On the relationship between degree of hand-preference and degree of language lateralization

Metten Somers*, Maartje F. Aukes, Roel A. Ophoff, Marco P. Boks, Willemien Fleer, Kees (C) L. de Visser, Rene S. Kahn, Iris E. Sommer

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

63 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Language lateralization and hand-preference show inter-individual variation in the degree of lateralization to the left- or right, but their relation is not fully understood. Disentangling this relation could aid elucidating the mechanisms underlying these traits. The relation between degree of language lateralization and degree of hand-preference was investigated in extended pedigrees with multi-generational left-handedness (n = 310). Language lateralization was measured with functional Transcranial Doppler, hand-preference with the Edinburgh Handedness Inventory. Degree of hand-preference did not mirror degree of language lateralization. Instead, the prevalence of right-hemispheric and bilateral language lateralization rises with increasing strength of left-handedness. Degree of hand-preference does not predict degree of language lateralization, thus refuting genetic models in which one mechanism defines both hand-preference and language lateralization. Instead, our findings suggest a model in which increasing strength of left-handedness is associated with increased variation in directionality of cerebral dominance. (C) 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)10-15
Number of pages6
JournalBrain and Language
Volume144
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - May-2015

Keywords

  • Hand-preference
  • Left-handedness
  • Language lateralization
  • Functional transcranial Doppler
  • Asymmetry
  • FUNCTIONAL TRANSCRANIAL DOPPLER
  • CEREBRAL LATERALIZATION
  • BIOLOGICAL MECHANISMS
  • WADA TEST
  • HANDEDNESS
  • HYPOTHESIS
  • DOMINANCE
  • PROGRAM
  • ASSOCIATIONS
  • SONOGRAPHY

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