Clinical Case Study ARTICLE

Front. Behav. Neurosci., 05 May 2014 | doi: 10.3389/fnbeh.2014.00152

A case of musical preference for Johnny Cash following deep brain stimulation of the nucleus accumbens

  • 1Department of Psychiatry, Academic Medical Center, University of Amsterdam, Amsterdam, Netherlands
  • 2Netherlands Institute for Neuroscience, an Institute of the Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences, Amsterdam, Netherlands

Music is among all cultures an important part of the live of most people. Music has psychological benefits and may generate strong emotional and physiological responses. Recently, neuroscientists have discovered that music influences the reward circuit of the nucleus accumbens (NAcc), even when no explicit reward is present. In this clinical case study, we describe a 60-year old patient who developed a sudden and distinct musical preference for Johnny Cash following deep brain stimulation (DBS) targeted at the NAcc. This case report substantiates the assumption that the NAcc is involved in musical preference, based on the observation of direct stimulation of the accumbens with DBS. It also shows that accumbens DBS can change musical preference without habituation of its rewarding properties.

Keywords: nucleus accumbens, deep brain stimulation, obsessive-compulsive disorder, musical preference, reward system

Citation: Mantione M, Figee M and Denys D (2014) A case of musical preference for Johnny Cash following deep brain stimulation of the nucleus accumbens. Front. Behav. Neurosci. 8:152. doi: 10.3389/fnbeh.2014.00152

Received: 26 November 2013; Accepted: 13 April 2014;
Published online: 06 May 2014.

Edited by:

Paul E. M. Phillips, University of Washington, USA

Reviewed by:

Michael R. Bruchas, Washington University in St. Louis, USA
John Neumaier, University of Washington, USA

Copyright © 2014 Mantione, Figee and Denys. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction in other forums is permitted, provided the original author(s) or licensor are credited and that the original publication in this journal is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.

*Correspondence: Mariska Mantione and Damiaan Denys, Department of Psychiatry, Academic Medical Center, University of Amsterdam, PA.0-162, P.O. Box 22660, 1100 DD Amsterdam, Netherlands e-mail: m.h.mantione@amc.uva.nl

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