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Timothy Bates, September 27

Timothy Bates

The University of Edinburgh
School of Philosophy, Psychology and Language Sciences

What can genetics do to advance the science of language and cognition?

After briefly outlining the past contributions of genetics to our understanding of reading and of language, results of a GWAS  for reading and for language are presented, along with candidate gene, and SNPset replication results. This material is used to focus on the future status of genetics research: What choices will maximise our understanding of the biology of cognition?

Can we get power from different designs? Discordant twins? Or measured environment? GxE, or sex-limitation and extended twin/pedigree models? Or must we prioritize new psychological tasks or endophenotypes to gain traction on the biology of language? Can gene- or pathway– based work drive discovery? Or is the DNA information missing from current chips: in which case we must prioritize exome and whole genome sequencing. Should the priority instead be to dramatically increase sample sizes? If so, of whom? Mendelizing families, deep pedigrees, more ethnically and geographically diverse samples, or just more people, full stop? The impact of decisions about these questions is discussed.

Where and when:
15:45-17:00 Sep 27, 2011
MPI Nijmegen, Room 163

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