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Understanding the mechanics of speech

Breakthrough Star Roozbeh Behroozmand studies speech processing in the brain

Roozbeh Behroozmand stands outside a building

Roozbeh Behroozmand is a neuroscientist who specializes in the brain’s ability to produce and process speech.

Laboratory leadership. Behroozmand established and directs the Speech Neuroscience Lab in the Arnold School of Public Health, which combines behavioral assessment with cutting-edge neurophysiological, neuroimaging and brain stimulation technologies. The lab uses that information to examine the neural bases of speech and its disorders in people with neurological conditions.

Approach and implications. The Speech Neuroscience Lab uses theoretical and data-driven approaches to investigate speech production mechanisms in typically developing adults and their related deficits in neurological populations with Parkinson’s disease and stroke. By understanding the underlying mechanisms of speech, Behroozmand is hopeful his research will inform diagnosis and clinical treatment of people with speech disorders.

On the horizon. The ultimate goal is to determine the source of sensory-motor deficits and promote the knowledge that leads to developing effective diagnostic and therapeutic methods for treating speech and related disorders.

“Movement is the most important way by which humans and animal species interact with their environment, and this critical function is supported by complex sensory-motor mechanisms in the nervous system. However, our understanding about the neural mechanisms that support speech sounds and articulation functions for speech production is relatively poor, and our knowledge about how neurological conditions that cause voice and speech motor disorders is mainly limited to describing the behavioral symptoms. These reasons have motivated me to study the neural bases of voice and speech production in the human brain with the goal of promoting our knowledge for developing novel treatment approaches for individuals with neurological conditions.”


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