Nikjeh, Dee A; Lister, Jennifer J; Frisch, Stefan A
Cortical auditory evoked potentials of instrumental musicians suggest that music expertise modifies pitch processing, yet less is known about vocal musicians. Mismatch negativity (MMN) to pitch deviances and difference limen for frequency (DLF) were examined among 61 young adult women, including 20 vocalists, 21 instrumentalists, and 20 nonmusicians. Stimuli were harmonic tone complexes from the mid-female vocal range (C4-G4). MMN was elicited by multideviant paradigm. DLF was obtained by an adaptive psychophysical paradigm. Musicians detected pitch changes earlier and DLFs were 50% smaller than nonmusicians. Both vocal and instrumental musicians possess superior sensory-memory representations for acoustic parameters. Vocal musicians with instrumental training appear to have an auditory neural advantage over instrumental or vocal only musicians. An incidental finding reveals P3a as a sensitive index of music expertise.
Hutchins, Sean; Peretz, Isabelle
We tested whether congenital amusics, who exhibit pitch perception deficits, nevertheless adjust the pitch of their voice in response to a sudden pitch shift applied to vocal feedback. Nine amusics and matched controls imitated their own previously-recorded speech or singing, while the online feedback they received was shifted mid-utterance by 25…
Belyk, Michel; Pfordresher, Peter Q; Liotti, Mario; Brown, Steven
Vocal imitation is a phenotype that is unique to humans among all primate species, and so an understanding of its neural basis is critical in explaining the emergence of both speech and song in human evolution. Two principal neural models of vocal imitation have emerged from a consideration of nonhuman animals. One hypothesis suggests that putative mirror neurons in the inferior frontal gyrus pars opercularis of Broca's area may be important for imitation. An alternative hypothesis derived from the study of songbirds suggests that the corticostriate motor pathway performs sensorimotor processes that are specific to vocal imitation. Using fMRI with a sparse event-related sampling design, we investigated the neural basis of vocal imitation in humans by comparing imitative vocal production of pitch sequences with both nonimitative vocal production and pitch discrimination. The strongest difference between these tasks was found in the putamen bilaterally, providing a striking parallel to the role of the analogous region in songbirds. Other areas preferentially activated during imitation included the orofacial motor cortex, Rolandic operculum, and SMA, which together outline the corticostriate motor loop. No differences were seen in the inferior frontal gyrus. The corticostriate system thus appears to be the central pathway for vocal imitation in humans, as predicted from an analogy with songbirds.
Boltz, Marilyn G
Two experiments examined the ability to remember the vocal tempo and pitch of different individuals, and the way this information is encoded into the cognitive system. In both studies, participants engaged in an initial familiarisation phase while attending was systematically directed towards different aspects of speakers' voices. Afterwards, they received a tempo or pitch recognition task. Experiment 1 showed that tempo and pitch are both incidentally encoded into memory at levels comparable to intentional learning, and no performance deficit occurs with divided attending. Experiment 2 examined the ability to recognise pitch or tempo when the two dimensions co-varied and found that the presence of one influenced the other: performance was best when both dimensions were positively correlated with one another. As a set, these findings indicate that pitch and tempo are automatically processed in a holistic, integral fashion [Garner, W. R. (1974). The processing of information and structure. Potomac, MD: Erlbaum.] which has a number of cognitive implications.
Full Text Available Here we present evidence that native speakers of a tone language, in which pitch contributes to word meaning, are impaired in the discrimination of falling pitches in tone sequences, as compared to speakers of a non-tone language. Both groups were presented with monotonic and isochronous sequences of five tones (i.e., constant pitch and intertone interval. They were required to detect when the fourth tone was displaced in pitch or time. While speakers of a tone language performed more poorly in the detection of downward pitch changes, they did not differ from non-tone language speakers in their perception of upward pitch changes or in their perception of subtle time changes. Moreover, this impairment cannot be attributed to low musical aptitude since the impairment remains unchanged when individual differences in musical pitch-based processing is taken into account. Thus, the impairment appears highly specific and may reflect the influence of statistical regularities of tone languages.
Santurette, Sébastien; de Kérangal, Mathilde le Gal; Joshi, Suyash Narendra
Performance in pitch discrimination tasks is limited by variability intrinsic to listeners which may arise from peripheral auditory coding limitations or more central noise sources. The present study aimed at quantifying such “internal noise” by estimating the amount of harmonic roving required...... to impair pitch discrimination performance. Fundamental-frequency difference limens (F0DLs) were obtained in normal-hearing listeners with and without musical training for complex tones filtered between 1.5 and 3.5 kHz with F0s of 300 Hz (resolved harmonics) and 75 Hz (unresolved harmonics). The harmonicity...... that could be used to quantify the internal noise and provide strong constraints for physiologically inspired models of pitch perception....
Jiang, Cunmei; Lim, Vanessa K.; Wang, Hang; Hamm, Jeff P.
Music processing is influenced by pitch perception and memory. Additionally these features interact, with pitch memory performance decreasing as the perceived distance between two pitches decreases. This study examined whether or not the difficulty of pitch discrimination influences pitch retention by testing individuals with congenital amusia. Pitch discrimination difficulty was equated by determining an individual's threshold with a two down one up staircase procedure and using this to crea...
Behroozmand, Roozbeh; Ibrahim, Nadine; Korzyukov, Oleg; Robin, Donald A.; Larson, Charles R.
The ability to process auditory feedback for vocal pitch control is crucial during speaking and singing. Previous studies have suggested that musicians with absolute pitch (AP) develop specialized left-hemisphere mechanisms for pitch processing. The present study adopted an auditory feedback pitch perturbation paradigm combined with ERP recordings to test the hypothesis whether the neural mechanisms of the left-hemisphere enhance vocal pitch error detection and control in AP musicians compared with relative pitch (RP) musicians and non-musicians (NM). Results showed a stronger N1 response to pitch-shifted voice feedback in the right-hemisphere for both AP and RP musicians compared with the NM group. However, the left-hemisphere P2 component activation was greater in AP and RP musicians compared with NMs and also for the AP compared with RP musicians. The NM group was slower in generating compensatory vocal reactions to feedback pitch perturbation compared with musicians, and they failed to re-adjust their vocal pitch after the feedback perturbation was removed. These findings suggest that in the earlier stages of cortical neural processing, the right hemisphere is more active in musicians for detecting pitch changes in voice feedback. In the later stages, the left-hemisphere is more active during the processing of auditory feedback for vocal motor control and seems to involve specialized mechanisms that facilitate pitch processing in the AP compared with RP musicians. These findings indicate that the left hemisphere mechanisms of AP ability are associated with improved auditory feedback pitch processing during vocal pitch control in tasks such as speaking or singing. PMID:24355545
Carcagno, Samuele; Plack, Christopher J.
Practice can lead to dramatic improvements in the discrimination of auditory stimuli. In this study, we investigated changes of the frequency-following response (FFR), a subcortical component of the auditory evoked potentials, after a period of pitch discrimination training. Twenty-seven adult listeners were trained for 10 h on a pitch discrimination task using one of three different complex tone stimuli. One had a static pitch contour, one had a rising pitch contour, and one had a falling pi...
Jiang, Cunmei; Lim, Vanessa K; Wang, Hang; Hamm, Jeff P
Music processing is influenced by pitch perception and memory. Additionally these features interact, with pitch memory performance decreasing as the perceived distance between two pitches decreases. This study examined whether or not the difficulty of pitch discrimination influences pitch retention by testing individuals with congenital amusia. Pitch discrimination difficulty was equated by determining an individual's threshold with a two down one up staircase procedure and using this to create conditions where two pitches (the standard and the comparison tones) differed by 1x, 2x, and 3x the threshold setting. For comparison with the literature a condition that employed a constant pitch difference of four semitones was also included. The results showed that pitch memory performance improved as the discrimination between the standard and the comparison tones was made easier for both amusic and control groups, and more importantly, that amusics did not show any pitch retention deficits when the discrimination difficulty was equated. In contrast, consistent with previous literature, amusics performed worse than controls when the physical pitch distance was held constant at four semitones. This impaired performance has been interpreted as evidence for pitch memory impairment in the past. However, employing a constant pitch distance always makes the difference closer to the discrimination threshold for the amusic group than for the control group. Therefore, reduced performance in this condition may simply reflect differences in the perceptual difficulty of the discrimination. The findings indicate the importance of equating the discrimination difficulty when investigating memory.
Full Text Available Music processing is influenced by pitch perception and memory. Additionally these features interact, with pitch memory performance decreasing as the perceived distance between two pitches decreases. This study examined whether or not the difficulty of pitch discrimination influences pitch retention by testing individuals with congenital amusia. Pitch discrimination difficulty was equated by determining an individual's threshold with a two down one up staircase procedure and using this to create conditions where two pitches (the standard and the comparison tones differed by 1x, 2x, and 3x the threshold setting. For comparison with the literature a condition that employed a constant pitch difference of four semitones was also included. The results showed that pitch memory performance improved as the discrimination between the standard and the comparison tones was made easier for both amusic and control groups, and more importantly, that amusics did not show any pitch retention deficits when the discrimination difficulty was equated. In contrast, consistent with previous literature, amusics performed worse than controls when the physical pitch distance was held constant at four semitones. This impaired performance has been interpreted as evidence for pitch memory impairment in the past. However, employing a constant pitch distance always makes the difference closer to the discrimination threshold for the amusic group than for the control group. Therefore, reduced performance in this condition may simply reflect differences in the perceptual difficulty of the discrimination. The findings indicate the importance of equating the discrimination difficulty when investigating memory.
Sun, Yanan; Lu, Xuejing; Ho, Hao Tam; Thompson, William Forde
Research suggests that musical skills are associated with phonological abilities. To further investigate this association, we examined whether phonological impairments are evident in individuals with poor music abilities. Twenty individuals with congenital amusia and 20 matched controls were assessed on a pure-tone pitch discrimination task, a rhythm discrimination task, and four phonological tests. Amusic participants showed deficits in discriminating pitch and discriminating rhythmic patterns that involve a regular beat. At a group level, these individuals performed similarly to controls on all phonological tests. However, eight amusics with severe pitch impairment, as identified by the pitch discrimination task, exhibited significantly worse performance than all other participants in phonological awareness. A hierarchical regression analysis indicated that pitch discrimination thresholds predicted phonological awareness beyond that predicted by phonological short-term memory and rhythm discrimination. In contrast, our rhythm discrimination task did not predict phonological awareness beyond that predicted by pitch discrimination thresholds. These findings suggest that accurate pitch discrimination is critical for phonological processing. We propose that deficits in early-stage pitch discrimination may be associated with impaired phonological awareness and we discuss the shared role of pitch discrimination for processing music and speech.
Carcagno, Samuele; Plack, Christopher J.
Multiple-hour training on a pitch discrimination task dramatically decreases the threshold for detecting a pitch difference between two harmonic complexes. Here, we investigated the specificity of this perceptual learning with respect to the pitch and the resolvability of the trained harmonic complex, as well as its cortical electrophysiological correlates. We trained 24 participants for 12 h on a pitch discrimination task using one of four different harmonic complexes. The complexes differed...
Hutchins, Sean; Larrouy-Maestri, Pauline; Peretz, Isabelle
The inability to vocally match a pitch can be caused by poor pitch perception or by poor vocal-motor control. Although previous studies have tried to examine the relationship between pitch perception and vocal production, they have failed to control for the timbre of the target to be matched. In the present study, we compare pitch-matching accuracy with an unfamiliar instrument (the slider) and with the voice, designed such that the slider plays back recordings of the participant's own voice. We also measured pitch accuracy in singing a familiar melody ("Happy Birthday") to assess the relationship between single-pitch-matching tasks and melodic singing. Our results showed that participants (all nonmusicians) were significantly better at matching recordings of their own voices with the slider than with their voice, indicating that vocal-motor control is an important limiting factor on singing ability. We also found significant correlations between the ability to sing a melody in tune and vocal pitch matching, but not pitch matching on the slider. Better melodic singers also tended to have higher quality voices (as measured by acoustic variables). These results provide important evidence about the role of vocal-motor control in poor singing ability and demonstrate that single-pitch-matching tasks can be useful in measuring general singing abilities.
Full Text Available Forty-four participants were asked to sing moderate, high, and low pitches while their faces were photographed. In a two-alternative forced choice task, independent judges selected the high-pitch faces as more friendly than the low-pitch faces. When photographs were cropped to show only the eye region, judges still rated the high-pitch faces friendlier than the low-pitch faces. These results are consistent with prior research showing that vocal pitch height is used to signal aggression (low pitch or appeasement (high pitch. An analysis of the facial features shows a strong correlation between eyebrow position and sung pitch—consistent with the role of eyebrows in signaling aggression and appeasement. Overall, the results are consistent with an inter-modal linkage between vocal and facial expressions.
Carcagno, Samuele; Plack, Christopher J
Multiple-hour training on a pitch discrimination task dramatically decreases the threshold for detecting a pitch difference between two harmonic complexes. Here, we investigated the specificity of this perceptual learning with respect to the pitch and the resolvability of the trained harmonic complex, as well as its cortical electrophysiological correlates. We trained 24 participants for 12 h on a pitch discrimination task using one of four different harmonic complexes. The complexes differed in pitch and/or spectral resolvability of their components by the cochlea, but were filtered into the same spectral region. Cortical-evoked potentials and a behavioral measure of pitch discrimination were assessed before and after training for all the four complexes. The change in these measures was compared to that of two control groups: one trained on a level discrimination task and one without any training. The behavioral results showed that learning was partly specific to both pitch and resolvability. Training with a resolved-harmonic complex improved pitch discrimination for resolved complexes more than training with an unresolved complex. However, we did not find evidence that training with an unresolved complex leads to specific learning for unresolved complexes. Training affected the P2 component of the cortical-evoked potentials, as well as a later component (250-400 ms). No significant changes were found on the mismatch negativity (MMN) component, although a separate experiment showed that this measure was sensitive to pitch changes equivalent to the pitch discriminability changes induced by training. This result suggests that pitch discrimination training affects processes not measured by the MMN, for example, processes higher in level or parallel to those involved in MMN generation.
Carcagno, Samuele; Plack, Christopher J
Practice can lead to dramatic improvements in the discrimination of auditory stimuli. In this study, we investigated changes of the frequency-following response (FFR), a subcortical component of the auditory evoked potentials, after a period of pitch discrimination training. Twenty-seven adult listeners were trained for 10 h on a pitch discrimination task using one of three different complex tone stimuli. One had a static pitch contour, one had a rising pitch contour, and one had a falling pitch contour. Behavioral measures of pitch discrimination and FFRs for all the stimuli were measured before and after the training phase for these participants, as well as for an untrained control group (n = 12). Trained participants showed significant improvements in pitch discrimination compared to the control group for all three trained stimuli. These improvements were partly specific for stimuli with the same pitch modulation (dynamic vs. static) and with the same pitch trajectory (rising vs. falling) as the trained stimulus. Also, the robustness of FFR neural phase locking to the sound envelope increased significantly more in trained participants compared to the control group for the static and rising contour, but not for the falling contour. Changes in FFR strength were partly specific for stimuli with the same pitch modulation (dynamic vs. static) of the trained stimulus. Changes in FFR strength, however, were not specific for stimuli with the same pitch trajectory (rising vs. falling) as the trained stimulus. These findings indicate that even relatively low-level processes in the mature auditory system are subject to experience-related change.
Williamson, Victoria Jane; Stewart, Lauren
Congenital amusia is a disorder that affects the perception and production of music. While amusia has been associated with deficits in pitch discrimination, several reports suggest that memory deficits also play a role. The present study investigated short-term memory span for pitch-based and verbal information in 14 individuals with amusia and matched controls. Analogous adaptive-tracking procedures were used to generate tone and digit spans using stimuli that exceeded psychophysically measured pitch perception thresholds. Individuals with amusia had significantly smaller tone spans, whereas their digits spans were a similar size to those of controls. An automated operation span task was used to determine working memory capacity. Working memory deficits were seen in only a small subgroup of individuals with amusia. These findings support the existence of a pitch-specific component within short-term memory and suggest that congenital amusia is more than a disorder of fine-grained pitch discrimination.
Whiteford, Kelly L; Oxenham, Andrew J
Congenital amusia is currently thought to be a life-long neurogenetic disorder in music perception, impervious to training in pitch or melody discrimination. This study provides an explicit test of whether amusic deficits can be reduced with training. Twenty amusics and 20 matched controls participated in four sessions of psychophysical training involving either pure-tone (500 Hz) pitch discrimination or a control task of lateralization (interaural level differences for bandpass white noise). Pure-tone pitch discrimination at low, medium, and high frequencies (500, 2000, and 8000 Hz) was measured before and after training (pretest and posttest) to determine the specificity of learning. Melody discrimination was also assessed before and after training using the full Montreal Battery of Evaluation of Amusia, the most widely used standardized test to diagnose amusia. Amusics performed more poorly than controls in pitch but not localization discrimination, but both groups improved with practice on the trained stimuli. Learning was broad, occurring across all three frequencies and melody discrimination for all groups, including those who trained on the non-pitch control task. Following training, 11 of 20 amusics no longer met the global diagnostic criteria for amusia. A separate group of untrained controls (n = 20), who also completed melody discrimination and pretest, improved by an equal amount as trained controls on all measures, suggesting that the bulk of learning for the control group occurred very rapidly from the pretest. Thirty-one trained participants (13 amusics) returned one year later to assess long-term maintenance of pitch and melody discrimination. On average, there was no change in performance between posttest and one-year follow-up, demonstrating that improvements on pitch- and melody-related tasks in amusics and controls can be maintained. The findings indicate that amusia is not always a life-long deficit when using the current standard
Latinus, Marianne; Taylor, Margot J
Gender is salient, socially critical information obtained from faces and voices, yet the brain processes underlying gender discrimination have not been well studied. We investigated neural correlates of gender processing of voices in two ERP studies. In the first, ERP differences were seen between female and male voices starting at 87 ms, in both spatial-temporal and peak analyses, particularly the fronto-central N1 and P2. As pitch differences may drive gender differences, the second study used normal, high- and low-pitch voices. The results of these studies suggested that differences in pitch produced early effects (27-63 ms). Gender effects were seen on N1 (120 ms) with implicit pitch processing (study 1), but were not seen with manipulations of pitch (study 2), demonstrating that N1 was modulated by attention. P2 (between 170 and 230 ms) discriminated male from female voices, independent of pitch. Thus, these data show that there are two stages in voice gender processing; a very early pitch or frequency discrimination and a later more accurate determination of gender at the P2 latency.
Liu, Ying; Hu, Huijing; Jones, Jeffery A; Guo, Zhiqiang; Li, Weifeng; Chen, Xi; Liu, Peng; Liu, Hanjun
Speakers rapidly adjust their ongoing vocal productions to compensate for errors they hear in their auditory feedback. It is currently unclear what role attention plays in these vocal compensations. This event-related potential (ERP) study examined the influence of selective and divided attention on the vocal and cortical responses to pitch errors heard in auditory feedback regarding ongoing vocalisations. During the production of a sustained vowel, participants briefly heard their vocal pitch shifted up two semitones while they actively attended to auditory or visual events (selective attention), or both auditory and visual events (divided attention), or were not told to attend to either modality (control condition). The behavioral results showed that attending to the pitch perturbations elicited larger vocal compensations than attending to the visual stimuli. Moreover, ERPs were likewise sensitive to the attentional manipulations: P2 responses to pitch perturbations were larger when participants attended to the auditory stimuli compared to when they attended to the visual stimuli, and compared to when they were not explicitly told to attend to either the visual or auditory stimuli. By contrast, dividing attention between the auditory and visual modalities caused suppressed P2 responses relative to all the other conditions and caused enhanced N1 responses relative to the control condition. These findings provide strong evidence for the influence of attention on the mechanisms underlying the auditory-vocal integration in the processing of pitch feedback errors. In addition, selective attention and divided attention appear to modulate the neurobehavioral processing of pitch feedback errors in different ways. © 2015 Federation of European Neuroscience Societies and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.
Full Text Available Introduction Enhanced auditory perception in musicians is likely to result from auditory perceptual learning during several years of training and practice. Many studies have focused on biological processing of auditory stimuli among musicians. However, there is a lack of literature on temporal resolution and active auditory discrimination skills in vocal musicians. Objective The aim of the present study is to assess temporal resolution and active auditory discrimination skill in vocal musicians. Method The study participants included 15 vocal musicians with a minimum professional experience of 5 years of music exposure, within the age range of 20 to 30 years old, as the experimental group, while 15 age-matched non-musicians served as the control group. We used duration discrimination using pure-tones, pulse-train duration discrimination, and gap detection threshold tasks to assess temporal processing skills in both groups. Similarly, we assessed active auditory discrimination skill in both groups using Differential Limen of Frequency (DLF. All tasks were done using MATLab software installed in a personal computer at 40dBSL with maximum likelihood procedure. The collected data were analyzed using SPSS (version 17.0. Result Descriptive statistics showed better threshold for vocal musicians compared with non-musicians for all tasks. Further, independent t-test showed that vocal musicians performed significantly better compared with non-musicians on duration discrimination using pure tone, pulse train duration discrimination, gap detection threshold, and differential limen of frequency. Conclusion The present study showed enhanced temporal resolution ability and better (lower active discrimination threshold in vocal musicians in comparison to non-musicians.
Abramson, Maria Kulick; Lloyd, Peter J
There is a critical need for tests of auditory discrimination for young children as this skill plays a fundamental role in the development of speaking, prereading, reading, language, and more complex auditory processes. Frequency discrimination is important with regard to basic sensory processing affecting phonological processing, dyslexia, measurements of intelligence, auditory memory, Asperger syndrome, and specific language impairment. This study was performed to determine the clinical feasibility of the Pitch Discrimination Test (PDT) to screen the preschool child's ability to discriminate some of the acoustic demands of speech perception, primarily pitch discrimination, without linguistic content. The PDT used brief speech frequency tones to gather normative data from preschool children aged 3 to 5 yrs. A cross-sectional study was used to gather data regarding the pitch discrimination abilities of a sample of typically developing preschool children, between 3 and 5 yrs of age. The PDT consists of ten trials using two pure tones of 100-msec duration each, and was administered in an AA or AB forced-choice response format. Data from 90 typically developing preschool children between the ages of 3 and 5 yrs were used to provide normative data. Nonparametric Mann-Whitney U-testing was used to examine the effects of age as a continuous variable on pitch discrimination. The Kruskal-Wallis test was used to determine the significance of age on performance on the PDT. Spearman rank was used to determine the correlation of age and performance on the PDT. Pitch discrimination of brief tones improved significantly from age 3 yrs to age 4 yrs, as well as from age 3 yrs to the age 4- and 5-yrs group. Results indicated that between ages 3 and 4 yrs, children's auditory discrimination of pitch improved on the PDT. The data showed that children can be screened for auditory discrimination of pitch beginning with age 4 yrs. The PDT proved to be a time efficient, feasible tool for
Micheyl, Christophe; Delhommeau, Karine; Perrot, Xavier; Oxenham, Andrew J
This study compared the influence of musical and psychoacoustical training on auditory pitch discrimination abilities. In a first experiment, pitch discrimination thresholds for pure and complex tones were measured in 30 classical musicians and 30 non-musicians, none of whom had prior psychoacoustical training. The non-musicians' mean thresholds were more than six times larger than those of the classical musicians initially, and still about four times larger after 2h of training using an adaptive two-interval forced-choice procedure; this difference is two to three times larger than suggested by previous studies. The musicians' thresholds were close to those measured in earlier psychoacoustical studies using highly trained listeners, and showed little improvement with training; this suggests that classical musical training can lead to optimal or nearly optimal pitch discrimination performance. A second experiment was performed to determine how much additional training was required for the non-musicians to obtain thresholds as low as those of the classical musicians from experiment 1. Eight new non-musicians with no prior training practiced the frequency discrimination task for a total of 14 h. It took between 4 and 8h of training for their thresholds to become as small as those measured in the classical musicians from experiment 1. These findings supplement and qualify earlier data in the literature regarding the respective influence of musical and psychoacoustical training on pitch discrimination performance.
Wang, Ting; Lee, Yong-Cheol
This study reports a finding about vocal expressions of emotion in Mandarin Chinese. Production and perception experiments used the same tone and mixed tone sequences to test whether pitch variation is restricted due to the presence of lexical tones. Results showed that the restriction of pitch variation occurred in all high level tone sequences (tone 1 group) with the expression of happiness but did not happen for other dynamic tone groups. However, perception analysis revealed that all the emotions in every tone group received high identification rates; this indicates that listeners used other cues for encoding happiness in the tone 1 group. This study demonstrates that the restriction of pitch variation does not affect the perception of vocal emotions.
Peretz, Isabelle; Ayotte, Julie; Zatorre, Robert J; Mehler, Jacques; Ahad, Pierre; Penhune, Virginia B; Jutras, Benoît
We report the first documented case of congenital amusia. This disorder refers to a musical disability that cannot be explained by prior brain lesion, hearing loss, cognitive deficits, socioaffective disturbance, or lack of environmental stimulation. This musical impairment is diagnosed in a middle-aged woman, hereafter referred to as Monica, who lacks most basic musical abilities, including melodic discrimination and recognition, despite normal audiometry and above-average intellectual, memory, and language skills. The results of psychophysical tests show that Monica has severe difficulties with detecting pitch changes. The data suggest that music-processing difficulties may result from problems in fine-grained discrimination of pitch, much in the same way as many language-processing difficulties arise from deficiencies in auditory temporal resolution.
Düring, Daniel N; Knörlein, Benjamin J; Elemans, Coen P H
, forces and torques exerted on, and motion of the syringeal skeleton during song. Here, we present a novel marker-based 3D stereoscopic imaging technique to reconstruct 3D motion of servo-controlled actuation of syringeal muscle insertions sites in vitro and focus on two muscles controlling sound pitch......The biomechanics of sound production forms an integral part of the neuromechanical control loop of avian vocal motor control. However, we critically lack quantification of basic biomechanical parameters describing the vocal organ, the syrinx, such as material properties of syringeal elements...... motion and forces, acoustic effects of muscle recruitment, and calibration of computational birdsong models, enabling experimental access to the entire neuromechanical control loop of vocal motor control....
Saxton, Tamsin K; Mackey, Lauren L; McCarty, Kristofor; Neave, Nick
The traditional assumption within the research literature on human sexually dimorphic traits has been that many sex differences have arisen from intersexual selection. More recently, however, there has been a shift toward the idea that many male features, including male lower-pitched voices and male beard growth, might have arisen predominantly through intrasexual selection: that is, to serve the purpose of male-male competition instead of mate attraction. In this study, using a unique set of video stimuli, we measured people's perceptions of the dominance and attractiveness of men who differ both in terms of voice pitch (4 levels from lower to higher pitched) and beard growth (4 levels from clean shaven to a month's hair growth). We found a nonlinear relationship between lower pitch and increased attractiveness; men's vocal attractiveness peaked at around 96 Hz. Beard growth had equivocal effects on attractiveness judgments. In contrast, perceptions of men's dominance simply increased with increasing masculinity (i.e., with lower-pitched voices and greater beard growth). Together, these results suggest that the optimal level of physical masculinity might differ depending on whether the outcome is social dominance or mate attraction. These dual selection pressures might maintain some of the documented variability in male physical and behavioral masculinity that we see today.
Düring, Daniel N; Knörlein, Benjamin J; Elemans, Coen P H
, forces and torques exerted on, and motion of the syringeal skeleton during song. Here, we present a novel marker-based 3D stereoscopic imaging technique to reconstruct 3D motion of servo-controlled actuation of syringeal muscle insertions sites in vitro and focus on two muscles controlling sound pitch...... to musculus syringealis ventralis (VS) shortening is intrinsically constraint at maximally 12% strain. Using these values we predict sound pitch to range from 350-800 Hz by VS modulation, corresponding well to previous observations. The presented methodology allows for quantification of syringeal skeleton...... motion and forces, acoustic effects of muscle recruitment, and calibration of computational birdsong models, enabling experimental access to the entire neuromechanical control loop of vocal motor control....
Iao, Lai-Sang; Wippich, Anna; Lam, Yu Hin
Individuals with Autism Spectrum Conditions (ASC) are widely suggested to show enhanced perceptual discrimination but inconsistent findings have been reported for pitch discrimination. Given the high variability in ASC, this study investigated whether ASC traits were correlated with pitch discrimination in an undergraduate sample when musical and…
Xu, Dongxin; Gilkerson, Jill; Richards, Jeffrey; Yapanel, Umit; Gray, Sharmi
Early identification is crucial for young children with autism to access early intervention. The existing screens require either a parent-report questionnaire and/or direct observation by a trained practitioner. Although an automatic tool would benefit parents, clinicians and children, there is no automatic screening tool in clinical use. This study reports a fully automatic mechanism for autism detection/screening for young children. This is a direct extension of the LENA (Language ENvironment Analysis) system, which utilizes speech signal processing technology to analyze and monitor a child's natural language environment and the vocalizations/speech of the child. It is discovered that child vocalization composition contains rich discriminant information for autism detection. By applying pattern recognition and machine learning approaches to child vocalization composition data, accuracy rates of 85% to 90% in cross-validation tests for autism detection have been achieved at the equal-error-rate (EER) point on a data set with 34 children with autism, 30 language delayed children and 76 typically developing children. Due to its easy and automatic procedure, it is believed that this new tool can serve a significant role in childhood autism screening, especially in regards to population-based or universal screening.
Chen, Zhaocong; Wong, Francis C K; Jones, Jeffery A; Li, Weifeng; Liu, Peng; Chen, Xi; Liu, Hanjun
Speech perception and production are intimately linked. There is evidence that speech motor learning results in changes to auditory processing of speech. Whether speech motor control benefits from perceptual learning in speech, however, remains unclear. This event-related potential study investigated whether speech-sound learning can modulate the processing of feedback errors during vocal pitch regulation. Mandarin speakers were trained to perceive five Thai lexical tones while learning to associate pictures with spoken words over 5 days. Before and after training, participants produced sustained vowel sounds while they heard their vocal pitch feedback unexpectedly perturbed. As compared to the pre-training session, the magnitude of vocal compensation significantly decreased for the control group, but remained consistent for the trained group at the post-training session. However, the trained group had smaller and faster N1 responses to pitch perturbations and exhibited enhanced P2 responses that correlated significantly with their learning performance. These findings indicate that the cortical processing of vocal pitch regulation can be shaped by learning new speech-sound associations, suggesting that perceptual learning in speech can produce transfer effects to facilitating the neural mechanisms underlying the online monitoring of auditory feedback regarding vocal production.
Santurette, Sébastien; Bianchi, Federica; Dau, Torsten
content of the sound and whether the harmonics are resolved by the auditory frequency analysis operated by cochlear processing. F0DLs are also heavily influenced by the amount of musical training received by the listener and by the spectrotemporal auditory processing deficits that often accompany...... sensorineural hearing loss. This paper reviews the latest evidence for how musical training and hearing loss affect pitch discrimination performance, based on behavioral F0DL experiments with complex tones containing either resolved or unresolved harmonics, carried out in listeners with different degrees...... of hearing loss and musicianship. A better understanding of the interaction between these two factors is crucial to determine whether auditory training based on musical tasks or targeted towards specific auditory cues may be useful to hearing-impaired patients undergoing hearing rehabilitation....
Houtsma, A.J.M.; Smurzyński, J.
Four experiments are reported that deal with pitch perception of harmonic complex tones containing up to 11 successive harmonics. In particular, the question is raised whether the pitch percept of the missing fundamental is mediated only by low-order resolvable harmonics, or whether it can also be
Moreau, Patricia; Jolicoeur, Pierre; Peretz, Isabelle
Congenital amusia is a lifelong disorder characterized by a difficulty in perceiving and producing music despite normal intelligence and hearing. Behavioral data have indicated that it originates from a deficit in fine-grained pitch discrimination, and is expressed by the absence of a P3b event-related brain response for pitch differences smaller…
Bianchi, Federica; Hjortkjær, Jens; Santurette, Sébastien
superior temporal gyrus, Heschl's gyrus, insular cortex, inferior frontal gyrus, and in the inferior colliculus. Both subcortical and cortical neural responses predicted the individual pitch-discrimination performance. However, functional activity in the inferior colliculus correlated with differences...
Schneider, David M.; Woolley, Sarah M. N.
Many social animals including songbirds use communication vocalizations for individual recognition. The perception of vocalizations depends on the encoding of complex sounds by neurons in the ascending auditory system, each of which is tuned to a particular subset of acoustic features. Here, we examined how well the responses of single auditory neurons could be used to discriminate among bird songs and we compared discriminability to spectrotemporal tuning. We then used biologically realistic...
Møller, Cecilie; Højlund, Andreas; Bærentsen, Klaus B; Hansen, Niels Chr; Skewes, Joshua C; Vuust, Peter
Perception is fundamentally a multisensory experience. The principle of inverse effectiveness (PoIE) states how the multisensory gain is maximal when responses to the unisensory constituents of the stimuli are weak. It is one of the basic principles underlying multisensory processing of spatiotemporally corresponding crossmodal stimuli that are well established at behavioral as well as neural levels. It is not yet clear, however, how modality-specific stimulus features influence discrimination of subtle changes in a crossmodally corresponding feature belonging to another modality. Here, we tested the hypothesis that reliance on visual cues to pitch discrimination follow the PoIE at the interindividual level (i.e., varies with varying levels of auditory-only pitch discrimination abilities). Using an oddball pitch discrimination task, we measured the effect of varying visually perceived vertical position in participants exhibiting a wide range of pitch discrimination abilities (i.e., musicians and nonmusicians). Visual cues significantly enhanced pitch discrimination as measured by the sensitivity index d', and more so in the crossmodally congruent than incongruent condition. The magnitude of gain caused by compatible visual cues was associated with individual pitch discrimination thresholds, as predicted by the PoIE. This was not the case for the magnitude of the congruence effect, which was unrelated to individual pitch discrimination thresholds, indicating that the pitch-height association is robust to variations in auditory skills. Our findings shed light on individual differences in multisensory processing by suggesting that relevant multisensory information that crucially aids some perceivers' performance may be of less importance to others, depending on their unisensory abilities.
Goehring, Jenny L; Neff, Donna L; Baudhuin, Jacquelyn L; Hughes, Michelle L
This study compared pitch ranking, electrode discrimination, and electrically evoked compound action potential (ECAP) spatial excitation patterns for adjacent physical electrodes (PEs) and the corresponding dual electrodes (DEs) for newer-generation Cochlear devices (Cochlear Ltd., Macquarie, New South Wales, Australia). The first goal was to determine whether pitch ranking and electrode discrimination yield similar outcomes for PEs and DEs. The second goal was to determine if the amount of spatial separation among ECAP excitation patterns (separation index, Σ) between adjacent PEs and the PE-DE pairs can predict performance on the psychophysical tasks. Using non-adaptive procedures, 13 subjects completed pitch ranking and electrode discrimination for adjacent PEs and the corresponding PE-DE pairs (DE versus each flanking PE) from the basal, middle, and apical electrode regions. Analysis of d' scores indicated that pitch-ranking and electrode-discrimination scores were not significantly different, but rather produced similar levels of performance. As expected, accuracy was significantly better for the PE-PE comparison than either PE-DE comparison. Correlations of the psychophysical versus ECAP Σ measures were positive; however, not all test/region correlations were significant across the array. Thus, the ECAP separation index is not sensitive enough to predict performance on behavioral tasks of pitch ranking or electrode discrimination for adjacent PEs or corresponding DEs.
Schneider, David M; Woolley, Sarah M N
Many social animals including songbirds use communication vocalizations for individual recognition. The perception of vocalizations depends on the encoding of complex sounds by neurons in the ascending auditory system, each of which is tuned to a particular subset of acoustic features. Here, we examined how well the responses of single auditory neurons could be used to discriminate among bird songs and we compared discriminability to spectrotemporal tuning. We then used biologically realistic models of pooled neural responses to test whether the responses of groups of neurons discriminated among songs better than the responses of single neurons and whether discrimination by groups of neurons was related to spectrotemporal tuning and trial-to-trial response variability. The responses of single auditory midbrain neurons could be used to discriminate among vocalizations with a wide range of abilities, ranging from chance to 100%. The ability to discriminate among songs using single neuron responses was not correlated with spectrotemporal tuning. Pooling the responses of pairs of neurons generally led to better discrimination than the average of the two inputs and the most discriminating input. Pooling the responses of three to five single neurons continued to improve neural discrimination. The increase in discriminability was largest for groups of neurons with similar spectrotemporal tuning. Further, we found that groups of neurons with correlated spike trains achieved the largest gains in discriminability. We simulated neurons with varying levels of temporal precision and measured the discriminability of responses from single simulated neurons and groups of simulated neurons. Simulated neurons with biologically observed levels of temporal precision benefited more from pooling correlated inputs than did neurons with highly precise or imprecise spike trains. These findings suggest that pooling correlated neural responses with the levels of precision observed in the
Mackey, Lauren L.; McCarty, Kristofor; Neave, Nick
The traditional assumption within the research literature on human sexually dimorphic traits has been that many sex differences have arisen from intersexual selection. More recently, however, there has been a shift toward the idea that many male features, including male lower-pitched voices and male beard growth, might have arisen predominantly through intrasexual selection: that is, to serve the purpose of male–male competition instead of mate attraction. In this study, using a unique set of video stimuli, we measured people’s perceptions of the dominance and attractiveness of men who differ both in terms of voice pitch (4 levels from lower to higher pitched) and beard growth (4 levels from clean shaven to a month’s hair growth). We found a nonlinear relationship between lower pitch and increased attractiveness; men’s vocal attractiveness peaked at around 96 Hz. Beard growth had equivocal effects on attractiveness judgments. In contrast, perceptions of men’s dominance simply increased with increasing masculinity (i.e., with lower-pitched voices and greater beard growth). Together, these results suggest that the optimal level of physical masculinity might differ depending on whether the outcome is social dominance or mate attraction. These dual selection pressures might maintain some of the documented variability in male physical and behavioral masculinity that we see today. PMID:27004013
Bianchi, Federica; Santurette, Sébastien; Wendt, Dorothea
-musicians, suggesting similar peripheral frequency selectivity in the two groups of listeners. In a follow-up experiment, listeners’ pupil dilations were measured as an indicator of the required effort in performing the same pitch discrimination task for conditions of varying resolvability and task difficulty...... abilities in musicians are unlikely to be related to higher peripheral frequency selectivity and may suggest an enhanced pitch representation at more central stages of the auditory system in musically trained listeners....
Stanutz, Sandy; Wapnick, Joel; Burack, Jacob A
Pitch perception is enhanced among persons with autism. We extended this finding to memory for pitch and melody among school-aged children. The purpose of this study was to investigate pitch memory in musically untrained children with autism spectrum disorders, aged 7-13 years, and to compare it to that of age- and IQ-matched typically developing children. The children were required to discriminate isolated tones in two differing contexts as well to remember melodies after a period of 1 week. The tasks were designed to employ both short- and long-term memory for music. For the pitch discrimination task, the children first had to indicate whether two isolated tones were the same or different when the second was the same or had been altered to be 25, 35, or 45 cents sharp or flat. Second, the children discriminated the tones within the context of melody. They were asked whether two melodies were the same or different when the leading tone of the second melody was the same or had been altered to be 25, 35, or 45 cents sharp or flat. Long-term memory for melody was also investigated, as the children attempted to recall four different two-bar melodies after 1 week. The children with autism spectrum disorders demonstrated elevated pitch discrimination ability in the single-tone and melodic context as well as superior long-term memory for melody. Pitch memory correlated positively with scores on measures of nonverbal fluid reasoning ability. Superior short- and long-term pitch memory was found among children with autism spectrum disorders. The results indicate an aspect to cognitive functioning that may predict both enhanced nonverbal reasoning ability and atypical language development.
Bianchi, Federica; Fereczkowski, Michal; Zaar, Johannes
Physiological studies have shown that noise-induced sensorineural hearing loss (SNHL) enhances the amplitude of envelope coding in auditory-nerve fibers. As pitch coding of unresolved complex tones is assumed to rely on temporal envelope coding mechanisms, this study investigated...... for the RP condition. Overall, these findings suggest that both reduced cochlear compression and auditory filter broadening alter the envelope representation of unresolved complex tones, leading to changes in pitch-discrimination performance....... pitchdiscrimination performance in listeners with SNHL. Pitch-discrimination thresholds were obtained in 14 normal-hearing (NH) and 10 hearingimpaired (HI) listeners for sine-phase (SP) and random-phase (RP) unresolved complex tones. The HI listeners performed, on average, similarly as the NH listeners in the SP...
Bianchi, Federica; Fereczkowski, Michal; Zaar, Johannes
estimated in the same listeners. The estimated reduction of cochlear compression was significantly correlated with the increase in the F0DL ratio, while no correlation was found with filter bandwidth. The effects of degraded frequency selectivity and loss of compression were considered in a simplified......-discrimination performance in listeners with SNHL. Pitch-discrimination thresholds were obtained for 14 normal-hearing (NH) and 10 hearing-impaired (HI) listeners for sine-phase (SP) and random-phase (RP) complex tones. When all harmonics were unresolved, the HI listeners performed, on average, worse than NH listeners...... in the RP condition but similarly to NH listeners in the SP condition. The increase in pitch-discrimination performance for the SP relative to the RP condition (F0DL ratio) was significantly larger in the HI as compared with the NH listeners. Cochlear compression and auditory-filter bandwidths were...
Kishon-Rabin, L; Amir, O; Vexler, Y; Zaltz, Y
Musicians are typically considered to exhibit exceptional auditory skills. Only few studies, however, have substantiated this in basic psychoacoustic tasks. The purpose of the present investigation was to expand our knowledge on basic auditory abilities of musicians compared to non-musicians. Specific goals were: (1) to compare frequency discrimination thresholds (difference limen for frequency [DLF]) of non-musical pure tones in controlled groups of professional musicians and non-musicians; (2) to relate DLF performance to musical background; and (3) to compare DLF thresholds obtained with two threshold estimation procedures: 2- and 3- interval forced choice procedures (2IFC and 3IFC). Subjects were 16 professional musicians and 14 non-musicians. DLFs were obtained for three frequencies (0.25, 1 and 1.5 kHz) using the 3IFC adaptive procedure, and for one frequency (1 kHz) also using the 2IFC. Three threshold estimates were obtained for each frequency, procedure and subject. The results of the present study support five major findings: (a) mean DLFs for musicians were approximately half the values of the non-musicians; (b) significant learning for both groups during the three threshold estimations; (c) classical musicians performed better than those with contemporary musical background; (d) performance was influenced by years of musical experience; and (e) both groups showed better DLF in a 2IFC paradigm compared to the 3IFC. These data highlight the importance of short-term training on an auditory task, auditory memory and factors related to musical background (such as musical genre and years of experience) on auditory performance.
Royal, Isabelle; Vuvan, Dominique T.; Zendel, Benjamin Rich; Robitaille, Nicolas; Schönwiesner, Marc; Peretz, Isabelle
Pitch discrimination tasks typically engage the superior temporal gyrus and the right inferior frontal gyrus. It is currently unclear whether these regions are equally involved in the processing of incongruous notes in melodies, which requires the representation of musical structure (tonality) in addition to pitch discrimination. To this aim, 14 participants completed two tasks while undergoing functional magnetic resonance imaging, one in which they had to identify a pitch change in a series of non-melodic repeating tones and a second in which they had to identify an incongruous note in a tonal melody. In both tasks, the deviants activated the right superior temporal gyrus. A contrast between deviants in the melodic task and deviants in the non-melodic task (melodic > non-melodic) revealed additional activity in the right inferior parietal lobule. Activation in the inferior parietal lobule likely represents processes related to the maintenance of tonal pitch structure in working memory during pitch discrimination. PMID:27195523
Goehring, Jenny L.; Neff, Donna L.; Baudhuin, Jacquelyn L.; Hughes, Michelle L.
The first objective of this study was to determine whether adaptive pitch-ranking and electrode-discrimination tasks with cochlear-implant (CI) recipients produce similar results for perceiving intermediate “virtual-channel” pitch percepts using current steering. Previous studies have not examined both behavioral tasks in the same subjects with current steering. A second objective was to determine whether a physiological metric of spatial separation using the electrically evoked compound action potential spread-of-excitation (ECAP SOE) function could predict performance in the behavioral tasks. The metric was the separation index (Σ), defined as the difference in normalized amplitudes between two adjacent ECAP SOE functions, summed across all masker electrodes. Eleven CII or 90 K Advanced Bionics (Valencia, CA) recipients were tested using pairs of electrodes from the basal, middle, and apical portions of the electrode array. The behavioral results, expressed as d′, showed no significant differences across tasks. There was also no significant effect of electrode region for either task. ECAP Σ was not significantly correlated with pitch ranking or electrode discrimination for any of the electrode regions. Therefore, the ECAP separation index is not sensitive enough to predict perceptual resolution of virtual channels. PMID:25480063
Monson, Brian B.; Lotto, Andrew J.; Story, Brad H.
Humans routinely produce acoustical energy at frequencies above 6 kHz during vocalization, but this frequency range is often not represented in communication devices and speech perception research. Recent advancements toward high-definition (HD) voice and extended bandwidth hearing aids have increased the interest in the high frequencies. The potential perceptual information provided by high-frequency energy (HFE) is not well characterized. We found that humans can accomplish tasks of gender discrimination and vocal production mode discrimination (speech vs. singing) when presented with acoustic stimuli containing only HFE at both amplified and normal levels. Performance in these tasks was robust in the presence of low-frequency masking noise. No substantial learning effect was observed. Listeners also were able to identify the sung and spoken text (excerpts from “The Star-Spangled Banner”) with very few exposures. These results add to the increasing evidence that the high frequencies provide at least redundant information about the vocal signal, suggesting that its representation in communication devices (e.g., cell phones, hearing aids, and cochlear implants) and speech/voice synthesizers could improve these devices and benefit normal-hearing and hearing-impaired listeners. PMID:25400613
Josefa D. Martín-Santana
Full Text Available The aim of this study is to analyze how certain voice features of radio spokespersons and background music influence the advertising effectiveness of a radio spot from the cognitive, affective and conative perspectives. We used a 2 × 2 × 2 × 2 experimental design in 16 different radio programs in which an ad hoc radio spot was inserted during advertising block. This ad changed according to combinations of spokesperson's gender (male–female, vocal pitch (low–high and accent (local–standard. In addition to these independent factors, the effect of background music in advertisements was also tested and compared with those that only had words. 987 regular radio listeners comprised the sample that was exposed to the radio program we created. Based on the differences in the levels of effectiveness in the tested voice features, our results suggest that the choice of the voice in radio advertising is one of the most important decisions an advertiser faces. Furthermore, the findings show that the inclusion of music does not always imply greater effectiveness.
Bianchi, Federica; Santurette, Sébastien; Fereczkowski, Michal
Recent physiological studies in animals showed that noise-induced sensorineural hearing loss (SNHL) increased the amplitude of envelope coding in single auditory-nerve fibers. The present study investigated whether SNHL in human listeners was associated with enhanced temporal envelope coding...... resolvability. For the unresolved conditions, all five HI listeners performed as good as or better than NH listeners with matching musical experience. Two HI listeners showed lower amplitude-modulation detection thresholds than NH listeners for low modulation rates, and one of these listeners also showed a loss......, whether this enhancement affected pitch discrimination performance, and whether loss of compression following SNHL was a potential factor in envelope coding enhancement. Envelope processing was assessed in normal-hearing (NH) and hearing-impaired (HI) listeners in a behavioral amplitude...
Full Text Available This paper investigates the effectiveness of measures related to vocal tract characteristics in classifying normal and pathological speech. Unlike conventional approaches that mainly focus on features related to the vocal source, vocal tract characteristics are examined to determine if interaction effects between vocal folds and the vocal tract can be used to detect pathological speech. Especially, this paper examines features related to formant frequencies to see if vocal tract characteristics are affected by the nature of the vocal fold-related pathology. To test this hypothesis, stationary fragments of vowel /aa/ produced by 223 normal subjects, 472 vocal fold polyp subjects, and 195 unilateral vocal cord paralysis subjects are analyzed. Based on the acoustic-articulatory relationships, phonation for pathological subjects is found to be associated with measures correlated with a raised tongue body or an advanced tongue root. Vocal tract-related features are also found to be statistically significant from the Kruskal-Wallis test in distinguishing normal and pathological speech. Classification results demonstrate that combining the formant measurements with vocal fold-related features results in improved performance in differentiating vocal pathologies including vocal polyps and unilateral vocal cord paralysis, which suggests that measures related to vocal tract characteristics may provide additional information in diagnosing vocal disorders.
Miller, Nicola A; Gregory, Jennifer S; Aspden, Richard M; Stollery, Peter J; Gilbert, Fiona J
The shape of the vocal tract and associated structures (eg, tongue and velum) is complicated and varies according to development and function. This variability challenges interpretation of voice experiments. Quantifying differences between shapes and understanding how vocal structures move in relation to each other is difficult using traditional linear and angle measurements. With statistical shape models, shape can be characterized in terms of independent modes of variation. Here, we build an active shape model (ASM) to assess morphologic and pitch-related functional changes affecting vocal structures and the airway. Using a cross-sectional study design, we obtained six midsagittal magnetic resonance images from 10 healthy adults (five men and five women) at rest, while breathing out, and while listening to, and humming low and high notes. Eighty landmark points were chosen to define the shape of interest and an ASM was built using these (60) images. Principal component analysis was used to identify independent modes of variation, and statistical analysis was performed using one-way repeated-measures analysis of variance. Twenty modes of variation were identified with modes 1 and 2 accounting for half the total variance. Modes 1 and 9 were significantly associated with humming low and high notes (P structures, and airway. Mode 2 highlighted wide structural variations between subjects. This study highlights the potential of active shape modeling to advance understanding of factors underlying morphologic and pitch-related functional variations affecting vocal structures and the airway in health and disease. Copyright © 2014 The Voice Foundation. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Stanutz, Sandy; Wapnick, Joel; Burack, Jacob A.
Background: Pitch perception is enhanced among persons with autism. We extended this finding to memory for pitch and melody among school-aged children. Objective: The purpose of this study was to investigate pitch memory in musically untrained children with autism spectrum disorders, aged 7-13 years, and to compare it to that of age- and…
Van Puyvelde, Martine; Loots, Gerrit; Gillisjans, Lobcke; Pattyn, Nathalie; Quintana, Carmen
This study reports a cross-cultural comparison of the vocal pitch patterns of 15 Mexican Spanish-speaking and 15 Belgian Flemish-speaking dyads, recorded during 5min of free-play in a laboratory setting. Both cultures have a tradition of dyadic face-to-face interaction but differ in language origins (i.e., Romanic versus Germanic). In total, 374 Mexican and 558 Flemish vocal exchanges were identified, analyzed and compared for their incidence of tonal synchrony (harmonic/pentatonic series), non-tonal synchrony (with/without imitations) and pitch and/or interval imitations. The main findings revealed that dyads in both cultures rely on tonal synchrony using similar pitch ratios and timing patterns. However, there were significant differences in the infants' vocal pitch imitation behavior. Additional video-analyzes on the contingency patterns involved in pitch imitation showed a cross-cultural difference in the maternal selective reinforcement of pitch imitation. The results are interpreted with regard to linguistic, developmental and cultural aspects and the 'musilanguage' model. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Full Text Available The extent to which human speech perception evolved by taking advantage of predispositions and pre-existing features of vertebrate auditory and cognitive systems remains a central question in the evolution of speech. This paper reviews asymmetries in vowel perception, speaker voice recognition, and speaker normalization in non-human animals – topics that have not been thoroughly discussed in relation to the abilities of non-human animals, but are nonetheless important aspects of vocal perception. Throughout this paper we demonstrate that addressing these issues in non-human animals is relevant and worthwhile because many non-human animals must deal with similar issues in their natural environment. That is, they must also discriminate between similar-sounding vocalizations, determine signaler identity from vocalizations, and resolve signaler-dependent variation in vocalizations from conspecifics. Overall, we find that, although plausible, the current evidence is insufficiently strong to conclude that directional asymmetries in vowel perception are specific to humans, or that non-human animals can use voice characteristics to recognize human individuals. However, we do find some indication that non-human animals can normalize speaker differences. Accordingly, we identify avenues for future research that would greatly improve and advance our understanding of these topics.
Boltz, M G
The purpose of this research was to investigate a set of factors that may influence the perceived rate of an auditory event. In a paired-comparison task, subjects were presented with a set of music-like patterns that differed in their relative number of contour changes and in the magnitude of pitch skips (Experiment 1) as well as in the compatibility of rhythmic accent structure with the arrangement of pitch relations (Experiment 2) Results indicated that, relative to their standard referents, comparison melodies were judged to unfold more slowly when they displayed more changes in pitch direction, greater pitch distances, and an incompatible rhythmic accent structure. These findings are suggested to stem from an imputed velocity hypothesis, in which people overgeneralize certain invariant relations that typically occur between melodic and temporal accent structure within Western music.
Saxton, Tamsin K.; Mackey, Lauren L.; McCarty, Kristofor; Neave, Nick
The traditional assumption within the research literature on human sexually dimorphic traits has been that many sex differences have arisen from intersexual selection. More recently however, there has been a shift towards the idea that many male features, including for example male lower-pitched voices, and male beard growth, might have arisen predominantly through intrasexual selection: that is, to serve the purpose of male-male competition instead of mate attraction. In this study, using a ...
Gaudrain, Etienne; Başkent, Deniz
Perception of voice characteristics allows normal hearing listeners to identify the gender of a speaker, and to better segregate speakers from each other in cocktail party situations. This benefit is largely driven by the perception of two vocal characteristics of the speaker: The fundamental
Gaudrain, Etienne; Başkent, Deniz
Perception of voice characteristics allows normal hearing listeners to identify the gender of a speaker, and to better segregate speakers from each other in cocktail party situations. This benefit is largely driven by the perception of two vocal characteristics of the speaker: The fundamental frequency (F0) and the vocal-tract length (VTL). Previous studies have suggested that cochlear implant (CI) users have difficulties in perceiving these cues. The aim of the present study was to investigate possible causes for limited sensitivity to VTL differences in CI users. Different acoustic simulations of CI stimulation were implemented to characterize the role of spectral resolution on VTL, both in terms of number of channels and amount of channel interaction. The results indicate that with 12 channels, channel interaction caused by current spread is likely to prevent CI users from perceiving VTL differences typically found between male and female speakers.
Ikeda, Kazunari; Sekiguchi, Takahiro; Hayashi, Akiko
This study examined a notion that auditory discrimination is a requisite for attention-related modulation of the auditory brainstem response (ABR) during contralateral noise exposure. Given that the right ear was exposed continuously with white noise at an intensity of 60-80 dB sound pressure level, tone pips at 80 dB sound pressure level were delivered to the left ear through either single-stimulus or oddball procedures. Participants conducted reading (ignoring task) and counting target tones (attentive task) during stimulation. The oddball but not the single-stimulus procedures elicited task-related modulations in both early (ABR) and late (processing negativity) event-related potentials simultaneously. The elicitation of the attention-related ABR modulation during contralateral noise exposure is thus considered to require auditory discrimination and have the corticofugal nature evidently.
Li, Tianhao; Fu, Qian-Jie
(1) To investigate whether voice gender discrimination (VGD) could be a useful indicator of the spectral and temporal processing abilities of individual cochlear implant (CI) users; (2) To examine the relationship between VGD and speech recognition with CI when comparable acoustic cues are used for both perception processes. VGD was measured using two talker sets with different inter-gender fundamental frequencies (F(0)), as well as different acoustic CI simulations. Vowel and consonant recognition in quiet and noise were also measured and compared with VGD performance. Eleven postlingually deaf CI users. The results showed that (1) mean VGD performance differed for different stimulus sets, (2) VGD and speech recognition performance varied among individual CI users, and (3) individual VGD performance was significantly correlated with speech recognition performance under certain conditions. VGD measured with selected stimulus sets might be useful for assessing not only pitch-related perception, but also spectral and temporal processing by individual CI users. In addition to improvements in spectral resolution and modulation detection, the improvement in higher modulation frequency discrimination might be particularly important for CI users in noisy environments.
Full Text Available Bolinger, Ohala, Morton and others have established that vocal pitch height is perceived to be associated with social signals of dominance and submissiveness: higher vocal pitch is associated with submissiveness, whereas lower vocal pitch is associated with social dominance. An experiment was carried out to test this relationship in the perception of non-vocal melodies. Results show a parallel situation in music: higher-pitched melodies sound more submissive (less threatening than lower-pitched melodies.
Full Text Available Behavioral adaption to a changing environment is critical for an animal’s survival. How well the brain can modify its functional properties based on experience essentially defines the limits of behavioral adaptation. In adult animals the extent to which experience shapes brain function has not been fully explored. Moreover, the perceptual consequences of experience-induced changes in the brains of adults remain unknown. Here we show that the tonotopic map in the primary auditory cortex of adult rats living with low-level ambient noise underwent a dramatic reorganization. Behaviorally, chronic noise-exposure impaired fine, but not coarse pitch discrimination. When tested in a noisy environment, the noise-exposed rats performed as well as in a quiet environment whereas the control rats performed poorly. This suggests that noise-exposed animals had adapted to living in a noisy environment. Behavioral pattern analyses revealed that stress or distraction engendered by the noisy background could not account for the poor performance of the control rats in a noisy environment. A reorganized auditory map may therefore have served as the neural substrate for the consistent performance of the noise-exposed rats in a noisy environment.
Blumenrath, Sandra H.; Dabelsteen, Torben; Pedersen, Simon Boel
Discrimination between conspecifics is important in mediating social interactions between several individuals in a network environment. In great tits, Parus major, females readily distinguish between the songs of their mate and those of a stranger. The high degree of song sharing among neighbouring...... males, however, raises the question of whether females are also able to perceive differences between songs shared by their mate and a neighbour. The great tit is a socially monogamous, hole-nesting species with biparental care. Pair bond maintenance and coordination of the pair's reproductive efforts...... are important, and the female's ability to recognize her mate's song should therefore be adaptive. In a neighbour-mate discrimination playback experiment, we presented 13 incubating great tit females situated inside nestboxes with a song of their mate and the same song type from a neighbour. Each female...
