Browsing by Subject "P3a"

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  • Lindstrom, R.; Lepistö-Paisley, T.; Makkonen, T.; Reinvall, O.; Nieminen-von Wendt, T.; Alen, R.; Kujala, T. (2018)
    Objective: The present study explored the processing of emotional speech prosody in school-aged children with autism spectrum disorders (ASD) but without marked language impairments (children with ASD [no LI]). Methods: The mismatch negativity (MMN)/the late discriminative negativity (LDN), reflecting pre-attentive auditory discrimination processes, and the P3a, indexing involuntary orienting to attention-catching changes, were recorded to natural word stimuli uttered with different emotional connotations (neutral, sad, scornful and commanding). Perceptual prosody discrimination was addressed with a behavioral sound-discrimination test. Results: Overall, children with ASD (no LI) were slower in behaviorally discriminating prosodic features of speech stimuli than typically developed control children. Further, smaller standard-stimulus event related potentials (ERPs) and MMN/LDNs were found in children with ASD (no LI) than in controls. In addition, the amplitude of the P3a was diminished and differentially distributed on the scalp in children with ASD (no LI) than in control children. Conclusions: Processing of words and changes in emotional speech prosody is impaired at various levels of information processing in school-aged children with ASD (no LI). Significance: The results suggest that low-level speech sound discrimination and orienting deficits might contribute to emotional speech prosody processing impairments observed in ASD. (C) 2018 International Federation of Clinical Neurophysiology. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
  • Nowak, Kamila; Oron, Anna; Szymaszek, Aneta; Leminen, Miika; Naatanen, Risto; Szelag, Elzbieta (2016)
    The present study investigates age-related changes in duration discrimination in millisecond time domain. We tested young (N = 20, mean age = 24.5, SD = 2.97) and elderly (N = 20, mean age = 65.2, SD = 2.94) subjects using the mismatch negativity (MMN) paradigm. White-noise bursts of two different durations (50 and 10 ms) were presented in two oddball blocks. In one block (Increment Condition), the repetitive sequence of 10 ms standards was interspersed by occasional 50 ms deviants. In the Decrement Condition, the roles of the two stimuli were reversed. We analyzed the P1-N1 complex, MMN and P3a and found the effect of age for all these components. Moreover, the impact of stimulus presentation condition (increment/decrement) was observed for MMN and P3a. Our results confirmed the previous evidence for deteriorated duration discrimination in elderly people. Additionally, we found that this effect may be influenced by procedural factors.
  • Putkinen, Vesa; Saarikivi, Katri; Chan, Tsz Man Vanessa; Tervaniemi, Mari (2021)
    Previous work suggests that musical training in childhood is associated with enhanced executive functions. However, it is unknown whether this advantage extends to selective attention-another central aspect of executive control. We recorded a well-established event-related potential (ERP) marker of distraction, the P3a, during an audio-visual task to investigate the maturation of selective attention in musically trained children and adolescents aged 10-17 years and a control group of untrained peers. The task required categorization of visual stimuli, while a sequence of standard sounds and distracting novel sounds were presented in the background. The music group outperformed the control group in the categorization task and the younger children in the music group showed a smaller P3a to the distracting novel sounds than their peers in the control group. Also, a negative response elicited by the novel sounds in the N1/MMN time range (similar to 150-200 ms) was smaller in the music group. These results indicate that the music group was less easily distracted by the task-irrelevant sound stimulation and gated the neural processing of the novel sounds more efficiently than the control group. Furthermore, we replicated our previous finding that, relative to the control group, the musically trained children and adolescents performed faster in standardized tests for inhibition and set shifting. These results provide novel converging behavioral and electrophysiological evidence from a cross-modal paradigm for accelerated maturation of selective attention in musically trained children and adolescents and corroborate the association between musical training and enhanced inhibition and set shifting.
