Processing Of Communication Calls In Guinea Pig Auditory Cortex


Processing Of Communication Calls In Guinea Pig Auditory Cortex


Grimsley J M S; Shanbhag S J; Palmer A R; Wallace M N


Plos One




Vocal communication is an important aspect of guinea pig behaviour and a large contributor to their acoustic environment. We postulated that some cortical areas have distinctive roles in processing conspecific calls. In order to test this hypothesis we presented exemplars from all ten of their main adult vocalizations to urethane anesthetised animals while recording from each of the eight areas of the auditory cortex. We demonstrate that the primary area (AI) and three adjacent auditory belt areas contain many units that give isomorphic responses to vocalizations. These are the ventrorostral belt (VRB), the transitional belt area (T) that is ventral to AI and the small area (area S) that is rostral to AI. Area VRB has a denser representation of cells that are better at discriminating among calls by using either a rate code or a temporal code than any other area. Furthermore, 10% of VRB cells responded to communication calls but did not respond to stimuli such as clicks, broadband noise or pure tones. Area S has a sparse distribution of call responsive cells that showed excellent temporal locking, 31% of which selectively responded to a single call. AI responded well to all vocalizations and was much more responsive to vocalizations than the adjacent dorsocaudal core area. Areas VRB, AI and S contained units with the highest levels of mutual information about call stimuli. Area T also responded well to some calls but seems to be specialized for low sound levels. The two dorsal belt areas are comparatively unresponsive to vocalizations and contain little information about the calls. AI projects to areas S, VRB and T, so there may be both rostral and ventral pathways for processing vocalizations in the guinea pig.


Acoustic noise; Action potentials; Anesthesia; Auditory cortex; Brain research; Broadband; Communication; conspecific; Auditory cortex; Cortex (temporal); cortical discrimination; Councils; functional specialization; Guinea pigs; Localization; Macaque; Medical research; Monkeys; neural representation; Neurobiology; neurons; Neurosciences; Ohio; purr call; rhesus-monkey; Saimiri; Science & Technology - Other Topics; Sciences: Comprehensive Works; single neurons; social vocalizations; Sound; species-specific vocalizations; squirrel-monkeys; Stimuli; United Kingdom--UK; Urethane; Vocalization; vocalizations


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Grimsley J M S; Shanbhag S J; Palmer A R; Wallace M N, “Processing Of Communication Calls In Guinea Pig Auditory Cortex,” NEOMED Bibliography Database, accessed December 5, 2023,