A Simple Test to Identify Dyslexic Children at Birth
is Less Than One Year Away
by Sue Whitney, Research Editor, Wrightslaw
is a learned skill, not a natural skill that develops as we mature.
However, the ease with which we can learn to read is governed by our
week, scientists presented research at the 55th
Annual Meeting of The American Society of Human Genetics about
genetic links associated with dyslexia. According to the news
release about this research:
"With an incidence as high as 5-10 percent in school age children,
dyslexia is primarily genetically determined. Recently, several genes
have been independently identified as causative for the disorder."
One of these, located in the DYX5 locus on chromosome 3, has been
shown by Dr. Kere and colleagues from Karolinska Institute, Sweden
to be the axon guidance receptor gene ROBO1. Another haplotype, on
chromosome 6p22, has been shown by Dr. Silvia Paracchini, University
of Oxford, to be associated with a biological mechanism for the development
Haiying Meng and Jeff Gruen, Yale University, also will describe a
reading disability locus on chromosome 6p22, located within the DCDC2
gene, which is preferentially expressed in brain regions known to
participate in the reading process. Drs. Bruce Pennington, University
of Denver, and Dr. Anthony Monaco, Wellcome Trust, Oxford, will present
information on dyslexia and the genetics of language and reading disorders,
A Simple Test to Identify Children with Dyslexia
According to an
article by Sandra Blakeslee in The New York Times, a genetic
test for dyslexia should be available within a year -- or less.
test involves a simple cheek swab. Pediatricians will be able to accurately
identify children with dyslexia at birth. Appropriate early
intervention can eliminate or lessen the severity of dyslexia before
these children reach the age when formal reading instruction usually
Reading Difficulties and Reading Failure, Early Intervention and Prevention
of the child's "label," most children with disabilities
have deficits in reading. Parents and teachers need to be knowledgeable
about reading problems, appropriate interventions, and prevention.
These publications and resources will help.
Reading Difficulties in Young Children by the Committee on the
Prevention of Reading Difficulties in Young Children, National Research
Council, published by the National Academies
Difficulties in Young Children examines reading problems and introduces
concepts used by experts in the field. In a clear and readable narrative,
you learn about word identification, comprehension, and other processes
in normal reading development. You learn about the factors that put
children at risk of poor reading. You learn how literacy can be fostered
from birth through kindergarten and the primary grades. Preventing
Reading Difficulties in Young Children includes an evaluation
of philosophies, systems, and materials commonly used to teach reading.
can order this publication as a hardback book, a PDF book, or both.
You can also read this publication online for free. Learn
Early Reading Failure and Its Devastating Downward Spiral by Joseph
K. Torgesen (published in the American
Educator by the American Federation
of Teachers. According to Dr. Torgesen:
"Children who are destined to be poor readers in fourth grade
almost invariably have difficulties in kindergarten and first grade
with critical phonological skills . . . These weak phonological skills,
in turn, mean it is difficult for these children to identify (decode)
unknown words, and their efforts to do so produce many errors. Naturally,
these children find it difficult, even unpleasant, to read independently."
"Their problems then spiral." Read
and Prevention from Reading
"Early interventions are designed to help students before they
begin to fail. Knowing which students are at risk for reading difficulty,
and knowing what to do for those students are the first steps in providing
effective early intervention. Find out how to use this knowledge to
help prevent reading problems for struggling readers."
Learn about Intervention and Prevention
Reading Research from Reading
"Enormous amounts of reading and literacy research is available
from the U.S. Department of Education, journals, associations, and
other entities. These suggestions and links will help you find what
you need." Learn
about reading research.
More about research