations in the glomerular complex. In T1-3 glomeruli, sensory neurons originating from more distal flagellar segments tended to terminate within the inner regions of the cortical layer. These results suggest that some degree of somatotopic organization of sensory afferents exist in T1-3 glomeruli, and part of T4 glomeruli serve for processing of hygro- and thermosensory signals. PMID:19412930

  7. La neuropsicologia dei processi motorici e sensoriali del linguaggio (The Neuro-psychology of the Motor and Sensory Processes of Language).

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Keller, Eric; Gopnik, Myrna

    1990-01-01

    Discusses the recent change in direction in neuropsychological and neurolinguistic research from a focus on pathological factors to one that combines pathological and normal factors, the major focus being the motor and sensory processes. An attempt is made to outline the future course of this field. (CFM)

  8. Sensory Modality Preferences: Measurement of Selected Psychological "Process" Variables and Their Validity; Implications for Aptitude-Treatment Interaction Research with Learning Disabled Children.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Mann, Lester; And Others

    In an attempt to clarify the phenomena of psychological "process" variables, as applied to children with learning disabilities, a study was made of sensory modality preferences in 64 kindergarten and 64 first grade children. Ss were given a battery of seven measures grouped under the following four headings: standardized test approach; controlled…

  9. Sensory Processing of Backward-Masking Signals in Children with Language-Learning Impairment as Assessed with the Auditory Brainstem Response.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Marler, Jeffrey A.; Champlin, Craig A.

    2005-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to examine the possible contribution of sensory mechanisms to an auditory processing deficit shown by some children with language-learning impairment (LLI). Auditory brainstem responses (ABRs) were measured from 2 groups of school-aged (8-10 years) children. One group consisted of 10 children with LLI, and the other…

  10. The Relationship between Sensory Processing Difficulties and Behaviour in Children Aged 5-9 Who Are at Risk of Developing Conduct Disorder

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Fox, Cara; Snow, Pamela C.; Holland, Kerry

    2014-01-01

    Behavioural problems in childhood are common, with significant and wide-ranging implications for individuals, families and the community. There is some evidence that sensory processing difficulties are associated with behavioural problems in children with disabilities such as autism spectrum disorders (ASDs) and attention-deficit/hyperactivity…

  11. Sensory Processing Abilities and Their Relation to Participation in Leisure Activities among Children with High-Functioning Autism Spectrum Disorder (HFASD)

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hochhauser, Michal; Engel-Yeger, Batya

    2010-01-01

    Children with autism may have atypical sensory processing abilities, which are known to impact child's performance and participation. However, lack of information exists regarding the expression of these abilities in specific groups on the spectrum, as children with high-functioning autism spectrum disorder (HFASD). This study aimed to…

  12. Contributions of Early Cortical Processing and Reading Ability to Functional Status in Individuals at Clinical High Risk for Psychosis

    PubMed Central

    Carrión, Ricardo E.; Cornblatt, Barbara A.; McLaughlin, Danielle; Chang, Jeremy; Auther, Andrea M.; Olsen, Ruth H.; Javitt, Daniel C.

    2015-01-01

    Background There is a growing recognition that individuals at clinical high risk need intervention for functional impairments, along with emerging psychosis, as the majority of clinical high risk (CHR) individuals show persistent deficits in social and role functioning regardless of transition to psychosis. Recent studies have demonstrated reduced reading ability as a potential cause of functional disability in schizophrenia, related to underlying deficits in generation of mismatch negativity (MMN). The present study extends these findings to subjects at CHR. Methods The sample consisted of 34 CHR individuals and 33 healthy comparisons subjects (CNTLs) from the Recognition and Prevention (RAP) Program at the Zucker Hillside Hospital in New York. At baseline, reading measures were collected, along with MMN to pitch, duration, and intensity deviants, and measures of neurocognition, and social and role (academic/work) functioning. Results CHR subjects showed impairments in reading ability, neurocognition, and MMN generation, relative to CNTLs. Lower-amplitude MMN responses were correlated with worse reading ability, slower processing speed, and poorer social and role functioning. However, when entered into a simultaneous regression, only reduced responses to deviance in sound duration and volume predicted poor social and role functioning, respectively. Conclusions Deficits in reading ability exist even prior to illness onset in schizophrenia and may represent a decline in performance from prior abilities. As in schizophrenia, deficits are related to impaired MMN generation, suggesting specific contributions of sensory-level impairment to neurocognitive processes related to social and role function. PMID:25728833

  13. The contribution of the putamen to sensory aspects of pain: insights from structural connectivity and brain lesions

    PubMed Central

    Starr, Christopher J.; Sawaki, Lumy; Wittenberg, George F.; Burdette, Jonathan H.; Oshiro, Yoshitetsu; Quevedo, Alexandre S.; McHaffie, John G.

    2011-01-01

    Cerebral cortical activity is heavily influenced by interactions with the basal ganglia. These interactions occur via cortico-basal ganglia-thalamo-cortical loops. The putamen is one of the major sites of cortical input into basal ganglia loops and is frequently activated during pain. This activity has been typically associated with the processing of pain-related motor responses. However, the potential contribution of putamen to the processing of sensory aspects of pain remains poorly characterized. In order to more directly determine if the putamen can contribute to sensory aspects of pain, nine individuals with lesions involving the putamen underwent both psychophysical and functional imaging assessment of perceived pain and pain-related brain activation. These individuals exhibited intact tactile thresholds, but reduced heat pain sensitivity and widespread reductions in pain-related cortical activity in comparison with 14 age-matched healthy subjects. Using magnetic resonance imaging to assess structural connectivity in healthy subjects, we show that portions of the putamen activated during pain are connected not only with cortical regions involved in sensory-motor processing, but also regions involved in attention, memory and affect. Such a framework may allow cognitive information to flow from these brain areas to the putamen where it may be used to influence how nociceptive information is processed. Taken together, these findings indicate that the putamen and the basal ganglia may contribute importantly to the shaping of an individual subjective sensory experience by utilizing internal cognitive information to influence activity of large areas of the cerebral cortex. PMID:21616963

  14. Factors in Sensory Processing of Prosody in Schizotypal Personality Disorder: An fMRI Experiment

    PubMed Central

    Dickey, Chandlee C.; Morocz, Istvan A.; Minney, Daniel; Niznikiewicz, Margaret A.; Voglmaier, Martina M.; Panych, Lawrence P.; Khan, Usman; Zacks, Rayna; Terry, Douglas P.; Shenton, Martha E.; McCarley, Robert W.

