Publication:
A multimodal interface for speech perception: the role of the left superior temporal sulcus in social cognition and autism

Date

2024

Authors

Kausel, Leonie
Michon, Maëva
Aboitiz, Francisco

Journal Title

Journal ISSN

Volume Title

Publisher

Research Projects

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Journal Issue

Abstract

Multimodal integration is crucial for human interaction, in particular for social communication, which relies on integrating information from various sensory modalities. Recently a third visual pathway specialized in social perception was proposed, which includes the right superior temporal sulcus (STS) playing a key role in processing socially relevant cues and high-level social perception. Importantly, it has also recently been proposed that the left STS contributes to audiovisual integration of speech processing. In this article, we propose that brain areas along the right STS that support multimodal integration for social perception and cognition can be considered homologs to those in the left, language-dominant hemisphere, sustaining multimodal integration of speech and semantic concepts fundamental for social communication. Emphasizing the significance of the left STS in multimodal integration and associated processes such as multimodal attention to socially relevant stimuli, we underscore its potential relevance in comprehending neurodevelopmental conditions characterized by challenges in social communication such as autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Further research into this left lateral processing stream holds the promise of enhancing our understanding of social communication in both typical development and ASD, which may lead to more effective interventions that could improve the quality of life for individuals with atypical neurodevelopment.

Description

Keywords

Audiovisual integration, Autism, Social communication, Superior temporal sulcus

Citation

Leonie Kausel, Maëva Michon, Patricia Soto-Icaza, Francisco Aboitiz, A multimodal interface for speech perception: the role of the left superior temporal sulcus in social cognition and autism, Cerebral Cortex, Volume 34, Issue 13, May 2024, Pages 84–93, https://doi.org/10.1093/cercor/bhae066