Rendall, Drew; Kollias, Sophie; Ney, Christina; Lloyd, Peter
Key voice features-fundamental frequency (F0) and formant frequencies-can vary extensively between individuals. Much of the variation can be traced to differences in the size of the larynx and vocal-tract cavities, but whether these differences in turn simply reflect differences in speaker body size (i.e., neutral vocal allometry) remains unclear. Quantitative analyses were therefore undertaken to test the relationship between speaker body size and voice F0 and formant frequencies for human vowels. To test the taxonomic generality of the relationships, the same analyses were conducted on the vowel-like grunts of baboons, whose phylogenetic proximity to humans and similar vocal production biology and voice acoustic patterns recommend them for such comparative research. For adults of both species, males were larger than females and had lower mean voice F0 and formant frequencies. However, beyond this, F0 variation did not track body-size variation between the sexes in either species, nor within sexes in humans. In humans, formant variation correlated significantly with speaker height but only in males and not in females. Implications for general vocal allometry are discussed as are implications for speech origins theories, and challenges to them, related to laryngeal position and vocal tract length. .
Rendall, Drew; Owren, Michael J.; Weerts, Elise; Hienz, Robert D.
This study quantifies sex differences in the acoustic structure of vowel-like grunt vocalizations in baboons (Papio spp.) and tests the basic perceptual discriminability of these differences to baboon listeners. Acoustic analyses were performed on 1028 grunts recorded from 27 adult baboons (11 males and 16 females) in southern Africa, focusing specifically on the fundamental frequency (F0) and formant frequencies. The mean F0 and the mean frequencies of the first three formants were all significantly lower in males than they were in females, more dramatically so for F0. Experiments using standard psychophysical procedures subsequently tested the discriminability of adult male and adult female grunts. After learning to discriminate the grunt of one male from that of one female, five baboon subjects subsequently generalized this discrimination both to new call tokens from the same individuals and to grunts from novel males and females. These results are discussed in the context of both the possible vocal anatomical basis for sex differences in call structure and the potential perceptual mechanisms involved in their processing by listeners, particularly as these relate to analogous issues in human speech production and perception.
Terao, Yasuo; Mizuno, Tomoyuki; Shindoh, Mitsuko; Sakurai, Yasuhisa; Ugawa, Yoshikazu; Kobayashi, Shunsuke; Nagai, Chiyoko; Furubayashi, Toshiaki; Arai, Noritoshi; Okabe, Shingo; Mochizuki, Hitoshi; Hanajima, Ritsuko; Tsuji, Shouji
We describe the psychophysical features of vocal amusia in a professional tango singer caused by an infarction mainly involving the superior temporal cortex of the right hemisphere. The lesion also extended to the supramarginal gyrus, the posterior aspect of the postcentral gyrus and the posterior insula. She presented with impairment of musical perception that was especially pronounced in discriminating timbre and loudness but also in discriminating pitch, and a severely impaired ability to reproduce the pitch just presented. In contrast, language and motor disturbances were almost entirely absent. By comparing her pre- and post-stroke singing, we were able to show that her singing after the stroke lacked the fine control of the subtle stress and pitch changes that characterized her pre-stroke singing. Such impairment could not be explained by the impairment of pitch perception. The findings suggest that damage to the right temporoparietal cortex is enough to produce both perceptive and expressive deficits in music.
Demany, Laurent; Montandon, Gaspard; Semal, Catherine
A listener's ability to compare two sounds separated by a silent time interval T is limited by a sum of ``sensory noise'' and ``memory noise.'' The present work was intended to test a model according to which these two components of internal noise are independent and, for a given sensory continuum, the memory noise depends only on T. In three experiments using brief sounds (relative decline of d' beyond the optimal value of T should have been slower when pitch salience was low (large amount of sensory noise) than when pitch salience was high (small amount of sensory noise). However, this prediction was disproved in each of the three experiments. It was also found, when a ``roving'' procedure was used, that the optimal value of T was markedly shorter for very brief tone bursts (6 sine cycles) than for longer tone bursts (30 sine cycles).
Vasconcelos, Raquel O.; Fonseca, Paulo J.; Amorim, M. Clara P.; Ladich, Friedrich
Many fishes rely on their auditory skills to interpret crucial information about predators and prey, and to communicate intraspecifically. Few studies, however, have examined how complex natural sounds are perceived in fishes. We investigated the representation of conspecific mating and agonistic calls in the auditory system of the Lusitanian toadfish Halobatrachus didactylus, and analysed auditory responses to heterospecific signals from ecologically relevant species: a sympatric vocal fish (meagre Argyrosomus regius) and a potential predator (dolphin Tursiops truncatus). Using auditory evoked potential (AEP) recordings, we showed that both sexes can resolve fine features of conspecific calls. The toadfish auditory system was most sensitive to frequencies well represented in the conspecific vocalizations (namely the mating boatwhistle), and revealed a fine representation of duration and pulsed structure of agonistic and mating calls. Stimuli and corresponding AEP amplitudes were highly correlated, indicating an accurate encoding of amplitude modulation. Moreover, Lusitanian toadfish were able to detect T. truncatus foraging sounds and A. regius calls, although at higher amplitudes. We provide strong evidence that the auditory system of a vocal fish, lacking accessory hearing structures, is capable of resolving fine features of complex vocalizations that are probably important for intraspecific communication and other relevant stimuli from the auditory scene. PMID:20861044
Bianchi, Federica; Dau, Torsten; Santurette, Sébastien
-discrimination performance for NH listeners. It is unclear whether a comparable effect of musical training occurs for listeners whose sensory encoding of F0 is degraded. To address this question, F0 discrimination was investigated for three groups of listeners (14 young NH, 9 older NH and 10 HI listeners), each......Hearing-impaired (HI) listeners, as well as elderly listeners, typically have a reduced ability to discriminate the fundamental frequency (F0) of complex tones compared to young normal-hearing (NH) listeners. Several studies have shown that musical training, on the other hand, leads to improved F0...... including musicians and non-musicians, using complex tones that differed in harmonic content. Musical training significantly improved F0 discrimination for all groups of listeners, especially for complex tones containing low-numbered harmonics. In a second experiment, the sensitivity to temporal fine...
Agerkvist, Finn T.; Selamtzis, Andreas
frontend is used to measure the electroglottograph signal which reflects the opening and closing pattern of the vocal folds. The measurements were carried out for all four modes (Neutral, Curbing, Overdrive and Edge) for the vowel [a] in three different pitches: C3(131 Hz), G3 (196 Hz) and C4 (262Hz......The importance of the interaction between the acoustic impedance of the vocal tract with the flow across the vocal cords is well established. In this paper we are investigating the changes in vocal tract impedance when using the different modes of phonation according to Sadolin , going from...... the soft levels of the Neutral mode to the high levels of the fully ‘metallic’ Edge mode. The acoustic impedance of vocal tract as seen from the mouth opening is measured via a microphone placed close to the mouth when exciting the system with a volume velocity source . At the same time a Laryngograph...
Jones, Benedict C; Feinberg, David R; DeBruine, Lisa M; Little, Anthony C; Vukovic, Jovana
Most previous studies of vocal attractiveness have focused on preferences for physical characteristics of voices such as pitch. Here we examine the content of vocalizations in interaction with such physical traits, finding that vocal cues of social interest modulate the strength of men's preferences for raised pitch in women's voices. Men showed stronger preferences for raised pitch when judging the voices of women who appeared interested in the listener than when judging the voices of women ...
Lau, Bonnie K.
Pitch perception plays an important role in many complex auditory tasks including speech perception, music perception, and sound source segregation. Because of the protracted and extensive development of the human auditory cortex, pitch perception might be expected to mature, at least over the first few months of life. This dissertation investigates complex pitch perception in 3-month-olds, 7-month-olds and adults -- time points when the organization of the auditory pathway is distinctly different. Using an observer-based psychophysical procedure, a series of four studies were conducted to determine whether infants (1) discriminate the pitch of harmonic complex tones, (2) discriminate the pitch of unresolved harmonics, (3) discriminate the pitch of missing fundamental melodies, and (4) have comparable sensitivity to pitch and spectral changes as adult listeners. The stimuli used in these studies were harmonic complex tones, with energy missing at the fundamental frequency. Infants at both three and seven months of age discriminated the pitch of missing fundamental complexes composed of resolved and unresolved harmonics as well as missing fundamental melodies, demonstrating perception of complex pitch by three months of age. More surprisingly, infants in both age groups had lower pitch and spectral discrimination thresholds than adult listeners. Furthermore, no differences in performance on any of the tasks presented were observed between infants at three and seven months of age. These results suggest that subcortical processing is not only sufficient to support pitch perception prior to cortical maturation, but provides adult-like sensitivity to pitch by three months.
Smith, David R. R.
Whispered vowels, produced with no vocal fold vibration, lack the periodic temporal fine structure which in voiced vowels underlies the perceptual attribute of pitch (a salient auditory cue to speaker sex). Voiced vowels possess no temporal fine structure at very short durations (below two glottal cycles). The prediction was that speaker-sex discrimination performance for whispered and voiced vowels would be similar for very short durations but, as stimulus duration increases, voiced vowel pe...
He, Hao; Zhang, Wei-Dong
This study proposes that there are two types of sensorimotor mismapping in poor-pitch singing: erroneous mapping and no mapping. We created operational definitions for the two types of mismapping based on the precision of pitch-matching and predicted that in the two types of mismapping, phonation differs in terms of accuracy and the dependence on the articulation consistency between the target and the intended vocal action. The study aimed to test this hypothesis by examining the reliability and criterion-related validity of the operational definitions. A within-subject design was used in this study. Thirty-two participants identified as poor-pitch singers were instructed to vocally imitate pure tones and to imitate their own vocal recordings with the same articulation as self-targets and with different articulation from self-targets. Definitions of the types of mismapping were demonstrated to be reliable with the split-half approach and to have good criterion-related validity with findings that pitch-matching with no mapping was less accurate and more dependent on the articulation consistency between the target and the intended vocal action than pitch-matching with erroneous mapping was. Furthermore, the precision of pitch-matching was positively associated with its accuracy and its dependence on articulation consistency when mismapping was analyzed on a continuum. Additionally, the data indicated that the self-imitation advantage was a function of articulation consistency. Types of sensorimotor mismapping lead to pitch-matching that differs in accuracy and its dependence on the articulation consistency between the target and the intended vocal action. Additionally, articulation consistency produces the self-advantage. Copyright © 2017 The Voice Foundation. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Charles R Larson; Donald A Robin
The pitch-shift paradigm has become a widely used method for studying the role of voice pitch auditory feedback in voice control. This paradigm introduces small, brief pitch shifts in voice auditory feedback to vocalizing subjects. The perturbations trigger a reflexive mechanism that counteracts the change in pitch. The underlying mechanisms of the vocal responses are thought to reflect a negative feedback control system that is similar to constructs developed to explain other forms of motor ...
Behroozmand, Roozbeh; Korzyukov, Oleg; Larson, Charles R
The present study investigated the neural mechanisms of voice pitch control for different levels of harmonic complexity in the auditory feedback. Event-related potentials (ERPs) were recorded in response to+200 cents pitch perturbations in the auditory feedback of self-produced natural human vocalizations, complex and pure tone stimuli during active vocalization and passive listening conditions. During active vocal production, ERP amplitudes were largest in response to pitch shifts in the natural voice, moderately large for non-voice complex stimuli and smallest for the pure tones. However, during passive listening, neural responses were equally large for pitch shifts in voice and non-voice complex stimuli but still larger than that for pure tones. These findings suggest that pitch change detection is facilitated for spectrally rich sounds such as natural human voice and non-voice complex stimuli compared with pure tones. Vocalization-induced increase in neural responses for voice feedback suggests that sensory processing of naturally-produced complex sounds such as human voice is enhanced by means of motor-driven mechanisms (e.g. efference copies) during vocal production. This enhancement may enable the audio-vocal system to more effectively detect and correct for vocal errors in the feedback of natural human vocalizations to maintain an intended vocal output for speaking. Copyright Â© 2011 International Federation of Clinical Neurophysiology. Published by Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.
Hsieh, I-Hui; Saberi, Kourosh
How brief must a sound be before its pitch is no longer perceived? The uncertainty tradeoff between temporal and spectral resolution (Gabor's principle) limits the minimum duration required for accurate pitch identification or discrimination. Prior studies have reported that pitch can be extracted from sinusoidal pulses as brief as half a cycle. This finding has been used in a number of classic papers to develop models of pitch encoding. We have found that phase randomization, which eliminates timbre confounds, degrades this ability to chance, raising serious concerns over the foundation on which classic pitch models have been built. The current study investigated whether subthreshold pitch cues may still exist in partial-cycle pulses revealed through statistical integration in a time series containing multiple pulses. To this end, we measured frequency-discrimination thresholds in a two-interval forced-choice task for trains of partial-cycle random-phase tone pulses. We found that residual pitch cues exist in these pulses but discriminating them requires an order of magnitude (ten times) larger frequency difference than that reported previously, necessitating a re-evaluation of pitch models built on earlier findings. We also found that as pulse duration is decreased to less than two cycles its pitch becomes biased toward higher frequencies, consistent with predictions of an auto-correlation model of pitch extraction.
Williams, Peter Leslie; Overholt, Daniel
Pitch Fork is a prototype of an alternate, actuated digital musical instrument (DMI). It uses 5 infra-red and 4 piezoelectric sensors to control an additive synthesis engine. Iron bars are used as the physical point of contact in interaction with the aim of using this materials natural acoustic p...... properties as a control signal for aspects of the digitally produced sound. This choice of material was also chosen to affect player experience. Sensor readings are relayed to a Macbook via an Arduino Mega. Mappings and audio output signal is carried out with Pure Data Extended....
Stewart, Mary E.; Griffiths, Timothy D.; Grube, Manon
Enhanced basic perceptual discrimination has been reported for pitch in individuals with autism spectrum conditions. We test whether there is a correlational pattern of enhancement across the broader autism phenotype and whether this correlation occurs for the discrimination of pitch, time and loudness. Scores on the Autism-Spectrum Quotient…
Bradley, Caitlin E; McClung, Maureen R
Divergence in vocalizations can reduce gene flow by serving as a premating barrier during secondary contact between previously isolated populations. In primates, vocal divergence in long calls of separated populations has been documented, yet recognition of these differences by the respective populations has seldom been studied in the field. To investigate this issue, we studied populations of two subspecies of saddle-back tamarins (Saguinus fuscicollis nigrifrons and S. f. lagonotus) that are separated by the Amazon River in Peru. We recorded long calls of each subspecies and detected significant differences between the populations in the number of notes per call, duration of calls, and shifts in starting frequency of notes over the length of calls. In addition, a population of S. f. nigrifrons responded more overtly in measures of approach to playback of long calls of its own subspecies compared to long calls of S. f. lagonotus. These results are consistent with the hypothesis that allopatric divergence of long calls might contribute to reproductive isolation of these subspecies of saddle-back tamarins, which adds to growing evidence suggesting full species status for these taxa. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
... here Home » Health Info » Voice, Speech, and Language Vocal Fold Paralysis On this page: What is vocal fold ... Where can I get additional information? What is vocal fold paralysis? Structures involved in speech and voice production ...
Liu, Ying; Fan, Hao; Li, Jingting; Jones, Jeffery A; Liu, Peng; Zhang, Baofeng; Liu, Hanjun
When people hear unexpected perturbations in auditory feedback, they produce rapid compensatory adjustments of their vocal behavior. Recent evidence has shown enhanced vocal compensations and cortical event-related potentials (ERPs) in response to attended pitch feedback perturbations, suggesting that this reflex-like behavior is influenced by selective attention. Less is known, however, about auditory-motor integration for voice control during divided attention. The present cross-modal study investigated the behavioral and ERP correlates of auditory feedback control of vocal pitch production during divided attention. During the production of sustained vowels, 32 young adults were instructed to simultaneously attend to both pitch feedback perturbations they heard and flashing red lights they saw. The presentation rate of the visual stimuli was varied to produce a low, intermediate, and high attentional load. The behavioral results showed that the low-load condition elicited significantly smaller vocal compensations for pitch perturbations than the intermediate-load and high-load conditions. As well, the cortical processing of vocal pitch feedback was also modulated as a function of divided attention. When compared to the low-load and intermediate-load conditions, the high-load condition elicited significantly larger N1 responses and smaller P2 responses to pitch perturbations. These findings provide the first neurobehavioral evidence that divided attention can modulate auditory feedback control of vocal pitch production.
Full Text Available Pitch is an auditory percept critical to the perception of music and speech, and for these harmonic sounds, pitch is closely related to the repetition rate of the acoustic wave. This paper reports a test of the assumption that non-human primates and especially rhesus monkeys perceive the pitch of these harmonic sounds much as humans do. A new procedure was developed to train macaques to discriminate the pitch of harmonic sounds and thereby demonstrate that the lower limit for pitch perception in macaques is close to 30 Hz, as it is in humans. Moreover, when the phases of successive harmonics are alternated to cause a pseudo-doubling of the repetition rate, the lower pitch boundary in macaques decreases substantially, as it does in humans. The results suggest that both species use neural firing times to discriminate pitch, at least for sounds with relatively low repetition rates.
in listeners with SNHL, it is likely that HI listeners rely on the enhanced envelope cues to retrieve the pitch of unresolved harmonics. Hence, the relative importance of pitch cues may be altered in HI listeners, whereby envelope cues may be used instead of TFS cues to obtain a similar performance in pitch......Understanding how the human auditory system processes the physical properties of an acoustical stimulus to give rise to a pitch percept is a fascinating aspect of hearing research. Since most natural sounds are harmonic complex tones, this work focused on the nature of pitch-relevant cues...... that are necessary for the auditory system to retrieve the pitch of complex sounds. The existence of different pitch-coding mechanisms for low-numbered (spectrally resolved) and high-numbered (unresolved) harmonics was investigated by comparing pitch-discrimination performance across different cohorts of listeners...
Full Text Available Ultrasonic vocalizations (USVs in rats are thought to contain ecological signals reflecting emotional states. These USVs are centered on 50-kHz, and frequency modulation (FM is hypothesized to indicate positive emotion; however, results from recent studies are inconsistent with this hypothesis. We suspected that such inconsistencies might result from ambiguity in defining frequency modulation, and problems with acoustic analyses and behavioral protocols. We addressed these problems by applying quantitative methods for USV analyses and using a food reward operant paradigm. Our results revealed that frequency modulation varied according to the degree of positive outcomes, but the direction of change was opposite to what had been observed in previous studies. The FM in 50-kHz USVs decreased as animals learned the task and obtained more reinforcement, while USV amplitude increased as learning progressed. To reconcile these results with those from prior studies, we suggest that FM in 50-kHz USVs should be taken as an index of reward prediction errors, and USV amplitude should be considered as an index of positive emotion.
Niebuhr, Oliver; Lautenbacher, Stefan; Salinas-Ranneberg, Melissa
” (central vowel, sounding like a darker “e” as in hesitations like “ehm”)—as experimental approximations to natural vocalizations. Methods: In 50 students vowel production and self-report ratings were assessed during painful and nonpainful heat stimulation (hot water immersion) as well as during baseline......Introduction and Objectives: There have, yet, been only few attempts to phonetically characterize the vocalizations of pain, although there is wide agreement that moaning, groaning, or other nonverbal utterance can be indicative of pain. We studied the production of vowels “u,” “a,” “i”, and “schwa...... pain. Furthermore, changes from nonpainful to painful stimulations in these parameters also significantly predicted concurrent changes in pain ratings. Conclusion: Vocalization characteristics of pain seem to be best described by an increase in pitch and in loudness. Future studies using more specific...
Elisângela Barros Soares
Full Text Available OBJETIVO: caracterizar o perfil vocal dos guias de turismo, bem como gênero e idade. MÉTODOS: participaram desse estudo 23 guias de turismo, de ambos os gêneros, com idade entre 25 a 64 anos, participantes do Sindicato de Guias de Turismo do Estado de Pernambuco, que compareceram às reuniões trimestrais no período da coleta. Trata-se de um estudo de caráter descritivo, observacional e transversal. Para coleta foi realizada avaliação perceptivo-auditiva GRBAS. RESULTADOS: observou-se que a maioria dos guias apresentou loudness adequada, pitch normal e voz alterada. Além disso, as médias dos tempos máximos de fonação das vogais e das fricativas encontravam-se reduzidas e ataque vocal isocrônico. A ressonância, na maioria dos guias, estava equilibrada, mas houve uma incidência de ressonância laringo-faringea. A articulação foi precisa, com tipo e modo respiratório misto e nasal, respectivamente. Quanto à escala GRBAS as alterações apareceram de forma leve no G (grau de alteração vocal em 68%. CONCLUSÃO: na amostra estudada, a maioria era do gênero feminino com média de idade de 46 anos, e perfil vocal caracterizado por tempo máximo de fonação reduzidos, relação s/z adequado, ataque vocal isocrônico, pitch normal, loudness adequado, qualidade vocal alterada, com presença de rouquidão, soprosidade, tensão. A ressonância da maioria estava equilibrada e a articulação precisa, com tipo e modo respiratório misto e nasal, respectivamente. Quanto à escala GRBAS, as alterações apareceram de forma leve no grau de alteração vocal (G em 68% e tensão (S em 78% dos sujeitos.PURPOSE: to characterize the vocal profile of tourism guides, as well as gender and age. METHODS: 23 guides took part in this study, of both genders, with age between 25 to 64 years, partakers of the Union of Tourism Guides of the State of Pernambuco, who appeared to the quarterly meetings in the period of the collection. It is a descriptive
Pfordresher, Peter Q; Mantell, James T
Singing is a ubiquitous and culturally significant activity that humans engage in from an early age. Nevertheless, some individuals - termed poor-pitch singers - are unable to match target pitches within a musical semitone while singing. In the experiments reported here, we tested whether poor-pitch singing deficits would be reduced when individuals imitate recordings of themselves as opposed to recordings of other individuals. This prediction was based on the hypothesis that poor-pitch singers have not developed an abstract "inverse model" of the auditory-vocal system and instead must rely on sensorimotor associations that they have experienced directly, which is true for sequences an individual has already produced. In three experiments, participants, both accurate and poor-pitch singers, were better able to imitate sung recordings of themselves than sung recordings of other singers. However, this self-advantage was enhanced for poor-pitch singers. These effects were not a byproduct of self-recognition (Experiment 1), vocal timbre (Experiment 2), or the absolute pitch of target recordings (i.e., the advantage remains when recordings are transposed, Experiment 3). Results support the conceptualization of poor-pitch singing as an imitative deficit resulting from a deficient inverse model of the auditory-vocal system with respect to pitch. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Houix, Olivier; Voisin, Frédéric; Misdariis, Nicolas; Susini, Patrick
Imitative behaviors are widespread in humans, in particular whenever two persons communicate and interact. Several tokens of spoken languages (onomatopoeias, ideophones, and phonesthemes) also display different degrees of iconicity between the sound of a word and what it refers to. Thus, it probably comes at no surprise that human speakers use a lot of imitative vocalizations and gestures when they communicate about sounds, as sounds are notably difficult to describe. What is more surprising is that vocal imitations of non-vocal everyday sounds (e.g. the sound of a car passing by) are in practice very effective: listeners identify sounds better with vocal imitations than with verbal descriptions, despite the fact that vocal imitations are inaccurate reproductions of a sound created by a particular mechanical system (e.g. a car driving by) through a different system (the voice apparatus). The present study investigated the semantic representations evoked by vocal imitations of sounds by experimentally quantifying how well listeners could match sounds to category labels. The experiment used three different types of sounds: recordings of easily identifiable sounds (sounds of human actions and manufactured products), human vocal imitations, and computational “auditory sketches” (created by algorithmic computations). The results show that performance with the best vocal imitations was similar to the best auditory sketches for most categories of sounds, and even to the referent sounds themselves in some cases. More detailed analyses showed that the acoustic distance between a vocal imitation and a referent sound is not sufficient to account for such performance. Analyses suggested that instead of trying to reproduce the referent sound as accurately as vocally possible, vocal imitations focus on a few important features, which depend on each particular sound category. These results offer perspectives for understanding how human listeners store and access long
Lear, Aaron; Patel, Niraj
The windmill softball pitch generates considerable forces about the athlete's shoulder and elbow. The injury pattern of softball pitchers seems to be primarily overuse injury, and they seem not to suffer the same volume of injury that baseball pitchers do. This article will explore softball pitching techniques, kinetics and kinematics of the windmill pitch, epidemiology of softball pitchers, and discuss possible etiologies of softball pitching injuries.
Full Text Available This paper presents a method for automatic music transcription applied to audio recordings of a cappella performances with multiple singers. We propose a system for multi-pitch detection and voice assignment that integrates an acoustic and a music language model. The acoustic model performs spectrogram decomposition, extending probabilistic latent component analysis (PLCA using a six-dimensional dictionary with pre-extracted log-spectral templates. The music language model performs voice separation and assignment using hidden Markov models that apply musicological assumptions. By integrating the two models, the system is able to detect multiple concurrent pitches in polyphonic vocal music and assign each detected pitch to a specific voice type such as soprano, alto, tenor or bass (SATB. We compare our system against multiple baselines, achieving state-of-the-art results for both multi-pitch detection and voice assignment on a dataset of Bach chorales and another of barbershop quartets. We also present an additional evaluation of our system using varied pitch tolerance levels to investigate its performance at 20-cent pitch resolution.
Smith, David R R
Whispered vowels, produced with no vocal fold vibration, lack the periodic temporal fine structure which in voiced vowels underlies the perceptual attribute of pitch (a salient auditory cue to speaker sex). Voiced vowels possess no temporal fine structure at very short durations (below two glottal cycles). The prediction was that speaker-sex discrimination performance for whispered and voiced vowels would be similar for very short durations but, as stimulus duration increases, voiced vowel performance would improve relative to whispered vowel performance as pitch information becomes available. This pattern of results was shown for women's but not for men's voices. A whispered vowel needs to have a duration three times longer than a voiced vowel before listeners can reliably tell whether it's spoken by a man or woman (∼30 ms vs. ∼10 ms). Listeners were half as sensitive to information about speaker-sex when it is carried by whispered compared with voiced vowels.
Full Text Available Voice, as a secondary sexual characteristic, is known to affect the perceived attractiveness of human individuals. But the underlying mechanism of vocal attractiveness has remained unclear. Here, we presented human listeners with acoustically altered natural sentences and fully synthetic sentences with systematically manipulated pitch, formants and voice quality based on a principle of body size projection reported for animal calls and emotional human vocal expressions. The results show that male listeners preferred a female voice that signals a small body size, with relatively high pitch, wide formant dispersion and breathy voice, while female listeners preferred a male voice that signals a large body size with low pitch and narrow formant dispersion. Interestingly, however, male vocal attractiveness was also enhanced by breathiness, which presumably softened the aggressiveness associated with a large body size. These results, together with the additional finding that the same vocal dimensions also affect emotion judgment, indicate that humans still employ a vocal interaction strategy used in animal calls despite the development of complex language.
Autistic musical savants invariably possess absolute pitch ability and are able to disembed individual musical tones from chords. Enhanced pitch discrimination and memory has been found in non-savant individuals with autism who also show superior performance on visual disembedding tasks. These experiments investigate the extent that enhanced disembedding ability will be found within the musical domain in autism. High-functioning children with autism, together with age- and intelligence-matched controls, participated in three experiments testing pitch memory, labelling and chord disembedding. The findings from experiment 1 showed enhanced pitch memory and labelling in the autism group. In experiment 2, when subjects were pre-exposed to labelled individual tones, superior chord segmentation was also found. However, in experiment 3, when disembedding performance was less reliant on pitch memory, no group differences emerged and the children with autism, like controls, perceived musical chords holistically. These findings indicate that pitch memory and labelling is superior in autism and can facilitate performance on musical disembedding tasks. However, when task performance does not rely on long-term pitch memory, autistic children, like controls, succumb to the Gestalt qualities of chords.
Charles R Larson
Full Text Available The pitch-shift paradigm has become a widely used method for studying the role of voice pitch auditory feedback in voice control. This paradigm introduces small, brief pitch shifts in voice auditory feedback to vocalizing subjects. The perturbations trigger a reflexive mechanism that counteracts the change in pitch. The underlying mechanisms of the vocal responses are thought to reflect a negative feedback control system that is similar to constructs developed to explain other forms of motor control. Another use of this technique requires subjects to voluntarily change the pitch of their voice when they hear a pitch shift stimulus. Under these conditions, short latency responses are produced that change voice pitch to match that of the stimulus. The pitch-shift technique has been used with magnetoencephalography (MEG and electroencephalography (EEG recordings, and has shown that at vocal onset there is normally a suppression of neural activity related to vocalization. However, if a pitch-shift is also presented at voice onset, there is a cancellation of this suppression, which has been interpreted to mean that one way in which a person distinguishes self-vocalization from vocalization of others is by a comparison of the intended voice and the actual voice. Studies of the pitch shift reflex in the fMRI environment show that the superior temporal gyrus (STG plays an important role in the process of controlling voice F0 based on auditory feedback. Additional studies using fMRI for effective connectivity modeling show that the left and right STG play critical roles in correcting for an error in voice production. While both the left and right STG are involved in this process, a feedback loop develops between left and right STG during perturbations, in which the left to right connection becomes stronger, and a new negative right to left connection emerges along with the emergence of other feedback loops within the cortical network tested.
Duke, Robert A.; And Others
Presents a study which investigated the perception of music majors and nonmusic majors concerning their ability to discriminate the way in which altered musical excerpts differed in pitch or tempo (or both) from preceding presentations. Concludes that both groups responded similarly across conditions and replications, and that tempo changes were…
Flagge, Ashley Gaal; Estis, Julie M.; Moore, Robert E.
Purpose: The relationship between short-term memory for phonology and pitch was explored by examining accuracy scores for typically developing children for 5 experimental tasks: immediate nonword repetition (NWR), nonword repetition with an 8-s silent interference (NWRS), pitch discrimination (PD), pitch discrimination with an 8-s silent…
Møller, Cecilie; Højlund, Andreas; Bærentsen, Klaus B.
Perception is fundamentally a multisensory experience. The principle of inverse effectiveness (PoIE) states how the multisensory gain is maximal when responses to the unisensory constituents of the stimuli are weak. It is one of the basic principles underlying multisensory processing of spatiotem...
Vernon, P E
The auditory skill known as 'absolute pitch' is discussed, and it is shown that this differs greatly in accuracy of identification or reproduction of musical tones from ordinary discrimination of 'tonal height' which is to some extent trainable. The present writer possessed absolute pitch for almost any tone or chord over the normal musical range, from about the age of 17 to 52. He then started to hear all music one semitone too high, and now at the age of 71 it is heard a full tone above the true pitch. Tests were carried out under controlled conditions, in which 68 to 95 per cent of notes were identified as one semitone or one tone higher than they should be. Changes with ageing seem more likely to occur in the elasticity of the basilar membrane mechanisms than in the long-term memory which is used for aural analysis of complex sounds. Thus this experience supports the view that some resolution of complex sounds takes place at the peripheral sense organ, and this provides information which can be incorrect, for interpretation by the cortical centres.
Full Text Available Shrews have rich vocal repertoires that include vocalizations within the human audible frequency range and ultrasonic vocalizations. Here, we recorded and analyzed in detail the acoustic structure of a vocalization with unclear functional significance that was spontaneously produced by 15 adult, captive Asian house shrews (Suncus murinus while they were lying motionless and resting in their nests. This vocalization was usually emitted repeatedly in a long series with regular intervals. It showed some structural variability; however, the shrews most frequently emitted a tonal, low-frequency vocalization with minimal frequency modulation and a low, non-vocal click that was clearly noticeable at its beginning. There was no effect of sex, but the acoustic structure of the analyzed vocalizations differed significantly between individual shrews. The encoded individuality was low, but it cannot be excluded that this individuality would allow discrimination of family members, i.e., a male and female with their young, collectively resting in a common nest. The question remains whether the Asian house shrews indeed perceive the presence of their mates, parents or young resting in a common nest via the resting-associated vocalization and whether they use it to discriminate among their family members. Additional studies are needed to explain the possible functional significance of resting-associated vocalizations emitted by captive Asian house shrews. Our study highlights that the acoustic communication of shrews is a relatively understudied topic, particularly considering that they are highly vocal mammals.
Sares, Anastasia G.; Foster, Nicholas E. V.; Allen, Kachina; Hyde, Krista L.
Purpose: Musical training is often linked to enhanced auditory discrimination, but the relative roles of pitch and time in music and speech are unclear. Moreover, it is unclear whether pitch and time processing are correlated across individuals and how they may be affected by attention. This study aimed to examine pitch and time processing in…
Tillmann, Barbara; Lévêque, Yohana; Fornoni, Lesly; Albouy, Philippe; Caclin, Anne
Congenital amusia is a neuro-developmental disorder of music perception and production. The hypothesis is that the musical deficits arise from altered pitch processing, with impairments in pitch discrimination (i.e., pitch change detection, pitch direction discrimination and identification) and short-term memory. The present review article focuses on the deficit of short-term memory for pitch. Overall, the data discussed here suggest impairments at each level of processing in short-term memory tasks; starting with the encoding of the pitch information and the creation of the adequate memory trace, the retention of the pitch traces over time as well as the recollection and comparison of the stored information with newly incoming information. These impairments have been related to altered brain responses in a distributed fronto-temporal network, associated with decreased connectivity between these structures, as well as in abnormalities in the connectivity between the two auditory cortices. In contrast, amusic participants׳ short-term memory abilities for verbal material are preserved. These findings show that short-term memory deficits in congenital amusia are specific to pitch, suggesting a pitch-memory system that is, at least partly, separated from verbal memory. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled SI: Auditory working memory. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Tavares, Elaine L M; Martins, Regina H G
The aim of this study was to perform voice evaluation in teachers with and without vocal symptoms, identifying etiologic factors of dysphonia, voice symptoms, vocal qualities, and laryngeal lesions. Eighty teachers were divided into two groups: GI (without or sporadic symptoms, 40) and GII (with frequent vocal symptoms, 40). They answered a specific questionnaire, and were subject to a perceptual vocal assessment (maximum phonation time, glottal attack, resonance, coordination of breathing and voicing, pitch, and loudness), GIRBAS scale, and to videolaryngoscopy. Females were predominant in both groups, and the age range was from 36 to 50 years. Elementary teachers predominated, working in classes with 31-40 students. Voice symptoms and alterations in the perceptual vocal analysis and in the GIRBAS scale were more frequent in GII. In 46 teachers (GI-16; GII-30), videolaryngoscopy exams were abnormal with the vocal nodules being the most frequent lesions. These results indicate that a teacher's voice is compromised, and requires more attention including control of environmental factors and associated diseases, preventive vocal hygiene, periodic laryngeal examinations, and access to adequate specialist treatment.
Miller, Douglas J.; Chang, Ching-Feng; Lewis, Irwin C.; Lewis, Richard T.
A high coking value pitch prepared from coal tar distillate and has a low softening point and a high carbon value while containing substantially no quinoline insolubles is disclosed. The pitch can be used as an impregnant or binder for producing carbon and graphite articles.
Terry, Andrew Mark Ryder; Peake, Thomas More; McGregor, Peter Kenneth
Identifying the individuals within a population can generate information on life history parameters, generate input data for conservation models, and highlight behavioural traits that may affect management decisions and error or bias within census methods. Individual animals can be discriminated...... by features of their vocalisations. This vocal individuality can be utilised as an alternative marking technique in situations where the marks are difficult to detect or animals are sensitive to disturbance. Vocal individuality can also be used in cases were the capture and handling of an animal is either...... and techniques for using this to count and monitor populations over time. We present case studies in birds where vocal individuality has been applied to conservation and we discuss its role in mammals....
Perfect pitch, or absolute pitch (AP), is defined as the ability to identify or produce the pitch of a sound without need for a reference pitch, and is generally regarded as a valuable asset to the musician. However, there has been no recent review of the literature examining its aetiology and its utility taking into account emerging scientific advances in AP research, notably in functional imaging. This review analyses the key empirical research on AP, focusing on genetic and neuroimaging studies. The review concludes that: AP probably has a genetic predisposition, although this is based on limited evidence; early musical training is almost certainly essential for AP acquisition; and, although there is evidence that it may be relevant to speech processing, AP can interfere with relative pitch, an ability on which humans rely to communicate effectively. The review calls into question the value of AP to musicians and non-musicians alike. © 2014 Royal College of Physicians.
Bele, Irene Velsvik
It is common practice in vocal training to make use of vocal exercise techniques that involve partial occlusion of the vocal tract. Various techniques are used; some of them form an occlusion within the front part of the oral cavity or at the lips. Another vocal exercise technique involves lengthening the vocal tract; for example, the method of phonation into small tubes. This essay presents some studies made on the effects of various vocal training methods that involve an artificially lengthened and constricted vocal tract. The influence of sufficient acoustic impedance on vocal fold vibration and economical voice production is presented.
Linear prediction (LP) analysis has been applied to speech system over the last few decades. LP technique is well-suited for speech analysis due to its ability to model speech production process approximately. Hence LP analysis has been widely used for speech enhancement, low-bit-rate speech coding in cellular telephony, speech recognition, characteristic parameter extraction (vocal tract resonances frequencies, fundamental frequency called pitch) and so on. However, the performance of the co...
McClaskey, Carolyn Marie
Sounds that evoke a sense of pitch are ubiquitous in our environment and important for speech, music, and auditory scene analysis. The frequencies of these sounds rarely remain constant, however, and the direction and extent of pitch change is often more important than the exact pitches themselves. This dissertation examines the mechanisms underlying how we perceive relative pitch distance, focusing on two types of stimuli: continuous pitch changes and discrete pitch changes. In a series of e...
Faragó, Tamás; Andics, Attila; Devecseri, Viktor; Kis, Anna; Gácsi, Márta; Miklósi, Adám
Humans excel at assessing conspecific emotional valence and intensity, based solely on non-verbal vocal bursts that are also common in other mammals. It is not known, however, whether human listeners rely on similar acoustic cues to assess emotional content in conspecific and heterospecific vocalizations, and which acoustical parameters affect their performance. Here, for the first time, we directly compared the emotional valence and intensity perception of dog and human non-verbal vocalizations. We revealed similar relationships between acoustic features and emotional valence and intensity ratings of human and dog vocalizations: those with shorter call lengths were rated as more positive, whereas those with a higher pitch were rated as more intense. Our findings demonstrate that humans rate conspecific emotional vocalizations along basic acoustic rules, and that they apply similar rules when processing dog vocal expressions. This suggests that humans may utilize similar mental mechanisms for recognizing human and heterospecific vocal emotions.
Bourne, Tracy; Kenny, Dianna
To gather qualitative descriptions of music theater vocal qualities including belt, legit, and mix from expert pedagogues to better define this voice type. This is a prospective, semistructured interview. Twelve expert teachers from United States, United Kingdom, Asia, and Australia were interviewed by Skype and asked to identify characteristics of music theater vocal qualities including vocal production, physiology, esthetics, pitch range, and pedagogical techniques. Responses were compared with published studies on music theater voice. Belt and legit were generally described as distinct sounds with differing physiological and technical requirements. Teachers were concerned that belt should be taught "safely" to minimize vocal health risks. There was consensus between teachers and published research on the physiology of the glottis and vocal tract; however, teachers were not in agreement about breathing techniques. Neither were teachers in agreement about the meaning of "mix." Most participants described belt as heavily weighted, thick folds, thyroarytenoid-dominant, or chest register; however, there was no consensus on an appropriate term. Belt substyles were named and generally categorized by weightedness or tone color. Descriptions of male belt were less clear than for female belt. This survey provides an overview of expert pedagogical perspectives on the characteristics of belt, legit, and mix qualities in the music theater voice. Although teacher responses are generally in agreement with published research, there are still many controversial issues and gaps in knowledge and understanding of this vocal technique. Breathing techniques, vocal range, mix, male belt, and vocal registers require continuing investigation so that we can learn more about efficient and healthy vocal function in music theater singing. Copyright © 2016 The Voice Foundation. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Jones, Benedict C; Feinberg, David R; Debruine, Lisa M; Little, Anthony C; Vukovic, Jovana
Most previous studies of vocal attractiveness have focused on preferences for physical characteristics of voices such as pitch. Here we examine the content of vocalizations in interaction with such physical traits, finding that vocal cues of social interest modulate the strength of men's preferences for raised pitch in women's voices. Men showed stronger preferences for raised pitch when judging the voices of women who appeared interested in the listener than when judging the voices of women who appeared relatively disinterested in the listener. These findings show that voice preferences are not determined solely by physical properties of voices and that men integrate information about voice pitch and the degree of social interest expressed by women when forming voice preferences. Women's preferences for raised pitch in women's voices were not modulated by cues of social interest, suggesting that the integration of cues of social interest and voice pitch when men judge the attractiveness of women's voices may reflect adaptations that promote efficient allocation of men's mating effort.
Pelaez, Martha; Virues-Ortega, Javier; Gewirtz, Jacob L.
Maternal vocal imitation of infant vocalizations is highly prevalent during face-to-face interactions of infants and their caregivers. Although maternal vocal imitation has been associated with later verbal development, its potentially reinforcing effect on infant vocalizations has not been explored experimentally. This study examined the…
Rago, Vincenzo; Silva, João R; Brito, João
Soccer training and completion is conventionally practiced on natural grass (NG) or artificial turf (AT). Recently, AT pitches for training / competition, and of unstable surfaces for injury prevention training has increased. Therefore, soccer players are frequently exposed to variations in pitch...... surface during either training or competition. These ground changes may impact physical and physiological responses, adaptations as well as the injury. The aim of this review was to summarize the acute physical and physiological responses, chronic adaptations, and injury risk associated with exercising...... on different pitch surfaces in soccer. Eligible studies were published in English, had pitch surface as an independent variable, and had physical, physiological or epidemiological information as outcome variables. Specific data extracted from the articles included the training response, training adaptations...
McLachlan, Neil; Marco, David; Light, Maria; Wilson, Sarah
To date, no consensus exists in the literature as to theories of consonance and dissonance. Experimental data collected over the last century have raised questions about the dominant theories that are based on frequency relationships between the harmonics of music chords. This study provides experimental evidence that strongly challenges these theories and suggests a new theory of dissonance based on relationships between pitch perception and recognition. Experiment 1 shows that dissonance does not increase with increasing numbers of harmonics in chords as predicted by Helmholtz's (1863/1954) roughness theory, nor does it increase with fewer pitch-matching errors as predicted by Stumpf's (1898) tonal fusion theory. Dissonance was strongly correlated with pitch-matching error for chords, which in turn was reduced by chord familiarity and greater music training. This led to the proposition that long-term memory templates for common chords assist the perception of pitches in chords by providing an estimate of the chord intervals from spectral information. When recognition mechanisms based on these templates fail, the spectral pitch estimate is inconsistent with the period of the waveform, leading to cognitive incongruence and the negative affect of dissonance. The cognitive incongruence theory of dissonance was rigorously tested in Experiment 2, in which nonmusicians were trained to match the pitches of a random selection of 2-pitch chords. After 10 training sessions, they rated the chords they had learned to pitch match as less dissonant than the unlearned chords, irrespective of their tuning, providing strong support for a cognitive mechanism of dissonance. PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2013 APA, all rights reserved.
Krishnan, Ananthanarayan; Gandour, Jackson T.; Ananthakrishnan, Saradha; Vijayaraghavan, Venkatakrishnan
Pitch processing at cortical and subcortical stages of processing is shaped by language experience. We recently demonstrated that specific components of the cortical pitch response (CPR) index the more rapidly-changing portions of the high rising Tone 2 of Mandarin Chinese, in addition to marking pitch onset and sound offset. In this study, we examine how language experience (Mandarin vs. English) shapes the processing of different temporal attributes of pitch reflected in the CPR components using stimuli representative of within-category variants of Tone 2. Results showed that the magnitude of CPR components (Na-Pb and Pb-Nb) and the correlation between these two components and pitch acceleration were stronger for the Chinese listeners compared to English listeners for stimuli that fell within the range of Tone 2 citation forms. Discriminant function analysis revealed that the Na-Pb component was more than twice as important as Pb-Nb in grouping listeners by language affiliation. In addition, a stronger stimulus-dependent, rightward asymmetry was observed for the Chinese group at the temporal, but not frontal, electrode sites. This finding may reflect selective recruitment of experience-dependent, pitch-specific mechanisms in right auditory cortex to extract more complex, time-varying pitch patterns. Taken together, these findings suggest that long-term language experience shapes early sensory level processing of pitch in the auditory cortex, and that the sensitivity of the CPR may vary depending on the relative linguistic importance of specific temporal attributes of dynamic pitch. PMID:25506127
Saldias, Marcelo; Guzman, Marco; Miranda, Gonzalo; Laukkanen, Anne-Maria
Vocal tract setting in hyperfunctional patients is characterized by a high larynx and narrowing of the epilaryngeal and pharyngeal region. Similar observations have been made for various singing styles, eg, belting. The voice quality in belting has been described to be loud, speech like, and high pitched. It is also often described as sounding "pressed" or "tense". The above mentioned has led to the hypothesis that belting may be strenuous to the vocal folds. However, singers and teachers of belting do not regard belting as particularly strenuous. This study investigates possible similarities and differences between hyperfunctional voice production and belting. This study concerns vocal tract setting. Four male patients with hyperfunctional dysphonia and one male contemporary commercial music singer were registered with computerized tomography while phonating on [a:] in their habitual speaking pitch. Additionally, the singer used the pitch G4 in belting. The scannings were studied in sagittal and transversal dimensions by measuring lengths, widths, and areas. Various similarities were found between belting and hyperfunction: high vertical larynx position, small hypopharyngeal width, and epilaryngeal outlet. On the other hand, belting differed from dysphonia (in addition to higher pitch) by a wider lip and jaw opening, and larger volumes of the oral cavity. Belting takes advantage of "megaphone shape" of the vocal tract. Future studies should focus on modeling and simulation to address sound energy transfer. Also, they should consider aerodynamic variables and vocal fold vibration to evaluate the "price of decibels" in these phonation types. Copyright © 2018. Published by Elsevier Inc.
Tillmann, Barbara; Rusconi, Elena; Traube, Caroline; Butterworth, Brian; Umiltà, Carlo; Peretz, Isabelle
Congenital amusia is a lifelong disorder of music processing that has been ascribed to impaired pitch perception and memory. The present study tested a large group of amusics (n=17) and provided evidence that their pitch deficit affects pitch processing in speech to a lesser extent: Fine-grained pitch discrimination was better in spoken syllables than in acoustically matched tones. Unlike amusics, control participants performed fine-grained pitch discrimination better for musical material than for verbal material. These findings suggest that pitch extraction can be influenced by the nature of the material (music vs speech), and that amusics' pitch deficit is not restricted to musical material, but extends to segmented speech events. © 2011 Acoustical Society of America
Prince, Jon B; Thompson, William F; Schmuckler, Mark A
The authors examined how the structural attributes of tonality and meter influence musical pitch-time relations. Listeners heard a musical context followed by probe events that varied in pitch class and temporal position. Tonal and metric hierarchies contributed additively to the goodness-of-fit of probes, with pitch class exerting a stronger influence than temporal position (Experiment 1), even when listeners attempted to ignore pitch (Experiment 2). Speeded classification tasks confirmed this asymmetry. Temporal classification was biased by tonal stability (Experiment 3), but pitch classification was unaffected by temporal position (Experiment 4). Experiments 5 and 6 ruled out explanations based on the presence of pitch classes and temporal positions in the context, unequal stimulus quantity, and discriminability. The authors discuss how typical Western music biases attention toward pitch and distinguish between dimensional discriminability and salience. PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2009 APA, all rights reserved.
Full Text Available Introduction: -The larynx is an air passage and a sphincteric device used in respiration and phonation. The larynx, from inside outwards has a framework of mucosa surrounded by fibro-elastic membrane which in turn is surrounded by cartilages and then a layer of muscles. Vocal folds are intrinsic ligament of larynx covered by mucosal folds. Larynx generates sound through rhythmic opening and closing of the vocal folds. The perceived pitch of human voice mainly depends upon fundamental frequency of sound generated by larynx. Aim: - The aim of present study is to measure various dimensions of vocal folds in Indian cadavers. Material & Methods: - 50 larynx were obtained from embalmed cadavers, of which 10 larynx were of females. Vocal cords were dissected from the larynx and morphometric analysis was done. Results and Conclusions: - The average total length of the vocal folds was found to be 16.11 mm. ± 2.62 mm. in male and 14.10 mm. ± 1.54 mm. in female cadavers. The average width of the vocal folds was found to be 4.38 mm. ± 0.74 mm. in male and 3.60 mm. ± 0.64 mm. in female cadavers. The average total length of the membranous part of the vocal folds was found to be 11.90 mm. ± 1.86 mm. in male and 10.45 mm. ± 1.81 mm. in female cadavers. The average ratio of the length of the membranous and the cartilaginous parts of the vocal folds was calculated to be 3.10 ± 0.96in male and 2.85 ± 0.73in female cadavers.
Fitch, W T
Body weight, length, and vocal tract length were measured for 23 rhesus macaques (Macaca mulatta) of various sizes using radiographs and computer graphic techniques. linear predictive coding analysis of tape-recorded threat vocalizations were used to determine vocal tract resonance frequencies ("formants") for the same animals. A new acoustic variable is proposed, "formant dispersion," which should theoretically depend upon vocal tract length. Formant dispersion is the averaged difference between successive formant frequencies, and was found to be closely tied to both vocal tract length and body size. Despite the common claim that voice fundamental frequency (F0) provides an acoustic indication of body size, repeated investigations have failed to support such a relationship in many vertebrate species including humans. Formant dispersion, unlike voice pitch, is proposed to be a reliable predictor of body size in macaques, and probably many other species.
Chen, Yang; Kimelman, Mikael D Z; Micco, Katie
This study is designed to compare the habitual pitch measured in two different speech activities (free play activity and traditionally used structured speech activity) for normally developing preschool-aged children to explore to what extent preschoolers vary their vocal pitch among different speech environments. Habitual pitch measurements were conducted for 10 normally developing children (2 boys, 8 girls) between the ages of 31 months and 71 months during two different activities: (1) free play; and (2) structured speech. Speech samples were recorded using a throat microphone connected with a wireless transmitter in both activities. The habitual pitch (in Hz) was measured for all collected speech samples by using voice analysis software (Real-Time Pitch). Significantly higher habitual pitch is found during free play in contrast to structured speech activities. In addition, there is no showing of significant difference of habitual pitch elicited across a variety of structured speech activities. Findings suggest that the vocal usage of preschoolers appears to be more effortful during free play than during structured activities. It is recommended that a comprehensive evaluation for young children's voice needs to be based on the speech/voice samples collected from both free play and structured activities.
Schultz-Coulon, H J; Fues, C P
Any impairment of audio-phonatory control by background noise is followed by an increase in both the intensity and pitch of the speaking voice (Lombard reflex, 1911), thus increasing vocal strain. As a consequence, it might be anticipated that persons reacting to noise with marked changes in voice might be more liable to develop dysphonia. 22 singers, 34 normal controls, and 22 patients with hyperfunctional dysphonia where studied. In all patients, both ears were gradually masked with white noise. The change of the mean intensity level and of the mean pitch level of the speaking voice were then measured objectively with a special fundamental frequency analyzer (Fedders and Schultz-Coulon, 1975). Results show that the increase of intensity is comparable in all subjects, whereas the elevation of the mean pitch level differs significantly: trained voices (singers) react with the least pitch increment whereas dysphonic patients react with the most. The following conclusions were made from the present investigation: 1. Extreme increments in pitch level can be considered to be a more significant etiological factor of dysphonia than intensity increments; 2. Vocal therapy and voice training may have a favorable effect on the Lombard reflex (probably by improvement of the kinesthetic control mechanism) so that the speaking voice in a noisy environment is raised less with less vocal strain. The study also indicates that measurement of pitch changes during binaural masking can provide important information for the diagnosis, therapy and prophylaxis of dysphonia.
Nielsen, Andreas Brinch; Hansen, Lars Kai; Kjems, U
A sound classification model is presented that can classify signals into music, noise and speech. The model extracts the pitch of the signal using the harmonic product spectrum. Based on the pitch estimate and a pitch error measure, features are created and used in a probabilistic model with soft......-max output function. Both linear and quadratic inputs are used. The model is trained on 2 hours of sound and tested on publicly available data. A test classification error below 0.05 with 1 s classification windows is achieved. Further more it is shown that linear input performs as well as a quadratic......, and that even though classification gets marginally better, not much is achieved by increasing the window size beyond 1 s....
Myers, Alexander McNaughton
A series of five experiments was conducted to determine whether operant or respondent factors controlled the emission of a particular vocalization ( "Q" ) by human infants 16 to 18 months old. Experiment 1 consisted of a pilot investigation of the effects of an autoshaping procedure on three infants' vocal behavior. All three subjects demonstrated increased emission of the target sound during the CR period. Experiments 2 through 4 attempted to replicate the findings of Experiment 1 under cont...
Rimland, Jeff; Ballora, Mark
The field of sonification, which uses auditory presentation of data to replace or augment visualization techniques, is gaining popularity and acceptance for analysis of "big data" and for assisting analysts who are unable to utilize traditional visual approaches due to either: 1) visual overload caused by existing displays; 2) concurrent need to perform critical visually intensive tasks (e.g. operating a vehicle or performing a medical procedure); or 3) visual impairment due to either temporary environmental factors (e.g. dense smoke) or biological causes. Sonification tools typically map data values to sound attributes such as pitch, volume, and localization to enable them to be interpreted via human listening. In more complex problems, the challenge is in creating multi-dimensional sonifications that are both compelling and listenable, and that have enough discrete features that can be modulated in ways that allow meaningful discrimination by a listener. We propose a solution to this problem that incorporates Complex Event Processing (CEP) with speech synthesis. Some of the more promising sonifications to date use speech synthesis, which is an "instrument" that is amenable to extended listening, and can also provide a great deal of subtle nuance. These vocal nuances, which can represent a nearly limitless number of expressive meanings (via a combination of pitch, inflection, volume, and other acoustic factors), are the basis of our daily communications, and thus have the potential to engage the innate human understanding of these sounds. Additionally, recent advances in CEP have facilitated the extraction of multi-level hierarchies of information, which is necessary to bridge the gap between raw data and this type of vocal synthesis. We therefore propose that CEP-enabled sonifications based on the sound of human utterances could be considered the next logical step in human-centric "big data" compression and transmission.
Reiss, Lina A J; Fowler, Jennifer R; Hartling, Curtis L; Oh, Yonghee
Binaural pitch fusion is the fusion of stimuli that evoke different pitches between the ears into a single auditory image. Individuals who use hearing aids or bimodal cochlear implants (CIs) experience abnormally broad binaural pitch fusion, such that sounds differing in pitch by as much as 3-4 octaves are fused across ears, leading to spectral averaging and speech perception interference. The goal of this study was to determine if adult bilateral CI users also experience broad binaural pitch fusion. Stimuli were pulse trains delivered to individual electrodes. Fusion ranges were measured using simultaneous, dichotic presentation of reference and comparison stimuli in opposite ears, and varying the comparison stimulus to find the range that fused with the reference stimulus. Bilateral CI listeners had binaural pitch fusion ranges varying from 0 to 12 mm (average 6.1 ± 3.9 mm), where 12 mm indicates fusion over all electrodes in the array. No significant correlations of fusion range were observed with any subject factors related to age, hearing loss history, or hearing device history, or with any electrode factors including interaural electrode pitch mismatch, pitch match bandwidth, or within-ear electrode discrimination abilities. Bilateral CI listeners have abnormally broad fusion, similar to hearing aid and bimodal CI listeners. This broad fusion may explain the variability of binaural benefits for speech perception in quiet and in noise in bilateral CI users.
Whiteford, Kelly L; Oxenham, Andrew J
Congenital amusia is a music perception disorder believed to reflect a deficit in fine-grained pitch perception and/or short-term or working memory for pitch. Because most measures of pitch perception include memory and segmentation components, it has been difficult to determine the true extent of pitch processing deficits in amusia. It is also unclear whether pitch deficits persist at frequencies beyond the range of musical pitch. To address these questions, experiments were conducted with amusics and matched controls, manipulating both the stimuli and the task demands. First, we assessed pitch discrimination at low (500Hz and 2000Hz) and high (8000Hz) frequencies using a three-interval forced-choice task. Amusics exhibited deficits even at the highest frequency, which lies beyond the existence region of musical pitch. Next, we assessed the extent to which frequency coding deficits persist in one- and two-interval frequency-modulation (FM) and amplitude-modulation (AM) detection tasks at 500Hz at slow (f m =4Hz) and fast (f m =20Hz) modulation rates. Amusics still exhibited deficits in one-interval FM detection tasks that should not involve memory or segmentation. Surprisingly, amusics were also impaired on AM detection, which should not involve pitch processing. Finally, direct comparisons between the detection of continuous and discrete FM demonstrated that amusics suffer deficits in both coding and segmenting pitch information. Our results reveal auditory deficits in amusia extending beyond pitch perception that are subtle when controlling for memory and segmentation, and are likely exacerbated in more complex contexts such as musical listening. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Gadziola, Marie A.
