New paper by Hen­ry, Her­rmann, & Obleser in Jour­nal of Neu­ro­science

For­mer Oble­ser­lab post­doc Mol­ly Hen­ry with Björn Her­rmann and Jonas Obleser has a new pub­li­ca­tion in press at Jour­nal of Neu­ro­science.

Neur­al microstates gov­ern per­cep­tion of audi­to­ry input with­out rhyth­mic struc­ture

by Hen­ry, MJ, Her­mann, B, Obleser, J (in press). J Neu­rosci.

In devi­a­tion from Molly’s for­mer par­a­digms, we here aimed at bet­ter under­stand­ing the role of oscil­la­to­ry (as well as non-oscil­la­to­ry) slow neur­al activ­i­ty in shap­ing audi­to­ry per­cep­tion when the stim­u­lus is devoid of any rhyth­mic struc­ture.

For a change, the sig­nif­i­cance state­ment and a teas­er fig­ure are shown below.

fluctuation

Abstract
Our abil­i­ty to hear faint sounds fluc­tu­ates togeth­er with slow brain activ­i­ty that syn­chro­nizes with envi­ron­men­tal rhythms. How­ev­er, it is so far not known how brain activ­i­ty at dif­fer­ent time scales might inter­act to influ­ence per­cep­tion when there is no rhythm with which brain activ­i­ty can syn­chro­nize. Here, we used elec­troen­cephalog­ra­phy (EEG) to mea­sure brain activ­i­ty while par­tic­i­pants lis­tened for short silences that inter­rupt­ed ongo­ing noise. We exam­ined brain activ­i­ty in three dif­fer­ent fre­quen­cy bands: delta, theta, and alpha. Par­tic­i­pants’ abil­i­ty to detect gaps depend­ed on dif­fer­ent num­bers of fre­quen­cy bands — some­times one, two, or three — at dif­fer­ent times. Changes in the num­ber of fre­quen­cy bands that pre­dict per­cep­tion are a hall­mark of a com­plex neur­al sys­tem.