Mammals with intact hearing in both ears can readily disentangle and locate sound sources in busy environments. Conventional computer programs on the other hand are not so successful.  Mammals excel at such tasks as they have evolved elaborate neuronal coding or central auditory processing strategies to identify, attend to and navigate towards sounds in complex scenes.  Central auditory processing deficits are a symptom manifested in a variety of developmental disorders including specific language impairment, dyslexia and autism.  My  research goal is to understand the central auditory processes and to develop clinical tools for monitoring their integrity.  My laboratory characterizes encoding at the single neuron and cellular network level with combined optical imaging, multi-lamina neural recording, anatomical, and systems theoretic approaches.  Aside from developing academic theories of encoding we aim to develop computational strategies for speech recognition systems, preprocessing for prosthetic hearing devices, and diagnostic tools for distinguishing peripheral and central auditory processing disorders.
The Read Laboratory
Research Overview