Voice Banking and Voice Reconstruction for MND patients

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TitleVoice Banking and Voice Reconstruction for MND patients
Publication TypeJournal Article
AbstractWhen the speech of an individual becomes unintelligible due to a degenerative disease such as motor neuron disease (MND), a voice output communication aid (VOCA) can be used. To fully replace all functions of speech communication: communication of information, maintenance of social relationships and displaying identity, the voice must be intelligible, natural-sounding and retain the vocal identity of the speaker. Attempts have been made to capture the voice before it is lost, using a process known as voice banking. But, for patients with MND, the speech deterioration frequently coincides or quickly follows diagnosis. Using model based speech synthesis, it is now possible to retain the vocal identity of the patient with minimal data recordings and even deteriorating speech. The power of this approach is that it is possible to use the patient’s recordings to adapt existing voice models pre-trained on many speakers. When the speech has begun to deteriorate, the adapted voice model can be further modified in order to compensate for the disordered characteristics found in the patient’s speech. We present here an on-going project for voice banking and voice reconstruction based on this technology.
AuthorsVeaux, C., Yamagishi J., and King S.
Year of Publication2011
PublicationThe proceedings of the 13th international CAN SIGACCESS conference on computers and accessibility 2011
ISBN9781450309202, 9781450309196
Publisher DOI
Keywords (MeSH)adult, communication, communication aids for disabled, motor neuron disease, speech, voice