The birth of musical emotion: a depth electrode case study in a human subject with epilepsy

Ann N Y Acad Sci. 2009 Jul:1169:336-41. doi: 10.1111/j.1749-6632.2009.04870.x.


Intracranial electroencephalography was recorded in an epileptic patient when he was listening to dissonant and consonant chords and to minor and major chords. Changes in dissonance induced event-related potentials (ERPs) in the auditory areas from 200 ms onward, in the orbito-frontal cortex (500-1000 ms), and later in the amygdala and anterior cingulate gyrus (1200-1400 ms), suggesting the sequential involvement of these brain structures in implicit emotional judgment of musical dissonance. Changes in musical mode induced ERPs only in the orbito-frontal cortex (500-1000 ms), emphasizing the implication of this frontal region in emotional judgment of pleasant music.

Publication types

  • Case Reports
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Emotions*
  • Epilepsy / physiopathology*
  • Epilepsy / psychology*
  • Frontal Lobe / physiopathology
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Music*
  • Temporal Lobe / physiopathology