Wednesday, November 17, 2010
Old musicians stave off brain decay
The auditory cortex is the part of the brain that deals with processing sound and new research from the University of Toronto suggests that in older musicians it might be better preserved than in other adults of a similar age. The researchers studied a group of musicians and a group of non-musicians on an active-listening task - where they were told to focus on the sounds - and a passive listening task where they carried out another activity. During the tests the researchers used electroencephalography to measure the activity in the participants' brains. During the periods of attentive listening the older musicians' brains performed as well as younger adults whereas the older participants who weren't musicians showed a decline with age.