Children's reading performance is correlated with white matter structure measured by diffusion tensor imaging CORTEX Deutsch, G. K., Dougherty, R. F., Bammer, R., Siok, W. T., Gabrieli, J. D., Wandell, B. 2005; 41 (3): 354-363


We investigated the white matter structure in children (n = 14) with a wide range of reading performance levels using diffusion tensor imaging (DTI), a form of magnetic resonance imaging. White matter structure in a left temporo-parietal region that had been previously described as covarying with reading skill in adult readers also differs between children who are normal and poor readers. Specifically, the white matter structure measured using fractional anisotropy (FA) and coherence index (CI) significantly correlated with behavioral measurements of reading, spelling, and rapid naming performance. In general, lower anisotropy and lower coherence were associated with lower performance scores. Although the magnitude of the differences in children are smaller than those in adults, the results support the hypothesis that the structure of left temporoparietal neural pathways is a significant component of the neural system needed to develop fluent reading.

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View details for PubMedID 15871600