El título se debe a que el día que Rinze ponía esta entrada en su blog sobre las imágenes obtenidas del sistema nervioso de ratones modificados genéticamente para dotarlos con proteínas fluorescentes en Boing Boing publicaban una entrada titulada “Scanning the brains of jazz musicians” referenciando el siguiente experimento:

Neural Substrates of Spontaneous Musical Performance: An fMRI Study of Jazz Improvisation

To investigate the neural substrates that underlie spontaneous musical performance, we examined improvisation in professional jazz pianists using functional MRI. By employing two paradigms that differed widely in musical complexity, we found that improvisation (compared to production of over-learned musical sequences) was consistently characterized by a dissociated pattern of activity in the prefrontal cortex: extensive deactivation of dorsolateral prefrontal and lateral orbital regions with focal activation of the medial prefrontal (frontal polar) cortex. Such a pattern may reflect a combination of psychological processes required for spontaneous improvisation, in which internally motivated, stimulus-independent behaviors unfold in the absence of central processes that typically mediate self-monitoring and conscious volitional control of ongoing performance. Changes in prefrontal activity during improvisation were accompanied by widespread activation of neocortical sensorimotor areas (that mediate the organization and execution of musical performance) as well as deactivation of limbic structures (that regulate motivation and emotional tone). This distributed neural pattern may provide a cognitive context that enables the emergence of spontaneous creative activity.

Y, para hacer este post más llamativo, por aquí dejo una imagen (en chiquitín) de las que acompaña al texto, con su explicación correspondiente:

Figure 2. Axial slice renderings of mean activations (red/yellow scale bar) and deactivations (blue/green scale bar) associated with improvisation during Scale and Jazz paradigms.

In both paradigms, spontaneous improvisation was associated with widespread deactivation in prefrontal cortex throughout DLPFC and LOFC, combined with focal activation in MPFC. In addition, increases in sensorimotor activity and decreases in limbic activity were seen in both paradigms. Activations were identified through inclusive masking of the contrast for [Improv?Control] with the contrast for [Improv?Rest], and deactivations were identified through inclusive masking of the contrast for [Control?Improv] with the contrast for [Rest?Improv] for both Scale and Jazz paradigms. The scale bar shows t-score values and the sagittal section shows an anatomical representation of slice location; both scale bar and sagittal slice insets apply equally to Scale and Jazz data. Labels refer to axial slice z-plane in Talairach space.


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