Cognition in Down syndrome: a developmental cognitive neuroscience perspective
Article first published online: 25 JAN 2013
Copyright © 2013 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
Wiley Interdisciplinary Reviews: Cognitive Science
Volume 4, Issue 3, pages 307–317, May/June 2013
How to Cite
Edgin, J. O. (2013), Cognition in Down syndrome: a developmental cognitive neuroscience perspective. WIREs Cogn Sci, 4: 307–317. doi: 10.1002/wcs.1221
- Issue published online: 11 APR 2013
- Article first published online: 25 JAN 2013
Down syndrome (DS) is the most common genetic form of intellectual disability. DS results in a characteristic proﬁle of cognitive and neurological dysfunction. The predominant theory of the pattern of neural deﬁcits in this syndrome suggests that DS aﬀects ‘late-developing’ neural systems, including the function of the prefrontal cortex and hippocampus. In order to evaluate the validity of this theory, in this review, I highlight data addressing the neurological and cognitive phenotype in DS across development. In particular, I address the evidence suggesting that DS may impact late-developing neural systems and end with the conclusion that some cognitive diﬃculties in DS must result from poor communication between late-developing regions. Analogous to recent theories of cognitive processing in autism, cognitive deﬁcits in DS may be substantially impacted by less eﬃcient interregional communication. Finally, I discuss some ways in which understanding the impact of altered neurodevelopment in DS has the potential to inform our understanding of species-typical trajectories of cognitive development. WIREs Cogn Sci 2013, 4:307–317. doi: 10.1002/wcs.1221
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