University of Wisconsin–Madison
Loading Events

« All Events

  • This event has passed.

Colloquium Series 2018-19: Dr. Fumiko Hoeft

March 14 @ 4:00 pm - 5:15 pm

Intergenerational Neuroimaging of Literacy and Dyslexia: A New Cognitive Neuroscience Research Paradigm

Parents have large influence on offspring’s brain and cognitive development. The Intergenerational Multiple Deficit Model (van Bergen et al., 2014; or Cumulative Risk and Protection Model, CRAP Model) affords integration of parental influences as well as others, whether genetic or environmental, and whether risk or protective factors, to explain individual differences in reading ability and liability for developing dyslexia, a specific disorder of reading.  Further, it has recently been suggested that most complex traits show intergenerational sex-specific transmission patterns, which could help uncover biological pathways of transmission. Macrocircuits using imaging may be an ideal target for investigations of intergenerational effects, where key causes may converge in ways that lead to complex phenotypes such as reading and dyslexia.

Based on these notions, we are currently examining how parental cognitive and neuroimaging patterns are associated with offspring’s reading and related imaging patterns (e.g. Black et al., 2012; Hosseini et al., 2013; Hoeft & Hancock, 2017; Chang et al., under prep). We first establish the feasibility of this novel approach, intergenerational neuroimaging, by confirming matrilineal transmission patterns in the cortico-limbic system that is well established in gene expression and behavioral studies of animals and humans (Yamagata et al., 2016). We then interrogate network patterns related to reading, and show intergenerational transmission patterns. We also show results indicating how paternal age may negatively predict reading outcomes and the potential neural mechanism (e.g. attention, thalamic development, de novo mutation; Xia et al., under review). We discuss preliminary findings in light of historical and latest causal theories of dyslexia (Hancock, Pugh, & Hoeft, 2017).  This includes introducing a new research program utilizing a natural cross-fostering design allowing us to dissociate genetic, and pre- / postnatal environmental influences, which has traditionally not been feasible in humans, but is critically important in dissecting neurobiological mechanisms underlying reading and dyslexia (Ho et al., 2016).

Talk held in room 107 of Brogden Psychology Buildingat 4 PM in Brogden Hall on Marth 14th, 2019.

For information regarding the talk contact




March 14
4:00 pm - 5:15 pm