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  • 1.
    Heldner, Mattias
    et al.
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Linguistics, Phonetics.
    Riad, Tomas
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Swedish Language and Multilingualism, Scandinavian Languages. Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Linguistics, Phonetics.
    Sundberg, Johan
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Linguistics.
    Włodarczak, Marcin
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Linguistics, Phonetics.
    Zora, Hatice
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Linguistics, Phonetics.
    Pride and prominence2021In: Working Papers in Linguistics: Proceedings of Fonetik 2021, 2021, p. 1-6Conference paper (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    Given the importance of the entire voice source in prominence expression, this paper aims to explore whether the word accent distinction can be defined by the voice quality dynamics moving beyond the tonal movements.To this end, a list of word accent pairs in Central Swedish were recorded and analysed based on a set of acoustic features extracted from the accelerometer signal. The results indicate that the tonal movements are indeed accompanied by the voice quality dynamics such as intensity, periodicity, harmonic richness and spectral tilt, and suggest that these parameters might contribute to the perception of one vs. two peaks associated with the word accent distinction in this regional variant of Swedish. These results, although based on limited data, are of crucial importance for the designation of voice quality variation as a prosodic feature per se.

  • 2. Persson, Jonas
    et al.
    Szalisznyó, Krisztina
    Antoni, Gunnar
    Wall, Anders
    Fällmar, David
    Zora, Hatice
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Linguistics.
    Bodén, Robert
    Phosphodiesterase 10A levels are related to striatal function in schizophrenia: a combined positron emission tomography and functional magnetic resonance imaging study2020In: European Archives of Psychiatry and Clinical Neuroscience, ISSN 0940-1334, E-ISSN 1433-8491, Vol. 270, no 4, p. 451-459Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Pharmacological inhibition of phosphodiesterase 10A (PDE10A) is being investigated as a treatment option in schizophrenia. PDE10A acts postsynaptically on striatal dopamine signaling by regulating neuronal excitability through its inhibition of cyclic adenosine monophosphate (cAMP), and we recently found it to be reduced in schizophrenia compared to controls. Here, this finding of reduced PDE10A in schizophrenia was followed up in the same sample to investigate the effect of reduced striatal PDE10A on the neural and behavioral function of striatal and downstream basal ganglia regions. A positron emission tomography (PET) scan with the PDE10A ligand [11C]Lu AE92686 was performed, followed by a 6 min resting-state magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scan in ten patients with schizophrenia. To assess the relationship between striatal function and neurophysiological and behavioral functioning, salience processing was assessed using a mismatch negativity paradigm, an auditory event-related electroencephalographic measure, episodic memory was assessed using the Rey auditory verbal learning test (RAVLT) and executive functioning using trail-making test B. Reduced striatal PDE10A was associated with increased amplitude of low-frequency fluctuations (ALFF) within the putamen and substantia nigra, respectively. Higher ALFF in the substantia nigra, in turn, was associated with lower episodic memory performance. The findings are in line with a role for PDE10A in striatal functioning, and suggest that reduced striatal PDE10A may contribute to cognitive symptoms in schizophrenia.

  • 3.
    Zora, Hatice
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Linguistics.
    Mapping prosody onto the lexicon: Memory traces for lexically specified prosodic information in the brain2016Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    Lexical access, the matching of auditory information onto lexical representations in the brain, is a crucial component of online language processing. To understand the nature of lexical access, it is important to identify the kind of acoustic information that is stored in the long-term memory and to study how the brain uses such information. This dissertation investigates the contribution of prosodic information to lexical access and examines language-specific processing mechanisms by studying three typologically distinct languages: English, Turkish, and Swedish. The main research objective is to demonstrate the activation of long-term memory traces for words on the sole basis of prosodic information and to test the accuracy of typological phonological descriptions suggested in the literature by studying electrophysiological measurements of brain activation. A secondary research objective is to evaluate three distinct electrophysiological recording systems. The dissertation is based on three papers, each examining neural responses to prosodic changes in one of the three languages with a different recording system. The first two papers deal directly with the interplay between prosody and the lexicon, and investigate whether prosodic changes activate memory traces associated with segmentally identical but prosodically different words; the third paper introduces morphology to this process and investigates whether prosodic changes activate memory traces associated with potential lexical derivations. Neural responses demonstrate that prosodic information indeed activates memory traces associated with words and their potential derivations without any given context. Strongly connected neural networks are argued to guarantee neural activation and implementation of long-term memory traces. Regardless of differences in prosodic typology, all languages exploit prosodic information for lexical processing, although to different extents. The amount of neural activation elicited by a particular piece of prosodic information is positively correlated with the strength of its lexical representation in the brain, which is called lexical specification. This dissertation could serve as a first step towards building an electrophysiological-perceptual taxonomy of prosodic processing based on lexical specification.

