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The emergence of dyslexia in the developing brain

: Kuhl, Ulrike; Neef, Nicole E.; Kraft, Indra; Schaadt, Gesa; Dörr, Liane; Brauer, Jens; Czepezauer, Ivonne; Müller, Bent; Wilcke, Arndt; Kirsten, Holger; Emmrich, Frank; Boltze, Johannes; Friederici, Angela D.; Skeide, Michael A.

Fulltext ()

NeuroImage 211 (2020), Art. 116633, 11 pp.
ISSN: 1053-8119
ISSN: 1095-9572
Journal Article, Electronic Publication
Fraunhofer IZI ()
developmental dyslexia; developmental learning disorder; reading development; developmental cognitive neuroscience

Developmental dyslexia, a severe deficit in literacy learning, is a neurodevelopmental learning disorder. Yet, it is not clear whether existing neurobiological accounts of dyslexia capture potential predispositions of the deficit or consequences of reduced reading experience. Here, we longitudinally followed 32 children from preliterate to school age using functional and structural magnetic resonance imaging techniques. Based on standardised and age-normed reading and spelling tests administered at school age, children were classified as 16 dyslexic participants and 16 controls. This longitudinal design allowed us to disentangle possible neurobiological predispositions for developing dyslexia from effects of individual differences in literacy experience. In our sample, the disorder can be predicted already before literacy learning from auditory cortex gyrification and aberrant downstream connectivity within the speech processing system. These results provide evidence for the notion that dyslexia may originate from an atypical maturation of the speech network that precedes literacy instruction.