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Origin Of 'Innate' Music Features in the Brain's Neural Mechanism Revealed

by Tanya Thomas on October 24, 2009 at 8:39 AM
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 Origin Of 'Innate' Music Features in the Brain's Neural Mechanism Revealed

In a finding that could tell us more on tthe origins of music in the brain, scientists have revealed neural mechanism of 'innate' music features in non-human primates.

Currently, there is no plausible explanation of the neural basis for why and how music affects physical and psychosocial responses.

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Origins of music perception in humans may have their foundation in animal communication calls, as evidenced in non-human primates.

Many speech sounds and animal vocalizations, for instance, contain components, commonly referred to as complex tones, which consist of a fundamental frequency (f0) and higher harmonics.
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Researchers at Georgetown University Medical Center used electrophysiological recording techniques to study the neuronal activities in the auditory cortex of awake monkeys.

And they have now shown that neurons tuned to the fundamental frequencies and harmonic sounds, and such neural mechanisms of harmonic processing lay close to tonotopically organized auditory areas.

"The understanding of neural mechanism of 'innate' music features in non-human primates will facilitate an improved understanding of music perception in the human nervous system," explained Dr. Yuki Kikuchi, a research associate in the department of physiology and biophysics.

"This will allow a neurobiological framework from which to understand the basis of the effectiveness of music therapeutic interventions," the expert added.

The findings of the study were presented at the 39th annual meeting Society of Neuroscience.

Source: ANI
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