CBBM Lecture "Macroscopic neural dynamics in support of auditory perception"

by Prof. Dr. Nathan Weisz,

Centre for Cognitive Neuroscience,

Division of Physiological Psychology,

University of Salzburg

will take place on Tuesday, February 14, 2017 from 17:15 to 18:15 hours in CBBM Building, EG, Room 50/51.

Host: Prof. Jonas Obleser
Institute of Psychology
University of Lübeck


How we reach coherent, meaningful auditory percepts from the noisy patterns caused at the level of our hearing receptors is an outstanding challenge in neuroscience. Apart from "low level" issues pertaining to processes directly elicited by an acoustic stimulus at the level of the basilar membrane, this question also involves "high-level" neural processes such as wide-spread networks enabling conscious access as well as top-down control by which processes such as attention or predictions could affect auditory processing. Within this talk I intend to present the background of my group’s research focus and present works that address following issues: 1) What are the (macroscopic) predispositions for a conscious auditory percept? 2) What are the signatures  of conscious access to presented auditory information? How do efferent processes influence auditory processing? Making progress on these issues has direct clinical implications for advancing also clinical issues such as understanding the neural mechanisms underlying tinnitus or factors influencing rehabilitation following cochlear implantation.



Nathan Weisz is Professor of Physiological Psychology and head of the MEG unit at the University of Salzburg. His group studies the role of brain oscillations on sensory processing with a special "fondness" for the auditory system. Methodologically the group employ in particular non-invasive electrophysiological tools such as MEG and EEG, sometimes flanked by neurostimulation methods (e.g. transcranial electrical stimulation). Nathan Weisz received his PhD from the University of Konstanz studying "neural correlates" of tinnitus. Following a Postdoc in Olivier Bertrands lab in Lyon between 2006 and 2008 he returned to Konstanz to start a junior research (Emmy Noether) group at the University of Konstanz. In 2012 he was appointed as Associate professor at the Center for Mind / Brain Sciences (CIMeC) at the University of Trento, where he was also put in charge of the MEG laboratory. Following a call, he moved in 2015 to work at the current position at the University of Salzburg.