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Nature. 2004 Oct 14;431(7010):757.

Neurolinguistics: structural plasticity in the bilingual brain.

Author information

  • 1Wellcome Department of Imaging Neuroscience, 12 Queen Square, London WC1N 3BG, UK. a.mechelli@fil.ion.ucl.ac.uk

Abstract

Humans have a unique ability to learn more than one language--a skill that is thought to be mediated by functional (rather than structural) plastic changes in the brain. Here we show that learning a second language increases the density of grey matter in the left inferior parietal cortex and that the degree of structural reorganization in this region is modulated by the proficiency attained and the age at acquisition. This relation between grey-matter density and performance may represent a general principle of brain organization.

PMID:
15483594
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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