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P#71

Dichotic listening to unveil the processing of temporal information in sensorimotor synchronization

María Paula Caral

  • Bernal,
  • Argentina
  • María Paula Caral ¹
  • , Ignacio Spiousas ²
  • , Rodrigo Laje ²
  • 1 Laboratorio de Dinámica Sensomotora, Departamento de Ciencia y Tecnología, Universidad Nacional de Quilmes.
  • 2 Laboratorio de Dinámica Sensomotora, Departamento de Ciencia y Tecnología, Universidad Nacional de Quilmes - CONICET.

Sensorimotor synchronization (SMS) is the almost specifically human ability of synchronizing movements to an external, periodic sequence of stimuli and underlies much of music and dance. SMS belongs to millisecond timing, that is the processing of temporal information in the range of hundreds of milliseconds. Little is known about the brain mechanisms involved in this time range and in SMS in particular–for example, whether time processing takes place at the peripheral level, or at the sensory cortex, or at the motor cortex or it’s distributed across many regions. The simplest task to study SMS is paced finger tapping: a participant is presented with an auditory stimuli (a periodic sequence of brief tones at a fixed pitch) and is instructed to tap in synchrony with the sounds. In experiments where auditory feedback is added to the taps, both stimuli and feedback are sent to both ears. In this work we manipulate stimuli and feedback to direct them into either the same or different ears (dichotic listening) in order to determine whether the processing of the time interval between stimuli and feedback, key to the error correction process, is done at the peripheral level or at higher stages. Preliminary results are compatible with the hypothesis that the processing takes place at auditory cortex and/or higher stages. To tell if at least part of the processing could be done at peripheral level when the information is available on the same side we need to test more subjects.

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