Identical Neural Risk Factors Predict Cognitive Deficit in Dyslexia and Schizophrenia

Christiana M. Leonard, John M. Kuldau, Leeza Maron, Nikki Ricciuti, Bryan Mahoney, Michael Bengtson, Cheryl DeBose

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

30 Scopus citations


In previous work, the authors found that an anatomical risk index created from the combination of 7 neuroanatomical measures predicted reading and oral language skills in individuals with learning disabilities. Individuals with small auditory brain structures and reduced asymmetry had more deficits than those with large structures and exaggerated asymmetry. In the present study, the same anatomical index predicted reading and other cognitive abilities in 45 individuals with chronic schizophrenia. The anatomical risk index was significantly associated with broad cognitive ability (Pearson r = .53, p < .0001), reading comprehension (r = .58, p < .0001), and a measure of nonverbal reasoning (r = .39, p < .01), but not with age, parental socioeconomic status, symptom measures, alcohol use, or processing speed. These findings support the prediction that reduced size and asymmetry in temporal lobe auditory cortex and cerebellum may not be specific risk factors for schizophrenia but for cognitive deficits that characterize a broad spectrum of developmental disorders.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)147-158
Number of pages12
Issue number2
StatePublished - Mar 2008


  • MRI
  • asymmetry
  • brain size
  • cognition
  • schizophrenia

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuropsychology and Physiological Psychology


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