Scientists use music to detect cognitive disorders

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 Scientists use music to detect cognitive disorders

Scientists at Tel Aviv University have developed a method to use music to measure brain activity to detect cognitive decline in older people. The results of the study are published in the journal Frontiers in Aging Neuroscience. The new method is based on a 15-minute measurement of the electrical activity of the brain while performing simple musical tasks. According to the scientists, their development allows for routine monitoring and early detection of cognitive decline for treatment and prevention of rapid deterioration of the patient's condition. The method relies on a combination of Neurosteer's handheld electroencephalogram (EEG) measurement and analysis device and a short musical exercise developed by graduate student Neta Maimon of the School of Psychological Sciences. During the test, the subject is connected to a portable device using an adhesive tape with three electrodes and performs a number of musical and cognitive tasks. Tasks include short melodies performed on different instruments. Subjects are asked to perform various tasks, such as pressing a button every time a particular passage is played, or only when a violin is played. The test also includes a few minutes of meditation to music, designed to bring the brain to a state of rest and provide “basic” indicators for comparison. The obtained EEG results were analyzed using machine learning technology. According to the results, music is indeed an effective tool for measuring brain activity. “Our method allows you to monitor cognitive abilities and detect their decline at an early stage with a quick and easy test that can be performed in any clinic. Today, millions of people around the world are at risk of cognitive decline, and this number will only increase in the coming decades. Our method can provide early diagnosis of these problems and thus open up new possibilities for treatment and prevention, thus improving the quality of life of older people around the world,” the scientists noted.

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