    2010-01-01

    Introduction Persons diagnosed with schizophrenia demonstrate deficits in prosody recognition. To examine prosody along the schizophrenia spectrum, antipsychotic-naïve schizotypal personality disorder (SPD) subjects and healthy control subjects were compared. It was hypothesized that SPD subjects would perform more poorly; with cognitive and demographic factors contributing to the poor performance. The superior temporal gyrus (STG) was selected as the region-of-interest (ROI) given its known abnormalities in SPD and its important role in the processing of prosody. Methods SPD and healthy comparison (HC) subjects were matched on age, IQ, and parental social-economic status (PSES). Cognitive measures included the Speech Sound Perception Test (SSPT) to examine phonological processing (SPD= 68, HC = 74) and the Verbal Fluency task to examine executive functioning (SPD = 129, HC = 138). The main experiment was a novel fMRI task of prosody identification using semantically neutral sentences spoken with emotional prosody (SPD = 16, HC = 13). Finally, volumetric measurement of the superior temporal sulcus (STS), a key region for processing prosody, and partially overlapping with the STG, was performed (SPD = 30, HC = 30). Results Phonological processing and executive functioning were both impaired in SPD subjects compared with HC subjects. Contrary to the prediction, SPD subjects, as a group, were similar to HC subjects in terms of correctly indentifying the emotion conveyed and reaction time. Within the SPD group, prosody identification accuracy was influenced by executive functioning, IQ and perhaps PSES, relationships not found with HC subjects. Phonological perception aided prosody identification in both diagnostic groups. As expected, both groups activated the STG while performing the prosody identification task. However, SPD subjects may have been less “efficient” in their recruitment of STG neurons. Finally, SPD subjects demonstrated a trend toward smaller STS

  15. Monte Carlo point process estimation of electromyographic envelopes from motor cortical spikes for brain-machine interfaces

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liao, Yuxi; She, Xiwei; Wang, Yiwen; Zhang, Shaomin; Zhang, Qiaosheng; Zheng, Xiaoxiang; Principe, Jose C.

    2015-12-01

    Objective. Representation of movement in the motor cortex (M1) has been widely studied in brain-machine interfaces (BMIs). The electromyogram (EMG) has greater bandwidth than the conventional kinematic variables (such as position, velocity), and is functionally related to the discharge of cortical neurons. As the stochastic information of EMG is derived from the explicit spike time structure, point process (PP) methods will be a good solution for decoding EMG directly from neural spike trains. Previous studies usually assume linear or exponential tuning curves between neural firing and EMG, which may not be true. Approach. In our analysis, we estimate the tuning curves in a data-driven way and find both the traditional functional-excitatory and functional-inhibitory neurons, which are widely found across a rat’s motor cortex. To accurately decode EMG envelopes from M1 neural spike trains, the Monte Carlo point process (MCPP) method is implemented based on such nonlinear tuning properties. Main results. Better reconstruction of EMG signals is shown on baseline and extreme high peaks, as our method can better preserve the nonlinearity of the neural tuning during decoding. The MCPP improves the prediction accuracy (the normalized mean squared error) 57% and 66% on average compared with the adaptive point process filter using linear and exponential tuning curves respectively, for all 112 data segments across six rats. Compared to a Wiener filter using spike rates with an optimal window size of 50 ms, MCPP decoding EMG from a point process improves the normalized mean square error (NMSE) by 59% on average. Significance. These results suggest that neural tuning is constantly changing during task execution and therefore, the use of spike timing methodologies and estimation of appropriate tuning curves needs to be undertaken for better EMG decoding in motor BMIs.

  16. Spatial Language Processing in the Blind: Evidence for a Supramodal Representation and Cortical Reorganization

    PubMed Central

    Struiksma, Marijn E.; Noordzij, Matthijs L.; Neggers, Sebastiaan F. W.; Bosker, Wendy M.; Postma, Albert

    2011-01-01

    Neuropsychological and imaging studies have shown that the left supramarginal gyrus (SMG) is specifically involved in processing spatial terms (e.g. above, left of), which locate places and objects in the world. The current fMRI study focused on the nature and specificity of representing spatial language in the left SMG by combining behavioral and neuronal activation data in blind and sighted individuals. Data from the blind provide an elegant way to test the supramodal representation hypothesis, i.e. abstract codes representing spatial relations yielding no activation differences between blind and sighted. Indeed, the left SMG was activated during spatial language processing in both blind and sighted individuals implying a supramodal representation of spatial and other dimensional relations which does not require visual experience to develop. However, in the absence of vision functional reorganization of the visual cortex is known to take place. An important consideration with respect to our finding is the amount of functional reorganization during language processing in our blind participants. Therefore, the participants also performed a verb generation task. We observed that only in the blind occipital areas were activated during covert language generation. Additionally, in the first task there was functional reorganization observed for processing language with a high linguistic load. As the visual cortex was not specifically active for spatial contents in the first task, and no reorganization was observed in the SMG, the latter finding further supports the notion that the left SMG is the main node for a supramodal representation of verbal spatial relations. PMID:21935391

  17. The spatiotemporal profile of cortical processing leading up to visual perception.

    PubMed

    Fahrenfort, J J; Scholte, H S; Lamme, V A F

    2008-01-01

    Much controversy exists around the locus of conscious visual perception in human cortex. Some authors have proposed that its neural correlates correspond with recurrent processing within visual cortex, whereas others have argued they are located in a frontoparietal network. The present experiment aims to bring together these competing viewpoints. We recorded EEG from human subjects that were engaged in detecting masked visual targets. From this, we obtained a spatiotemporal profile of neural activity selectively related to the processing of the targets, which we correlated with the subjects' ability to detect those targets. This made it possible to distinguish between those stages of visual processing that correlate with human perception and those that do not. The results show that target induced extra-striate feedforward activity peaking at 121 ms does not correlate with perception, whereas more posterior recurrent activity peaking at 160 ms does. Several subsequent stages show an alternating pattern of frontoparietal and occipital activity, all of which correlate highly with perception. This shows that perception emerges early on, but only after an initial feedforward volley, and suggests that multiple reentrant loops are involved in propagating this signal to frontoparietal areas. PMID:18318615

  18. Low-Frequency Cortical Entrainment to Speech Reflects Phoneme-Level Processing.

    PubMed

    Di Liberto, Giovanni M; O'Sullivan, James A; Lalor, Edmund C

    2015-10-01

    The human ability to understand speech is underpinned by a hierarchical auditory system whose successive stages process increasingly complex attributes of the acoustic input. It has been suggested that to produce categorical speech perception, this system must elicit consistent neural responses to speech tokens (e.g., phonemes) despite variations in their acoustics. Here, using electroencephalography (EEG), we provide evidence for this categorical phoneme-level speech processing by showing that the relationship between continuous speech and neural activity is best described when that speech is represented using both low-level spectrotemporal information and categorical labeling of phonetic features. Furthermore, the mapping between phonemes and EEG becomes more discriminative for phonetic features at longer latencies, in line with what one might expect from a hierarchical system. Importantly, these effects are not seen for time-reversed speech. These findings may form the basis for future research on natural language processing in specific cohorts of interest and for broader insights into how brains transform acoustic input into meaning. PMID:26412129

  19. Linguistic category structure influences early auditory processing: Converging evidence from mismatch responses and cortical oscillations.

    PubMed

    Scharinger, Mathias; Monahan, Philip J; Idsardi, William J

    2016-03-01

    While previous research has established that language-specific knowledge influences early auditory processing, it is still controversial as to what aspects of speech sound representations determine early speech perception. Here, we propose that early processing primarily depends on information propagated top-down from abstractly represented speech sound categories. In particular, we assume that mid-vowels (as in 'bet') exert less top-down effects than the high-vowels (as in 'bit') because of their less specific (default) tongue height position as compared to either high- or low-vowels (as in 'bat'). We tested this assumption in a magnetoencephalography (MEG) study where we contrasted mid- and high-vowels, as well as the low- and high-vowels in a passive oddball paradigm. Overall, significant differences between deviants and standards indexed reliable mismatch negativity (MMN) responses between 200 and 300ms post-stimulus onset. MMN amplitudes differed in the mid/high-vowel contrasts and were significantly reduced when a mid-vowel standard was followed by a high-vowel deviant, extending previous findings. Furthermore, mid-vowel standards showed reduced oscillatory power in the pre-stimulus beta-frequency band (18-26Hz), compared to high-vowel standards. We take this as converging evidence for linguistic category structure to exert top-down influences on auditory processing. The findings are interpreted within the linguistic model of underspecification and the neuropsychological predictive coding framework. PMID:26780574

  20. Modelling relations between sensory processing, speech perception, orthographic and phonological ability, and literacy achievement.