  • Sokka, Laura; Leinikka, Marianne; Korpela, Jussi; Henelius, Andreas; Ahonen, Lauri; Alain, Claude; Alho, Kimmo; Huotilainen, Minna (2016)
    Individuals with job burnout symptoms often report having cognitive difficulties, but related electrophysiological studies are scarce. We assessed the impact of burnout on performing a visual task with varying memory loads, and on involuntary attention switch to distractor sounds using scalp recordings of event-related potentials (ERPs). Task performance was comparable between burnout and control groups. The distractor sounds elicited a P3a response, which was reduced in the burnout group. This suggests burnout-related deficits in processing novel and potentially important events during task performance. In the burnout group, we also observed a decrease in working-memory related P3b responses over posterior scalp and increase over frontal areas. These results suggest that burnout is associated with deficits in cognitive control needed to monitor and update information in working memory. Successful task performance in burnout might require additional recruitment of anterior regions to compensate the decrement in posterior activity. (C) 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
  • Haapala, Sini; Niemitalo-Haapola, Elina; Raappana, Antti; Kujala, Tiia; Suominen, Kalervo; Jansson-Verkasalo, Eira; Kujala, Teija (2016)
    Background: A large group of young children are exposed to repetitive middle ear infections but the effects of the fluctuating hearing sensations on immature central auditory system are not fully understood. The present study investigated the consequences of early childhood recurrent acute otitis media (RAOM) on involuntary auditory attention switching. Methods: By utilizing auditory event-related potentials, neural mechanisms of involuntary attention were studied in 22-26 month-old children (N = 18) who had had an early childhood RAOM and healthy controls (N = 19). The earlier and later phase of the P3a (eP3a and lP3a) and the late negativity (LN) were measured for embedded novel sounds in the passive multi-feature paradigm with repeating standard and deviant syllable stimuli. The children with RAOM had tympanostomy tubes inserted and all the children in both study groups had to have clinically healthy ears at the time of the measurement assessed by an otolaryngologist. Results: The results showed that lP3a amplitude diminished less from frontal to central and parietal areas in the children with RAOM than the controls. This might reflect an immature control of involuntary attention switch. Furthermore, the LN latency was longer in children with RAOM than in the controls, which suggests delayed reorientation of attention in RAOM. Conclusions: The lP3a and LN responses are affected in toddlers who have had a RAOM even when their ears are healthy. This suggests detrimental long-term effects of RAOM on the neural mechanisms of involuntary attention.
  • Linnavalli, Tanja; Putkinen, Vesa; Huotilainen, Minna; Tervaniemi, Mari (2018)
    The maturation of 5-6-year-old children's auditory discrimination - indicated by the development of the auditory event-related-potentials (ERPs) - has not been previously studied in longitudinal settings. For the first time, we present here the results based on extensive dataset collected from 75 children. We followed the 5- to 6-year-olds for 20 months and measured their ERPs four times with the same multifeature paradigm with phonemic stimuli. The amplitude of the mismatch negativity (MMN) response increased during this time for vowel, vowel duration and frequency changes. Furthermore, the P3a component started to mature toward adult-like positivity for the vowel, intensity and frequency deviants and the late discriminative negativity (LDN) component decreased with age for vowel and intensity deviants. All the changes in the components seemed to happen during the second follow-up year, when Finnish children are taught letter symbols and other preliminary academic skills before going to school at the age of seven. Therefore, further studies are needed to clarify if these changes in the auditory discrimination are purely age-related or due to increasing linguistic knowledge of the children.
  • Tervaniemi, Mari; Huotilainen, Minna; Brattico, Elvira (2014)
  • Syrjäläinen, Olli-Pekka (Helsingfors universitet, 2015)
    The effects of musical training are a subject of growing interest in the field of cognitive brain research. Earlier it has been found that in addition to honing the skills directly related to musical performance, musical training also can elicit transfer effects in neuronal circuits affecting other areas of cognitive performance. One such function is attention, which is a cognitive process known to mature during childhood. This thesis seeks to investigate whether early-onset musical training is linked to correlates in involuntary attention shift on a neuronal level in school-aged children. The EEG data was gathered from 69 subjects, 54 percent of whom had received musical training. The subjects were between 11 and 17 years of age, and they were divided into two age-groups (between 11 and 13 years and between 15 and 17 years of age), in addition to the division of musically trained and non-trained control group. We assessed the subjects' involuntary shift of attention with the amplitude of early and late P3a component, evoked by unattended novel stimuli during a visual task the subjects were instructed to attend to. The results show that the amplitude of early P3a decreased for recurring novel stimuli. The effect was found for the musically trained group, but it was absent in the control group. For the younger subjects, the amplitude for late P3a was larger for the control group in comparison to the musically trained group. No such effect was found with the older subjects. Late P3a amplitude was larger for the young subjects of the control group in comparison to the older subjects, an effect that was absent in musically trained subjects. Both the age-related difference in P3a amplitude for the control group, and the training-related difference for the younger subjects suggest maturation of attentional processes. The amplitude of the P3a has earlier been connected to higher use of resources. In light of this evidence, the results suggest that younger musically trained subjects must allocate fewer resources identifying and processing task-irrelevant novel stimuli compared to the control group. However, any age-related maturation in attentional processes present with the control group in this study is absent in the musically trained group. This leads to an assumption that musically trained subjects simply reach the peak of their attentional skillset earlier than the control group, but display no observed attention-related advantages during the late adolescence.
