Beskrivning (abstrakt)

There is a growing interest towards lifestyle-related factors, including physical and cognitive activity, that can increase cognitive reserve in older age and help in neurological rehabilitation. Increasing evidence indicates that music engages a large-scale bilateral network in the brain and that regular musical activities can have positive effects on cognitive, psychological and social well-being and on brain structure and function, also in older adults. Choir singing involves many sensory-motor, cognitive, linguistic, emotional, and social processes, which makes it a promising tool for promoting psychological well-being in normal ageing. However, the long-term neurocognitive effects of choir singing in the elderly have never been systematically studied.

The purpose of this study is to determine the long-term effects of regular choir singing on normal ageing using both behavioural and neuroimaging measures. Specifically, the study seeks to determine if choir singing can help maintain better (i) domain-general cognitive functioning (e.g., memory, attention, executive function), (ii) emotional and social well-being, and (iii) specific auditory-cognitive functions crucial for perceiving the changing sound environment. This is a 3-year longitudinal cohort study of 150 senior choir singers recruited from different adult education centres in Helsinki, Espoo, and Vantaa and 75 demographically matched control seniors. HAEC and VAEC have altogether 8 senior choirs that practice weekly led by trained choir conductors. The longitudinal data will comprise (i) questionnaires on cognitive functioning, mood, social engagement, and quality of life (QoL) collected from all participants every 6 months and (ii) neuropsychological assessments (cognitive tests) and EEG measurements (auditory sensory memory, attention) performed for a subgroup of choir singers and control seniors every 12 months.
Gällande start-/slutdatum01/09/2017 → …