    PubMed

    Boets, Bart; Wouters, Jan; van Wieringen, Astrid; De Smedt, Bert; Ghesquière, Pol

    2008-07-01

    The general magnocellular theory postulates that dyslexia is the consequence of a multimodal deficit in the processing of transient and dynamic stimuli. In the auditory modality, this deficit has been hypothesized to interfere with accurate speech perception, and subsequently disrupt the development of phonological and later reading and spelling skills. In the visual modality, an analogous problem might interfere with literacy development by affecting orthographic skills. In this prospective longitudinal study, we tested dynamic auditory and visual processing, speech-in-noise perception, phonological ability and orthographic ability in 62 five-year-old preschool children. Predictive relations towards first grade reading and spelling measures were explored and the validity of the global magnocellular model was evaluated using causal path analysis. In particular, we demonstrated that dynamic auditory processing was related to speech perception, which itself was related to phonological awareness. Similarly, dynamic visual processing was related to orthographic ability. Subsequently, phonological awareness, orthographic ability and verbal short-term memory were unique predictors of reading and spelling development. PMID:18207564

  1. Modelling Relations between Sensory Processing, Speech Perception, Orthographic and Phonological Ability, and Literacy Achievement

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Boets, Bart; Wouters, Jan; van Wieringen, Astrid; De Smedt, Bert; Ghesquiere, Pol

    2008-01-01

    The general magnocellular theory postulates that dyslexia is the consequence of a multimodal deficit in the processing of transient and dynamic stimuli. In the auditory modality, this deficit has been hypothesized to interfere with accurate speech perception, and subsequently disrupt the development of phonological and later reading and spelling…

  2. Cortical dynamics revisited.

    PubMed

    Singer, Wolf

    2013-12-01

    Recent discoveries on the organisation of the cortical connectome together with novel data on the dynamics of neuronal interactions require an extension of classical concepts on information processing in the cerebral cortex. These new insights justify considering the brain as a complex, self-organised system with nonlinear dynamics in which principles of distributed, parallel processing coexist with serial operations within highly interconnected networks. The observed dynamics suggest that cortical networks are capable of providing an extremely high-dimensional state space in which a large amount of evolutionary and ontogenetically acquired information can coexist and be accessible to rapid parallel search. PMID:24139950

  3. Microcracking damage and the fracture process in relation to strain rate in human cortical bone tensile failure.

    PubMed

    Zioupos, Peter; Hansen, Ulrich; Currey, John D

    2008-10-20

    It is difficult to define the 'physiological' mechanical properties of bone. Traumatic failures in-vivo are more likely to be orders of magnitude faster than the quasistatic tests usually employed in-vitro. We have reported recently [Hansen, U., Zioupos, P., Simpson, R., Currey, J.D., Hynd, D., 2008. The effect of strain rate on the mechanical properties of human cortical bone. Journal of Biomechanical Engineering/Transactions of the ASME 130, 011011-1-8] results from tests on specimens of human femoral cortical bone loaded in tension at strain rates (epsilon ) ranging from low (0.08s(-1)) to high (18s(-1)). Across this strain rate range the modulus of elasticity generally increased, stress at yield and failure and strain at failure decreased for rates higher than 1s(-1), while strain at yield was invariant for most strain rates and only decreased at rates higher than 10s(-1). The results showed that strain rate has a stronger effect on post-yield deformation than on initiation of macroscopic yielding. In general, specimens loaded at high strain rates were brittle, while those loaded at low strain rates were much tougher. Here, a post-test examination of the microcracking damage reveals that microcracking was inversely related to the strain rate. Specimens loaded at low strain rates showed considerable post-yield strain and also much more microcracking. Partial correlation and regression analysis suggested that the development of post-yield strain was a function of the amount of microcracking incurred (the cause), rather than being a direct result of the strain rate (the excitation). Presumably low strain rates allow time for microcracking to develop, which increases the compliance of the specimen, making them tougher. This behaviour confirms a more general rule that the degree to which bone is brittle or tough depends on the amount of microcracking damage it is able to sustain. More importantly, the key to bone toughness is its ability to avoid a ductile

  4. Cortical activity patterns predict speech discrimination ability

    PubMed Central

    Engineer, Crystal T; Perez, Claudia A; Chen, YeTing H; Carraway, Ryan S; Reed, Amanda C; Shetake, Jai A; Jakkamsetti, Vikram; Chang, Kevin Q; Kilgard, Michael P

    2010-01-01

    Neural activity in the cerebral cortex can explain many aspects of sensory perception. Extensive psychophysical and neurophysiological studies of visual motion and vibrotactile processing show that the firing rate of cortical neurons averaged across 50–500 ms is well correlated with discrimination ability. In this study, we tested the hypothesis that primary auditory cortex (A1) neurons use temporal precision on the order of 1–10 ms to represent speech sounds shifted into the rat hearing range. Neural discrimination was highly correlated with behavioral performance on 11 consonant-discrimination tasks when spike timing was preserved and was not correlated when spike timing was eliminated. This result suggests that spike timing contributes to the auditory cortex representation of consonant sounds. PMID:18425123

  5. Sequences of cortical activation for tactile pattern discrimination using magnetoencephalography.

    PubMed

    Reed, Catherine L; Hagler, Donald J; Marinkovic, Ksenija; Dale, Anders; Halgren, Eric

    2009-07-01

    To observe sequential stages in tactile pattern discrimination and their modification with and without attention, we used whole-head anatomically constrained magnetoencephalography to spatiotemporally map brain responses. Eight, normal, right-handed participants discriminated between two patterns presented on the palm. Latencies of neural activity were determined from stimulus contact with the palm. Early cortical activation moved from sensorimotor cortex (SM1) to secondary somatosensory cortex (SII), Broca's area (BA), and superior parietal cortex by 65 ms. It continued bilaterally to temporal and frontal poles by 290 ms. Subtraction of nonattended from attended conditions removed primarily the early contralateral sensory components. There was some indication of a preferred order of sensory processing that may express and optimize hemispheric computational specializations. Results indicate similar functional organizations for tactile and visual pattern recognition. PMID:19525880

  6. Behavioral/Systems/Cognitive Cortical Processing of Dynamic Sound Envelope Transitions

    PubMed Central

    Zhou, Yi; Wang, Xiaoqin

    2012-01-01

    Slow envelope fluctuations in the range of 2-20Hz provide important segmental cues for processing communication sounds. For a successful segmentation, a neural processor must capture envelope features associated with the rise and fall of signal energy, a process that is often challenged by the interference of background noise. This study investigated the neural representations of slowly varying envelopes in quiet and in background noise in the primary auditory cortex (A1) of awake marmoset monkeys. We characterized envelope features based on the local average and rate of change of sound level in envelope waveforms and identified envelope features to which neurons were selective by reverse correlation. Our results showed that envelope feature selectivity of A1 neurons was correlated with the degree of non-monotonicity in their static rate-level functions. Non-monotonic neurons exhibited greater feature selectivity than monotonic neurons in quiet and in background noise. The diverse envelope feature selectivity decreased spike-timing correlation among A1 neurons in response to the same envelope waveforms. As a result, the variability, but not the average, of the ensemble responses of A1 neurons represented more faithfully the dynamic transitions in low-frequency sound envelopes both in quiet and in background noise. PMID:21148013

  7. Differential contributions of dorsolateral and frontopolar cortices to working memory processes in the primate

    PubMed Central

    Boschin, Erica A.; Buckley, Mark J.

