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Perspective ARTICLE Provisionally accepted The full-text will be published soon. Notify me

Front. Neurosci. | doi: 10.3389/fnins.2019.01245

New perspectives on music in rehabilitation of executive and attention functions

  • 1Music and Health Research Collaboratory, University of Toronto, Canada

Modern music therapy, starting around the middle of the twentieth century was primarily conceived to promote emotional well-being and to facilitate social group association and integration. Therefore, it was rooted mostly in social science concepts. More recently, music as therapy began to move decidedly towards perspectives of neuroscience, facilitated by the advent of neuroimaging techniques that help uncover the therapeutic mechanisms for non-musical goals in the brain processes underlying music perception, cognition, and production. In this paper, we focus on executive function (EF) and attentional processes (AP) that are central for cognitive rehabilitation efforts. To this end, we summarize existing behavioral as well as neuroimaging and neurophysiological studies in musicians, non-musicians, and clinical populations. Musical improvisation and instrumental playing may have some potential for EF/AP stimulation and neurorehabilitation. However, more neuroimaging studies are needed to investigate the neural mechanisms for the active musical performance. Furthermore, more randomized clinical trials combined with neuroimaging techniques are warranted to demonstrate the specific efficacy and neuroplasticity induced by music-based interventions.

Keywords: Neurologic Music Therapy (NMT), music improvisation, Music neuroscience, Executive Function, Attentional processes

Received: 03 Jun 2019; Accepted: 05 Nov 2019.

Copyright: © 2019 KOSHIMORI and Thaut. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction in other forums is permitted, provided the original author(s) and the copyright owner(s) are credited and that the original publication in this journal is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.

* Correspondence: PhD. YUKO KOSHIMORI, University of Toronto, Music and Health Research Collaboratory, Toronto, M5S 1A1, Ontario, Canada, yuko.koshimori@mail.utoronto.ca