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Brain Res Cogn Brain Res. 2005 Dec;25(3):735-40. Epub 2005 Nov 2.

Arithmetic ability and parietal alterations: a diffusion tensor imaging study in velocardiofacial syndrome.

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Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, 401 Quarry Rd., Stanford University School of Medicine, Stanford, CA 94305, USA.


Velocardiofacial syndrome (VCFS) is a congenital anomaly that causes somatic as well as cognitive and psychiatric impairments. Previous studies have found specific deficits in arithmetic abilities in subjects with VCFS. In this study, we investigated whether abnormalities in white matter pathways are correlated with reduced arithmetic ability. Nineteen individuals with VCFS aged 7-19 years received diffusion-weighted magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scans. A linear regression model was used to correlate fractional anisotropy (FA) values with scores of the arithmetic subscale on the WISC/WAIS on a voxel-by-voxel basis, after covarying for any IQ- and age-related effects. There was a statistically significant positive correlation between the arithmetic score on the WISC/WAIS and FA values in white matter tracts adjacent to the left supramarginal and angular gyri, as well as along the left intraparietal sulcus. Inferior parietal lobe white matter structural aberrations may contribute to reduced arithmetic ability in VCFS.

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