The underlying goal of this dissertation is to understand how the amygdala, a brain region involved in establishing the emotional significance of sensory input, contributes to the processing of complex sounds. The general hypothesis is that communication calls of big brown bats (Eptesicus fuscus) transmit relevant information about social context that is reflected in the activity of amygdalar neurons. The first specific aim analyzed social vocalizations emitted under a variety of behavioral contexts, and related vocalizations to an objective measure of internal physiological state by monitoring the heart rate of vocalizing bats. These experiments revealed a complex acoustic communication system among big brown bats in which acoustic cues and call structure signal the emotional state of a sender. The second specific aim characterized the responsiveness of single neurons in the basolateral amygdala to a range of social syllables. Neurons typically respond to the majority of tested syllables, but effectively discriminate among vocalizations by varying the response duration. This novel coding strategy underscores the importance of persistent firing in the general functioning of the amygdala. The third specific aim examined the influence of acoustic context by characterizing both the behavioral and neurophysiological responses to natural vocal sequences. Vocal sequences differentially modify the internal affective state of a listening bat, with lower aggression vocalizations evoking the greatest change in heart rate. Amygdalar neurons employ two different coding strategies: low background neurons respond selectively to very few stimuli, whereas high background neurons respond broadly to stimuli but demonstrate variation in response magnitude and timing. Neurons appear to discriminate the valence of stimuli, with aggression sequences evoking robust population-level responses across all sound levels. Further, vocal sequences show improved discrimination among stimuli
Full Text Available OBJETIVO: analisar o impacto vocal nas atividades diárias em professores do ensino médio. Correlacionar os achado da auto-percepção do problema vocal com os aspectos: efeitos no trabalho, na comunicação diária, na comunicação social e na sua emoção. MÉTODOS: a amostra foi constituída por 107 professores, sendo 86 com queixa e 21 sem queixa, selecionados em escolas da rede particular de ensino de Maceió-AL. Cada professor respondeu individualmente o protocolo Perfil Participação em Atividades Vocais na presença da pesquisadora, assinalando suas respostas em uma escala visual que varia de 0 a 10. O protocolo é composto por 28 questões com a presença integrada em cinco aspectos englobados para avaliar a qualidade de vida e o resultado de tratamentos vocais. O protocolo oferece, ainda, dois escores adicionais: pontuação de limitação nas atividades (PLA e de restrição de participação (PRP. RESULTADOS: na comparação dos grupos com e sem queixa vocal foram verificados que todos os resultados foram estatisticamente significantes (pPURPOSE: to analyze the vocal impact in the daily activities on high-school teachers. Correlate the finding of the auto-perception on the vocal problem with the following aspects: effects in the work, daily communication, social communication and, its emotion METHODS: the sample consisted of 107 teachers, 86 with and 21 with no complaint, selected from private teaching schools in Maceió-AL. Each teacher answered individually the Protocol for Voice Activity Participation Profile in the presence of the researcher, noting their responses on a visual scale ranging from 0 to 10. The protocol is composed of 28 questions with the presence integrated in five aspects to evaluate the quality of life and the result of vocal treatments. The protocol offers, still, two additional scores: punctuation of limitation in the activities (PLA and restriction of participation (PRP. RESULTS: comparing the groups with
Guzman, Marco; Laukkanen, Anne-Maria; Krupa, Petr; Horáček, Jaromir; Švec, Jan G; Geneid, Ahmed
The present study aimed to investigate the vocal tract and glottal function during and after phonation into a tube and a stirring straw. A male classically trained singer was assessed. Computerized tomography (CT) was performed when the subject produced [a:] at comfortable speaking pitch, phonated into the resonance tube and when repeating [a:] after the exercise. Similar procedure was performed with a narrow straw after 15 minutes silence. Anatomic distances and area measures were obtained from CT midsagittal and transversal images. Acoustic, perceptual, electroglottographic (EGG), and subglottic pressure measures were also obtained. During and after phonation into the tube or straw, the velum closed the nasal passage better, the larynx position lowered, and hypopharynx area widened. Moreover, the ratio between the inlet of the lower pharynx and the outlet of the epilaryngeal tube became larger during and after tube/straw phonation. Acoustic results revealed a stronger spectral prominence in the singer/speaker's formant cluster region after exercising. Listening test demonstrated better voice quality after straw/tube than before. Contact quotient derived from EGG decreased during both tube and straw and remained lower after exercising. Subglottic pressure increased during straw and remained somewhat higher after it. CT and acoustic results indicated that vocal exercises with increased vocal tract impedance lead to increased vocal efficiency and economy. One of the major changes was the more prominent singer's/speaker's formant cluster. Vocal tract and glottal modifications were more prominent during and after straw exercising compared with tube phonation. Copyright © 2013 The Voice Foundation. Published by Mosby, Inc. All rights reserved.
Ben-Haim, Moshe Shay; Eitan, Zohar; Chajut, Eran
Recent studies indicate that the ability to represent absolute pitch values in long-term memory, long believed to be the possession of a small minority of trained musicians endowed with "absolute pitch," is in fact shared to some extent by a considerable proportion of the population. The current study examined whether this newly discovered ability affects aspects of music and auditory cognition, particularly pitch learning and evaluation. Our starting points are two well-established premises: (1) frequency of occurrence has an influence on the way we process stimuli; (2) in Western music, some pitches and musical keys are much more frequent than others. Based on these premises, we hypothesize that if absolute pitch values are indeed represented in long-term memory, pitch frequency of occurrence in music would significantly affect cognitive processes, in particular pitch learning and evaluation. Two experiments were designed to test this hypothesis in participants with no absolute pitch, most with little or no musical training. Experiment 1 demonstrated a faster response and a learning advantage for frequent pitches over infrequent pitches in an identification task. In Experiment 2, participants evaluated infrequent pitches as more pleasing than frequent pitches when presented in isolation. These results suggest that absolute pitch representation in memory may play a substantial, hitherto unacknowledged role in auditory (and specifically musical) cognition. PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved.
Larson Charles R
Full Text Available Abstract Background The motor-driven predictions about expected sensory feedback (efference copies have been proposed to play an important role in recognition of sensory consequences of self-produced motor actions. In the auditory system, this effect was suggested to result in suppression of sensory neural responses to self-produced voices that are predicted by the efference copies during vocal production in comparison with passive listening to the playback of the identical self-vocalizations. In the present study, event-related potentials (ERPs were recorded in response to upward pitch shift stimuli (PSS with five different magnitudes (0, +50, +100, +200 and +400 cents at voice onset during active vocal production and passive listening to the playback. Results Results indicated that the suppression of the N1 component during vocal production was largest for unaltered voice feedback (PSS: 0 cents, became smaller as the magnitude of PSS increased to 200 cents, and was almost completely eliminated in response to 400 cents stimuli. Conclusions Findings of the present study suggest that the brain utilizes the motor predictions (efference copies to determine the source of incoming stimuli and maximally suppresses the auditory responses to unaltered feedback of self-vocalizations. The reduction of suppression for 50, 100 and 200 cents and its elimination for 400 cents pitch-shifted voice auditory feedback support the idea that motor-driven suppression of voice feedback leads to distinctly different sensory neural processing of self vs. non-self vocalizations. This characteristic may enable the audio-vocal system to more effectively detect and correct for unexpected errors in the feedback of self-produced voice pitch compared with externally-generated sounds.
Behroozmand, Roozbeh; Larson, Charles R
The motor-driven predictions about expected sensory feedback (efference copies) have been proposed to play an important role in recognition of sensory consequences of self-produced motor actions. In the auditory system, this effect was suggested to result in suppression of sensory neural responses to self-produced voices that are predicted by the efference copies during vocal production in comparison with passive listening to the playback of the identical self-vocalizations. In the present study, event-related potentials (ERPs) were recorded in response to upward pitch shift stimuli (PSS) with five different magnitudes (0, +50, +100, +200 and +400 cents) at voice onset during active vocal production and passive listening to the playback. Results indicated that the suppression of the N1 component during vocal production was largest for unaltered voice feedback (PSS: 0 cents), became smaller as the magnitude of PSS increased to 200 cents, and was almost completely eliminated in response to 400 cents stimuli. Findings of the present study suggest that the brain utilizes the motor predictions (efference copies) to determine the source of incoming stimuli and maximally suppresses the auditory responses to unaltered feedback of self-vocalizations. The reduction of suppression for 50, 100 and 200 cents and its elimination for 400 cents pitch-shifted voice auditory feedback support the idea that motor-driven suppression of voice feedback leads to distinctly different sensory neural processing of self vs. non-self vocalizations. This characteristic may enable the audio-vocal system to more effectively detect and correct for unexpected errors in the feedback of self-produced voice pitch compared with externally-generated sounds.
Full Text Available The building constructions investigated in this work are pitched wooden roofs with exterior vertical drainpipes and wooden load-bearing system. The aim of this research is to further investigate the building defects of pitched wooden roofs and obtain an overview of typical roof defects. The work involves an analysis of the building defect archive from the research institute SINTEF Building and Infrastructure. The findings from the SINTEF archive show that moisture is a dominant exposure factor, especially in roof constructions. In pitched wooden roofs, more than half of the defects are caused by deficiencies in design, materials, or workmanship, where these deficiencies allow moisture from precipitation or indoor moisture into the structure. Hence, it is important to increase the focus on robust and durable solutions to avoid defects both from exterior and interior moisture sources in pitched wooden roofs. Proper design of interior ventilation and vapour retarders seem to be the main ways to control entry from interior moisture sources into attic and roof spaces.
Vanzella, Patrícia; Schellenberg, E Glenn
Absolute pitch (AP) is the ability to identify or produce isolated musical tones. It is evident primarily among individuals who started music lessons in early childhood. Because AP requires memory for specific pitches as well as learned associations with verbal labels (i.e., note names), it represents a unique opportunity to study interactions in memory between linguistic and nonlinguistic information. One untested hypothesis is that the pitch of voices may be difficult for AP possessors to identify. A musician's first instrument may also affect performance and extend the sensitive period for acquiring accurate AP. A large sample of AP possessors was recruited on-line. Participants were required to identity test tones presented in four different timbres: piano, pure tone, natural (sung) voice, and synthesized voice. Note-naming accuracy was better for non-vocal (piano and pure tones) than for vocal (natural and synthesized voices) test tones. This difference could not be attributed solely to vibrato (pitch variation), which was more pronounced in the natural voice than in the synthesized voice. Although starting music lessons by age 7 was associated with enhanced note-naming accuracy, equivalent abilities were evident among listeners who started music lessons on piano at a later age. Because the human voice is inextricably linked to language and meaning, it may be processed automatically by voice-specific mechanisms that interfere with note naming among AP possessors. Lessons on piano or other fixed-pitch instruments appear to enhance AP abilities and to extend the sensitive period for exposure to music in order to develop accurate AP.
Full Text Available Absolute pitch (AP is the ability to identify or produce isolated musical tones. It is evident primarily among individuals who started music lessons in early childhood. Because AP requires memory for specific pitches as well as learned associations with verbal labels (i.e., note names, it represents a unique opportunity to study interactions in memory between linguistic and nonlinguistic information. One untested hypothesis is that the pitch of voices may be difficult for AP possessors to identify. A musician's first instrument may also affect performance and extend the sensitive period for acquiring accurate AP.A large sample of AP possessors was recruited on-line. Participants were required to identity test tones presented in four different timbres: piano, pure tone, natural (sung voice, and synthesized voice. Note-naming accuracy was better for non-vocal (piano and pure tones than for vocal (natural and synthesized voices test tones. This difference could not be attributed solely to vibrato (pitch variation, which was more pronounced in the natural voice than in the synthesized voice. Although starting music lessons by age 7 was associated with enhanced note-naming accuracy, equivalent abilities were evident among listeners who started music lessons on piano at a later age.Because the human voice is inextricably linked to language and meaning, it may be processed automatically by voice-specific mechanisms that interfere with note naming among AP possessors. Lessons on piano or other fixed-pitch instruments appear to enhance AP abilities and to extend the sensitive period for exposure to music in order to develop accurate AP.
Tillmann, Barbara; Burnham, Denis; Nguyen, Sebastien; Grimault, Nicolas; Gosselin, Nathalie; Peretz, Isabelle
Congenital amusia is a neurogenetic disorder that affects music processing and that is ascribed to a deficit in pitch processing. We investigated whether this deficit extended to pitch processing in speech, notably the pitch changes used to contrast lexical tones in tonal languages. Congenital amusics and matched controls, all non-tonal language speakers, were tested for lexical tone discrimination in Mandarin Chinese (Experiment 1) and in Thai (Experiment 2). Tones were presented in pairs an...
Barrreto-Munévar, Deisy P; Cháux-Ramos, Oriana M; Estrada-Rangel, Mónica A; Sánchez-Morales, Jenifer; Moreno-Angarita, Marisol; Camargo-Mendoza, Maryluz
Determining the relationship between vocal habits and environmental/ occupational conditions with the presence of vocal disturbance (dysphonia) in teachers and functionaries working at community-based, initial childhood education centres (kindergartens). This was a descriptive study which adopted across-sectional approach using 198 participants which was developed in three phases. Phase 1: consisted of identifying participants having the highest risk of presenting vocal disturbance. Phase 2consisted of observation-analysis concerning the voice use and vocal habits of participants who had been identified in phase 1. Phase 3consisted of perceptual and computational assessment of participants' voices using Wilson's vocal profile and the multidimensional voice program. Individuals having pitch breaks, throat clearing, increased voice intensity, and gastro-oesophageal reflux were found to present below standard fundamental frequency (FF). Subjects having altered breathing and increased voice intensity were identified as having above standard shimmer and jitter acoustic values. A high rate of inability to work was found due to vocal disturbance. It is thus suggested that there is a correlation between vocal habits and vocal disorders presented by preschool teachers in kindergarten settings.
Kanazawa, Takeharu; Komazawa, Daigo; Indo, Kanako; Akagi, Yusuke; Lee, Yogaku; Nakamura, Kazuhiro; Matsushima, Koji; Kunieda, Chikako; Misawa, Kiyoshi; Nishino, Hiroshi; Watanabe, Yusuke
Severe vocal fold lesions such as vocal fold sulcus, scars, and atrophy induce a communication disorder due to severe hoarseness, but a treatment has not been established. Basic fibroblast growth factor (bFGF) therapies by either four-time repeated local injections or regenerative surgery for vocal fold scar and sulcus have previously been reported, and favorable outcomes have been observed. In this study, we modified bFGF therapy using a single of bFGF injection, which may potentially be used in office procedures. Retrospective chart review. Five cases of vocal fold sulcus, six cases of scars, seven cases of paralysis, and 17 cases of atrophy were treated by a local injection of bFGF. The injection regimen involved injecting 50 µg of bFGF dissolved in 0.5 mL saline only once into the superficial lamina propria using a 23-gauge injection needle. Two months to 3 months after the injection, phonological outcomes were evaluated. The maximum phonation time (MPT), mean airflow rate, pitch range, speech fundamental frequency, jitter, and voice handicap index improved significantly after the bFGF injection. Furthermore, improvement in the MPT was significantly greater in patients with (in increasing order) vocal fold atrophy, scar, and paralysis. The improvement in the MPT among all patients was significantly correlated with age; the MPT improved more greatly in younger patients. Regenerative treatments by bFGF injection—even a single injection—effectively improve vocal function in vocal fold lesions. 4 © 2015 The American Laryngological, Rhinological and Otological Society, Inc.
Santurette, Sébastien; Dau, Torsten
The effects of hearing impairment on the perception of binaural-pitch stimuli were investigated. Several experiments were performed with normal-hearing and hearing-impaired listeners, including detection and discrimination of binaural pitch, and melody recognition using different types of binaural...... pitches. For the normal-hearing listeners, all types of binaural pitches could be perceived immediately and were musical. The hearing-impaired listeners could be divided into three groups based on their results: (a) some perceived all types of binaural pitches, but with decreased salience or musicality...... compared to normal-hearing listeners; (b) some could only perceive the strongest pitch types; (c) some were unable to perceive any binaural pitch at all. The performance of the listeners was not correlated with audibility. Additional experiments investigated the correlation between performance in binaural...
Ngo, Mary Kim; Vu, Kim-Phuong L; Strybel, Thomas Z
We examined the interaction between music and tone language experience as related to relative pitch processing by having participants judge the direction and magnitude of pitch changes in a relative pitch task. Participants' performance on this relative pitch task was assessed using the Cochran-Weiss-Shanteau (CWS) index of expertise, based on a ratio of discrimination over consistency in participants' relative pitch judgments. Testing took place in 2 separate sessions on different days to assess the effects of practice on participants' performance. Participants also completed the Montreal Battery of Evaluation of Amusia (MBEA), an existing measure comprising subtests aimed at evaluating relative pitch processing abilities. Musicians outperformed nonmusicians on both the relative pitch task, as measured by the CWS index, and the MBEA, but tonal language speakers outperformed non-tonal language speakers only on the MBEA. A closer look at the discrimination and consistency component scores of the CWS index revealed that musicians were better at discriminating different pitches and more consistent in their assessments of the direction and magnitude of relative pitch change.
Stevens, Catherine J.; Keller, Peter E.; Tyler, Michael D.
An experiment investigated the effect of tonal language background on discrimination of pitch contour in short spoken and musical items. It was hypothesized that extensive exposure to a tonal language attunes perception of pitch contour. Accuracy and reaction times of adult participants from tonal (Thai) and non-tonal (Australian English) language…
Roberta Werlang Isolan-Cury
Full Text Available OBJETIVO: Caracterizar a qualidade vocal, por meio de análise computadorizada e perceptivo-auditiva, de pacientes com hipertireoidismo (grupo A e hipotireoidismo (grupo B. MÉTODOS: Vinte mulheres não fumantes, com idades entre 18 e 55 anos, atendidas no Ambulatório de Endocrinologia da instituição, foram avaliadas após o diagnóstico clínico e laboratorial de hipertireoidismo ou hipotireoidismo. Os parâmetros investigados foram: tempo da doença, presença de queixa vocal, tempos máximos de fonação /a/, /s/ e /z/, freqüência fundamental (F0, ruído glótico (GNE. Os aspectos avaliados na análise perceptivo-auditiva, foram: coordenação pneumo-fonoarticulatória (coordenada ou incoordenada, pitch, loudness, ataque vocal, ressonância, velocidade de fala e qualidade vocal, que poderia ter até duas das seguintes classificações: neutra, rouca, soprosa, áspera ou tensa, e grau: leve, moderado ou severo. Os dados foram tabulados e analisados estatisticamente através do programa EPI-INFO 6.04b, método qualitativo Fisher, com nível de significância menor do que 0.05. RESULTADOS: A análise perceptivo-auditiva mostrou que sete pacientes hipotireoideos e nove pacientes hipertireoideos apresentaram alteração na qualidade vocal. Oito pacientes em ambos os grupos apresentaram incoordenação pneumo-fonoarticulatória. Oito pacientes do grupo A e seis pacientes do grupo B referiam queixas vocais como rouquidão e voz grossa, respectivamente. Na análise acústica, nove pacientes apresentaram o ruído glótico alterado. CONCLUSÃO: Os resultados evidenciaram grande incidência de alteração vocal nos grupos estudados (grupos dos pacientes com hipertireoidismo e com hipotireoidismo, o que demonstra a relação entre disfonia e disfunções tireoideanas.PURPOSE: To characterize the vocal quality of subjects with hyperthyroidism (group A, and hypothyroidism (group B through a computer-aided and auditory-perceptive analysis. METHODS
Full Text Available Budgerigars were trained by operant conditioning to produce contact calls immediately after hearing a stimulus contact call. In Experiments 1 and 2, playback stimuli were chosen from two different contact call classes from the bird’s repertoire. Once this task was learned, the birds were then tested with other probe stimulus calls from its repertoire, which differed from the original calls drawn from the two classes. Birds failed to mimic the probe stimuli but instead produced one of the two call classes as in the training sessions, showing that birds learned that each stimulus call served as a discriminative stimulus but not as a vocal template for imitation. In Experiment 3, birds were then trained with stimulus calls falling along a 24-step acoustic gradient which varied between the two sounds representing the two contact call categories. As before, birds obtained a reward when the bird’s vocalization matched that of the stimulus above a criterion level. Since the first step and the last step in the gradient were the birds’ original contact calls, these two patterns were easily matched. Intermediate contact calls in the gradient were much harder for the birds to match. After extensive training, one bird learned to produce contact calls that had only a modest similarity to the intermediate contact calls along the gradient. In spite of remarkable vocal plasticity under natural conditions, operant conditioning methods with budgerigars, even after extensive training and rigorous control of vocal discriminative stimuli, failed to show vocal learning.
Granados, Alba; Brunskog, Jonas; Misztal, M. K.
When vocal folds vibrate at normal speaking frequencies, collisions occurs. The numerics and formulations behind a position-based continuum model of contact is an active field of research in the contact mechanics community. In this paper, a frictionless three-dimensional finite element model...
... Viral infections. Some viral infections, such as Lyme disease, Epstein-Barr and herpes, can cause inflammation and damage directly to the nerves in the larynx. Neurological conditions. If you have certain ... disease, you may experience vocal cord paralysis. Risk factors ...
Sartoni Galloni, S.; Miceli, M.; Lipparino, M.; Burzi, M.; Gigli, F.; Rossi, M.S.; Santoli, G.; Guidarelli, G.
In Spiral CT, the pitch is the ratio of the distance to tabletop travels per 360 degrees rotation to nominal slice width, expressed in mm. Performing Spiral CT examination with pitch 2 allows to reduce examination time, exposure and contrast dose, and X-ray tube overload. The authors investigated the yield of pitch 2 in lung parenchyma studies, particular relative to diagnostic image quality [it
Nikkhah-Bahrami, Mansour; Ahmadi-Noubari, Hossein; Seyed Aghazadeh, Babak; Khadivi Heris, Hossein
This paper explores the use of hierarchical structure for diagnosis of vocal fold disorders. The hierarchical structure is initially used to train different second-level classifiers. At the first level normal and pathological signals have been distinguished. Next, pathological signals have been classified into neurogenic and organic vocal fold disorders. At the final level, vocal fold nodules have been distinguished from polyps in organic disorders category. For feature selection at each level of hierarchy, the reconstructed signal at each wavelet packet decomposition sub-band in 5 levels of decomposition with mother wavelet of (db10) is used to extract the nonlinear features of self-similarity and approximate entropy. Also, wavelet packet coefficients are used to measure energy and Shannon entropy features at different spectral sub-bands. Davies-Bouldin criterion has been employed to find the most discriminant features. Finally, support vector machines have been adopted as classifiers at each level of hierarchy resulting in the diagnosis accuracy of 92%.
Ben-Haim, Moshe Shay; Eitan, Zohar; Chajut, Eran
Recent studies indicate that the ability to represent absolute pitch values in long-term memory (LTM), long believed to be the possession of a small minority of trained musicians endowed with "absolute pitch" (AP), is in fact shared to some extent by a considerable proportion of the population. The current study examined whether this newly-discovered ability affects aspects of music and auditory cognition, particularly pitch learning and evaluation. Our starting points are two well establishe...
Tateya, Ichiro; Hirano, Shigeru; Kishimoto, Yo; Suehiro, Atsushi; Kojima, Tsuyohi; Ohno, Satoshi; Ito, Juichi
Medialization thyroplasty was effective in improving swallowing function as well as vocal function in most cases with unilateral vocal fold paralysis. The impact of medialization thryoplasty was insufficient for the case with severe atrophy and that in which the vocal fold was fixed in the lateral position. To evaluate the impacts and limitations of medialization thyroplasty on swallowing function of the patients with unilateral vocal fold paralysis. Eight cases (mean age 68.5 years) with unilateral vocal fold paralysis chiefly complaining of swallowing disturbance were studied. All patients underwent thyroplasty type I. The causes of the paralysis were lung cancer in four cases, esophageal cancer in one case, aortic aneurysm in one case, subarachnoid hemorrhage in one case, and unknown in one case. Subjective swallowing function score, maximum phonation time (MPT), mean flow rate (MFR), amplitude perturbation quotient (APQ), and pitch perturbation quotient (PPQ) were examined pre- and postoperatively. The swallowing score improved in all except two cases. However, bilateral thryoplasty was necessary for the case with severe vocal fold atrophy and arytenoid adduction was needed for the case in which the vocal fold was fixed in the lateral position. The swallowing score, MPT, and MFR showed significant improvement after surgery.
Williamson, Victoria J; McDonald, Claire; Deutsch, Diana; Griffiths, Timothy D; Stewart, Lauren
Congenital amusia (amusia, hereafter) is a developmental disorder that impacts negatively on the perception of music. Psychophysical testing suggests that individuals with amusia have above average thresholds for detection of pitch change and pitch direction discrimination; however, a low-level auditory perceptual problem cannot completely explain the disorder, since discrimination of melodies is also impaired when the constituent intervals are suprathreshold for perception. The aim of the present study was to test pitch memory as a function of (a) time and (b) tonal interference, in order to determine whether pitch traces are inherently weaker in amusic individuals. Memory for the pitch of single tones was compared using two versions of a paradigm developed by Deutsch (1970a). In both tasks, participants compared the pitch of a standard (S) versus a comparison (C) tone. In the time task, the S and C tones were presented, separated in time by 0, 1, 5, 10, and 15 s (blocked presentation). In the interference task, the S and C tones were presented with a fixed time interval (5 s) but with a variable number of irrelevant tones in between 0, 2, 4, 6, and 8 tones (blocked presentation). In the time task, control performance remained high for all time intervals, but amusics showed a performance decrement over time. In the interference task, controls and amusics showed a similar performance decrement with increasing number of irrelevant tones. Overall, the results suggest that the pitch representations of amusic individuals are less stable and more prone to decay than those of matched non-amusic individuals.
Meyers, M C; Brown, B R; Bloom, J A
The popularity of fast pitch softball in the US and throughout the world is well documented. Along with this popularity, there has been a concomitant increase in the number of injuries. Nearly 52% of cases qualify as major disabling injuries requiring 3 weeks or more of treatment and 2% require surgery. Interestingly, 75% of injuries occur during away games and approximately 31% of traumas occur during nonpositional and conditioning drills. Injuries range from contusions and tendinitis to ligamentous disorders and fractures. Although head and neck traumas account for 4 to 12% of cases, upper extremity traumas account for 23 to 47% of all injuries and up to 19% of cases involve the knee. Approximately 34 to 42% of injuries occur when the athlete collides with another individual or object. Other factors involved include the quality of playing surface, athlete's age and experience level, and the excessive physical demands associated with the sport. Nearly 24% of injuries involve base running and are due to poor judgement, sliding technique, current stationary base design, unorthodox joint and extremity position during ground impact and catching of cleats. The increasing prevalence of overtraining syndrome among athletes has been attributed to an unclear definition of an optimal training zone, poor communication between player and coach, and the limited ability of bone and connective tissue to quickly respond to match the demands of the sport. This has led routinely to arm, shoulder and lumbar instability, chronic nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) use and time loss injuries in 45% of pitching staff during a single season. Specific attention to a safer playing environment, coaching and player education, and sport-specific training and conditioning would reduce the risk, rate and severity of fast pitch traumas. Padding of walls, backstops, rails and dugout areas, as well as minimising use of indoor facilities, is suggested to decrease the number of collision
Dohn, Anders; Garza-Villarreal, Eduardo A.; Ribe, Lars Riisgaard
Absolute pitch (AP) is the ability to identify or produce pitches of musical tones without an external reference. Active AP (i.e., pitch production or pitch adjustment) and passive AP (i.e., pitch identification) are considered to not necessarily coincide, although no study has properly compared...
Mumović Gordana; Veselinović Mila; Arbutina Tanja; Škrbić Renata
Introduction. Hyperkinetic (hyperfunctional) dysphonia is a common pathology. The disorder is often found in vocal professionals faced with high vocal requirements. Objective. The objective of this study was to evaluate the effects of vocal therapy on voice condition characterized by hyperkinetic dysphonia with prenodular lesions and soft nodules. Methods. The study included 100 adult patients and 27 children aged 4-16 years with prenodular lesions and soft...
Modi, Vikash K
Unilateral vocal fold paralysis (UVFP) can cause glottic insufficiency that can result in hoarseness, chronic cough, dysphagia, and/or aspiration. In rare circumstances, UVFP can cause airway obstruction necessitating a tracheostomy. The treatment options for UVFP include observation, speech therapy, vocal fold injection medialization laryngoplasty, thyroplasty, and laryngeal reinnervation. In this chapter, the author will discuss the technique of vocal fold injection for medialization of a UVFP. Copyright © 2012 S. Karger AG, Basel.
Niebudek-Bogusz, Ewa; Kotyło, Piotr; Sliwińska-Kowalska, Mariola
Teachers are at risk of developing voice disorders. A clinical battery of vocal function tests should include non-invasive and accurate measurements. The quantitative methods (e.g., voice acoustic analysis) make it possible to objectively evaluate voice efficiency and outcomes of dysphonia treatment. To identify possible signs of vocal fatigue, acoustic waveform perturbations during sustained phonation were measured before and after the vocal-loading test in 51 professionally active female teachers with functional voice disorders, using IRIS software. All the participants were also subjected to laryngological/phoniatric examination involving videostroboscopy combined with self-estimation by voice handicap index (VHI)-based scale. The phoniatric examination revealed glottal insufficiency with bowed vocal folds in 35.2%, soft vocal nodules in 31.4%, and hyperfunctional dysphonia with a tendency towards vestibular phonation in 19.6% of the patients. In the VHI scale, 66% of the female teachers estimated their own voice problems as moderate disability. An acoustic analysis performed after the vocal-loading test showed an increased rate of abnormal frequency perturbation parameters (pitch perturbation quotient (Jitter), relative average perturbation (RAP), and pitch period perturbation quotient (PPQ)) compared to the pre-test outcomes. The same was true of pitch-intensity contour of vowel /a:/, an indication of voice instability during sustained phonation. The recorded impairments of voice acoustic parameters related to vocal loading provide further evidence of dysphonia. The voice acoustic analysis performed before and after the vocal-loading test can significantly contribute to objective voice examinations useful in diagnosis of dysphonia among teachers.
Nguyen, Duong Duy; Kenny, Dianna T
This study evaluated the treatment effects of vocal function exercises on muscle tension dysphonia (MTD) in tonal language speakers. Single-blinded, randomized, controlled, clinical trial. Forty female primary school teachers from Northern Vietnam, diagnosed with MTD, were randomly allocated into a treatment group (n = 22), which used a full vocal exercise protocol (FE) (modified for use with Vietnamese speakers), and a control group (n = 18) which was treated with a partial vocal exercise protocol (PE). The treatment duration was 4 weeks for both groups. Acoustic and perceptual data were used as primary outcome measures. Acoustic parameters included frequency and amplitude perturbation, harmonics-to-noise ratio (HNR), mean fundamental frequency of the broken and rising tones, and parameters representing pitch movement in the rising tone. Perceptual analyses were performed on pre- and posttreatment samples of the sustained /a/ sound using anchor vocal samples. Self-report data, collected via a posttreatment questionnaire, comprised the secondary outcome measure. Significant changes in perturbation, HNR, and perceptual data were observed in the FE group but not in the PE group. The FE group showed increased size and speed of pitch change. Participants from both groups showed positive changes in some tonal parameters after treatment. However, the magnitude of change and the number of participants with positive changes were larger in the FE group. The data showed that vocal function exercises may be a cost-effective treatment for MTD.
Katlowitz, Kalman A; Oya, Hiroyuki; Howard, Matthew A; Greenlee, Jeremy D W; Long, Michael A
The production and perception of music is preferentially mediated by cortical areas within the right hemisphere, but little is known about how these brain regions individually contribute to this process. In an experienced singer undergoing awake craniotomy, we demonstrated that direct electrical stimulation to a portion of the right posterior superior temporal gyrus (pSTG) selectively interrupted singing but not speaking. We then focally cooled this region to modulate its activity during vocalization. In contrast to similar manipulations in left hemisphere speech production regions, pSTG cooling did not elicit any changes in vocal timing or quality. However, this manipulation led to an increase in the pitch of speaking with no such change in singing. Further analysis revealed that all vocalizations exhibited a cooling-induced increase in the frequency of the first formant, raising the possibility that potential pitch offsets may have been actively avoided during singing. Our results suggest that the right pSTG plays a key role in vocal sensorimotor processing whose impact is dependent on the type of vocalization produced. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
This study reports how hippocampal individual cells and cell assemblies cooperate for neural coding of pitch and temporal information in memory processes for auditory stimuli. Each rat performed two tasks, one requiring discrimination of auditory pitch (high or low) and the other requiring discrimination of their duration (long or short). Some CA1 and CA3 complex-spike neurons showed task-related differential activity between the high and low tones in only the pitch-discrimination task. However, without exception, neurons which showed task-related differential activity between the long and short tones in the duration-discrimination task were always task-related neurons in the pitch-discrimination task. These results suggest that temporal information (long or short), in contrast to pitch information (high or low), cannot be coded independently by specific neurons. The results also indicate that the two different behavioral tasks cannot be fully differentiated by the task-related single neurons alone and suggest a model of cell-assembly coding of the tasks. Cross-correlation analysis among activities of simultaneously recorded multiple neurons supported the suggested cell-assembly model.Considering those results, this study concludes that dual coding by hippocampal single neurons and cell assemblies is working in memory processing of pitch and temporal information of auditory stimuli. The single neurons encode both auditory pitches and their temporal lengths and the cell assemblies encode types of tasks (contexts or situations) in which the pitch and the temporal information are processed.
Klofstad, Casey A; Anderson, Rindy C; Peters, Susan
It is well known that non-human animals respond to information encoded in vocal signals, and the same can be said of humans. Specifically, human voice pitch affects how speakers are perceived. As such, does voice pitch affect how we perceive and select our leaders? To answer this question, we recorded men and women saying 'I urge you to vote for me this November'. Each recording was manipulated digitally to yield a higher- and lower-pitched version of the original. We then asked men and women to vote for either the lower- or higher-pitched version of each voice. Our results show that both men and women select male and female leaders with lower voices. These findings suggest that men and women with lower-pitched voices may be more successful in obtaining positions of leadership. This might also suggest that because women, on average, have higher-pitched voices than men, voice pitch could be a factor that contributes to fewer women holding leadership roles than men. Additionally, while people are free to choose their leaders, these results clearly demonstrate that these choices cannot be understood in isolation from biological influences.
Liu, Fang; Patel, Aniruddh D; Fourcin, Adrian; Stewart, Lauren
This study investigated whether congenital amusia, a neuro-developmental disorder of musical perception, also has implications for speech intonation processing. In total, 16 British amusics and 16 matched controls completed five intonation perception tasks and two pitch threshold tasks. Compared with controls, amusics showed impaired performance on discrimination, identification and imitation of statements and questions that were characterized primarily by pitch direction differences in the final word. This intonation-processing deficit in amusia was largely associated with a psychophysical pitch direction discrimination deficit. These findings suggest that amusia impacts upon one's language abilities in subtle ways, and support previous evidence that pitch processing in language and music involves shared mechanisms.
Shah, Jay; White, Katherine; Dohar, Joseph
This case report describes a 5-year-old girl with chronic dysphonia and high-pitched voice since birth. Vocal quality was noted to be harsh. Videostroboscopy revealed significant hyperfunction and a Type II congenital anterior glottic web. Endoscopic division of the anterior glottic web was performed with significant improvement in vocal quality and quality of life. This paper describes methods of analyzing, diagnosing, and treating anterior glottic web with a focus on quality of life. Also, unique acoustic and aerodynamic voice features are identified. No other descriptions of a voice characteristic for anterior glottic web currently exist in the literature. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.
El Amine Abderrahim, Med; Breksi Reguig, Fethi
This research has been to show the realization of a morphological analyzer of the Arabic language (vocalized or not vocalized). This analyzer is based upon our object model for the Arabic Natural Language Processing (NLP) and can be exploited by NLP applications such as translation machine, orthographical correction and the search for information.
Nguyen, Duong Duy; Kenny, Dianna T
Muscle tension dysphonia (MTD) is a voice disorder with deteriorated vocal quality, particularly pitch problems. Because pitch is mainly controlled by the laryngeal muscles, and because MTD is characterized by increased laryngeal muscle tension, we hypothesized that it may result in problems in pitch target implementation in tonal languages. We examined tonal samples of 42 Vietnamese female primary school teachers diagnosed with MTD and compared them with 30 vocally healthy female teachers who spoke the same dialect. Tonal data were analyzed using Computerized Speech Lab (CSL-4300B) for Windows. From tonal sampling bases, fundamental frequency (F0) was measured at target points specified by contour examination. Parameters representing pitch movement including time, size, and speed of movement were measured for the falling tone and rising tone. We found that F0 at target points in MTD group was lowered in most tones, especially tones with extensive F0 variation. In MTD group, target F0 of the broken tone in isolation was 37.5 Hz lower (P<0.01) and target F0 of rising tone in isolation was 46 Hz lower (P<0.01) than in control group. In MTD group, speed of pitch fall of the falling tone in isolation was faster than control group by 2.2 semitones/second (st/s) (P<0.05) and speed of pitch rise in the rising tone in isolation was slower than control group by 7.2 st/s (P<0.01). These results demonstrate that MTD is associated with problems in tonal pitch variation.
Lau, Bonnie K; Werner, Lynne A
Three-month-olds discriminate resolved harmonic complexes on the basis of missing fundamental (MF) pitch. In view of reported difficulty in discriminating unresolved complexes at 7 months and striking changes in the organization of the auditory system during early infancy, infants' ability to discriminate unresolved complexes is of some interest. This study investigated the ability of 3-month-olds, 7-month-olds, and adults to discriminate the pitch of unresolved harmonic complexes using an observer-based method. Stimuli were MF complexes bandpass filtered with a -12 dB/octave slope, combined in random phase, presented at 70 dB sound pressure level (SPL) for 650 ms with a 50 ms rise/fall with a pink noise at 65 dB SPL. The conditions were (1) "LOW" unresolved harmonics (2500-4500 Hz) based on MFs of 160 and 200 Hz and (2) "HIGH" unresolved harmonics (4000-6000 Hz) based on MFs of 190 and 200 Hz. To demonstrate MF discrimination, participants had to ignore spectral changes in complexes with the same fundamental and respond only when the fundamental changed. Nearly all infants tested categorized complexes by MF pitch suggesting discrimination of pitch extracted from unresolved harmonics by 3 months. Adults also categorized the complexes by MF pitch, although musically trained adults were more successful than musically untrained adults.
Furuyama, Takafumi; Kobayasi, Kohta I; Riquimaroux, Hiroshi
The vocalizations of primates contain information about speaker individuality. Many primates, including humans, are able to distinguish conspecifics based solely on vocalizations. The purpose of this study was to investigate the acoustic characteristics used by Japanese macaques in individual vocal discrimination. Furthermore, we tested human subjects using monkey vocalizations to evaluate species specificity with respect to such discriminations. Two monkeys and five humans were trained to discriminate the coo calls of two unfamiliar monkeys. We created a stimulus continuum between the vocalizations of the two monkeys as a set of probe stimuli (whole morph). We also created two sets of continua in which only one acoustic parameter, fundamental frequency ( f 0 ) or vocal tract characteristic (VTC), was changed from the coo call of one monkey to that of another while the other acoustic feature remained the same ( f 0 morph and VTC morph, respectively). According to the results, the reaction times both of monkeys and humans were correlated with the morph proportion under the whole morph and f 0 morph conditions. The reaction time to the VTC morph was correlated with the morph proportion in both monkeys, whereas the reaction time in humans, on average, was not correlated with morph proportion. Japanese monkeys relied more consistently on VTC than did humans for discriminating monkey vocalizations. Our results support the idea that the auditory system of primates is specialized for processing conspecific vocalizations and suggest that VTC is a significant acoustic feature used by Japanese macaques to discriminate conspecific vocalizations. © 2017. Published by The Company of Biologists Ltd.
Fukushima, Makoto; Saunders, Richard C; Leopold, David A; Mishkin, Mortimer; Averbeck, Bruno B
The mammalian auditory cortex integrates spectral and temporal acoustic features to support the perception of complex sounds, including conspecific vocalizations. Here we investigate coding of vocal stimuli in different subfields in macaque auditory cortex. We simultaneously measured auditory evoked potentials over a large swath of primary and higher order auditory cortex along the supratemporal plane in three animals chronically using high-density microelectrocorticographic arrays. To evaluate the capacity of neural activity to discriminate individual stimuli in these high-dimensional datasets, we applied a regularized multivariate classifier to evoked potentials to conspecific vocalizations. We found a gradual decrease in the level of overall classification performance along the caudal to rostral axis. Furthermore, the performance in the caudal sectors was similar across individual stimuli, whereas the performance in the rostral sectors significantly differed for different stimuli. Moreover, the information about vocalizations in the caudal sectors was similar to the information about synthetic stimuli that contained only the spectral or temporal features of the original vocalizations. In the rostral sectors, however, the classification for vocalizations was significantly better than that for the synthetic stimuli, suggesting that conjoined spectral and temporal features were necessary to explain differential coding of vocalizations in the rostral areas. We also found that this coding in the rostral sector was carried primarily in the theta frequency band of the response. These findings illustrate a progression in neural coding of conspecific vocalizations along the ventral auditory pathway.
Zhang, Heming; Chen, Xuhai; Chen, Shengdong; Li, Yansong; Chen, Changming; Long, Quanshan; Yuan, Jiajin
Facial and vocal expressions are essential modalities mediating the perception of emotion and social communication. Nonetheless, currently little is known about how emotion perception and its neural substrates differ across facial expression and vocal prosody. To clarify this issue, functional MRI scans were acquired in Study 1, in which participants were asked to discriminate the valence of emotional expression (angry, happy or neutral) from facial, vocal, or bimodal stimuli. In Study 2, we used an affective priming task (unimodal materials as primers and bimodal materials as target) and participants were asked to rate the intensity, valence, and arousal of the targets. Study 1 showed higher accuracy and shorter response latencies in the facial than in the vocal modality for a happy expression. Whole-brain analysis showed enhanced activation during facial compared to vocal emotions in the inferior temporal-occipital regions. Region of interest analysis showed a higher percentage signal change for facial than for vocal anger in the superior temporal sulcus. Study 2 showed that facial relative to vocal priming of anger had a greater influence on perceived emotion for bimodal targets, irrespective of the target valence. These findings suggest that facial expression is associated with enhanced emotion perception compared to equivalent vocal prosodies.
Noyes, Blakeslee E; Kemp, James S
Vocal cord dysfunction is characterised by paradoxical vocal cord adduction that occurs during inspiration, resulting in symptoms of dyspnoea, wheeze, chest or throat tightness and cough. Although the condition is well described in children and adults, confusion with asthma often triggers the use of an aggressive treatment regimen directed against asthma. The laryngoscopic demonstration of vocal cord adduction during inspiration has been considered the gold standard for the diagnosis of vocal cord dysfunction, but historical factors and pulmonary function findings may provide adequate clues to the correct diagnosis. Speech therapy, and in some cases psychological counselling, is often beneficial in this disorder. The natural course and prognosis of vocal cord dysfunction are still not well described in adults or children.
Full Text Available OBJETIVO: descrever a qualidade vocal de personagens idosos dos filmes de Hollywood. MÉTODOS: foram colhidas 50 amostras de fala de personagens idosos, 11 do sexo feminino e 39 do masculino, de 38 filmes hollywoodianos dos anos de 1993 a 2001. Através da análise perceptivo-auditiva das amostras de fala, 20 fonoaudiólogos treinados classificaram cada personagem em idoso e não idoso, além de avaliarem as vozes quanto aos seguintes parâmetros citados pela literatura como mais alterados: rouquidão, crepitação, soprosidade, tensão, aspereza, astenia, nasalidade, tremor, modulação, pitch e estabilidade da frequência fundamental. RESULTADOS: após a análise perceptivo-auditiva, foi observado que a grande maioria dos atores (82% utilizou voz de idoso para representar seus papéis. O marcador mais evidente nas vozes foi alteração na qualidade vocal (92%, demonstrada por crepitação (80%, soprosidade (54%, tensão (38%, rouquidão (30% e astenia (28%. O segundo marcador mais utilizado pelos atores nas suas representações foi a modulação vocal ampla e variada (44%. Também foram observadas alterações no controle da voz (36% e instabilidade da frequência fundamental (38%. CONCLUSÃO: a partir dos resultados obtidos pode-se concluir que os filmes de Hollywood caracterizam o idoso através de desvios evidentes na qualidade e modulação da voz, utilizando tipos de vozes alteradas e modulação vocal ampla e instável.PURPOSE: to describe the vocal quality of Hollywood movies characters playing elderly people roles. METHODS: a total of 50 aged character voice samples were used, 11 female and 39 male, from 38 Hollywood movies from the period between 1993 and 2001. Twenty speech therapists performed a perceptual auditory analysis. The listener's task required classifying each character either as elderly or as adult by their speech features, and also assessing their voices following the parameters that are most frequently addressed in the
Vuvan, Dominique T; Nunes-Silva, Marilia; Peretz, Isabelle
A major theme driving research in congenital amusia is related to the modularity of this musical disorder, with two possible sources of the amusic pitch perception deficit. The first possibility is that the amusic deficit is due to a broad disorder of acoustic pitch processing that has the effect of disrupting downstream musical pitch processing, and the second is that amusia is specific to a musical pitch processing module. To interrogate these hypotheses, we performed a meta-analysis on two types of effect sizes contained within 42 studies in the amusia literature: the performance gap between amusics and controls on tasks of pitch discrimination, broadly defined, and the correlation between specifically acoustic pitch perception and musical pitch perception. To augment the correlation database, we also calculated this correlation using data from 106 participants tested by our own research group. We found strong evidence for the acoustic account of amusia. The magnitude of the performance gap was moderated by the size of pitch change, but not by whether the stimuli were composed of tones or speech. Furthermore, there was a significant correlation between an individual's acoustic and musical pitch perception. However, individual cases show a double dissociation between acoustic and musical processing, which suggests that although most amusic cases are probably explainable by an acoustic deficit, there is heterogeneity within the disorder. Finally, we found that tonal language fluency does not influence the performance gap between amusics and controls, and that there was no evidence that amusics fare worse with pitch direction tasks than pitch discrimination tasks. These results constitute a quantitative review of the current literature of congenital amusia, and suggest several new directions for research, including the experimental induction of amusic behaviour through transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) and the systematic exploration of the developmental
Cook-Cunningham, Sheri L; Grady, Melissa L
The purpose of this investigation was to assess the effects of three warm-up procedures (vocal-only, physical-only, physical/vocal combination) on acoustic and perceptual measures of choir sound. The researchers tested three videotaped, 5-minute, choral warm-up procedures on three university choirs. After participating in a warm-up procedure, each choir was recorded singing a folk song for long-term average spectra and pitch analysis. Singer participants responded to a questionnaire about preferences after each warm-up procedure. Warm-up procedures and recording sessions occurred during each choir's regular rehearsal time and in each choir's regular rehearsal space during three consecutive rehearsals. Long-term average spectra results demonstrated more resonant singing after the physical/vocal warm-up for two of the three choirs. Pitch analysis results indicate that all three choirs sang "in-tune" or with the least pitch deviation after participating in the physical/vocal warm-up. Singer questionnaire responses showed general preference for the physical/vocal combination warm-up, and singer ranking of the three procedures indicated the physical/vocal warm-up as the most favored for readiness to sing. In the context of this study with these three university choir participants, it seems that a combination choral warm-up that includes physical and vocal aspects is preferred by singers, enables more resonant singing, and more in-tune singing. Findings from this study could provide teachers and choral directors with important information as they structure and experiment with their choral warm-up procedures. Copyright © 2018 The Voice Foundation. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Wilbiks, Jonathan M P; Vuvan, Dominique T; Girard, Pier-Yves; Peretz, Isabelle; Russo, Frank A
Congenital amusia is a condition in which an individual suffers from a deficit of musical pitch perception and production. Individuals suffering from congenital amusia generally tend to abstain from musical activities. Here, we present the unique case of Tim Falconer, a self-described musicophile who also suffers from congenital amusia. We describe and assess Tim's attempts to train himself out of amusia through a self-imposed 18-month program of formal vocal training and practice. We tested Tim with respect to music perception and vocal production across seven sessions including pre- and post-training assessments. We also obtained diffusion-weighted images of his brain to assess connectivity between auditory and motor planning areas via the arcuate fasciculus (AF). Tim's behavioral and brain data were compared to that of normal and amusic controls. While Tim showed temporary gains in his singing ability, he did not reach normal levels, and these gains faded when he was not engaged in regular lessons and practice. Tim did show some sustained gains with respect to the perception of musical rhythm and meter. We propose that Tim's lack of improvement in pitch perception and production tasks is due to long-standing and likely irreversible reduction in connectivity along the AF fiber tract.
Liu, Fang; Chan, Alice H D; Ciocca, Valter; Roquet, Catherine; Peretz, Isabelle; Wong, Patrick C M
This study investigated pitch perception and production in speech and music in individuals with congenital amusia (a disorder of musical pitch processing) who are native speakers of Cantonese, a tone language with a highly complex tonal system. Sixteen Cantonese-speaking congenital amusics and 16 controls performed a set of lexical tone perception, production, singing, and psychophysical pitch threshold tasks. Their tone production accuracy and singing proficiency were subsequently judged by independent listeners, and subjected to acoustic analyses. Relative to controls, amusics showed impaired discrimination of lexical tones in both speech and non-speech conditions. They also received lower ratings for singing proficiency, producing larger pitch interval deviations and making more pitch interval errors compared to controls. Demonstrating higher pitch direction identification thresholds than controls for both speech syllables and piano tones, amusics nevertheless produced native lexical tones with comparable pitch trajectories and intelligibility as controls. Significant correlations were found between pitch threshold and lexical tone perception, music perception and production, but not between lexical tone perception and production for amusics. These findings provide further evidence that congenital amusia is a domain-general language-independent pitch-processing deficit that is associated with severely impaired music perception and production, mildly impaired speech perception, and largely intact speech production.
Waaramaa, Teija; Palo, Pertti; Kankare, Elina
Vocal emotions are expressed either by speech or singing. The difference is that in singing the pitch is predetermined while in speech it may vary freely. It was of interest to study whether there were voice quality differences between freely varying and mono-pitched vowels expressed by professional actors. Given their profession, actors have to be able to express emotions both by speech and singing. Electroglottogram and acoustic analyses of emotional utterances embedded in expressions of freely varying vowels [a:], [i:], [u:] (96 samples) and mono-pitched protracted vowels (96 samples) were studied. Contact quotient (CQEGG) was calculated using 35%, 55%, and 80% threshold levels. Three different threshold levels were used in order to evaluate their effects on emotions. Genders were studied separately. The results suggested significant gender differences for CQEGG 80% threshold level. SPL, CQEGG, and F4 were used to convey emotions, but to a lesser degree, when F0 was predetermined. Moreover, females showed fewer significant variations than males. Both genders used more hypofunctional phonation type in mono-pitched utterances than in the expressions with freely varying pitch. The present material warrants further study of the interplay between CQEGG threshold levels and formant frequencies, and listening tests to investigate the perceptual value of the mono-pitched vowels in the communication of emotions.
Full Text Available Language and music are complex cognitive and neural functions that rely on awareness of one’s own sound productions. Information on the awareness of vocal pitch, and its relation to phonemic awareness which is crucial for learning to read, will be important for understanding the relationship between tone-deafness and developmental language disorders such as dyslexia. Here we show that phonemic awareness skills are positively correlated with pitch perception-production skills in children. Children between the ages of 7 and 9 were tested on pitch perception and production, phonemic awareness, and IQ. Results showed a significant positive correlation between pitch perception-production and phonemic awareness, suggesting that the relationship between musical and linguistic sound processing is intimately linked to awareness at the level of pitch and phonemes. Since tone-deafness is a pitch-related impairment and dyslexia is a deficit of phonemic awareness, we suggest that dyslexia and tone-deafness may have a shared and/or common neural basis.
Johnson, Joseph F.; Kotz, Sonja A.
Vocal imitation is a hallmark of human communication that underlies the capacity to learn to speak and sing. Even so, poor vocal imitation abilities are surprisingly common in the general population and even expert vocalists cannot match the precision of a musical instrument. Although humans have evolved a greater degree of control over the laryngeal muscles that govern voice production, this ability may be underdeveloped compared with control over the articulatory muscles, such as the tongue and lips, volitional control of which emerged earlier in primate evolution. Human participants imitated simple melodies by either singing (i.e. producing pitch with the larynx) or whistling (i.e. producing pitch with the lips and tongue). Sung notes were systematically biased towards each individual's habitual pitch, which we hypothesize may act to conserve muscular effort. Furthermore, while participants who sung more precisely also whistled more precisely, sung imitations were less precise than whistled imitations. The laryngeal muscles that control voice production are under less precise control than the oral muscles that are involved in whistling. This imprecision may be due to the relatively recent evolution of volitional laryngeal-motor control in humans, which may be tuned just well enough for the coarse modulation of vocal-pitch in speech. PMID:29765635
Full Text Available Introduction. Hyperkinetic (hyperfunctional dysphonia is a common pathology. The disorder is often found in vocal professionals faced with high vocal requirements. Objective. The objective of this study was to evaluate the effects of vocal therapy on voice condition characterized by hyperkinetic dysphonia with prenodular lesions and soft nodules. Methods. The study included 100 adult patients and 27 children aged 4-16 years with prenodular lesions and soft nodules. A subjective acoustic analysis using the GIRBAS scale was performed prior to and after vocal therapy. Twenty adult patients and 10 children underwent objective acoustic analysis including several acoustic parameters. Pathological vocal qualities (hoarse, harsh and breathy voice were also obtained by computer analysis. Results. The subjective acoustic analysis revealed a significant (p<0.01 reduction in all dysphonia parameters after vocal treatment in adults and children. After treatment, all levels of dysphonia were lowered in 85% (85/100 of adult patients and 29% (29/100 had a normal voice. Before vocal therapy 9 children had severe, 13 had moderate and 8 slight dysphonia. After vocal therapy only 1 child had severe dysphonia, 7 had moderate, 10 had slight levels of dysphonia and 9 were without voice disorder. The objective acoustic analysis in adults revealed a significant improvement (p≤0.025 in all dysphonia parameters except SD F0 and jitter %. In children, the acoustic parameters SD F0, jitter % and NNE (normal noise energy were significantly improved (p=0.003-0.03. Pathological voice qualities were also improved in adults and children (p<0.05. Conclusion. Vocal therapy effectively improves the voice in hyperkinetic dysphonia with prenodular lesions and soft nodules in both adults and children, affecting diverse acoustic parameters.
Full Text Available The voice is one of the most important media for communication, yet there is a wide range of abilities in both the perception and production of the voice. In this article, we review this range of abilities, focusing on pitch accuracy as a particularly informative case, and look at the factors underlying these abilities. Several classes of models have been posited describing the relationship between vocal perception and production, and we review the evidence for and against each class of model. We look at how the voice is different from other musical instruments and review evidence about both the association and the dissociation between vocal perception and production abilities. Finally, we introduce the Linked Dual Representation model, a new approach which can account for the broad patterns in prior findings, including trends in the data which might seem to be countervailing. We discuss how this model interacts with higher-order cognition and examine its predictions about several aspects of vocal perception and production.
Caffier, Philipp P; Salmen, Tatjana; Ermakova, Tatiana; Forbes, Eleanor; Ko, Seo-Rin; Song, Wen; Gross, Manfred; Nawka, Tadeus
There are few data demonstrating the specific extent to which surgical intervention for vocal fold nodules (VFN) improves vocal function in professional (PVU) and non-professional voice users (NVU). The objective of this study was to compare and quantify results after phonomicrosurgery for VFN in these patient groups. In a prospective clinical study, surgery was performed via microlaryngoscopy in 37 female patients with chronic VFN manifestations (38±12 yrs, mean±SD). Pre- and postoperative evaluations of treatment efficacy comprised videolaryngostroboscopy, auditory-perceptual voice assessment, voice range profile (VRP), acoustic-aerodynamic analysis, and voice handicap index (VHI-9i). The dysphonia severity index (DSI) was compared with the vocal extent measure (VEM). PVU (n=24) and NVU (n=13) showed comparable laryngeal findings and levels of suffering (VHI-9i 16±7 vs 17±8), but PVU had a better pretherapeutic vocal range (26.8±7.4 vs 17.7±5.1 semitones, p<0.001) and vocal capacity (VEM 106±18 vs 74±29, p<0.01). Three months postoperatively, all patients had straight vocal fold edges, complete glottal closure, and recovered mucosal wave propagation. The mean VHI-9i score decreased by 8±6 points. DSI increased from 4.0±2.4 to 5.5±2.4, and VEM from 95±27 to 108±23 (p<0.001). Both parameters correlated significantly (rs=0.82). The average vocal range increased by 4.1±5.3 semitones, and the mean speaking pitch lowered by 0.5±1.4 semitones. These results confirm that phonomicrosurgery for VFN is a safe therapy for voice improvement in both PVU and NVU who do not respond to voice therapy alone. Top-level artistic capabilities in PVU were restored, but numeric changes of most vocal parameters were considerably larger in NVU.
Smith, Tony; Gittel, Falko; Schwarzbacher, Andreas; Hilt, E.; Timoney, Joseph
Pitch detectors are used in a variety of speech processing applications such as speech recognition systems where the pitch of the speaker is used as one parameter for identification purposes. Furthermore, pitch detectors are also sued with adaptive filters to achieve high quality adaptive noise cancellation of speech signals. In voice conversion systems, pitch detection is an essential step since the pitch of the modified signal is altered to model the target voice. This paper describes a ...
Mumović, Gordana; Veselinović, Mila; Arbutina, Tanja; Škrbić, Renata
Hyperkinetic (hyperfunctional) dysphonia is a common pathology. The disorder is often found in vocal professionals faced with high vocal requirements. The objective of this study was to evaluate the effects of vocal therapy on voice condition characterized by hyperkinetic dysphonia with prenodular lesions and soft nodules. The study included 100 adult patients and 27 children aged 4-16 years with prenodular lesions and soft nodules. A subjective acoustic analysis using the GIRBAS scale was performed prior to and after vocal therapy. Twenty adult patients and 10 children underwent objective acoustic analysis including several acoustic parameters. Pathological vocal qualities (hoarse, harsh and breathy voice) were also obtained by computer analysis. The subjective acoustic analysis revealed a significant (pvocal treatment in adults and children. After treatment, all levels of dysphonia were lowered in 85% (85/100) of adult patients and 29% (29/100) had a normal voice. Before vocal therapy 9 children had severe, 13 had moderate and 8 slight dysphonia. After vocal therapy only 1 child had severe dysphonia, 7 had moderate, 10 had slight levels of dysphonia and 9 were without voice disorder. The objective acoustic analysis in adults revealed a significant improvement (p≤0.025) in all dysphonia parameters except SD FO and jitter %. In children, the acoustic parameters SD FO, jitter % and NNE (normal noise energy) were significantly improved (p=0.003-0.03). Pathological voice qualities were also improved in adults and children (pVocal therapy effectively improves the voice in hyperkinetic dysphonia with prenodular lesions and soft nodules in both adults and children, affectinq diverse acoustic parameters.
