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Hear Res. 2011 Jul;277(1-2):67-77. doi: 10.1016/j.heares.2011.03.008. Epub 2011 Mar 21.

Assessment of temporal state-dependent interactions between auditory fMRI responses to desired and undesired acoustic sources.

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School of Electrical and Computer Engineering, Purdue University, EE Building, 465 Northwestern Avenue, West Lafayette, IN 47907-2035, USA.


A confounding factor in auditory functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) experiments is the presence of the acoustic noise inherently associated with the echo planar imaging acquisition technique. Previous studies have demonstrated that this noise can induce unwanted neuronal responses that can mask stimulus-induced responses. Similarly, activation accumulated over multiple stimuli has been demonstrated to elevate the baseline, thus reducing the dynamic range available for subsequent responses. To best evaluate responses to auditory stimuli, it is necessary to account for the presence of all recent acoustic stimulation, beginning with an understanding of the attenuating effects brought about by interaction between and among induced unwanted neuronal responses, and responses to desired auditory stimuli. This study focuses on the characterization of the duration of this temporal memory and qualitative assessment of the associated response attenuation. Two experimental parameters--inter-stimulus interval (ISI) and repetition time (TR)--were varied during an fMRI experiment in which participants were asked to passively attend to an auditory stimulus. Results present evidence of a state-dependent interaction between induced responses. As expected, attenuating effects of these interactions become less significant as TR and ISI increase and in contrast to previous work, persist up to 18s after a stimulus presentation.

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