TitleMusical expertise is related to altered functional connectivity during audiovisual integration.
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2015
AuthorsParaskevopoulos, Evangelos, Kraneburg Anja, Herholz Sibylle Cornelia, Bamidis Panagiotis, and Pantev Christo
JournalProc Natl Acad Sci U S A
Date Published2015 Oct 06
KeywordsAcoustic Stimulation, Adult, Auditory Perception, Brain, Brain Mapping, Female, Humans, Magnetic Resonance Imaging, Magnetoencephalography, Male, Music, Nerve Net, Photic Stimulation, Visual Perception, Young Adult

The present study investigated the cortical large-scale functional network underpinning audiovisual integration via magnetoencephalographic recordings. The reorganization of this network related to long-term musical training was investigated by comparing musicians to nonmusicians. Connectivity was calculated on the basis of the estimated mutual information of the sources' activity, and the corresponding networks were statistically compared. Nonmusicians' results indicated that the cortical network associated with audiovisual integration supports visuospatial processing and attentional shifting, whereas a sparser network, related to spatial awareness supports the identification of audiovisual incongruences. In contrast, musicians' results showed enhanced connectivity in regions related to the identification of auditory pattern violations. Hence, nonmusicians rely on the processing of visual clues for the integration of audiovisual information, whereas musicians rely mostly on the corresponding auditory information. The large-scale cortical network underpinning multisensory integration is reorganized due to expertise in a cognitive domain that largely involves audiovisual integration, indicating long-term training-related neuroplasticity.

Alternate JournalProc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U.S.A.
PubMed ID26371305
PubMed Central IDPMC4603494