Abstract - Brown

Lateralization of cortical activity associated with speech production, language processing and finger tapping tasks in children near the onset of stuttering

Abstract: There are limited functional brain imaging data of speech production in children close to the onset of stuttering. Thus, we are unable to know whether differences in brain activity that have been observed in adults who stutter are a cause or consequence of stuttering. Similarly, it remains unclear whether stuttering is primarily a disorder of the planning or execution of speech motor events, or a combination of the two. Therefore we are using Near-Infrared Spectroscopy to examine cortical activity during speech production in a cross-sectional population. We aim to determine whether children who stutter, like adults who stutter, demonstrate aberrant cortical activity underlying speech production. We will also examine neural substrates of planning and execution to determine if stuttering is related to improper speech production planning, execution or both. (Bryan Brown, collaborating with Tricia Zebrowski and John Spencer).