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Biol Cybern. 2007 Dec;97(5-6):397-411. Epub 2007 Oct 9.

The role of the auditory periphery in comodulation detection difference and comodulation masking release.

Author information

1
International Graduate School for Neurosensory Sciences, Carl-von-Ossietzky Universität Oldenburg, 26111 Oldenburg, Germany. buschermoehle@icbm.de

Abstract

Natural sounds often exhibit correlated amplitude modulations at different frequency regions, so-called comodulation. Therefore, the ear might be especially adapted to these kinds of sounds. Two effects have been related to the sensitivity of the auditory system to common modulations across frequency: comodulation detection difference (CDD) and comodulation masking release (CMR). Research on these effects has been done on the psychophysical and on the neurophysiological level in humans and other animals. Until now, models have focused only on one of the effects. In the present study, a simple model based on data from neuronal recordings obtained during CDD experiments with starlings is discussed. This model demonstrates that simple peripheral processing in the ear can go a substantial way to explaining psychophysical signal detection thresholds in response to CDD and CMR stimuli. Moreover, it is largely analytically tractable. The model is based on peripheral processing and incorporates the basic steps frequency filtering, envelope extraction, and compression. Signal detection is performed based on changes in the mean compressed envelope of the filtered stimulus. Comparing the results of the model with data from the literature, the scope of this unifying approach to CDD and CMR is discussed.

PMID:
17924134
DOI:
10.1007/s00422-007-0179-8
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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