Research & Publications

Auditory Cognitive Neuroscience Lab

Current Studies


A major theme of the research conducted in the lab is the study of auditory processing disorders, especially tinnitus. Tinnitus or ringing in the ears is often associated with hearing loss but not every person with hearing loss develops tinnitus. It is estimated that nearly 50 million Americans experience it. Dr. Husain has initiated MRI experiments to understand why some individuals with hearing loss develop tinnitus whereas others do not. The lab continues to study the neural bases of tinnitus using behavioral, modeling, and MRI tools. By using detailed audiological assessments and behavioral studies, we plan to link more subjective markers of tinnitus with a greater amount of objective data obtained using MRI. The computational modeling will be used to account for both the behavioral and MRI data. There is no cure for tinnitus, although there are therapies that alleviate it in some cases. The goal of my research is to contribute to a more desirable evaluation of current therapies and to the development of new treatments.

Auditory perception:

Dr. Husain has generated models of auditory perception in the cortex and has conducted fMRI studies to verify the models (Husain et al., 2004). The model processes simple non-speech sounds such as tonal sweeps. The model has been used to investigate the neural bases of auditory continuity illusion (Husain et al., 2005).


Categorization stands at the junction of perception and higher-level cognition. It allows us to investigate the next-step of processing beyond perception. Dr. Husain has conducted fMRI (Husain et al., 2006a) and functional connectivity studies (Husain et al., 2006b) into the categorization of simple speech (vowels, CV syllables) and non-speech sounds (tones, tonal sweeps). She has also investigated the categorization of sign language and other manual gestures by both Deaf signers and hearing non-sginers (manuscript submitted).

Language acquisition:

In the past Dr. Husain has studied the acquisition of phonemes of a second language by adult learners, specifically the acquisition of American English vowels by Spanish speakers. More recently, the lab is initiating studies to understand the acquisition of Mandarin Chinese tones by older adults.

Published Papers

Journal Articles & Conference Proceedings

Please visit PubMed or ResearchGate for the most updated list of journal articles:

The Role of Cognitive Control in Tinnitus and Its Relation to Speech-in-Noise Performance. Tai Y., Husain F.T. J Audiol Otol. 2019 Jan;23(1):1-7.

Dissociating tinnitus patients from healthy controls using resting-state cyclicity analysis and clustering. Zimmerman B.J., Abraham I., Schmidt S.A., Baryshnikov Y., Husain F.T. Netw Neurosci. 2018 Oct 1;3(1):67-89.

Expectations for Tinnitus Treatment and Outcomes: A Survey Study of Audiologists and Patients. Husain F.T., Gander P.E., Jansen J.N., Shen S. J Am Acad Audiol. 2018 Apr;29(4):313-336.

Right-Ear Advantage for Speech-in-Noise Recognition in Patients with Nonlateralized Tinnitus and Normal Hearing Sensitivity. Tai Y., Husain F.T. J Assoc Res Otolaryngol. 2018 Apr;19(2):211-221.

Changes in gray and white matter in subgroups within the tinnitus population. Schmidt S.A., Zimmerman B., Bido Medina R.O., Carpenter-Thompson J.R., Husain F.T. Brain Res. 2018 Jan 15;1679:64-74

Husain, F.T., Schmidt, S.A. (2014). Using resting state functional connectivity to unravel networks of tinnitus. Hearing Research.

Schmidt, S.A., Akrofi, K., Carpenter-Thompson, J.R., Husain, F.T. (2013). Default mode and dorsal attention networks exhibit differential functional connectivity in tinnitus and hearing loss. PLoS ONE.

Roberts, L.E., Husain, F.T., Eggermont, J.J. (2013). Role of Attention in the Generation and Modulation of Tinnitus. Neuroscience and Biobehavioral Reviews,37(8), 1754-1773.

Husain, F.T. (2013). Effect of tinnitus on DPOAEs varies with hearing loss. American Journal of Audiology, 22(1), 125-34.

Husain, F.T., Patkin, D., Kim, J., Braun, A.R., Horwitz, B. (2012). Dissociating neural correlates of meaningful emblems from meaningless gestures in deaf signers and hearing non-signers. Brain Research, 1478, 24-35.

Akrofi K, Sutton BP, Ouyang C, Husain FT. "Cluster Sizes in Interleaved Silent Steady State (ISSS) Imaging", Proceedings of the 33rd Annual IEEE EMBC, (2011) pp 7001-7004.

Husain FT, Medina RE, Davis CW, Szymko-Bennett Y, Simonyan K, Pajor NM, Horwitz B. “Neuroanatomical changes due to hearing loss and chronic tinnitus: a combined VBM and DTI study.” Brain Res. 2011 Jan 19;1369:74-88.

Husain FT, Pajor NM, Smith JF, Kim HJ, Rudy S, Zalewski C, Brewer C, Horwitz B. “Discrimination task reveals differences in neural bases of tinnitus and hearing impairment.” PLoS One. 2011;6(10):e26639.

Rong F, Holroyd T, Husain FT, Contreras-Vidal JL, Horwitz B. “Task-specific modulation of human auditory evoked response in a delayed-match-to-sample task.” Front Psychol. 2011;2:85.

Smith JF, Alexander GE, Chen K, Husain FT, Kim J, Pajor N, Horwitz B. “Imaging systems level consolidation of novel associate memories: a longitudinal neuroimaging study.” Neuroimage. 2010 Apr 1;50(2):826-36.

Husain FT, Patkin DJ, Thai-Van H, Braun AR, Horwitz B. “Distinguishing the processing of gestures from signs in deaf individuals: an fMRI study.” Brain Res. 2009 Jun 18;1276:140-50.

Wen S, Ulloa A, Husain F, Horwitz B, Contreras-Vidal JL. “Simulated neural dynamics of decision-making in an auditory delayed match-to-sample task.” Biol Cybern. 2008 Jul;99(1):15-27.

Husain FT. “Neural network models of tinnitus.” Prog Brain Res. 2007;166:125-40. Review.

Husain FT, Horwitz B. “Experimental-neuromodeling framework for understanding auditory object processing: integrating data across multiple scales.” J Physiol Paris. 2006 Jul-Sep;100(1-3):133-41.

Husain FT, McKinney CM, Horwitz B. “Frontal cortex functional connectivity changes during sound categorization.” Neuroreport. 2006 Apr 24;17(6):617-21.

Husain FT, Fromm SJ, Pursley RH, Hosey LA, Braun AR, Horwitz B. “Neural bases of categorization of simple speech and nonspeech sounds.” Hum Brain Mapp. 2006 Aug;27(8):636-51.

Husain FT, Lozito TP, Ulloa A, Horwitz B. “Investigating the neural basis of the auditory continuity illusion.” J Cogn Neurosci. 2005 Aug;17(8):1275-92.

Horwitz B, Warner B, Fitzer J, Tagamets MA, Husain FT, Long TW. “Investigating the neural basis for functional and effective connectivity. Application to fMRI.” Philos Trans R Soc Lond B Biol Sci. 2005 May 29;360(1457):1093-108.

Luo H, Husain FT, Horwitz B, Poeppel D. “Discrimination and categorization of speech and non-speech sounds in an MEG delayed-match-to-sample study.” Neuroimage. 2005 Oct 15;28(1):59-71.


Tinnitus and Hearing Loss

American Tinnitus Association
Tinnitus Research Initiative

Auditory Behavior and Neuroscience

Acoustical Society of America
Society for Neuroscience


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