The Kennedy Center teams up with NIH to investigate link between music and health

The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts and the National Institutes of Health launched a new collaborative effort to explore the connections between music, health and wellness.

The effort, dubbed Sound Health, seeks to build upon ongoing investigations into how music can improve the care experience for oncology patients, aid autistic children in learning communication skills and assist people with Parkinson's disease to walk in a controlled rhythm, among other areas of focus.

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"Using new imaging technologies, scientists have documented how early musical training produces actual anatomic changes in the brain," said Francis Collins, MD, PhD, director of the NIH. "And a growing number of reports are appearing where music therapy has provided benefit to individuals with medical conditions as diverse as autism, chronic pain and stroke. But there is so much we still don't know about the effects of music in health broadly, and this partnership aims to explore this uncharted territory."

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