Shared Neural Substrates Underlying Reading and Visual Matching: A Longitudinal Investigation

Xin Cui, Zhichao Xia, Catherine McBride, Ping Li, Jinger Pan, Hua Shu

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)


The role of visual skills in reading acquisition has long been debated and whether there is shared neurobiological basis between visual skills and reading is not clear. This study investigated the relationship between Visual Matching and reading and their shared neuroanatomical basis. Two hundred and ninety-three typically developing Mandarin-speaking children were followed in a longitudinal study from ages 4 to 11 years old. A subsample of 79 children was further followed up at 14 years old when the MRI data were collected. Results showed that the development of Visual Matching from ages 6 to 8 predicted reading accuracy at age 11. In addition, both the development of Visual Matching and reading accuracy were associated with cortical surface area of a cluster located in fusiform gyrus. These findings suggested that the mapping from visual codes to phonological codes is important in learning to read and that left fusiform gyrus provided neural basis for such mapping. Implications of these findings in light of a new approach toward the neurocognitive mechanisms underlying reading development are discussed.
Original languageEnglish
Article number567541
Pages (from-to)445
Number of pages1
JournalDefault journal
Publication statusPublished - 22 Oct 2020


  • Chinese
  • Visual Matching
  • left fusiform gyrus
  • longitudinal
  • print-to-sound mapping
  • reading

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuropsychology and Physiological Psychology
  • Neurology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Biological Psychiatry
  • Behavioral Neuroscience


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