The genetic relationship between handedness and neurodevelopmental disorders

William M. Brandler, Silvia Paracchini

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

111 Citations (Scopus)
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Handedness and brain asymmetry have been linked to neurodevelopmental disorders such as dyslexia and schizophrenia. The genetic nature of this correlation is not understood. Recent discoveries have shown handedness is determined in part by the biological pathways that establish left/right (LR) body asymmetry during development. Cilia play a key role in this process, and candidate genes for dyslexia have also been recently shown to be involved in cilia formation. Defective cilia result not only in LR body asymmetry phenotypes but also brain midline phenotypes such as an absent corpus callosum. These findings suggest that the mechanisms for establishing LR asymmetry in the body are reused for brain midline development, which in turn influences traits such as handedness and reading ability.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)83-90
JournalTrends in Molecular Medicine
Issue number2
Early online date23 Nov 2013
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2014


  • Cerebral asymmetry
  • Ciliogenesis
  • Corpus callosum
  • Dyslexia
  • Handedness
  • Schizophrenia


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