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Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/1807/24682

Title: The Neural Correlates of Auditory Processing in Adults and Children who Stutter
Authors: Beal, Deryk Scott
Advisor: De Nil, Luc F.
Department: Speech-Language Pathology
Keywords: developmental stuttering
speech production
auditory processing
magnetoencephalography (MEG)
magnetic resonance imaging (MRI)
voxel-based morphometry (VBM)
motor movement
Issue Date: 5-Aug-2010
Abstract: This dissertation is comprised of four studies investigating the hypothesis that adults and children who stutter differ from their same-age fluent peers in the neuroanatomy and neurophysiology underlying auditory speech processing. It has been consistently reported that adults who stutter demonstrate unique functional neural activation patterns during speech production, including reduced auditory activation, relative to nonstutterers. The extent to which these functional differences are accompanied by abnormal morphology of the brain in stutterers is unclear. The first study in this dissertation examined the neuroanatomical differences in speech-related cortex between adults who do and do not stutter using magnetic resonance imaging and voxel-based morphometry analyses. Adults who stutter were found to have localized grey matter volume increases in auditory and motor speech related cortex. The second study extended this line of research to children who stutter, who were found to have localized grey matter volume decreases in motor speech related cortex. Together, these studies suggest an abnormal trajectory of regional grey matter development in motor speech cortex of people who stutter. The last two studies investigated the mechanism underlying the repeated findings of reduced auditory activation during speech in people who stutter in more detail. Magnetoencephalography was used to investigate the hypothesis that people who stutter have increased speech induced suppression of early evoked auditory responses. Adults and children who stutter demonstrated typical levels of speech induced suppression relative to fluent peers. However, adults and children who stutter showed differences from peers in the timing of cortical auditory responses. Taken together, the studies demonstrate structural and functional abnormalities in brain regions related to auditory processing and point to the possibility that people who stutter have difficulty forming the neural representations of speech sounds necessary for fluent speech production.
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/1807/24682
Appears in Collections:Doctoral
Department of Speech-Language Pathology - Doctoral theses

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