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The adolescent brain in flux

Intelligence, as measured by IQ, is often thought to be stable across life, but Cathy Price and colleagues investigate whether individual components are stable across adolescence, and whether fluctuations over time correlate to structural and functional brain changes. In a brain-imaging study of 33 healthy and neurologically normal individuals examined early and late in adolescence, verbal and non-verbal IQ is seen to rise and fall, with corresponding changes in grey matter in speech and movement-related regions of the brain, respectively. It seems that an individual's intellectual capacity relative to their peers can decrease or increase in the teenage years, a finding that will interest educationalists and clinical practitioners.

Nature 479, 7371 table of contents

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