Intracranial study of speech-elicited activity on the human posterolateral superior temporal gyrus

Mitchell Steinschneider, Kirill V. Nourski, Hiroto Kawasaki, Hiroyuki Oya, John F. Brugge, Matthew A. Howard

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

77 Scopus citations


To clarify speech-elicited response patterns within auditory-responsive cortex of the posterolateral superior temporal (PLST) gyrus, time-frequency analyses of event-related band power in the high gamma frequency range (75-175 Hz) were performed on the electrocorticograms recorded from high-density subdural grid electrodes in 8 patients undergoing evaluation for medically intractable epilepsy. Stimuli were 6 stop consonant-vowel (CV) syllables that varied in their consonant place of articulation (POA) and voice onset time (VOT). Initial augmentation was maximal over several centimeters of PLST, lasted about 400 ms, and was often followed by suppression and a local outward expansion of activation. Maximal gamma power overlapped either the Nα or Pβ deflections of the average evoked potential (AEP). Correlations were observed between the relative magnitudes of gamma band responses elicited by unvoiced stop CV syllables (/pa/, /ka/, /ta/) and their corresponding voiced stop CV syllables (/ba/, /ga/, /da/), as well as by the VOT of the stimuli. VOT was also represented in the temporal patterns of the AEP. These findings, obtained in the passive awake state, indicate that PLST discriminates acoustic features associated with POA and VOT and serve as a benchmark upon which task-related speech activity can be compared.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2332-2347
Number of pages16
JournalCerebral Cortex
Issue number10
StatePublished - Oct 2011


  • Average evoked potentials
  • Electrocorticogram
  • Gamma oscillations
  • Place of articulation
  • Voice onset time

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cognitive Neuroscience
  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience


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