Ph.D Thesis

Ph.D StudentMoisesco-Yiflach Tsuf
SubjectAuditory Evoked Potentials among Dyslexics Students
DepartmentDepartment of Medicine
Supervisor PROFESSOR EMERITUS Hillel Pratt


Objectives: To determine the generality of auditory processing impairment in phonologic dyslexics by studying their auditory Event-Related Potentials (ERPs) and the spatio-temporal distribution of their brain activity to auditory linguistic and non-linguistic stimuli with temporal and spectral discriminating cues.

Methods: Fourteen adult phonologic dyslexics and 14 normal reading students, all with high academic achievements, were compared. ERP waveform analysis and current density source estimation (Low resolution Electromagnetic Tomographic Analysis  - LORETA) were conducted on 21-channel records from subjects who passively listened or actively discriminated four types of auditory stimuli: linguistic and non-linguistic stimuli that differed in spectral or temporal characteristics.   

Results: Significant differences were found for all ERP latencies (N1, P2, N2, P3) in response to all stimuli, with dyslexics presenting longer latencies compared to normal readers. Current density distributions and their time courses also differed significantly, regardless of stimulus type or attention allocation. Among normal readers, early activity (around N1) was characterized by a rapid change of maximum activity from right to left temporal lobe. Later activity (around P3) was characterized by a stable temporal activity with bilaterally synchronous peak activity. Among the dyslexics the early N1 activity was stable with left hemisphere prominence, with no alternation between the hemispheres, while the later P3 activity peaked earlier in the right hemisphere than in the left.

Conclusions: Dyslexics were different from controls in processing all auditory stimuli:  verbal and non verbal stimuli with temporal as well as with spectral discriminating cues. The differences mainly consisted of latency and time courses of current density distributions, beginning as early as N1 and extending to the late P3.