Brain finds new music rewarding: study
- Parliament LIVE: Expert committee to review use of pellet guns, says Rajnath
- Dalit fury spills over to Gujarat streets, 9 more try to end lives; CM meets family assaulted in Una
- Hit by campus protests, FTII makes new students sign ‘decorum, decency’ affidavit
- Dalits are 'soft target' for cow vigilantes: fact finding team
- Suspicious bag found inside Dubai-Amritsar SpiceJet flight
Listening to new music activates the brain region linked to expectations of reward, according to a new study.
The study, conducted at the Montreal Neurological Institute and Hospital – The Neuro, McGill University reveals what happens in our brain when we decide to purchase a piece of music after hearing it for the first time.
Participants in the study listened to 60 previously unheard music excerpts while undergoing functional resonance imaging (fMRI) scanning. "When people listen to a piece of music they have never heard before, activity in one brain region can reliably and consistently predict whether they will like or buy it, this is the nucleus accumbens which is involved in forming expectations that may be rewarding," said lead investigator Dr Valorie Salimpoor.
"What makes music so emotionally powerful is the creation of expectations. Activity in the nucleus accumbens is an indicator that expectations were met or surpassed, and in our study we found that the more activity we see in this brain area while people are listening to music, the more money they are willing to spend," Salimpoor said.
The second important finding is that the nucleus accumbens doesn't work alone, but interacts with the auditory cortex, an area of the brain that stores information about the sounds and music we have been exposed to.
The more a given piece was rewarding, the greater the cross-talk between these regions. Similar interactions were also seen between the nucleus accumbens and other brain areas, involved in high-level sequencing, complex pattern recognition and areas involved in assigning emotional and reward value to stimuli.
In other words, the brain assigns value to music through the interaction of ancient dopaminergic reward circuitry, involved in reinforcing behaviours that are absolutely necessary for our survival such as eating and sex, with some of the most evolved regions of the brain, involved in advanced cognitive processes that are unique to humans.
- UN faces a crisis, but its new secretary general is unlikely to upset tradition
- South China Sea verdict has changed the ground rules for future engagement with China
- Empowering women through JAM
- Resolution of citizen grievances is an indicator of the performance of government departments
- Telescope: Grace and the lack of it
- The endeavour for a common civil law must be to end discrimination, and not stamp majority might