    2015-01-01

    The ability to maintain and manipulate information across temporal delays is a fundamental requirement to bridge the gap between perception and action. In the case of higher-order behavior, the maintenance of rules and strategies is particularly helpful in bridging this gap. The prefrontal cortex (PFC) has long been considered critical for such processes, and research has focused on different subdivisions of PFC to gain an insight into their diverse contributions to these mechanisms. Substantial evidence indicates that dorsolateral PFC (dlPFC) is an important structure for maintaining information across delays, with cells actively firing across delays and lesions to this region causing deficits in tasks involving delayed responses and maintenance of rules online. Frontopolar cortex (FP), on the other hand, appears to show the opposite pattern of results, with cells not firing across delays and lesions to this region not affecting the same rule-based, delayed response tasks that are impaired following dlPFC lesions. The body of evidence therefore suggests that dlPFC and FP’s contributions to working memory differ. In this article, we will provide a perspective on how these regions might implement distinct but complementary and interactive functions that contribute to more general temporally-extended processes and support flexible, dynamic behavior. PMID:26578901

  8. The anterior insular and anterior cingulate cortices in emotional processing for self-face recognition.

    PubMed

    Morita, Tomoyo; Tanabe, Hiroki C; Sasaki, Akihiro T; Shimada, Koji; Kakigi, Ryusuke; Sadato, Norihiro

    2014-05-01

    Individuals can experience embarrassment when exposed to self-feedback images, depending on the extent of the divergence from the internal representation of the standard self. Our previous work implicated the anterior insular cortex (AI) and the anterior cingulate cortex (ACC) in the processing of embarrassment; however, their exact functional contributions have remained uncertain. Here, we explored the effects of being observed by others while viewing self-face images on the extent of embarrassment, and the activation and connectivity patterns in the AI and ACC. We conducted functional magnetic resonance imaging hyperscanning in pairs of healthy participants using an interaction system that allowed an individual to be observed by a partner in real time. Being observed increased the extent of embarrassment reported when viewing self-face images; a corresponding increase in self-related activity in the right AI suggested that this region played a direct role in the subjective experience. Being observed also increased the functional connectivity between the caudal ACC and prefrontal regions, which are involved in processing the reflective self. The ACC might therefore serve as a hub, integrating information about the reflective self that is used in evaluating perceptual self-face images. PMID:23377900

  9. The anterior insular and anterior cingulate cortices in emotional processing for self-face recognition

    PubMed Central

    Morita, Tomoyo; Tanabe, Hiroki C.; Sasaki, Akihiro T.; Shimada, Koji; Kakigi, Ryusuke

    2014-01-01

    Individuals can experience embarrassment when exposed to self-feedback images, depending on the extent of the divergence from the internal representation of the standard self. Our previous work implicated the anterior insular cortex (AI) and the anterior cingulate cortex (ACC) in the processing of embarrassment; however, their exact functional contributions have remained uncertain. Here, we explored the effects of being observed by others while viewing self-face images on the extent of embarrassment, and the activation and connectivity patterns in the AI and ACC. We conducted functional magnetic resonance imaging hyperscanning in pairs of healthy participants using an interaction system that allowed an individual to be observed by a partner in real time. Being observed increased the extent of embarrassment reported when viewing self-face images; a corresponding increase in self-related activity in the right AI suggested that this region played a direct role in the subjective experience. Being observed also increased the functional connectivity between the caudal ACC and prefrontal regions, which are involved in processing the reflective self. The ACC might therefore serve as a hub, integrating information about the reflective self that is used in evaluating perceptual self-face images. PMID:23377900

  10. Optimization of process parameters for drilled hole quality characteristics during cortical bone drilling using Taguchi method.

    PubMed

    Singh, Gurmeet; Jain, Vivek; Gupta, Dheeraj; Ghai, Aman

    2016-09-01

    Orthopaedic surgery involves drilling of bones to get them fixed at their original position. The drilling process used in orthopaedic surgery is most likely to the mechanical drilling process and there is all likelihood that it may harm the already damaged bone, the surrounding bone tissue and nerves, and the peril is not limited at that. It is very much feared that the recovery of that part may be impeded so that it may not be able to sustain life long. To achieve sustainable orthopaedic surgery, a surgeon must try to control the drilling damage at the time of bone drilling. The area around the holes decides the life of bone joint and so, the contiguous area of drilled hole must be intact and retain its properties even after drilling. This study mainly focuses on optimization of drilling parameters like rotational speed, feed rate and the type of tool at three levels each used by Taguchi optimization for surface roughness and material removal rate. The confirmation experiments were also carried out and results found with the confidence interval. Scanning electrode microscopy (SEM) images assisted in getting the micro level information of bone damage. PMID:27254280

  11. Cortical motion deafness.

    PubMed

    Ducommun, Christine Y; Michel, Christoph M; Clarke, Stephanie; Adriani, Michela; Seeck, Margitta; Landis, Theodor; Blanke, Olaf

    2004-09-16

    The extent to which the auditory system, like the visual system, processes spatial stimulus characteristics such as location and motion in separate specialized neuronal modules or in one homogeneously distributed network is unresolved. Here we present a patient with a selective deficit for the perception and discrimination of auditory motion following resection of the right anterior temporal lobe and the right posterior superior temporal gyrus (STG). Analysis of stimulus identity and location within the auditory scene remained intact. In addition, intracranial auditory evoked potentials, recorded preoperatively, revealed motion-specific responses selectively over the resected right posterior STG, and electrical cortical stimulation of this region was experienced by the patient as incoming moving sounds. Collectively, these data present a patient with cortical motion deafness, providing evidence that cortical processing of auditory motion is performed in a specialized module within the posterior STG. PMID:15363389

  12. Degradation of edible oil during food processing by ultrasound: electron paramagnetic resonance, physicochemical, and sensory appreciation.

    PubMed

    Pingret, Daniella; Durand, Grégory; Fabiano-Tixier, Anne-Sylvie; Rockenbauer, Antal; Ginies, Christian; Chemat, Farid

    2012-08-01

    During ultrasound processing of lipid-containing food, some off-flavors can be detected, which can incite depreciation by consumers. The impacts of ultrasound treatment on sunflower oil using two different ultrasound horns (titanium and pyrex) were evaluated. An electron paramagnetic resonance study was performed to identify and quantify the formed radicals, along with the assessment of classical physicochemical parameters such as peroxide value, acid value, anisidine value, conjugated dienes, polar compounds, water content, polymer quantification, fatty acid composition, and volatiles profile. The study shows an increase of formed radicals in sonicated oils, as well as the modification of physicochemical parameters evidencing an oxidation of treated oils. PMID:22804736

  13. Substitution of natural sensory input by artificial neurostimulation of an amputated trigeminal nerve does not prevent the degeneration of basal forebrain cholinergic circuits projecting to the somatosensory cortex

