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Dev Cogn Neurosci. 2018 May 26;34:7-17. doi: 10.1016/j.dcn.2018.05.008. [Epub ahead of print]

Increased variability of stimulus-driven cortical responses is associated with genetic variability in children with and without dyslexia.

Author information

1
McGovern Institute for Brain Research and Department of Brain and Cognitive Sciences, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, MA, USA; Department of Psychology, Texas Christian University, Fort Worth, TX, USA. Electronic address: tmcentanni@gmail.com.
2
McGovern Institute for Brain Research and Department of Brain and Cognitive Sciences, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, MA, USA.
3
Departments of Pediatrics and Genetics, Yale University, New Haven, CT, USA.
4
Communication Sciences and Disorders, MGH Institute of Health Professions, Boston, MA, USA.

Abstract

Individuals with dyslexia exhibit increased brainstem variability in response to sound. It is unknown as to whether increased variability extends to neocortical regions associated with audition and reading, extends to visual stimuli, and whether increased variability characterizes all children with dyslexia or, instead, a specific subset of children. We evaluated the consistency of stimulus-evoked neural responses in children with (N = 20) or without dyslexia (N = 12) as measured by magnetoencephalography (MEG). Approximately half of the children with dyslexia had significantly higher levels of variability in cortical responses to both auditory and visual stimuli in multiple nodes of the reading network. There was a significant and positive relationship between the number of risk alleles at rs6935076 in the dyslexia-susceptibility gene KIAA0319 and the degree of neural variability in primary auditory cortex across all participants. This gene has been linked with neural variability in rodents and in typical readers. These findings indicate that unstable representations of auditory and visual stimuli in auditory and other reading-related neocortical regions are present in a subset of children with dyslexia and support the link between the gene KIAA0319 and the auditory neural variability across children with or without dyslexia.

KEYWORDS:

KIAA0319; gene; mechanisms; neural variability; reading; subgroups

PMID:
29894888
DOI:
10.1016/j.dcn.2018.05.008
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