Behavioral and electrophysiology evidence of auditory processing disorder: A twin study

James Jerger*, Linda Thibodeau, Jeffrey Martin, Jyutika Mehta, Gail Tilman, Ralf Greenwald, Lana Britt, Jack Scott, Gary Overson

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

31 Scopus citations


We administered a battery of both behavioral and electrophysiologic measures to a pair of fraternal twin girls, one of whom exhibited symptoms consistent with an auditory processing disorder. Both twins were within normal limits on standardized tests of cognitive and language skills. Basic audiometric measures, as well as behavioral tests of simultaneous masking, backward masking, gap detection, and frequency-sweep discrimination, showed little difference between the twins. Significant differences, however, were evident on event-related potentials (ERPs) in response to both within-channel and across-channel gap detection tasks. Substantial differences were also noted for ERPs to both linguistic and nonlinguistic targets in dichotic listening paradigms. The pattern of electrophysiologic results was consistent with a deficit in the efficiency of interhemispheric transfer of auditory information. A possible reason for the greater effectiveness of electrophysiologic over behavioral measures is discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)438-460
Number of pages23
JournalJournal of the American Academy of Audiology
Issue number8
StatePublished - Sep 1 2002


  • Auditory processing disorder
  • Backward masking
  • Dichotic listening
  • Event-related potential
  • Gap detection
  • Interhemispheric transfer

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Speech and Hearing


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