Steven Eliades

Accomplishments

Dr. Steven Eliades received his B.S., M.D., and Ph.D. from Johns Hopkins School of Medicine. He completed his residency, also at Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, in 2013. Dr. Eliades was an intern and resident in the Department of Otorhinolaryngology until 2013 when he accepted a position as an Assistant Professor and Clinical Educator.

Research Activities

AUDITORY AND COMMUNICATION SYSTEMS LABORATORY

Dr. Eliades’ lab’s research aims to understand brain and behavioral mechanisms involved in auditory perception and vocal communication. They are interested in how different brain areas are involved in processing the sounds that we hear. They are particularly interested in how these different brain regions interact to help support vocal communication, a complex process that involves both production and perception of communication sounds. Such communication behaviors are important for the survival of a species, and understanding them can yield important insight into human communication including speech and language. They approach these problems using multiple methods, including research in both humans and vocal primates, combining neurophysiologic techniques with behavioral measurements, computational tools, and engineering approaches.

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Neural basis of auditory-self monitoring and vocal production (auditory-vocal interaction)

Humans continuously monitor the sound of our speech to ensure accurate vocal production, a process known as self-monitoring. However, the mechanisms of this process are not well understood. We use both human neurosurgical patients and animal models to investigate this process with the goal of improving speech learning and production in patients with hearing and communication difficulty.

Neural coding of communications sounds in complex, naturalistic environments

Although current understanding of neural coding of complex sounds is based upon responses to sounds delivered in carefully controlled conditions, it has recently become clear that behavioral context strongly modulates neural coding at the cortical level. The lab is studying the effects of context on sensory coding and vocal communication in complex, naturalistic social environments. These results have important implications for patients with developmental disabilities with impaired social vocal communication.

Cortical mechanisms of adaptation in human cortex

Adaptation, a reduction in neural activity with repetitive sound presentation, is thought to play a role in separating out novel or important sounds from background noise. In conjunction with collaborators in Neurology and Neurosurgery, the lab is investigating the interaction between adaptation and sound perception in human patients.

Cochlear implant-related cortical plasticity

Plasticity in the cortex is thought to affect performance using cochlear implants (CI), however, despite decades of clinical use, the long-term neural effects of CIs are not well understood. The lab is studying this plasticity using both patients and animal models with the goal of improving cochlear implants outcomes.

 

Dr. Eliades Official Research Website

http://www.med.upenn.edu/eliadeslab/