Temporal characteristics of auditory sensory memory: neuromagnetic evidence

Psychophysiology. 1997 May;34(3):308-16. doi: 10.1111/j.1469-8986.1997.tb02401.x.


We investigated the temporal dependencies of N100 m, the most prominent deflection of the auditory evoked response, using whole-head neuromagnetic recordings. Stimuli were presented singly or in pairs (tones in the pair were separated by 210 ms) at interstimulus intervals (ISIs) of 0.6-8.1 s. N100 m to single stimuli and to the first tone of the pair had similar temporal recovery functions, plateauing at ISIs of 6 s. N100 m to the second tone in the pair, which was smaller than that to the first except with short ISIs, plateaued with ISIs of about 4 s. Source analysis revealed that the N100 m could be decomposed into two sources separated by about 1 cm on the supratemporal plane. The recovery function of the posterior source was not affected by stimulus presentation, whereas that of the anterior source was. Activity in the anterior area appears to reflect the effects of temporal integration. We relate these results to auditory sensory memory.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Acoustic Stimulation
  • Adult
  • Evoked Potentials, Auditory / physiology*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Magnetics*
  • Male
  • Memory / physiology*
  • Middle Aged