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Hearing and Donuts (Brain and Bagels) Seminar
April 26 @ 8:30 am - 9:30 am
Presenter: Mitchell Steinschneider, MD, PhD, Albert Einstein College of Medicine, NY
Topic: Speech Processing as Revealed Through Direct Recordings from Human Auditory and Auditory-related Cortex
Neurosurgical remediation of medically intractable epilepsy has become an ever more valuable treatment option. Increased use of this option, coupled to the willingness of patients to participate in research studies while undergoing intracranial recordings to identify seizure foci, has provided a unique opportunity to study speech and language processing at a temporal and spatial resolution previously unobtainable through more indirect means. This talk will highlight several insights into these processes that have resulted from these recordings. It will begin with a description of the underlying structural organization of auditory cortex that initiates cortical events associated with speech perception. This introduction will be followed by a description of ever more complex features of speech processing, from basic mechanisms transforming acoustic inputs into phonemic units, to features of semantic encoding. It will conclude with unsuspected findings obtained when speech is studied in a dialog-based paradigm, as well as new lines of inquiry that our laboratory has initiated.