Isolation of the genetic factors underlying speech and language disorders

Fisher, S. E. (2002). Isolation of the genetic factors underlying speech and language disorders. In R. Plomin, J. C. DeFries, I. W. Craig, & P. McGuffin (Eds.), Behavioral genetics in the postgenomic era (pp. 205-226). Washington, DC: American Psychological Association.
This chapter highlights the research in isolating genetic factors underlying specific language impairment (SLI), or developmental dysphasia, which exploits newly developed genotyping technology, novel statistical methodology, and DNA sequence data generated by the Human Genome Project. The author begins with an overview of results from family, twin, and adoption studies supporting genetic involvement and then goes on to outline progress in a number of genetic mapping efforts that have been recently completed or are currently under way. It has been possible for genetic researchers to pinpoint the specific mutation responsible for some speech and language disorders, providing an example of how the availability of human genomic sequence data can greatly accelerate the pace of disease gene discovery. Finally, the author discusses future prospects on how molecular genetics may offer new insight into the etiology underlying speech and language disorders, leading to improvements in diagnosis and treatment.
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