Testosterone is capable of altering facial threat processing. Voices, similar to faces, convey social information. We hypothesized that administering a single dose of testosterone would change voice perception in humans. In a placebo-controlled, randomly assigned, double-blind crossover design, we administered a single dose of testosterone or placebo to 18 healthy female volunteers and used a passive auditory oddball paradigm. The mismatch negativity (MMN) and P3a in responses to fearfully, happily, and neutrally spoken syllables dada and acoustically matched nonvocal sounds were analyzed, indicating preattentive sensory processing and involuntary attention switches. Results showed that testosterone administration had a trend to shorten the peak latencies of happy MMN and significantly enhanced the amplitudes of happy and fearful P3a, whereas the happyand fearful-derived nonvocal MMN and P3a remained unaffected. These findings demonstrated acute effect of testosterone on the neural dynamics of voice perception. Administering a single dose of testosterone modulates preattentive sensory processing and involuntary attention switches in response to emotional voices.
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Chen, C., Chen, C. Y., Yang, C. Y., Lin, C. H., & Cheng, Y. (2015). Testosterone modulates preattentive sensory processing and involuntary attention switches to emotional voices. Journal of Neurophysiology, 113(6), 1842-1849. https://doi.org/10.1152/jn.00587.2014