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Brain responses to the same spoken syllable completing a Finnish word or a pseudo-word were studied. Native Finnish-speaking subjects were instructed to ignore the sound stimuli and watch a silent movie while the mismatch negativity (MMN), an automatic index of experience-dependent auditory memory traces, was recorded. The MMN to each syllable was larger when it completed a word than when it completed a pseudo-word. This enhancement, reaching its maximum amplitude at about 150 ms after thedoi:10.1006/nimg.2001.0864 pmid:11506534 fatcat:5ph72cjgivfrhieq2ess6rxesa