    PubMed Central

    Herrera-Rincon, Celia; Panetsos, Fivos

    2014-01-01

    Peripheral deafferentation downregulates acetylcholine (ACh) synthesis in sensory cortices. However, the responsible neural circuits and processes are not known. We irreversibly transected the rat infraorbital nerve and implanted neuroprosthetic microdevices for proximal stump stimulation, and assessed cytochrome-oxidase and choline- acetyl-transferase (ChAT) in somatosensory, auditory and visual cortices; estimated the number and density of ACh-neurons in the magnocellular basal nucleus (MBN); and localized down-regulated ACh-neurons in basal forebrain using retrograde labeling from deafferented cortices. Here we show that nerve transection, causes down regulation of MBN cholinergic neurons. Stimulation of the cut nerve reverses the metabolic decline but does not affect the decrease in cholinergic fibers in cortex or cholinergic neurons in basal forebrain. Artifical stimulation of the nerve also has no affect of ACh-innervation of other cortices. Cortical ChAT depletion is due to loss of corticopetal MBN ChAT-expressing neurons. MBN ChAT downregulation is not due to a decrease of afferent activity or to a failure of trophic support. Basalocortical ACh circuits are sensory specific, ACh is provided to each sensory cortex “on demand” by dedicated circuits. Our data support the existence of a modality-specific cortex-MBN-cortex circuit for cognitive information processing. PMID:25452715

  14. Attention modulates cortical processing of pitch feedback errors in voice control.

    PubMed

    Hu, Huijing; Liu, Ying; Guo, Zhiqiang; Li, Weifeng; Liu, Peng; Chen, Shaozhen; Liu, Hanjun

    2015-01-01

    Considerable evidence has shown that unexpected alterations in auditory feedback elicit fast compensatory adjustments in vocal production. Although generally thought to be involuntary in nature, whether these adjustments can be influenced by attention remains unknown. The present event-related potential (ERP) study aimed to examine whether neurobehavioral processing of auditory-vocal integration can be affected by attention. While sustaining a vowel phonation and hearing pitch-shifted feedback, participants were required to either ignore the pitch perturbations, or attend to them with low (counting the number of perturbations) or high attentional load (counting the type of perturbations). Behavioral results revealed no systematic change of vocal response to pitch perturbations irrespective of whether they were attended or not. At the level of cortex, there was an enhancement of P2 response to attended pitch perturbations in the low-load condition as compared to when they were ignored. In the high-load condition, however, P2 response did not differ from that in the ignored condition. These findings provide the first neurophysiological evidence that auditory-motor integration in voice control can be modulated as a function of attention at the level of cortex. Furthermore, this modulatory effect does not lead to a general enhancement but is subject to attentional load. PMID:25589447

  15. Attention Modulates Cortical Processing of Pitch Feedback Errors in Voice Control

    PubMed Central

    Hu, Huijing; Liu, Ying; Guo, Zhiqiang; Li, Weifeng; Liu, Peng; Chen, Shaozhen; Liu, Hanjun

    2015-01-01

    Considerable evidence has shown that unexpected alterations in auditory feedback elicit fast compensatory adjustments in vocal production. Although generally thought to be involuntary in nature, whether these adjustments can be influenced by attention remains unknown. The present event-related potential (ERP) study aimed to examine whether neurobehavioral processing of auditory-vocal integration can be affected by attention. While sustaining a vowel phonation and hearing pitch-shifted feedback, participants were required to either ignore the pitch perturbations, or attend to them with low (counting the number of perturbations) or high attentional load (counting the type of perturbations). Behavioral results revealed no systematic change of vocal response to pitch perturbations irrespective of whether they were attended or not. At the level of cortex, there was an enhancement of P2 response to attended pitch perturbations in the low-load condition as compared to when they were ignored. In the high-load condition, however, P2 response did not differ from that in the ignored condition. These findings provide the first neurophysiological evidence that auditory-motor integration in voice control can be modulated as a function of attention at the level of cortex. Furthermore, this modulatory effect does not lead to a general enhancement but is subject to attentional load. PMID:25589447

  16. Role of medial cortical networks for anticipatory processing in obsessive-compulsive disorder.

    PubMed

    Ciesielski, Kristina T; Rauch, Scott L; Ahlfors, Seppo P; Vangel, Mark E; Wilhelm, Sabine; Rosen, Bruce R; Hämäläinen, Matti S

    2012-09-01

    Recurrent anticipation of ominous events is central to obsessions, the core symptom of obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), yet the neural basis of intrinsic anticipatory processing in OCD is unknown. We studied nonmedicated adults with OCD and case matched healthy controls in a visual-spatial working memory task with distractor. Magnetoencephalography was used to examine the medial cortex activity during anticipation of to-be-inhibited distractors and to-be-facilitated retrieval stimuli. In OCD anticipatory activation to distractors was abnormally reduced within the posterior cingulate and fusiform gyrus compared to prominent activation in controls. Conversely, OCD subjects displayed significantly increased activation to retrieval stimuli within the anterior cingulate and supplementary motor cortex. This previously unreported discordant pattern of medial anticipatory activation in OCD was accompanied by normal performance accuracy. While increased anterior cortex activation in OCD is commonly viewed as failure of inhibition, the current pattern of data implicates the operation of an anterior compensatory mechanism amending the posterior medial self-regulatory networks disrupted in OCD. PMID:21882299

  17. Thermal nociceptive threshold testing detects altered sensory processing in broiler chickens with spontaneous lameness.

    PubMed

    Hothersall, Becky; Caplen, Gina; Parker, Richard M A; Nicol, Christine J; Waterman-Pearson, Avril E; Weeks, Claire A; Murrell, Joanna C

    2014-01-01

    Lameness is common in commercially reared broiler chickens but relationships between lameness and pain (and thus bird welfare) have proved complex, partly because lameness is often partially confounded with factors such as bodyweight, sex and pathology. Thermal nociceptive threshold (TNT) testing explores the neural processing of noxious stimuli, and so can contribute to our understanding of pain. Using an acute model of experimentally induced articular pain, we recently demonstrated that TNT was reduced in lame broiler chickens, and was subsequently attenuated by administration of Non-Steroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drugs (NSAIDs). This study extended these findings to a large sample of commercial broilers. It examined factors affecting thermal threshold (Part 1) and the effect of an NSAID drug (meloxicam, 5 mg/kg) and of an opioid (butorphanol; 4 mg/kg) (Part 2). Spontaneously lame and matched non-lame birds (n=167) from commercial farms were exposed to ramped thermal stimulations via a probe attached to the lateral aspect of the tarsometatarsus. Baseline skin temperature and temperature at which a behavioural avoidance response occurred (threshold) were recorded. In Part 1 bird characteristics influencing threshold were modelled; In Part 2 the effect of subcutaneous administration of meloxicam or butorphanol was investigated. Unexpectedly, after accounting for other influences, lameness increased threshold significantly (Part 1). In Part 2, meloxicam affected threshold differentially: it increased further in lame birds and decreased in non-lame birds. No effect of butorphanol was detected. Baseline skin temperature was also consistently a significant predictor of threshold. Overall, lameness significantly influenced threshold after other bird characteristics were taken into account. This, and a differential effect of meloxicam on lame birds, suggests that nociceptive processing may be altered in lame birds, though mechanisms for this require further investigation

  18. Irradiating of Bulk Soybeans: Influence on Their Functional and Sensory Properties for Soyfood Processing

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Chia, Chiew-Ling; Wilson, Lester A.; Boylston, Terri; Perchonok, Michele; French, Stephen

