Oral Communication

Battery for the Assessment of Auditory Sensorimotor and Timing Abilities (BAASTA): a rehabilitation perspective

Ms Celia DAUVERGNEa, Mr Valentin BEGELb, Mr Charles Etienne BENOITc, Prof Sonja KOTZd, Prof Simone DALLA BELLAc

a CHU Lapeyronie, Montpellier - France, b EuroMov (Movement to Health Lab), Montpellier 1 University - France; NaturalPad Company, Montpellier, France, c EuroMov (Movement to Health Lab), Montpellier 1 University - France, d Max Planck institute for human cognitive and brain sciences, Leipzig, Germany

Background: Impairments of timing abilities are characteristic of different neurological and psychiatric disorders such as Parkinson’s disease, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) or schizophrenia. They can also occur in healthy individuals suffering from beat deaf deafness. These deficits are expressed in the form of impoverished timed performance and/or poor time perception. The characterization of the timing skills of these impaired populations is valuable for the understanding of the disorders and can pave the way to targeted rehabilitation perspectives. To date, no exhaustive tools are available for the systematic assessment of timing skills.

Objective: We aim to introduce the Battery for the Assessment of Auditory Sensorimotor and Timing Abilities (BAASTA), a new tool for the sytematic assessment of rhythm perception and auditory-motor synchronization skills. Preliminary results in Parkinson’s disease, ADHD as well as in the general population are presented.

Material and Method: The battery includes a large array of perceptual and sensorimotor tasks. Perceptual tasks include the comparision of two durations, the discrimination between regular and irregular metronome or musical sequences and judging if a tone is aligned with the beat of music. Sensorimotor tasks include unpaced tapping and paced tapping with metronome and music.

Results: The BAASTA highlighted improvements in timing abilities after a musically cued gait training in patients with Parkinson’s disease. The battery also described the timing impairments in ADHD. Furthermore, the BAASTA helped to characterize individual differences in the general population (e.g. musicians vs. non-musicians).

Discussion: BAASTA is sensitive for the characterization of individual differences within a population in terms of sensorimotor and perceptual timing skills. Given the existing links between timing skills, motor control and cognition, its use could help develop an individualized approach to rehabilitation of motor abilities and cognition in a variety of disorders.

Bibliography: Pathophysiological distortions in time perception and timed performance Allman et al. 2012, Musically cued gait-training improves both perceptual and motor timing in Parkinson’s disease Benoit et al. 2014 ; Effects of musically cued gait training in Parkinson’s disease : beyond a motor benefits Dalla Bella et al. 2014

Keywords : rythm, synchronisation, rehabilitation, movement, Parkinson's disease