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Hippocampal volume predicts fluid intelligence in musically trained people


Oechslin, Mathias S; Descloux, Céline; Croquelois, Alexandre; Chanal, Julien; Van De Ville, Dimitri; Lazeyras, François; James, Clara E (2013). Hippocampal volume predicts fluid intelligence in musically trained people. Hippocampus, 23(7):552-558.

Abstract

Recently, age-related hippocampal (HP) volume loss could be associated with a decrease in general fluid intelligence (gF). In the present study we investigated whether and how extensive musical training modulates human HP volume and gF performance. Previously, some studies demonstrated positive effects of musical training on higher cognitive functions such as learning and memory, associated with neural adaptations beyond the auditory domain. In order to detect possible associations between musical training and gF, we bilaterally segmented the HP formation and assessed the individual gF performance of people with different levels of musical expertise. Multiple regression analyses revealed that HP volume predicts gF in musicians but not in nonmusicians; in particular, bilaterally enhanced HP volume is associated with increased gF exclusively in musically trained people (amateurs and experts). This result suggests that musical training facilitates the recruitment of cognitive resources, which are essential for gF and linked to HP functioning. Musical training, even at a moderate level of intensity, can thus be considered as a potential strategy to decelerate age-related effects of cognitive decline.

Abstract

Recently, age-related hippocampal (HP) volume loss could be associated with a decrease in general fluid intelligence (gF). In the present study we investigated whether and how extensive musical training modulates human HP volume and gF performance. Previously, some studies demonstrated positive effects of musical training on higher cognitive functions such as learning and memory, associated with neural adaptations beyond the auditory domain. In order to detect possible associations between musical training and gF, we bilaterally segmented the HP formation and assessed the individual gF performance of people with different levels of musical expertise. Multiple regression analyses revealed that HP volume predicts gF in musicians but not in nonmusicians; in particular, bilaterally enhanced HP volume is associated with increased gF exclusively in musically trained people (amateurs and experts). This result suggests that musical training facilitates the recruitment of cognitive resources, which are essential for gF and linked to HP functioning. Musical training, even at a moderate level of intensity, can thus be considered as a potential strategy to decelerate age-related effects of cognitive decline.

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10 citations in Scopus®
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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:06 Faculty of Arts > Institute of Psychology
Dewey Decimal Classification:150 Psychology
Language:English
Date:2013
Deposited On:16 Dec 2013 09:03
Last Modified:08 Dec 2017 00:59
Publisher:Wiley-Blackwell
ISSN:1050-9631
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1002/hipo.22120
PubMed ID:23519979

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