MRI and EARLY DYSLEXIA DETECTION
Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) scanning of the language processing section of the brain can help in the early detection of dyslexia.
This finding from Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) researchers has been published in the Journal of Neuroscience. It focuses on the relationship of the arcuate fasciculus to the reading skills of adults. When the structure of this area of the brain is less organized, there is a tendency to have poor reading skills.
The main reason according to the study is that this area, the arcuate fasciculus, is responsible for bridging the Broca’s area and the Wernicke’s area, which are responsible for speech production and understanding languages (spoken and written) respectively.
This work conducted by researchers from the MIT has provided a clearer relationship between the arcuate fasciculus and the lack of reading skills. The analysis was made in Rhode Island and Massachusetts on 1,000 kindergarten students. Using pre-reading sounds, the skills of each child was analyzed.
The diffusion-weighted MRI technique was utilized to assess some of the children and it can help in dyslexia testing before a child learns how to read. The published study covered brain scans for 40 children.
Language Sounds and Dyslexia
Phonological or language sound awareness in children is measured based on their ability to identify, segment, and rearrange sounds in creating new words. The direct link between phonological awareness and the arcuate fasciculus was established upon comparison of the brain scans and the pre-reading tests. This is significant because recognizing letter sounds and their printed appearance is vital in learning how to read. A more organized arcuate fasciculus will allow both communication areas of the brain to transmit signals better resulting in better speech production as well as more efficient understanding of spoken and written language.
The big question for John Gabrieli, senior author, is how efficient this method can be in the long-term to effectively determine which child is prone to dyslexia. A successful intervention would undoubtedly preempt the development of the disease instead of waiting for it to happen before administering a cure.
The study concludes that early reading skills training can help dyslexic children. It substantiates an earlier MIT study in 2011 on how phonological impairment can lead to dyslexia development.
At Focused Education we test and tutor children with Dyslexia, providing the early reading skills that children with phonological impairment struggle with. Book an appointment to see one of our Dyslexia Specialists today.
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