Summary #1324

Humans are born with brains ‘prewired’ to see words
  • Researchers discovered a “visual word form area” (VWFA) in brain scans of newborns.
  • Even at birth, this area is strongly connected to the language network of the brain, disproving theories that it needs additional learning to become this way.
  • The team analyzed 40 newborn (less than a week old) brain scans, finding that the VWFA is different from areas that recognize faces.
  • This indicated that the VWFA is primed to recognize words before we’re exposed to them.
  • Now, the team is studying brain scans of 3-4 years, with the ultimate goal to understand how the brain becomes a reading brain.


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