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  • 4.
    Zora, Hatice
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Linguistics, Phonetics.
    Suprasegmental features in spoken language processing2013Conference paper (Other academic)
  • 5.
    Zora, Hatice
    et al.
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Linguistics, Phonetics.
    Heldner, Mattias
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Linguistics, Phonetics.
    Schwarz, Iris-Corinna
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Linguistics, Phonetics.
    Perceptual correlates of Turkish word stress and their contribution to automatic lexical access: Evidence from early ERP components2016In: Frontiers in Neuroscience, ISSN 1662-4548, E-ISSN 1662-453X, Vol. 10, article id 7Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Perceptual correlates of Turkish word stress and their contribution to lexical access were studied using the mismatch negativity (MMN) component in event-related potentials (ERPs). The MMN was expected to indicate if segmentally identical Turkish words were distinguished on the sole basis of prosodic features such as fundamental frequency (f0), spectral emphasis (SE) and duration. The salience of these features in lexical access was expected to be reflected in the amplitude of MMN responses. In a multi-deviant oddball paradigm, neural responses to changes in f0, SE, and duration individually, as well as to all three features combined, were recorded for words and pseudowords presented to 14 native speakers of Turkish. The word and pseudoword contrast was used to differentiate language-related effects from acoustic-change effects on the neural responses. First and in line with previous findings, the overall MMN was maximal over frontal and central scalp locations. Second, changes in prosodic features elicited neural responses both in words and pseudowords, confirming the brain’s automatic response to any change in auditory input. However, there were processing differences between the prosodic features, most significantly in f0: While f0 manipulation elicited a slightly right-lateralized frontally-maximal MMN in words, it elicited a frontal P3a in pseudowords. Considering that P3a is associated with involuntary allocation of attention to salient changes, the manipulations of f0 in the absence of lexical processing lead to an intentional evaluation of pitch change. f0 is therefore claimed to be lexically specified in Turkish. Rather than combined features, individual prosodic features differentiate language-related effects from acoustic-change effects. The present study confirms that segmentally identical words can be distinguished on the basis of prosodic information alone, and establishes the salience of f0 in lexical access.

  • 6.
    Zora, Hatice
    et al.
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Linguistics, Phonetics.
    Magnusson, Anna
    Rudner, Mary
    MMN signatures of symbolic and affective prosody2018Conference paper (Other academic)
  • 7.
    Zora, Hatice
    et al.
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Linguistics, Phonetics.
    Magnusson, Anna
    Rudner, Mary
    The effect of visual deprivation on prosodic processing2017Conference paper (Refereed)
  • 8.
    Zora, Hatice
    et al.
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Linguistics, Phonetics.
    Riad, Tomas
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Swedish Language and Multilingualism, Scandinavian Languages.
    Schwarz, Iris-Corinna
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Linguistics, Phonetics.
    Heldner, Mattias
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Linguistics, Phonetics.
    Lexical Specification of Prosodic Information in Swedish: Evidence from Mismatch Negativity2016In: Frontiers in Neuroscience, ISSN 1662-4548, E-ISSN 1662-453X, Vol. 10, article id 533Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Like that of many other Germanic languages, the stress system of Swedish has mainly undergone phonological analysis. Recently, however, researchers have begun to recognize the central role of morphology in these systems. Similar to the lexical specification of tonal accent, the Swedish stress system is claimed to be morphologically determined and morphemes are thus categorized as prosodically specified and prosodically unspecified. Prosodically specified morphemes bear stress information as part of their lexical representations and are classified as tonic (i.e., lexically stressed), pretonic and posttonic, whereas prosodically unspecified morphemes receive stress through a phonological rule that is right-edge oriented, but is sensitive to prosodic specification at that edge. The presence of prosodic specification is inferred from vowel quality and vowel quantity; if stress moves elsewhere, vowel quality and quantity change radically in phonologically stressed morphemes, whereas traces of stress remain in lexically stressed morphemes. The present study is the first to investigate whether stress is a lexical property of Swedish morphemes by comparing mismatch negativity (MMN) responses to vowel quality and quantity changes in phonologically stressed and lexically stressed words. In a passive oddball paradigm, 15 native speakers of Swedish were presented with standards and deviants, which differed from the standards in formant frequency and duration. Given that vowel quality and quantity changes are associated with morphological derivations only in phonologically stressed words, MMN responses are expected to be greater in phonologically stressed words than in lexically stressed words that lack such an association. The results indicated that the processing differences between phonologically and lexically stressed words were reflected in the amplitude and topography of MMN responses. Confirming the expectation, MMN amplitude was greater for the phonologically stressed word than for the lexically stressed word and showed a more widespread topographic distribution. The brain did not only detect vowel quality and quantity changes but also used them to activate memory traces associated with derivations. The present study therefore implies that morphology is directly involved in the Swedish stress system and that changes in phonological shape due to stress shift cue upcoming stress and potential addition of a morpheme.

