Stimulus categorization is influenced by oscillations in the brain. For example, we have shown that ongoing oscillatory phase biases identification of an ambiguous syllable that can either be perceived as /da/ or /ga/. This suggests that phase is a cue for the brain to determine syllable identity and this cue could be an element of the representation of these syllables. If so, brain activation patterns for /da/ should be more unique when the syllable is presented at the /da/ biasing (i.e. its "preferred") phase. To test this hypothesis we presented non-ambiguous /da/ and /ga/ syllables at either their preferred or non-preferred phase (using sensory entrainment) while measuring 7T fMRI. Using multivariate pattern analysis in auditory regions we show that syllable decoding performance is higher when syllables are presented at their preferred compared to their non-preferred phase. These results suggest that phase information increases the distinctiveness of /da/ and /ga/ brain activation patterns.
- Journal Article