“…music performance may modulate the biological pathways that are otherwise essential for the proper maintenance of structure, function and survival of neurons.”

The up-regulation of several motor behavior-related genes may elucidate the molecular pathways that mediate the execution of fine motor skills such as timing, sequencing, and spatial organization of movement, which are essential for playing and performing music.  

As motor behavior is primarily controlled by dopaminergic neurotransmission, the genes related to both dopaminergic neurotransmission and motor behavior may act in harmony during music performance.

We also identified genes that are involved in the elevation of cytosolic calcium ion concentration and calcium ion homeostasis. It is known that stimulation of the auditory system elevates the outer hair cell calcium ion concentration38 and calcium ion concentration essentially regulates neurotransmitter release39, synaptic transmission40, activity-dependent synaptic plasticity41 and gene expression42. For example, intracellular calcium is thought to regulate neuronal firing pattern, which controls song behavior in songbirds43. These data allows us to speculate that calcium ion homeostasis may play a vital upstream role in music-induced dopamine release21,25, synaptic plasticity33 and transcriptional alterations.

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