Orolaryngeal Reflex Responses to Changes in Affective State Previous research has shown that the eye-blink startle reflex can be modulated by changes in affective state. The purpose of the present study was to determine whether human perioral and trigemino-laryngeal reflexes are sensitive to affective state changes. Impetus for this study comes from theories suggesting that orolaryngeal reflexes may ... Research Article
Research Article  |   October 01, 1995
Orolaryngeal Reflex Responses to Changes in Affective State
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Kristin K. Larson
    The Wilbur James Gould Voice Research Center, The Denver Center for the Performing Arts, Denver, CO
  • Shimon Sapir
    Communication Sciences and Disorders Department, Northwestern University, Evanston, IL
  • Contact author: Kristin K. Larson, PhD, The Wilbur James Gould Voice Research Center, Denver Center for the Performing Arts, 1245 Champa Street, Denver, CO 80204. E-mail: kristin@star.dcpa.org
Article Information
Speech, Voice & Prosody / Speech / Research Articles
Research Article   |   October 01, 1995
Orolaryngeal Reflex Responses to Changes in Affective State
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, October 1995, Vol. 38, 990-1000. doi:10.1044/jshr.3805.990
History: Received July 25, 1994 , Accepted March 24, 1995
 
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, October 1995, Vol. 38, 990-1000. doi:10.1044/jshr.3805.990
History: Received July 25, 1994; Accepted March 24, 1995

Previous research has shown that the eye-blink startle reflex can be modulated by changes in affective state. The purpose of the present study was to determine whether human perioral and trigemino-laryngeal reflexes are sensitive to affective state changes. Impetus for this study comes from theories suggesting that orolaryngeal reflexes may be modulated by affective states, and as such influence voice and speech production. Subjects were 24 classically trained female sopranos (21–35 years). Each produced a pursing lip posture while sustaining the continuant /m/ at 440 Hz and at a comfortable voice intensity level. Simultaneously subjects were shown an aversive, pleasant, or neutral slide (experimental conditions) or no slide (control condition) and received unanticipated, servo-controlled mechanical taps to the midline upper lip. Perioral responses were recorded bilaterally from the orbicularis oris inferior (OOI) muscle using surface electromyography (EMG). Trigemino-laryngeal responses were obtained indirectly by measuring changes in the voltage analog of the voice fundamental frequency (VFo). Reflex responses were detected by smoothing and signal-averaging the VFo and rectified EMG signals. Response magnitude and latency measures were compared across the affective valence and no-slide conditions. Statistically significant differences were not observed between conditions for the magnitude or temporal measures of either reflex. Significant differences, independent of affective valence, were observed between right and left early excitatory perioral response magnitudes. Differences between the startle and orolaryngeal reflexes, as well as the implications of these findings for speech motor control, are discussed.

Acknowledgments
This research was supported by the National Institutes of Health Grant #R29 DC00591-01A1 and Northwestern University Dissertation Year Grant. Special thanks are extended to Charles R. Larson, David P. Rutherford, and Steven Zecker for their insightful comments and suggestions. Also, Christopher Moore and an anonymous reviewer are gratefully acknowledged.
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