Claudia Metzler-Baddeley1, Roland John Baddeley2, Jaime Canteras3, Anne Rosser4, Elizabeth Coulthard5, Derek K. Jones1
1CUBRIC, Cardiff University, Cardiff, Wales, United Kingdom; 2Experimental Psychology, Bristol University, Bristol, Avon, United Kingdom; 3Music Factory, Bristol, Avon, United Kingdom; 4Biosciences, Cardiff University, Cardiff, Wales, United Kingdom; 5Dementia and Cognitive Neurosciences, Bristol University, Bristol, Avon, United Kingdom
Huntingtons disease is characterised by basal ganglia and white matter degeneration leading to motor and executive dysfunction. This pilot study investigated for the first time a novel drumming training paradigm that combines sequence learning, timing and multi-tasking with practise of hand movement coordination. Diffusion MRI indices of white matter microstructure in frontal motor pathways and working memory performance were compared pre- and post-training. The results show improvements in white matter microstructure and in working memory function and hence potential for an effective clinical intervention.