HOME >> BIOLOGY >> NEWS
Born with a love of speech

Do human newborns develop their preference for speech through in-utero eavesdropping, or is their penchant for speech innate? It's a bedevilling question to test, but one that's central to understanding the origins and dynamics of humans unique propensity for speech. Now a McGill University psychologist believes she's separated out the complicating effects of the uterine sound barrier. And the results, says Dr. Athena Vouloumanos, point to a genetic predilection for listening in on speech above other similar sounds.

"It's well established that neonates have a preference for speech above other sounds, but where does this come from? Is it something that's built in and there's something about the speech signal that they're tuned to listen to without the benefit of experience, or does it come from their prenatal experience in the womb? I think we've shown that there's an experience-independent component to newborns' preference for speech," says Dr. Vouloumanos, an Assistant Professor in McGill's Department of Psychology in Montreal, Canada.

She'll be presenting the findings of her latest research at the annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science in St. Louis, February 17th.

Neural and cochlear development is such that at about six months gestation the fetus begin to hear a range of frequencies. Thus, there's the possibility that newborns preferentially listen to speech because they're used to it from their in-utero tuning-in.

But, which speech sounds actually get through the uterine sound barrier to the fetus? According to Dr. Vouloumanos, the best evidence indicates that the uterine environment acts as a low-pass filter. This means that only very low, deep sounds those below about 400 Hertz make it to a fetus' ear.

Dr. Vouloumanos and colleagues developed a painstaking two part experimental procedure to separate out possible in-utero exposure from innate predisposition.

At the core of th
'"/>

Contact: Athena Vouloumanos
athena.vouloumanos@mcgill.ca
514-398-3856
Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council
17-Feb-2006


Page: 1 2 3

Related biology news :

1. Essential tones of music rooted in human speech
2. US hearing health, better telephone speech
3. Improved speech without vocal cords
4. Genetic cause of speech defect discovered
5. New research puts a fresh spin on current thinking of speech evolution in humans
6. Grasping metaphors: UC San Diego research ties brain area to figures of speech
7. Audiovisual integration of speech falters under competing demands for attention
8. New insight into brain and speech promises help for learning disabilities

Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:


(Date:5/16/2017)... TEANECK, N.J. , May 16, 2017  Veratad ... leading provider of online age and identity verification solutions, ... the K(NO)W Identity Conference 2017, May 15 thru May ... Ronald Regan Building and International Trade Center. ... across the globe and in today,s quickly evolving digital ...
(Date:4/19/2017)... 19, 2017 The global military ... is marked by the presence of several large global ... by five major players - 3M Cogent, NEC Corporation, ... for nearly 61% of the global military biometric market ... the global military biometrics market boast global presence, which ...
(Date:4/13/2017)... , April 13, 2017 According to a new ... Authentication, Identity Analytics, Identity Administration, and Authorization), Service, Authentication Type, Deployment Mode, ... IAM Market is expected to grow from USD 14.30 Billion in 2017 ... (CAGR) of 17.3%. ... MarketsandMarkets Logo ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:10/10/2017)... ... ... Dr. Bob Harman, founder and CEO of VetStem Biopharma, Inc. spent ... entitled “Stem Cells and Their Regenerative Powers,” was held on August 31st, 2017 ... joined by two human doctors: Peter B. Hanson, M.D., Chief of Orthopedic Surgery, Grossmont ...
(Date:10/10/2017)... ... October 10, 2017 , ... ... optimization firm for the life sciences and healthcare industries, announces a presentation by ... Francisco. , The presentation, “Automating GxP Validation for Agile Cloud Platforms,” will present ...
(Date:10/9/2017)... , ... October 09, 2017 , ... The award-winning American ... broadcast first quarter 2018. American Farmer airs Tuesdays at 8:30aET on RFD-TV. , ... faced with the challenge of how to continue to feed a growing nation. At ...
(Date:10/9/2017)... ... October 09, 2017 , ... ... October 5, 2017, in the medical journal, Epilepsia, Brain Sentinel’s SPEAC® System ... standard, video EEG, in detecting generalized tonic-clonic seizures (GTCS) using surface electromyography ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
Cached News: