A new study published in PNAS uses brain scans of musicians and non-musicians to demonstrate that humans undergo what's called training-related neuroplasticity: training in music fundamentally changes our brains.
Recent advances in neuroscience have allowed scientists to examine what's termed multi-sensory integration. Specific networks of neurons have been linked to senses like vision and hearing. Multi-sensory integration involves making sense out of input from several of these systems. It's required for humans to interact with and interpret their surroundings.
For a musician, reading music notation is an activity that includes auditory, visual, and motor information. Consequently, it's a useful activity for studying the interaction of multiple senses. This study examined the cortical network that integrates audiovisual and auditory processing using a technique called magnetoencephalographic recordings (MEG).