Music, an abstract stimulus, can arouse feelings of euphoria, similar to tangible rewards that involve the striatal dopaminergic system. Using the neurochemical specificity of positron emission tomography scanning, combined with psychophysiological measures of autonomic nervous system activity, scientists found endogenous dopamine release in the striatum at peak emotional arousal during music listening. To examine the time course of dopamine release, they used functional magnetic resonance imaging with the same stimuli and listeners, and found a functional dissociation: the caudate was more involved during the anticipation and the nucleus accumbens was more involved during the experience of peak emotional responses to music. These results indicate that intense pleasure in response to music can lead to dopamine release in the striatal system. Notably, the anticipation of an abstract reward can result in dopamine release in an anatomical pathway distinct from that associated with the peak pleasure itself. Their results help to explain why music is of such high value across all human societies.