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Basal ganglia and cerebellum contributions to vocal emotion processing as revealed by high-resolution fMRI

Type of publication Peer-reviewed
Publikationsform Original article (peer-reviewed)
Author Ceravolo Leonardo, Frühholz Sascha, Pierce Jordan, Grandjean Didier, Péron Julie,
Project Neurocognitive Mechanisms of Auditory Perception - Challenging The Human Auditory System at The Limits of Hearing
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Original article (peer-reviewed)

Journal Scientific Reports
Volume (Issue) 11(1)
Page(s) 10645 - 10645
Title of proceedings Scientific Reports
DOI 10.1038/s41598-021-90222-6

Open Access

Type of Open Access Publisher (Gold Open Access)


AbstractUntil recently, brain networks underlying emotional voice prosody decoding and processing were focused on modulations in primary and secondary auditory, ventral frontal and prefrontal cortices, and the amygdala. Growing interest for a specific role of the basal ganglia and cerebellum was recently brought into the spotlight. In the present study, we aimed at characterizing the role of such subcortical brain regions in vocal emotion processing, at the level of both brain activation and functional and effective connectivity, using high resolution functional magnetic resonance imaging. Variance explained by low-level acoustic parameters (fundamental frequency, voice energy) was also modelled. Wholebrain data revealed expected contributions of the temporal and frontal cortices, basal ganglia and cerebellum to vocal emotion processing, while functional connectivity analyses highlighted correlations between basal ganglia and cerebellum, especially for angry voices. Seed-to-seed and seed-to-voxel effective connectivity revealed direct connections within the basal ganglia—especially between the putamen and external globus pallidus—and between the subthalamic nucleus and the cerebellum. Our results speak in favour of crucial contributions of the basal ganglia, especially the putamen, external globus pallidus and subthalamic nucleus, and several cerebellar lobules and nuclei for an efficient decoding of and response to vocal emotions.