Titze, Ingo R
The origin of vocal registers has generally been attributed to differential activation of cricothyroid and thyroarytenoid muscles in the larynx. Register shifts, however, have also been shown to be affected by glottal pressures exerted on vocal fold surfaces, which can change with loudness, pitch, and vowel. Here it is shown computationally and with empirical data that intraglottal pressures can change abruptly when glottal adductory geometry is changed relatively smoothly from convergent to divergent. An intermediate shape between large convergence and large divergence, namely, a nearly rectangular glottal shape with almost parallel vocal fold surfaces, is associated with mixed registration. It can be less stable than either of the highly angular shapes unless transglottal pressure is reduced and upper stiffness of vocal fold tissues is balanced with lower stiffness. This intermediate state of adduction is desirable because it leads to a low phonation threshold pressure with moderate vocal fold collision. Achieving mixed registration consistently across wide ranges of F0, lung pressure, and vocal tract shapes appears to be a balancing act of coordinating laryngeal muscle activation with vocal tract pressures. Surprisingly, a large transglottal pressure is not facilitative in this process, exacerbating the bi-stable condition and the associated register contrast.
Berkowska, Magdalena; Dalla Bella, Simone
Singing is as natural as speaking for humans. Increasing evidence shows that the layman can carry a tune (e.g., when asked to sing a well-known song or to imitate single pitches, intervals and short melodies). Yet, important individual differences exist in the general population with regard to singing proficiency. Some individuals are particularly inaccurate or imprecise in producing or imitating pitch information (poor-pitch singers), thus showing a variety of singing phenotypes. Unfortunately, so far there is not a standard set of tasks for assessing singing proficiency in the general population, allowing to uncover and characterize individual profiles of poor-pitch singing. Different tasks and analysis methods are typically used in various experiments, making the comparison of the results across studies arduous. To fill this gap we propose here a new tool for assessing singing proficiency (the Sung Performance Battery, SPB). The SPB starts from the assessment of participants' vocal range followed by five tasks: (1) single-pitch matching, (2) pitch-interval matching, (3) novel-melody matching, (4) singing from memory of familiar melodies (with lyrics and on a syllable), and (5) singing of familiar melodies (with lyrics and on a syllable) at a slow tempo indicated by a metronome. Data analysis via acoustical methods provides objective measures of pitch accuracy and precision in terms of absolute and relative pitch. The SPB has been tested in a group of 50 occasional singers. The results indicate that the battery is useful for characterizing proficient singing and for detecting cases of inaccurate and/or imprecise singing. PMID:24151475
Full Text Available Singing is as natural as speaking for humans. Increasing evidence shows that the layman can carry a tune (e.g., when asked to sing a well-known song or to imitate single pitches, intervals and short melodies. Yet, important individual differences exist in the general population with regard to singing proficiency. Some individuals are particularly inaccurate or imprecise in producing or imitating pitch information (poor-pitch singers, thus showing a variety of singing phenotypes. Unfortunately, so far there is not a standard set of tasks for assessing singing proficiency in the general population, allowing to uncover and characterize individual profiles of poor-pitch singing. Different tasks and analysis methods are typically used in various experiments, making the comparison of the results across studies arduous. To fill this gap we propose here a new tool for assessing singing proficiency (the Sung Performance Battery, SPB. The SPB starts from the assessment of participants’ vocal range followed by five tasks: 1 single-pitch matching, 2 pitch-interval matching, 3 novel-melody matching, 4 singing from memory of familiar melodies (with lyrics and on a syllable, and 5 singing of familiar melodies (with lyrics and on a syllable at a slow tempo indicated by a metronome. Data analysis via acoustical methods provides objective measures of pitch accuracy and precision in terms of absolute and relative pitch. The SPB has been tested in a group of 50 occasional singers. The results indicate that the battery is useful for characterizing proficient singing and for detecting cases of inaccurate and/or imprecise singing.
Full Text Available Perceiving and producing vocal sounds are important functions of the auditory-motor system and are fundamental to communication. Prior studies have identified a network of brain regions involved in pitch production, specifically pitch matching. Here we reverse engineer the function of the auditory perception-production network by targeting specific cortical regions (e.g., right and left posterior superior temporal (pSTG and posterior inferior frontal gyri (pIFG with cathodal transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS—commonly found to decrease excitability in the underlying cortical region—allowing us to causally test the role of particular nodes in this network. Performance on a pitch-matching task was determined before and after 20 min of cathodal stimulation. Acoustic analyses of pitch productions showed impaired accuracy after cathodal stimulation to the left pIFG and the right pSTG in comparison to sham stimulation. Both regions share particular roles in the feedback and feedforward motor control of pitched vocal production with a differential hemispheric dominance.
Cahani, M; Paul, G; Shahar, A
Fifty-six subjects complaining of tinnitus underwent an audiometric test and a test for identifying the analogous pitch of their tinnitus. All of the subjects reported that they had been exposed to noise in the past. The subjects were divided into two groups on the basis of their audiometric test results. Group P was composed of subjects who showed a sensorineural hearing loss typical of acoustic trauma. Group N was composed of subjects whose hearing was within normal limits. The pitch of the tinnitus in group P was concentrated in the high-frequency range, whereas in group N tinnitus pitch values were distributed over the low and mid-audiometric frequency spectrum. It was deduced that different processes are involved in the generation of tinnitus in the two groups.
Simone eDalla Bella
Full Text Available Singing is as natural as speaking for the majority of people. Yet some individuals (i.e., 10-15% are inaccurate singers, typically performing or imitating pitches and melodies inaccurately. This condition, commonly referred to as tone deafness, has been observed both in the presence and absence of deficient pitch perception. In this article we review the existing literature concerning normal singing, poor-pitch singing, and, briefly, the sources of this condition. Considering that pitch plays a prominent role in the structure of both music and speech we also focus on the possibility that pitch production (or imitation is similarly impaired in poor-pitch singers. Preliminary evidence from our laboratory on poor-pitch singing suggests that pitch imitation may be selectively inaccurate in the music domain without being affected in speech. This finding points to separability of mechanisms subserving pitch production in music and language.
Full Text Available Dynamic MRI analysis of phonation has gathered interest in voice and speech physiology. However, there are limited data addressing the extent to which articulation is dependent on loudness.12 professional singer subjects of different voice classifications were analysed concerning the vocal tract profiles recorded with dynamic real-time MRI with 25fps in different pitch and loudness conditions. The subjects were asked to sing ascending scales on the vowel /a/ in three loudness conditions (comfortable=mf, very soft=pp, very loud=ff, respectively. Furthermore, fundamental frequency and sound pressure level were analysed from the simultaneously recorded optical audio signal after noise cancellation.The data show articulatory differences with respect to changes of both pitch and loudness. Here, lip opening and pharynx width were increased. While the vertical larynx position was rising with pitch it was lower for greater loudness. Especially, the lip opening and pharynx width were more strongly correlated with the sound pressure level than with pitch.For the vowel /a/ loudness has an effect on articulation during singing which should be considered when articulatory vocal tract data are interpreted.
Echternach, Matthias; Burk, Fabian; Burdumy, Michael; Traser, Louisa; Richter, Bernhard
Dynamic MRI analysis of phonation has gathered interest in voice and speech physiology. However, there are limited data addressing the extent to which articulation is dependent on loudness. 12 professional singer subjects of different voice classifications were analysed concerning the vocal tract profiles recorded with dynamic real-time MRI with 25fps in different pitch and loudness conditions. The subjects were asked to sing ascending scales on the vowel /a/ in three loudness conditions (comfortable=mf, very soft=pp, very loud=ff, respectively). Furthermore, fundamental frequency and sound pressure level were analysed from the simultaneously recorded optical audio signal after noise cancellation. The data show articulatory differences with respect to changes of both pitch and loudness. Here, lip opening and pharynx width were increased. While the vertical larynx position was rising with pitch it was lower for greater loudness. Especially, the lip opening and pharynx width were more strongly correlated with the sound pressure level than with pitch. For the vowel /a/ loudness has an effect on articulation during singing which should be considered when articulatory vocal tract data are interpreted.
Bee, Mark A
Acoustic signals provide a basis for social recognition in a wide range of animals. Few studies, however, have attempted to relate the patterns of individual variation in signals to behavioral discrimination thresholds used by receivers to discriminate among individuals. North American bullfrogs (Rana catesbeiana) discriminate among familiar and unfamiliar individuals based on individual variation in advertisement calls. The sources, patterns, and magnitudes of variation in eight acoustic properties of multiple-note advertisement calls were examined to understand how patterns of within-individual variation might either constrain, or provide additional cues for, vocal recognition. Six of eight acoustic properties exhibited significant note-to-note variation within multiple-note calls. Despite this source of within-individual variation, all call properties varied significantly among individuals, and multivariate analyses indicated that call notes were individually distinct. Fine-temporal and spectral call properties exhibited less within-individual variation compared to gross-temporal properties and contributed most toward statistically distinguishing among individuals. Among-individual differences in the patterns of within-individual variation in some properties suggest that within-individual variation could also function as a recognition cue. The distributions of among-individual and within-individual differences were used to generate hypotheses about the expected behavioral discrimination thresholds of receivers.
Neil M Mclachlan
Full Text Available Although musical skills clearly improve with training, pitch processing has generally been believed to be biologically determined by the behavior of brain stem neural mechanisms. Two main classes of pitch models have emerged over the last 50 years. Harmonic template models have been used to explain cross-channel integration of frequency information, and waveform periodicity models have been used to explain pitch discrimination that is much finer than the resolution of the auditory nerve. It has been proposed that harmonic templates are learnt from repeated exposure to voice, and so it may also be possible to learn inharmonic templates from repeated exposure to inharmonic music instruments. This study investigated whether pitch-matching accuracy for inharmonic percussion instruments was better in people who have trained on these instruments and could reliably recognize their timbre. We found that adults who had trained with Indonesian gamelan instruments were better at recognizing and pitch-matching gamelan instruments than people with similar levels of music training, but no prior exposure to these instruments. These findings suggest that gamelan musicians were able to use inharmonic templates to support accurate pitch processing for these instruments. We suggest that recognition mechanisms based on spectrotemporal patterns of afferent auditory excitation in the early stages of pitch processing allow rapid priming of the lowest frequency partial of inharmonic timbres, explaining how music training can adapt pitch processing to different musical genres and instruments.
Long, Jennifer L
A vibratory vocal fold replacement would introduce a new treatment paradigm for structural vocal fold diseases such as scarring and lamina propria loss. This work implants a tissue-engineered replacement for vocal fold lamina propria and epithelium in rabbits and compares histology and function to injured controls and orthotopic transplants. Hypotheses were that the cell-based implant would engraft and control the wound response, reducing fibrosis and restoring vibration. Translational research. Rabbit adipose-derived mesenchymal stem cells (ASC) were embedded within a three-dimensional fibrin gel, forming the cell-based outer vocal fold replacement (COVR). Sixteen rabbits underwent unilateral resection of vocal fold epithelium and lamina propria, as well as reconstruction with one of three treatments: fibrin glue alone with healing by secondary intention, replantation of autologous resected vocal fold cover, or COVR implantation. After 4 weeks, larynges were examined histologically and with phonation. Fifteen rabbits survived. All tissues incorporated well after implantation. After 1 month, both graft types improved histology and vibration relative to injured controls. Extracellular matrix (ECM) of the replanted mucosa was disrupted, and ECM of the COVR implants remained immature. Immune reaction was evident when male cells were implanted into female rabbits. Best histologic and short-term vibratory outcomes were achieved with COVR implants containing male cells implanted into male rabbits. Vocal fold cover replacement with a stem cell-based tissue-engineered construct is feasible and beneficial in acute rabbit implantation. Wound-modifying behavior of the COVR implant is judged to be an important factor in preventing fibrosis. NA. Laryngoscope, 128:153-159, 2018. © 2017 The American Laryngological, Rhinological and Otological Society, Inc.
Demany, Laurent; Montandon, Gaspard; Semal, Catherine
By presenting, before a "chord" of three pure tones with remote frequencies, a tone relatively close in frequency to one component (T1) of the chord, one can direct the listener's attention onto T1 within the chord. In the first part of the present study, it was found that this increases the accuracy with which the pitch of T1 is perceived. The attentional cue improved the discrimination between the frequency of T1 and that of another tone (T2) presented immediately after the chord or very shortly (300 msec) after it. No improvement was found when T1 was presented alone instead of within a chord. A subsequent experiment, in which the chord and T2 were separated by either 300 msec or 4 sec, indicated that the attentional cue improved not only the perception, but also the memorization of the pitch of T1 (especially when T1 was the intermediate component of the chord). It is argued that the positive effect of attention on memory took place when the pitch percept was encoded into memory, rather than after the formation of the pitch memory trace.
Characteristics of phonation onset were investigated in a two-layer body-cover continuum model of the vocal folds as a function of the biomechanical and geometric properties of the vocal folds. The analysis showed that an increase in either the body or cover stiffness generally increased the phonation threshold pressure and phonation onset frequency, although the effectiveness of varying body or cover stiffness as a pitch control mechanism varied depending on the body-cover stiffness ratio. Increasing body-cover stiffness ratio reduced the vibration amplitude of the body layer, and the vocal fold motion was gradually restricted to the medial surface, resulting in more effective flow modulation and higher sound production efficiency. The fluid-structure interaction induced synchronization of more than one group of eigenmodes so that two or more eigenmodes may be simultaneously destabilized toward phonation onset. At certain conditions, a slight change in vocal fold stiffness or geometry may cause phonation onset to occur as eigenmode synchronization due to a different pair of eigenmodes, leading to sudden changes in phonation onset frequency, vocal fold vibration pattern, and sound production efficiency. Although observed in a linear stability analysis, a similar mechanism may also play a role in register changes at finite-amplitude oscillations.
Heffner, Henry E.; Heffner, Rickye S.
Japanese macaques were trained to discriminate two forms of their coo vocalization before and after unilateral and bilateral ablation of the temporal cortex. Unilateral ablation of the left superior temporal gyrus, including auditory cortex, resulted in an initial impairment in the discrimination, but similar unilateral ablation of the right superior temporal gyrus had no effect. Bilateral temporal lesions including auditory cortex completely abolished the ability of the animals to discriminate their coos. Neither unilateral nor bilateral ablation of cortex dorsal to and sparing the auditory cortex had any effect on the discrimination. The perception of species-specific vocalizations by Japanese macaques seems to be mediated by the temporal cortex, with the left hemisphere playing a predominant role.
Full Text Available Hitting a baseball is often described as the most difficult thing to do in sports. A key aptitude of a good hitter is the ability to determine which pitch is coming. This rapid decision requires the batter to make a judgment in a fraction of a second based largely on the trajectory and spin of the ball. When does this decision occur relative to the ball’s trajectory and is it possible to identify neural correlates that represent how the decision evolves over a split second? Using single-trial analysis of electroencephalography (EEG we address this question within the context of subjects discriminating three types of pitches (fastball, curveball, slider based on pitch trajectories. We find clear neural signatures of pitch classification and, using signal detection theory, we identify the times of discrimination on a trial-to-trial basis. Based on these neural signatures we estimate neural discrimination distributions as a function of the distance the ball is from the plate. We find all three pitches yield unique distributions, namely the timing of the discriminating neural signatures relative to the position of the ball in its trajectory. For instance, fastballs are discriminated at the earliest points in their trajectory, relative to the two other pitches, which is consistent with the need for some constant time to generate and execute the motor plan for the swing (or inhibition of the swing. We also find incorrect discrimination of a pitch (errors yields neural sources in Brodmann Area 10 (BA 10, which has been implicated in prospective memory, recall and task difficulty. In summary, we show that single-trial analysis of EEG yields informative distributions of the relative point in a baseball’s trajectory when the batter makes a decision on which pitch is coming.
Nunes-Silva, Marilia; Moura, Ricardo; Lopes-Silva, Júlia Beatriz; Haase, Vitor Geraldi
Congenital amusia is a developmental disorder associated with deficits in pitch height discrimination or in integrating pitch sequences into melodies. This quasi-experimental pilot study investigated whether there is an association between pitch and numerical processing deficits in congenital amusia. Since pitch height discrimination is considered a form of magnitude processing, we investigated whether individuals with amusia present an impairment in numerical magnitude processing, which would reflect damage to a generalized magnitude system. Alternatively, we investigated whether the numerical processing deficit would reflect a disconnection between nonsymbolic and symbolic number representations. This study was conducted with 11 adult individuals with congenital amusia and a control comparison group of 6 typically developing individuals. Participants performed nonsymbolic and symbolic magnitude comparisons and number line tasks. Results were available from previous testing using the Montreal Battery of Evaluation of Amusia (MBEA) and a pitch change detection task (PCD). Compared to the controls, individuals with amusia exhibited no significant differences in their performance on both the number line and the nonsymbolic magnitude tasks. Nevertheless, they showed significantly worse performance on the symbolic magnitude task. Moreover, individuals with congenital amusia, who presented worse performance in the Meter subtest, also presented less precise nonsymbolic numerical representation. The relationship between meter and nonsymbolic numerical discrimination could indicate a general ratio processing deficit. The finding of preserved nonsymbolic numerical magnitude discrimination and mental number line representations, with impaired symbolic number processing, in individuals with congenital amusia indicates that (a) pitch height and numerical magnitude processing may not share common neural representations, and (b) in addition to pitch processing, individuals with
Liniger, Jesper; Pedersen, Henrik Clemmensen; Soltani, Mohsen
The key objectives of wind turbine manufactures and buyers are to reduce the Total Cost of Ownership and Total Cost of Energy. Among others, low downtime of a wind turbine is important to increase the amount of energy produced during its lifetime. Historical data indicate that pitch systems accou...
Chen, Wenli; Woo, Peak; Murry, Thomas
High-speed videoendoscopy captures the cycle-to-cycle vibratory motion of each individual vocal fold in normal and severely disordered phonation. Therefore, it provides a direct method to examine the specific vibratory changes following vocal fold surgery. The purpose of this study was to examine the vocal fold vibratory pattern changes in the surgically treated pathologic vocal fold and the contralateral vocal fold in three vocal pathologies: vocal polyp (n = 3), paresis or paralysis (n = 3), and scar (n = 3). Digital kymography was used to extract high-speed kymographic vocal fold images at the mid-membranous region of the vocal fold. Spectral analysis was subsequently applied to the digital kymography to quantify the cycle-to-cycle movements of each vocal fold, expressed as a spectrum. Surgical modification resulted in significantly improved spectral power of the treated pathologic vocal fold. Furthermore, the contralateral vocal fold also presented with improved spectral power irrespective of vocal pathology. In comparison with normal vocal fold spectrum, postsurgical vocal fold vibrations continued to demonstrate decreased vibratory amplitude in both vocal folds. Copyright © 2017 The Voice Foundation. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Baker, Vicki D.; Cohen, Nicki
The purpose of this study was to describe the university vocal training and vocal health of music educators and music therapists. The participants (N = 426), music educators (n = 351) and music therapists (n = 75), completed a survey addressing demographics, vocal training, voice usage, and vocal health. Both groups reported singing at least 50%…
Thorsen, Mira Skadegård
discrimination as two ways of articulating particular, opaque forms of racial discrimination that occur in everyday Danish (and other) contexts, and have therefore become normalized. I present and discuss discrimination as it surfaces in data from my empirical studies of discrimination in Danish contexts...
There are four phocids in waters around Antarctica: Weddell, leopard, crabeater, and Ross seals. These four species provide a unique opportunity to examine underwater vocal behavior in species sharing the same ecosystem. Some species live in pack ice, others in factice, but all are restricted to the Antarctic or sub-Antarctic islands. All breed and produce vocalizations under water. Social systems range from polygyny in large breeding colonies, to serial monogamy, to solitary species. The type of mating system influences the number of underwater vocalizations in the repertoire, with monogamous seals producing only a single call, polygynous species producing up to 35 calls, and solitary species an intermediate number of about 10 calls. Breeding occurs during the austral spring and each species carves-out an acoustic niche for communicating, with species using different frequency ranges, temporal patterns, and amplitude changes to convey their species-specific calls and presumably reduce acoustic competition. Some species exhibit geographic variations in their vocalizations around the continent, which may reflect discrete breeding populations. Some seals become silent during a vulnerable time of predation by killer whales, perhaps to avoid detection. Overall, vocalizations of these seals exhibit adaptive characteristics that reflect the co-evolution among species in the same ecosystem.
The goal of this study is to quantify the effects of vocal fold nodules on vibratory motion in children using high-speed videoendoscopy. Differences in vibratory motion were evaluated in 20 children with vocal fold nodules (5–11 years) and 20 age and gender matched typically developing children (5–11 years) during sustained phonation at typical pitch and loudness. Normalized kinematic features of vocal fold displacements from the mid-membranous vocal fold point were extracted from the steady-state high-speed video. A total of 12 kinematic features representing spatial and temporal characteristics of vibratory motion were calculated. Average values and standard deviations (cycle-to-cycle variability) of the following kinematic features were computed: normalized peak displacement, normalized average opening velocity, normalized average closing velocity, normalized peak closing velocity, speed quotient, and open quotient. Group differences between children with and without vocal fold nodules were statistically investigated. While a moderate effect size was observed for the spatial feature of speed quotient, and the temporal feature of normalized average closing velocity in children with nodules compared to vocally normal children, none of the features were statistically significant between the groups after Bonferroni correction. The kinematic analysis of the mid-membranous vocal fold displacement revealed that children with nodules primarily differ from typically developing children in closing phase kinematics of the glottal cycle, whereas the opening phase kinematics are similar. Higher speed quotients and similar opening phase velocities suggest greater relative forces are acting on vocal fold in the closing phase. These findings suggest that future large-scale studies should focus on spatial and temporal features related to the closing phase of the glottal cycle for differentiating the kinematics of children with and without vocal fold nodules. PMID:27124157
Klein, Travis A L; Gaziano, Joy E; Ridley, Marion B
A unique case of acute onset vocal fold paralysis secondary to phonotrauma is presented. The cause was forceful vocalization by a drill instructor on a firearm range. Imaging studies revealed extensive intralaryngeal and retropharyngeal hemorrhage. Laryngoscopy showed a complete left vocal fold paralysis. Relative voice rest was recommended, and the patient regained normal vocal fold mobility and function after approximately 12 weeks. Copyright © 2014 The Voice Foundation. All rights reserved.
Trehub, Sandra E.; Schellenberg, E. Glenn; Nakata, Takayuki
We examined effects of age and culture on children's memory for the pitch level of familiar music. Canadian 9- and 10-year-olds distinguished the original pitch level of familiar television theme songs from foils that were pitch-shifted by one semitone, whereas 5- to 8-year-olds failed to do so (Experiment 1). In contrast, Japanese 5- and…
Valentino, Amber L.; Shillingsburg, M. Alice; Call, Nathan A.; Burton, Britney; Bowen, Crystal N.
Children with autism have significant communication delays. Although some children develop vocalizations through shaping and differential reinforcement, others rarely exhibit vocalizations, and alternative methods are targeted in intervention. However, vocal language often remains a goal for caregivers and clinicians. Thus, strategies to increase…
Full Text Available We provide a detailed description of the rutting vocalisations of free-ranging male Iberian deer (Cervus elaphus hispanicus, Hilzheimer 1909, a geographically isolated and morphologically differentiated subspecies of red deer Cervus elaphus. We combine spectrographic examinations, spectral analyses and automated classifications to identify different call types, and compare the composition of the vocal repertoire with that of other red deer subspecies. Iberian stags give bouts of roars (and more rarely, short series of barks that are typically composed of two different types of calls. Long Common Roars are mostly given at the beginning or at the end of the bout, and are characterised by a high fundamental frequency (F0 resulting in poorly defined formant frequencies but a relatively high amplitude. In contrast, Short Common Roars are typically given in the middle or at the end of the bout, and are characterised by a lower F0 resulting in relatively well defined vocal tract resonances, but low amplitude. While we did not identify entirely Harsh Roars (as described in the Scottish red deer subspecies (Cervus elaphus scoticus, a small percentage of Long Common Roars contained segments of deterministic chaos. We suggest that the evolution of two clearly distinct types of Common Roars may reflect divergent selection pressures favouring either vocal efficiency in high pitched roars or the communication of body size in low-pitched, high spectral density roars highlighting vocal tract resonances. The clear divergence of the Iberian red deer vocal repertoire from those of other documented European red deer populations reinforces the status of this geographical variant as a distinct subspecies.
Cousineau, Marion; Carcagno, Samuele; Demany, Laurent; Pressnitzer, Daniel
Previous studies showed that the perceptual processing of sound sequences is more efficient when the sounds vary in pitch than when they vary in loudness. We show here that sequences of sounds varying in brightness of timbre are processed with the same efficiency as pitch sequences. The sounds used consisted of two simultaneous pure tones one octave apart, and the listeners' task was to make same/different judgments on pairs of sequences varying in length (one, two, or four sounds). In one condition, brightness of timbre was varied within the sequences by changing the relative level of the two pure tones. In other conditions, pitch was varied by changing fundamental frequency, or loudness was varied by changing the overall level. In all conditions, only two possible sounds could be used in a given sequence, and these two sounds were equally discriminable. When sequence length increased from one to four, discrimination performance decreased substantially for loudness sequences, but to a smaller extent for brightness sequences and pitch sequences. In the latter two conditions, sequence length had a similar effect on performance. These results suggest that the processes dedicated to pitch and brightness analysis, when probed with a sequence-discrimination task, share unexpected similarities.
Raffel, Markus; Richard, Hugues; Richter, Kai; Bosbach, Johannes; Geißler, Wolfgang
The present paper describes an experiment performed in a transonic wind tunnel facility where a new test section has been developed especially for the investigation of the unsteady flow above oscillating airfoils under dynamic stall conditions. Dynamic stall is characterized by the development, movement and shedding of one or more concentrated vortices on the airfoils upper surface. The hysteresis loops of lift-, drag- and pitching moment are highly influenced by these vortices. To understand...
Favaro, Livio; Ozella, Laura; Pessani, Daniela
The African Penguin (Spheniscus demersus) is a highly social and vocal seabird. However, currently available descriptions of the vocal repertoire of African Penguin are mostly limited to basic descriptions of calls. Here we provide, for the first time, a detailed description of the vocal behaviour of this species by collecting audio and video recordings from a large captive colony. We combine visual examinations of spectrograms with spectral and temporal acoustic analyses to determine vocal categories. Moreover, we used a principal component analysis, followed by signal classification with a discriminant function analysis, for statistical validation of the vocalisation types. In addition, we identified the behavioural contexts in which calls were uttered. The results show that four basic vocalisations can be found in the vocal repertoire of adult African Penguin, namely a contact call emitted by isolated birds, an agonistic call used in aggressive interactions, an ecstatic display song uttered by single birds, and a mutual display song vocalised by pairs, at their nests. Moreover, we identified two distinct vocalisations interpreted as begging calls by nesting chicks (begging peep) and unweaned juveniles (begging moan). Finally, we discussed the importance of specific acoustic parameters in classifying calls and the possible use of the source-filter theory of vocal production to study penguin vocalisations.
Kirke, Brian; Lazauskas, Leo
In recent years the Darrieus wind turbine concept has been adapted for use in water, either as a hydrokinetic turbine converting the kinetic energy of a moving fluid in open flow like an underwater wind turbine, or in a low head or ducted arrangement where flow is confined, streamtube expansion is controlled and efficiency is not subject to the Betz limit. Conventional fixed pitch Darrieus turbines suffer from two drawbacks, (i) low starting torque and (ii) shaking due to cyclical variations in blade angle of attack. Ventilation and cavitation can also cause problems in water turbines when blade velocities are high. Shaking can be largely overcome by the use of helical blades, but these do not produce large starting torque. Variable pitch can produce high starting torque and high efficiency, and by suitable choice of pitch regime, shaking can be minimized but not entirely eliminated. Ventilation can be prevented by avoiding operation close to a free surface, and cavitation can be prevented by limiting blade velocities. This paper summarizes recent developments in Darrieus water turbines, some problems and some possible solutions.
Bianchi, Federica; Hjortkjær, Jens; Santurette, Sébastien
Musicians typically show enhanced pitch-discrimination ability compared to non-musicians, consistent with the fact that musicians are more sensitive to some acoustic features critical for both speech and music processing. However, it is still unclear which mechanisms underlie this perceptual...... enhancement. In a previous behavioral study, musicians showed an increased pitch-discrimination performance for both resolved and unresolved complex tones suggesting an enhanced neural representation of pitch at central stages of the auditory system. The aim of this study was to clarify whether musicians show...... (i) differential neural activation in response to complex tones as compared to non-musicians and/or (ii) finer fundamental frequency (F0) representation in the auditory cortex. Assuming that the right auditory cortex is specialized in processing fine spectral changes, we hypothesized that an enhanced...
Full Text Available Abstract Background The perceptual-cognitive mechanisms and neural correlates of Absolute Pitch (AP are not fully understood. The aim of this fMRI study was to examine the neural network underlying AP using a pitch memory experiment and contrasting two groups of musicians with each other, those that have AP and those that do not. Results We found a common activation pattern for both groups that included the superior temporal gyrus (STG extending into the adjacent superior temporal sulcus (STS, the inferior parietal lobule (IPL extending into the adjacent intraparietal sulcus (IPS, the posterior part of the inferior frontal gyrus (IFG, the pre-supplementary motor area (pre-SMA, and superior lateral cerebellar regions. Significant between-group differences were seen in the left STS during the early encoding phase of the pitch memory task (more activation in AP musicians and in the right superior parietal lobule (SPL/intraparietal sulcus (IPS during the early perceptual phase (ITP 0–3 and later working memory/multimodal encoding phase of the pitch memory task (more activation in non-AP musicians. Non-significant between-group trends were seen in the posterior IFG (more in AP musicians and the IPL (more anterior activations in the non-AP group and more posterior activations in the AP group. Conclusion Since the increased activation of the left STS in AP musicians was observed during the early perceptual encoding phase and since the STS has been shown to be involved in categorization tasks, its activation might suggest that AP musicians involve categorization regions in tonal tasks. The increased activation of the right SPL/IPS in non-AP musicians indicates either an increased use of regions that are part of a tonal working memory (WM network, or the use of a multimodal encoding strategy such as the utilization of a visual-spatial mapping scheme (i.e., imagining notes on a staff or using a spatial coding for their relative pitch height for pitch
Bella, Simone Dalla; Berkowska, Magdalena; Sowiński, Jakub
Singing is as natural as speaking for the majority of people. Yet some individuals (i.e., 10-15%) are poor singers, typically performing or imitating pitches and melodies inaccurately. This condition, commonly referred to as "tone deafness," has been observed both in the presence and absence of deficient pitch perception. In this article we review the existing literature concerning normal singing, poor-pitch singing, and, briefly, the sources of this condition. Considering that pitch plays a prominent role in the structure of both music and speech we also focus on the possibility that speech production (or imitation) is similarly impaired in poor-pitch singers. Preliminary evidence from our laboratory suggests that pitch imitation may be selectively inaccurate in the music domain without being affected in speech. This finding points to separability of mechanisms subserving pitch production in music and language.
Bella, Simone Dalla; Berkowska, Magdalena; Sowiński, Jakub
Singing is as natural as speaking for the majority of people. Yet some individuals (i.e., 10–15%) are poor singers, typically performing or imitating pitches and melodies inaccurately. This condition, commonly referred to as “tone deafness,” has been observed both in the presence and absence of deficient pitch perception. In this article we review the existing literature concerning normal singing, poor-pitch singing, and, briefly, the sources of this condition. Considering that pitch plays a prominent role in the structure of both music and speech we also focus on the possibility that speech production (or imitation) is similarly impaired in poor-pitch singers. Preliminary evidence from our laboratory suggests that pitch imitation may be selectively inaccurate in the music domain without being affected in speech. This finding points to separability of mechanisms subserving pitch production in music and language. PMID:21811479
Brumm, Henrik; Zollinger, Sue Anne
Sophisticated vocal communication systems of birds and mammals, including human speech, are characterized by a high degree of plasticity in which signals are individually adjusted in response to changes in the environment. Here, we present, to our knowledge, the first evidence for vocal plasticity in a reptile. Like birds and mammals, tokay geckos ( Gekko gecko ) increased the duration of brief call notes in the presence of broadcast noise compared to quiet conditions, a behaviour that facilitates signal detection by receivers. By contrast, they did not adjust the amplitudes of their call syllables in noise (the Lombard effect), which is in line with the hypothesis that the Lombard effect has evolved independently in birds and mammals. However, the geckos used a different strategy to increase signal-to-noise ratios: instead of increasing the amplitude of a given call type when exposed to noise, the subjects produced more high-amplitude syllable types from their repertoire. Our findings demonstrate that reptile vocalizations are much more flexible than previously thought, including elaborate vocal plasticity that is also important for the complex signalling systems of birds and mammals. We suggest that signal detection constraints are one of the major forces driving the evolution of animal communication systems across different taxa. © 2017 The Author(s).
Full Text Available OBJECTIVE: The aim of this study was to describe the auditory-perceptive evaluation and the psychodynamic aspects of voice samples among suicidal movie characters. METHOD: Voice samples of 48 characters (27 male, 21 female, extracted from 36 movies produced between 1968 and 2006, were analyzed. The samples were evaluated through a specific protocol focusing on the auditory-perceptive evaluation (voice quality, resonance, pitch, loudness, modulation, pauses, articulation and rhythm and the psychodynamic aspects of voice. RESULTS: 85.5% of the samples exhibited abnormal findings in at least five parameters of the auditory-perceptive analysis, such as breathiness (n = 42; 87.5% of the samples, hoarseness (n = 39; 81.2% and strain (n = 29; 60.4%, as well as laryngopharingeal resonance (n = 39; 81.2%, either high pitch (n = 14; 29.2%, or decreased loudness (n = 31; 64.6%. With respect to the psychodynamic aspects, dismay was detected in 50% (n = 24 of the samples, hopelessness in 47.9% (n = 23, resignation in 37.5% (n = 18, and sadness in 33.3% (n = 16. CONCLUSION: Our findings suggest the existence of specific patterns used by actors during the interpretation of suicidal characters. The replication of these findings among real patients may contribute to improvement in the evaluation of potential suicidal patients, as well as the implementation of preventive measures.OBJETIVO: O objetivo do presente estudo foi descrever a análise perceptivo-auditiva e de psicodinâmica vocal de amostras de fala de personagens suicidas em filmes de cinema. MÉTODO: Foram analisadas amostras de fala de 48 personagens suicidas (27 homens, 21 mulheres, extraídas de 36 filmes produzidos no período de 1968 a 2006. As amostras foram analisadas utilizando-se um protocolo especificamente produzido para o registro das características da voz por meio da análise perceptivo-auditiva (qualidade vocal, ressonância, pitch, loudness, modulação, pausas, articulação e ritmo
Chen, A.; Liu, L.; Kager, R.W.J.
The current study explores how language experience may shape the correlation between lexical tone and musical pitch perception. A two domains (music and lexical tone) by two languages (tone, Mandarin Chinese and non-tone, Dutch) design is adopted. Participants were tested on their discrimination of
Deem, J F; Manning, W H; Knack, J V; Matesich, J S
A program for the automatic extraction of jitter (PAEJ) was developed for the clinical measurement of pitch perturbations using a microcomputer. The program currently includes 12 implementations of an algorithm for marking the boundary criteria for a fundamental period of vocal fold vibration. The relative sensitivity of these extraction procedures for identifying the pitch period was compared using sine waves. Data obtained to date provide information for each procedure concerning the effects of waveform peakedness and slope, sample duration in cycles, noise level of the analysis system with both direct and tape recorded input, and the influence of interpolation. Zero crossing extraction procedures provided lower jitter values regardless of sine wave frequency or sample duration. The procedures making use of positive- or negative-going zero crossings with interpolation provided the lowest measures of jitter with the sine wave stimuli. Pilot data obtained with normal-speaking adults indicated that jitter measures varied as a function of the speaker, vowel, and sample duration.
Tervaniemi, M; Schröger, E; Saher, M; Näätänen, R
The pitch of a spectrally rich sound is known to be more easily perceived than that of a sinusoidal tone. The present study compared the importance of spectral complexity and sound duration in facilitated pitch discrimination. The mismatch negativity (MMN), which reflects automatic neural discrimination, was recorded to a 2. 5% pitch change in pure tones with only one sinusoidal frequency component (500 Hz) and in spectrally rich tones with three (500-1500 Hz) and five (500-2500 Hz) harmonic partials. During the recordings, subjects concentrated on watching a silent movie. In separate blocks, stimuli were of 100 and 250 ms in duration. The MMN amplitude was enhanced with both spectrally rich sounds when compared with pure tones. The prolonged sound duration did not significantly enhance the MMN. This suggests that increased spectral rather than temporal information facilitates pitch processing of spectrally rich sounds.
Ingo R Titze
Full Text Available Male Rocky Mountain elk (Cervus elaphus nelsoni produce loud and high fundamental frequency bugles during the mating season, in contrast to the male European Red Deer (Cervus elaphus scoticus who produces loud and low fundamental frequency roaring calls. A critical step in understanding vocal communication is to relate sound complexity to anatomy and physiology in a causal manner. Experimentation at the sound source, often difficult in vivo in mammals, is simulated here by a finite element model of the larynx and a wave propagation model of the vocal tract, both based on the morphology and biomechanics of the elk. The model can produce a wide range of fundamental frequencies. Low fundamental frequencies require low vocal fold strain, but large lung pressure and large glottal flow if sound intensity level is to exceed 70 dB at 10 m distance. A high-frequency bugle requires both large muscular effort (to strain the vocal ligament and high lung pressure (to overcome phonation threshold pressure, but at least 10 dB more intensity level can be achieved. Glottal efficiency, the ration of radiated sound power to aerodynamic power at the glottis, is higher in elk, suggesting an advantage of high-pitched signaling. This advantage is based on two aspects; first, the lower airflow required for aerodynamic power and, second, an acoustic radiation advantage at higher frequencies. Both signal types are used by the respective males during the mating season and probably serve as honest signals. The two signal types relate differently to physical qualities of the sender. The low-frequency sound (Red Deer call relates to overall body size via a strong relationship between acoustic parameters and the size of vocal organs and body size. The high-frequency bugle may signal muscular strength and endurance, via a 'vocalizing at the edge' mechanism, for which efficiency is critical.
Rojas, Gleidy Vannesa E; Ricz, Hilton; Tumas, Vitor; Rodrigues, Guilherme R; Toscano, Patrícia; Aguiar-Ricz, Lílian
The study aimed to compare and correlate perceptual-auditory analysis of vocal parameters and self-perception in individuals with adductor spasmodic dysphonia before and after the application of botulinum toxin. This is a prospective cohort study. Sixteen individuals with a diagnosis of adductor spasmodic dysphonia were submitted to the application of botulinum toxin in the thyroarytenoid muscle, to the recording of a voice signal, and to the Voice Handicap Index (VHI) questionnaire before the application and at two time points after application. Two judges performed a perceptual-auditory analysis of eight vocal parameters with the aid of the Praat software for the visualization of narrow band spectrography, pitch, and intensity contour. Comparison of the vocal parameters before toxin application and on the first return revealed a reduction of oscillation intensity (P = 0.002), voice breaks (P = 0.002), and vocal tremor (P = 0.002). The same parameters increased on the second return. The degree of severity, strained-strangled voice, roughness, breathiness, and asthenia was unchanged. The total score and the emotional domain score of the VHI were reduced on the first return. There was a moderate correlation between the degree of voice severity and the total VHI score before application and on the second return, and a weak correlation on the first return. Perceptual-auditory analysis and self-perception proved to be efficient in the recognition of vocal changes and of the vocal impact on individuals with adductor spasmodic dysphonia under treatment with botulinum toxin, permitting the quantitation of changes along time. Copyright © 2017. Published by Elsevier Inc.
Dukhanov, V.I.; Mazurov, I.B.
A principal flowsheet of a differential discriminator intended for operation in a spectrometric circuit with statistical time distribution of pulses is described. The differential discriminator includes four integrated discriminators and a channel of piled-up signal rejection. The presence of the rejection channel enables the discriminator to operate effectively at loads of 14x10 3 pulse/s. The temperature instability of the discrimination thresholds equals 250 μV/ 0 C. The discrimination level changes within 0.1-5 V, the level shift constitutes 0.5% for the filling ratio of 1:10. The rejection coefficient is not less than 90%. Alpha spectrum of the 228 Th source is presented to evaluate the discriminator operation with the rejector. The rejector provides 50 ns time resolution
Smith, Marshall E; Roy, Nelson; Stoddard, Kelly
To assess the outcomes of management of unilateral vocal fold paralysis by ansa-RLN reinnervation in a series of patients ages 12-21. Clinical outcomes study. Six consecutive adolescents and young adults (ages 12-21 years) seeking treatment for unilateral vocal fold paralysis and glottal incompetence underwent ansa-RLN neurorraphy. Pre- and post-operative voice recordings acquired at least 1 year following surgery were submitted to acoustic and perceptual analysis. Patient-based measures were also taken. Mean perceptual visual analogue scale rating of dysphonia severity (0mm=profoundly abnormal voice, 100mm=completely normal voice) improved from 50mm pre-operatively to 82mm post-operatively. Mean maximum phonation time improved from 6.5s to 13.2s. Pitch and dynamic range were also observed to improve. Global self-ratings of voice function (0-100%) increased from 31.2% to 81.6% of normal. Ansa-RLN reinnervation is an effective treatment option for adolescents and young adults with unilateral vocal fold paralysis. The procedure has the potential to improve vocal function substantially, especially in those with isolated paralysis of the recurrent laryngeal nerve. The procedure alleviates the disadvantages associated with other surgical options for this age group.
Full Text Available OBJETIVO: investigar aspectos do histórico, hábitos e comportamentos vocais de cantores populares, conforme o sexo e as categorias profissional e amador. MÉTODO: entrevista com 47 cantores, 25 homens e 22 mulheres. RESULTADOS: significância estatística nos seguintes achados: MASCULINO - microfone nos ensaios, ausência de problemas vocais diagnosticados, ausência de orientações sobre higiene vocal, dor ou desconforto após cantar, ausência de alergias e problemas respiratórios; FEMININO - aulas de canto e conhecimento sobre postura; AMADOR - não cantar dançando, não imitar vozes, ausência de avaliação otorrinolaringológica, ausência de problemas vocais diagnosticados, ausência de terapia fonoaudiológica, ausência de orientações de anatomofisiologia vocal e não utilização de álcool nos ensaios; PROFISSIONAL - rouquidão, conhecimento sobre articulação, álcool durante os shows, "garganta suja" ou pigarro, dor após cantar. CONCLUSÕES: a comparação entre os sexos evidenciou que os homens utilizavam microfone no ensaio, não apresentavam problemas alérgicos ou respiratórios, nem problemas vocais diagnosticados, mas apresentavam sensação de dor ou desconforto após o canto e não possuíam noções sobre higiene vocal; e que as mulheres realizavam aulas de canto e possuíam orientações de postura. A comparação entre amadores e profissionais mostrou que os amadores não cantavam dançando, não imitavam vozes, não utilizavam álcool nos ensaios, e não apresentavam problemas vocais diagnosticados, mas não possuíam avaliação otorrinolaringológica, não realizavam terapia fonoaudiológica, e não possuíam conhecimento sobre anatomofisiologia vocal; e os profissionais apresentavam queixa de rouquidão, de "garganta suja" ou pigarro e de dor após cantar, e usavam álcool durante os shows, apesar de possuir conhecimento sobre articulação.PURPOSE: to investigate aspects of vocal history, vocal habits and
Mirzaei, Mahmood; Henriksen, Lars Christian; Poulsen, Niels Kjølstad
In this work the problem of individual pitch control of a variable-speed variable-pitch wind turbine in the full load region is considered. Model predictive control (MPC) is used to solve the problem. However as the plant is nonlinear and time varying, a new approach is proposed to simplify......-of-plane blade root bending moments and a better transient response compared to a benchmark PI individual pitch controller....
Cao, Dongpu; Rakheja, Subhash; Su, Chun-Yi
The influence of suspension tuning of passenger cars on bounce and pitch ride performance has been explored in a number of studies, while only minimal efforts have been made for establishing similar rules for heavy vehicles. This study aims to explore pitch dynamics and suspension tunings of a two-axle heavy vehicle with unconnected suspension, which could also provide valuable information for heavy vehicles with coupled suspensions. Based on a generalised pitch-plane model of a two-axle heav...
Fukushima, Makoto; Saunders, Richard C; Fujii, Naotaka; Averbeck, Bruno B; Mishkin, Mortimer
Vocal production is an example of controlled motor behavior with high temporal precision. Previous studies have decoded auditory evoked cortical activity while monkeys listened to vocalization sounds. On the other hand, there have been few attempts at decoding motor cortical activity during vocal production. Here we recorded cortical activity during vocal production in the macaque with a chronically implanted electrocorticographic (ECoG) electrode array. The array detected robust activity in motor cortex during vocal production. We used a nonlinear dynamical model of the vocal organ to reduce the dimensionality of `Coo' calls produced by the monkey. We then used linear regression to evaluate the information in motor cortical activity for this reduced representation of calls. This simple linear model accounted for circa 65% of the variance in the reduced sound representations, supporting the feasibility of using the dynamical model of the vocal organ for decoding motor cortical activity during vocal production.
Besson, Mireille; Schön, Daniele; Moreno, Sylvain; Santos, Andréia; Magne, Cyrille
We review a series of experiments aimed at studying pitch processing in music and speech. These studies were conducted with musician and non musician adults and children. We found that musical expertise improved pitch processing not only in music but also in speech. Demonstrating transfer of training between music and language has interesting applications for second language learning. We also addressed the issue of whether the positive effects of musical expertise are linked with specific predispositions for music or with extensive musical practice. Results of longitudinal studies argue for the later. Finally, we also examined pitch processing in dyslexic children and found that they had difficulties discriminating strong pitch changes that are easily discriminate by normal readers. These results argue for a strong link between basic auditory perception abilities and reading abilities. We used conjointly the behavioral method (Reaction Times and error rates) and the electrophysiological method (recording of the changes in brain electrical activity time-locked to stimulus presentation, Event-Related brain Potentials or ERPs). A set of common processes may be responsible for pitch processing in music and in speech and these processes are shaped by musical practice. These data add evidence in favor of brain plasticity and open interesting perspectives for the remediation of dyslexia using musical training.
Landsberger, David; Galvin, John J.
In cochlear implants (CIs), simultaneous or sequential stimulation of adjacent electrodes can produce intermediate pitch percepts between those of the component electrodes. However, it is unclear whether simultaneous and sequential virtual channels (VCs) can be discriminated. In this study, CI users were asked to discriminate simultaneous and sequential VCs; discrimination was measured for monopolar (MP) and bipolar + 1 stimulation (BP + 1), i.e., relatively broad and focused stimulation mode...
Benboujja, Fouzi; Garcia, Jordan A.; Beaudette, Kathy; Strupler, Mathias; Hartnick, Christopher J.; Boudoux, Caroline
Optical coherence tomography (OCT) has been previously identified as a promising tool for exploring laryngeal pathologies in adults. Here, we present an OCT handheld probe dedicated to imaging the unique geometry involved in pediatric laryngoscopy. A vertical cavity surface emitting laser-based wavelength-swept OCT system operating at 60 frames per second was coupled to the probe to acquire three-dimensional (3-D) volumes in vivo. In order to evaluate the performance of the proposed probe and system, we imaged pediatric vocal fold lesions of patients going under direct laryngoscopy. Through this in vivo study, we extracted OCT features characterizing each pediatric vocal fold lesion, which shows a great potential for noninvasive laryngeal lesion discrimination. We believe OCT vocal fold examination in 3-D will result in improved knowledge of the pediatric anatomy and could aid in managing pediatric laryngeal diseases.
Transmasculine people assigned female sex at birth but who do not identify with this classification have traditionally received little consideration in the voice literature. Some voice researchers and clinicians suggest that transmasculine people do not need attention because testosterone treatment leads to a satisfactory masculinization of their voice organs and voices. Others, however, argue that transmasculine people are a heterogeneous group whose members might not share the same body type, gender identity or desire for medical approaches to gender transitioning. Therefore, testosterone-induced voice changes may not necessarily meet the needs and expectations of all transmasculine people. To evaluate the gender-related discursive and empirical data about transmasculine people's vocal situations to identify gaps in the current state of knowledge and to make suggestions for future voice research and clinical practice. A comprehensive review of peer-reviewed academic and clinical literature was conducted. Publications were identified by searching seven electronic databases and bibliographies of relevant articles. Thirty-one publications met inclusion criteria. Discourses and empirical data were analysed thematically. Potential problem areas that transmasculine people may experience were identified and the quality of evidence appraised. The extent and quality of voice research conducted with transmasculine people so far was found to be limited. There was mixed evidence to suggest that transmasculine people's vocal situations could be regarded as problematic. The diversity that characterizes the transmasculine population received little attention and the complexity of the factors that contribute to a successful or unsuccessful vocal communication of gender in this group appeared to be under-researched. While most transmasculine people treated with testosterone can expect a lowering of their pitch, it remains unclear whether the extent of the pitch change is enough
Martins, Regina Helena Garcia; Santana, Marcela Ferreira; Tavares, Elaine Lara Mendes
Vocal cysts are benign laryngeal lesions, which affect children and adults. They can be classified as epidermic or mucous-retention cyst. The objective was to study the clinical, endoscopic, and surgical aspects of vocal cysts. We reviewed the medical charts of 72 patients with vocal cysts, considering age, gender, occupation, time of vocal symptoms, nasosinusal and gastroesophageal symptoms, vocal abuse, tabagism, alcoholism, associated lesions, treatment, and histological details. Of the 72 cases, 46 were adults (36 females and 10 male) and 26 were children (eight girls and 18 boys). As far as occupation is concerned, there was a higher incidence of students and teachers. All the patients had symptoms of chronic hoarseness. Nasosinusal (27.77%) and gastroesophageal (32%) symptoms were not relevant. Vocal abuse was reported by 45.83%, smoking by 18%, and alcoholism by 8.4% of the patients. Unilateral cysts were seen in 93% of the cases, 22 patients had associated lesions, such as bridge, sulcus vocalis, and microweb. Surgical treatment was performed in 46 cases. Histological analysis of the epidermic cysts revealed a cavity with caseous content, covered by stratified squamous epithelium, often keratinized. Mucous cysts presented mucous content, and the walls were coated by a cylindrical ciliated epithelium. Vocal cysts are benign vocal fold lesions that affect children and adults, being often associated with vocal overuse, which frequently affects people who use their voices professionally. Vocal symptoms are chronic in course, often times since childhood, and the treatment of choice is surgical removal. A careful examination of the vocal folds is necessary during surgery, because other laryngeal lesions may be associated with vocal cysts. Copyright Â© 2011 The Voice Foundation. Published by Mosby, Inc. All rights reserved.
Tobias, Martha L.; Corke, Anna; Korsh, Jeremy; Yin, David; Kelley, Darcy B.
Male Xenopus laevis frogs produce underwater advertisement calls that attract gravid females and suppress calling by male competitors. Here we explore whether groups of males establish vocal ranks and whether auditory cues alone suffice for vocal suppression. Tests of male–male pairs within assigned groups reveal linear vocal dominance relations, in which each male has a defined rank. Both the duration over which males interact, as well as the number of competitive opportunities, affect linea...
Croake, Daniel J.; Andreatta, Richard D.; Stemple, Joseph C.
Purpose: The purpose of this study is to quantify the interactions of the 3 vocalization subsystems of respiration, phonation, and resonance before, during, and after a perturbation to the larynx (temporarily induced unilateral vocal fold paralysis) in 10 vocally healthy participants. Using dynamic systems theory as a guide, we hypothesized that…
Full Text Available Congenital amusia is a neurogenetic disorder that affects music processing and that is ascribed to a deficit in pitch processing. We investigated whether this deficit extended to pitch processing in speech, notably the pitch changes used to contrast lexical tones in tonal languages. Congenital amusics and matched controls, all non-tonal language speakers, were tested for lexical tone discrimination in Mandarin Chinese (Experiment 1 and in Thai (Experiment 2. Tones were presented in pairs and participants were required to make same/different judgments. Experiment 2 additionally included musical analogs of Thai tones for comparison. Performance of congenital amusics was inferior to that of controls for all materials, suggesting a domain-general pitch-processing deficit. The pitch deficit of amusia is thus not limited to music, but may compromise the ability to process and learn tonal languages. Combined with acoustic analyses of the tone material, the present findings provide new insights into the nature of the pitch-processing deficit exhibited by amusics.
Tillmann, Barbara; Burnham, Denis; Nguyen, Sebastien; Grimault, Nicolas; Gosselin, Nathalie; Peretz, Isabelle
Congenital amusia is a neurogenetic disorder that affects music processing and that is ascribed to a deficit in pitch processing. We investigated whether this deficit extended to pitch processing in speech, notably the pitch changes used to contrast lexical tones in tonal languages. Congenital amusics and matched controls, all non-tonal language speakers, were tested for lexical tone discrimination in Mandarin Chinese (Experiment 1) and in Thai (Experiment 2). Tones were presented in pairs and participants were required to make same/different judgments. Experiment 2 additionally included musical analogs of Thai tones for comparison. Performance of congenital amusics was inferior to that of controls for all materials, suggesting a domain-general pitch-processing deficit. The pitch deficit of amusia is thus not limited to music, but may compromise the ability to process and learn tonal languages. Combined with acoustic analyses of the tone material, the present findings provide new insights into the nature of the pitch-processing deficit exhibited by amusics.
Although background noise cancellation for speech or electrocardiographic recording is well established, however when the background noise contains vocal noises and the main signal is a breath sound...
Stevens, Kimberly A; Thomson, Scott L; Jetté, Marie E; Thibeault, Susan L
The aim of this study was to quantify porcine vocal fold medial surface geometry and three-dimensional geometric distortion induced by freezing the larynx, especially in the region of the vocal folds. The medial surface geometries of five excised porcine larynges were quantified and reported. Five porcine larynges were imaged in a micro-CT scanner, frozen, and rescanned. Segmentations and three-dimensional reconstructions were used to quantify and characterize geometric features. Comparisons were made with geometry data previously obtained using canine and human vocal folds as well as geometries of selected synthetic vocal fold models. Freezing induced an overall expansion of approximately 5% in the transverse plane and comparable levels of nonuniform distortion in sagittal and coronal planes. The medial surface of the porcine vocal folds was found to compare reasonably well with other geometries, although the compared geometries exhibited a notable discrepancy with one set of published human female vocal fold geometry. Porcine vocal folds are qualitatively geometrically similar to data available for canine and human vocal folds, as well as commonly used models. Freezing of tissue in the larynx causes distortion of around 5%. The data can provide direction in estimating uncertainty due to bulk distortion of tissue caused by freezing, as well as quantitative geometric data that can be directly used in developing vocal fold models. Copyright © 2016 The Voice Foundation. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Chen, Wenli; Woo, Peak; Murry, Thomas
High-speed videoendoscopy (HSV) captures direct cycle-to-cycle visualization of vocal fold movement in real time. This ultrafast recording rate is capable of visualizing the vibratory motion of the vocal folds in severely disordered phonation and provides a direct method for examining vibratory changes after vocal fold surgery. The purpose of this study was to examine the vibratory motion before and after surgical intervention. HSV was captured from two subjects with identifiable midvocal fold benign lesions and six subjects with highly aperiodic vocal fold vibration before and after phonosurgery. Digital kymography (DKG) was used to extract high-speed kymographic vocal fold images sampled at the midmembranous, anterior 1/3, and posterior 1/3 region. Spectral analysis was subsequently applied to the DKG to quantify the cycle-to-cycle movements of the left and the right vocal fold, expressed as a spectrum. Before intervention, the vibratory spectrum consisted of decreased and flat-like spectral peaks with robust power asymmetry. After intervention, increases in spectral power and decreases in power symmetry were noted. Spectral power increases were most remarkable in the midmembranous region of the vocal fold. Surgical modification resulted in improved lateral excursion of the vocal folds, vibratory function, and perceptual measures of Voice Handicap Index-10. These changes in vibratory behavior trended toward normal vocal fold vibration. Copyright © 2016 The Voice Foundation. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Wang, Xiao-Dong; Wang, Ming; Chen, Lin
In Mandarin Chinese, a tonal language, pitch level and pitch contour are two dimensions of lexical tones according to their acoustic features (i.e., pitch patterns). A change in pitch level features a step change whereas that in pitch contour features a continuous variation in voice pitch. Currently, relatively little is known about the hemispheric lateralization for the processing of each dimension. To address this issue, we made whole-head electrical recordings of mismatch negativity in native Chinese speakers in response to the contrast of Chinese lexical tones in each dimension. We found that pre-attentive auditory processing of pitch level was obviously lateralized to the right hemisphere whereas there is a tendency for that of pitch contour to be lateralized to the left. We also found that the brain responded faster to pitch level than to pitch contour at a pre-attentive stage. These results indicate that the hemispheric lateralization for early auditory processing of lexical tones depends on the pitch level and pitch contour, and suggest an underlying inter-hemispheric interactive mechanism for the processing. © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Petr S. Vetshev
Full Text Available Purpose. To study a possibility of performance and diagnostic accuracy of ultrasonography (US of a larynx in identification of motility disorders of VF (vocal folds in comparison with the laryngoscope which is traditionally applied for this purpose. Materials and methods. According to the objectives of the study, two patient groups were formed. In first group of patients (n = 466 we studied acceptability of ultrasonografy to discriminate various laryngeal structures. In second group of patient (n = 432 we evaluated the diagnostic accuracy of ultrasonography in point of detection of vocal muscles paresis. Results. Laryngeal structures were available to examination by ultrasound (without taking in account age and sex in 92.7% of patients. Two patterns have been identified in the course of this part of the study: deterioration of visibility of the vocal folds with increasing patient age and better visibility of the vocal folds in women than in men. According to the comparative analysis, ultrasonography accuracy rate (in those patients who had had clearly visible vocal folds during ultrasonography did not differ from that during videolaryngoscopy. Conclusion. During the conducted research it was found that the US of the larynx is an effective and perspective method for detection of a paresis of VF with sensitivity and specificity 93,55% and 100% respectively. Among those patients who' VF are available to ultrasound evaluation the accuracy of method is comparable with a videolaryngoscopy and can be used with success in daily work of units of endocrine surgery.
