The role of each cerebral hemisphere in the perception and recognition of musical information is not yet well understood. We studied cerebral blood flow changes during a melody perception task and a melody recognition task. Blood flow velocity in the two middle cerebral arteries of twenty right-handed musically naif volunteers were simultaneously measured by means of bilateral transcranial Doppler ultrasonography during two minutes of passive melody listening and two minutes of a melody recognition task. With respect to baseline values, a bilateral increase of flow velocity occurred in the middle cerebral arteries with a non-significant trend for the right artery during the melody perception task. During the melody recognition task, a significant increase in flow velocity was recorded on the right side with respect to the left side, where a slight simultaneous decrease was found. Our data suggest that melody perception requires bilateral activation of hemispheres and melody recognition mainly an activation of the right hemisphere. This study confirms the ability of transcranial Doppler ultrasonography to correlate artery flow dynamics with selective cerebral activation.
Transcranial Doppler assessment of cerebral flow velocity during perception and recognition of melodies / Matteis, M; Silvestrini, Mauro; Troisi, E; Cupini, Lm; Caltagirone, C.. - In: JOURNAL OF THE NEUROLOGICAL SCIENCES. - ISSN 0022-510X. - 149:(1997), pp. 57-61.