Neural circuits underlying adaptation and learning in the perception of auditory space.
Bottom Line: Sound localization mechanisms are particularly plastic during development, when the monaural and binaural acoustic cues that form the basis for spatial hearing change in value as the body grows.Recent studies have shown that the mature brain retains a surprising capacity to relearn to localize sound in the presence of substantially altered auditory spatial cues.Through a combination of recording studies and methods for selectively manipulating the activity of specific neuronal populations, progress is now being made in identifying the cortical and subcortical circuits in the brain that are responsible for the dynamic coding of auditory spatial information.
Affiliation: Department of Physiology, Anatomy and Genetics, Sherrington Building, University of Oxford, Parks Road, Oxford, UK. firstname.lastname@example.orgShow MeSH
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Mentions: Although the mechanisms underlying the particularly accurate sound localization abilities of the barn owl show a number of specializations that have not been observed in other species, studies in mammals have confirmed the adaptive nature of sound localization during development. In particular, adult ferrets tend to exhibit largely normal sound localization behavior after being raised with a unilateral earplug (King et al., 2000; Fig. 2). The after-effects associated with earplug removal, however, are much less pronounced than those reported in barn owls, suggesting that the mechanisms underlying adaptation may differ across species.
Affiliation: Department of Physiology, Anatomy and Genetics, Sherrington Building, University of Oxford, Parks Road, Oxford, UK. email@example.com