Rodents produce highly variable ultrasound whistles as communication signals unlike many other mammals, who employ flow-induced vocal fold oscillations to produce sound. The role of larynx muscles in controlling sound features across different call types in ultrasound vocalization (USV) was investigated using laryngeal muscle electromyographic (EMG) activity, subglottal pressure measurements and vocal sound output in awake and spontaneously behaving Sprague–Dawley rats. Results support the hypothesis that glottal shape determines fundamental frequency. EMG activities of thyroarytenoid and cricothyroid muscles were aligned with call duration. EMG intensity increased with fundamental frequency. Phasic activities of both muscles were aligned with fast changing fundamental frequency contours, for example in trills. Activities of the sternothyroid and sternohyoid muscles, two muscles involved in vocal production in other mammals, are not critical for the production of rat USV. To test how stereotypic laryngeal and respiratory activity are across call types and individuals, sets of ten EMG and subglottal pressure parameters were measured in six different call types from six rats. Using discriminant function analysis, on average 80% of parameter sets were correctly assigned to their respective call type. This was significantly higher than the chance level. Since fundamental frequency features of USV are tightly associated with stereotypic activity of intrinsic laryngeal muscles and muscles contributing to build-up of subglottal pressure, USV provide insight into the neurophysiological control of peripheral vocal motor patterns. PMID:23423862
Linhart, P.; Šálek, Martin
Roč. 12, č. 5 (2017), č. článku e0177206. E-ISSN 1932-6203 Institutional support: RVO:68081766 Keywords : owl Athene noctua * classification methods * population decline * Bubo bubo * recognition * vocalizations * auditory discrimination * frequency modulation Subject RIV: EG - Zoology OBOR OECD: Zoology Impact factor: 2.806, year: 2016
Saint Romain, J.L.; Lahaye, J.; Ehrburger, P.; Couderc, P.
Capillary flow of liquid coal tar pitch into a coke bed was studied. Anomalies in the flow could not be attributed to a plugging effect for mesophase content lower than 20 wt%. The flow behaviour of small pitch droplets can be correlated with the change in physicochemical properties, as measured by the glass transition temperature, on penetration into the coke bed. 4 references.
Ammirante, Paolo; Thompson, William F; Russo, Frank A
The ideomotor principle predicts that perception will modulate action where overlap exists between perceptual and motor representations of action. This effect is demonstrated with auditory stimuli. Previous perceptual evidence suggests that pitch contour and pitch distance in tone sequences may elicit tonal motion effects consistent with listeners' implicit awareness of the lawful dynamics of locomotive bodies. To examine modulating effects of perception on action, participants in a continuation tapping task produced a steady tempo. Auditory tones were triggered by each tap. Pitch contour randomly and persistently varied within trials. Pitch distance between successive tones varied between trials. Although participants were instructed to ignore them, tones systematically affected finger dynamics and timing. Where pitch contour implied positive acceleration, the following tap and the intertap interval (ITI) that it completed were faster. Where pitch contour implied negative acceleration, the following tap and the ITI that it completed were slower. Tempo was faster with greater pitch distance. Musical training did not predict the magnitude of these effects. There were no generalized effects on timing variability. Pitch contour findings demonstrate how tonal motion may elicit the spontaneous production of accents found in expressive music performance.
Mao, Yitao; Zhang, Mengchao; Nutter, Heather; Zhang, Yijing; Zhou, Qixin; Liu, Qiaoyun; Wu, Weijing; Xie, Dinghua; Xu, Li
The purpose of the present study was to investigate vocal singing performance of hearing-impaired children with cochlear implants (CI) and hearing aids (HA) as well as to evaluate the relationship between demographic factors of those hearing-impaired children and their singing ability. Thirty-seven prelingually-deafened children with CIs and 31 prelingually-deafened children with HAs, and 37 normal-hearing (NH) children participated in the study. The fundamental frequencies (F0) of each note in the recorded songs were extracted and the duration of each sung note was measured. Five metrics were used to evaluate the pitch-related and rhythm-based aspects of singing accuracy. Children with CIs and HAs showed significantly poorer performance in either the pitch-based assessments or the rhythm-based measure than the NH children. No significant differences were seen between the CI and HA groups in all of these measures except for the mean deviation of the pitch intervals. For both hearing-impaired groups, length of device use was significantly correlated with singing accuracy. There is a marked deficit in vocal singing ability either in pitch or rhythm accuracy in a majority of prelingually-deafened children who have received CIs or fitted with HAs. Although an increased length of device use might facilitate singing performance to some extent, the chance for the hearing-impaired children fitted with either HAs or CIs to reach high proficiency in singing is quite slim. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.
Ehrburger, P.; Martin, C.; Lahaye, J.; Saint-Romain, J.L.; Couderc, P.
Pitch materials have generally a very complex composition with molecular mass ranging from a few hundred to several thousands units. In order to characterize these materials their properties related to the glassy transformation, in particular to enthalpy relaxation, have been investigated. Solvent soluble fractions have been characterized by differential scanning calorimetry (DSC). As with polymeric materials, enthalpy relaxation can provide information about pitches and the interactions occurring between the different types of molecules present in the pitch: mean molecular size, structural factor, molecular-size distribution. The determination of glass transition properties provides a useful means for the characterization of pitch and of their solvent extracts. It also permits insight into the complex reactions which occur when pitch materials are heat-treated. 7 refs., 2 figs., 3 tabs.
The present study analyzed the acoustic and perceptual differences in non-singer's singing voice before and after a vocal warm-up. Experiments were conducted with 12 females who had no singing experience and considered themselves to be non-singers. Participants were recorded performing 3 tasks: a musical scale stretching to their most comfortable high and low pitches, sustained productions of the vowels /a/ and /i/, and singing performance of the "Star Spangled Banner." Participants were recorded performing these three tasks before a vocal warm-up, after a vocal warm-up, and then again 2-3 weeks later after 2-3 weeks of practice. Acoustical analysis consisted of formant frequency analysis, singer's formant/singing power ratio analysis, maximum phonation frequency range analysis, and an analysis of jitter, noise to harmonic ratio (NHR), relative average perturbation (RAP), and voice turbulence index (VTI). A perceptual analysis was also conducted with 12 listeners rating comparison performances of before vs. after the vocal warm-up, before vs. after the second vocal warm-up, and after both vocal warm-ups. There were no significant findings for the formant frequency analysis of the vowel /a/, but there was significance for the 1st formant frequency analysis of the vowel /i/. Singer's formant analyzed via Singing Power Ratio analysis showed significance only for the vowel /i/. Maximum phonation frequency range analysis showed a significant increase after the vocal warm-ups. There were no significant findings for the acoustic measures of jitter, NHR, RAP, and VTI. Perceptual analysis showed a significant difference after a vocal warm-up. The results indicate that a singing vocal warm-up can have a significant positive influence on the singing voice of non-singers.
Feng, Ling; Nielsen, Andreas Brinch; Hansen, Lars Kai
This paper explores the vocal and non-vocal music classification problem within popular songs. A newly built labeled database covering 147 popular songs is announced. It is designed for classifying signals from 1sec time windows. Features are selected for this particular task, in order to capture...
Nathani, Suneeti; Oller, D. Kimbrough; Cobo-Lewis, Alan B.
Sought to verify research findings that suggest there may be a U-shaped developmental trajectory for final syllable lengthening (FSL). Attempted to determine whether vocal maturity and deafness influence FSL . Eight normally hearing infants and eight deaf infants were examined at three levels of prelinguistic vocal development. (Author/VWL)
Hartog, Paula Maria den
Avian vocalizations function in mate attraction and territorial defence. Vocalizations can act as behavioural barriers and play an important role in speciation processes. Hybrid zones illustrate behavioural barriers are not always impermeable and provide a natural laboratory to examine the role of
Juan Pablo Amaya
Full Text Available The underground environment poses particular communication challenges for subterranean rodents. Some loud and low-pitched acoustic signals that can travel long distances are appropriate for long-range underground communication and have been suggested to be territorial signals. Long-range vocalizations (LRVs are important in long-distance communication in Ctenomys tuco-tucos. We characterized the LRV of the Anillaco Tuco-Tuco (Ctenomys sp. using recordings from free-living individuals and described the behavioral context in which this vocalization was produced during laboratory staged encounters between individuals of both sexes. Long-range calls of Anillaco tuco-tucos are low-frequency, broad-band, loud, and long sounds composed by the repetition of two syllable types: series (formed by notes and soft-notes and individual notes. All vocalizations were initiated with series, but not all had individual notes. Males were heavier than females and gave significantly lower-pitched vocalizations, but acoustic features were independent of body mass in males. The pronounced variation among individuals in the arrangement and number of syllables and the existence of three types of series (dyads, triads, and tetrads, created a diverse collection of syntactic patterns in vocalizations that would provide the opportunity to encode multiple types of information. The existence of complex syntactic patterns and the description of soft-notes represent new aspects of the vocal communication of Ctenomys. Long-distance vocalizations by Anillaco Tuco-Tucos appear to be territorial signals used mostly in male-male interactions. First, emission of LRVs resulted in de-escalation or space-keeping in male-male and male-female encounters in laboratory experiments. Second, these vocalizations were produced most frequently (in the field and in the lab by males in our study population. Third, males produced LRVs with greater frequency during male-male encounters compared to
Haagensen, Annika M. J.; Grand, Nanna; Klastrup, Signe
Two methods investigating learning and memory in juvenile Gottingen minipigs were evaluated for potential use in preclinical toxicity testing. Twelve minipigs were tested using a spatial hole-board discrimination test including a learning phase and two memory phases. Five minipigs were tested...... in a visual discrimination test. The juvenile minipigs were able to learn the spatial hole-board discrimination test and showed improved working and reference memory during the learning phase. Performance in the memory phases was affected by the retention intervals, but the minipigs were able to remember...... the concept of the test in both memory phases. Working memory and reference memory were significantly improved in the last trials of the memory phases. In the visual discrimination test, the minipigs learned to discriminate between the three figures presented to them within 9-14 sessions. For the memory test...
Huang, Chengcheng; Rinzel, John
Pitch is a perceptual correlate of periodicity. Sounds with distinct spectra can elicit the same pitch. Despite the importance of pitch perception, understanding the cellular mechanism of pitch perception is still a major challenge and a mechanistic model of pitch is lacking. A multi-stage neuronal network model is developed for pitch frequency estimation using biophysically-based, high-resolution coincidence detector neurons. The neuronal units respond only to highly coincident input among c...
Tüzüner, Arzu; Demirci, Sule; Yavanoglu, Ahmet; Kurkcuoglu, Melih; Arslan, Necmi
Reinke edema is one of the common cause of dysphonia middle-aged population, and severe thickening of vocal folds require surgical treatment. Smoking plays a major role on etiology. Vocal fold cysts are also benign lesions and vocal trauma blamed for acquired cysts. We would like to present 3 cases with vocal fold cyst related with Reinke edema. First case had a subepidermal epidermoid cyst with Reinke edema, which could be easily observed before surgery during laryngostroboscopy. Second case had a mucous retention cyst into the edematous Reinke tissue, which was detected during surgical intervention, and third case had a epidermoid cyst that occurred 2 months after before microlaryngeal operation regarding Reinke edema reduction. These 3 cases revealed that surgical management of Reinke edema needs a careful dissection and close follow-up after surgery for presence of vocal fold cysts.
Chen, Hao; Sun, Jing Wu; Wan, Guang Lun; Hu, Yan Ming
To explore the character of laryngoscopy finding, voice, and therapy of vocal fold fibrous mass. Clinical data, morphology, voice character, surgery and pathology of 15 cases with vocal fold fibrous mass were analyzed. The morbidity of vocal fold fibrous mass might be related to overuse of voice and laryngopharyngeal reflex. Laryngoscopy revealed shuttle line appearance, smoothness and decreased mucosal wave of vocal fold. These patients were invalid for voice training and might be improved by surgery, but recovery is slow. The morbidity of vocal fold fibrous mass might be related to overuse of voice and laryngopharyngeal reflex. Conservative treatment is ineffective for this disease, and surgery might improve. Copyright© by the Editorial Department of Journal of Clinical Otorhinolaryngology Head and Neck Surgery.
Hintze, Justin M; Gnagi, Sharon H; Lott, David G
Bilateral true vocal fold paralysis is rarely attributable to inflammatory diseases. Sarcoidosis is a rare but important etiology of bilateral true vocal fold paralysis by compressive lymphadenopathy, granulomatous infiltration, and neural involvement. We describe the first reported case of sarcoidosis presenting as bilateral vocal fold immobility caused by direct fixation by granulomatous infiltration severe enough to necessitate tracheostomy insertion. In addition, we discuss the presentation, the pathophysiology, and the treatment of this disease with a review of the literature of previously reported cases of sarcoidosis-related vocal fold immobility. Sarcoidosis should therefore be an important consideration for the otolaryngologist's differential diagnosis of true vocal fold immobility. Copyright © 2018 The Voice Foundation. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Mirror neurons are theorized to serve as a neural substrate for spoken language in humans, but the existence and functions of auditory-vocal mirror neurons in the human brain remain largely matters of speculation. Songbirds resemble humans in their capacity for vocal learning and depend on their learned songs to facilitate courtship and individual recognition. Recent neurophysiological studies have detected putative auditory-vocal mirror neurons in a sensorimotor region of the songbird's brain that plays an important role in expressive and receptive aspects of vocal communication. This review discusses the auditory and motor-related properties of these cells, considers their potential role on song learning and communication in relation to classical studies of birdsong, and points to the circuit and developmental mechanisms that may give rise to auditory-vocal mirroring in the songbird's brain.
Mirror neurons are theorized to serve as a neural substrate for spoken language in humans, but the existence and functions of auditory–vocal mirror neurons in the human brain remain largely matters of speculation. Songbirds resemble humans in their capacity for vocal learning and depend on their learned songs to facilitate courtship and individual recognition. Recent neurophysiological studies have detected putative auditory–vocal mirror neurons in a sensorimotor region of the songbird's brain that plays an important role in expressive and receptive aspects of vocal communication. This review discusses the auditory and motor-related properties of these cells, considers their potential role on song learning and communication in relation to classical studies of birdsong, and points to the circuit and developmental mechanisms that may give rise to auditory–vocal mirroring in the songbird's brain. PMID:24778375
Postma, G N; Courey, M S; Ossoff, R H
Microvascular lesions, also called varices or capillary ectasias, in contrast to vocal fold polyps with telangiectatic vessels, are relatively small lesions arising from the microcirculation of the vocal fold. Varices are most commonly seen in female professional vocalists and may be secondary to repetitive trauma, hormonal variations, or repeated inflammation. Microvascular lesions may either be asymptomatic or cause frank dysphonia by interrupting the normal vibratory pattern, mass, or closure of the vocal folds. They may also lead to vocal fold hemorrhage, scarring, or polyp formation. Laryngovideostroboscopy is the key in determining the functional significance of vocal fold varices. Management of patients with a varix includes medical therapy, speech therapy, and occasionally surgical vaporization. Indications for surgery are recurrent hemorrhage, enlargement of the varix, development of a mass in conjunction with the varix or hemorrhage, and unacceptable dysphonia after maximal medical and speech therapy due to a functionally significant varix.
Albouy, Philippe; Cousineau, Marion; Caclin, Anne; Tillmann, Barbara; Peretz, Isabelle
Recent theories suggest that the basis of neurodevelopmental auditory disorders such as dyslexia or specific language impairment might be a low-level sensory dysfunction. In the present study we test this hypothesis in congenital amusia, a neurodevelopmental disorder characterized by severe deficits in the processing of pitch-based material. We manipulated the temporal characteristics of auditory stimuli and investigated the influence of the time given to encode pitch information on participants' performance in discrimination and short-term memory. Our results show that amusics' performance in such tasks scales with the duration available to encode acoustic information. This suggests that in auditory neuro-developmental disorders, abnormalities in early steps of the auditory processing can underlie the high-level deficits (here musical disabilities). Observing that the slowing down of temporal dynamics improves amusics' pitch abilities allows considering this approach as a potential tool for remediation in developmental auditory disorders.
Grebner, Dawn M.
The scientific goal of this dissertation was to carefully study the signal structure of killer whale communications and vocal complexity and link them to behavioral circumstances. The overall objective of this research sought to provide insight into killer whale call content and usage which may be conveying information to conspecifics in order to maintain group cohesion. Data were collected in the summers of 2006 and 2007 in Johnstone Strait, British Columbia. For both individuals and small groups, vocalizations were isolated using a triangular hydrophone array and the behavioral movement patterns were captured by a theodolite and video camera positioned on a cliff overlooking the hyrophone locations. This dissertation is divided into four analysis chapters. In Chapter 3, discriminant analysis was used to validate the four N04 call subtypes which were originally parsed due to variations in slope segments. The first two functions of the discriminant analysis explained 97% of the variability. Most of the variability for the N04 call was found in the front convex and the terminal portions of the call, while very little variability was found in the center region of the call. This research revealed that individual killer whales produced multiple subtypes of the N04 call. No correlations of behaviors to acoustic parameters obtained were found. The aim of the Chapter 4 was to determine if killer whale calling behavior varied prior to and after the animals had joined. Pulsed call rates were found to be greater pre- compared to post-joining events. Two-way vocal exchanges were more common occurring 74% of the time during pre-joining events. In Chapter 5, initiated and first response to calls varied between age/sex class groups when mothers were separated from an offspring. Solo mothers and calves initiated pulsed calls more often than they responded. Most of the no vocal responses were due to mothers who were foraging. Finally, observations of the frequency split in N04
Weise, Annekathrin; Grimm, Sabine; Trujillo-Barreto, Nelson J.; Schröger, Erich
The human central auditory system can automatically extract abstract regularities from a variant auditory input. To this end, temporarily separated events need to be related. This study tested whether the timing between events, falling either within or outside the temporal window of integration (~350 ms), impacts the extraction of abstract feature relations. We utilized tone pairs for which tones within but not across pairs revealed a constant pitch relation (e.g., pitch of second tone of a pair higher than pitch of first tone, while absolute pitch values varied across pairs). We measured the mismatch negativity (MMN; the brain’s error signal to auditory regularity violations) to second tones that rarely violated the pitch relation (e.g., pitch of second tone lower). A Short condition in which tone duration (90 ms) and stimulus onset asynchrony between the tones of a pair were short (110 ms) was compared to two conditions, where this onset asynchrony was long (510 ms). In the Long Gap condition, the tone durations were identical to Short (90 ms), but the silent interval was prolonged by 400 ms. In Long Tone, the duration of the first tone was prolonged by 400 ms, while the silent interval was comparable to Short (20 ms). Results show a frontocentral MMN of comparable amplitude in all conditions. Thus, abstract pitch relations can be extracted even when the within-pair timing exceeds the integration period. Source analyses indicate MMN generators in the supratemporal cortex. Interestingly, they were located more anterior in Long Gap than in Short and Long Tone. Moreover, frontal generator activity was found for Long Gap and Long Tone. Thus, the way in which the system automatically registers irregular abstract pitch relations depends on the timing of the events to be linked. Pending that the current MMN data mirror established abstract rule representations coding the regular pitch relation, neural processes building these templates vary with timing. PMID:24966823
Full Text Available The human central auditory system can automatically extract abstract regularities from a variant auditory input. To this end, temporarily separated events need to be related. This study tested whether the timing between events, falling either within or outside the temporal window of integration (~350 ms, impacts the extraction of abstract feature relations. We utilized tone pairs for which tones within but not across pairs revealed a constant pitch relation (e.g. pitch of 2nd tone of a pair higher than pitch of 1st tone, while absolute pitch values varied across pairs. We measured the Mismatch Negativity (MMN; the brain’s error signal to auditory regularity violations to 2nd tones that rarely violated the pitch relation (e.g. pitch of 2nd tone lower. A Short condition in which tone duration (90 ms and stimulus onset asynchrony between the tones of a pair were short (110 ms was compared to two conditions, where this onset asynchrony was long (510 ms. In the Long Gap condition the tone durations were identical to Short (90 ms, but the silent interval was prolonged by 400 ms. In Long Tone the duration of the first tone was prolonged by 400 ms, while the silent interval was comparable to Short (20 ms. Results show a frontocentral MMN of comparable amplitude in all conditions. Thus, abstract pitch relations can be extracted even when the within-pair timing exceeds the integration period. Source analyses indicate MMN generators in the supratemporal cortex. Interestingly, they were located more anterior in Long Gap than in Short and Long Tone. Moreover, frontal generator activity was found for Long Gap and Long Tone. Thus, the way in which the system automatically registers irregular abstract pitch relations depends on the timing of the events to be linked. Pending that the current MMN data mirror established abstract rule representations coding the regular pitch relation, neural processes building these templates vary with timing.
Full Text Available Transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS is attracting increasing interest because of its potential for therapeutic use. While its effects have been investigated mainly with motor and visual tasks, less is known in the auditory domain. Past tDCS studies with auditory tasks demonstrated various behavioural outcomes, possibly due to differences in stimulation parameters or task measurements used in each study. Further research using well-validated tasks are therefore required for clarification of behavioural effects of tDCS on the auditory system. Here, we took advantage of findings from a prior functional magnetic resonance imaging study, which demonstrated that the right auditory cortex is modulated during fine-grained pitch learning of microtonal melodic patterns. Targeting the right auditory cortex with tDCS using this same task thus allowed us to test the hypothesis that this region is causally involved in pitch learning. Participants in the current study were trained for three days while we measured pitch discrimination thresholds using microtonal melodies on each day using a psychophysical staircase procedure. We administered anodal, cathodal, or sham tDCS to three groups of participants over the right auditory cortex on the second day of training during performance of the task. Both the sham and the cathodal groups showed the expected significant learning effect (decreased pitch threshold over the three days of training; in contrast we observed a blocking effect of anodal tDCS on auditory pitch learning, such that this group showed no significant change in thresholds over the three days. The results support a causal role for the right auditory cortex in pitch discrimination learning.
Broeckman, A. [Rijksuniversiteit Utrecht (Netherlands)
In thermal ionization mass spectrometry the phenomenon of mass discrimination has led to the use of a correction factor for isotope ratio-measurements. The correction factor is defined as the measured ratio divided by the true or accepted value of this ratio. In fact this factor corrects for systematic errors of the whole procedure; however mass discrimination is often associated just with the mass spectrometer.
The McMaster framework introduced by Kirshner & Guyatt is the dominant paradigm for the development of measures of health status and health-related quality of life (HRQL). The framework defines the functions of such instruments as evaluative, predictive or discriminative. Evaluative instruments are required to be sensitive to change (responsiveness), but there is no corresponding index of the degree to which discriminative instruments are sensitive to cross-sectional differences. This paper argues that indices of validity and reliability are not sufficient to demonstrate that a discriminative instrument performs its function of discriminating between individuals, and that the McMaster framework would be augmented by the addition of a separate index of discrimination. The coefficient proposed by Ferguson (Delta) is easily adapted to HRQL instruments and is a direct, non-parametric index of the degree to which an instrument distinguishes between individuals. While Delta should prove useful in the development and evaluation of discriminative instruments, further research is required to elucidate the relationship between the measurement properties of discrimination, reliability and responsiveness.
Full Text Available Abstract The McMaster framework introduced by Kirshner & Guyatt is the dominant paradigm for the development of measures of health status and health-related quality of life (HRQL. The framework defines the functions of such instruments as evaluative, predictive or discriminative. Evaluative instruments are required to be sensitive to change (responsiveness, but there is no corresponding index of the degree to which discriminative instruments are sensitive to cross-sectional differences. This paper argues that indices of validity and reliability are not sufficient to demonstrate that a discriminative instrument performs its function of discriminating between individuals, and that the McMaster framework would be augmented by the addition of a separate index of discrimination. The coefficient proposed by Ferguson (Delta is easily adapted to HRQL instruments and is a direct, non-parametric index of the degree to which an instrument distinguishes between individuals. While Delta should prove useful in the development and evaluation of discriminative instruments, further research is required to elucidate the relationship between the measurement properties of discrimination, reliability and responsiveness.
We evaluate a model for pitch sequencing in baseball that is defined by pitch-to-pitch correlation in location, velocity, and movement. The correlations quantify the average similarity of consecutive pitches and provide a measure of the batter's ability to predict the properties of the upcoming pitch. We examine the characteristics of the model for a set of major league pitchers using PITCHf/x data for nearly three million pitches thrown over seven major league seasons. After partitioning the...
Full Text Available Govender firstname.lastname@example.org, Etienne Barnard email@example.com, Marelie Davel firstname.lastname@example.org by varying the levels of pitch, intensity and duration in the voice. An overview of intonation as observed in a variety of languages is provided in [1... nature of laryngograph data in voiced speech) and thus either could be used as the basis for the experiments. The pitch values extracted by Yin for all the laryngograph databases was consequently used as the basis for our comparisons. Pitch...
Leble, V.; Barakos, G.
The possibility of a wind turbine entering vortex ring state during pitching oscillations is explored in this paper. The aerodynamic performance of the rotor was computed using the Helicopter Multi-Block flow solver. This code solves the Navier-Stokes equations in integral form using the arbitrary Lagrangian-Eulerian formulation for time-dependent domains with moving boundaries. A 10-MW wind turbine was put to perform yawing and pitching oscillations suggesting the partial vortex ring state during pitching motion. The results also show the strong effect of the frequency and amplitude of oscillations on the wind turbine performance.
Leble, V; Barakos, G
The possibility of a wind turbine entering vortex ring state during pitching oscillations is explored in this paper. The aerodynamic performance of the rotor was computed using the Helicopter Multi-Block flow solver. This code solves the Navier-Stokes equations in integral form using the arbitrary Lagrangian-Eulerian formulation for time-dependent domains with moving boundaries. A 10-MW wind turbine was put to perform yawing and pitching oscillations suggesting the partial vortex ring state during pitching motion. The results also show the strong effect of the frequency and amplitude of oscillations on the wind turbine performance. (paper)
Shi, Lucy L; Giraldez-Rodriguez, Laureano A; Johns, Michael M
The aim of this study was to illustrate the risk of vocal fold atrophy in patients who receive serial subepithelial steroid injections for vocal fold scar. This study is a retrospective case report of two patients who underwent a series of weekly subepithelial infusions of 10 mg/mL dexamethasone for benign vocal fold lesion. Shortly after the procedures, both patients developed a weak and breathy voice. The first patient was a 53-year-old man with radiation-induced vocal fold stiffness. Six injections were performed unilaterally, and 1 week later, he developed unilateral vocal fold atrophy with new glottal insufficiency. The second patient was a 67-year-old woman with severe vocal fold inflammation related to laryngitis and calcinosis, Raynaud's phenomenon, esophagean dysmotility, sclerodactyly, and telangiectasia (CREST) syndrome. Five injections were performed bilaterally, and 1 week later, she developed bilateral vocal fold atrophy with a large midline glottal gap during phonation. In both cases, the steroid-induced vocal atrophy resolved spontaneously after 4 months. Serial subepithelial steroid infusions of the vocal folds, although safe in the majority of patients, carry the risk of causing temporary vocal fold atrophy when given at short intervals. Copyright Â© 2016 The Voice Foundation. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Zhang, Peter Xinya; Hartmann, William M.
The lateralization of the Huggins pitch (HP) was measured using a direct estimation method. The background noise was initially N0 or Nπ, and then the laterality of the entire stimulus was varied with a frequency-independent interaural delay, ranging from -1 to +1 ms. Two versions of the HP boundary region were used, stepped phase and linear phase. When presented in isolation, without the broadband background, the stepped boundary can be lateralized on its own but the linear boundary cannot. Nevertheless, the lateralizations of both forms of HP were found to be almost identical functions both of the interaural delay and of the boundary frequency over a two-octave range. In a third experiment, the same listeners lateralized sine tones in quiet as a function of interaural delay. Good agreement was found between lateralizations of the HP and of the corresponding sine tones. The lateralization judgments depended on the boundary frequency according to the expected hyperbolic law except when the frequency-independent delay was zero. For the latter case, the dependence on boundary frequency was much slower than hyperbolic. [Work supported by the NIDCD grant DC 00181.
Michelle L Hall
Full Text Available Body size is a key sexually selected trait in many animal species. If size imposes a physical limit on the production of loud low-frequency sounds, then low-pitched vocalisations could act as reliable signals of body size. However, the central prediction of this hypothesis--that the pitch of vocalisations decreases with size among competing individuals--has limited support in songbirds. One reason could be that only the lowest-frequency components of vocalisations are constrained, and this may go unnoticed when vocal ranges are large. Additionally, the constraint may only be apparent in contexts when individuals are indeed advertising their size. Here we explicitly consider signal diversity and performance limits to demonstrate that body size limits song frequency in an advertising context in a songbird. We show that in purple-crowned fairy-wrens, Malurus coronatus coronatus, larger males sing lower-pitched low-frequency advertising songs. The lower frequency bound of all advertising song types also has a significant negative relationship with body size. However, the average frequency of all their advertising songs is unrelated to body size. This comparison of different approaches to the analysis demonstrates how a negative relationship between body size and song frequency can be obscured by failing to consider signal design and the concept of performance limits. Since these considerations will be important in any complex communication system, our results imply that body size constraints on low-frequency vocalisations could be more widespread than is currently recognised.
Hall, Michelle L; Kingma, Sjouke A; Peters, Anne
Body size is a key sexually selected trait in many animal species. If size imposes a physical limit on the production of loud low-frequency sounds, then low-pitched vocalisations could act as reliable signals of body size. However, the central prediction of this hypothesis--that the pitch of vocalisations decreases with size among competing individuals--has limited support in songbirds. One reason could be that only the lowest-frequency components of vocalisations are constrained, and this may go unnoticed when vocal ranges are large. Additionally, the constraint may only be apparent in contexts when individuals are indeed advertising their size. Here we explicitly consider signal diversity and performance limits to demonstrate that body size limits song frequency in an advertising context in a songbird. We show that in purple-crowned fairy-wrens, Malurus coronatus coronatus, larger males sing lower-pitched low-frequency advertising songs. The lower frequency bound of all advertising song types also has a significant negative relationship with body size. However, the average frequency of all their advertising songs is unrelated to body size. This comparison of different approaches to the analysis demonstrates how a negative relationship between body size and song frequency can be obscured by failing to consider signal design and the concept of performance limits. Since these considerations will be important in any complex communication system, our results imply that body size constraints on low-frequency vocalisations could be more widespread than is currently recognised.
Benboujja, Fouzi; Garcia, Jordan; Beaudette, Kathy; Strupler, Mathias; Hartnick, Christopher J.; Boudoux, Caroline
Excessive and repetitive force applied on vocal fold tissue can induce benign vocal fold lesions. Children affected suffer from chronic hoarseness. In this instance, the vibratory ability of the folds, a complex layered microanatomy, becomes impaired. Histological findings have shown that lesions produce a remodeling of sup-epithelial vocal fold layers. However, our understanding of lesion features and development is still limited. Indeed, conventional imaging techniques do not allow a non-invasive assessment of sub-epithelial integrity of the vocal fold. Furthermore, it remains challenging to differentiate these sub-epithelial lesions (such as bilateral nodules, polyps and cysts) from a clinical perspective, as their outer surfaces are relatively similar. As treatment strategy differs for each lesion type, it is critical to efficiently differentiate sub-epithelial alterations involved in benign lesions. In this study, we developed an optical coherence tomography (OCT) based handheld probe suitable for pediatric laryngological imaging. The probe allows for rapid three-dimensional imaging of vocal fold lesions. The system is adapted to allow for high-resolution intra-operative imaging. We imaged 20 patients undergoing direct laryngoscopy during which we looked at different benign pediatric pathologies such as bilateral nodules, cysts and laryngeal papillomatosis and compared them to healthy tissue. We qualitatively and quantitatively characterized laryngeal pathologies and demonstrated the added advantage of using 3D OCT imaging for lesion discrimination and margin assessment. OCT evaluation of the integrity of the vocal cord could yield to a better pediatric management of laryngeal diseases.
Welham, Nathan V.; Montequin, Douglas W.; Tateya, Ichiro; Tateya, Tomoko; Choi, Seong Hee; Bless, Diane M.
Purpose: To develop and evaluate a rat excised larynx model for the measurement of acoustic, aerodynamic, and vocal fold vibratory changes resulting from vocal fold scar. Method: Twenty-four 4-month-old male Sprague-Dawley rats were assigned to 1 of 4 experimental groups: chronic vocal fold scar, chronic vocal fold scar treated with 100-ng basic…
Weiss, Michael W; Vanzella, Patrícia; Schellenberg, E Glenn; Trehub, Sandra E
Nonmusicians remember vocal melodies (i.e., sung to la la) better than instrumental melodies. If greater exposure to the voice contributes to those effects, then long-term experience with instrumental timbres should elicit instrument-specific advantages. Here we evaluate this hypothesis by comparing pianists with other musicians and nonmusicians. We also evaluate the possibility that absolute pitch (AP), which involves exceptional memory for isolated pitches, influences melodic memory. Participants heard 24 melodies played in four timbres (voice, piano, banjo, marimba) and were subsequently required to distinguish the melodies heard previously from 24 novel melodies presented in the same timbres. Musicians performed better than nonmusicians, but both groups showed a comparable memory advantage for vocal melodies. Moreover, pianists performed no better on melodies played on piano than on other instruments, and AP musicians performed no differently than non-AP musicians. The findings confirm the robust nature of the voice advantage and rule out explanations based on familiarity, practice, and motor representations.
THIS ARTICLE DISCUSSES THE POSSIBLE HOMOLOGIES BETWEEN THE HUMAN LANGUAGE NETWORKS AND COMPARABLE AUDITORY PROJECTION SYSTEMS IN THE MACAQUE BRAIN, IN AN ATTEMPT TO RECONCILE TWO EXISTING VIEWS ON LANGUAGE EVOLUTION: one that emphasizes hand control and gestures, and the other that emphasizes auditory-vocal mechanisms. The capacity for language is based on relatively well defined neural substrates whose rudiments have been traced in the non-human primate brain. At its core, this circuit constitutes an auditory-vocal sensorimotor circuit with two main components, a "ventral pathway" connecting anterior auditory regions with anterior ventrolateral prefrontal areas, and a "dorsal pathway" connecting auditory areas with parietal areas and with posterior ventrolateral prefrontal areas via the arcuate fasciculus and the superior longitudinal fasciculus. In humans, the dorsal circuit is especially important for phonological processing and phonological working memory, capacities that are critical for language acquisition and for complex syntax processing. In the macaque, the homolog of the dorsal circuit overlaps with an inferior parietal-premotor network for hand and gesture selection that is under voluntary control, while vocalizations are largely fixed and involuntary. The recruitment of the dorsal component for vocalization behavior in the human lineage, together with a direct cortical control of the subcortical vocalizing system, are proposed to represent a fundamental innovation in human evolution, generating an inflection point that permitted the explosion of vocal language and human communication. In this context, vocal communication and gesturing have a common history in primate communication.
Compin, S.; Ben Aim, R.; Couderc, P.; Saint-Romain, J.L.
This paper discusses modification of the impregnation performance of various pitches. The filtration ability, which expresses the impregnation performance, was studied using gel permeation chromatography and scanning electron microscopy. 16 refs., 5 figs., 2 tabs.
National Aeronautics and Space Administration — The Pitch Synchronous Segmentation (PSS) that accelerates speech without changing its fundamental frequency method could be applied and evaluated for use at NASA....
Full Text Available Isolation calls produced by dependent young are a fundamental form of communication. For species in which vocal signals remain important to adult communication, the function and social context of vocal behavior changes dramatically with the onset of sexual maturity. The ontogenetic relationship between these distinct forms of acoustic communication is surprisingly under-studied. We conducted a detailed analysis of vocal development in sister species of Neotropical singing mice, Scotinomys teguina and S. xerampelinus. Adult singing mice are remarkable for their advertisement songs, rapidly articulated trills used in long-distance communication; the vocal behavior of pups was previously undescribed. We recorded 30 S. teguina and 15 S. xerampelinus pups daily, from birth to weaning; 23 S. teguina and 11 S. xerampelinus were recorded until sexual maturity. Like other rodent species with poikilothermic young, singing mice were highly vocal during the first weeks of life and stopped vocalizing before weaning. Production of first advertisement songs coincided with the onset of sexual maturity after a silent period of ≧2 weeks. Species differences in vocal behavior emerged early in ontogeny and notes that comprise adult song were produced from birth. However, the organization and relative abundance of distinct note types was very different between pups and adults. Notably, the structure, note repetition rate, and intra-individual repeatability of pup vocalizations did not become more adult-like with age; the highly stereotyped structure of adult song appeared de novo in the first songs of young adults. We conclude that, while the basic elements of adult song are available from birth, distinct selection pressures during maternal dependency, dispersal, and territorial establishment favor major shifts in the structure and prevalence of acoustic signals. This study provides insight into how an evolutionarily conserved form of acoustic signaling provides
Zambon, Fabiana; Moreti, Felipe; Behlau, Mara
To understand the coping strategies used by teachers with vocal complaints, compare the differences between those who seek and those who do not seek voice therapy, and investigate the relationships among coping and voice perceptual analysis, coping and signs and symptoms of voice, and coping and participation restrictions and limitations in vocal activities. Cross-sectional nonrandomized prospective study with control group. Ninety female teachers participated in the study, of similar ages, divided into three groups: group 1 (G1) comprised 30 teachers with vocal complaints who sought voice therapy, group 2 (G2) comprised 30 teachers with vocal complaints who never sought voice therapy, and group 3 (G3) comprised 30 teachers without vocal complaints. The following analysis were conducted: identification and characterization questionnaire, addressing personal and occupational description, recording speech material for voice perceptual analysis, Voice Signs and Symptoms Questionnaire, Voice Activity and Participation Profile (VAPP), and Voice Disability Coping Questionnaire (VDCQ)-Brazilian Version. In relation to the voice perceptual analysis, there was statistically significant difference between the groups with vocal complaint (G1+G2), which had showed voices with mild-to-moderate deviation, and the group without vocal complaint (G1), which showed voices within the normal variability of voice quality (mean for G1 = 49.9, G2 = 43.7, and G3 = 32.3, P Teachers with vocal complaints who looked for voice therapy use more coping strategies. Moreover, they present a tendency to use more problem-focused coping strategies. Voice symptoms prompt the teachers into seeking treatment; however, they are not correlated with the coping itself. In general, the higher the perception of limitation and restriction of participating in vocal activities, the greater the use of coping strategies. Copyright © 2014 The Voice Foundation. Published by Mosby, Inc. All rights reserved.
Collin, G; Koehler, H [Ruetgerswerke A.G., Duisburg (Germany, F.R.)
Coal tar pitch is won as a highly aromatic, thermoplastic residue by destillating coal tar. In this paper the structure as well as the chemical and physical data of this pitch are introduced. In addition to this the actual as well as possible applications are indicated. For example, the pitch can be used for the production of binders, e.g. for electrodes and road construction as well as in combination with plastics for the production of insulating material and corrosion protection material.
Keller, Robert A; Marshall, Nathan E; Guest, John-Michael; Okoroha, Kelechi R; Jung, Edward K; Moutzouros, Vasilios
The number of Major League Baseball (MLB) pitchers requiring ulnar collateral ligament (UCL) reconstructions is increasing. Recent literature has attempted to correlate specific stresses placed on the throwing arm to risk for UCL injury, with limited results. Eighty-three MLB pitchers who underwent primary UCL reconstruction were evaluated. Pitching velocity and percent of pitch type thrown (fastball, curve ball, slider, and change-up) were evaluated 2 years before and after surgery. Data were compared with control pitchers matched for age, position, size, innings pitched, and experience. The evaluation of pitch velocity compared with matched controls found no differences in pre-UCL reconstruction pitch velocities for fastballs (91.5 vs. 91.2 miles per hour [mph], P = .69), curveballs (78.2 vs. 77.9 mph, P = .92), sliders (83.3 vs. 83.5 mph, P = .88), or change-ups (83.9 vs. 83.8 mph, P = .96). When the percentage of pitches thrown was evaluated, UCL reconstructed pitchers pitch significantly more fastballs than controls (46.7% vs. 39.4%, P = .035). This correlated to a 2% increase in risk for UCL injury for every 1% increase in fastballs thrown. Pitching more than 48% fastballs was a significant predictor of UCL injury, because pitchers over this threshold required reconstruction (P = .006). MLB pitchers requiring UCL reconstruction do not pitch at higher velocities than matched controls, and pitch velocity does not appear to be a risk factor for UCL reconstruction. However, MLB pitchers who pitch a high percentage of fastballs may be at increased risk for UCL injury because pitching a higher percent of fastballs appears to be a risk factor for UCL reconstruction. Copyright © 2016 Journal of Shoulder and Elbow Surgery Board of Trustees. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Fernando L. Sicuro
Full Text Available The Paraguayan caiman (Caiman yacare is the main Caimaninae species occurring in the Brazilian Pantanal Wetland. Despite the relative availability of works focused on biology and conservation of the Paraguayan caiman, almost nothing is known about its vocal structure and behavior. We recorded aggressive calls of adult caiman females guarding nests and, afterwards, the distress calls of the new born juvenile caimans in seasonally flooded areas of the Nhecolândia (Southern Pantanal. The results of both observations and sonographic analyses diverged from studies with other crocodilian species. Aggressive vocalization of adult females of the Paraguayan caiman was longer and more complex than the same vocalization of larger Alligatoridae species. Vocalizations of the young caimans presented interspecific differences with other crocodilian offsprings. Moreover, we found statistically significant intraspecific variation in the distress call structure among different pods, even separated by few kilometers. Differences in distress call structure were tested by Canonical Discriminant Analysis (CDA. We obtained the squared Mahalanobis distances between the acoustic multivariate spaces of each pod provided by the CDA and compared with the geographic distance between the bays of origin of each pod through Mantel Test. The geographic distance by itself did not explain the differences found in the structure of the vocalization of young caimans from different pods. The adult females of Paraguayan caiman positively responded to playbacks of calls from juvenile caimans from pods of other regions, as well as to rough imitations of distress call. Since the adult caimans showed protective responses to quite heterogeneous vocalizations of distress by juveniles, we hypothesized that the variation in the distress call pattern may be associated to a low specificity in sound recognition by adult caimans.
Patrick C M Wong
Full Text Available The strong association between music and speech has been supported by recent research focusing on musicians' superior abilities in second language learning and neural encoding of foreign speech sounds. However, evidence for a double association--the influence of linguistic background on music pitch processing and disorders--remains elusive. Because languages differ in their usage of elements (e.g., pitch that are also essential for music, a unique opportunity for examining such language-to-music associations comes from a cross-cultural (linguistic comparison of congenital amusia, a neurogenetic disorder affecting the music (pitch and rhythm processing of about 5% of the Western population. In the present study, two populations (Hong Kong and Canada were compared. One spoke a tone language in which differences in voice pitch correspond to differences in word meaning (in Hong Kong Cantonese, /si/ means 'teacher' and 'to try' when spoken in a high and mid pitch pattern, respectively. Using the On-line Identification Test of Congenital Amusia, we found Cantonese speakers as a group tend to show enhanced pitch perception ability compared to speakers of Canadian French and English (non-tone languages. This enhanced ability occurs in the absence of differences in rhythmic perception and persists even after relevant factors such as musical background and age were controlled. Following a common definition of amusia (5% of the population, we found Hong Kong pitch amusics also show enhanced pitch abilities relative to their Canadian counterparts. These findings not only provide critical evidence for a double association of music and speech, but also argue for the reconceptualization of communicative disorders within a cultural framework. Along with recent studies documenting cultural differences in visual perception, our auditory evidence challenges the common assumption of universality of basic mental processes and speaks to the domain generality of
Wong, Patrick C. M.; Ciocca, Valter; Chan, Alice H. D.; Ha, Louisa Y. Y.; Tan, Li-Hai; Peretz, Isabelle
The strong association between music and speech has been supported by recent research focusing on musicians' superior abilities in second language learning and neural encoding of foreign speech sounds. However, evidence for a double association—the influence of linguistic background on music pitch processing and disorders—remains elusive. Because languages differ in their usage of elements (e.g., pitch) that are also essential for music, a unique opportunity for examining such language-to-music associations comes from a cross-cultural (linguistic) comparison of congenital amusia, a neurogenetic disorder affecting the music (pitch and rhythm) processing of about 5% of the Western population. In the present study, two populations (Hong Kong and Canada) were compared. One spoke a tone language in which differences in voice pitch correspond to differences in word meaning (in Hong Kong Cantonese, /si/ means ‘teacher’ and ‘to try’ when spoken in a high and mid pitch pattern, respectively). Using the On-line Identification Test of Congenital Amusia, we found Cantonese speakers as a group tend to show enhanced pitch perception ability compared to speakers of Canadian French and English (non-tone languages). This enhanced ability occurs in the absence of differences in rhythmic perception and persists even after relevant factors such as musical background and age were controlled. Following a common definition of amusia (5% of the population), we found Hong Kong pitch amusics also show enhanced pitch abilities relative to their Canadian counterparts. These findings not only provide critical evidence for a double association of music and speech, but also argue for the reconceptualization of communicative disorders within a cultural framework. Along with recent studies documenting cultural differences in visual perception, our auditory evidence challenges the common assumption of universality of basic mental processes and speaks to the domain generality of culture
Wong, Patrick C M; Ciocca, Valter; Chan, Alice H D; Ha, Louisa Y Y; Tan, Li-Hai; Peretz, Isabelle
The strong association between music and speech has been supported by recent research focusing on musicians' superior abilities in second language learning and neural encoding of foreign speech sounds. However, evidence for a double association--the influence of linguistic background on music pitch processing and disorders--remains elusive. Because languages differ in their usage of elements (e.g., pitch) that are also essential for music, a unique opportunity for examining such language-to-music associations comes from a cross-cultural (linguistic) comparison of congenital amusia, a neurogenetic disorder affecting the music (pitch and rhythm) processing of about 5% of the Western population. In the present study, two populations (Hong Kong and Canada) were compared. One spoke a tone language in which differences in voice pitch correspond to differences in word meaning (in Hong Kong Cantonese, /si/ means 'teacher' and 'to try' when spoken in a high and mid pitch pattern, respectively). Using the On-line Identification Test of Congenital Amusia, we found Cantonese speakers as a group tend to show enhanced pitch perception ability compared to speakers of Canadian French and English (non-tone languages). This enhanced ability occurs in the absence of differences in rhythmic perception and persists even after relevant factors such as musical background and age were controlled. Following a common definition of amusia (5% of the population), we found Hong Kong pitch amusics also show enhanced pitch abilities relative to their Canadian counterparts. These findings not only provide critical evidence for a double association of music and speech, but also argue for the reconceptualization of communicative disorders within a cultural framework. Along with recent studies documenting cultural differences in visual perception, our auditory evidence challenges the common assumption of universality of basic mental processes and speaks to the domain generality of culture
Saito, Yumi; Yuki, Shoko; Seki, Yoshimasa; Kagawa, Hiroko; Okanoya, Kazuo
Emotional contagion occurs when an individual acquires the emotional state of another via social cues, and is an important component of empathy. Empathic responses seen in rodents are often explained by emotional contagion. Rats emit 50kHz ultrasonic vocalizations (USVs) in positive contexts, and emit 22kHz USVs in negative contexts. We tested whether rats show positive or negative emotional contagion after hearing conspecific USVs via a cognitive bias task. We hypothesized that animals in positive emotional states would perceive an ambiguous cue as being good (optimistic bias) whereas animals in negative states would perceive the same cue as being bad (pessimistic bias). Rats were trained to respond differently to two sounds with distinct pitches, each of which signaled either a positive or a negative outcome. An ambiguous cue with a frequency falling between the two stimuli tested whether rats interpreted it as positive or negative. Results showed that rats responded to ambiguous cues as positive when they heard the 50kHz USV (positive vocalizations) and negative when they heard the 22kHz USV (negative vocalizations). This suggests that conspecific USVs can evoke emotional contagion, both for positive and negative emotions, to change the affective states in receivers. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Yang, Wu-xia; Feng, Jie; Huang, Wan-ting; Zhang, Cheng-xiang; Nan, Yun
Congenital amusia is a musical disorder that mainly affects pitch perception. Among Mandarin speakers, some amusics also have difficulties in processing lexical tones (tone agnosics). To examine to what extent these perceptual deficits may be related to pitch production impairments in music and Mandarin speech, eight amusics, eight tone agnosics, and 12 age- and IQ-matched normal native Mandarin speakers were asked to imitate music note sequences and Mandarin words of comparable lengths. The results indicated that both the amusics and tone agnosics underperformed the controls on musical pitch production. However, tone agnosics performed no worse than the amusics, suggesting that lexical tone perception deficits may not aggravate musical pitch production difficulties. Moreover, these three groups were all able to imitate lexical tones with perfect intelligibility. Taken together, the current study shows that perceptual musical pitch and lexical tone deficits might coexist with musical pitch production difficulties. But at the same time these perceptual pitch deficits might not affect lexical tone production or the intelligibility of the speech words that were produced. The perception-production relationship for pitch among individuals with perceptual pitch deficits may be, therefore, domain-dependent. PMID:24474944
Full Text Available Congenital amusia is a musical disorder that mainly affects pitch perception. Among Mandarin speakers, some amusics also have difficulties in processing lexical tones (tone agnosics. To examine to what extent these perceptual deficits may be related to pitch production impairments in music and Mandarin speech, 8 amusics, 8 tone agnosics, and 12 age- and IQ-matched normal native Mandarin speakers were asked to imitate music note sequences and Mandarin words of comparable lengths. The results indicated that both the amusics and tone agnosics underperformed the controls on musical pitch production. However, tone agnosics performed no worse than the amusics, suggesting that lexical tone perception deficits may not aggravate musical pitch production difficulties. Moreover, these three groups were all able to imitate lexical tones with perfect intelligibility. Taken together, the current study shows that perceptual musical pitch and lexical tone deficits might coexist with musical pitch production difficulties. But at the same time these perceptual pitch deficits might not affect lexical tone production or the intelligibility of the speech words that were produced. The perception-production relationship for pitch among individuals with perceptual pitch deficits may be, therefore, domain-dependent.
Development has been made on element technologies for an esophageal vocalization aid system. With regard to the speaker, selection and trial production were performed on a speaker used for a phono-coupler to be used in coupling with a telephone transmitter. Performance not differing from that in the currently used telephone set was obtained in the overall characteristics evaluation using a dummy telephone circuitry. For the microphone, two kinds of hands-free microphones were fabricated on a trial basis. In order to develop pitch extraction and amplitude pitch conversion systems, pitch extraction performances were compared and discussed on the following five methods: the auto-correlation method, the Cepstram method, the average magnitude difference function (AMDF) method, the simplified inverse filter tracking (SIFT) method, and the time-domain excitation extractor using minimum perturbation operator (TEMPO) method. The hauling phenomenon, having come up as a problem in an auxiliary digital device, was analyzed to discuss methods for prevention thereof. In developing a voice/unvoiced distinction judgment method, a method using low domain power and high domain power was discussed. Development has been made on exclusive ICs, a voice analyzer, and the using feeling enhancing technology. In developing a total system, a digital unit incorporated esophageal vocalization aid system was developed and improved. (NEDO)
Traser, Louisa; Burdumy, Michael; Richter, Bernhard; Vicari, Marco; Echternach, Matthias
Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) of subjects in a supine position can be used to evaluate the configuration of the vocal tract during phonation. However, studies of speech phonation have shown that gravity can affect vocal tract shape and bias measurements. This is one of the reasons that MRI studies of singing phonation have used professionally trained singers as subjects, because they are generally considered to be less affected by the supine body position and environmental distractions. A study of untrained singers might not only contribute to the understanding of intuitive singing function and aid the evaluation of potential hazards for vocal health, but also provide insights into the effect of the supine position on singers in general. In the present study, an open configuration 0.25 T MRI system with a rotatable examination bed was used to study the effect of body position in 20 vocally untrained subjects. The subjects were asked to sing sustained tones in both supine and upright body positions on different pitches and in different register conditions. Morphometric measurements were taken from the acquired images of a sagittal slice depicting the vocal tract. The analysis concerning the vocal tract configuration in the two body positions revealed differences in 5 out of 10 measured articulatory parameters. In the upright position the jaw was less protruded, the uvula was elongated, the larynx more tilted and the tongue was positioned more to the front of the mouth than in the supine position. The findings presented are in agreement with several studies on gravitational effects in speech phonation, but contrast with the results of a previous study on professional singers of our group where only minor differences between upright and supine body posture were observed. The present study demonstrates that imaging of the vocal tract using weight-bearing MR imaging is a feasible tool for the study of sustained phonation in singing for vocally untrained subjects.
Roers, Friederike; Mürbe, Dirk; Sundberg, Johan
Students admitted to the solo singing education at the University of Music Dresden, Germany have been submitted to a detailed physical examination of a variety of factors with relevance to voice function since 1959. In the years 1959-1991, this scheme of examinations included X-ray profiles of the singers' vocal tracts. This material of 132 X-rays of voice professionals was used to investigate different laryngeal morphological measures and their relation to vocal fold length. Further, the study aimed to investigate if there are consistent anatomical differences between singers of different voice classifications. The study design used was a retrospective analysis. Vocal fold length could be measured in 29 of these singer subjects directly. These data showed a strong correlation with the anterior-posterior diameter of the subglottis and the trachea as well as with the distance from the anterior contour of the thyroid cartilage to the anterior contour of the spine. These relations were used in an attempt to predict the 132 singers' vocal fold lengths. The results revealed a clear covariation between predicted vocal fold length and voice classification. Anterior-posterior subglottic-tracheal diameter yielded mean vocal fold lengths of 14.9, 16.0, 16.6, 18.4, 19.5, and 20.9mm for sopranos, mezzo-sopranos, altos, tenors, baritones, and basses, respectively. The data support the assumption that there are consistent anatomical laryngeal differences between singers of different voice classifications, which are of relevance to pitch range and timbre of the voice.
Morrill, Tuuli H; McAuley, J Devin; Dilley, Laura C; Hambrick, David Z
Do the same mechanisms underlie processing of music and language? Recent investigations of this question have yielded inconsistent results. Likely factors contributing to discrepant findings are use of small samples and failure to control for individual differences in cognitive ability. We investigated the relationship between music and speech prosody processing, while controlling for cognitive ability. Participants (n = 179) completed a battery of cognitive ability tests, the Montreal Battery of Evaluation of Amusia (MBEA) to assess music perception, and a prosody test of pitch peak timing discrimination (early, as in insight vs. late, incite). Structural equation modeling revealed that only music perception was a significant predictor of prosody test performance. Music perception accounted for 34.5% of variance on prosody test performance; cognitive abilities and music training added only about 8%. These results indicate musical pitch and temporal processing are highly predictive of pitch discrimination in speech processing, even after controlling for other possible predictors of this aspect of language processing. (c) 2015 APA, all rights reserved).
Janeth Hernández J.
Full Text Available The purpose of this study was to describe laryngeal and acoustic voice hanges associated with laryngeal fatigue (LF in a prolonged loud reading task. LF may be a symptom caused by factors affecting vocal function such as voice overuse, misuse or abuse. LF affects the pitch, intensity and quality of voice and vibratory patterns of vocal folds. Data were collected from 20 subjects in two groups -nonsingers and trained singers who did not have history of voice disorders- prior to and following experimentally induced LF. ResuIts from this compara tive analysis are presented. Findings about individual variations revealeda trend to maintain or increase vocal pitch in post-test measures. Greater hiatus in glottic closure were observed at the end of the task. However, resuIts from this study failed to show statistically significant differences between groups and moments as a result of the prolonged reading task. Relationships between acoustic and videostroboscopic measures and self-reports provided by the participants could not be clearly established. It was concluded that a twohour loud reading task at a comfortable vocalintensity,as used in this investigation, is not enough to induce vocal abuse states conducive to LF. Other possible reasons associated with the resuIts obtained are discussed.
Sorokin, V. N.; Makarov, I. S.
Efficiency of automatic recognition of male and female voices based on solving the inverse problem for glottis area dynamics and for waveform of the glottal airflow volume velocity pulse is studied. The inverse problem is regularized through the use of analytical models of the voice excitation pulse and of the dynamics of the glottis area, as well as the model of one-dimensional glottal airflow. Parameters of these models and spectral parameters of the volume velocity pulse are considered. The following parameters are found to be most promising: the instant of maximum glottis area, the maximum derivative of the area, the slope of the spectrum of the glottal airflow volume velocity pulse, the amplitude ratios of harmonics of this spectrum, and the pitch. On the plane of the first two main components in the space of these parameters, an almost twofold decrease in the classification error relative to that for the pitch alone is attained. The male voice recognition probability is found to be 94.7%, and the female voice recognition probability is 95.9%.
Krauter, K. G. [Lawrence Livermore National Lab. (LLNL), Livermore, CA (United States)
Medical professionals can better serve their patients through continual update of their imaging tools. A wide range of pathologies and disease may afflict human vocal cords or, as they’re also known, vocal folds. These diseases can affect human speech hampering the ability of the patient to communicate. Vocal folds must be opened for breathing and the closed to produce speech. Currently methodologies to image markers of potential pathologies are difficult to use and often fail to detect early signs of disease. These current methodologies rely on a strobe light and slower frame rate camera in an attempt to obtain images as the vocal folds travel over the full extent of their motion.
