Repeated listening to favorite music induces beneficial brain plasticity in Alzheimer’s patients

A study published on News Medical highlights the benefits of music in Alzheimer’s treatment.

"We have new brain-based evidence that autobiographically salient music -; that is, music that holds special meaning for a person, like the song they danced to at their wedding -; stimulates neural connectivity in ways that help maintain higher levels of functioning," says Michael Thaut, senior author of the study and director of U of T's Music and Health Science Research Collaboratory, who is also a professor at the Faculty of Music and Temerty Faculty of Medicine. "Typically, it's very difficult to show positive brain changes in Alzheimer's patients. These preliminary yet encouraging results show improvement in the integrity of the brain, opening the door to further research on therapeutic applications of music for people with dementia -; musicians and non-musicians alike," says Thaut, who also holds the Tier One Canada Research Chair in Music, Neuroscience and Health.

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