Background: The DSM-5 separates the diagnostic criteria for mood and behavioral disorders. Both types of disorders share neurocognitive deficits of executive function and reading difficulties in childhood. Children with dyslexia also have executive function deficits, revealing a role of executive function circuitry in reading. The aim of the current study is to determine whether there is a significant relationship of functional connectivity within the fronto-parietal and cingulo-opercular cognitive control networks to reading measures for children with mood disorders, behavioral disorders, dyslexia, and healthy controls (HC). Method: Behavioral reading measures of phonological awareness, decoding, and orthography were collected. Resting state fMRI data were collected, preprocessed, and then analyzed for functional connectivity. Differences in the reading measures were tested for significance among the groups. Global efficiency (GE) measures were also tested for correlation with reading measures in 40 children with various disorders and 17 HCs. Results: Significant differences were found between the four groups on all reading measures. Relative to HCs and children with mood disorders or behavior disorders, children with dyslexia as a primary diagnosis scored significantly lower on all three reading measures. Children with mood disorders scored significantly lower than controls on a test of phonological awareness. Phonological awareness deficits correlated with reduced resting state functional connectivity MRI (rsfcMRI) in the cingulo-opercular network for children with dyslexia. A significant difference was also found in fronto-parietal global efficiency in children with mood disorders relative to the other three groups. We also found a significant difference in cingulo-opercular global efficiency in children with mood disorders relative to the Dyslexia and Control groups. However, none of these differences correlate significantly with reading measures. Conclusions/significance: Reading difficulties involve abnormalities in different cognitive control networks in children with dyslexia compared to children with mood disorders. Findings of the current study suggest increased functional connectivity of one cognitive control network may compensate for reduced functional connectivity in the other network in children with mood disorders. These findings provide guidance to clinical professionals for design of interventions tailored for children suffering from reading difficulties originating from different pathologies.
- Behavioral disorders
- Executive function networks
- Mood disorders
- Phonological awareness
- Resting state functional connectivity