Frances Rauscher, a neuroscientist from the University of Wisconsin discovered an unusual effect of Mozart’s music on people’s physiology in 1993. Listening to the “Sonata in C Major for Two Pianos” was improving the mental abilities of students – they were showing better performance on tests.
Some other experiments have also shown a positive impact of Mozart’s music on brain activity. However, until now scientists have been arguing whether it is just a consequence of a good mood caused by Mozart’s harmonic melodies or is a result of more profound physiological processes, which are somehow related to the particularities of this music.
Recently Rauscher has announced the results of new studies on the Mozart effect. This time music was given to rats, which were to perform various tasks on memory and intelligence. It is logical that rats would hardly appreciate the beauty of classical music. However, just like in the case of experiments with humans, Mozart’s music has greatly improved the ability of animals to perform tasks.
At the same time, the scientist not only checked the progress in their task performance but also “looked into” their brains. He found out that Mozart’s music had affected the activity of certain genes and the production of several proteins responsible for memory and attention. To compare the results of his experiment, Rauscher has examined the same parameters in rats that instead of music were given an equivalent amount of the “white noise”.
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