Laurence S. Irlicht
Graeme M. Clark
Australian Bionic Ear and Hearing Res. Inst., 384--388 Albert Rd., E. Melbourne, Victoria 3002, Australia
Experiments demonstrate that electric stimulation of the auditory nerve evokes responses, which are qualitatively different to those of normal hearing. A self-exciting point process model of the neural response is applied to explain and predict responses for both situations. For acoustic stimulation, the model predicts the initial responses to a tone, average firing rate, maximum firing rate, and the shape of the per-stimulus time histogram. The model also predicts the neural response to pulsatile electric stimulation. For applications such as cochlear implants, it would be beneficial if the acoustic and electric responses were more similar. The model is used to parametrize the response differences in each case and based on these parameters to design electrical stimuli, which cause a neuron to respond similarly to the normal hearing situation. Such stimuli should find application in advanced cochlear implants.