INTRINSIC RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN FACIAL MOTION AND ACOUSTICS IN INDIVIDUALS WITH PARKINSONâ€™S DISEASE
Parkinsonâ€™s disease (PD) is closely associated with the death of dopaminergic neurons in the basal ganglia, which results in a reduction of facial dynamics during speech production. In young adult speakers, the relationship between facial motion and acoustics is robust. It can be hypothesized that this relationship between facial motion and speech acoustics is reduced in PD given the limitations in facial expression; however, virtually no study had addressed this relationship yet. The current project was designed to address this issue using a 3D video system in combination with Blacklight illumination to record facial motion with time aligned acoustic data. Findings show that in comparison to age-matched control speakers, PD subjects have significantly lower correlations for speech gestures, except for upper lip movement. The findings of this study have implications for the future development of facial motion based speech recognition software and rehabilitation tools.