Articles by Kaja K. Jasińska in JoVE
Neuroimaging Field Methods Using Functional Near Infrared Spectroscopy (NIRS) Neuroimaging to Study Global Child Development: Rural Sub-Saharan Africa Kaja K. Jasińska1,2, Sosthène Guei3 1Linguistics and Cognitive Science Department, University of Delaware, 2Haskins Laboratories, 3Centre de Recherche et d'Action pour la Paix Portable neuroimaging approaches (functional Near Infrared Spectroscopy) provide advances to the study of the brain in previously inaccessible regions; here, rural Côte d'Ivoire. Innovation in methods and development of culturally-appropriate neuroimaging protocols permits novel study of the brain's development and children's learning outcomes in environments with significant poverty and adversity.
Other articles by Kaja K. Jasińska on PubMed
Age of Bilingual Exposure Is Related to the Contribution of Phonological and Semantic Knowledge to Successful Reading Development Child Development. | Pubmed ID: 28169419 Bilingual children's reading as a function of age of first bilingual language exposure (AoE) was examined. Bilingual (varied AoE) and monolingual children (N = 421) were compared in their English language and reading abilities (6-10 years) using phonological awareness, semantic knowledge, and reading tasks. Structural equation modeling was applied to determine how bilingual AoE predicts reading outcomes. Early exposed bilinguals outperformed monolinguals on phonological awareness and word reading. Phonology and semantic (vocabulary) knowledge differentially predicted reading depending on the bilingual experience and AoE. Understanding how bilingual experiences impact phonological awareness and semantic knowledge, and in turn, impact reading outcomes is relevant for our understanding of what language and reading skills are best to focus on, and when, to promote optimal reading success.
The BDNF Val(66)Met Polymorphism is Associated with Structural Neuroanatomical Differences in Young Children Behavioural Brain Research. Jun, 2017 | Pubmed ID: 28359883 The brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) Val(66)Met single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) has been associated with individual differences in brain structure and function, and cognition. Research on BDNF's influence on brain and cognition has largely been limited to adults, and little is known about the association of this gene, and specifically the Val(66)Met polymorphism, with developing brain structure and emerging cognitive functions in children. We performed a targeted genetic association analysis on cortical thickness, surface area, and subcortical volume in 78 children (ages 6-10) who were Val homozygotes (homozygous Val/Val carriers) or Met carriers (Val/Met, Met/Met) for the Val(66)Met locus using Atlas-based brain segmentation. We observed greater cortical thickness for Val homozygotes in regions supporting declarative memory systems (anterior temporal pole/entorhinal cortex), consistent with adult findings. Met carriers had greater surface area in the prefrontal and parietal cortices and greater cortical thickness in lateral occipital/parietal cortex in contrast to prior adult findings that may relate to performance on cognitive tasks supported by these regions in Met carriers. Finally, we found larger right hippocampal volume in Met carriers, although inconsistent with adult findings (generally reports larger volumes for Val homozygotes), is consistent with a recent finding in children. Gene expression levels vary across different brain regions and across development and our findings highlight the need to consider this developmental change in explorations of BDNF-brain relationships. The impact of the BDNF Val(66)Met polymorphism on the structure of the developing brain therefore reflects regionally-specific developmental changes in BDNF expression and cortical maturation trajectories.