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. 2014;2014:516163.
doi: 10.1155/2014/516163. Epub 2014 May 8.

Playing and Listening to Tailor-Made Notched Music: Cortical Plasticity Induced by Unimodal and Multimodal Training in Tinnitus Patients

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Free PMC article

Playing and Listening to Tailor-Made Notched Music: Cortical Plasticity Induced by Unimodal and Multimodal Training in Tinnitus Patients

Janna Pape et al. Neural Plast. .
Free PMC article

Abstract

BACKGROUND. The generation and maintenance of tinnitus are assumed to be based on maladaptive functional cortical reorganization. Listening to modified music, which contains no energy in the range of the individual tinnitus frequency, can inhibit the corresponding neuronal activity in the auditory cortex. Music making has been shown to be a powerful stimulator for brain plasticity, inducing changes in multiple sensory systems. Using magnetoencephalographic (MEG) and behavioral measurements we evaluated the cortical plasticity effects of two months of (a) active listening to (unisensory) versus (b) learning to play (multisensory) tailor-made notched music in nonmusician tinnitus patients. Taking into account the fact that uni- and multisensory trainings induce different patterns of cortical plasticity we hypothesized that these two protocols will have different affects. RESULTS. Only the active listening (unisensory) group showed significant reduction of tinnitus related activity of the middle temporal cortex and an increase in the activity of a tinnitus-coping related posterior parietal area. CONCLUSIONS. These findings indicate that active listening to tailor-made notched music induces greater neuroplastic changes in the maladaptively reorganized cortical network of tinnitus patients while additional integration of other sensory modalities during training reduces these neuroplastic effects.

Figures

Figure 1
Figure 1
Illustration of the design. The red squares indicate the training sessions, the blue ones the behavioral measurements, the yellow ones the tinnitus tone matching measurements, and the green ones the MEG measurements.
Figure 2
Figure 2
Behavioral data. Subjective tinnitus severity score (scale ranged from 0 to 100) for the playing group (gray) and listening group (black). Time point 0 corresponds to the baseline. For time points 1 to 12 the figure depicts the change from baseline in tinnitus severity. Error bars show ± 1 SEM.
Figure 3
Figure 3
Statistical parametric maps of the group × frequency × time point interaction. The tailor made notched music training affected in a significantly different way the two groups and the two frequencies in two areas: right middle temporal cortex, (peak coordinates: x = 56, y = −28, and z = −8; F(2, 34) = 11.492; cluster size = 766 voxels; P < 0.05 AlphaSim corrected) and right posterior parietal cortex (peak coordinates: x = 12, y = −66, and z = 48; F(2, 34) = 11.816; cluster size = 1208 voxels; P < 0.05 AlphaSim corrected).
Figure 4
Figure 4
Statistical parametric maps of the post hoc paired samples t-tests ROI comparing the pre- and posttraining MEG results of the listening (unimodal) group with regard to the tinnitus frequency. Tailor made notched music training induced a decrease in the activity of the right temporal cortex (peak coordinates: x = 68, y = −22, and z = −8; t(16) = 3.62; cluster size = 472 voxels; P < 0.05 AlphaSim corrected) and an increase in the activity of the posterior parietal cortex (peak coordinates: x = 12, y = −64, and z = 52; t(16) = −3.64; cluster size = 155 voxels; P < 0.05 AlphaSim corrected).
Figure 5
Figure 5
Mean contrast estimates for (a) the middle temporal cortex and (b) posterior parietal cortex before, during, and after the treatment. The solid dark grey bars indicate the contrast estimates of the listening group while the solid light grey indicates the activations of the playing group for the tinnitus frequency. The dark grey bars marked with lines indicate the contrast estimates of the listening group for the control frequency. The light grey bars marked with lines indicate the contrast estimates of the playing group for the control frequency. The treatment caused a gradual decrease of the activation of the middle temporal cortex and an increase in the activation of the posterior parietal cortex in the tinnitus frequency of the listening group. Error bars: 2 × standard error of mean.

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