  • 9.
    Zora, Hatice
    et al.
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Linguistics, Phonetics.
    Riad, Tomas
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Swedish Language and Multilingualism, Scandinavian Languages.
    Ylinen, Sari
    Prosodically controlled derivations in the mental lexicon2019In: Journal of Neurolinguistics, ISSN 0911-6044, E-ISSN 1873-8052, Vol. 52, article id 100856Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Swedish morphemes are classified as prosodically specified or prosodically unspecified, depending on lexical or phonological stress, respectively. Here, we investigate the allomorphy of the suffix -(i)sk, which indicates the distinction between lexical and phonological stress; if attached to a lexically stressed morpheme, it takes a non-syllabic form (-sk), whereas if attached to a phonologically stressed morpheme, an epenthetic vowel is inserted (-isk). Using mismatch negativity (MMN), we explored the neural processing of this allomorphy across lexically stressed and phonologically stressed morphemes. In an oddball paradigm, participants were occasionally presented with congruent and incongruent derivations, created by the suffix -(i)sk, within the repetitive presentation of their monomorphemic stems. The results indicated that the congruent derivation of the lexically stressed stem elicited a larger MMN than the incongruent sequences of the same stem and the derivational suffix, whereas after the phonologically stressed stem a non-significant tendency towards an opposite pattern was observed. We argue that the significant MMN response to the congruent derivation in the lexical stress condition is in line with lexical MMN, indicating a holistic processing of the sequence of lexically stressed stem and derivational suffix. The enhanced MMN response to the incongruent derivation in the phonological stress condition, on the other hand, is suggested to reflect combinatorial processing of the sequence of phonologically stressed stem and derivational suffix. These findings bring a new aspect to the dual-system approach to neural processing of morphologically complex words, namely the specification of word stress.

  • 10.
    Zora, Hatice
    et al.
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Linguistics, Phonetics.
    Riad, Tomas
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Linguistics, Phonetics.
    Ylinen, Sari
    Prosodically controlled suffix alternation in the mental lexicon2018Conference paper (Refereed)
  • 11.
    Zora, Hatice
    et al.
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Linguistics.
    Riad, Tomas
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Swedish Language and Multilingualism.
    Ylinen, Sari
    Csépe, Valéria
    Phonological Variations Are Compensated at the Lexical Level: Evidence From Auditory Neural Activity2021In: Frontiers in Human Neuroscience, E-ISSN 1662-5161, Vol. 15, article id 622904Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Dealing with phonological variations is important for speech processing. This article addresses whether phonological variations introduced by assimilatory processes are compensated for at the pre-lexical or lexical level, and whether the nature of variation and the phonological context influence this process. To this end, Swedish nasal regressive place assimilation was investigated using the mismatch negativity (MMN) component. In nasal regressive assimilation, the coronal nasal assimilates to the place of articulation of a following segment, most clearly with a velar or labial place of articulation, as in utan mej “without me” > [ʉːtam mɛjː]. In a passive auditory oddball paradigm, 15 Swedish speakers were presented with Swedish phrases with attested and unattested phonological variations and contexts for nasal assimilation. Attested variations – a coronal-to-labial change as in utan “without” > [ʉːtam] – were contrasted with unattested variations – a labial-to-coronal change as in utom “except” > ∗[ʉːtɔn] – in appropriate and inappropriate contexts created by mej “me” [mɛjː] and dej “you” [dɛjː]. Given that the MMN amplitude depends on the degree of variation between two stimuli, the MMN responses were expected to indicate to what extent the distance between variants was tolerated by the perceptual system. Since the MMN response reflects not only low-level acoustic processing but also higher-level linguistic processes, the results were predicted to indicate whether listeners process assimilation at the pre-lexical and lexical levels. The results indicated no significant interactions across variations, suggesting that variations in phonological forms do not incur any cost in lexical retrieval; hence such variation is compensated for at the lexical level. However, since the MMN response reached significance only for a labial-to-coronal change in a labial context and for a coronal-to-labial change in a coronal context, the compensation might have been influenced by the nature of variation and the phonological context. It is therefore concluded that while assimilation is compensated for at the lexical level, there is also some influence from pre-lexical processing. The present results reveal not only signal-based perception of phonological units, but also higher-level lexical processing, and are thus able to reconcile the bottom-up and top-down models of speech processing.

