Continued maturation of auditory brainstem function during adolescence: A longitudinal approach

Jennifer Krizman, Adam Tierney, Ahren B. Fitzroy, Erika Skoe, Jordan Amar, Nina Kraus*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

32 Scopus citations


Objective: Considerable attention has been devoted to understanding development of the auditory system during the first few years of life, yet comparatively little is known about maturation during adolescence. Moreover, the few studies investigating auditory system maturation in late childhood have employed a cross-sectional approach. Methods: To better understand auditory development in adolescence, we used a longitudinal design to measure the subcortical encoding of speech syllables in 74 adolescents at four time points from ages 14 through 17. Results: We find a developmental decrease in the spectral representation of the evoking syllable, trial-by-trial response consistency, and tracking of the amplitude envelope, while timing of the evoked response appears to be stable over this age range. Conclusions: Subcortical auditory development is a protracted process that continues throughout the first two decades of life. Specifically, our data suggest that adolescence represents a transitional point between the enhanced response during childhood and the mature, though smaller, response of adults. Significance: That the auditory brainstem has not fully matured by the end of adolescence suggests that auditory enrichment begun later in childhood could lead to enhancements in auditory processing and alter developmental profiles.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2348-2355
Number of pages8
JournalClinical Neurophysiology
Issue number12
StatePublished - Dec 2015


  • Adolescence
  • Auditory
  • Auditory brainstem response
  • CABR
  • Development
  • FFR

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Neurology
  • Neurology
  • Sensory Systems
  • Physiology (medical)


Dive into the research topics of 'Continued maturation of auditory brainstem function during adolescence: A longitudinal approach'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this