there is no concrete proof but there is an association between genes and
dyslexia. With further research genetic testing will yield positive results for
determining inherited capability of dyslexia. Dyslexia can be tested through
neuro-imaging techniques such as static scans, volumetrics and functional
imaging. Read on to know more about the testing for dyslexia.
Researchers working on the relation of diseases and
family background have conducted a number studies that establish a string of
correlation between genetic factors and dyslexia.
These linkage studies identify a distinct association of the genes and
dyslexia. Some studies say that it is chromosome 15 that needs to be focused on
but there are other studies that do not agree with this proposition.
There are other studies that call for special
attention on chromosome 6. It is believed that in near future with the progress
of further extensive research, genetic
testing will yield significantly effective results with regard to dyslexia.
There is also a possibility that the diagnosis of the disease can be done as
early as the third
trimester of pregnancy
through the chorionic villus sampling.
Technique of Testing
Testing for dyslexia is done through neuro-imaging
techniques. This is classified into following.
scans – Here the brain structure and myelin is assessed.
According to the current research status, there is no abnormality in the
structure or myelin that can be attributed to dyslexia.
– This technique measures the size of specific areas of the brain, like corpus
callosum. There can be a symmetrical or asymmetrical pattern in the left and
right hemispheres of the brain. The study measures and identifies this degree
in the two corresponding structures. Children
or individuals with dyslexia tend have an atypical symmetrical cerebrum, but
further research is required.
Imaging – This is currently the most popular method in
genetic testing for dyslexia. The technique comprises of a series of parts,
(positron emission tomography) scan
analysis (computer assisted)
Earlier static snapshots of the brain images were
taken by the researchers. Now it is a dynamic imaging process so that the
working brain is better assessed. The changes in the activity levels in the
brain are actually identified with the simultaneous alterations in the pattern
and degree of blood flow and the metabolic functioning. The changes are
recorded from various areas of the brain and the patterns are compared with the
different mental tasks that are given to the child. There is a definite pattern
observed in the dyslexic and non-dyslexic readers.
Testing and Current Scenario
In all the above mentioned techniques, none are in the field of genetic
testing. It is important to note here, it is only the altered behavioral
pattern in comparison with other children that makes a dyslexic child stand out
from his peers. By far this is a matter of close observation by the parents or
the preschool teachers. It is only that the opinion of an expert is sought and
the child is brought for screening.
The other associated tests that confirm whether the
child is having dyslexia or is merely suffering from a simpler condition called
delayed development or attention deficit disorder. In order to obtain reliable
and concrete results genetic testing needs to go a long way. The actual relationship
between the particular chromosome whether it is 15 or 6 with a dyslexic
condition needs to be further studied in order to reach a definite conclusion.
It is slated to be a breakthrough in medical science once this relation is
The earlier the condition of dyslexia is
identified, the easier it is to chart out a course of treatment so that the
child is enabled to adapt himself and brace up to deal with the world around
him. Regular counseling and work out sessions are suggested with experts in
order to ease out the learning disabilities and in the long run it greatly
helps the child to outgrow his disabilities concerning cognitive problems.