Full Text Available To date, most speech synthesis techniques have relied upon the representation of the vocal tract by some form of filter, a typical example being linear predictive coding (LPC. This paper describes the development of a physiologically realistic model of the vocal tract using the well-established technique of transmission line modelling (TLM. This technique is based on the principle of wave scattering at transmission line segment boundaries and may be used in one, two, or three dimensions. This work uses this technique to model the vocal tract using a one-dimensional transmission line. A six-port scattering node is applied in the region separating the pharyngeal, oral, and the nasal parts of the vocal tract.
Gökcan, Kürşat Mustafa; Dursun, Gürsel
The aim of the study was to present symptoms, laryngological findings, clinical course, management modalities, and consequences of vascular lesions of vocal fold. This study examined 162 patients, the majority professional voice users, with vascular lesions regarding their presenting symptoms, laryngological findings, clinical courses and treatment results. The most common complaint was sudden hoarseness with hemorrhagic polyp. Microlaryngoscopic surgery was performed in 108 cases and the main indication of surgery was the presence of vocal fold mass or development of vocal polyp during clinical course. Cold microsurgery was utilized for removal of vocal fold masses and feeding vessels cauterized using low power, pulsed CO(2) laser. Acoustic analysis of patients revealed a significant improvement of jitter, shimmer and harmonics/noise ratio values after treatment. Depending on our clinical findings, we propose treatment algorithm where voice rest and behavioral therapy is the integral part and indications of surgery are individualized for each patient.
Lahaye, J.; Ehrburger, P.; Saint-Romain, J.L.; Couderc, P.
The glass transition characterization of pitches has been studied by differential scanning calorimetry (d.s.c.). Experimental results and theoretical considerations indicate that: (1) the average molecular mass of pitches can be characterized by the apparent activation energy of the relaxation phenomenon of pitch molecules; (2) the molecular polydispersity is correlated with the width of the glass transition. Characterization of pitch by d.s.c. is well adapted to follow pitch transformation during heat treatment. 6 refs., 6 figs., 4 tabs.
Full Text Available Benign lesions of vocal folds are common disorders. Fifty percent of patients who have sound complaints are found to have these lesions after endoscopic and stroboscopic examinations. Benign vocal fold diseases are primarily caused by vibratory trauma. However they may also occur as a result of viral infections and congenital causes. These lesions are often presented with the complaints of dysphonia. [Archives Medical Review Journal 2013; 22(1.000: 86-95
Maria Cláudia Mendes Caminha Muniz
Full Text Available Objective: To present genres and styles currently running on western music scene, focusing on the practice of singing voice. Methods: An observational and documental study for which were selected sound sources presenting musical genres and styles that are part of the experience of the researchers, which were analyzed considering origins, formative elements and vocal features. Alongside we carried out a review of literature grounded in databases research and free review of websites and classical books of the area. Results: The selected styles (Rock and Roll, Heavy Metal, Trash Metal, Grunge, Gothic Metal, Rap, Funk, Blues, R&B – Rhythm and Blues, Soul, Gospel, MPB, Samba, Forro, Sertanejo, Bossa Nova, Opera and Chamber Music were described, pointing the reasons for the speech therapist to be informed about them and about singing voice aspects. His guidance may minimize possible vocal damage caused by each style, since each of them carries its own patterns to which the interpreter must submit. Conclusions: We conclude that the singer will use a specific vocal pattern that resembles the musical style he intends to sing, regardless of any harm it may or may not cause to vocal health. When choosing a musical style, it is important that the singer has the knowledge and understanding of how the use of his vocal apparatus will cause or not cause injury to his voice. Also be aware that the technique in singing is necessary for vocal longevity.
Lennon, Christen J; Murry, Thomas; Sulica, Lucian
Vocal fold hemorrhage is an acute phonotraumatic injury treated with voice rest; recurrence is a generally accepted indication for surgical intervention. This study aims to identify factors predictive of recurrence based on outcomes of a large clinical series. Retrospective cohort. Retrospective review of cases of vocal fold hemorrhage presenting to a university laryngology service. Demographic information was compiled. Videostroboscopic exams were evaluated for hemorrhage extent, presence of varix, mucosal lesion, and/or vocal fold paresis. Vocal fold hemorrhage recurrence was the main outcome measure. Follow-up telephone survey was used to complement clinical data. Forty-seven instances of vocal fold hemorrhage were evaluated (25M:22F; 32 professional voice users). Twelve of the 47 (26%) patients experienced recurrence. Only the presence of varix demonstrated significant association with recurrence (P = 0.0089) on multivariate logistic regression. Vocal fold hemorrhage recurred in approximately 26% of patients. Varix was a predictor of recurrence, with 48% of those with varix experiencing recurrence. Monitoring, behavioral management and/or surgical intervention may be indicated to treat patients with such characteristics. © 2013 The American Laryngological, Rhinological and Otological Society, Inc.
Huang, Chengcheng; Rinzel, John
Pitch is a perceptual correlate of periodicity. Sounds with distinct spectra can elicit the same pitch. Despite the importance of pitch perception, understanding the cellular mechanism of pitch perception is still a major challenge and a mechanistic model of pitch is lacking. A multi-stage neuronal network model is developed for pitch frequency estimation using biophysically-based, high-resolution coincidence detector neurons. The neuronal units respond only to highly coincident input among convergent auditory nerve fibers across frequency channels. Their selectivity for only very fast rising slopes of convergent input enables these slope-detectors to distinguish the most prominent coincidences in multi-peaked input time courses. Pitch can then be estimated from the first-order interspike intervals of the slope-detectors. The regular firing pattern of the slope-detector neurons are similar for sounds sharing the same pitch despite the distinct timbres. The decoded pitch strengths also correlate well with the salience of pitch perception as reported by human listeners. Therefore, our model can serve as a neural representation for pitch. Our model performs successfully in estimating the pitch of missing fundamental complexes and reproducing the pitch variation with respect to the frequency shift of inharmonic complexes. It also accounts for the phase sensitivity of pitch perception in the cases of Schroeder phase, alternating phase and random phase relationships. Moreover, our model can also be applied to stochastic sound stimuli, iterated-ripple-noise, and account for their multiple pitch perceptions.
Bonetti, Leonardo; Costa, Marco
Two studies were conducted on cross-modal matching between pitch and sound source localization on the vertical axis, and pitch and size. In the first study 100 Hz, 200 Hz, 600 Hz, and 800 Hz tones were emitted by a loudspeaker positioned 60 cm above or below to the participant’s ear level. Using...
Duifhuis, H.; Willems, L.F.; Sluyter, R.J.
Recent developments in hearing theory have resulted in the rather general acceptance of the idea that the perception of pitch of complex sounds is the result of the psychological pattern recognition process. The pitch is supposedly mediated by the fundamental of the harmonic spectrum which fits the
Tseng, Wei-En J; Lim, Siew-Na; Chen, Lu-An; Jou, Shuo-Bin; Hsieh, Hsiang-Yao; Cheng, Mei-Yun; Chang, Chun-Wei; Li, Han-Tao; Chiang, Hsing-I; Wu, Tony
Whether the cognitive processing of music and speech relies on shared or distinct neuronal mechanisms remains unclear. Music and language processing in the brain are right and left temporal functions, respectively. We studied patients with musicogenic epilepsy (ME) that was specifically triggered by popular songs to analyze brain hyperexcitability triggered by specific stimuli. The study included two men and one woman (all right-handed, aged 35-55 years). The patients had sound-triggered left temporal ME in response to popular songs with vocals, but not to instrumental, classical, or nonvocal piano solo versions of the same song. Sentimental lyrics, high-pitched singing, specificity/familiarity, and singing in the native language were the most significant triggering factors. We found that recognition of the human voice and analysis of lyrics are important causal factors in left temporal ME and provide observational evidence that sounds with speech structure are predominantly processed in the left temporal lobe. A literature review indicated that language-associated stimuli triggered ME in the left temporal epileptogenic zone at a nearly twofold higher rate compared with the right temporal region. Further research on ME may enhance understanding of the cognitive neuroscience of music. © 2018 New York Academy of Sciences.
Stepanenko, M.A.; Belkina, T.V.; Krysin, V.P.
A method is proposed for producing pitch by mixing hard coal pitch with anthracene fraction and thermal treatment of the mixture. The method is distinguished in that in order to increase the quality of the pitch, the anthracene fraction is subjected to thermal treatment at 250-300/sup 0/ for 10-13 hours in the presence of air. This duration of heat treatment allows one to build up in the anthracene fraction up to 20-24% of material which is not soluble and toluene, without the formation of products which are not soluble in quinoline. The fraction prepared in this manner is inserted into the initial pitch in the ratio 1:2 up to 1:9, the mixture is subject to heat treatment at temperature 360-380/sup 0/ and air consumption 7-91/kgX hours until the production of pitch with softening temperature of 85-90/sup 0/. As the initial raw material we used pitch with softening temperature of 60/sup 0/, content of substances which are not soluble in quinoline, 2.0% which are not soluble and toluene 20.6% and coking residue of 49.2%. Example. 80 grams of anthracene fraction is added to 320 grams of pitch. The anthracene fraction is subjected previously to heat treatment at 300/sup 0/ for 13 hours in the presence of air, supplied in the amount of 9 liters per hour. As a result of the heat treatment of the content of materials which are not soluble in toluence in the anthracene fraction is 24.0%, in quinoline it is 0.1%. The ratio of a pitch and thermally treated anthracene fraction in the mixture was 4:l. The produced mixture was subjected to heat treatment at 360/sup 0/ for 1.5 hours with air supply in the amount of 7 liters/ kilograms/hours. Pitch is produced with the following characteristics: softening temperature 88/sup 0/, content of substances which are not soluble in toluene 32.5%, in quinilone, 6.0%, coking residue, 56.7%. The invention can be used in the chemical coking and petrochemical industry.
Kirke, B.K. [Sustainable Energy Centre, University of South Australia, Mawson Lakes, SA 5095 (Australia); Lazauskas, L. [Cyberiad, 25/65 King William Street, Adelaide, SA 5000 (Australia)
Small Darrieus hydrokinetic turbines with fixed pitch blades typically suffer from poor starting torque, low efficiency and shaking due to large fluctuations in both radial and tangential force with azimuth angle. Efficiency improves as size increases, since adequate blade chord Reynolds numbers can be maintained with low solidity. Shaking can be eliminated by using helical blades, or reduced by using multiple blades. Starting torque can be marginally improved by the use of cambered blade profiles but may still be inadequate to overcome drive train friction for self-starting. Variable pitch can generate high starting torque, high efficiency and reduced shaking but active pitch control systems add considerably to complexity and cost, while passive systems must have effective pitch control to achieve higher efficiency than fixed pitch systems. (author)
Marquezin, Daniela Maria Santos Serrano; Viola, Izabel; Ghirardi, Ana Carolina de Assis Moura; Madureira, Sandra; Ferreira, Léslie Piccolotto
To analyze speech expressiveness in a group of executives based on perceptive and acoustic aspects of vocal dynamics. Four male subjects participated in the research study (S1, S2, S3, and S4). The assessments included the Kingdomality test to obtain the keywords of communicative attitudes; perceptive-auditory assessment to characterize vocal quality and dynamics, performed by three judges who are speech language pathologists; perceptiveauditory assessment to judge the chosen keywords; speech acoustics to assess prosodic elements (Praat software); and a statistical analysis. According to the perceptive-auditory analysis of vocal dynamics, S1, S2, S3, and S4 did not show vocal alterations and all of them were considered with lowered habitual pitch. S1: pointed out as insecure, nonobjective, nonempathetic, and unconvincing with inappropriate use of pauses that are mainly formed by hesitations; inadequate separation of prosodic groups with breaking of syntagmatic constituents. S2: regular use of pauses for respiratory reload, organization of sentences, and emphasis, which is considered secure, little objective, empathetic, and convincing. S3: pointed out as secure, objective, empathetic, and convincing with regular use of pauses for respiratory reload and organization of sentences and hesitations. S4: the most secure, objective, empathetic, and convincing, with proper use of pauses for respiratory reload, planning, and emphasis; prosodic groups agreed with the statement, without separating the syntagmatic constituents. The speech characteristics and communicative attitudes were highlighted in two subjects in a different manner, in such a way that the slow rate of speech and breaks of the prosodic groups transmitted insecurity, little objectivity, and nonpersuasion.
Chang, Joseph; Yung, Katherine C
This case report is the first documentation of dysphonia and vocal fold telangiectasia as a complication of hereditary hemorrhagic telangiectasia (HHT). Case report of a 40-year-old man with HHT presenting with 2 years of worsening hoarseness. Hoarseness corresponded with a period of anticoagulation. Endoscopy revealed vocal fold scarring, vocal fold telangiectasias, and plica ventricular is suggestive of previous submucosal vocal fold hemorrhage and subsequent counterproductive compensation with ventricular phonation. Hereditary hemorrhagic telangiectasia may present as dysphonia with vocal fold telangiectasias and place patients at risk of vocal fold hemorrhage. © The Author(s) 2014.
He, Chao; Hotson, Lisa; Trainor, Laurel J
Previous studies have reported two types of event-related potential (ERP) mismatch responses in infants to infrequent auditory changes: a broad discriminative positivity in younger infants and a negativity resembling adult mismatch negativity (MMN) in older infants. In the present study, we investigated whether the positive discriminative slow wave and the adult-like MMN are functionally distinct by examining how they are affected by presentation rate and magnitude of change. We measured ERPs from adults, 2-month-olds, and 4-month-olds to a repeating piano tone (standard) that occasionally changed in pitch (deviant). The pitch changes between standards and deviants were either small (1/12 octave) or large (1/2 octave) in magnitude, and the stimulus presentation rate was either slow (800 ms SOA) or fast (400 ms SOA). As the presentation rate increased, both adults and 4-month-olds showed an MMN response that decreased in latency, but was unaffected in amplitude. As the magnitude of the pitch change increased, MMN increased in amplitude. On the other hand, only a broad positive mismatch response was seen in 2-month-olds. As the presentation rate increased, 2-month-olds' responses to standard tones decreased in amplitude while their responses to deviant tones were unaffected. The magnitude of the pitch change did not affect 2-month-olds' responses. These results suggest that pitch is processed differently in auditory cortex by 2-month-olds and 4-month-olds, and that a cortical change-detection mechanism for pitch discrimination similar to that of adults emerges between 2 and 4 months of age.
Nielsen, Jannie Jessen; Sørensen, John Dalsgaard
This work concerns a case study in the context of risk-based operation and maintenance of offshore wind turbines. For wind turbines with electrical pitch systems, deterioration can generally be observed at the pitch gear teeth; especially at the point where the blades are located during normal...... of the damage, and can be used for Bayesian updating of a damage model used for risk-based decision making. For this decision problem, the risk of failure should be compared to the cost of preventive maintenance. The hypothesis that the maximum pitch motor torque is an indicator of the damage size is supported...... changes in the temperature are the primary cause of the decrease. A model is established to remove the effect of the explained variation, and it is investigated if deterioration can be detected as changes in the peak torque. A small increase could be detected after the maintenance, but before...
Jensen, Tobias Lindstrøm; Vandenberghe, Lieven
assuming a Nyquist sampled signal by adding an additional semidefinite constraint. We show that the proposed estimator has superior performance compared to state- of-the-art methods for separating two closely spaced fundamentals and approximately achieves the asymptotic Cramér-Rao lower bound.......Multi-pitch estimation concerns the problem of estimating the fundamental frequencies (pitches) and amplitudes/phases of multiple superimposed harmonic signals with application in music, speech, vibration analysis etc. In this paper we formulate a complex-valued multi-pitch estimator via...... a semidefinite programming representation of an atomic decomposition over a continuous dictionary of complex exponentials and extend this to real-valued data via a real semidefinite pro-ram with the same dimensions (i.e. half the size). We further impose a continuous frequency constraint naturally occurring from...
Dalziell, Anastasia H; Welbergen, Justin A; Igic, Branislav; Magrath, Robert D
Mimicry is a classical example of adaptive signal design. Here, we review the current state of research into vocal mimicry in birds. Avian vocal mimicry is a conspicuous and often spectacular form of animal communication, occurring in many distantly related species. However, the proximate and ultimate causes of vocal mimicry are poorly understood. In the first part of this review, we argue that progress has been impeded by conceptual confusion over what constitutes vocal mimicry. We propose a modified version of Vane-Wright's (1980) widely used definition of mimicry. According to our definition, a vocalisation is mimetic if the behaviour of the receiver changes after perceiving the acoustic resemblance between the mimic and the model, and the behavioural change confers a selective advantage on the mimic. Mimicry is therefore specifically a functional concept where the resemblance between heterospecific sounds is a target of selection. It is distinct from other forms of vocal resemblance including those that are the result of chance or common ancestry, and those that have emerged as a by-product of other processes such as ecological convergence and selection for large song-type repertoires. Thus, our definition provides a general and functionally coherent framework for determining what constitutes vocal mimicry, and takes account of the diversity of vocalisations that incorporate heterospecific sounds. In the second part we assess and revise hypotheses for the evolution of avian vocal mimicry in the light of our new definition. Most of the current evidence is anecdotal, but the diverse contexts and acoustic structures of putative vocal mimicry suggest that mimicry has multiple functions across and within species. There is strong experimental evidence that vocal mimicry can be deceptive, and can facilitate parasitic interactions. There is also increasing support for the use of vocal mimicry in predator defence, although the mechanisms are unclear. Less progress has
Riede, Tobias; Titze, Ingo R.
The vocal folds of male Rocky Mountain elk (Cervus elaphus nelsoni) are about 3 cm long. If fundamental frequency were to be predicted by a simple vibrating string formula, as is often done for the human larynx, such long vocal folds would bear enormous stress to produce the species-specific mating call with an average fundamental frequency of 1 kHz. Predictions would be closer to 50 Hz. Vocal fold histology revealed the presence of a large vocal ligament between the vocal fold epithelium and...
Anastasia H Dalziell
Full Text Available Some of the most striking vocalizations in birds are made by males that incorporate vocal mimicry in their sexual displays. Mimetic vocalization in females is largely undescribed, but it is unclear whether this is because of a lack of selection for vocal mimicry in females, or whether the phenomenon has simply been overlooked. These issues are thrown into sharp relief in the superb lyrebird, Menura novaehollandiae, a basal oscine passerine with a lek-like mating system and female uniparental care. The spectacular mimetic song display produced by courting male lyrebirds is a textbook example of a sexually selected trait, but the vocalizations of female lyrebirds are largely unknown. Here, we provide the first analysis of the structure and context of the vocalizations of female lyrebirds. Female lyrebirds were completely silent during courtship; however, females regularly produced sophisticated vocal displays incorporating both lyrebird-specific vocalizations and imitations of sounds within their environment. The structure of female vocalizations varied significantly with context. While foraging, females mostly produced a complex lyrebird-specific song, whereas they gave lyrebird-specific alarm calls most often during nest defense. Within their vocal displays females also included a variety of mimetic vocalizations, including imitations of the calls of dangerous predators, and of alarm calls and song of harmless heterospecifics. Females gave more mimetic vocalizations during nest defense than while foraging, and the types of sounds they imitated varied between these contexts, suggesting that mimetic vocalizations have more than one function. These results are inconsistent with previous portrayals of vocalizations by female lyrebirds as rare, functionless by-products of sexual selection on males. Instead, our results support the hypotheses that complex female vocalizations play a role in nest defense and mediate female-female competition for
Simmons, Andrea; Suggs, Dianne
The advertisement call of male bullfrogs (Rana catesbeiana) consists of a series of individual croaks, each of which contains multiple harmonics with a missing or attenuated fundamental frequency of approximately 100 Hz. The envelope of individual croaks has typically been represented in the literature as smooth and unmodulated. From an analysis of 5251 advertisement calls from 17 different choruses over two mating seasons, we show that males add an extra modulation (around 4 Hz) to the envelope of individual croaks, following specific rules. We term these extra modulations stutters. Neither single croak calls nor the first croak in multiple croak calls contains stutters. When stuttering begins, it does so with a croak containing a single stutter, and the number of stutters increases linearly (plus or minus 1 stutter, up to 4 stutters) with the number of croaks. This pattern is stable across individual males (N=10). Playback experiments reveal that vocal responses to stuttered and nonstuttered calls vary with proximity to the stimulus. Close males respond with nonstuttered calls, while far males respond with stuttered calls. The data suggest that nonstuttered calls are used for aggressive or territorial purposes, while stuttered calls are used to attract females.
King, Ericka F; Blumin, Joel H
Vocal fold paralysis (VFP) is an increasingly commonly identified problem in the pediatric patient. Diagnostic and management techniques honed in adult laryngologic practice have been successfully applied to children. Iatrogenic causes, including cardiothoracic procedures, remain a common cause of unilateral VFP. Neurologic disorders predominate in the cause of bilateral VFP. Diagnosis with electromyography is currently being evaluated in children. Treatment of VFP is centered around symptomology, which is commonly divided between voice and airway concerns. Speech therapy shows promise in older children. Surgical management for unilateral VFP with injection laryngoplasty is commonly performed and well tolerated. Laryngeal reinnervation is currently being applied to the pediatric population as a permanent treatment and offers several advantages over laryngeal framework procedures. For bilateral VFP, tracheotomy is still commonly performed. Glottic dilation procedures are performed both openly and endoscopically with a high degree of success. VFP is a well recognized problem in pediatric patients with disordered voice and breathing. Some patients will spontaneously recover their laryngeal function. For those who do not, a variety of reliable techniques are available for rehabilitative treatment.
The invention relates to a method, system and computer readable code for diagnosis of pitch and/or load defects of e.g. wind turbines as well as wind turbines using said diagnosis method and/or comprising said diagnosis system.......The invention relates to a method, system and computer readable code for diagnosis of pitch and/or load defects of e.g. wind turbines as well as wind turbines using said diagnosis method and/or comprising said diagnosis system....
Norman-Haignere, Sam; Kanwisher, Nancy; McDermott, Josh H
Pitch is a defining perceptual property of many real-world sounds, including music and speech. Classically, theories of pitch perception have differentiated between temporal and spectral cues. These cues are rendered distinct by the frequency resolution of the ear, such that some frequencies produce "resolved" peaks of excitation in the cochlea, whereas others are "unresolved," providing a pitch cue only via their temporal fluctuations. Despite longstanding interest, the neural structures that process pitch, and their relationship to these cues, have remained controversial. Here, using fMRI in humans, we report the following: (1) consistent with previous reports, all subjects exhibited pitch-sensitive cortical regions that responded substantially more to harmonic tones than frequency-matched noise; (2) the response of these regions was mainly driven by spectrally resolved harmonics, although they also exhibited a weak but consistent response to unresolved harmonics relative to noise; (3) the response of pitch-sensitive regions to a parametric manipulation of resolvability tracked psychophysical discrimination thresholds for the same stimuli; and (4) pitch-sensitive regions were localized to specific tonotopic regions of anterior auditory cortex, extending from a low-frequency region of primary auditory cortex into a more anterior and less frequency-selective region of nonprimary auditory cortex. These results demonstrate that cortical pitch responses are located in a stereotyped region of anterior auditory cortex and are predominantly driven by resolved frequency components in a way that mirrors behavior.
Kass, E S; Hillman, R E; Zeitels, S M
Phonomicrosurgery is optimized by maximally preserving the vocal fold's layered microstructure (laminae propriae). The technique of submucosal infusion of saline and epinephrine into the superficial lamina propria (SLP) was examined to delineate how, when, and why it was helpful toward this surgical goal. A retrospective review revealed that the submucosal infusion technique was used to enhance the surgery in 75 of 152 vocal fold procedures that were performed over the last 2 years. The vocal fold epithelium was noted to be adherent to the vocal ligament in 29 of the 75 cases: 19 from previous surgical scarring, 4 from cancer, 3 from sulcus vocalis, 2 from chronic hemorrhage, and 1 from radiotherapy. The submucosal infusion technique was most helpful when the vocal fold epithelium required resection and/or when extensive dissection in the SLP was necessary. The infusion enhanced the surgery by vasoconstriction of the microvasculature in the SLP, which improved visualization during cold-instrument tangential dissection. Improved visualization facilitated maximal preservation of the SLP, which is necessary for optimal pliability of the overlying epithelium. The infusion also improved the placement of incisions at the perimeter of benign, premalignant, and malignant lesions, and thereby helped preserve epithelium uninvolved by the disorder.
Jensen, Jane Bjerg; Rasmussen, Niels
This study reports our experience with microscopic phonosurgery (PS) of benign lesions of the vocal folds.......This study reports our experience with microscopic phonosurgery (PS) of benign lesions of the vocal folds....
Wiegand, Susanne; Teymoortash, Afshin; Hanschmann, Holger
Bilateral vocal fold paralysis can result in shortness of breath and severe dyspnea which can be life-threatening. Thirty-five patients with bilateral vocal fold paralysis who underwent endo-extralaryngeal laterofixation according to Lichtenberger were retrospectively analyzed regarding etiology, symptoms, treatment and complications. In 27 patients, laterofixation of the vocal cord alone was performed. Eight patients underwent laterofixation and additional posterior chordectomy of the opposite vocal cord according to Dennis and Kashima. The time of intervention ranged from 1 day to 38 years after the onset of bilateral vocal cord immobility. The intraoperative course was uneventful in all patients. None of the patients had postoperative aspiration. Postoperative voice function was acceptable in all patients. Complications of suture laterofixation were laryngeal edema, formation of fibrin, and malposition of the suture. Laterofixation of the vocal cords according to Lichtenberger is a safe and easy method that can be used as a first-stage treatment of vocal cord paralysis. Copyright© 2017, International Institute of Anticancer Research (Dr. George J. Delinasios), All rights reserved.
Campbell, Brian M; Stodden, David F; Nixon, Megan K
The purpose of this study was to investigate muscle activation levels of select lower extremity muscles during the pitching motion. Bilateral surface electromyography data on 5 lower extremity muscles (biceps femoris, rectus femoris, gluteus maximus, vastus medialis, and gastrocnemius) were collected on 11 highly skilled baseball pitchers and compared with individual maximal voluntary isometric contraction (MVIC) data. The pitching motion was divided into 4 distinct phases: phase 1, initiation of pitching motion to maximum stride leg knee height; phase 2, maximum stride leg knee height to stride foot contact (SFC); phase 3, SFC to ball release; and phase 4, ball release to 0.5 seconds after ball release (follow-through). Results indicated that trail leg musculature elicited moderate to high activity levels during phases 2 and 3 (38-172% of MVIC). Muscle activity levels of the stride leg were moderate to high during phases 2-4 (23-170% of MVIC). These data indicate a high demand for lower extremity strength and endurance. Specifically, coaches should incorporate unilateral and bilateral lower extremity exercises for strength improvement or maintenance and to facilitate dynamic stabilization of the lower extremities during the pitching motion.
Greenwood, M.S.; Harris, R.V.
The present invention is an ultrasonic fluid densitometer that uses a material wedge and pitch-catch only ultrasonic transducers for transmitting and receiving ultrasonic signals internally reflected within the material wedge. Density of a fluid is determined by immersing the wedge into the fluid and measuring reflection of ultrasound at the wedge-fluid interface. 6 figs.
Pitch and timbre are terms frequently used in studies on sound perception. Despite the existence of formal definitions, these terms are often used ambiguously in the literature. This paper is intended as a review of the ANSI definitions and their shortcomings, of modern ways to define the concepts
Learn about coal-tar products, which can raise your risk of skin cancer, lung cancer, and other types of cancer. Examples of coal-tar products include creosote, coal-tar pitch, and certain preparations used to treat skin conditions such as eczema, psoriasis, and dandruff.
Pitch pine (Pinus rigida Mill.) grows over a wide geographical range - from central Maine to New York and extreme southeastern Ontario, south to Virginia and southern Ohio, and in the mountains to eastern Tennessee, northern Georgia, and western South Carolina. Because it grows mostly on the poorer soils, its distribution is spotty.
More than half of patients presenting with hoarseness show benign vocal fold changes. The clinician should be familiar with the anatomy, physiology and functional aspects of voice disorders and also the modern diagnostic and therapeutic possibilities in order to ensure an optimal and patient specific management. This review article focuses on the diagnostic and therapeutic limitations and difficulties of treatment of benign vocal fold tumors, the management and prevention of scarred vocal folds and the issue of unilateral vocal fold paresis. PMID:24403969
Louzada,Talita; Beraldinelle,Roberta; Berretin-Felix,Giédre; Brasolotto,Alcione Ghedini
The evaluation of oral and vocal fold diadochokinesis (DDK) in individuals with voice disorders may contribute to the understanding of factors that affect the balanced vocal production. Scientific studies that make use of this assessment tool support the knowledge advance of this area, reflecting the development of more appropriate therapeutic planning. Objective: To compare the results of oral and vocal fold DDK in dysphonic women and in women without vocal disorders. Material and methods: F...
This PhD is an investigation of vocal expressions of emotions, mainly focusing on non-verbal sounds such as laughter, cries and sighs. The research examines the roles of categorical and dimensional factors, the contributions of a number of acoustic cues, and the influence of culture. A series of studies established that naive listeners can reliably identify non-verbal vocalisations of positive and negative emotions in forced-choice and rating tasks. Some evidence for underlying dimensions of arousal and valence is found, although each emotion had a discrete expression. The role of acoustic characteristics of the sounds is investigated experimentally and analytically. This work shows that the cues used to identify different emotions vary, although pitch and pitch variation play a central role. The cues used to identify emotions in non-verbal vocalisations differ from the cues used when comprehending speech. An additional set of studies using stimuli consisting of emotional speech demonstrates that these sounds can also be reliably identified, and rely on similar acoustic cues. A series of studies with a pre-literate Namibian tribe shows that non-verbal vocalisations can be recognized across cultures. An fMRI study carried out to investigate the neural processing of non-verbal vocalisations of emotions is presented. The results show activation in pre-motor regions arising from passive listening to non-verbal emotional vocalisations, suggesting neural auditory-motor interactions in the perception of these sounds. In sum, this thesis demonstrates that non-verbal vocalisations of emotions are reliably identifiable tokens of information that belong to discrete categories. These vocalisations are recognisable across vastly different cultures and thus seem to, like facial expressions of emotions, comprise human universals. Listeners rely mainly on pitch and pitch variation to identify emotions in non verbal vocalisations, which differs with the cues used to comprehend
Achey, Meredith A; He, Mike Z; Akst, Lee M
This study sought to assess classical singing students' compliance with vocal hygiene practices identified in the literature and to explore the relationship between self-reported vocal hygiene practice and self-reported singing voice handicap in this population. The primary hypothesis was that increased attention to commonly recommended vocal hygiene practices would correlate with reduced singing voice handicap. This is a cross-sectional, survey-based study. An anonymous survey assessing demographics, attention to 11 common vocal hygiene recommendations in both performance and nonperformance periods, and the Singing Voice Handicap Index 10 (SVHI-10) was distributed to classical singing teachers to be administered to their students at two major schools of music. Of the 215 surveys distributed, 108 were returned (50.2%), of which 4 were incomplete and discarded from analysis. Conservatory students of classical singing reported a moderate degree of vocal handicap (mean SVHI-10, 12; range, 0-29). Singers reported considering all 11 vocal hygiene factors more frequently when preparing for performances than when not preparing for performances. Of these, significant correlations with increased handicap were identified for consideration of stress reduction in nonperformance (P = 0.01) and performance periods (P = 0.02) and with decreased handicap for consideration of singing voice use in performance periods alone (P = 0.02). Conservatory students of classical singing report more assiduous attention to vocal hygiene practices when preparing for performances and report moderate degrees of vocal handicap overall. These students may have elevated risk for dysphonia and voice disorders which is not effectively addressed through common vocal hygiene recommendations alone. Copyright © 2016 The Voice Foundation. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Latham, Katherine; Messing, Barbara; Bidlack, Melissa; Merritt, Samantha; Zhou, Xian; Akst, Lee M
Most agree that education about vocal health and physiology can help singers avoid the development of vocal disorders. However, little is known about how this kind of education is provided to singers as part of their formal training. This study describes the amount of instruction in these topics provided through graduate-level curricula, who provides this instruction, and the kinds of affiliations such graduate singing programs have with medical professionals. This is an online survey of music schools with graduate singing programs. Survey questions addressed demographics of the programs, general attitudes about vocal health instruction for singers, the amount of vocal health instruction provided and by whom it was taught, perceived barriers to including more vocal health instruction, and any affiliations the voice program might have with medical personnel. Eighty-one survey responses were received. Instruction on vocal health was provided in 95% of the schools. In 55% of the schools, none of this instruction was given by a medical professional. Limited time in the curriculum, lack of financial support, and lack of availability of medical professional were the most frequently reported barriers to providing more instruction. When programs offered more hours of instruction, they were more likely to have some of that instruction given by a medical professional (P = 0.008) and to assess the amount of instruction provided positively (P = 0.001). There are several perceived barriers to incorporating vocal health education into graduate singing programs. Opportunity exists for more collaboration between vocal pedagogues and medical professionals in the education of singers about vocal health. Copyright © 2017 The Voice Foundation. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Nakamae, Kazuki; Nishimura, Yuki; Takenaga, Mitsumasa; Nakade, Shota; Sakamoto, Naoaki; Ide, Hiroshi; Sakuma, Tetsushi; Yamamoto, Takashi
The emerging genome editing technology has enabled the creation of gene knock-in cells easily, efficiently, and rapidly, which has dramatically accelerated research in the field of mammalian functional genomics, including in humans. We recently developed a microhomology-mediated end-joining-based gene knock-in method, termed the PITCh system, and presented various examples of its application. Since the PITCh system only requires very short microhomologies (up to 40 bp) and single-guide RNA target sites on the donor vector, the targeting construct can be rapidly prepared compared with the conventional targeting vector for homologous recombination-based knock-in. Here, we established a streamlined pipeline to design and perform PITCh knock-in to further expand the availability of this method by creating web-based design software, PITCh designer ( http://www.mls.sci.hiroshima-u.ac.jp/smg/PITChdesigner/index.html ), as well as presenting an experimental example of versatile gene cassette knock-in. PITCh designer can automatically design not only the appropriate microhomologies but also the primers to construct locus-specific donor vectors for PITCh knock-in. By using our newly established pipeline, a reporter cell line for monitoring endogenous gene expression, and transgenesis (TG) or knock-in/knockout (KIKO) cell line can be produced systematically. Using these new variations of PITCh, an exogenous promoter-driven gene cassette expressing fluorescent protein gene and drug resistance gene can be integrated into a safe harbor or a specific gene locus to create transgenic reporter cells (PITCh-TG) or knockout cells with reporter knock-in (PITCh-KIKO), respectively.
Nakamae, Kazuki; Nishimura, Yuki; Takenaga, Mitsumasa; Sakamoto, Naoaki; Ide, Hiroshi; Sakuma, Tetsushi; Yamamoto, Takashi
ABSTRACT The emerging genome editing technology has enabled the creation of gene knock-in cells easily, efficiently, and rapidly, which has dramatically accelerated research in the field of mammalian functional genomics, including in humans. We recently developed a microhomology-mediated end-joining-based gene knock-in method, termed the PITCh system, and presented various examples of its application. Since the PITCh system only requires very short microhomologies (up to 40 bp) and single-guide RNA target sites on the donor vector, the targeting construct can be rapidly prepared compared with the conventional targeting vector for homologous recombination-based knock-in. Here, we established a streamlined pipeline to design and perform PITCh knock-in to further expand the availability of this method by creating web-based design software, PITCh designer (http://www.mls.sci.hiroshima-u.ac.jp/smg/PITChdesigner/index.html), as well as presenting an experimental example of versatile gene cassette knock-in. PITCh designer can automatically design not only the appropriate microhomologies but also the primers to construct locus-specific donor vectors for PITCh knock-in. By using our newly established pipeline, a reporter cell line for monitoring endogenous gene expression, and transgenesis (TG) or knock-in/knockout (KIKO) cell line can be produced systematically. Using these new variations of PITCh, an exogenous promoter-driven gene cassette expressing fluorescent protein gene and drug resistance gene can be integrated into a safe harbor or a specific gene locus to create transgenic reporter cells (PITCh-TG) or knockout cells with reporter knock-in (PITCh-KIKO), respectively. PMID:28453368
for studying the origins and neural basis of human language. Vocalizations belonging to the same species, or Conspecific Vocalizations (CVs), are...applications including automatic speech recognition , speech enhancement , voice activity detection , hyper-nasality detection , and emotion ...vocalizations. The feature sets chosen have the desirable property of capturing characteristics of the signals that are useful in both identifying and
Villaume, William A.; Brown, Mary Helen
Notes that presbycusis, hearing loss associated with aging, may be marked by a second dimension of hearing loss, a loss in vocalic sensitivity. Reports on the development of the Vocalic Sensitivity Test, which controls for the verbal elements in speech while also allowing for the vocalics to exercise their normal metacommunicative function of…
Rosen, Clark A.; Mau, Ted; Remacle, Marc; Hess, Markus; Eckel, Hans E.; Young, VyVy N.; Hantzakos, Anastasios; Yung, Katherine C.; Dikkers, Frederik G.
The terms used to describe vocal fold motion impairment are confusing and not standardized. This results in a failure to communicate accurately and to major limitations of interpreting research studies involving vocal fold impairment. We propose standard nomenclature for reporting vocal fold
Rosen, Clark A.; Mau, Ted; Remacle, Marc; Hess, Markus; Eckel, Hans E.; Young, VyVy N.; Hantzakos, Anastasios; Yung, Katherine C.; Dikkers, Frederik G.
The terms used to describe vocal fold motion impairment are confusing and not standardized. This results in a failure to communicate accurately and to major limitations of interpreting research studies involving vocal fold impairment. We propose standard nomenclature for reporting vocal fold
Johnson, Kathryn E [Boulder, CO; Fingersh, Lee Jay [Westminster, CO
An adaptive method for adjusting blade pitch angle, and controllers implementing such a method, for achieving higher power coefficients. Average power coefficients are determined for first and second periods of operation for the wind turbine. When the average power coefficient for the second time period is larger than for the first, a pitch increment, which may be generated based on the power coefficients, is added (or the sign is retained) to the nominal pitch angle value for the wind turbine. When the average power coefficient for the second time period is less than for the first, the pitch increment is subtracted (or the sign is changed). A control signal is generated based on the adapted pitch angle value and sent to blade pitch actuators that act to change the pitch angle of the wind turbine to the new or modified pitch angle setting, and this process is iteratively performed.
Full Text Available Background: Vocal fold polyp is one of the most common causes for hoarseness. Many different etiological factors contribute to vocal fold polyp formation. The aim of the study was to find out whether the etiological factors for polyp formation have changed in the last 30 years.Methods: Eighty-one patients with unilateral vocal fold polyp were included in the study. A control group was composed of 50 volunteers without voice problems who matched the patients by age and gender. The data about etiological factors and the findings of phoniatric examination were obtained from the patients' medical documentation and from the questionnaires for the control group. The incidence of etiological factors was compared between the two groups. The program SPSS, Version 18 was used for statistical analysis.Results: The most frequent etiological factors were occupational voice load, GER, allergy and smoking. In 79% of patients 2 – 6 contemporary acting risk factors were found. Occupational voice load (p=0,018 and GER (p=0,004 were significantly more frequent in the patients than in the controls. The other factors did not significantly influence the polyp formation.Conclusions: There are several factors involved simultaneously in the formation of vocal fold polyps both nowadays and 30 years ago. Some of the most common factors remain the same (voice load, smoking, others are new (GER, allergy, which is probably due to the different lifestyle and working conditions than 30 years ago. Occupational voice load and GER were significantly more frequently present in the patients with polyp than in the control group. Regarding the given results it is important to instruct workers with professional vocal load about etiological factors for vocal fold polyp formation.
Zhang, Caicai; Shao, Jing; Huang, Xunan
Congenital amusia is a lifelong disorder of fine-grained pitch processing in music and speech. However, it remains unclear whether amusia is a pitch-specific deficit, or whether it affects frequency/spectral processing more broadly, such as the perception of formant frequency in vowels, apart from pitch. In this study, in order to illuminate the scope of the deficits, we compared the performance of 15 Cantonese-speaking amusics and 15 matched controls on the categorical perception of sound continua in four stimulus contexts: lexical tone, pure tone, vowel, and voice onset time (VOT). Whereas lexical tone, pure tone and vowel continua rely on frequency/spectral processing, the VOT continuum depends on duration/temporal processing. We found that the amusic participants performed similarly to controls in all stimulus contexts in the identification, in terms of the across-category boundary location and boundary width. However, the amusic participants performed systematically worse than controls in discriminating stimuli in those three contexts that depended on frequency/spectral processing (lexical tone, pure tone and vowel), whereas they performed normally when discriminating duration differences (VOT). These findings suggest that the deficit of amusia is probably not pitch specific, but affects frequency/spectral processing more broadly. Furthermore, there appeared to be differences in the impairment of frequency/spectral discrimination in speech and nonspeech contexts. The amusic participants exhibited less benefit in between-category discriminations than controls in speech contexts (lexical tone and vowel), suggesting reduced categorical perception; on the other hand, they performed inferiorly compared to controls across the board regardless of between- and within-category discriminations in nonspeech contexts (pure tone), suggesting impaired general auditory processing. These differences imply that the frequency/spectral-processing deficit might be manifested
Edmir Américo Lourenço
Full Text Available The authors describe a male patient who had malignant lymphoma seven years ago which remitted with chemotherapy.Two years ago he developed dysphonia. An unilateral, pediculate smooth red lesion on the right vocal fold was later discovered. Even without benefit of medicamentosus treatment, the patient refused surgery. In a reevaluation using rigid telescopy of the larynx two years later, the lesion had disappeared, completely and spontaneously. As there are no existing publications on this topic, this case report is an alert that surgery should be recommended with extreme caution in this type of vocal disease.
Grøntved, Ågot Møller; Faber, Christian; Jakobsen, John
INTRODUCTION: Thyroplasty with silicone rubber implantation is a surgical procedure for treatment of patients with vocal fold paralysis. The aim of the present study was to evaluate the outcome of the operation and to monitor which of the analyses were the more beneficial. MATERIAL AND METHODS...... because it offers a quantitative measure of the voice capacity and intensity, which are the major problems experienced by patients with vocal fold paralysis. Used together, these tools are highly instrumental in guiding the patient's choice of surgery or no surgery. Udgivelsesdato: 2009-Jan-12...
Full Text Available To analyze communication we need to study the main parameters that describe the vocal sounds from the point of view of information content transfer efficiency. In this paper we analyze the physical quality of the “on air" information transfer, according to the audio streaming parameters and from the particular phonetic nature of the human factor. Applying this statistical analysis we aim to identify and record the correlation level of the acoustical parameters with the vocal ones and the impact which the presence of this cross-correlation can have on communication structures’ improvement.
Ciochină, Paula; Ciochină, Al D; Burlui, Ada; Zaharia, D
Biofeedback therapy is a learning process that is based on "operant conditioning" techniques. To estimate the significance of biofeedback to an accurate and faster control of singing voice emission. Significantly, it was discovered that professional singers active in performing of both classical and music theatre repertoire with regard to the visual-kinesthetic effect of melodic contour in musical notation as it affect vocal timbre. The results of the study also indicate that the development of new technology for youth singer vocal training, may be useful to these singers.
Full Text Available The principal symptoms of unilateral vocal fold paralysis are hoarseness and difficulty in swallowing. Dyspnea is comparatively rare (Laccourreye et al., 2003. The extent to which unilateral vocal fold paralysis may lead to respiratory problems at all - in contrast to bilateral vocal fold paralysis- has not yet well been determined. On the one hand, inspiration is impaired with unilateral vocal fold paralysis; on the other hand, neither the position of the vocal fold paralysis nor the degree of breathiness correlates with respiratory parameters (Cantarella et al., 2003; 2005. The question of what respiratory stress a patient with a vocal fold paresis can endure has not yet been dealt with.A 43 year-old female patient was suffering from recurrent unspecific respiratory complaints for four months after physical activity. During training for a marathon, she experienced no difficulty in breathing. These unspecific respiratory complaints occurred only after athletic activity and persisted for hours. The patient observed neither an increased coughing nor a stridor. Her voice remained unaltered during the attacks, nor were there any signs of a symptomatic gastroesophageal reflux or infectious disease. A cardio-pulmonary and a radiological examination by means of an X-ray of the thorax also revealed no pathological phenomena. As antiallergic and antiobstructive therapy remained unsuccessful, a laryngological examination was performed in order to exclude a vocal cord dysfunction.Surprisingly enough, the laryngostroboscopy showed, as an initial description, a vocal fold paralysis of the left vocal fold in median position (Figure 1. The anamnestic background for the cause was unclear. The only clue was a thoracotomy on the left side due to a pleuritis in childhood. A subsequent laryngoscopic examination had never been performed. Good mucosa waves and amplitudes were shown bilateral with complete glottal closure. Neither in the acoustic analysis, nor in the
Lima, Stella G C; Sousa-Lima, Renata S; Tokumaru, Rosana S; Nogueira-Filho, Sérgio L G; Nogueira, Selene S C
The evolution of sociality is related to many ecological factors that act on animals as selective forces, thus driving the formation of groups. Group size will depend on the payoffs of group living. The Social Complexity Hypothesis for Communication (SCHC) predicts that increases in group size will be related to increases in the complexity of the communication among individuals. This hypothesis, which was confirmed in some mammal societies, may be useful to trace sociality in the spotted paca (Cuniculus paca), a Neotropical caviomorph rodent reported as solitary. There are, however, sightings of groups in the wild, and farmers easily form groups of spotted paca in captivity. Thus, we aimed to describe the acoustic repertoire of captive spotted paca to test the SCHC and to obtain insights about the sociability of this species. Moreover, we aimed to verify the relationship between group size and acoustic repertoire size of caviomorph rodents, to better understand the evolution of sociality in this taxon. We predicted that spotted paca should display a complex acoustic repertoire, given their social behavior in captivity and group sightings in the wild. We also predicted that in caviomorph species the group size would increase with acoustic repertoire, supporting the SCHC. We performed a Linear Discriminant Analysis (LDA) based on acoustic parameters of the vocalizations recorded. In addition, we applied an independent contrasts approach to investigate sociality in spotted paca following the social complexity hypothesis, independent of phylogeny. Our analysis showed that the spotted paca's acoustic repertoire contains seven vocal types and one mechanical signal. The broad acoustic repertoire of the spotted paca might have evolved given the species' ability to live in groups. The relationship between group size and the size of the acoustic repertoires of caviomorph species was confirmed, providing additional support for the SCHC in yet another group of diverse mammals
Qingfang, Z.; Yansheng, G.; Baohua, H.; Yuzhen, Z. [China Univ. of Petroleum, Dongying, Shandong (China). State Key LAboratory of Heavy Oil Processing, Heavy Oil Research Inst.
Thermosetting resins are widely employed as a basic matrix for c/c composites in carbon materials production. A new type of synthesized thermosetting resin is called pitch resin. Pitch resin is a cheaper resin and possesses a potential opportunity for future use. However, the thermosetting behavior of pitch resin is not very clear. The hardening process and conditions for thermosetting are very important for future use of pitch resin. B-stage pitch resin is a soluble and meltable inter-media condensed polymer, which is not fully reacted and is of a low molecular weight. The insoluble and unmelted pitch resin can only be obtained from synthesized B-stage resin after a hardening stage. This paper presented an experiment that synthesized B-stage pitch resin with a link agent (PXG) under catalyst action from fluid catalytic cracking (FCC) of the slurry's aromatic enriched component (FCCDF). The paper discussed the experiment, including the synthesis of pitch resin and thermosetting of pitch resin. Two kinds of thermosetting procedures were used in the study called one-step thermosetting and two-step thermosetting. It was concluded that the B-stage pitch resin could be hardened after a thermosetting procedure by heat treatment. The thermosetting pitch resin from 2-step thermosetting possesses was found to have better thermal resistant properties than that of the 1-step thermosetting pitch resin. 13 refs., 2 tabs., 6 figs.
Santurette, Sébastien; Dau, Torsten
The ability of eight normal-hearing listeners and fourteen listeners with sensorineural hearing loss to detect and identify pitch contours was measured for binaural-pitch stimuli and salience-matched monaurally detectable pitches. In an effort to determine whether impaired binaural pitch perception was linked to a specific deficit, the auditory profiles of the individual listeners were characterized using measures of loudness perception, cognitive ability, binaural processing, temporal fine structure processing, and frequency selectivity, in addition to common audiometric measures. Two of the listeners were found not to perceive binaural pitch at all, despite a clear detection of monaural pitch. While both binaural and monaural pitches were detectable by all other listeners, identification scores were significantly lower for binaural than for monaural pitch. A total absence of binaural pitch sensation coexisted with a loss of a binaural signal-detection advantage in noise, without implying reduced cognitive function. Auditory filter bandwidths did not correlate with the difference in pitch identification scores between binaural and monaural pitches. However, subjects with impaired binaural pitch perception showed deficits in temporal fine structure processing. Whether the observed deficits stemmed from peripheral or central mechanisms could not be resolved here, but the present findings may be useful for hearing loss characterization.
Full Text Available Background/Aim. An excessive use or misuse of voice by vocal professionals may result in symptoms such are husky voice, hoarse voice, total loss of voice, or even organic changes taking place on vocal folds - minimal pathological lesions - MAPLs. The purpose of this study was to identify the type of MAPLs which affects vocal professionals, as well as to identify the risk factors that bring about these changes. Methods. There were 94 vocal professionals who were examined altogether, out of whom 46 were affected by MAPLs, whereas 48 of them were diagnosed with no MAPLs, so that they served as the control group. All these patients were clinically examined (anamnesis, clinical examination, bacteoriological examination of nose and pharynx, radiography of paranasal cavities, allergological processing, phoniatric examination, endo-video-stroboscopic examination, as well as gastroenterologic examination, and finally endocrinological and pulmological analyses. Results. The changes that occurred most often were identified as nodules (50%; n = 23/46 and polyps (24%; n = 11/46. Risk factors causing MAPLs in vocal professionals were as follows: age, which reduced the risk by 23.9% [OR 0.861 (0.786-0.942] whereas the years of career increase the risk [OR 1.114 (1.000-1.241], as well as the presence of a chronic respiratory disease [OR 7.310 (1.712- 31.218], and the presence of gastro-oesophageal reflux disease [OR 4.542 (1.263-16.334]. The following factors did not contribute to development of MAPLs in vocal professionals: sex, a place of residence, irritation, smoking, endocrinologic disease and the presence of poly-sinusitis. Conclusion. It is necessary to introduce comprehensive procedures for prevention of MAPLs, particularly in high-risk groups. Identification of the risk factors for MAPLs and prevention of their influence on vocal professionals (given that their income depends on their vocal ability is of the highest importance.
Schneider, Berit; Denk, Doris-Maria; Bigenzahn, Wolfgang
A persistent insufficiency of glottal closure is mostly a consequence of a unilateral vocal fold movement impairment. It can also be caused by vocal fold atrophy or scarring processes with regular bilateral respiratory vocal fold function. Because of consequential voice, breathing, and swallowing impairments, a functional surgical treatment is required. The goal of the study was to outline the functional results after medialization thyroplasty with the titanium vocal fold medialization implant according to Friedrich. In the period of 1999 to 2001, an external vocal fold medialization using the titanium implant was performed on 28 patients (12 women and 16 men). The patients were in the age range of 19 to 84 years. Twenty-two patients had a paralysis of the left-side vocal fold, and six patients, of the right-side vocal fold. Detailed functional examinations were executed on all patients before and after the surgery: perceptive voice sound analysis according to the "roughness, breathiness, and hoarseness" method, judgment of the s/z ratio and voice dysfunction index, voice range profile measurements, videostroboscopy, and pulmonary function tests. In case of dysphagia/aspiration, videofluoroscopy of swallowing was also performed. The respective data were statistically analyzed (paired t test, Wilcoxon-test). All patients reported on improvement of voice, swallowing, and breathing functions postoperatively. Videostroboscopy revealed an almost complete glottal closure after surgery in all of the patients. All voice-related parameters showed a significant improvement. An increase of the laryngeal resistance by the medialization procedure could be excluded by analysis of the pulmonary function test. The results confirm the external medialization of the vocal folds as an adequate method in the therapy of voice, swallowing, and breathing impairment attributable to an insufficient glottal closure. The titanium implant offers, apart from good tissue tolerability, the
Guzman, M.; Laukkanen, A. M.; Krupa, P.; Horáček, Jaromír; Švec, J.G.; Geneid, A.
Roč. 27, č. 4 (2013), "523.e19"-"523.e34" ISSN 0892-1997 R&D Projects: GA ČR GAP101/12/1306 Institutional support: RVO:61388998 Keywords : vocal exercises * resonance tube * vocal tract impedance * computerized tomography * singer’s/speaker’s formant cluster Subject RIV: BI - Acoustics Impact factor: 0.944, year: 2013 http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/journal/08921997
Chen, Ao; Peter, Varghese; Wijnen, Frank; Schnack, Hugo; Burnham, Denis
Language experience shapes musical and speech pitch processing. We investigated whether speaking a lexical tone language natively modulates neural processing of pitch in language and music as well as their correlation. We tested tone language (Mandarin Chinese), and non-tone language (Dutch) listeners in a passive oddball paradigm measuring mismatch negativity (MMN) for (i) Chinese lexical tones and (ii) three-note musical melodies with similar pitch contours. For lexical tones, Chinese listeners showed a later MMN peak than the non-tone language listeners, whereas for MMN amplitude there were no significant differences between groups. Dutch participants also showed a late discriminative negativity (LDN). In the music condition two MMNs, corresponding to the two notes that differed between the standard and the deviant were found for both groups, and an LDN were found for both the Dutch and the Chinese listeners. The music MMNs were significantly right lateralized. Importantly, significant correlations were found between the lexical tone and the music MMNs for the Dutch but not the Chinese participants. The results suggest that speaking a tone language natively does not necessarily enhance neural responses to pitch either in language or in music, but that it does change the nature of neural pitch processing: non-tone language speakers appear to perceive lexical tones as musical, whereas for tone language speakers, lexical tones and music may activate different neural networks. Neural resources seem to be assigned differently for the lexical tones and for musical melodies, presumably depending on the presence or absence of long-term phonological memory traces. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Gaskill, Christopher S; Erickson, Molly L
The use of hard-walled narrow tubes, often called resonance tubes, for the purpose of voice therapy and voice training has a historical precedent and some theoretical support, but the mechanism of any potential benefit from the application of this technique is not well understood. Fifteen vocally untrained male participants produced a series of spoken /a/ vowels at a modal pitch and constant loudness, before and after a minute of repeated phonation into a 50-cm hard-walled glass tube at the same pitch and loudness targets. Electroglottography was used to measure the glottal contact quotient (CQ) during each phase of the experiment. Single-subject analysis revealed statistically significant changes in CQ during tube phonation, but with no discernable pattern across the 15 participants. These results indicate that the use of resonance tubes can have a distinct effect on glottal closure, but the mechanism behind this change remains unclear. The implication is that vocal loading techniques such as this need to be studied further with specific attention paid to the underlying mechanism of any measured changes in glottal behavior, and especially to the role of instruction and feedback in the therapeutic and pedagogical application of these techniques. Copyright 2010 The Voice Foundation. Published by Mosby, Inc. All rights reserved.
Mallur, Pavan S.; Rosen, Clark A.
Vocal fold injection is a procedure that has over a 100 year history but was rarely done as short as 20 years ago. A renaissance has occurred with respect to vocal fold injection due to new technologies (visualization and materials) and new injection approaches. Awake, un-sedated vocal fold injection offers many distinct advantages for the treatment of glottal insufficiency (vocal fold paralysis, vocal fold paresis, vocal fold atrophy and vocal fold scar). A review of materials available and ...
High-pitched sung vowels may be considered phonetically "underspecified" because of (i) the tuning of the F 1 to the f 0 accompanying pitch raising and (ii) the wide harmonic spacing of the voice source resulting in the undersampling of the vocal tract transfer function. Therefore, sung vowel intelligibility is expected to decrease as the f 0 increases. Based on the literature of speech perception, it is often suggested that sung vowels are better perceived if uttered in consonantal (CVC) context than in isolation even at high f 0 . The results for singing, however, are contradictory. In the present study, we further investigate this question. We compare vowel identification in sense and nonsense CVC sequences and show that the positive effect of the context disappears if the number of legal choices in a perception test is similar in both conditions, meaning that any positive effect of the CVC context may only stem from the smaller number of possible responses, i.e., from higher probabilities. Additionally, it is also tested whether the training in production (i.e., singing training) may also lead to a perceptual advantage of the singers over nonsingers in the identification of high-pitched sung vowels. The results show no advantage of this kind. Copyright © 2017 The Voice Foundation. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Perlman, Marcus; Dale, Rick; Lupyan, Gary
Studies of gestural communication systems find that they originate from spontaneously created iconic gestures. Yet, we know little about how people create vocal communication systems, and many have suggested that vocalizations do not afford iconicity beyond trivial instances of onomatopoeia. It is unknown whether people can generate vocal communication systems through a process of iconic creation similar to gestural systems. Here, we examine the creation and development of a rudimentary vocal symbol system in a laboratory setting. Pairs of participants generated novel vocalizations for 18 different meanings in an iterative 'vocal' charades communication game. The communicators quickly converged on stable vocalizations, and naive listeners could correctly infer their meanings in subsequent playback experiments. People's ability to guess the meanings of these novel vocalizations was predicted by how close the vocalization was to an iconic 'meaning template' we derived from the production data. These results strongly suggest that the meaningfulness of these vocalizations derived from iconicity. Our findings illuminate a mechanism by which iconicity can ground the creation of vocal symbols, analogous to the function of iconicity in gestural communication systems.
