Kenny Vaden. I work with Dr. Mark Eckert in the Hearing Research Program at the Medical University of South Carolina, in Charleston. I completed my Ph.D. studies in Psychology from the Department of Cognitive Sciences at UC Irvine in 2009. My dissertation research focused on the cortical substrates of speech recognition, advised by Dr. Greg Hickok, which involved developing a lexical database (IPhOD) and conducting behavioral and fMRI experiments on speech recognition. My postdoctoral training builds on my graduate work with a broader focus on how speech recognition and neural networks change with increasing age. Although our typical experiences with speech communication seem simple and effortless, changes in noise level, hearing loss, age, and brain structure or function can impact the difficulty of speech recognition - particularly for older adults. This difficulty may reflect declines in neural systems that must work together to integrate information in speech and access meaning.

Online Tools

Irvine Phonotactic Online Dictionary. The IPhOD is a large collection of English words and pseudowords that I developed at UC Irvine for research on speech perception and production. The IPhOD allows researchers to select items for experiments, based on measures related to speech sounds or to answer questions such as: Which contains more unusual sound-sequences, dog or cat? Which sounds like fewer other English words? What are some nonsense words with similar lexical-phonological qualities? All of the tools on the website are freely available for academic and personal use. [Link]

Neuroimaging Analysis with Missing Data. Aging and clinical research presents unique challenges to fMRI analysis that include variability in motion and morphology, which can result in missing data. In Vaden et al. (2012), we demonstrated that brain regions are often excluded from group level statistical tests due to a small number of missing values. We also showed that multiple imputation can be used to perform statistic tests and estimate group level results in regions with predictable missingness. We developed a toolkit that can be downloaded from NITRC.ORG, to implement this technique for other group level fMRI analyses. [Link]

Pythagorean Displacement and Motion Regressors. Head movement in the scanner can result in fMRI artifacts that are related to position as well as motion. A common strategy to control these artifacts in fMRI signal is to include head position parameters as nuisance covariates in regression analyses. This Matlab script (ZIP archive) uses the Pythagorean Theorem to calculate the magnitude of head movement in the scanner, while conserving degrees of freedom by condensing 3D head position estimates into 1D displacement and motion vectors. [Link]

Publications

Harris, KC, Vaden, KI, Dubno, JR. (In press). Auditory-evoked cortical activity: contribution of brain noise, phase locking, and spectral power. Journal of Basic and Clinical Physiology and Pharmacology. Accepted May 23, 2014.

Vaden, K.I., Kuchinsky, S.E., Cute, S.L., Ahlstrom, J.B., Dubno, J.R. Eckert, M.A. (2013). The cingulo-opercular network provides word recognition benefit. Journal of Neuroscience, 33(48), 18979-18986. [PMID: 24285902]

Eckert, M.A., Kuchinsky, S.E., Vaden, K.I., Cute, S.L., Spampinato, M.V., Dubno, J.R. (2013). White matter hyperintensities predict low frequency hearing in older adults. Journal of the Association for Research in Otolaryngology. [PMID: 23512682]

Vaden, K.I., Gebregziabher, M., Kuchinsky, S.E., Eckert, M.A. (2012). Multiple imputation of missing fMRI data in whole brain analysis. NeuroImage, 60(3), 1843-1855. [PMID: 22500925]

Kuchinsky, S.E., Ahlstrom, J.B., Vaden, K.I., Cute, S.L., Humes, L.E., Dubno, J.R., Eckert, M.A. (2012). Pupil size varies with word listening and response selection difficulty in older adults with hearing loss. Psychophysiology, 50(1), 23-34. [PMID: 23157603]

Eckert, MA, Cute, SL, Vaden, KI, Kuchinsky, SE, Dubno, JR. (2012). Auditory cortex signs of age-related hearing loss.Journal of the Association for Research in Otolaryngology, 13(5), 703-713. [PMID: 22618352]

Kuchinsky, S.E., Vaden, K.I., Keren, N.I., Harris, K.C., Ahlstrom, J.B., Dubno, J.R., Eckert, M.A. (2012). Word intelligibility and age predict visual cortex activity during word listening. Cerebral Cortex, 22(6), 1360-1371. [PMID: 21862447]

Isenberg, A, Vaden, KI, Saberi, K, Muftuler, LT, Hickok, GS. (2012). Functionally distinct regions for spatial processing and sensory motor integration in the planum temporale. Human Brain Mapping, 33(10), 2453-2463. [PMID: 21932266]

Vaden, K.I., Kuchinsky, S.E., Keren, N.I., Harris, K.C., Ahlstrom, J.B., Dubno, J.R., Eckert, M.A. (2011). Inferior frontal sensitivity to common speech sounds is amplified by increasing word intelligibility. Neuropsychologia, 49(13), 3563-3572. [PMID: 21925521]

Vaden, K.I., Piquado, T., Hickok, G. (2011). Sublexical properties of spoken words modulate activity in Broca's area but not superior temporal cortex: implications for models of speech recognition. Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience, 23(10), 2665-2674. [PMID: 21261450]

Vaden, K. I., Muftuler, L.T., Hickok, G. (2010). Phonological repetition-suppression in bilateral superior temporal sulci. Neuroimage, 49, 1018-1023. [PMID: 19651222]

Vaden, K.I. (2009). Phonological processes in speech perception. (Doctoral thesis, University of California, Irvine).
NOTE: Webpage refreshes after 1-2 seconds, then the download link appears.

Posters

Vaden, K.I., Kuchinsky, S.E., Cute, S.L., Ahlstrom, J.B., Dubno, J.R., Eckert, M.A. (2013). Engagement of the cingulo-opercular system enhances future word recognition. Neurobiology of Language Conference, San Diego, CA. [PDF]

Vaden, K.I., Kuchinsky, S.E., Cute, S.L., Ahlstrom, J.B., Dubno, J.R., Eckert, M.A. (2013). Cingulo-opercular activity predicts subsequent word recognition. Fifth Biennial Aging and Speech Communication Conference, Bloomington, IN. [PDF]

Vaden, K.I., Kuchinsky, S.E., Cute, S.L., Ahlstrom, J.B., Dubno, J.R., Eckert, M.A. (2012). Anterior insula and frontal operculum support word recognition in younger and older adults. Society for Neuroscience, New Orleans, LA. [PDF]

Vaden, K.I., Gebregziabher, M., Kuchinsky, S.E., Eckert, M.A. (2012). Multiple imputation toolkit for group level fMRI statistics. 13th Annual Frontiers in Neuroscience Research Day: Neurodegenerative Disorders, Seabrook, SC. [PDF]

Vaden, K.I., Kuchinsky, S.E., Cute, S.L., Ahlstrom, J.B., Dubno, J.R., Eckert, M.A. (2011). An fMRI study of age-related changes in sustained attention and word recognition. 4th Biennial Aging and Speech Communication Conference, Bloomington, IN. [PDF]

Vaden, K., Keren, N.I., Harris, K.C., Ahlstrom, J.B., Dubno, J.R., Eckert, M.A. (2010). Sublexical processing in left inferior frontal gyrus depends on word intelligibility. Neurobiology of Language Conference; Society for Neuroscience, San Diego, CA. [PDF]

Vaden, K. & Hickok, G. (2009). Sublexical and lexical processing in temporal and frontal lobes during word recognition. Society for Neuroscience, Chicago, IL. [PDF]

Vaden, K. & Hickok, G. (2009). Adaptation to phonologically similar words in bilateral Superior Temporal Sulci. Cognitive Neuroscience Society, San Francisco, CA. [PDF]

Updated: June 14, 2014.