  • Virtala, Paula; Partanen, Eino; Tervaniemi, Mari; Kujala, Teija (2018)
    To process complex stimuli like language, our auditory system must tolerate large acoustic variance, like speaker variability, and still be sensitive enough to discriminate between phonemes and to detect complex sound relationships in, e.g., prosodic cues. Our study determined discrimination of speech sounds in input mimicking natural speech variability, and detection of deviations in regular pitch relationships (rule violations) between speech sounds. We investigated the automaticity and the influence of attention and explicit awareness on these changes by recording the neurophysiological mismatch negativity (MMN) and P3a as well as task performance from 21 adults. The results showed neural discrimination of phonemes and rule violations as indicated by MMN and P3a, regardless of whether the sounds were attended or not, even when participants could not explicitly describe the rule. While small sample size precluded statistical analysis of some outcomes, we still found preliminary associations between the MMN amplitudes, task performance, and emerging explicit awareness of the rule. Our results highlight the automaticity of processing complex aspects of speech as a basis for the emerging conscious perception and explicit awareness of speech properties. While MMN operates at the implicit processing level, P3a appears to work at the borderline of implicit and explicit.
  • Putkinen, Vesa; Huotilainen, Minna; Tervaniemi, Mari (2019)
    Musical training in childhood has been linked to enhanced sound encoding at different stages of the auditory processing. In the current study, we used auditory event-related potentials to investigate cortical sound processing in 9- to 15-year-old children (N = 88) with and without musical training. Specifically, we recorded the mismatch negativity (MMN) and P3a responses in an oddball paradigm consisting of standard tone pairs with ascending pitch and deviant tone pairs with descending pitch. A subsample of the children (N = 44) also completed a standardized test of reading ability. The musically trained children showed a larger P3a response to the deviant sound pairs. Furthermore, the amplitude of the P3a correlated with a pseudo-word reading test score. These results corroborate previous findings on enhanced sound encoding in musically trained children and are in line with studies suggesting that neural discrimination of spectrotemporal sound patterns is predictive of reading ability.
  • Tommiska, Marja-Reetta (Helsingin yliopisto, 2020)
    Tavoitteet Valikoivan tarkkaavuuden ja toiminnanohjauksen kehitystä ennustavien tekijöiden tutkimus on tärkeää lapsen optimaalisen kehityksen tukemiseksi. Aivosähkökäyrässä esiintyvien tapahtumasidonnaisten jännitevasteiden avulla on mahdollista tutkia tarkkaavuuden ja tiedonkäsittelyn hermostollista perustaa. P3a-vasteet syntyvät, kun ympäristössä esiintyvä yllättävä ääni vetää tarkkaavaisuuden tahattomasti puoleensa. Tämä tutkimus selvitti, miten esikouluiässä mitattujen tapahtumasidonnaisten P3a-vasteiden amplitudit ja latenssit ennustavat ikätasoisesti kehittyneiden lasten myöhempää suoriutumista sekä vastaustyyliä valikoivaa tarkkaavuutta ja toiminnanohjausta vaativissa tehtävissä. Menetelmät Tutkimuksen koehenkilöinä oli 64 ikätasoisesti kehittynyttä lasta (50% tyttöjä), joiden perheessä tai lähisuvussa ei esiintynyt oppimisvaikeuksia tai neurologisia diagnooseja. Esikouluiässä yllättäviin ääniin syntyvää P3a-vastetta mitattiin lasten keskittyessä katsomaan elokuvaa. Ensimmäisen luokan lopussa lapset suorittivat kaksi tehtävää, joista toinen kuvasti lapsen valikoivaa tarkkaavuutta sekä inhibitiotoimintoja ja toinen näiden lisäksi toiminnanohjauksen ja työmuistin toimintaa. Vastaustyylin arvioimiseksi lapsilta laskettiin huomaamatta jääneet kohdeärsykkeet sekä viivästyneet ja väärät reaktiot ärsykkeisiin. Tulokset Yllättävät äänet synnyttivät lapsilla P3a-jännitevasteen, jonka huippu esiintyi noin 250 ms ärsykkeen esittämisen jälkeen. Yksilölliset esikouluiässä mitatut P3a-amplitudit ja -latenssit eivät kuitenkaan ennustaneet lapsen suoriutumista ensimmäisellä luokalla valikoivan tarkkaavuuden tehtävässä eivätkä tarkkaavuuden ja toiminnanohjauksen tehtävässä. Pojat tekivät tyttöihin verrattuna merkitsevästi enemmän virheitä kummassakin tarkkaavuuden tehtävässä, kun taas tytöillä oli enemmän