Poster presented at the Society for Neuroscience 2015 conference, Chicago, IL, USA

Session Number: 438
Session Title: Human Cognition: Temporal Processing
Date and Time: Monday Oct 19, 2015 1:00 PM – 5:00 PM
Location: McCormick Place: Hall A
Abstract Control Number: 2938

Title: Beta oscillation reflects temporal attention for sensory prediction during auditory rhythmic entrainment

Authors: Andrew Chang, Alexandra Rice, Dan Bosnyak, Laurel J. Trainor

Keywords: Attention, Rhythm, Oscillation

Perceptual systems predict the “what” and “when” of upcoming sensory events. Neural oscillation studies show that both the phase of delta band oscillations (1 – 3 Hz) and the fluctuation of induced beta band power (15 – 30 Hz) in auditory cortex reflect the temporal prediction of the onset of the next beat during rhythmic entrainment: the phase and period of the delta frequency are reset by the external rhythm, and the induced beta power decreases following the onset of a beat and increases while anticipating the onset of the next beat. The delta-beta coupling strength also increases with the precision of temporal prediction. However, the associated psychological function of each oscillatory activity remains unclear. Following dynamic attending theory, we propose that the delta phase represents an oscillatory time frame, the induced beta power represents dynamic attentional modulation, and the delta-beta coupling strength represents temporal prediction. In Experiment 1, we recorded EEG while participants passively listened to isochronous auditory tone sequences (2 Hz), and we analyzed the source waveforms from bilateral primary auditory cortices. In different conditions, tones with deviant pitch occurred pseudorandomly on either 10% or 20% of trials, such that the deviant tone disrupted attentional modulation but not the oscillatory time frame. The results showed (1) both the delta phase and induced beta power entrained to the presentation rate when only standard tones were presented, consistent with previous studies, (2) the induced low-beta (15 – 20 Hz) power increased 200-300 ms following deviant tones, compared to standard tones, and the increase was larger when the deviant tone was less expected, (3) the delta phase was not modulated by deviant tones, and (4) delta-beta coupling strength decreased following deviant compared to standard tones. In Experiment 2, we replicated the results of Experiment 1 with a slower presentation rate (1.6 Hz). In Experiment 3, the deviant tones with 20% occurrence rate were presented in either predictable (every fifth tone) or unpredictable (pseudorandom) isochronous sequences. The preliminary results show that, in the predictable sequence, the induced high-beta (20 – 30 Hz) power increased 100 ms prior to the onset of deviant tones, compared to standard tones, which suggested that beta power reflects top-down anticipation for pitch as well as for timing. Together, these results suggest that the delta phase reflects an oscillatory time frame for predicting “when”, and that induced beta power reflects dynamic attention associated with shared sensory predictive mechanism in both “what” and “when” domains.