A number of DNA variants linked to dyslexia have been identified

PARIS, Oct. 21 (Benin News) –

Scientists have for the first time identified 42 genetic variants that are reliably associated with dyslexia, a third of which have previously been linked to general cognitive abilities and academic performance. The researchers say their findings, published in the journal ‘Nature Genetics’, help to understand the biology behind why some children have difficulty reading or spelling.

Dyslexia is known to run in families, partly due to genetic factors, but until now little was known about the specific genes that are linked to the risk of developing it.

The study, led by the University of Edinburgh (UK) and involving researchers from Australia, the Netherlands and the United States, is the largest genetic study of dyslexia to date. . According to the research team, previous studies linking dyslexia to specific genes had been conducted in a small number of families and the evidence was unclear. It concerned more than 50,000 adults diagnosed with dyslexia and more than one million undiagnosed adults.

The researchers analyzed the association between millions of genetic variants and dyslexia status and found 42 significant variants. Some of them are associated with other neurodevelopmental disorders, such as language delay, as well as thinking skills and school performance. Many, however, are novel and may represent genes that are more specifically associated with processes essential for learning to read.

Many of the genes associated with dyslexia are also associated with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. Much less overlap of genes associated with dyslexia was found for psychiatric disorders, lifestyle, and health conditions.

Several of the associated genetic variants were also significant in a sample of Chinese speakers, suggesting that there are general cognitive processes in learning to read that do not depend on language type.

The researchers say they were able to predict the reading and spelling abilities of children and adults from four other studies using genetic information from the study, but not with the accuracy needed for diagnostic use.

Lead researcher Michelle Luciano, from the University of Edinburgh’s School of Philosophy, Psychology and Language Sciences, says the study sheds light on many unanswered questions about dyslexia. Our results show that common genetic differences have very similar effects in boys and girls, and that there is a genetic link between dyslexia and ambidexterity,” he explains. Previous work has suggested that certain brain structures may be altered in people with dyslexia, but we found no evidence that genes explain this phenomenon.

“Our results also suggest that dyslexia is strongly genetically linked to performance on reading and spelling tests, which reinforces the importance of standardized tests to identify dyslexia,” she concludes.

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A number of DNA variants linked to dyslexia have been identified

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