  • 12.
    Zora, Hatice
    et al.
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Linguistics, Phonetics.
    Rudner, Mary
    Magnusson, Anna
    The role of affective and linguistic prosody in the cognitive emotional appraisal of language2019In: Abstract book: Fifth International Conference on Cognitive Hearing Science for Communication, 2019, p. 174-174, article id 60Conference paper (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Prosody offers a unified expression domain for affective and linguistic communication. Affective prosody (e.g., anger vocalization) reflects pre-cognitive processes, whereas linguistic prosody (e.g., lexical tone) is an acquired cognitive skill. In the present study, we explored the interplay between subcortical affective prosody and cortical linguistic cues during emotional appraisal of speech using stereotyped electroencephalography (EEG) responses. We hypothesized that concurrent affective and linguistic prosody with the same valence will evoke a late positive frontal response, reflecting emotional appraisal supported by complex cognitive processing in frontal cortical areas. Using an auditory oddball paradigm, neural responses to a spoken pair of Swedish words that differed in emotional content due to linguistic prosody were investigated as pronounced with an angry and a neutral voice. The results indicate that when co-occurring, affective and linguistic prosody with the same valence elicit a unique late positive response in the frontal region that is distinct from the neural responses of affective and linguistic prosody alone. This study provides experimental evidence that both affective and linguistic prosody contribute synergistically to the cognitive emotional appraisal of language, and highlights the significance of pre-cognitive affective prosody in language processing, having important implications for both language learning and learning through language.

  • 13.
    Zora, Hatice
    et al.
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Linguistics.
    Rudner, Mary
    Magnusson, Anna K. Montell
    Concurrent affective and linguistic prosody with the same emotional valence elicits a late positive ERP response2020In: European Journal of Neuroscience, ISSN 0953-816X, E-ISSN 1460-9568, Vol. 51, p. 2236-2249Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Change in linguistic prosody generates a mismatch negativity response (MMN), indicating neural representation of linguistic prosody, while change in affective prosody generates a positive response (P3a), reflecting its motivational salience. However, the neural response to concurrent affective and linguistic prosody is unknown. The present paper investigates the integration of these two prosodic features in the brain by examining the neural response to separate and concurrent processing by electroencephalography (EEG). A spoken pair of Swedish words-['fa:s epsilon n] phase and ['fa:s epsilon n] damn-that differed in emotional semantics due to linguistic prosody was presented to 16 subjects in an angry and neutral affective prosody using a passive auditory oddball paradigm. Acoustically matched pseudowords['va:s epsilon m] and ['va:s epsilon m]-were used as controls. Following the constructionist concept of emotions, accentuating the conceptualization of emotions based on language, it was hypothesized that concurrent affective and linguistic prosody with the same valence-angry ['fa:s epsilon n] damn-would elicit a unique late EEG signature, reflecting the temporal integration of affective voice with emotional semantics of prosodic origin. In accordance, linguistic prosody elicited an MMN at 300-350 ms, and affective prosody evoked a P3a at 350-400 ms, irrespective of semantics. Beyond these responses, concurrent affective and linguistic prosody evoked a late positive component (LPC) at 820-870 ms in frontal areas, indicating the conceptualization of affective prosody based on linguistic prosody. This study provides evidence that the brain does not only distinguish between these two functions of prosody but also integrates them based on language and experience.

  • 14.
    Zora, Hatice
    et al.
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Linguistics, Phonetics.
    Schwarz, Iris-Corinna
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Linguistics, Phonetics.
    Heldner, Mattias
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Linguistics, Phonetics.
    Neural correlates of lexical stress: mismatch negativity reflects fundamental frequency and intensity2015In: NeuroReport, ISSN 0959-4965, E-ISSN 1473-558X, Vol. 26, no 13, p. 791-796Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Neural correlates of lexical stress were studied using the mismatch negativity (MMN) component in event-related potentials. The MMN responses were expected to reveal the encoding of stress information into long-term memory and the contributions of prosodic features such as fundamental frequency (F0) and intensity toward lexical access. In a passive oddball paradigm, neural responses to changes in F0, intensity, and in both features together were recorded for words and pseudowords. The findings showed significant differences not only between words and pseudowords but also between prosodic features. Early processing of prosodic information in words was indexed by an intensity-related MMN and an F0-related P200. These effects were stable at right-anterior and mid-anterior regions. At a later latency, MMN responses were recorded for both words and pseudowords at the mid-anterior and posterior regions. The P200 effect observed for F0 at the early latency for words developed into an MMN response. Intensity elicited smaller MMN for pseudowords than for words. Moreover, a larger brain area was recruited for the processing of words than for the processing of pseudowords. These findings suggest earlier and higher sensitivity to prosodic changes in words than in pseudowords, reflecting a language-related process. The present study, therefore, not only establishes neural correlates of lexical stress but also confirms the presence of long-term memory traces for prosodic information in the brain.

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