viivästyneitä reaktioita valikoivan tarkkaavuuden tehtävässä. P3a-vasteet eivät kuitenkaan ennustaneet lasten vastaustyyliä kummassakaan tehtävässä. Johtopäätökset Tämän tutkimuksen tulosten mukaan yllättäville äänille syntyvä P3a-vaste ei sovellu ääniin suuntautuvan valikoivan tarkkaavuuden ja toiminnanohjauksen kehityksen ennustamiseen ikätasoisesti kehittyneillä esikouluikäisillä lapsilla, joilla ei ole lähisuvussaan oppimisvaikeuksia tai neurologisia diagnooseja. Selvitettäväksi tulevaisuudessa jää, ennustaisiko P3a-amplitudi tai -latenssi tarkkaavuutta tai toiminnanohjausta herkemmin häiriintyvyyttä mittaavassa tarkkaavuuden tehtävässä tai näiden taitojen kehitystä tarkkaavaisuushäiriöiden riskiryhmiin kuuluvilla lapsilla.
  • Oja, Lea (Helsingfors universitet, 2005)
    Abnormal involuntary attention may lead to enhanced distractibility and has been proposed to be an underlying factor for cognitive problems in attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). In the present experiment, involuntary attention switching of 6–11-year-old ADHD and healthy children performing an auditory discrimination task was compared. Deterioration of task performance and event-related brain potentials (ERP) to distracting sounds associated with attention switching, were considered as measures of distractibility. During the experiment the children performed an auditory discrimination task in which they were instructed to differentiate two animal sounds from each other. In the task-related sounds presented from loudspeakers in front of the child there were occasional task-irrelevant changes in the sound location. In addition, novel sounds completely unrelated to the task were presented from behind. The hypothesis of the present study was that the ADHD children would get more distracted than the control children as a consequence of the deviance in the direction of the task-related sound and after an occurrence of a task-irrelevant novel sound. The performance of the ADHD group was highly variable. The task-irrelevant novel sounds prolonged the reaction times, decreased the accuracy, and increased the number of omitted responses in the ADHD group more than in the control group. In addition, abnormalities in the ERPs suggest that the ADHD group was more distracted than the control group by the deviances in the task-related sounds and by the novel sounds and that the ADHD group processes the sounds partly in different brain regions than the control group. To understand these regional and functional abnormalities in more detail, additional research is required.
  • Lahti, Outi (Helsingin yliopisto, 2020)
    Objectives. The aim of the current study was to explore the associations between executive functions i.e. working memory, inhibition and cognitive flexibility and auditory event-related potential (ERP) response P3a in 10–11-year-old children. The P3a is considered to reflect involuntary orientation of attention. Previous studies have proposed a relation between P3a and executive functions but there is very little research on the subject. Methods. The data was collected as a part of Arts@School -project. Forty-six children who participated in both electroencephalography recording (EEG) and a test of executive functions during autumn semester of the fourth grade of primary school were included in the current study. Both measurements were conducted during normal schooldays at the school. Children’s executive functions were assessed with a computer-based Modified Flanker task. Event- related potentials were recorded with a multifeature paradigm including a standard sound, five deviant sound types and novel sounds. The stimuli were presented through headphones while the participants were watching a movie without sound. P3a responses to the novel sounds are examined in the current study. Results and conclusions. Cognitive flexibility was found to be associated with P3a latency. Children who performed faster in cognitive flexibility tasks had also faster P3a responses. Working memory and inhibition were not associated with P3a latency. The results of the study partially support the hypothesis that faster P3a responses reflect more mature executive functioning. None of the studied executive functions was related to P3a amplitude. According to the study, differences in executive functions are not associated with the magnitude of distraction caused by novel sounds.