Listening to speech recruits a network of fronto-temporo-parietal cortical areas. Classical models consider anterior, motor, sites involved in speech production whereas posterior sites involved in comprehension. This functional segregation is more and more challenged by action-perception theories suggesting that brain circuits for speech articulation and speech perception are functionally interdependent. Recent studies report that speech listening elicits motor activities analogous to production. However, the motor system could be crucially recruited only under certain conditions that make speech discrimination hard. Here, by using event-related double-pulse transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) on lips and tongue motor areas, we show data suggesting that the motor system may play a role in noisy, but crucially not in noise-free environments, for the discrimination of speech signals.
- Motor system
- Motor theory of speech perception
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Clinical Neurology
- Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
- Developmental and Educational Psychology