    2006-01-01

    Soybeans were chosen for lunar and planetary missions, where soybeans will be supplied in bulk or grown locally, due to their nutritive value and ability to produce oil and protein for further food applications. However, soybeans must be processed into foods prior to consumption. Radiation that soybeans would be exposed to during bulk storage prior to and during a Mars mission may influence their germination and functional properties. The influence of radiation includes the affect of surface pasteurization to ensure the astronauts safety from food-borne illnesses (HACCP, CCP), and the affect of the amount of radiation the soybeans receive during a Mars mission. Decreases in the amount of natural antioxidants free radical formation, and oxidation-induced changes in the soybean will influence the nutritional value, texture, color, and aroma of soyfoods. The objective of this study was to determine the influence of pasteurization and sterilization surface radiation on whole soybeans using gamma and electron beam radiation. The influence of 0, 1, 5, 10, and 30kGy on microbial load, germination rate, ease of processing, and quality of soymilk and tofu were determined. Surface radiation of whole dry soybeans using electron beam or gamma rays from 1-30kGy did provide microbial safety for the astronauts. However, the lower dose levels had surviving yeasts and molds. These doses caused oxidative changes that resulted in soymilk and tofu with rancid aromas. GC-MS of the aroma compounds using SPME Headspace confirmed the presence of lipid oxidation compounds. Soybean germination ability was reduced as radiation dosage increased. While lower doses may reduce these problems, the ability to insure microbial safety of bulk soybeans will be lost. Counter measures could include vacuum packaging, nitrogen flushing, added antioxidants, and radiating under freezing conditions. Doses below 1kGy need to be investigated further to determine the influence of the radiation encountered

  19. Topographic reorganization in the striate cortex of the adult cat and monkey is cortically mediated.

    PubMed

    Darian-Smith, C; Gilbert, C D

    1995-03-01

    In primary sensory and motor cortex of adult animals, alteration of input from the periphery leads to changes in cortical topography. These changes can be attributed to processes that are intrinsic to the cortex, or can be inherited from alterations occurring at stages of sensory processing that are antecedent to the primary sensory cortical areas. In the visual system, focal binocular retinal lesions initially silence an area of cortex that represents the region of retina destroyed, but over a period of months this area recovers visually driven activity. The retinotopic map in the recovered area is altered, shifting its representation to the portion of retina immediately surrounding the lesion. This effectively shrinks the representation of the lesioned area of retina, and expands the representation of the lesion surround. To determine the loci along the visual pathway at which the reorganization takes place, we compared the course of topographic alterations in the primary visual cortex and dorsal lateral geniculate nucleus (LGN) of cats and monkeys. At a time when the cortical reorganization is complete, the silent area of LGN persists, indicating that changes in cortical topography are due to alterations that are intrinsic to the cortex. To explore the participation of thalamocortical afferents in the reorganization, we injected a series of retrogradely transported fluorescent tracers into reorganized and surrounding cortex of each animal. Our results show that the thalamocortical arbors do not extend beyond their normal lateral territory and that this physical dimension is insufficient to account for the reorganization. We suggest that the long-range intrinsic horizontal connections are a likely source of visual input into the reorganized cortical area. PMID:7891124

  20. A preliminary study about the influence of high hydrostatic pressure processing in parallel with oak chip maceration on the physicochemical and sensory properties of a young red wine.

    PubMed

    Tao, Yang; Sun, Da-Wen; Górecki, Adrian; Błaszczak, Wioletta; Lamparski, Grzegorz; Amarowicz, Ryszard; Fornal, Józef; Jeliński, Tomasz

    2016-03-01

    The influence of high hydrostatic pressure (HHP) processing in parallel with oak chip maceration on the physicochemical and sensory properties of a young red wine was investigated preliminarily. Wines were treated by HHP at 250, 450 and 650MPa for up to 45min and French oak chips (5g/L) were added. HHP enhanced the extraction of phenolics from oak chips. The phenolic contents and antioxidant activity of the wine increased after HHP processing in the presence of oak chips. Meanwhile, the anthocyanin content and wine color intensity decreased in the first 5min of pressure treatment and then increased gradually. The multivariate analysis revealed that "pressure holding time" was the key factor affecting wine physicochemical characteristics during HHP processing in the presence of oak chips. Furthermore, oak chip maceration with and without HHP processing weakened the intensities of several sensory attributes and provided the wine with an artificial taste. PMID:26471591

  1. Regional Homogeneity of Resting-State Brain Activity Suppresses the Effect of Dopamine-Related Genes on Sensory Processing Sensitivity

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Chuansheng; Moyzis, Robert; Xia, Mingrui; He, Yong; Xue, Gui; Li, Jin; He, Qinghua; Lei, Xuemei; Wang, Yunxin; Liu, Bin; Chen, Wen; Zhu, Bi; Dong, Qi

    2015-01-01

    Sensory processing sensitivity (SPS) is an intrinsic personality trait whose genetic and neural bases have recently been studied. The current study used a neural mediation model to explore whether resting-state brain functions mediated the effects of dopamine-related genes on SPS. 298 healthy Chinese college students (96 males, mean age = 20.42 years, SD = 0.89) were scanned with magnetic resonance imaging during resting state, genotyped for 98 loci within the dopamine system, and administered the Highly Sensitive Person Scale. We extracted a “gene score” that summarized the genetic variations representing the 10 loci that were significantly linked to SPS, and then used path analysis to search for brain regions whose resting-state data would help explain the gene-behavior association. Mediation analysis revealed that temporal homogeneity of regional spontaneous activity (ReHo) in the precuneus actually suppressed the effect of dopamine-related genes on SPS. The path model explained 16% of the variance of SPS. This study represents the first attempt at using a multi-gene voxel-based neural mediation model to explore the complex relations among genes, brain, and personality. PMID:26308205

  2. Effects of serotonin depletion on punishment processing in the orbitofrontal and anterior cingulate cortices of healthy women.

    PubMed

    Helmbold, K; Zvyagintsev, M; Dahmen, B; Bubenzer-Busch, S; Gaber, T J; Crockett, M J; Klasen, M; Sánchez, C L; Eisert, A; Konrad, K; Habel, U; Herpertz-Dahlmann, B; Zepf, F D

    2015-06-01

    Diminished synthesis of the neurotransmitter serotonin (5-HT) has been linked to disrupted impulse control in aversive contexts. However, the neural correlates underlying a serotonergic modulation of female impulsivity remain unclear. The present study investigated punishment-induced inhibition in healthy young women. Eighteen healthy female subjects (aged 20-31) participated in a double-blinded, counterbalanced, placebo-controlled, within subjects, repeated measures study. They were assessed on two randomly assigned occasions that were controlled for menstrual cycle phase. In a randomized order, one day, acute tryptophan depletion (ATD) was used to reduce 5-HT synthesis in the brain. On the other day, participants received a tryptophan-balanced amino acid load (BAL) as a control condition. Three hours after administration of ATD/BAL, neural activity was recorded during a modified Go/No-Go task implementing reward or punishment processes using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI). Neural activation during No-Go trials in punishment conditions after BAL versus ATD administration correlated positively with the magnitude of central 5-HT depletion in the ventral and subgenual anterior cingulate cortices (ACC). Furthermore, neural activation in the medial orbitofrontal cortex (mOFC) and the dorsal ACC correlated positively with trait impulsivity. The results indicate reduced neural sensitivity to punishment after short-term depletion of 5-HT in brain areas related to emotion regulation (subgenual ACC) increasing with depletion magnitude and in brain areas related to appraisal and expression of emotions (mOFC and dorsal ACC), increasing with trait impulsivity. This suggests a serotonergic modulation of neural circuits related to emotion regulation, impulsive behavior, and punishment processing in females. PMID:25869157

  3. Oscillatory Hierarchy Controlling Cortical Excitability and Stimulus Integration

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Shah, A. S.; Lakatos, P.; McGinnis, T.; O'Connell, N.; Mills, A.; Knuth, K. H.; Chen, C.; Karmos, G.; Schroeder, C. E.

