Latency of the Auditory Evoked Neuromagnetic Field Components: Stimulus Dependence and Insights Toward Perception

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SummaryThis review will focus on investigations of the auditory evoked neuromagnetic field component, the M100, detectable in the magnetoencephalogram recorded during presentation of auditory stimuli, approximately 100 milliseconds after stimulus onset. In particular, the dependence of M100 latency on attributes of the stimulus, such as intensity, pitch and timbre will be discussed, along with evidence relating M100 latency observations to perceptual features of the stimuli. Comparison with investigation of the analogous electrical potential component, the N1, will be made. Parametric development of stimuli from pure tones through complex tones to speech elements will be made, allowing the influence of spectral pitch, virtual pitch and perceptual categorization to be delineated and suggesting implications for the role of such latency observations in the study of speech processing. The final section will deal with potential clinical applications offered by M100 latency measurements, as objective indices of normal and abnormal cortical processing.

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