Smarty Brains: High-IQ kids navigate notable neural shifts | Science News



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Smarty Brains: High-IQ kids navigate notable neural shifts

9:59am, March 29, 2006

The road to exceptional intelligence is paved with dramatic neural alterations, a new brain-imaging study finds.

Critical parts of the brain's outer layer, or cortex, thicken more rapidly during childhood and thin more drastically during adolescence in individuals with extremely high IQ scores compared with peers of average or moderately above-average intelligence, say neuroscientist Philip Shaw of the National Institute of Mental Health in Bethesda, Md., and his colleagues.

The scientists propose that distinctive brain growth in superior-IQ youth reflects prolonged development of neural circuits that contribut

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