    2004-01-01

    Cortical gamma band oscillations have been recorded in sensory cortices of cats and monkeys, and are thought to aid in perceptual binding. Gamma activity has also been recorded in the rat hippocampus and entorhinal cortex, where it has been shown, that field gamma power is modulated at theta frequency. Since the power of gamma activity in the sensory cortices is not constant (gamma-bursts). we decided to examine the relationship between gamma power and the phase of low frequency oscillation in the auditory cortex of the awake macaque. Macaque monkeys were surgically prepared for chronic awake electrophysiological recording. During the time of the experiments. linear array multielectrodes were inserted in area AI to obtain laminar current source density (CSD) and multiunit activity profiles. Instantaneous theta and gamma power and phase was extracted by applying the Morlet wavelet transformation to the CSD. Gamma power was averaged for every 1 degree of low frequency oscillations to calculate power-phase relation. Both gamma and theta-delta power are largest in the supragranular layers. Power modulation of gamma activity is phase locked to spontaneous, as well as stimulus-related local theta and delta field oscillations. Our analysis also revealed that the power of theta oscillations is always largest at a certain phase of delta oscillation. Auditory stimuli produce evoked responses in the theta band (Le., there is pre- to post-stimulus addition of theta power), but there is also indication that stimuli may cause partial phase re-setting of spontaneous delta (and thus also theta and gamma) oscillations. We also show that spontaneous oscillations might play a role in the processing of incoming sensory signals by 'preparing' the cortex.

  4. Visual cortical areas of the mouse: comparison of parcellation and network structure with primates

    PubMed Central

    Laramée, Marie-Eve; Boire, Denis

    2015-01-01

    Brains have evolved to optimize sensory processing. In primates, complex cognitive tasks must be executed and evolution led to the development of large brains with many cortical areas. Rodents do not accomplish cognitive tasks of the same level of complexity as primates and remain with small brains both in relative and absolute terms. But is a small brain necessarily a simple brain? In this review, several aspects of the visual cortical networks have been compared between rodents and primates. The visual system has been used as a model to evaluate the level of complexity of the cortical circuits at the anatomical and functional levels. The evolutionary constraints are first presented in order to appreciate the rules for the development of the brain and its underlying circuits. The organization of sensory pathways, with their parallel and cross-modal circuits, is also examined. Other features of brain networks, often considered as imposing constraints on the development of underlying circuitry, are also discussed and their effect on the complexity of the mouse and primate brain are inspected. In this review, we discuss the common features of cortical circuits in mice and primates and see how these can be useful in understanding visual processing in these animals. PMID:25620914

  5. Temporal Lobe Cortical Thickness Correlations Differentiate the Migraine Brain from the Healthy Brain

    PubMed Central

    Schwedt, Todd J.; Berisha, Visar; Chong, Catherine D.

    2015-01-01

    Background Interregional cortical thickness correlations reflect underlying brain structural connectivity and functional connectivity. A few prior studies have shown that migraine is associated with atypical cortical brain structure and atypical functional connectivity amongst cortical regions that participate in sensory processing. However, the specific brain regions that most accurately differentiate the migraine brain from the healthy brain have yet to be determined. The aim of this study was to identify the brain regions that comprised interregional cortical thickness correlations that most differed between migraineurs and healthy controls. Methods This was a cross-sectional brain magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) investigation of 64 adults with migraine and 39 healthy control subjects recruited from tertiary-care medical centers and their surrounding communities. All subjects underwent structural brain MRI imaging on a 3T scanner. Cortical thickness was determined for 70 brain regions that cover the cerebral cortex and cortical thickness correlations amongst these regions were calculated. Cortical thickness correlations that best differentiated groups of six migraineurs from controls and vice versa were identified. Results A model containing 15 interregional cortical thickness correlations differentiated groups of migraineurs from healthy controls with high accuracy. The right temporal pole was involved in 13 of the 15 interregional correlations while the right middle temporal cortex was involved in the other two. Conclusions A model consisting of 15 interregional cortical thickness correlations accurately differentiates the brains of small groups of migraineurs from those of healthy controls. Correlations with the right temporal pole were highly represented in this classifier, suggesting that this region plays an important role in migraine pathophysiology. PMID:25679805

  6. Physicochemical and sensory evaluation of some cooking banana (Musa spp.) for boiling and frying process.

    PubMed

    Belayneh, M; Workneh, T S; Belew, D

    2014-12-01

    Experiments were conducted to study physicochemical properties of four cooking banana varieties (Cardaba, Nijiru, Matoke and Kitawira) and to determine their suitability for chips processing and boiling quality. A randomized complete block design with three replications was employed. Pulp to peel ratio, pulp firmness (before and after), total soluble solids, pH, titratable acidity, ascorbic acid, ease of peeling, pulp water absorption, duration of cooking (or boiling) and dry matter are the most important parameters to evaluate the quality of cooking banana including plantain. The different variety affected the fruit physical characteristics significantly (P ≤ 0.05). The Cardaba varieties fruit was found to be the heaviest and the longest. The Kitawira and Nijiru varieties had the smallest, shortest and thinnest fruit. The Cardaba contained 88 % more edible portions per unit fresh weight than the peel. The Nijiru, Matoke and Kitawira contained more pulp weight than peel weight. Most fruit chemical quality parameters were significantly (P ≤ 0.05) affected by the varieties. Similarly, the boiling and chips qualities were significantly (P ≤ 0.05) affected by varieties. Among others, the Cardaba variety was found to have high fruit weight, fruit length, fruit girth, fruit volume, total soluble solids, ascorbic acid, dry matter and low total titratable acidity. Thus, Cardaba provided the best quality boiled pulp which can serve for diversified culinary purposes. Generally, the Nijiru, Kitawira and Matoke varieties were found to be superior to produce acceptable quality chips. These varieties are recommended for chips development by food processors in Ethiopia. PMID:25477630

  7. Investigating developmental changes in sensory processing: visual mismatch response in healthy children

    PubMed Central

    Cleary, Katherine M.; Donkers, Franc C. L.; Evans, Anna M.; Belger, Aysenil

    2013-01-01

    The ability to detect small changes in one's visual environment is important for effective adaptation to and interaction with a wide variety of external stimuli. Much research has studied the auditory mismatch negativity (MMN), or the brain's automatic response to rare changes in a series of repetitive auditory stimuli. But recent studies indicate that a visual homolog to this component of the event-related potential (ERP) can also be measured. While most visual mismatch response (vMMR) studies have focused on adult populations, few studies have investigated this response in healthy children, and little is known about the developmental nature of this phenomenon. We recorded EEG data in 22 healthy children (ages 8–12) and 20 healthy adults (ages 18–42). Participants were presented with two types of task irrelevant background images of black and gray gratings while performing a visual target detection task. Spatial frequency of the background gratings was varied with 85% of the gratings being of high spatial frequency (HSF; i.e., standard background stimulus) and 15% of the images being of low spatial frequency (LSF; i.e., deviant background stimulus). Results in the adult group showed a robust mismatch response to deviant (non-target) background stimuli at around 150 ms post-stimulus at occipital electrode locations. In the children, two negativities around 150 and 230 ms post-stimulus at occipital electrode locations and a positivity around 250 ms post-stimulus at fronto-central electrode locations were observed. In addition, larger amplitudes of P1 and longer latencies of P1 and N1 to deviant background stimuli were observed in children vs. adults. These results suggest that processing of deviant stimuli presented outside the focus of attention in 8–12-year-old children differs from those in adults, and are in agreement with previous research. They also suggest that the vMMR may change across the lifespan in accordance with other components of the visual ERP

  8. Early sensory-perceptual processing deficits for affectively valenced inputs are more pronounced in schizophrenia patients with a history of violence than in their non-violent peers.

