Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

How do we combine faces and voices?

Date:
March 10, 2011
Source:
Elsevier
Summary:
Faces and voices are known to be some of the key features that enable us to identify individual people, and they are rich in information such as gender, age, and body size, that lead to a unique identity for a person. A large body of neuropsychological and neuroimaging research has already determined the various brain regions responsible for face recognition and voice recognition separately, but exactly how our brain goes about combining the two different types of information (visual and auditory) is still unknown. Now a new study has revealed the brain networks involved in this "cross-modal" person recognition.

Human social interactions are shaped by our ability to recognise people. Faces and voices are known to be some of the key features that enable us to identify individual people, and they are rich in information such as gender, age, and body size, that lead to a unique identity for a person. A large body of neuropsychological and neuroimaging research has already determined the various brain regions responsible for face recognition and voice recognition separately, but exactly how our brain goes about combining the two different types of information (visual and auditory) is still unknown.

Now a new study, published in the March 2011 issue of Elsevier's Cortex, has revealed the brain networks involved in this "cross-modal" person recognition.

A team of researchers in Belgium used functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) to measure brain activity in 14 participants while they performed a task in which they recognised previously learned faces, voices, and voice-face associations. Dr Frιdιric Joassin, Dr Salvatore Campanella, and colleagues compared the brain areas activated when recognising people using information from only their faces (visual areas), or only their voices (auditory areas), to those activated when using the combined information. They found that voice-face recognition activated specific "cross-modal" regions of the brain, located in areas known as the left angular gyrus and the right hippocampus. Further analysis also confirmed that the right hippocampus was connected to the separate visual and auditory areas of the brain.

Recognising a person from the combined information of their face and voice therefore relies not only on the same brain networks involved in using only visual or only auditory information, but also on brain regions associated with attention (left angular gyrus) and memory (hippocampus). According to the authors, the findings support a dynamic vision of cross-modal interactions in which the areas involved in processing both face and voice information are not simply the final stage of a hierarchical model, but rather, they may work in parallel and influence each other.


Story Source:

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


Journal Reference:

  1. Frιdιric Joassin, Mauro Pesenti, Pierre Maurage, Emilie Verreckt, Raymond Bruyer, Salvatore Campanella. Cross-modal interactions between human faces and voices involved in person recognition. Cortex, 2011; 47 (3): 367 DOI: 10.1016/j.cortex.2010.03.003

Cite This Page:

Elsevier. "How do we combine faces and voices?." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 10 March 2011. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/03/110309101809.htm>.
Elsevier. (2011, March 10). How do we combine faces and voices?. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 16, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/03/110309101809.htm
Elsevier. "How do we combine faces and voices?." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/03/110309101809.htm (accessed April 16, 2014).

Share This



More Mind & Brain News

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Are School Dress Codes Too Strict?

Are School Dress Codes Too Strict?

AP (Apr. 16, 2014) — Pushing the limits on style and self-expression is a rite of passage for teens and even younger kids. How far should schools go with their dress codes? The courts have sided with schools in an era when school safety is paramount. (April 16) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Could Even Casual Marijuana Use Alter Your Brain?

Could Even Casual Marijuana Use Alter Your Brain?

Newsy (Apr. 16, 2014) — A new study conducted by researchers at Northwestern and Harvard suggests even casual marijuana use can alter your brain. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Couples Who Sleep Less Than An Inch Apart Might Be Happiest

Couples Who Sleep Less Than An Inch Apart Might Be Happiest

Newsy (Apr. 16, 2014) — A new study by British researchers suggests couples' sleeping positions might reflect their happiness. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Cognitive Function: Is It All Downhill From Age 24?

Cognitive Function: Is It All Downhill From Age 24?

Newsy (Apr. 15, 2014) — A new study out of Canada says cognitive motor performance begins deteriorating around age 24. Video provided by Newsy
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