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When a photograph can be heard: Vision activates the auditory cortex within 110ms

When a photograph can be heard: Vision activates the auditory cortex within 110ms

Authors: 
A.M. Proverbio, G.E. D'Aniello, R. Adorni & A. Zani
Year: 
2011
Journal: 
Scientific Reports
Abstract: 

As the makers of silent movies knew well, it is not necessary to provide an actual auditory stimulus to activate the sensation of sounds typically associated with what we are viewing. Thus, you could almost hear the neigh of Rodolfo Valentino\'s horse, even though the film was mute. Evidence is provided that the mere sight of a photograph associated with a sound can activate the associative auditory cortex. High-density ERPs were recorded in 15 participants while they viewed hundreds of perceptually matched images that were associated (or not) with a given sound. Sound stimuli were discriminated from non-sound stimuli as early as 110 ms. SwLORETA reconstructions showed common activation of ventral stream areas for both types of stimuli and of the associative temporal cortex, at the earliest stage, only for sound stimuli. The primary auditory cortex (BA41) was also activated by sound images after ~ 200 ms.

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