- Researchers suggest it could potentially lead to to advances useful for clinical diagnosis or biofeedback therapy
By DAMIEN GAYLE
Scientists have combined and translated two kinds of brain waves into music, offering a unique insight into the functional activity of our minds. Researchers used electroencephalography scans to create the pitch and duration of notes and functional magnetic resonance imaging scans to control the intensity of the music.
The study, published in the open access journal PLoS ONE, reveals an improved method to reflect the physiological processes of the scale-free brain in music. Previous research published in PLoS ONE by the same group has described how EEG amplitudes and waveforms may be converted to music. In the past, researchers at the U.S. Department of Homeland Security's Science and Technology Directorate have also explored the possibility of a form of neuro-training called 'Brain Music'.
This uses music created from an individual's brain waves to help the individual move from an anxious state to a relaxed state. But this new study by Jing Lu and colleagues from the University of Electronic Science and Technology, China, uses simultaneous EEG and fMRI recordings to better represent the activity of the brain in musical notes.
According to the researchers, this brain music 'embodies the workings of the brain as art, providing a platform for scientists and artists to work together to better understand the links between music and the human brain.' The authors also suggest that combining EEG and fMRI data may produce music that better reflects the functional activity of the brain, potentially leading to advances useful for clinical diagnosis or biofeedback therapy.