Multisensory learning between odor and sound enhances beta oscillations

Abstract : Multisensory interactions are essential to make sense of the environment by transforming the mosaic of sensory inputs received by the organism into a unified perception. Brain rhythms allow coherent processing within areas or between distant brain regions and could thus be instrumental in functionally connecting remote brain areas in the context of multisensory interactions. Still, odor and sound processing relate to two sensory systems with specific anatomofunctional characteristics. How does the brain handle their association? Rats were challenged to discriminate between unisensory stimulation (odor or sound) and the multisensory combination of both. During learning, we observed a progressive establishment of high power beta oscillations (15–35 Hz) spanning on the olfactory bulb, the piriform cortex and the perirhinal cortex, but not the primary auditory cortex. In the piriform cortex, beta oscillations power was higher in the multisensory condition compared to the presentation of the odor alone. Furthermore, in the olfactory structures, the sound alone was able to elicit a beta oscillatory response. These findings emphasize the functional differences between olfactory and auditory cortices and reveal that beta oscillations contribute to the memory formation of the multisensory association.
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Submitted on : Tuesday, August 13, 2019 - 10:10:48 PM
Last modification on : Thursday, August 15, 2019 - 1:09:40 AM

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A. Gnaedinger, H. Gurden, B. Gourévitch, C. Martin. Multisensory learning between odor and sound enhances beta oscillations. Sci.Rep., 2019, 9 (1), pp.11236. ⟨10.1038/s41598-019-47503-y⟩. ⟨hal-02266318⟩

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