Jessica L Hanson
Full Text Available The laboratory mouse is an emerging model for context-dependent vocal signaling and reception. Mouse ultrasonic vocalizations are robustly produced in social contexts. In adults, male vocalization during courtship has become a model of interest for signal-receiver interactions. These vocalizations can be grouped into syllable types that are consistently produced by different subspecies and strains of mice. Vocalizations are unique to individuals, vary across development, and depend on social housing conditions. The behavioral significance of different syllable types, including the contexts in which different vocalizations are made and the responses listeners have to different types of vocalizations, is not well understood. We examined the effect of female presence and estrous state on male vocalizations by exploring the use of syllable types and the parameters of syllables during courtship. We also explored correlations between vocalizations and other behaviors. These experimental manipulations produced four main findings: 1 vocalizations varied among males, 2 the production of USVs and an increase in the use of a specific syllable type were temporally related to mounting behavior, 3 the frequency (kHz, bandwidth, and duration of syllables produced by males were influenced by the estrous phase of female partners, and 4 syllable types changed when females were removed. These findings show that mouse ultrasonic courtship vocalizations are sensitive to changes in female phase and presence, further demonstrating the context-sensitivity of these calls.
Full Text Available Vocal folds are used as sound sources in various species, but it is unknown how vocal fold morphologies are optimized for different acoustic objectives. Here we identify two main variables affecting range of vocal fold vibration frequency, namely vocal fold elongation and tissue fiber stress. A simple vibrating string model is used to predict fundamental frequency ranges across species of different vocal fold sizes. While average fundamental frequency is predominantly determined by vocal fold length (larynx size, range of fundamental frequency is facilitated by (1 laryngeal muscles that control elongation and by (2 nonlinearity in tissue fiber tension. One adaptation that would increase fundamental frequency range is greater freedom in joint rotation or gliding of two cartilages (thyroid and cricoid, so that vocal fold length change is maximized. Alternatively, tissue layers can develop to bear a disproportionate fiber tension (i.e., a ligament with high density collagen fibers, increasing the fundamental frequency range and thereby vocal versatility. The range of fundamental frequency across species is thus not simply one-dimensional, but can be conceptualized as the dependent variable in a multi-dimensional morphospace. In humans, this could allow for variations that could be clinically important for voice therapy and vocal fold repair. Alternative solutions could also have importance in vocal training for singing and other highly-skilled vocalizations.
Li, Jin-rang; Sun, Jian-jun
To study the diagnosis and treatment of varices of the vocal cord. The clinical data of 21 cases with varix of vocal cord were analyzed. All the patients presented hoarseness. There were 15 female and 6 male cases with their ages ranged from 23 to 68 years (median 44 years old). The varix was found on the right vocal cord in 12 cases, on the left vocal cord in 9 cases. Isolated varix existed on the vocal cord in 10 cases, varix with vocal cord polyps or nodules in 10 cases, varix with vocal cord paralysis in 1 case. All the patients were diagnosed under the laryngovideoscopy. The lesions appeared on the superior surface of the vocal cord. Varices manifested as abnormally dilated capillary running in the anterior to posterior direction in 6 cases, as clusters of capillary in 3 cases, as a dot or small sheet or short line of capillary in 12 cases. The varices were disappeared in 2 of 8 cases with vocal cord varices and polyps after removed the polyps. The varices of others patients had no change after following up for more than 6 months, but one patient happened hemorrhage of the contralateral vocal cord. Varices are most commonly seen in female. Laryngovideoscopy is the key in determining the vocal fold varices. Management of patients with a varix includes medical therapy, speech therapy, and occasionally surgical vaporization.
Demirci, Sule; Tuzuner, Arzu; Callıoglu, Elif Ersoy; Yumusak, Nihat; Arslan, Necmi; Baltacı, Bülent
The aim of this study was to investigate the use of glass ionomer cement (GIC) as an injection material for vocal fold augmentation and to evaluate the biocompatibility of the material. Ten adult New Zealand rabbits were used. Under general anesthesia, 0.1-cc GIC was injected to one vocal fold and the augmentation of vocal fold was observed. No injection was applied to the opposite side, which was accepted as the control group. The animals were sacrificed after 3 months and the laryngeal specimens were histopathologically evaluated. The injected and the noninjected control vocal folds were analyzed. The GIC particles were observed in histological sections on the injected side, and no foreign body giant cells, granulomatous inflammation, necrosis, or marked chronic inflammation were detected around the glass ionomer particles. Mild inflammatory reactions were noticed in only two specimens. The noninjected sides of vocal folds were completely normal. The findings of this study suggest that GIC is biocompatible and may be further investigated as an alternative injection material for augmentation of the vocal fold. Further studies are required to examine the viscoelastic properties of GIC and the long-term effects in experimental studies. NA. © 2015 The American Laryngological, Rhinological and Otological Society, Inc.
Seyfarth, Robert M.; Cheney, Dorothy L.
In this review, we place equal emphasis on production, usage, and comprehension because these components of communication may exhibit different developmental trajectories and be affected by different neural mechanisms. In the animal kingdom generally, learned, flexible vocal production is rare, appearing in only a few orders of birds and few…
Neumann-Werth, Yael; Levy, Erika S; Obler, Loraine K
Vocal emblems, such as shh and brr, are speech sounds that have linguistic and nonlinguistic features; thus, it is unclear how they are processed in the brain. Five adult dextral individuals with left-brain damage and moderate-severe Wernicke's aphasia, five adult dextral individuals with right-brain damage, and five Controls participated in two tasks: (1) matching vocal emblems to photographs ('picture task') and (2) matching vocal emblems to verbal translations ('phrase task'). Cross-group statistical analyses on items on which the Controls performed at ceiling revealed lower accuracy by the group with left-brain damage (than by Controls) on both tasks, and lower accuracy by the group with right-brain damage (than by Controls) on the picture task. Additionally, the group with left-brain damage performed significantly less accurately than the group with right-brain damage on the phrase task only. Findings suggest that comprehension of vocal emblems recruits more left- than right-hemisphere processing.
Full Text Available A shared principle in the evolution of language and the development of speech is the emergence of functional flexibility, the capacity of vocal signals to express a range of emotional states independently of context and biological function. Functional flexibility has recently been demonstrated in the vocalisations of pre-linguistic human infants, which has been contrasted to the functionally fixed vocal behaviour of non-human primates. Here, we revisited the presumed chasm in functional flexibility between human and non-human primate vocal behaviour, with a study on our closest living primate relatives, the bonobo (Pan paniscus. We found that wild bonobos use a specific call type (the “peep” across a range of contexts that cover the full valence range (positive-neutral-negative in much of their daily activities, including feeding, travel, rest, aggression, alarm, nesting and grooming. Peeps were produced in functionally flexible ways in some contexts, but not others. Crucially, calls did not vary acoustically between neutral and positive contexts, suggesting that recipients take pragmatic information into account to make inferences about call meaning. In comparison, peeps during negative contexts were acoustically distinct. Our data suggest that the capacity for functional flexibility has evolutionary roots that predate the evolution of human speech. We interpret this evidence as an example of an evolutionary early transition away from fixed vocal signalling towards functional flexibility.
Fieldwork to study the vocal behaviour of Orange River Francolin Scleroptilia levaillantoides was conducted on a farm in the Heidelberg district, Gauteng province, South Africa, during August 2009 to March 2011. Orange River Francolins possess a basic repertoire of seven calls and one mechanical sound. From 83 ...
de Boer, B.
This paper investigates the effect of larynx position on the articulatory abilities of a humanlike vocal tract. Previous work has investigated models that were built to resemble the anatomy of existing species or fossil ancestors. This has led to conflicting conclusions about the relation between
Hadley, Aaron J; Thompson, Paul; Kolb, Ilya; Hahn, Elizabeth C; Tyler, Dustin J
Paralysis of the structures in the head and neck due to stroke or other neurological disorder often causes dysphagia (difficulty in swallowing). Patients with dysphagia have a significantly higher incidence of aspiration pneumonia and death. The recurrent laryngeal nerve (RLN), which innervates the intrinsic laryngeal muscles that control the vocal folds, travels superiorly in parallel to the trachea in the tracheoesophageal groove. This study tests the hypothesis that functional electrical stimulation (FES) applied via transtracheal electrodes can produce controlled vocal fold adduction. Bipolar electrodes were placed at 15° intervals around the interior mucosal surface of the canine trachea, and current was applied to the tissue while electromyography (EMG) from the intrinsic laryngeal muscles and vocal fold movement visualization via laryngoscopy were recorded. The lowest EMG thresholds were found at an average location of 100° to the left of the ventral midsagittal line and 128° to the right. A rotatable pair of bipolar electrodes spaced 230° apart were able to stimulate bilaterally both RLNs in every subject. Laryngoscopy showed complete glottal closure with transtracheal stimulation in six of the eight subjects, and this closure was maintained under simultaneous FES-induced laryngeal elevation. Transtracheal stimulation is an effective tool for minimally invasive application of FES to induce vocal fold adduction, providing an alternative mechanism to study airway protection.
Full Text Available We propose to use a comprehensive path model of vocal emotion communication, encompassing encoding, transmission, and decoding processes, to empirically model data sets on emotion expression and recognition. The utility of the approach is demonstrated for two data sets from two different cultures and languages, based on corpora of vocal emotion enactment by professional actors and emotion inference by naïve listeners. Lens model equations, hierarchical regression, and multivariate path analysis are used to compare the relative contributions of objectively measured acoustic cues in the enacted expressions and subjective voice cues as perceived by listeners to the variance in emotion inference from vocal expressions for four emotion families (fear, anger, happiness, and sadness. While the results confirm the central role of arousal in vocal emotion communication, the utility of applying an extended path modeling framework is demonstrated by the identification of unique combinations of distal cues and proximal percepts carrying information about specific emotion families, independent of arousal. The statistical models generated show that more sophisticated acoustic parameters need to be developed to explain the distal underpinnings of subjective voice quality percepts that account for much of the variance in emotion inference, in particular voice instability and roughness. The general approach advocated here, as well as the specific results, open up new research strategies for work in psychology (specifically emotion and social perception research and engineering and computer science (specifically research and development in the domain of affective computing, particularly on automatic emotion detection and synthetic emotion expression in avatars.
Full Text Available Hemangioma is one of the most common benign tumorsin the head and neck region. Laryngeal hemangiomasare benign vascular tumors of unknown etiology thatarise from subglottic region with stridor in infants. Thistype also known as congenital laryngeal hemangioma, isthe more common. Congenital hemangiomas occur usuallyin subglottic region and more frequent in girls. Laryngealhemangioma in adults is a very rare conditionand main symptom is hoarseness and breathing difficulties.Adult hemangiomas can be seen in different locationssuch as the epiglottis, aryepiglottic folds, arytenoidsand false and true vocal cords. They are more oftenof cavernous form and cause hoarseness. In this reportwe present an adult patient with hemangioma ofthe left vocal fold and review the literature. Diagnosticinvestigation revealed a pink-purple mass which was extendedfrom the anterior comissure to the posterior partof true vocal cord and false vocal cord, filling the ventriculeand extending to supraglottic region. Directlaryngoscopy was performed, but the lesion was not excisedbecause of its widespread extension in the larynx. JClin Exp Invest 2010; 2(1: 91-94
Weiss, Michael W.; Schellenberg, E. Glenn; Trehub, Sandra E.; Dawber, Emily J.
Music cognition is typically studied with instrumental stimuli. Adults remember melodies better, however, when they are presented in a biologically significant timbre (i.e., the human voice) than in various instrumental timbres (Weiss, Trehub, & Schellenberg, 2012). We examined the impact of vocal timbre on children's processing of melodies.…
Lautenbacher, Stefan; Salinas-Ranneberg, Melissa; Niebuhr, Oliver; Kunz, Miriam
INTRODUCTION AND OBJECTIVES: There have, yet, been only few attempts to phonetically characterize the vocalizations of pain, although there is wide agreement that moaning, groaning, or other nonverbal utterance can be indicative of pain. We studied the production of vowels "u," "a," "i", and "schwa"
Mualem, Orit; Lavidor, Michal
The current study is an interdisciplinary examination of the interplay among music, language, and emotions. It consisted of two experiments designed to investigate the relationship between musical abilities and vocal emotional recognition. In experiment 1 (N = 24), we compared the influence of two short-term intervention programs--music and…
Zendel, Benjamin Rich; Lagrois, Marie-Élaine; Robitaille, Nicolas; Peretz, Isabelle
In normal listeners, the tonal rules of music guide musical expectancy. In a minority of individuals, known as amusics, the processing of tonality is disordered, which results in severe musical deficits. It has been shown that the tonal rules of music are neurally encoded, but not consciously available in amusics. Previous neurophysiological studies have not explicitly controlled the level of attention in tasks where participants ignored the tonal structure of the stimuli. Here, we test whether access to tonal knowledge can be demonstrated in congenital amusia when attention is controlled. Electric brain responses were recorded while asking participants to detect an individually adjusted near-threshold click in a melody. In half the melodies, a note was inserted that violated the tonal rules of music. In a second task, participants were presented with the same melodies but were required to detect the tonal deviation. Both tasks required sustained attention, thus conscious access to the rules of tonality was manipulated. In the click-detection task, the pitch deviants evoked an early right anterior negativity (ERAN) in both groups. In the pitch-detection task, the pitch deviants evoked an ERAN and P600 in controls but not in amusics. These results indicate that pitch regularities are represented in the cortex of amusics, but are not consciously available. Moreover, performing a pitch-judgment task eliminated the ERAN in amusics, suggesting that attending to pitch information interferes with perception of pitch. We propose that an impaired top-down frontotemporal projection is responsible for this disorder. Copyright © 2015 the authors 0270-6474/15/353815-10$15.00/0.
Maria Aparecida Coelho de Arruda Henry
Full Text Available CONTEXT: Gastroesophageal reflux disease is a chronic disease in which gastroduodenal contents reflux into the esophagus. The clinical picture of gastroesophageal reflux disease is usually composed by heartburn and regurgitation (typical manifestations. Atypical manifestations (vocal disturbances and asthma may also be complaint. OBJECTIVE: To analyse the clinical, endoscopic, manometric and pHmetric aspects of patients suffering from gastroesophageal reflux disease associated with vocal disturbances. METHODS: Fifty patients with gastroesophageal reflux disease were studied, including 25 with vocal disturbances (group 1 - G1 and 25 without these symptoms (group 2 - G2. All patients were submitted to endoscopy, manometry and esophageal pHmetry (2 probes. The group 1 patients were submitted to videolaryngoscopy. RESULTS: Endoscopic findings: non-erosive reflux disease was observed in 95% of G1 patients and 88% of G2. Videolaryngoscopy: vocal fold congestion, asymmetry, nodules and polyps were observed in G1 patients. Manometric findings: pressure in the lower esophageal sphincter (mm Hg: 11.6 ± 5.2 in G1 and 14.0 ± 6.2 in G2 (P = 0.14; pressure in the upper esophageal sphincter (mm Hg: 58.4 ± 15.9 in G1 and 69.5 ± 30.7 in the controls. pHmetric findings: De Meester index: 34.0 ± 20.9 in G1 and 15.4 ± 9.4 in G2 (P<0.001; number of reflux episodes in distal probe: 43.0 ± 20.4 in G1 and 26.4 ± 17.2 in G2 (P = 0.003; percentage of time with esophageal pH value lower than 4 units (distal sensor: 9.0% ± 6.4% in G1 and 3.4% ± 2.1% in G2 (P<0.001; number of reflux episodes in proximal probe: 7.5 ± 10.9 in G1 and 5.3 ± 5.7 in G2 (P = 0.38; percentage of time with esophageal pH values lower than 4 units (Proximal probe: 1.2 ± 2.7 in G1 and 0.5 ± 0.7 in G2 (P = 0.21. CONCLUSIONS: 1 The clinical, endoscopic, and manometric findings observed in patients with vocal disturbance do not differ from those without these symptoms; 2 gastroesophageal
Tan, Melin; Pitman, Michael J
We present a patient with a novel finding of bilateral mucosal bridges, bilateral type III trans-vocal fold sulci vocales, and a vocal fold polyp. Although sulci and mucosal bridges occur in the vocal folds, it is rare to find multiples of these lesions in a single patient, and it is even more uncommon when they occur in conjunction with a vocal fold polyp. To our knowledge, this is the first description of a vocal fold polyp in combination with multiple vocal fold bridges and multiple type III sulci vocales in a single patient. To describe and visually present the diagnosis and treatment of a patient with an intracordal polyp, bilateral mucosal bridges, as well as bilateral type III trans-vocal fold sulci vocales. Presentation of a set of high definition intraoperative photos displaying the extent of the vocal fold lesions and the resection of the intracordal polyp. This patient presented with only 6 months of significant dysphonia. It was felt that the recent change in voice was because of the polyp and not the bridges or sulci vocales. Considering the patient's presentation and the possible morbidity of resection of mucosal bridges and sulci, only the polyp was excised. Postoperatively, the patient's voice returned to his acceptable mild baseline dysphonia, and the benefit has persisted 6 months postoperatively. The combination of bilateral mucosal bridges, bilateral type III sulcus vocalis, and an intracordal polyp in one patient is rare if not novel. Treatment of the polyp alone returned the patient's voice to his lifelong baseline of mild dysphonia. Copyright © 2011 The Voice Foundation. Published by Mosby, Inc. All rights reserved.
Chen, Hai-Bo; Zhou, Yan; Yin, Jie; Yan, Jing; Ma, Yuguo; Wang, Lei; Cao, Yong; Wang, Jian; Pei, Jian
A facile synthesis of previously unknown, well-separated, uniform chiral microstructures from achiral pi-conjugated organic molecules was developed by simple solution process. Detailed characterization and formation mechanism were presented. By simple structure modification or temperature change, the pitch of the chiral structure can be fine tuned. Our result opens new possibilities for novel materials in which structure chirality is coupled to device performance.
O'Connor, Jillian J M; Re, Daniel E; Feinberg, David R
Sexual infidelity can be costly to members of both the extra-pair and the paired couple. Thus, detecting infidelity risk is potentially adaptive if it aids in avoiding cuckoldry or loss of parental and relationship investment. Among men, testosterone is inversely related to voice pitch, relationship and offspring investment, and is positively related to the pursuit of short-term relationships, including extra-pair sex. Among women, estrogen is positively related to voice pitch, attractiveness, and the likelihood of extra-pair involvement. Although prior work has demonstrated a positive relationship between men's testosterone levels and infidelity, this study is the first to investigate attributions of infidelity as a function of sexual dimorphism in male and female voices. We found that men attributed high infidelity risk to feminized women's voices, but not significantly more often than did women. Women attributed high infidelity risk to masculinized men's voices at significantly higher rates than did men. These data suggest that voice pitch is used as an indicator of sexual strategy in addition to underlying mate value. The aforementioned attributions may be adaptive if they prevent cuckoldry and/or loss of parental and relationship investment via avoidance of partners who may be more likely to be unfaithful.
Jillian J.M. O'Connor
Full Text Available Sexual infidelity can be costly to members of both the extra-pair and the paired couple. Thus, detecting infidelity risk is potentially adaptive if it aids in avoiding cuckoldry or loss of parental and relationship investment. Among men, testosterone is inversely related to voice pitch, relationship and offspring investment, and is positively related to the pursuit of short-term relationships, including extra-pair sex. Among women, estrogen is positively related to voice pitch, attractiveness, and the likelihood of extra-pair involvement. Although prior work has demonstrated a positive relationship between men's testosterone levels and infidelity, this study is the first to investigate attributions of infidelity as a function of sexual dimorphism in male and female voices. We found that men attributed high infidelity risk to feminized women's voices, but not significantly more often than did women. Women attributed high infidelity risk to masculinized men's voices at significantly higher rates than did men. These data suggest that voice pitch is used as an indicator of sexual strategy in addition to underlying mate value. The aforementioned attributions may be adaptive if they prevent cuckoldry and/or loss of parental and relationship investment via avoidance of partners who may be more likely to be unfaithful.
Full Text Available Mixing suspensions is a very important hydraulic operation. The pitched six-blade turbine is a widely-used axial-flow impeller. This paper deals with effect relative impeller size and particle content on theefficiency of a pitched six-blade turbine at particle suspension. Two pitched six-blade turbines were used in model measurements of just suspension impeller speed. The ratios of the vessel to agitator diameter D/d were 3 and 4.5. The measurements were carried out in a dish-bottomed vessel 300 mm in diameter. The just suspension impeller speeds were measured using an electrochemical method, and were checked visually. A 2.5 % NaCl water solution was used as the liquid phase, and glass particles with four equivalent diameters between 0.18 and 0.89 mmand volumetric concentration from 2.5 % to 40% were usedasthesolid phase. The criterion values πs=Po√Fr'3(d/D7 were calculated from the particle suspension and power consumption measurements. The dependencies of πs on particle content cv show that larger agitators are more efficient for higher particle content.
Tavernini, Davide; Velenis, Efstathios; Longo, Stefano
The distribution of brake forces between front and rear axles of a vehicle is typically specified such that the same level of brake force coefficient is imposed at both front and rear wheels. This condition is known as 'ideal' distribution and it is required to deliver the maximum vehicle deceleration and minimum braking distance. For subcritical braking conditions, the deceleration demand may be delivered by different distributions between front and rear braking forces. In this research we show how to obtain the optimal distribution which minimises the pitch angle of a vehicle and hence enhances driver subjective feel during braking. A vehicle model including suspension geometry features is adopted. The problem of the minimum pitch brake distribution for a varying deceleration level demand is solved by means of a model predictive control (MPC) technique. To address the problem of the undesirable pitch rebound caused by a full-stop of the vehicle, a second controller is designed and implemented independently from the braking distribution in use. An extended Kalman filter is designed for state estimation and implemented in a high fidelity environment together with the MPC strategy. The proposed solution is compared with the reference 'ideal' distribution as well as another previous feed-forward solution.
McKetton, Larissa; Schneider, Keith A.
Absolute pitch (AP) is a rare ability in classifying a musical pitch without a reference standard. It has been of great interest to researchers studying auditory processing and music cognition since it is seldom expressed and sheds light on influences pertaining to neurodevelopmental biological predispositions and the onset of musical training. We investigated the smallest frequency that could be detected or just noticeable difference (JND) between two pitches. Here, we report significant differences in JND thresholds in AP musicians and non-AP musicians compared to non-musician control groups at both 1000 Hz and 987.76 Hz testing frequencies. Although the AP-musicians did better than non-AP musicians, the difference was not significant. In addition, we looked at neuro-anatomical correlates of musicianship and AP using structural MRI. We report increased cortical thickness of the left Heschl's Gyrus (HG) and decreased cortical thickness of the inferior frontal opercular gyrus (IFO) and circular insular sulcus volume (CIS) in AP compared to non-AP musicians and controls. These structures may therefore be optimally enhanced and reduced to form the most efficient network for AP to emerge.
Navalkar, S T; Van Wingerden, J W; Van Kuik, G A M
Individual pitch control (IPC) for reducing blade loads has been investigated and proven successful in recent literature. For IPC, the multi-blade co-ordinate (MBC) transformation is used to process the blade load signals from the rotating to a stationary frame of reference. In the stationary frame of reference, the yaw error of a turbine can be appended to generate IPC actions that are able to achieve turbine yaw control for a turbine in free yaw. In this paper, IPC for yaw control is tested on a high-fidelity numerical model of a commercially produced wind turbine in free yaw. The tests show that yaw control using IPC has the distinct advantage that the yaw system loads and support structure loading are substantially reduced. However, IPC for yaw control also shows a reduction in IPC blade load reduction potential and causes a slight increase in pitch activity. Thus, the key contribution of this paper is the concept demonstration of IPC for yaw control. Further, using IPC for yaw as a tuning parameter, it is shown how the best trade-off between blade loading, pitch activity and support structure loading can be achieved for wind turbine design
A complex tone composed of only higher-order harmonics typically elicits a pitch percept equivalent to the tone's missing fundamental frequency (f0). When judging the direction of residue pitch change between two such tones, however, listeners may have completely opposite perceptual experiences depending on whether they are biased to perceive changes based on the overall spectrum or the missing f0 (harmonic spacing). Individual differences in residue pitch change judgments are reliable and have been associated with musical experience and functional neuroanatomy. Tone languages put greater pitch processing demands on their speakers than non-tone languages, and we investigated whether these lifelong differences in linguistic pitch processing affect listeners' bias for residue pitch. We asked native tone language speakers and native English speakers to perform a pitch judgment task for two tones with missing fundamental frequencies. Given tone pairs with ambiguous pitch changes, listeners were asked to judge the direction of pitch change, where the direction of their response indicated whether they attended to the overall spectrum (exhibiting a spectral bias) or the missing f0 (exhibiting a fundamental bias). We found that tone language speakers are significantly more likely to perceive pitch changes based on the missing f0 than English speakers. These results suggest that tone-language speakers' privileged experience with linguistic pitch fundamentally tunes their basic auditory processing.
Feeley, Brian T; Schisel, Jessica; Agel, Julie
Pitching injuries are getting increased attention in the mass media. Many references are made to pitch counts and the role they play in injury prevention. The original purpose of regulating the pitch count in youth baseball was to reduce injury and fatigue to pitchers. This article reviews the history and development of the pitch count limit in baseball, the effect it has had on injury, and the evidence regarding injury rates on softball windmill pitching. Literature search through PubMed, mass media, and organizational Web sites through June 2015. Pitch count limits and rest recommendations were introduced in 1996 after a survey of 28 orthopedic surgeons and baseball coaches showed injuries to baseball pitchers' arms were believed to be from the number of pitches thrown. Follow-up research led to revised recommendations with more detailed guidelines in 2006. Since that time, data show a relationship between innings pitched and upper extremity injury, but pitch type has not clearly been shown to affect injury rates. Current surveys of coaches and players show that coaches, parents, and athletes often do not adhere to these guidelines. There are no pitch count guidelines currently available in softball. The increase in participation in youth baseball and softball with an emphasis on early sport specialization in youth sports activities suggests that there will continue to be a rise in injury rates to young throwers. The published pitch counts are likely to positively affect injury rates but must be adhered to by athletes, coaches, and parents.
Matheson, Laura E; Sakata, Jon T
Social context affects behavioral displays across a variety of species. For example, social context acutely influences the acoustic and temporal structure of vocal communication signals such as speech and birdsong. Despite the prevalence and importance of such social influences, little is known about the neural mechanisms underlying the social modulation of communication. Catecholamines are implicated in the regulation of social behavior and motor control, but the degree to which catecholamines influence vocal communication signals remains largely unknown. Using a songbird, the Bengalese finch, we examined the extent to which the social context in which song is produced affected immediate early gene expression (EGR-1) in catecholamine-synthesising neurons in the midbrain. Further, we assessed the degree to which administration of amphetamine, which increases catecholamine concentrations in the brain, mimicked the effect of social context on vocal signals. We found that significantly more catecholaminergic neurons in the ventral tegmental area and substantia nigra (but not the central grey, locus coeruleus or subcoeruleus) expressed EGR-1 in birds that were exposed to females and produced courtship song than in birds that produced non-courtship song in isolation. Furthermore, we found that amphetamine administration mimicked the effects of social context and caused many aspects of non-courtship song to resemble courtship song. Specifically, amphetamine increased the stereotypy of syllable structure and sequencing, the repetition of vocal elements and the degree of sequence completions. Taken together, these data highlight the conserved role of catecholamines in vocal communication across species, including songbirds and humans. © 2015 Federation of European Neuroscience Societies and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.
Ongkasuwan, Julina; Devore, Danielle; Hollas, Sarah; Jones, Jeremy; Tran, Brandon
The term vocal fold nodules refers to bilateral thickening of the membranous folds with minimal impairment of the vibratory properties of the mucosa. Nodules are thought to be related to repetitive mechanical stress, associated with voice use patterns. Diagnosis is typically made in the office via either rigid or flexible laryngeal stroboscopy. Depending on the individual child, obtaining an optimal view of the larynx can be difficult if not impossible. Recent advances in high-frequency ultrasonography allows for transcervical examination of laryngeal structures. The goal of this project was to determine if laryngeal ultrasound (LUS) can be used to identify vocal fold nodules in dysphonic children. Prospective case-control study in which the patient acted as his or her own control. Forty-six pediatric patients were recruited for participation in this study; the mean age was 4.8 years. Twenty-three did not have any vocal fold lesions and 23 had a diagnosis of vocal fold nodules on laryngeal stroboscopy. Recorded LUSs were reviewed by two pediatric radiologists who were blinded to the nodule status. There was substantial inter-rater agreement (κ = 0.70, 95% confidence interval [CI]: 0.50-0.89) between the two radiologists regarding the presence of nodules. There was also substantial agreement (κ = 0.87, 95% CI: 0.72-1) between LUS and laryngeal stroboscopy. Sensitivity of LUS was 100% (95% CI: 85%-100%) and specificity was 87% (95% CI: 66%-97%). LUS can be used to identify vocal fold nodules in children with substantial agreement with laryngeal stroboscopy. 3b Laryngoscope, 127:676-678, 2017. © 2016 The American Laryngological, Rhinological and Otological Society, Inc.
Full Text Available Individuals with congenital amusia usually exhibit impairments in melodic contour processing when asked to compare pairs of melodies that may or may not be identical to one another. However, it is unclear whether the impairment observed in contour processing is caused by an impairment of pitch discrimination, or is a consequence of poor pitch memory. To help resolve this ambiguity, we designed a novel Self-paced Audio-visual Contour Task (SACT that evaluates sensitivity to contour while placing minimal burden on memory. In this task, participants control the pace of an auditory contour that is simultaneously accompanied by a visual contour, and they are asked to judge whether the two contours are congruent or incongruent. In Experiment 1, melodic contours varying in pitch were presented with a series of dots that varied in spatial height. Amusics exhibited reduced sensitivity to audio-visual congruency in comparison to control participants. To exclude the possibility that the impairment arises from a general deficit in cross-modal mapping, Experiment 2 examined sensitivity to cross-modal mapping for two other auditory dimensions: timbral brightness and loudness. Amusics and controls were significantly more sensitive to large than small contour changes, and to changes in loudness than changes in timbre. However, there were no group differences in cross-modal mapping, suggesting that individuals with congenital amusia can comprehend spatial representations of acoustic information. Taken together, the findings indicate that pitch contour processing in congenital amusia remains impaired even when pitch memory is relatively unburdened.
Lu, Xuejing; Sun, Yanan; Ho, Hao Tam; Thompson, William Forde
Individuals with congenital amusia usually exhibit impairments in melodic contour processing when asked to compare pairs of melodies that may or may not be identical to one another. However, it is unclear whether the impairment observed in contour processing is caused by an impairment of pitch discrimination, or is a consequence of poor pitch memory. To help resolve this ambiguity, we designed a novel Self-paced Audio-visual Contour Task (SACT) that evaluates sensitivity to contour while placing minimal burden on memory. In this task, participants control the pace of an auditory contour that is simultaneously accompanied by a visual contour, and they are asked to judge whether the two contours are congruent or incongruent. In Experiment 1, melodic contours varying in pitch were presented with a series of dots that varied in spatial height. Amusics exhibited reduced sensitivity to audio-visual congruency in comparison to control participants. To exclude the possibility that the impairment arises from a general deficit in cross-modal mapping, Experiment 2 examined sensitivity to cross-modal mapping for two other auditory dimensions: timbral brightness and loudness. Amusics and controls were significantly more sensitive to large than small contour changes, and to changes in loudness than changes in timbre. However, there were no group differences in cross-modal mapping, suggesting that individuals with congenital amusia can comprehend spatial representations of acoustic information. Taken together, the findings indicate that pitch contour processing in congenital amusia remains impaired even when pitch memory is relatively unburdened.
Wientjens, Wim; Cairns, Douglas
In the fight against discrimination, the IDF launched the first ever International Charter of Rights and Responsibilities of People with Diabetes in 2011: a balance between rights and duties to optimize health and quality of life, to enable as normal a life as possible and to reduce/eliminate the barriers which deny realization of full potential as members of society. It is extremely frustrating to suffer blanket bans and many examples exist, including insurance, driving licenses, getting a job, keeping a job and family affairs. In this article, an example is given of how pilots with insulin treated diabetes are allowed to fly by taking the responsibility of using special blood glucose monitoring protocols. At this time the systems in the countries allowing flying for pilots with insulin treated diabetes are applauded, particularly the USA for private flying, and Canada for commercial flying. Encouraging developments may be underway in the UK for commercial flying and, if this materializes, could be used as an example for other aviation authorities to help adopt similar protocols. However, new restrictions implemented by the new European Aviation Authority take existing privileges away for National Private Pilot Licence holders with insulin treated diabetes in the UK. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.
Full Text Available The effect of hand proximity on vision and visual attention has been well documented. In this study we tested whether such effect(s would also be present in the auditory modality. With hands placed either near or away from the audio sources, participants performed an auditory-spatial discrimination (Exp 1: left or right side, pitch discrimination (Exp 2: high, med, or low tone, and spatial-plus-pitch (Exp 3: left or right; high, med, or low discrimination task. In Exp 1, when hands were away from the audio source, participants consistently responded faster with their right hand regardless of stimulus location. This right hand advantage, however, disappeared in the hands-near condition because of a significant improvement in left hand’s reaction time. No effect of hand proximity was found in Exp 2 or 3, where a choice reaction time task requiring pitch discrimination was used. Together, these results suggest that the effect of hand proximity is not exclusive to vision alone, but is also present in audition, though in a much weaker form. Most important, these findings provide evidence from auditory attention that supports the multimodal account originally raised by Reed et al. in 2006.
Linn, Sabrina N; Boeer, Michael; Scheumann, Marina
Describing vocal repertoires represents an essential step towards gaining an overview about the complexity of acoustic communication in a given species. The analysis of infant vocalisations is essential for understanding the development and usage of species-specific vocalisations, but is often underrepresented, especially in species with long inter-birth intervals such as the white rhinoceros. Thus, this study aimed for the first time to characterise the infant and juvenile vocal repertoire of the Southern white rhinoceros and to relate these findings to the adult vocal repertoire. The behaviour of seven mother-reared white rhinoceros calves (two males, five females) and one hand-reared calf (male), ranging from one month to four years, was simultaneously audio and video-taped at three zoos. Normally reared infants and juveniles uttered four discriminable call types (Whine, Snort, Threat, and Pant) that were produced in different behavioural contexts. All call types were also uttered by the hand-reared calf. Call rates of Whines, but not of the other call types, decreased with age. These findings provide the first evidence that infant and juvenile rhinoceros utter specific call types in distinct contexts, even if they grow up with limited social interaction with conspecifics. By comparing our findings with the current literature on vocalisations of adult white rhinoceros and other solitary rhinoceros species, we discuss to which extent differences in the social lifestyle across species affect acoustic communication in mammals.
Penna, Mario; Moreno-Gómez, Felipe N; Muñoz, Matías I; Cisternas, Javiera
Degradation phenomena affecting animal acoustic signals may provide cues to assess the distance of emitters. Recognition of degraded signals has been extensively demonstrated in birds, and recently studies have also reported detection of degraded patterns in anurans that call at or above ground level. In the current study we explore the vocal responses of the syntopic burrowing male frogs Eupsophus emiliopugini and E. calcaratus from the South American temperate forest to synthetic conspecific calls differing in amplitude and emulating degraded and non-degraded signal patterns. The results show a strong dependence of vocal responses on signal amplitude, and a general lack of differential responses to signals with different pulse amplitude modulation depths in E. emiliopugini and no effect of relative amplitude of harmonics in E. calcaratus. Such limited discrimination of signal degradation patterns from non-degraded signals is likely related to the burrowing habits of these species. Shelters amplify outgoing and incoming conspecific vocalizations, but do not counteract signal degradation to an extent comparable to calling strategies used by other frogs. The limited detection abilities and resultant response permissiveness to degraded calls in these syntopic burrowing species would be advantageous for animals communicating in circumstances in which signal alteration prevails. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Boeer, Michael; Scheumann, Marina
Describing vocal repertoires represents an essential step towards gaining an overview about the complexity of acoustic communication in a given species. The analysis of infant vocalisations is essential for understanding the development and usage of species-specific vocalisations, but is often underrepresented, especially in species with long inter-birth intervals such as the white rhinoceros. Thus, this study aimed for the first time to characterise the infant and juvenile vocal repertoire of the Southern white rhinoceros and to relate these findings to the adult vocal repertoire. The behaviour of seven mother-reared white rhinoceros calves (two males, five females) and one hand-reared calf (male), ranging from one month to four years, was simultaneously audio and video-taped at three zoos. Normally reared infants and juveniles uttered four discriminable call types (Whine, Snort, Threat, and Pant) that were produced in different behavioural contexts. All call types were also uttered by the hand-reared calf. Call rates of Whines, but not of the other call types, decreased with age. These findings provide the first evidence that infant and juvenile rhinoceros utter specific call types in distinct contexts, even if they grow up with limited social interaction with conspecifics. By comparing our findings with the current literature on vocalisations of adult white rhinoceros and other solitary rhinoceros species, we discuss to which extent differences in the social lifestyle across species affect acoustic communication in mammals. PMID:29513670
Jenny Alejandra Gutiérrez Calderón
Full Text Available This paper explores the most important techniques currently used to detect sub-vocal speech in people with cerebral palsy as well as for commercial purposes, (e.g. allow communication in very noisy places. The methodologies presented deal with speech-signal acquisition and processing. Signal detection and analysis methods are described throughout the whole speech process, from signal generation (as neural impulses in the brain to the production sound in the vocal apparatus (located in the throat. Acquisition and processing quality depends on several factors that will be presented in various sections. A brief explanation to the whole voice generation process is provided in the first part of the article. Subsequently, sub-speech signal acquisition and analysis techniques are presented. Finally, a section about the advantages and disadvantages of the various techniques is presented in order to illustrate different implementations in a sub-vocal speech or silent speech detection device. The results from research indicate that Non-audible Murmur Microphone (NAM is one of the choices that offer huge benefits, not only for signal acquisition and processing, but also for future Spanish language phoneme discrimination.
Cheng, Chia-Hsiung; Baillet, Sylvain; Hsiao, Fu-Jung; Lin, Yung-Yang
Although aging-related alterations in the auditory sensory memory and involuntary change discrimination have been widely studied, it remains controversial whether the mismatch negativity (MMN) or its magnetic counterpart (MMNm) is modulated by physiological aging. This study aimed to examine the effects of aging on mismatch activity to pitch deviants by using a whole-head magnetoencephalography (MEG) together with distributed source modeling analysis. The neuromagnetic responses to oddball paradigms consisting of standards (1000 Hz, p=0.85) and deviants (1100 Hz, p=0.15) were recorded in healthy young (n=20) and aged (n=18) male adults. We used minimum norm estimate of source reconstruction to characterize the spatiotemporal neural dynamics of MMNm responses. Distributed activations to MMNm were identified in the bilateral fronto-temporo-parietal areas. Compared to younger participants, the elderly exhibited a significant reduction of cortical activation in bilateral superior temporal guri, superior temporal sulci, inferior fontal gyri, orbitofrontal cortices and right inferior parietal lobules. In conclusion, our results suggest an aging-related decline in auditory sensory memory and automatic change detection as indexed by MMNm. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.
Olsen, Tore Vincents
The purpose of this report is to describe and analyse Danish anti-discrimination legislation and the debate about discrimination in Denmark in order to identify present and future legal challenges. The main focus is the implementation of the EU anti-discrimination directives in Danish law...
Pinheiro, Ana P; Barros, Carla; Vasconcelos, Margarida; Obermeier, Christian; Kotz, Sonja A
The capacity to predict what should happen next and to minimize any discrepancy between an expected and an actual sensory input (prediction error) is a central aspect of perception. Particularly in vocal communication, the effective prediction of an auditory input that informs the listener about the emotionality of a speaker is critical. What is currently unknown is how the perceived valence of an emotional vocalization affects the capacity to predict and detect a change in the auditory input. This question was probed in a combined event-related potential (ERP) and time-frequency analysis approach. Specifically, we examined the brain response to standards (Repetition Positivity) and to deviants (Mismatch Negativity - MMN), as well as the anticipatory response to the vocal sounds (pre-stimulus beta oscillatory power). Short neutral, happy (laughter), and angry (growls) vocalizations were presented both as standard and deviant stimuli in a passive oddball listening task while participants watched a silent movie and were instructed to ignore the vocalizations. MMN amplitude was increased for happy compared to neutral and angry vocalizations. The Repetition Positivity was enhanced for happy standard vocalizations. Induced pre-stimulus upper beta power was increased for happy vocalizations, and predicted the modulation of the standard Repetition Positivity. These findings indicate enhanced sensory prediction for positive vocalizations such as laughter. Together, the results suggest that positive vocalizations are more effective predictors in social communication than angry and neutral ones, possibly due to their high social significance. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
D'haeseleer, E; Claeys, S; Wuyts, F; Van Lierde, K M
The main purpose of this study was to determine the vocal quality of 20 male and 9 female university teachers using a multi-parameter approach. Secondly, the effect of an academic lecture on the voice profiles of the university teachers was measured. All groups underwent subjective voice evaluations (perceptual evaluation, Voice Handicap Index, anamnesis of vocal complaints and vocal abuse) and objective voice evaluations (aerodynamic and acoustic parameters, vocal performance, and the Dysphonia Severity Index). The same voice assessment was performed after an academic lecture with a mean length of one and a half hours. The mean DSI score was + 2.2 for the male teachers and + 4.0 for the female teachers. The mean VHI score was 13. Perceptually, all voice parameters were rated as normal. The questionnaire revealed a relatively high amount of vocal abuse. No changes in the objective vocal parameters were found after the lecture. Perceptually, however, the voices of the university teachers were significantly less instable after the lecture. Although no negative changes in objective vocal quality were observed, 48% of the university teachers experienced subjective vocal changes. The authors concluded that university teachers are professional voice users with good vocal quality who suffer no handicapping effect from possible voice disorders. No important changes in the vocal profile after a teaching activity of one and a half hours were found, despite the high prevalence of voice complaints.
Harris, G; O'Meara, C; Pemberton, C; Rough, J; Darveniza, P; Tisch, S; Cole, I
To review the clinical signs of vocal fold paresis on laryngeal videostroboscopy, to quantify its impact on patients' quality of life and to confirm the benefit of laryngeal electromyography in its diagnosis. Twenty-nine vocal fold paresis patients were referred for laryngeal electromyography. Voice Handicap Index 10 results were compared to 43 patients diagnosed with vocal fold paralysis. Laryngeal videostroboscopy analysis was conducted to determine side of paresis. Blinded laryngeal electromyography confirmed vocal fold paresis in 92.6 per cent of cases, with vocal fold lag being the most common diagnostic sign. The laryngology team accurately predicted side of paresis in 76 per cent of cases. Total Voice Handicap Index 10 responses were not significantly different between vocal fold paralysis and vocal fold paresis groups (26.08 ± 0.21 and 22.93 ± 0.17, respectively). Vocal fold paresis has a significant impact on quality of life. This study shows that laryngeal electromyography is an important diagnostic tool. Patients with persisting dysphonia and apparently normal vocal fold movement, who fail to respond to appropriate speech therapy, should be investigated for a diagnosis of vocal fold paresis.
Chang, Wei-Han; Fang, Tuan-Jen; Li, Hsueh-Yu; Jaw, Fu-Shan; Wong, Alice M K; Pei, Yu-Cheng
Unilateral vocal fold paralysis with no preceding causes is diagnosed as idiopathic unilateral vocal fold paralysis. However, comprehensive guidelines for evaluating the defining characteristics of idiopathic unilateral vocal fold paralysis are still lacking. In the present study, we hypothesized that idiopathic unilateral vocal fold paralysis may have different clinical and neurologic characteristics from unilateral vocal fold paralysis caused by surgical trauma. Retrospective, case series study. Patients with unilateral vocal fold paralysis were evaluated using quantitative laryngeal electromyography, videolaryngostroboscopy, voice acoustic analysis, the Voice Outcome Survey, and the Short Form-36 Health Survey quality-of-life questionnaire. Patients with idiopathic and iatrogenic vocal fold paralysis were compared. A total of 124 patients were recruited. Of those, 17 with no definite identified causes after evaluation and follow-up were assigned to the idiopathic group. The remaining 107 patients with surgery-induced vocal fold paralysis were assigned to the iatrogenic group. Patients in the idiopathic group had higher recruitment of the thyroarytenoid-lateral cricoarytenoid muscle complex and better quality of life compared with the iatrogenic group. Idiopathic unilateral vocal fold paralysis has a distinct clinical presentation, with relatively minor denervation changes in the involved laryngeal muscles, and less impact on quality of life compared with iatrogenic vocal fold paralysis. 4. Laryngoscope, 126:E362-E368, 2016. © 2016 The American Laryngological, Rhinological and Otological Society, Inc.
Tsuji, Domingos Hiroshi; Hachiya, Adriana; Dajer, Maria Eugenia; Ishikawa, Camila Cristina; Takahashi, Marystella Tomoe; Montagnoli, Arlindo Neto
Introduction The study of the dynamic properties of vocal fold vibration is important for understanding the vocal production mechanism and the impact of organic and functional changes. The advent of high-speed videolaryngoscopy (HSV) has provided the possibility of seeing the real cycle of vocal fold vibration in detail through high sampling rate of successive frames and adequate spatial resolution. Objective To describe the technique, advantages, and limitations of using HSV and digital videokymography in the diagnosis of vocal pathologies. Methods We used HSV and digital videokymography to evaluate one normophonic individual and four patients with vocal fold pathologies (nodules, unilateral paralysis of the left vocal fold, intracordal cyst, and adductor spasmodic dysphonia). The vocal fold vibration parameters (glottic closure, vibrational symmetry, periodicity, mucosal wave, amplitude, and glottal cycle phases) were assessed. Results Differences in the vocal vibration parameters were observed and correlated with the pathophysiology. Conclusion HSV is the latest diagnostic tool in visual examination of vocal behavior and has considerable potential to refine our knowledge regarding the vocal fold vibration and voice production, as well as regarding the impact of pathologic conditions have on the mechanism of phonation. PMID:25992109
Tsuji, Domingos Hiroshi
Full Text Available Introduction The study of the dynamic properties of vocal fold vibration is important for understanding the vocal production mechanism and the impact of organic and functional changes. The advent of high-speed videolaryngoscopy (HSV has provided the possibility of seeing the real cycle of vocal fold vibration in detail through high sampling rate of successive frames and adequate spatial resolution. Objective To describe the technique, advantages, and limitations of using HSV and digital videokymography in the diagnosis of vocal pathologies. Methods We used HSV and digital videokymography to evaluate one normophonic individual and four patients with vocal fold pathologies (nodules, unilateral paralysis of the left vocal fold, intracordal cyst, and adductor spasmodic dysphonia. The vocal fold vibration parameters (glottic closure, vibrational symmetry, periodicity, mucosal wave, amplitude, and glottal cycle phases were assessed. Results Differences in the vocal vibration parameters were observed and correlated with the pathophysiology. Conclusion HSV is the latest diagnostic tool in visual examination of vocal behavior and has considerable potential to refine our knowledge regarding the vocal fold vibration and voice production, as well as regarding the impact of pathologic conditions have on the mechanism of phonation.
Estudo do comportamento vocal no ciclo menstrual: avaliação perceptivo-auditiva, acústica e auto-perceptiva Vocal behavior during menstrual cycle: perceptual-auditory, acoustic and self-perception analysis
Luciane C. de Figueiredo
Full Text Available Durante o período pré-menstrual é comum a ocorrência de disfonia, e são poucas as mulheres que se dão conta dessa variação da voz dentro do ciclo menstrual (Quinteiro, 1989. OBJETIVO: Verificar se há diferença no padrão vocal de mulheres no período de ovulação em relação ao primeiro dia do ciclo menstrual, utilizando-se da análise perceptivo-auditiva, da espectrografia, dos parâmetros acústicos e quando esta diferença está presente, se é percebida pelas mulheres. FORMA DE ESTUDO: Caso-controle. MATERIAL E MÉTODO: A amostra coletada foi de 30 estudantes de Fonoaudiologia, na faixa etária de 18 a 25 anos, não-fumantes, com ciclo menstrual regular e sem o uso de contraceptivo oral. As vozes foram gravadas no primeiro dia de menstruação e no décimo-terceiro dia pós-menstruação (ovulação, para posterior comparação. RESULTADOS: Observou-se durante o período menstrual que as vozes estão rouco-soprosa de grau leve a moderado, instáveis, sem a presença de quebra de sonoridade, com pitch e loudness adequados e ressonância equilibrada. Há pior qualidade de definição dos harmônicos, maior quantidade de ruído entre eles e menor extensão dos harmônicos superiores. Encontramos uma f0 mais aguda, jitter e shimmer aumentados e PHR diminuída. CONCLUSÃO: No período menstrual há mudanças na qualidade vocal, no comportamento dos harmônicos e nos parâmetros vocais (f0,jitter, shimmer e PHR. Além disso, a maioria das estudantes de Fonoaudiologia não percebeu a variação da voz durante o ciclo menstrual.During the premenstruation period dysphonia often can be observed and only few women are aware of this voice variation (Quinteiro, 1989. AIM: To verify if there are vocal quality variations between the ovulation period and the first day of the menstrual cycle, by using perceptual-auditory and acoustic analysis, including spectrography, and the self perception of the vocal changes when it occurs. STUDY DESIGN: Case
Miller, Cory T; Thomas, A Wren; Nummela, Samuel U; de la Mothe, Lisa A
The role of primate frontal cortex in vocal communication and its significance in language evolution have a controversial history. While evidence indicates that vocalization processing occurs in ventrolateral prefrontal cortex neurons, vocal-motor activity has been conjectured to be primarily subcortical and suggestive of a distinctly different neural architecture from humans. Direct evidence of neural activity during natural vocal communication is limited, as previous studies were performed in chair-restrained animals. Here we recorded the activity of single neurons across multiple regions of prefrontal and premotor cortex while freely moving marmosets engaged in a natural vocal behavior known as antiphonal calling. Our aim was to test whether neurons in marmoset frontal cortex exhibited responses during vocal-signal processing and/or vocal-motor production in the context of active, natural communication. We observed motor-related changes in single neuron activity during vocal production, but relatively weak sensory responses for vocalization processing during this natural behavior. Vocal-motor responses occurred both prior to and during call production and were typically coupled to the timing of each vocalization pulse. Despite the relatively weak sensory responses a population classifier was able to distinguish between neural activity that occurred during presentations of vocalization stimuli that elicited an antiphonal response and those that did not. These findings are suggestive of the role that nonhuman primate frontal cortex neurons play in natural communication and provide an important foundation for more explicit tests of the functional contributions of these neocortical areas during vocal behaviors. Copyright © 2015 the American Physiological Society.
Full Text Available The simplest and likeliest assumption concerning the cognitive bases of absolute pitch (AP is that at its origin there is a particularly skilled function which matches the height of the perceived pitch to the verbal label of the musical tone. Since there is no difference in sound frequency resolution between AP and non-AP (NAP musicians, the hypothesis of the present study is that the failure of NAP musicians in pitch identification relies mainly in an inability to retrieve the correct verbal label to be assigned to the perceived musical note. The primary hypothesis is that, when asked to identify tones, NAP musicians confuse the verbal labels to be attached to the stimulus on the basis of their phonetic content. Data from two AP tests are reported, in which subjects had to respond in the presence or in the absence of visually presented verbal note labels (fixed Do solmization. Results show that NAP musicians confuse more frequently notes having a similar vowel in the note label. They tend to confuse e.g. a 261 Hz tone (Do more often with Sol than, e.g., with La. As a second goal, we wondered whether this effect is lateralized, i.e. whether one hemisphere is more responsible than the other in the confusion of notes with similar labels. This question was addressed by observing pitch identification during dichotic listening. Results showed that there is a right hemispheric disadvantage, in NAP but not AP musicians, in the retrieval of the verbal label to be assigned to the perceived pitch. The present results indicate that absolute pitch has strong verbal bases, at least from a cognitive point of view.
Ueda, S; Asoh, S; Watanabe, Y
Pitch match and loudness balance tests were given to 397 cases with tinnitus. The factors which influenced tinnitus pitch and loudness were analyzed statistically from the clinical point of view. The results obtained were as follows: 1) Onomatopoeia of tinnitus, either [Keeeen] or [Jeeeen], were observed in a majority of cases. 2) Significantly sharp sounding onomatopoeia such as [Keeeen] or [Meeeen] had high pitches, over 4kHz, and dull sounds like [Gooooh] or [Buuuun] had low pitches, below 500Hz. 3) Acute stage tinnitus, within one month of onset, had a significantly depressed pitch and walked loudness, above 6dB. 4) The pitches observed in cases with Meniere's disease and chronic otitis media were distributed evenly from low frequencies to high. In other cases, especially presbyacusis and noise deafness, high pitch tinnitus (above 4kHz) was frequently noted. The loudness of tinnitus without hearing loss was significantly greater than in other diseases. 5) As a rule the more deteriorated the hearing level was, the lower the frequency of the pitch, and the smaller the loudness in tinnitus. 6) A high pitch of tinnitus nearly corresponded with hearing type, that is, the pitch of tinnitus was also in accordance with the disturbed frequency in the hearing threshold.
Full Text Available OBJETIVO: avaliar a desvantagem vocal de cantores amadores de coros de igreja. MÉTODO: participaram 42 cantores de coros amadores de igrejas, sendo 20 homens e 22 mulheres, com idades entre 18 e 59 anos. Todos responderam a um questionário contendo perguntas sobre autopercepção vocal e práticas de canto, e ao protocolo Índice de Desvantagem para o Canto Moderno (IDCM, composto por 30 questões referentes às subescalas incapacidade, desvantagem e defeito. Foi realizada triagem perceptivo-auditiva para classificação das vozes em adaptadas ou alteradas e mensuração dos graus De alteração. RESULTADOS: a pontuação total média obtida no IDCM foi 23 pontos. Os maiores escores foram obtidos na subescala "defeito" (10,9, seguido por "incapacidade" (7,6 e "desvantagem" (4,5, com diferença entre elas (p= 0,001. Cantores que nunca realizaram aula de canto apresentaram maiores escores no domínio "desvantagem" (p=0,003. À medida que o escore total do IDCM aumentou, a nota atribuída pelo cantor em relação à própria voz diminuiu (p= 0,046. Participantes com qualidade vocal alterada apresentaram maiores escores nas subescalas incapacidade e desvantagem e no domínio total do IDCM quando comparados aos que apresentavam qualidade vocal adaptada (p=0,012, p=0,049 e p=0,015, respectivamente. Além disso, quanto maior o grau de alteração vocal, maiores foram os escores referentes à subescala incapacidade (p=0,022. CONCLUSÃO: cantores de igreja apresentam desvantagem vocal importante. Quando apresentam alterações vocais, esta desvantagem é ainda maior. Quanto maior o grau de alteração vocal, maiores as limitações referentes à voz cantada. Aulas de canto parecem minimizar a desvantagem vocal nessa população.PURPOSE: to evaluate the vocal handicap of amateur singers of church choirs. METHOD: we interviewed 42 amateur singers from church choirs, 20 men, and 22 women, between 18 and 59 year old. Everybody answered a questionnaire
Cates, Daniel J; Venkatesan, Naren N; Strong, Brandon; Kuhn, Maggie A; Belafsky, Peter C
The effect of vocal fold medialization (VFM) on vocal improvement in persons with unilateral vocal fold immobility (UVFI) is well established. The effect of VFM on the symptom of dysphagia is uncertain. The purpose of this study is to evaluate dysphagia symptoms in patients with UVFI pre- and post-VFM. Case series with chart review. Academic tertiary care medical center. The charts of 44 persons with UVFI who underwent VFM between June 1, 2013, and December 31, 2014, were abstracted from a prospectively maintained database at the University of California, Davis, Voice and Swallowing Center. Patient demographics, indications, and type of surgical procedure were recorded. Self-reported swallowing impairment was assessed with the validated 10-item Eating Assessment Tool (EAT-10) before and after surgery. A paired samples t test was used to compare pre- and postmedialization EAT-10 scores. Forty-four patients met criteria and underwent either vocal fold injection (73%) or thyroplasty (27%). Etiologies of vocal fold paralysis were iatrogenic (55%), idiopathic (29%), benign or malignant neoplastic (9%), traumatic (5%), or related to the late effects of radiation (2%). EAT-10 (mean ± SD) scores improved from 12.2 ± 11.1 to 7.7 ± 7.2 after medialization (P dysphagia and report significant improvement in swallowing symptoms following VFM. The symptomatic improvement appears to be durable over time. © American Academy of Otolaryngology—Head and Neck Surgery Foundation 2016.
Howard, David M
The advent and now increasingly widespread availability of 3-D printers is transforming our understanding of the natural world by enabling observations to be made in a tangible manner. This paper describes the use of 3-D printed models of the vocal tract for different vowels that are used to create an acoustic output when stimulated with an appropriate sound source in a new musical instrument: the Vocal Tract Organ. The shape of each printed vocal tract is recovered from magnetic resonance imaging. It sits atop a loudspeaker to which is provided an acoustic L-F model larynx input signal that is controlled by the notes played on a musical instrument digital interface device such as a keyboard. The larynx input is subject to vibrato with extent and frequency adjustable as desired within the ranges usually found for human singing. Polyphonic inputs for choral singing textures can be applied via a single loudspeaker and vocal tract, invoking the approximation of linearity in the voice production system, thereby making multiple vowel stops a possibility while keeping the complexity of the instrument in reasonable check. The Vocal Tract Organ offers a much more human and natural sounding result than the traditional Vox Humana stops found in larger pipe organs, offering the possibility of enhancing pipe organs of the future as well as becoming the basis for a "multi-vowel" chamber organ in its own right. Copyright © 2017 The Voice Foundation. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Vanden Bosch der Nederlanden, Christina M; Hannon, Erin E; Snyder, Joel S
Few studies comparing music and language processing have adequately controlled for low-level acoustical differences, making it unclear whether differences in music and language processing arise from domain-specific knowledge, acoustic characteristics, or both. We controlled acoustic characteristics by using the speech-to-song illusion, which often results in a perceptual transformation to song after several repetitions of an utterance. Participants performed a same-different pitch discrimination task for the initial repetition (heard as speech) and the final repetition (heard as song). Better detection was observed for pitch changes that violated rather than conformed to Western musical scale structure, but only when utterances transformed to song, indicating that music-specific pitch representations were activated and influenced perception. This shows that music-specific processes can be activated when an utterance is heard as song, suggesting that the high-level status of a stimulus as either language or music can be behaviorally dissociated from low-level acoustic factors. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
López, Sabrina; Riera, Pablo; Assaneo, María Florencia; Eguía, Manuel; Sigman, Mariano; Trevisan, Marcos A.
