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Dorsal language stream anomalies in an inherited speech disorder

Liégeois, FJ; Turner, SJ; Mayes, A; Bonthrone, AF; Boys, A; Smith, L; Parry-Fielder, B; ... Morgan, AT; + view all (2019) Dorsal language stream anomalies in an inherited speech disorder. Brain , 142 (4) pp. 966-977. 10.1093/brain/awz018.

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Abstract

Speech disorders are highly prevalent in the preschool years, but frequently resolve. The neurobiological basis of the most persistent and severe form, apraxia of speech, remains elusive. Current neuroanatomical models of speech processing in adults propose two parallel streams. The dorsal stream is involved in sound to motor speech transformations, while the ventral stream supports sound/letter to meaning. Data-driven theories on the role of these streams during atypical speech and language development are lacking. Here we provide comprehensive behavioural and neuroimaging data on a large novel family where one parent and 11 children presented with features of childhood apraxia of speech (the same speech disorder associated with FOXP2 variants). The genetic cause of the disorder in this family remains to be identified. Importantly, in this family the speech disorder is not systematically associated with language or literacy impairment. Brain MRI scanning in seven children revealed large grey matter reductions over the left temporoparietal region, but not in the basal ganglia, relative to typically-developing matched peers. In addition, we detected white matter reductions in the arcuate fasciculus (dorsal language stream) bilaterally, but not in the inferior fronto-occipital fasciculus (ventral language stream) nor in primary motor pathways. Our findings identify disruption of the dorsal language stream as a novel neural phenotype of developmental speech disorders, distinct from that reported in speech disorders associated with FOXP2 variants. Overall, our data confirm the early role of this stream in auditory-to-articulation transformations.

Type: Article
Title: Dorsal language stream anomalies in an inherited speech disorder
DOI: 10.1093/brain/awz018
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1093/brain/awz018
Language: English
Additional information: This version is the author accepted manuscript. For information on re-use, please refer to the publisher’s terms and conditions.
Keywords: speech, speech disorder, MRI, inherited, childhood apraxia of speech
UCL classification: UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Pop Health Sciences > UCL GOS Institute of Child Health
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Pop Health Sciences > UCL GOS Institute of Child Health > ICH Developmental Neurosciences Prog
URI: http://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10066393
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