Behavioral and Brain Sciences

Open Peer Commentary

“Language impairment gene” does not necessarily equate to “language gene”

Lance Workman a1
a1 Department of Psychology, School of Social Sciences, Bath Spa University, Bath BA2 9BN, United Kingdom.

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The finding of the same language deficit in half the members of the KE family is taken as suggesting that a specific allele (FOXP2) is normally involved in the development of language. Recent studies, however, question the exclusivity of FOXP2, and it is argued that the finding of a gene that disrupts language should not be taken as strong evidence for the existence of genes that underlie it.