Neural language networks at birth

Daniela Perani, Maria C. Saccuman, Paola Scifo, Alfred Awander, Danilo Spada, Cristina Baldoli, Antonella Poloniato, Gabriele Lohmann, Angela D. Friederici

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

The ability to learn language is a human trait. In adults and children, brain imaging studies have shown that auditory language activates a bilateral frontotemporal network with a left hemispheric dominance. It is an open question whether these activations represent the complete neural basis for language present at birth. Here we demonstrate that in 2-d-old infants, the language-related neural substrate is fully active in both hemispheres with a preponderance in the right auditory cortex. Functional and structural connectivities within this neural network, however, are immature, with strong connectivities only between the two hemispheres, contrasting with the adult pattern of prevalent intrahemispheric connectivities. Thus, although the brain responds to spoken language already at birth, thereby providing a strong biological basis to acquire language, progressive maturation of intrahemispheric functional connectivity is yet to be established with language exposure as the brain develops.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)16056-16061
Number of pages6
JournalProceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
Volume108
Issue number38
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Oct 20 2011

Fingerprint

Language
Parturition
Auditory Cortex
Aptitude
Brain
Neuroimaging

Keywords

  • Brain activity
  • Dorsal pathway
  • Newborns
  • Ventral pathway

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General

Cite this

Perani, D., Saccuman, M. C., Scifo, P., Awander, A., Spada, D., Baldoli, C., ... Friederici, A. D. (2011). Neural language networks at birth. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 108(38), 16056-16061. https://doi.org/10.1073/pnas.1102991108

Neural language networks at birth. / Perani, Daniela; Saccuman, Maria C.; Scifo, Paola; Awander, Alfred; Spada, Danilo; Baldoli, Cristina; Poloniato, Antonella; Lohmann, Gabriele; Friederici, Angela D.

In: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, Vol. 108, No. 38, 20.10.2011, p. 16056-16061.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Perani, D, Saccuman, MC, Scifo, P, Awander, A, Spada, D, Baldoli, C, Poloniato, A, Lohmann, G & Friederici, AD 2011, 'Neural language networks at birth', Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, vol. 108, no. 38, pp. 16056-16061. https://doi.org/10.1073/pnas.1102991108
Perani, Daniela ; Saccuman, Maria C. ; Scifo, Paola ; Awander, Alfred ; Spada, Danilo ; Baldoli, Cristina ; Poloniato, Antonella ; Lohmann, Gabriele ; Friederici, Angela D. / Neural language networks at birth. In: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America. 2011 ; Vol. 108, No. 38. pp. 16056-16061.
@article{b0ca6c04b7914ef693fa8232d6cea4b5,
title = "Neural language networks at birth",
abstract = "The ability to learn language is a human trait. In adults and children, brain imaging studies have shown that auditory language activates a bilateral frontotemporal network with a left hemispheric dominance. It is an open question whether these activations represent the complete neural basis for language present at birth. Here we demonstrate that in 2-d-old infants, the language-related neural substrate is fully active in both hemispheres with a preponderance in the right auditory cortex. Functional and structural connectivities within this neural network, however, are immature, with strong connectivities only between the two hemispheres, contrasting with the adult pattern of prevalent intrahemispheric connectivities. Thus, although the brain responds to spoken language already at birth, thereby providing a strong biological basis to acquire language, progressive maturation of intrahemispheric functional connectivity is yet to be established with language exposure as the brain develops.",
keywords = "Brain activity, Dorsal pathway, Newborns, Ventral pathway",
author = "Daniela Perani and Saccuman, {Maria C.} and Paola Scifo and Alfred Awander and Danilo Spada and Cristina Baldoli and Antonella Poloniato and Gabriele Lohmann and Friederici, {Angela D.}",
year = "2011",
month = "10",
day = "20",
doi = "10.1073/pnas.1102991108",
language = "English",
volume = "108",
pages = "16056--16061",
journal = "Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America",
issn = "0027-8424",
number = "38",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - Neural language networks at birth

AU - Perani, Daniela

AU - Saccuman, Maria C.

AU - Scifo, Paola

AU - Awander, Alfred

AU - Spada, Danilo

AU - Baldoli, Cristina

AU - Poloniato, Antonella

AU - Lohmann, Gabriele

AU - Friederici, Angela D.

PY - 2011/10/20

Y1 - 2011/10/20

N2 - The ability to learn language is a human trait. In adults and children, brain imaging studies have shown that auditory language activates a bilateral frontotemporal network with a left hemispheric dominance. It is an open question whether these activations represent the complete neural basis for language present at birth. Here we demonstrate that in 2-d-old infants, the language-related neural substrate is fully active in both hemispheres with a preponderance in the right auditory cortex. Functional and structural connectivities within this neural network, however, are immature, with strong connectivities only between the two hemispheres, contrasting with the adult pattern of prevalent intrahemispheric connectivities. Thus, although the brain responds to spoken language already at birth, thereby providing a strong biological basis to acquire language, progressive maturation of intrahemispheric functional connectivity is yet to be established with language exposure as the brain develops.

AB - The ability to learn language is a human trait. In adults and children, brain imaging studies have shown that auditory language activates a bilateral frontotemporal network with a left hemispheric dominance. It is an open question whether these activations represent the complete neural basis for language present at birth. Here we demonstrate that in 2-d-old infants, the language-related neural substrate is fully active in both hemispheres with a preponderance in the right auditory cortex. Functional and structural connectivities within this neural network, however, are immature, with strong connectivities only between the two hemispheres, contrasting with the adult pattern of prevalent intrahemispheric connectivities. Thus, although the brain responds to spoken language already at birth, thereby providing a strong biological basis to acquire language, progressive maturation of intrahemispheric functional connectivity is yet to be established with language exposure as the brain develops.

KW - Brain activity

KW - Dorsal pathway

KW - Newborns

KW - Ventral pathway

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=80053165995&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=80053165995&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1073/pnas.1102991108

DO - 10.1073/pnas.1102991108

M3 - Article

C2 - 21896765

AN - SCOPUS:80053165995

VL - 108

SP - 16056

EP - 16061

JO - Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America

JF - Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America

SN - 0027-8424

IS - 38

ER -