The long-term aim is a better understanding of the mechanisms that are responsible for poor hearing in noise by listeners with sensorineural hearing loss.
Aim 1 will investigate the hypothesis that the poor performance of hearing-impaired listeners in fluctuating noise is due to an interaction between poor frequency selectivity and reduced speech redundancy.
The aim will also investigate a competing hypothesis that such poor performance is due to poor encoding of temporal fine structure cues.
Aim 2 investigates the combination of speech or temporal envelope across frequency. We test the hypothesis that poor performance of hearing-impaired listeners in the combination of such information is related to poor frequency selectivity rather than to an essential deficit in processes that are related to the combination of information across different frequency channels.
Aim 3 explores issues related to the relationship between frequency selectivity and temporal processing in both hearing-impaired and normal-hearing listeners. One series of experiments in this aim tests the hypothesis that hearing-impaired listeners will show better than normal temporal processing in paradigms where it is more advantageous to base performance on the output of a single, broad auditory filter than to combine information across multiple, narrow auditory filters. In contrast, a second series of experiments uses a novel monaural envelope correlation perception paradigm where it appears that normal-hearing listeners are able to achieve acute temporal processing by combining information across multiple, narrow auditory filters. It is hypothesized that hearing-impaired listeners will not perform better than normal in these conditions, but, instead, may well show a performance deficit. Psychoacoustic studies will use standard, adaptive testing techniques, and speech studies will use a combination of adaptive and fixed block methods. Data will be analyzed using analysis of variance and correlation procedures. The proposed work relates to public health in that the data from the studies on hearing loss will provide information about the effect of sensorineural hearing loss on the ability to understand speech in quiet and in noise. The studies on normal hearing investigate phenomena that are likely to be relevant to the ability of normal and hearing-impaired listeners to process complex sounds such as speech. This project is directly relevant to public health in that it investigates possible forms of hearing disability in adults who have sensorineural hearing loss. The project also investigates hearing processes that underlie the ability to hear signals in background noise. This is relevant to public health because poor hearing in background noise is the most common complaint of patients with sensorineural hearing loss.

Public Health Relevance

This project is directly relevant to public health in that it investigates possible forms of hearing disability in adults who have sensori-neural hearing loss. The project also investigates hearing processes that underlie the ability to hear signals in background noise. This is relevant to public health because poor hearing in background noise is the most common complaint of patients with sensori-neural hearing loss.

Agency
National Institute of Health (NIH)
Institute
National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders (NIDCD)
Type
Research Project (R01)
Project #
5R01DC000418-26
Application #
8279367
Study Section
Auditory System Study Section (AUD)
Program Officer
Donahue, Amy
Project Start
1986-09-01
Project End
2014-07-31
Budget Start
2012-08-01
Budget End
2013-07-31
Support Year
26
Fiscal Year
2012
Total Cost
$301,392
Indirect Cost
$97,749
Name
University of North Carolina Chapel Hill
Department
Otolaryngology
Type
Schools of Medicine
DUNS #
608195277
City
Chapel Hill
State
NC
Country
United States
Zip Code
27599
Hall 3rd, Joseph W; Buss, Emily; Grose, John H (2013) Wideband monaural envelope correlation perception. Adv Exp Med Biol 787:383-90
Buss, Emily; Grose, John H; Hall, Joseph W (2012) Frequency discrimination under conditions of comodulation masking release (L). J Acoust Soc Am 131:2557-60
Buss, Emily; Whittle, Lisa N; Grose, John H et al. (2009) Masking release for words in amplitude-modulated noise as a function of modulation rate and task. J Acoust Soc Am 126:269-80
Hall 3rd, Joseph W; Buss, Emily; Grose, John H (2008) Spectral integration of speech bands in normal-hearing and hearing-impaired listeners. J Acoust Soc Am 124:1105-15
Blanks, Deidra A; Buss, Emily; Grose, John H et al. (2008) Interaural time discrimination of envelopes carried on high-frequency tones as a function of level and interaural carrier mismatch. Ear Hear 29:674-83
Hall 3rd, Joseph W; Buss, Emily; Grose, John H (2008) Comodulation detection differences in children and adults. J Acoust Soc Am 123:2213-9
Hall 3rd, Joseph W; Buss, Emily; Grose, John H (2008) The effect of hearing impairment on the identification of speech that is modulated synchronously or asynchronously across frequency. J Acoust Soc Am 123:955-62
Buss, Emily; Hall 3rd, Joseph W (2008) Factors contributing to comodulation masking release with dichotic maskers. J Acoust Soc Am 124:1905-8
McNorgan, Chris; Kotack, Rachel A; Meehan, Deborah C et al. (2007) Feature-feature causal relations and statistical co-occurrences in object concepts. Mem Cognit 35:418-31
Cree, George S; McNorgan, Chris; McRae, Ken (2006) Distinctive features hold a privileged status in the computation of word meaning: Implications for theories of semantic memory. J Exp Psychol Learn Mem Cogn 32:643-58

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