What are the features that impersonators select to elicit a speaker's identity? We built a voice database of public figures (targets) and imitations produced by professional impersonators. They produced one imitation based on their memory of the target (caricature) and another one after listening to the target audio (replica). A set of naive participants then judged identity and similarity of pairs of voices. Identity was better evoked by the caricatures and replicas were perceived to be closer to the targets in terms of voice similarity. We used this data to map relevant acoustic dimensions for each task. Our results indicate that speaker identity is mainly associated with vocal tract features, while perception of voice similarity is related to vocal folds parameters. We therefore show the way in which acoustic caricatures emphasize identity features at the cost of loosing similarity, which allows drawing an analogy with caricatures in the visual space.
Full Text Available The present study was motivated by the clinical observation of "laryngeal spasms" during dysfluency in an adult female stutterer. The flexible fiberoptic nasolaryngoscope was employed in an attempt to assess this phenomenon objectively. Findings from fiberscopic and spectrographic investigations provided evidence for a disturbance in laryngeal behaviour, and in turn served to determine the nature of the treatment programme. Asymmetry of the vocal folds and partial abductory laryngeal behaviour, reflecting a conflict between adductory and abductory forces, characterized the dysfluency in this patient. A subjective evaluation after treatment revealed a reduction in both severity and frequency of stuttering behaviour. Furthermore, fiberscopic examination carried out after treatment revealed an absence of the laryngeal disturbances noted previously. Results are considered in terms of vocal tract dynamics in stuttering and its clinical applicability.
Christensen, Mads Græsbøll
In this paper, a method for multi-channel pitch estimation is proposed. The method is a maximum likelihood estimator and is based on a parametric model where the signals in the various channels share the same fundamental frequency but can have different amplitudes, phases, and noise characteristics....... This essentially means that the model allows for different conditions in the various channels, like different signal-to-noise ratios, microphone characteristics and reverberation. Moreover, the method does not assume that a certain array structure is used but rather relies on a more general model and is hence...
Allen, Jacqui E; Belafsky, Peter C
Promising new techniques in the management of vocal fold nodules have been developed in the past 2 years. Simultaneously, the therapeutic use of botulinum toxin has rapidly expanded. This review explores the use of botulinum toxin in treatment of vocal nodules and summarizes current therapeutic concepts. New microsurgical instruments and techniques, refinements in laser technology, radiosurgical excision and steroid intralesional injections are all promising new techniques in the management of vocal nodules. Botulinum toxin-induced 'voice rest' is a new technique we have employed in patients with recalcitrant nodules. Successful resolution of nodules is possible with this technique, without the risk of vocal fold scarring inherent in dissection/excision techniques. Botulinum toxin usage is exponentially increasing, and large-scale, long-term studies demonstrate its safety profile. Targeted vocal fold temporary paralysis induced by botulinum toxin injection is a new, well tolerated and efficacious treatment in patients with persistent vocal fold nodules.
Simon-Thomas, Emiliana R; Keltner, Dacher J; Sauter, Disa; Sinicropi-Yao, Lara; Abramson, Anna
Studies of emotion signaling inform claims about the taxonomic structure, evolutionary origins, and physiological correlates of emotions. Emotion vocalization research has tended to focus on a limited set of emotions: anger, disgust, fear, sadness, surprise, happiness, and for the voice, also tenderness. Here, we examine how well brief vocal bursts can communicate 22 different emotions: 9 negative (Study 1) and 13 positive (Study 2), and whether prototypical vocal bursts convey emotions more reliably than heterogeneous vocal bursts (Study 3). Results show that vocal bursts communicate emotions like anger, fear, and sadness, as well as seldom-studied states like awe, compassion, interest, and embarrassment. Ancillary analyses reveal family-wise patterns of vocal burst expression. Errors in classification were more common within emotion families (e.g., 'self-conscious,' 'pro-social') than between emotion families. The three studies reported highlight the voice as a rich modality for emotion display that can inform fundamental constructs about emotion.
Uetsuki, Shizuka; Kinoshita, Hiroshi; Takahashi, Ryuichi; Obata, Satoshi; Kakigi, Tatsuya; Wada, Yoshiko; Yokoyama, Kazumasa
A 53-year-old right-handed woman had an extensive lesion in the left hemisphere due to an infarction caused by vasospasm secondary to subarachnoid bleeding. She exhibited persistent expressive-vocal amusia with no symptoms of aphasia. Evaluation of the patient's musical competence using the Montreal Battery for Evaluation of Amusia, rhythm reproduction tests, acoustic analysis of pitch upon singing familiar music, Japanese standard language tests, and other detailed clinical examinations revealed that her amusia was more dominantly related to pitch production. The intactness of her speech provided strong evidence that the right hemisphere played a major role in her linguistic processing. Data from functional magnetic resonance imaging while she was singing a familiar song, a scale, and reciting lyrics indicated that perilesional residual activation in the left hemisphere was associated with poor pitch production, while right hemispheric activation was involved in linguistic processing. The localization of infarction more anterior to the left Sylvian fissure might be related to the dominant deficits in expressive aspects of the singing of the patient. Compromised motor programming producing a single tone may have made a major contribution to her poor singing. Imperfect auditory feedback due to borderline perceptual ability or improper audio-motor associations might also have played a role. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Jakubowski, Kelly; Müllensiefen, Daniel; Stewart, Lauren
The ability to recall the absolute pitch level of familiar music (latent absolute pitch memory) is widespread in adults, in contrast to the rare ability to label single pitches without a reference tone (overt absolute pitch memory). The present research investigated the developmental profile of latent absolute pitch (AP) memory and explored individual differences related to this ability. In two experiments, 288 children from 4 to12 years of age performed significantly above chance at recognizing the absolute pitch level of familiar melodies. No age-related improvement or decline, nor effects of musical training, gender, or familiarity with the stimuli were found in regard to latent AP task performance. These findings suggest that latent AP memory is a stable ability that is developed from as early as age 4 and persists into adulthood.
Santurette, Sébastien; Dau, Torsten
Binaural pitch is a tonal sensation produced by introducing a frequency-dependent interaural phase shift in binaurally presented white noise. As no spectral cues are present in the physical stimulus, binaural pitch perception is assumed to rely on accurate temporal fine structure coding and intact...... binaural integration mechanisms. This study investigated to what extent basic auditory measures of binaural processing as well as cognitive abilities are correlated with the ability of hearing-impaired listeners to perceive binaural pitch. Subjects from three groups (1: normal-hearing; 2: cochlear...... hearingloss; 3: retro-cochlear impairment) were asked to identify the pitch contour of series of five notes of equal duration, ranging from 523 to 784 Hz, played either with Huggins’ binaural pitch stimuli (BP) or perceptually similar, but monaurally detectable, pitches (MP). All subjects from groups 1 and 2...
Thompson, W F; Hall, M D; Pressing, J
In 3 experiments, the authors examined short-term memory for pitch and duration in unfamiliar tone sequences. Participants were presented a target sequence consisting of 2 tones (Experiment 1) or 7 tones (Experiments 2 and 3) and then a probe tone. Participants indicated whether the probe tone matched 1 of the target tones in both pitch and duration. Error rates were relatively low if the probe tone matched 1 of the target tones or if it differed from target tones in pitch, duration, or both. Error rates were remarkably high, however, if the probe tone combined the pitch of 1 target tone with the duration of a different target tone. The results suggest that illusory conjunctions of these dimensions frequently occur. A mathematical model is presented that accounts for the relative contribution of pitch errors, duration errors, and illusory conjunctions of pitch and duration.
Garcia, Marcelo de Mattos; Magalhaes, Fabiana Pizanni; Dadalto, Gabriela Bijos; Moura, Marina Vimieiro Timponi de [Axial Centro de Imagem, Belo Horizonte, MG (Brazil)], e-mail: email@example.com, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
Vocal cord paralysis is a common cause of hoarseness. It may be secondary to many types of lesions along the cranial nerve X pathway and its branches, particularly the laryngeal recurrent nerves. Despite the idiopathic nature of a great number of cases, imaging methods play a very significant role in the investigation of etiologic factors, such as thyroid and esophagus neoplasias with secondary invasion of the laryngeal recurrent nerves. Other conditions such as aortic and right subclavian artery aneurysms also may be found. The knowledge of local anatomy and related diseases is of great importance for the radiologist, so that he can tailor the examination properly to allow an appropriate diagnosis and therapy planning. Additionally, considering that up to 35% of patients with vocal cord paralysis are asymptomatic, the recognition of radiological findings indicative of this condition is essential for the radiologist who must warn the referring physician on the imaging findings. In the present study, the authors review the anatomy and main diseases related to vocal cord paralysis, demonstrating them through typical cases evaluated by computed tomography and magnetic resonance imaging, besides describing radiological findings of laryngeal abnormalities indicative of this condition. (author)
Full Text Available For a long time, the exploration of emotions focused on facial expression, and vocal expression of emotion has only recently received interest. However, no validated battery of emotional vocal expressions has been published and made available to the researchers’ community. This paper aims at validating and proposing such material. 20 actors (10 men recorded sounds (words and interjections expressing six basic emotions (anger, disgust, fear, happiness, neutral and sadness. These stimuli were then submitted to a double validation phase: (1 preselection by experts; (2 quantitative and qualitative validation by 70 participants. 195 stimuli were selected for the final battery, each one depicting a precise emotion. The ratings provide a complete measure of intensity and specificity for each stimulus. This paper provides, to our knowledge, the first validated, freely available and highly standardized battery of emotional vocal expressions (words and intonations. This battery could constitute an interesting tool for the exploration of prosody processing among normal and pathological populations, in neuropsychology as well as psychiatry. Further works are nevertheless needed to complement the present material.
Vojnović, Milan; Bogavac, Ivana; Dobrijević, Ljiljana
The physical shape of vocal tract and its formant (resonant) frequencies are directly related. The study of this functional connectivity is essential in speech therapy practice with children. Most of the perceived children’s speech anomalies can be explained on a physical level: malfunctioning movement of articulation organs. The current problem is that there is no enough data on the anatomical shape of children’s vocal tract to create its acoustic model. Classical techniques for vocal tract...
Li, Nicole Y.K.; Heris, Hossein K.; Mongeau, Luc
The vocal folds, which are located in the larynx, are the main organ of voice production for human communication. The vocal folds are under continuous biomechanical stress similar to other mechanically active organs, such as the heart, lungs, tendons and muscles. During speech and singing, the vocal folds oscillate at frequencies ranging from 20 Hz to 3 kHz with amplitudes of a few millimeters. The biomechanical stress associated with accumulated phonation is believed to alter vocal fold cell activity and tissue structure in many ways. Excessive phonatory stress can damage tissue structure and induce a cell-mediated inflammatory response, resulting in a pathological vocal fold lesion. On the other hand, phonatory stress is one major factor in the maturation of the vocal folds into a specialized tri-layer structure. One specific form of vocal fold oscillation, which involves low impact and large amplitude excursion, is prescribed therapeutically for patients with mild vocal fold injuries. Although biomechanical forces affect vocal fold physiology and pathology, there is little understanding of how mechanical forces regulate these processes at the cellular and molecular level. Research into vocal fold mechanobiology has burgeoned over the past several years. Vocal fold bioreactors are being developed in several laboratories to provide a biomimic environment that allows the systematic manipulation of physical and biological factors on the cells of interest in vitro. Computer models have been used to simulate the integrated response of cells and proteins as a function of phonation stress. The purpose of this paper is to review current research on the mechanobiology of the vocal folds as it relates to growth, pathogenesis and treatment as well as to propose specific research directions that will advance our understanding of this subject. PMID:24812638
Simon-Thomas, E.; Keltner, D.; Sauter, D.; Sinicropi-Yao, L.; Abramson, A.
Studies of emotion signaling inform claims about the taxonomic structure, evolutionary origins, and physiological correlates of emotions. Emotion vocalization research has tended to focus on a limited set of emotions: anger, disgust, fear, sadness, surprise, happiness, and for the voice, also tenderness. Here, we examine how well brief vocal bursts can communicate 22 different emotions: 9 negative (Study 1) and 13 positive (Study 2), and whether prototypical vocal bursts convey emotions more ...
Backus, Sherry I.; Kraszewski, Andrew; Kontaxis, Andreas; Gibbons, Mandi; Bido, Jennifer; Graziano, Jessica; Hafer, Jocelyn; Jones, Kristofer J.; Hillstrom, Howard; Fealy, Stephen
Objectives: Pitch count has been studied extensively in the overhand throwing athlete. However, pitch count and fatigue have not been systematically evaluated in the female windmill (underhand) throwing athlete. Direct kinematic measurements of the glenohumeral and scapulo-thoracic joint have not to be correlated and determined. The purpose is to measure scapular kinematics for the high school female windmill softball pitcher and identify kinematic adaptions and changes in pitching performanc...
Headline: Kinematic changes in technique of a softball pitch. Aims of thesis: I will compare the pitches ofprofessinal european softball wonam pitchers and then I will compare their technique with professional czech woman pitcher. Methods: Results: Key words: For examination of different techniques, I choosed thease professinal european softball wonam pitchers 3 Italians and 2 Greeks. Videotape was taken on European championship 2005 in Prague. For description of softball pitch I used a metho...
Norman-Haignere, Sam V; Albouy, Philippe; Caclin, Anne; McDermott, Josh H; Kanwisher, Nancy G; Tillmann, Barbara
Congenital amusia is a lifelong deficit in music perception thought to reflect an underlying impairment in the perception and memory of pitch. The neural basis of amusic impairments is actively debated. Some prior studies have suggested that amusia stems from impaired connectivity between auditory and frontal cortex. However, it remains possible that impairments in pitch coding within auditory cortex also contribute to the disorder, in part because prior studies have not measured responses from the cortical regions most implicated in pitch perception in normal individuals. We addressed this question by measuring fMRI responses in 11 subjects with amusia and 11 age- and education-matched controls to a stimulus contrast that reliably identifies pitch-responsive regions in normal individuals: harmonic tones versus frequency-matched noise. Our findings demonstrate that amusic individuals with a substantial pitch perception deficit exhibit clusters of pitch-responsive voxels that are comparable in extent, selectivity, and anatomical location to those of control participants. We discuss possible explanations for why amusics might be impaired at perceiving pitch relations despite exhibiting normal fMRI responses to pitch in their auditory cortex: (1) individual neurons within the pitch-responsive region might exhibit abnormal tuning or temporal coding not detectable with fMRI, (2) anatomical tracts that link pitch-responsive regions to other brain areas (e.g., frontal cortex) might be altered, and (3) cortical regions outside of pitch-responsive cortex might be abnormal. The ability to identify pitch-responsive regions in individual amusic subjects will make it possible to ask more precise questions about their role in amusia in future work. Copyright © 2016 the authors 0270-6474/16/362986-09$15.00/0.
Vanzella, Patr?cia; Schellenberg, E. Glenn
Background Absolute pitch (AP) is the ability to identify or produce isolated musical tones. It is evident primarily among individuals who started music lessons in early childhood. Because AP requires memory for specific pitches as well as learned associations with verbal labels (i.e., note names), it represents a unique opportunity to study interactions in memory between linguistic and nonlinguistic information. One untested hypothesis is that the pitch of voices may be difficult for AP poss...
Basic circuits of a discriminator for discrimination of pulses with the duration greater than the preset one, and of a multifunctional discriminator allowing to discriminate pulses with the duration greater (tsub(p)>tsub(s)) and lesser (tsub(p) tsub(s) and with the duration tsub(p) [ru
Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Although some molecules have been identified as responsible for human language disorders, there is still little information about what molecular mechanisms establish the faculty of human language. Since mice, like songbirds, produce complex ultrasonic vocalizations for intraspecific communication in several social contexts, they can be good mammalian models for studying the molecular basis of human language. Having found that cadherins are involved in the vocal development of the Bengalese finch, a songbird, we expected cadherins to also be involved in mouse vocalizations. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: To examine whether similar molecular mechanisms underlie the vocalizations of songbirds and mammals, we categorized behavioral deficits including vocalization in cadherin-6 knockout mice. Comparing the ultrasonic vocalizations of cadherin-6 knockout mice with those of wild-type controls, we found that the peak frequency and variations of syllables were differed between the mutant and wild-type mice in both pup-isolation and adult-courtship contexts. Vocalizations during male-male aggression behavior, in contrast, did not differ between mutant and wild-type mice. Open-field tests revealed differences in locomotors activity in both heterozygote and homozygote animals and no difference in anxiety behavior. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: Our results suggest that cadherin-6 plays essential roles in locomotor activity and ultrasonic vocalization. These findings also support the idea that different species share some of the molecular mechanisms underlying vocal behavior.
Kirgezen, Tolga; Sunter, Ahmet Volkan; Yigit, Ozgur; Huq, Gulben Erdem
The study aimed to evaluate the existence of sex hormone receptors in the subunits of vocal fold. This is a cadaver study. The androgen, estrogen, and progesterone receptors were examined in the epithelium (EP), superficial layer of the lamina propria (SLP), vocal ligament (VL), and macula flava (MF) of the vocal folds from 42 human cadavers (21 male, 21 female) by immunohistochemical methods. Their staining ratios were scored and statistically compared. The androgen receptor score was significantly higher for the MF than for the EP and SLP (P vocal fold, mostly in the MF and VLs. Copyright © 2017 The Voice Foundation. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Full Text Available Gaussian mixture models (GMMs are commonly used in text-independent speaker identification systems. However, for large speaker databases, their high computational run-time limits their use in online or real-time speaker identification situations. Two-stage identification systems, in which the database is partitioned into clusters based on some proximity criteria and only a single-cluster GMM is run in every test, have been suggested in literature to speed up the identification process. However, most clustering algorithms used have shown limited success, apparently because the clustering and GMM feature spaces used are derived from similar speech characteristics. This paper presents a new clustering approach based on the concept of a pitch correlogram that captures frame-to-frame pitch variations of a speaker rather than short-time spectral characteristics like cepstral coefficient, spectral slopes, and so forth. The effectiveness of this two-stage identification process is demonstrated on the IVIE corpus of 110 speakers. The overall system achieves a run-time advantage of 500% as well as a 10% reduction of error in overall speaker identification.
Freyd, J J; Kelly, M H; DeKay, M L
When a visual pattern is displayed at successively different orientations such that a rotation or translation is implied, an observer's memory for the final position is displaced forward. This phenomenon of representational momentum shares some similarities with physical momentum. For instance, the amount of memory shift is proportional to the implied velocity of the inducing display; representational momentum is specifically proportional to the final, not the average, velocity; representational momentum follows a continuous stopping function for the first 250 ms or so of the retention interval. In a previous paper (Kelly & Freyd, 1987) we demonstrated a forward memory asymmetry using implied changes in pitch, for subjects without formal musical training. In the current paper we replicate our earlier finding and show that the forward memory asymmetry occurs for subjects with formal musical training as well (Experiment 1). We then show the structural similarity between representational momentum in memory for pitch with previous reports of parametric effects using visual stimuli. We report a velocity effect for auditory momentum (Experiment 2), we demonstrate specifically that the velocity effect depends on the implied acceleration (Experiment 3), and we show that the stopping function for auditory momentum is qualitatively the same as that for visual momentum (Experiment 4). We consider the implications of these results for theories of mental representation.
Jensen, Jesper Rindom; Christensen, Mads Græsbøll; Jensen, Søren Holdt
, it was recently considered to estimate the DOA and pitch jointly. In this paper, we propose two novel methods for DOA and pitch estimation. They both yield maximum-likelihood estimates in white Gaussian noise scenar- ios, where the SNR may be different across channels, as opposed to state-of-the-art methods......Traditionally, direction-of-arrival (DOA) and pitch estimation of multichannel, periodic sources have been considered as two separate problems. Separate estimation may render the task of resolving sources with similar DOA or pitch impossible, and it may decrease the estimation accuracy. Therefore...
Full Text Available This fMRI study examines shared and distinct cortical areas involved in the auditory perception of song and speech at the level of their underlying constituents: words, pitch and rhythm. Univariate and multivariate analyses were performed on the brain activity patterns of six conditions, arranged in a subtractive hierarchy: sung sentences including words, pitch and rhythm; hummed speech prosody and song melody containing only pitch patterns and rhythm; as well as the pure musical or speech rhythm.Systematic contrasts between these balanced conditions following their hierarchical organization showed a great overlap between song and speech at all levels in the bilateral temporal lobe, but suggested a differential role of the inferior frontal gyrus (IFG and intraparietal sulcus (IPS in processing song and speech. The left IFG was involved in word- and pitch-related processing in speech, the right IFG in processing pitch in song.Furthermore, the IPS showed sensitivity to discrete pitch relations in song as opposed to the gliding pitch in speech. Finally, the superior temporal gyrus and premotor cortex coded for general differences between words and pitch patterns, irrespective of whether they were sung or spoken. Thus, song and speech share many features which are reflected in a fundamental similarity of brain areas involved in their perception. However, fine-grained acoustic differences on word and pitch level are reflected in the activity of IFG and IPS.
Yin, Jun; Zhang, Zhaoyan
The influence of the thyroarytenoid (TA) and cricothyroid (CT) muscle activation on vocal fold stiffness and eigenfrequencies was investigated in a muscularly controlled continuum model of the vocal folds. Unlike the general understanding that vocal fold fundamental frequency was determined by vocal fold tension, this study showed that vocal fold eigenfrequencies were primarily determined by vocal fold stiffness. This study further showed that, with reference to the resting state of zero stra...
Jakubowski, Kelly; Müllensiefen, Daniel
Levitin's findings that nonmusicians could produce from memory the absolute pitches of self-selected pop songs have been widely cited in the music psychology literature. These findings suggest that latent absolute pitch (AP) memory may be a more widespread trait within the population than traditional AP labelling ability. However, it has been left unclear what factors may facilitate absolute pitch retention for familiar pieces of music. The aim of the present paper was to investigate factors that may contribute to latent AP memory using Levitin's sung production paradigm for AP memory and comparing results to the outcomes of a pitch labelling task, a relative pitch memory test, measures of music-induced emotions, and various measures of participants' musical backgrounds. Our results suggest that relative pitch memory and the quality and degree of music-elicited emotions impact on latent AP memory.
Isono, Kenji; Tateishi, Yoshinori; Mano, Tadashi.
Object: To reduce the period for discriminating whether or not spacer pin pitch is satisfactory by simultaneously inserting a number of reference rods into a nuclear fuel assembly spacer ring element of a reactor and arranging them such that they can be simultaneously withdrawn to simplify the withdrawing operation. Structure: A spacer provided with a ring element which clamps a nuclear fuel element is supported on a spacer support with a rod secured to the support as a guide and is secured to the support by securing means. A vertically movable structure with a reference rod provided upright and thru-holes formed in two support plates provided in the same row as the spacer ring element is operated by a fluid pressure mechanism to simultaneously insert the reference rod into the spacer ring element. The reference rod is mounted in support plates via ball bearings such that it is slightly movable in the horizontal direction, and it is aligned with respect to the core of the ring element. The intercore distance of the reference rod is measured with the reference rod inserted in the ring element, thereby measuring the space pin pitch. From the results of measurement, discrimination as to whether the spacer is satisfactory or not is made. (Kamimura, M.)
Yin, Jun; Zhang, Zhaoyan
The influence of the thyroarytenoid (TA) and cricothyroid (CT) muscle activation on vocal fold stiffness and eigenfrequencies was investigated in a muscularly controlled continuum model of the vocal folds. Unlike the general understanding that vocal fold fundamental frequency was determined by vocal fold tension, this study showed that vocal fold eigenfrequencies were primarily determined by vocal fold stiffness. This study further showed that, with reference to the resting state of zero strain, vocal fold stiffness in both body and cover layers increased with either vocal fold elongation or shortening. As a result, whether vocal fold eigenfrequencies increased or decreased with CT/TA activation depended on how the CT/TA interaction influenced vocal fold deformation. For conditions of strong CT activation and thus an elongated vocal fold, increasing TA contraction reduced the degree of vocal fold elongation and thus reduced vocal fold eigenfrequencies. For conditions of no CT activation and thus a resting or slightly shortened vocal fold, increasing TA contraction increased the degree of vocal fold shortening and thus increased vocal fold eigenfrequencies. In the transition region of a slightly elongated vocal fold, increasing TA contraction first decreased and then increased vocal fold eigenfrequencies. PMID:23654401
Hunter, Eric J; Banks, Russell E
Occupational voice users report higher instances of vocal health problems. Women, who are more likely than men to report voice problems, are the largest members of some occupational voice users, such as teachers. While a common complaint among this population is vocal fatigue, it has been difficult to quantify. Therefore, the goal of this study is to quantify vocal fatigue generally in school teachers and investigate any related gender differences. Six hundred forty (518 female, 122 male) teachers were surveyed using an online questionnaire consisting in part of the Vocal Fatigue Index (VFI), an index specifically designed to quantify vocal fatigue. Compared to vocally healthy adults, the teachers surveyed were 3 times as likely to report vocal tiredness or vocal avoidance and over 3 times as likely to report physical voice discomfort. Additionally, female teachers were more likely to have scores approaching those with dysphonia. The VFI quantified elevated levels of vocal fatigue in teachers, with a significant prevalence of symptoms reported among females compared to males. Further, because the VFI indicated elevated complaints (between normal and dysphonic) in a population likely to be elevated, the VFI might be used to identify early indications of voice problems and/or track recovery.
Leder, Steven B; Ross, Douglas A
This study prospectively investigated the incidence of vocal fold immobility, unilateral and bilateral, and its influence on aspiration status in a referred population of 1452 patients for a dysphagia evaluation from a large, urban, tertiary-care, teaching hospital. Main outcome measures included overall incidence of vocal fold immobility and aspiration status, with specific emphasis on age, etiology, and side of vocal fold immobility, i.e., right, left, or bilateral. Overall incidence of vocal fold immobility was 5.6% (81 of 1452 patients), including 47 males (mean age 55.7 yr) and 34 females (mean age 59.7 yr). In the subgroup of patients with vocal fold immobility, 31% (25 of 81) exhibited unilateral right, 60% (49 of 81) unilateral left, and 9% (7 of 81) bilateral impairment. Overall incidence of aspiration was found to be 29% (426 of 1452) of all patients referred for a swallow evaluation. Aspiration was observed in 44% (36 of 81) of patients presenting with vocal fold immobility, i.e., 44% (11 of 25) unilateral right, 43% (21 of 49) unilateral left, and 57% (4 of 7) bilateral vocal fold immobility. Left vocal fold immobility occurred most frequently due to surgical trauma. A liquid bolus was aspirated more often than a puree bolus. Side of vocal fold immobility and age were not factors that increased incidence of aspiration. In conclusion, vocal fold immobility, with an incidence of 5.6%, is not an uncommon finding in patients referred for a dysphagia evaluation in the acute-care setting, and vocal fold immobility, when present, was associated with a 15% increased incidence of aspiration when compared with a population already being evaluated for dysphagia.
Mizuta, Masanobu; Kurita, Takashi; Dillon, Neal P; Kimball, Emily E; Garrett, C Gaelyn; Sivasankar, M Preeti; Webster, Robert J; Rousseau, Bernard
A custom-designed probe was developed to measure vocal fold surface resistance in vivo. The purpose of this study was to demonstrate proof of concept of using vocal fold surface resistance as a proxy of functional tissue integrity after acute phonotrauma using an animal model. Prospective animal study. New Zealand White breeder rabbits received 120 minutes of airflow without vocal fold approximation (control) or 120 minutes of raised intensity phonation (experimental). The probe was inserted via laryngoscope and placed on the left vocal fold under endoscopic visualization. Vocal fold surface resistance of the middle one-third of the vocal fold was measured after 0 (baseline), 60, and 120 minutes of phonation. After the phonation procedure, the larynx was harvested and prepared for transmission electron microscopy. In the control group, vocal fold surface resistance values remained stable across time points. In the experimental group, surface resistance (X% ± Y% relative to baseline) was significantly decreased after 120 minutes of raised intensity phonation. This was associated with structural changes using transmission electron microscopy, which revealed damage to the vocal fold epithelium after phonotrauma, including disruption of the epithelium and basement membrane, dilated paracellular spaces, and alterations to epithelial microprojections. In contrast, control vocal fold specimens showed well-preserved stratified squamous epithelia. These data demonstrate the feasibility of measuring vocal fold surface resistance in vivo as a means of evaluating functional vocal fold epithelial barrier integrity. Device prototypes are in development for additional testing, validation, and for clinical applications in laryngology. NA Laryngoscope, 127:E364-E370, 2017. © 2017 The American Laryngological, Rhinological and Otological Society, Inc.
Horáček, Jaromír; Radolf, Vojtěch; Laukkanen, A. M.
Roč. 37, August (2017), s. 39-49 ISSN 1746-8094 R&D Projects: GA ČR(CZ) GA16-01246S Institutional support: RVO:61388998 Keywords : biomechanics of voice * vocal tract acoustics * phonation into tubes * water resistance voice therapy * bubbling frequency * formant frequencies Subject RIV: BI - Acoustics OBOR OECD: Acoustics Impact factor: 2.214, year: 2016
Prather, J F; Peters, S; Nowicki, S; Mooney, R
Brain mechanisms for communication must establish a correspondence between sensory and motor codes used to represent the signal. One idea is that this correspondence is established at the level of single neurons that are active when the individual performs a particular gesture or observes a similar gesture performed by another individual. Although neurons that display a precise auditory-vocal correspondence could facilitate vocal communication, they have yet to be identified. Here we report that a certain class of neurons in the swamp sparrow forebrain displays a precise auditory-vocal correspondence. We show that these neurons respond in a temporally precise fashion to auditory presentation of certain note sequences in this songbird's repertoire and to similar note sequences in other birds' songs. These neurons display nearly identical patterns of activity when the bird sings the same sequence, and disrupting auditory feedback does not alter this singing-related activity, indicating it is motor in nature. Furthermore, these neurons innervate striatal structures important for song learning, raising the possibility that singing-related activity in these cells is compared to auditory feedback to guide vocal learning.
Galindo, Gabriel E.; Peterson, Sean D.; Erath, Byron D.; Castro, Christian; Hillman, Robert E.; Zañartu, Matías
Purpose: Our goal was to test prevailing assumptions about the underlying biomechanical and aeroacoustic mechanisms associated with phonotraumatic lesions of the vocal folds using a numerical lumped-element model of voice production. Method: A numerical model with a triangular glottis, posterior glottal opening, and arytenoid posturing is…
Yamauchi, Akihito; Imagawa, Hiroshi; Sakakibara, Ken-Ichi; Yokonishi, Hisayuki; Nito, Takaharu; Yamasoba, Tatsuya; Tayama, Niro
Purpose: In this study, the authors aimed to analyze longitudinal data from high-speed digital images in normative subjects using multi-line kymography. Method: Vocally healthy subjects were divided into young (9 men and 17 women; M[subscript age] = 27 years) and older groups (8 men and 12 women; M[subscript age] = 73 years). From high-speed…
Valehrach, Jan; Guziur, Petr; Riha, Tomas; Plasek, Otto
The paper focuses on defects of the running surface of the rail, namely the rail corrugation defect and specifically long-pitch corrugation in curves of small radii. These defects cause a shorter life of the rails, greater maintenance costs and increase the noise and vibration pollution. Therefore, it is very important to understand the formation and development of the imperfection of the rails. In the paper, various sections of railway tracks in the Czech Republic are listed, each of them completed with comparison of defect development, the particular track superstructure, rolling stock, axle load, traffic load etc. Based on performed measurements, defect development has been proved as different on sections with similar (or even same) parameters. The paper assumes that a train velocity is the significant circumstance for defect development rates. Assessment of track section with under sleeper pads, which are expected to be the one of the possible ways to suppress the corrugation defect development, is included in evaluation.
Cantarella, Giovanna; Baracca, Giovanna; Pignataro, Lorenzo; Forti, Stella
The goal was to identify acoustic and aerodynamic indices that allow the discrimination of a benign organic dysphonic voice from a normal voice. Fifty-three patients affected by dysphonia caused by vocal folds benign lesions, and a control group were subjected to maximum phonation time (MPT) measurements, GRB perceptual evaluations and acoustic/aerodynamic tests. All analyzed variables except the airflow variation coefficient were significantly different between the two groups. The unique significant factors in the discrimination between healthy and dysphonic subjects were the aerodynamic indices of MPT and Glottal efficiency index, and the acoustic index Shimmer. These results show that a combination of three parameters can discriminate a voice deviance and highlight the importance of a multidimensional assessment for objective voice evaluation.
Landsberger, David; Galvin, John J
In cochlear implants (CIs), simultaneous or sequential stimulation of adjacent electrodes can produce intermediate pitch percepts between those of the component electrodes. However, it is unclear whether simultaneous and sequential virtual channels (VCs) can be discriminated. In this study, CI users were asked to discriminate simultaneous and sequential VCs; discrimination was measured for monopolar (MP) and bipolar + 1 stimulation (BP + 1), i.e., relatively broad and focused stimulation modes. For sequential VCs, the interpulse interval (IPI) varied between 0.0 and 1.8 ms. All stimuli were presented at comfortably loud, loudness-balanced levels at a 250 pulse per second per electrode (ppse) stimulation rate. On average, CI subjects were able to reliably discriminate between sequential and simultaneous VCs. While there was no significant effect of IPI or stimulation mode on VC discrimination, some subjects exhibited better VC discrimination with BP + 1 stimulation. Subjects' discrimination between sequential and simultaneous VCs was correlated with electrode discrimination, suggesting that spatial selectivity may influence perception of sequential VCs. To maintain equal loudness, sequential VC amplitudes were nearly double those of simultaneous VCs, presumably resulting in a broader spread of excitation. These results suggest that perceptual differences between simultaneous and sequential VCs might be explained by differences in the spread of excitation. © 2011 Acoustical Society of America
Nielsen, Jannie Sønderkær; van de Pieterman, René P.; Sørensen, John Dalsgaard
with a theoretical model based on aeroelastic simulations. The blade moment is found to have only minor influence on the friction in the blade bearing. The main factors affecting the static friction are the temperature and time after the latest pitch movement. Pitch motor current and torque are proportional...
Learning to sing from notation is a complex task, and accurately performing pitches without an external reference can be particularly challenging. As such, the use of mnemonic devices to reinforce tonal relationships is a long-standing practice among musicians. Chief among these mnemonic devices are pitch syllable systems and Curwen hand signs.…
Song, Jialei; Luo, Haoxiang; Hedrick, Tyson L
In hovering flight, hummingbirds reverse the angle of attack of their wings through pitch reversal in order to generate aerodynamic lift during both downstroke and upstroke. In addition, the wings may pitch during translation to further enhance lift production. It is not yet clear whether these pitching motions are caused by the wing inertia or actuated through the musculoskeletal system. Here we perform a computational analysis of the pitching dynamics by incorporating the realistic wing kinematics to determine the inertial effects. The aerodynamic effect is also included using the pressure data from a previous three-dimensional computational fluid dynamics simulation of a hovering hummingbird. The results show that like many insects, pitch reversal of the hummingbird is, to a large degree, caused by the wing inertia. However, actuation power input at the root is needed in the beginning of pronation to initiate a fast pitch reversal and also in mid-downstroke to enable a nose-up pitching motion for lift enhancement. The muscles on the wing may not necessarily be activated for pitching of the distal section. Finally, power analysis of the flapping motion shows that there is no requirement for substantial elastic energy storage or energy absorption at the shoulder joint. (paper)
Niebuhr, Oliver; Hoekstra, Jarich
for language documentation and conservation purposes. We selected a small part of this corpus – interviews of 10 elderly speakers – and conducted multiparametric F0 and duration measurements, focusing on nuclear rising-falling pitch accent patterns. We found strong evidence for a phonological pitch...
shown to influence incidence of rugby injuries. Harsh weather conditions and detrimental effect on poor Kenyan rugby pitches create a unique environment for injury exposure. We conducted a whole population prospective cohort study to determine the association of pitch conditions with injury incidence and severity.
Kronvall, Ted; Jakobsson, Andreas; Hansen, Martin Weiss
In this paper, we propose a novel multi-pitch estimator for stereophonic mixtures, allowing for pitch estimation on multi-channel audio even if the amplitude and delay panning parameters are unknown. The presented method does not require prior knowledge of the number of sources present in the mix...
Posedel, James; Emery, Lisa; Souza, Benjamin; Fountain, Catherine
Previous research has suggested that training on a musical instrument is associated with improvements in working memory and musical pitch perception ability. Good working memory and musical pitch perception ability, in turn, have been linked to certain aspects of language production. The current study examines whether working memory and/or pitch…
Clarkson, Marsha G.; Zettler, Cynthia M.; Follmer, Michelle J.; Faulk, Margaret; Takagi, Michael J.
To measure the strength of the pitch of iterated rippled noise (IRN), 19 adults were tested in an operant conditioning procedure. Seven adults had music training and currently played an instrument; 12 adults had no training and did not currently play an instrument. To generate IRN, a 500-ms Gaussian noise stimulus was delayed by 5 or 6 ms (pitches of 200 or 166 Hz) and added to the original for 16 iterations. IRN stimuli having one delay were presented repeatedly. On signal trials the delay changed for 6 s. Stimulus level roved from 63-67 dBA (background of 28 dBA). Adults learned to press a button when the stimulus changed. Testing started with IRN stimuli having 0-dB attenuation (i.e., maximal pitch strength). Stimuli having weaker pitches (i.e., progressively greater attenuation applied to the delayed noise) followed. Strength of pitch was quantified as the maximum attenuation for which pitch was discerned. For each subject, threshold attenuation for pitch strength was extrapolated as the 71% point on a psychometric function depicting percent correct performance as a function of attenuation. Mean thresholds revealed that the pitch percept was similar for both nonmusically trained (18.70 dB) and musically trained adults (18.73 dB).
Song, Jialei; Luo, Haoxiang; Hedrick, Tyson L
In hovering flight, hummingbirds reverse the angle of attack of their wings through pitch reversal in order to generate aerodynamic lift during both downstroke and upstroke. In addition, the wings may pitch during translation to further enhance lift production. It is not yet clear whether these pitching motions are caused by the wing inertia or actuated through the musculoskeletal system. Here we perform a computational analysis of the pitching dynamics by incorporating the realistic wing kinematics to determine the inertial effects. The aerodynamic effect is also included using the pressure data from a previous three-dimensional computational fluid dynamics simulation of a hovering hummingbird. The results show that like many insects, pitch reversal of the hummingbird is, to a large degree, caused by the wing inertia. However, actuation power input at the root is needed in the beginning of pronation to initiate a fast pitch reversal and also in mid-downstroke to enable a nose-up pitching motion for lift enhancement. The muscles on the wing may not necessarily be activated for pitching of the distal section. Finally, power analysis of the flapping motion shows that there is no requirement for substantial elastic energy storage or energy absorption at the shoulder joint.
Pulp resin is also influenced by effective alkali concentration of the pulping medium. With increase in effective alkali concentration from 13% to 15%, pulp pitch is reduced. The interaction effect of storage and effective alkali concentration was not significant indicating that reduction in pulp pitch caused by effective alkali ...
Gasparutto, X.; van der Graaff, E; van der Helm, F.C.T.; Veeger, H.E.J.; Colloud, F.; Domalain, M.; Monnet, T.
The purpose of this study was to assess the rotation and translation velocity of the shoulder complex during fastball pitching in baseball. 8 pitchers from the Dutch AAA team performed each 3 fastball pitches. Their motion was recorded by an opto-electronic device. Kinematic computation was
Rasmussen, Eva Rye; Mey, Kristianna
Ramsay Hunt syndrome is defined by herpes zoster oticus and peripheral facial nerve palsy which is often associated with otalgia. The syndrome is, in rare cases, associated with other cranial nerve paralyses including the vagal nerve causing unilateral vocal cord paralysis. Vocal cord paralysis...
Bartels-Velthuis, A.A.; Jenner, J.A.; van de Willige, G.; van Os, J.; Wiersma, D.
Background Hearing voices occurs in middle childhood, but little is known about prevalence, aetiology and immediate consequences. Aims To investigate prevalence, developmental risk factors and behavioural correlates of auditory vocal hallucinations in 7- and 8-year-olds. Method Auditory vocal
Pembrook, Randall G.
Reports on a study which reinforces prior findings on melodic memory that show a majority of students do not sing accurately enough after only one hearing of a melody to benefit from vocalization memory techniques. Questions whether vocalization can be a memory reinforcer in melodies that are shorter and simpler than those used in this research.…
Moore, Robyn Cantle
The Infant Monitor of vocal Production (IMP) was conceived as an educational strategy to help parents understand the nature and pace of their baby's vocal development following neonatal diagnosis and amplification for hearing loss. The potential for other clinical applications emerged with use. The instrument presents as a series of…
Geberzahn, Nicole; Aubin, Thierry
Vocal performance refers to the ability to produce vocal signals close to physical limits. Such motor skills can be used by conspecifics to assess a signaller's competitive potential. For example it is difficult for birds to produce repeated syllables both rapidly and with a broad frequency bandwidth. Deviation from an upper-bound regression of frequency bandwidth on trill rate has been widely used to assess vocal performance. This approach is, however, only applicable to simple trilled songs, and even then may be affected by differences in syllable complexity. Using skylarks (Alauda arvensis) as a birdsong model with a very complex song structure, we detected another performance trade-off: minimum gap duration between syllables was longer when the frequency ratio between the end of one syllable and the start of the next syllable (inter-syllable frequency shift) was large. This allowed us to apply a novel measure of vocal performance ¿ vocal gap deviation: the deviation from a lower-bound regression of gap duration on inter-syllable frequency shift. We show that skylarks increase vocal performance in an aggressive context suggesting that this trait might serve as a signal for competitive potential. We suggest using vocal gap deviation in future studies to assess vocal performance in songbird species with complex structure.
Hapner, Edie; Gilman, Marina
Jewish cantors comprise a subset of vocal professionals that is not well understood by vocal health professionals. This study aimed to document the vocal demands, vocal training, reported incidence of voice problems, and treatment-seeking behavior of Reform Jewish cantors. The study used a prospective observational design to anonymously query Reform Jewish cantors using a 35-item multiple-choice survey distributed online. Demographic information, medical history, vocal music training, cantorial duties, history of voice problems, and treatment-seeking behavior were addressed. Results indicated that many of the commonly associated risk factors for developing voice disorders were present in this population, including high vocal demands, reduced vocal downtime, allergies, and acid reflux. Greater than 65% of the respondents reported having had a voice problem that interfered with their ability to perform their duties at some time during their careers. Reform Jewish cantors are a population of occupational voice users who may be currently unidentified and underserved by vocal health professionals. The results of the survey suggest that Reform Jewish cantors are occupational voice users and are at high risk for developing voice disorders. Copyright © 2012 The Voice Foundation. Published by Mosby, Inc. All rights reserved.
Deci, Edward L.; And Others
Coded maternal vocalizations during videotaped play sessions of mothers and their six- or seven-year-old children. Children's intrinsic motivation was assessed by observing children's play when they were alone in a room. Found a negative relationship between maternal controlling vocalizations and children's intrinsic motivation. (MM)
Humbert, Ianessa A; Poletto, Christopher J; Saxon, Keith G; Kearney, Pamela R; Ludlow, Christy L
Closure of the true and false vocal folds is a normal part of airway protection during swallowing. Individuals with reduced or delayed true vocal fold closure can be at risk for aspiration and may benefit from intervention to ameliorate the problem. Surface electrical stimulation is currently used during therapy for dysphagia, despite limited knowledge of its physiological effects. Prospective single effects study. The immediate physiological effect of surface stimulation on true vocal fold angle was examined at rest in 27 healthy adults using 10 different electrode placements on the submental and neck regions. Fiberoptic nasolaryngoscopic recordings during passive inspiration were used to measure change in true vocal fold angle with stimulation. Vocal fold angles changed only to a small extent during two electrode placements (P vocal fold abduction was 2.4 degrees; while horizontal placements of electrodes in the submental region produced a mean adduction of 2.8 degrees (P = .03). Surface electrical stimulation to the submental and neck regions does not produce immediate true vocal fold adduction adequate for airway protection during swallowing, and one position may produce a slight increase in true vocal fold opening.
Chen, Yining; Matheson, Laura E; Sakata, Jon T
Social processes profoundly influence speech and language acquisition. Despite the importance of social influences, little is known about how social interactions modulate vocal learning. Like humans, songbirds learn their vocalizations during development, and they provide an excellent opportunity to reveal mechanisms of social influences on vocal learning. Using yoked experimental designs, we demonstrate that social interactions with adult tutors for as little as 1 d significantly enhanced vocal learning. Social influences on attention to song seemed central to the social enhancement of learning because socially tutored birds were more attentive to the tutor's songs than passively tutored birds, and because variation in attentiveness and in the social modulation of attention significantly predicted variation in vocal learning. Attention to song was influenced by both the nature and amount of tutor song: Pupils paid more attention to songs that tutors directed at them and to tutors that produced fewer songs. Tutors altered their song structure when directing songs at pupils in a manner that resembled how humans alter their vocalizations when speaking to infants, that was distinct from how tutors changed their songs when singing to females, and that could influence attention and learning. Furthermore, social interactions that rapidly enhanced learning increased the activity of noradrenergic and dopaminergic midbrain neurons. These data highlight striking parallels between humans and songbirds in the social modulation of vocal learning and suggest that social influences on attention and midbrain circuitry could represent shared mechanisms underlying the social modulation of vocal learning.
Owens, Jessica L; Olsen, Mariana; Fontaine, Amy; Kloth, Christopher; Kershenbaum, Arik; Waller, Sara
Cat vocal behavior, in particular, the vocal and social behavior of feral cats, is poorly understood, as are the differences between feral and fully domestic cats. The relationship between feral cat social and vocal behavior is important because of the markedly different ecology of feral and domestic cats, and enhanced comprehension of the repertoire and potential information content of feral cat calls can provide both better understanding of the domestication and socialization process, and improved welfare for feral cats undergoing adoption. Previous studies have used conflicting classification schemes for cat vocalizations, often relying on onomatopoeic or popular descriptions of call types (e.g., "miow"). We studied the vocalizations of 13 unaltered domestic cats that complied with our behavioral definition used to distinguish feral cats from domestic. A total of 71 acoustic units were extracted and visually analyzed for the construction of a hierarchical classification of vocal sounds, based on acoustic properties. We identified 3 major categories (tonal, pulse, and broadband) that further breakdown into 8 subcategories, and show a high degree of reliability when sounds are classified blindly by independent observers (Fleiss' Kappa K = 0.863). Due to the limited behavioral contexts in this study, additional subcategories of cat vocalizations may be identified in the future, but our hierarchical classification system allows for the addition of new categories and new subcategories as they are described. This study shows that cat vocalizations are diverse and complex, and provides an objective and reliable classification system that can be used in future studies.
Nybacka, Ida; Simberg, Susanna; Santtila, Pekka; Sala, Eeva; Sandnabba, N. Kenneth
Purpose: Recently, Simberg et al. (2009) found genetic effects on a composite variable consisting of 6 vocal symptom items measuring dysphonia. The purpose of the present study was to determine genetic and environmental effects on the individual vocal symptoms in a population-based sample of Finnish twins. Method: The sample comprised 1,728 twins…
Bonilha, Heather Shaw; White, Lisa; Kuckhahn, Kelsey; Gerlach, Terri Treman; Deliyski, Dimitar D.
Mucus aggregation on the vocal folds is a common finding from laryngeal endoscopy. Patients with voice disorders report the presence of mucus aggregation. Patients also report that mucus aggregation causes them to clear their throat, a behavior believed to be harmful to vocal fold mucosa. Even though clinicians and patients report and discuss…
Schutte, HK; McCafferty, G; Coman, W; Carroll, R
Vocal fold vibration patterns form the basis for the production of vocal sound. Over the years much effort has been spend to optimize the ways to visualize and give a description of these patterns. Before video possibilities became available the description of the patterns was Very time-consuming.
Kayhan, Fatih; Uguz, Faruk; Kayhan, Ayşegül; Toktaş, Fikriye Ilay
Tics are stereotypical repetitive involuntary movements (motor tics) or sounds (vocal tics). Although the emergence of tics were reported in a few cases with the use of selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors, there was no case with bupropion extended-release (Bupropion XL). The current case report presents a male patient developing motor and vocal tics with the use of bupropion XL.
Carroll, Thomas L; Smith, Libby J
This article presents a unique video of a laryngeal exam during which a vocal fold hemorrhage occurs. This patient had likely been suffering from intermittent vocal fold hemorrhages for the last decade due to a persistent vascular lesion and an underlying chronic cough.
Arya, Divya D.
This article offers information that will allow music educators to incorporate North Indian classical vocal music into a multicultural music education curriculum. Obstacles to teaching North Indian classical vocal music are acknowledged, including lack of familiarity with the cultural/structural elements and challenges in teaching ear training and…
Full Text Available A procedure for computing the optimal variation of the blades' pitch angle of an H-Darrieus wind turbine that maximizes its torque at given operational conditions is proposed and presented along with the results obtained on a 7 kW prototype. The CARDAAV code, based on the “Double-Multiple Streamtube” model developed by the first author, is used to determine the performances of the straight-bladed vertical axis wind turbine. This was coupled with a genetic algorithm optimizer. The azimuthal variation of the blades' pitch angle is modeled with an analytical function whose coefficients are used as variables in the optimization process. Two types of variations were considered for the pitch angle: a simple sinusoidal one and one which is more general, relating closely the blades' pitch to the local flow conditions along their circular path. A gain of almost 30% in the annual energy production was obtained with the polynomial optimal pitch control.
Yang, Chang Jo
In the present study the unsteady forces acting on the pitching foils such as a flat plate, NACA0010, NACA0020, NACA65-0910 and BTE have been measured by using a six-axis sensor in a circulating water tunnel at a low Reynolds number region. The unsteady characteristics of the dynamic drag and lift have been compared to the quasi-steady ones which are measured under the stationary condition. The pitching motion is available for keeping the lift higher after the separation occurs. Especially, the characteristics of the dynamic lift are quite different from the quasi-steady one at high pitching frequency regions. As the pitching frequency deceases, the amplitude of the dynamic lift becomes closer to the quasi-steady one. However, the phase remains different between the steady and unsteady conditions even at low pitching frequencies. On the other hand, the dynamic drag is governed strongly by the angle of attack
Xu, Chang; Tian, Qiangqiang; Shen, Wen Zhong
For the traditional simplified first-order pitch-control system model, it is difficult to describe a real dynamic characteristic of a variable pitch action system, thus a complete high order mathematical model has to be developed for the pitch control of wind turbine generation (WTG). In the paper...... controller parameters quickly; and the feed-forward controller for wind speed can improve dynamics of a pitch-control system; additionally the power controller can allow a wind turbine to have a constant power output as a wind speed is over the rated one. Compared with a conventional PID, the controller...... with ICPSO-PID algorithm has a smaller overshoot, a shorter tuning time and better robustness. The design method proposed in the paper can be applied in a practical electro-hydraulic pitch control system for WTG....
Full Text Available As the wind turbine size has been increasing and their mechanical components are built lighter, the reduction of the structural loads becomes a very important task of wind turbine control in addition to maximum wind power capture. In this paper, we present a separate set of collective and individual pitch control algorithms. Both pitch control algorithms use the LQR control technique with integral action (LQRI, and utilize Kalman filters to estimate system states and wind speed. Compared to previous works in this area, our pitch control algorithms can control rotor speed and blade bending moments at the same time to improve the trade-off between rotor speed regulation and load reduction, while both collective and individual pitch controls can be designed separately. Simulation results show that the proposed collective and individual pitch controllers achieve very good rotor speed regulation and significant reduction of blade bending moments.
Bottalico, Pasquale; Pelegrin Garcia, David
This work shows the results of a preliminary study about the determination of the optimal acoustical conditions for speakers in small classrooms. An experiment was carried out in a laboratory facility with 22 untrained talkers, who read a text passage from “Goldilocks” during two minutes under 13...... different acoustical conditions, that combined different kind of background noise and virtual classroom acoustics. Readings from the vocal fold vibrations were registered with an Ambulatory Phonation Monitor device. The speech signal from the talker in the center of the facility was picked up with a head...
Taitz, Alan; Shalom, Diego E.; Trevisan, Marcos A.
Speech requires programming the sequence of vocal gestures that produce the sounds of words. Here we explored the timing of this program by asking our participants to pronounce, as quickly as possible, a sequence of consonant-consonant-vowel (CCV) structures appearing on screen. We measured the delay between visual presentation and voice onset. In the case of plosive consonants, produced by sharp and well defined movements of the vocal tract, we found that delays are positively correlated with the duration of the transition between consonants. We then used a battery of statistical tests and mathematical vocal models to show that delays reflect the motor planning of CCVs and transitions are proxy indicators of the vocal effort needed to produce them. These results support that the effort required to produce the sequence of movements of a vocal gesture modulates the onset of the motor plan.
Full Text Available Paresis or paralysis of one or both vocal cords affects some significant aspects of a human life: breathing, swallowing and speech. The major causes for reduced mobility or even immobility are innervation damage, less often fixation of vocal cord or impaired mobility of crycoarytenoid joint. An injury of the superior or/and inferior laryngeal nerve can be a consequence of different medical procedures, tumor growth, trauma, infection, neurological disorders, radiation exposure, toxic damage, impaired circulation of the area or it is idiopathic. The symptoms are different in the case of unilateral and bilateral paresis of the vocal folds. They also depend on the cause for the impaired mobility. In the patients with unilateral vocal fold paresis, hoarseness and aspiration during swallowing are the leading symptoms. In the bilateral vocal fold paralysis, dyspnea prevails.
Dohn, Anders; Garza-Villarreal, Eduardo A.; Heaton, Pamela
Perfect pitch, also known as absolute pitch (AP), refers to the rare ability to identify or produce a musical tone correctly without the benefit of an external reference. AP is often considered to reflect musical giftedness, but it has also been associated with certain disabilities due to increas...
Smith, Simeon L; Titze, Ingo R
The fluid-structure interaction and energy transfer from respiratory airflow to self-sustained vocal fold oscillation continues to be a topic of interest in vocal fold research. Vocal fold vibration is driven by pressures on the vocal fold surface, which are determined by the shape of the glottis and the contact between vocal folds. Characterization of three-dimensional glottal shapes and contact patterns can lead to increased understanding of normal and abnormal physiology of the voice, as well as to development of improved vocal fold models, but a large inventory of shapes has not been directly studied previously. This study aimed to take an initial step toward characterizing vocal fold contact patterns systematically. Vocal fold motion and contact was modeled based on normal mode vibration, as it has been shown that vocal fold vibration can be almost entirely described by only the few lowest order vibrational modes. Symmetric and asymmetric combinations of the four lowest normal modes of vibration were superimposed on left and right vocal fold medial surfaces, for each of three prephonatory glottal configurations, according to a surface wave approach. Contact patterns were generated from the interaction of modal shapes at 16 normalized phases during the vibratory cycle. Eight major contact patterns were identified and characterized by the shape of the flow channel, with the following descriptors assigned: convergent, divergent, convergent-divergent, uniform, split, merged, island, and multichannel. Each of the contact patterns and its variation are described, and future work and applications are discussed. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Hackworth, Rhonda S.
The current study sought to determine the relationship among music teachers' length of teaching experience, specialty (vocal or instrumental), and ratings of behaviors and teaching activities related to vocal health. Participants (N = 379) were experienced (n = 208) and preservice (n = 171) music teachers, further categorized by specialty, either…
Fisher, Ryan A.; Scott, Julie K.
The purpose of this study was to examine the effects of vocal register use and age on the perceived vocal health of male elementary music teachers. Participants (N = 160) consisted of male elementary music teachers from two neighboring states in the south-central region of the United States. Participants responded to various demographic questions…
Plantinga, Judy; Trainor, Laurel J
We examined 6-month-old infants' long-term memory representations for the pitch of familiar melodies. Infants remembered the relative pitch of the melodies, but the absolute pitch was either not remembered or not a particularly salient attribute.
Nemr, Kátia; Amar, Ali; Abrahão, Marcio; Leite, Grazielle Capatto de Almeida; Köhle, Juliana; Santos, Alexandra de O; Correa, Luiz Artur Costa
As a result of technology evolution and development, methods of voice evaluation have changed both in medical and speech and language pathology practice. To relate the results of perceptual evaluation, acoustic analysis and medical evaluation in the diagnosis of vocal and/or laryngeal affections of the population with vocal complaint. Clinical prospective. 29 people that attended vocal health protection campaign were evaluated. They were submitted to perceptual evaluation (AFPA), acoustic analysis (AA), indirect laryngoscopy (LI) and telelaryngoscopy (TL). Correlations between medical and speech language pathology evaluation methods were established, verifying possible statistical signification with the application of Fischer Exact Test. There were statistically significant results in the correlation between AFPA and LI, AFPA and TL, LI and TL. This research study conducted in a vocal health protection campaign presented correlations between speech language pathology evaluation and perceptual evaluation and clinical evaluation, as well as between vocal affection and/or laryngeal medical exams.
Zliobaite, I.; Kamiran, F.; Calders, T.G.K.
Historical data used for supervised learning may contain discrimination. We study how to train classifiers on such data, so that they are discrimination free with respect to a given sensitive attribute, e.g., gender. Existing techniques that deal with this problem aim at removing all discrimination