_ Difficulties in reading above the word level have long been recognized, however,systematic, particularly neurobiological, investigation of these problems has largely been ignored. Directly responsive to the RFA cal for: """"""""basic research onthe neurobiological underpinnings of reading fluency, vocabulary development, reading comprehension..."""""""" and """"""""imaging studies that use a variety of imaging modalities (e.g., MRI, fMRI, MEG, Diffusion Tensor Imaging)..."""""""", we propose a longitudinal study to examine the cognitive, linguistic and neurobiological influences on reading comprehension. This projectfollows a largegroup of children who are participants in an ongoing Center project and who werespecifically recruitedfor dysfluent readingat ages 7.5-10.5 years. Building on and extending our previous work,we proposeto bring together and apply state- of-the-art neurobiological measures Including fMRI, magnetoencephelography(MEG), diffusion tensor maging (DTI), and brain morphdmetry to examine brain structure andfunction for reading comprehension in two groups of dysfluent readers: dysfluent with accuracy (DFA);and dysfluent readerswho are inaccurate [DPI), compared to nonimpaired readers (Nl). Specifically we propose to identify the neural correlates of reading comprehension in groups of DFA (n= 25) and DFI (n=25) readers(ages 14-16 years) and in Nl n=50) readers (ages 13-16 years). Functional brain imaging (fMRI, MEG) is examined in a sentence comprehension task which manipulates semantic and syntactic relationships in sentences, using ananomaly paradigm. In addition, we propose to determine cognitive, linguistic, academic and behavioral outcomes and their antecedents in the larger group (n=190) of children. The application of state-of-the-art neurobiological studies to reading comprehension indysfluent readers provides a unique opportunity to identify neurobiological markersfor different subtypes of RD and to assessthe influence of word level reading, fluency andvocabulary in the development of reading comprehension. Results ofthis study offer the potential for identifying the precursors, and improving our understanding of, the development of reading ? comprehension, in turn leading to earlier diagnosis and more targeted interventions for children whose reading difficulties go beyond the level of theword.
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