    PubMed

    De Sanctis, Pierfilippo; Foxe, John J; Czobor, Pal; Wylie, Glenn R; Kamiel, Stephanie M; Huening, Jessica; Nair-Collins, Mike; Krakowski, Menahem I

    2013-08-01

    Individuals with schizophrenia are more prone to violent behaviors than the general population. It is increasingly recognized that processing of emotionally valenced stimuli is impaired in schizophrenia, a deficit that may play a role in aggressive behavior. Our goal was to establish whether patients with a history of violence would show more severe deficits in processing emotionally valenced inputs than non-violent patients. Using event-related potentials, we measured how early during processing of emotional valence, evidence of aberrant function was observed. A total of 42 schizophrenia patients (21 with history of violence; 21 without) and 28 healthy controls were tested. Participants performed an inhibitory control task, making speeded responses to pictorial stimuli. Pictures occasionally repeated twice and participants withheld responses to these repeats. Valenced pictures from the International Affective Picture System were presented. Results in controls showed modulations during the earliest phases of sensory processing (<100 ms) for negatively valenced pictures. A cascade of modulations ensued, involving sensory and perceptual processing stages. In contrast, neither schizophrenia group showed early differentiation. Non-violent patients showed earliest modulations beginning ∼150 ms. For violent patients, however, earliest modulations were further delayed and highly attenuated. The current study reveals sensory-perceptual processing dysfunction for negatively valenced inputs, which is particularly pronounced in aggressive patients. PMID:22563006

  9. Auditory Cortex Responses to Clicks and Sensory Modulation Difficulties in Children with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD)

    PubMed Central

    Orekhova, Elena V.; Tsetlin, Marina M.; Butorina, Anna V.; Novikova, Svetlana I.; Gratchev, Vitaliy V.; Sokolov, Pavel A.; Elam, Mikael; Stroganova, Tatiana A.

    2012-01-01

    Auditory sensory modulation difficulties are common in autism spectrum disorders (ASD) and may stem from a faulty arousal system that compromises the ability to regulate an optimal response. To study neurophysiological correlates of the sensory modulation difficulties, we recorded magnetic field responses to clicks in 14 ASD and 15 typically developing (TD) children. We further analyzed the P100m, which is the most prominent component of the auditory magnetic field response in children and may reflect preattentive arousal processes. The P100m was rightward lateralized in the TD, but not in the ASD children, who showed a tendency toward P100m reduction in the right hemisphere (RH). The atypical P100m lateralization in the ASD subjects was associated with greater severity of sensory abnormalities assessed by Short Sensory Profile, as well as with auditory hypersensitivity during the first two years of life. The absence of right-hemispheric predominance of the P100m and a tendency for its right-hemispheric reduction in the ASD children suggests disturbance of the RH ascending reticular brainstem pathways and/or their thalamic and cortical projections, which in turn may contribute to abnormal arousal and attention. The correlation of sensory abnormalities with atypical, more leftward, P100m lateralization suggests that reduced preattentive processing in the right hemisphere and/or its shift to the left hemisphere may contribute to abnormal sensory behavior in ASD. PMID:22768163

  10. EFFECTS OF CHEMICAL PROCESSING AND OXIDE ETHYLENE STERILIZATION ON CORTICAL AND CANCELLOUS RAT BONE: A LIGHT AND ELECTRON SCANNING MICROSCOPY STUDY

    PubMed Central

    Castiglia, Marcello Teixeira; da Silva, Juliano Voltarelli F.; Frezarim Thomazini, José Armendir; Volpon, José Batista

    2015-01-01

    To evaluate, under microscopic examination, the structural changes displayed by the trabecular and cortical bones after being processed chemically and sterilized by ethylene oxide. Methods: Samples of cancellous and cortical bones obtained from young female albinus rats (Wistar) were assigned to four groups according to the type of treatment: Group I- drying; Group II- drying and ethylene oxide sterilization; III- chemical treatment; IV- chemical treatment and ethylene oxide sterilization. Half of this material was analyzed under ordinary light microscope and the other half using scanning electron microscopy. Results: In all the samples, regardless the group, there was good preservation of the general morphology. For samples submitted to the chemical processing there was better preservation of the cellular content, whereas there was amalgamation of the fibres when ethylene oxide was used. Conclusion: Treatment with ethylene oxide caused amalgamation of the fibers, possibly because of heating and the chemical treatment contributed to a better cellular preservation of the osseous structure. PMID:26998450

  11. Extensive Cochleotopic Mapping of Human Auditory Cortical Fields Obtained with Phase-Encoding fMRI

    PubMed Central

    Amedi, Amir

    2011-01-01

    The primary sensory cortices are characterized by a topographical mapping of basic sensory features which is considered to deteriorate in higher-order areas in favor of complex sensory features. Recently, however, retinotopic maps were also discovered in the higher-order visual, parietal and prefrontal cortices. The discovery of these maps enabled the distinction between visual regions, clarified their function and hierarchical processing. Could such extension of topographical mapping to high-order processing regions apply to the auditory modality as well? This question has been studied previously in animal models but only sporadically in humans, whose anatomical and functional organization may differ from that of animals (e.g. unique verbal functions and Heschl's gyrus curvature). Here we applied fMRI spectral analysis to investigate the cochleotopic organization of the human cerebral cortex. We found multiple mirror-symmetric novel cochleotopic maps covering most of the core and high-order human auditory cortex, including regions considered non-cochleotopic, stretching all the way to the superior temporal sulcus. These maps suggest that topographical mapping persists well beyond the auditory core and belt, and that the mirror-symmetry of topographical preferences may be a fundamental principle across sensory modalities. PMID:21448274

  12. Sensory analysis

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Sensory evaluation can answer questions about a product that instruments cannot. The human subject is the instrument, and data can provide a wealth of information for a product developer, or results can be very variable and erroneous if all the precautions to minimize bias and external noise are no...

  13. Sensory Dysfunction

    MedlinePlus

    ... to Web version Sensory Dysfunction Overview Why are smell and taste important? Your senses of smell and taste let you fully enjoy the scents ... bitter and sour. Flavor involves both taste and smell. For example, because a person is able to ...

  14. Atypical coordination of cortical oscillations in response to speech in autism

    PubMed Central

    Jochaut, Delphine; Lehongre, Katia; Saitovitch, Ana; Devauchelle, Anne-Dominique; Olasagasti, Itsaso; Chabane, Nadia; Zilbovicius, Monica; Giraud, Anne-Lise

    2015-01-01

    Subjects with autism often show language difficulties, but it is unclear how they relate to neurophysiological anomalies of cortical speech processing. We used combined EEG and fMRI in 13 subjects with autism and 13 control participants and show that in autism, gamma and theta cortical activity do not engage synergistically in response to speech. Theta activity in left auditory cortex fails to track speech modulations, and to down-regulate gamma oscillations in the group with autism. This deficit predicts the severity of both verbal imp