Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Left Brain Helps Hear Through The Noise

Date:
November 18, 2007
Source:
BioMed Central
Summary:
Our brain is very good at picking up speech even in a noisy room, an adaptation essential for holding a conversation at a cocktail party, and now we are beginning to understand the neural interactions that underlie this ability. Investigations using neuroimaging have revealed that the brain's left hemisphere helps discern the signal from the noise.

Our brain is very good at picking up speech even in a noisy room, an adaptation essential for holding a conversation at a cocktail party, and now we are beginning to understand the neural interactions that underlie this ability. An international research team reports today, in the online open access journal BMC Biology, how investigations using neuroimaging have revealed that the brain's left hemisphere helps discern the signal from the noise.

In our daily lives, we are exposed to many different sounds from multiple sources at the same time, from traffic noise to background chatter. These noisy signals interact and compete with each other when they are being processed by the brain, a process called simultaneous masking. The brain's response to masking stimuli brings about the 'cocktail-party effect' so that we are able to hear a particular sound, even in presence of a competing sound or background noise.

Hidehiko Okamoto and colleagues of the Institute for Biomagnetism and Biosignal analysis, Muenster, Germany, and colleagues in Japan and Canada have used a neuroimaging technique known as magnetoencephalography (MEG) to follow the underlying neural mechanisms and hemispheric differences related to simultaneous masking as volunteers listened to different combinations of test and background sounds. Test sounds were played either to the left or to the right ear, while the competing noise was presented either to the same or to the opposite ear.

By monitoring the brain's response to these different sound combinations, the team observed that the left hemisphere was the site of most neural activity associated with processing sounds in a noisy environment.

Journal article: Left hemispheric dominance during auditory processing in noisy environment, Hidehiko Okamoto, Henning Stracke, Bernhard Ross, Ryusuke Kakigi and Christo Pantev, BMC Biology (in press)


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by BioMed Central. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

BioMed Central. "Left Brain Helps Hear Through The Noise." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 18 November 2007. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/11/071115083707.htm>.
BioMed Central. (2007, November 18). Left Brain Helps Hear Through The Noise. ScienceDaily. Retrieved August 21, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/11/071115083707.htm
BioMed Central. "Left Brain Helps Hear Through The Noise." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/11/071115083707.htm (accessed August 21, 2014).

Share This




More Mind & Brain News

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Lost Brain Cells To Blame For Sleep Problems Among Seniors

Lost Brain Cells To Blame For Sleep Problems Among Seniors

Newsy (Aug. 21, 2014) According to a new study, elderly people might have trouble sleeping because of the loss of a certain group of neurons in the brain. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Do More Wedding Guests Make A Happier Marriage?

Do More Wedding Guests Make A Happier Marriage?

Newsy (Aug. 20, 2014) A new study found couples who had at least 150 guests at their weddings were more likely to report being happy in their marriages. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Charter Schools Alter Post-Katrina Landscape

Charter Schools Alter Post-Katrina Landscape

AP (Aug. 20, 2014) Nine years after Hurricane Katrina, charter schools are the new reality of public education in New Orleans. The state of Louisiana took over most of the city's public schools after the killer storm in 2005. (Aug. 20) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Researcher Testing on-Field Concussion Scanners

Researcher Testing on-Field Concussion Scanners

AP (Aug. 19, 2014) Four Texas high school football programs are trying out an experimental system designed to diagnose concussions on the field. The technology is in response to growing concern over head trauma in America's most watched sport. (Aug. 19) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins