Author(s): Richards TL, Berninger VW
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Abstract Brains of 18 children with dyslexia (5 girls, 13 boys) and 21 and without dyslexia (8 girls, 13 boys) were scanned before and after the children with dyslexia received instructional treatment. Both at Time 1 and Time 2 all children performed an fMRI phoneme mapping task during brain scanning-deciding whether letter(s) in pair of pronounceable nonwords could stand for the same sound. Results were analyzed with a seed point correlational method for functional connectivity from four seed points based on prior studies: inferior frontal gyrus, middle frontal gyrus, the occipital region, and cerebellum. At Time 1 before treatment, a significant difference in fMRI connectivity occurred between children with dyslexia and normal reading controls in the left inferior frontal gyrus and its correlations with right and left middle frontal gyrus, right and left supplemental motor area, left precentral gyrus, and right superior frontal gyrus. There were no significant differences for the seed regions placed in the middle frontal gyrus, occipital gyrus or cerebellum. Children with dyslexia had greater functional connectivity from the left inferior frontal gyrus seed point to the right inferior frontal gyrus than did the children without dyslexia. Compared to adults with and without dyslexia who differed in bilateral connectivity from left inferior frontal gyrus on the same task, the children with and without dyslexia differed in left side connectivity from left inferior frontal gyrus. At Time 2 after treatment, the children with dyslexia, who had participated in a three-week instructional program that provided explicit instruction in linguistic awareness, alphabetic principle (taught in a way to maximize temporal contiguity of grapheme-phoneme associations), decoding and spelling, and a writers' workshop, did not differ from the children without dyslexia in any of the clusters in the group difference map identifying differences between dyslexics and good readers, showing that functional connectivity (and not just regions of interest) may normalize following instructional treatment.
This article was published in J Neurolinguistics
and referenced in OMICS Journal of Radiology