Clyde Francks

Clyde Francks
Max Planck Institute & Radboud University Medical Center Nijmegen

D.Phil.
Professor of brain imaging genomics. Chair, laterality working group of the ENIGMA consortium.

About

226
Publications
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14,673
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Publications

Publications (226)
Article
Full-text available
Left-handers are often excluded from study cohorts in neuroscience and neurogenetics in order to reduce variance in the data. However, recent investigations have shown that the inclusion or targeted recruitment of left-handers can be informative in studies on a range of topics, such as cerebral lateralization and the genetic underpinning of asymmet...
Article
Full-text available
Altered structural brain asymmetry in autism spectrum disorder (ASD) has been reported. However, findings have been inconsistent, likely due to limited sample sizes. Here we investigated 1,774 individuals with ASD and 1,809 controls, from 54 independent data sets of the ENIGMA consortium. ASD was significantly associated with alterations of cortica...
Article
Full-text available
Left–right hemispheric asymmetry is an important aspect of healthy brain organization for many functions including language, and it can be altered in cognitive and psychiatric disorders. No mechanism has yet been identified for establishing the human brain’s left–right axis. We performed multivariate genome-wide association scanning of cortical reg...
Article
Full-text available
Significance Left-handedness occurs in roughly 10% of people, but whether it involves altered brain anatomy has remained unclear. We measured left to right asymmetry of the cerebral cortex in 28,802 right-handers and 3,062 left-handers. There were small average differences between the two handedness groups in brain regions important for hand contro...
Article
Hemispheric asymmetry is a cardinal feature of human brain organization. Altered brain asymmetry has also been linked to some cognitive and neuropsychiatric disorders. Here, the ENIGMA (Enhancing NeuroImaging Genetics through Meta-Analysis) Consortium presents the largest-ever analysis of cerebral cortical asymmetry and its variability across indiv...
Article
Full-text available
Alterations in brain size and organization represent some of the most distinctive changes in the emergence of our species. Yet, there is limited understanding of how genetic factors contributed to altered neuroanatomy during human evolution. Here, we analyze neuroimaging and genetic data from up to 30,000 people in the UK Biobank and integrate with...
Article
Lateralization is a fundamental characteristic of many behaviors and the organization of the brain, and atypical lateralization has been suggested to be linked to various brain-related disorders such as autism and schizophrenia. Right-handedness is one of the most prominent markers of human behavioural lateralization, yet its neurobiological basis...
Article
Full-text available
Small average differences in the left-right asymmetry of cerebral cortical thickness have been reported in individuals with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) compared to typically developing controls, affecting widespread cortical regions. The possible impacts of these regional alterations in terms of structural network effects have not previously bee...
Preprint
Full-text available
Left-right asymmetry is an important organizing feature of the healthy brain that may be altered in schizophrenia, but most studies have used relatively small samples and heterogeneous approaches, resulting in equivocal findings. We carried out the largest case-control study of structural brain asymmetries in schizophrenia, using MRI data from 5,08...
Article
Full-text available
Most people have a right-ear advantage for the perception of spoken syllables, consistent with left hemisphere dominance for speech processing. However, there is considerable variation, with some people showing left-ear advantage. The extent to which this variation is reflected in brain structure remains unclear. We tested for relations between hem...
Article
Purpose Common diagnostic next-generation sequencing strategies are not optimized to identify inherited variants in genes associated with dominant neurodevelopmental disorders as causal when the transmitting parent is clinically unaffected, leaving a significant number of cases with neurodevelopmental disorders undiagnosed. Methods We characterize...
Article
Full-text available
Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and schizophrenia have been conceived as partly opposing disorders in terms of systemizing vs. empathizing cognitive styles, with resemblances to male vs. female average sex differences. Left–right asymmetry of the brain is an important aspect of its organization that shows average differences between the sexes and ca...
Preprint
Full-text available
Cortical asymmetry is a ubiquitous feature of brain organization that is altered in neurodevelopmental disorders, yet we lack knowledge of how its development proceeds across life in health. Achieving consensus on cortical asymmetries in humans is necessary to uncover the genetic-developmental mechanisms that shape them and factors moderating corti...
Article
Full-text available
Temporal lobe epilepsy, a common drug-resistant epilepsy in adults, is primarily a limbic network disorder associated with predominant unilateral hippocampal pathology. Structural MRI has provided an in vivo window into whole-brain grey matter structural alterations in temporal lobe epilepsy relative to controls, by either mapping (i) atypical inte...
Preprint
Full-text available
The use of spoken and written language is a capacity that is unique to humans. Individual differences in reading- and language-related skills are influenced by genetic variation, with twin-based heritability estimates of 30-80%, depending on the trait. The relevant genetic architecture is complex, heterogeneous, and multifactorial, and yet to be in...
Preprint
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Interpretation of next-generation sequencing data of individuals with an apparent sporadic neurodevelopmental disorder (NDD) often focusses on pathogenic variants in genes associated with NDD, assuming full clinical penetrance with limited variable expressivity. Consequently, inherited variants in genes associated with dominant disorders may be ove...
Preprint
Full-text available
Reading and writing are crucial for many aspects of modern life but up to 1 in 10 children are affected by dyslexia, which can persist into adulthood. Family studies of dyslexia suggest heritability up to 70%, yet no convincing genetic markers have been found due to limited study power. Here, we present a genome-wide association study representing...
Article
Full-text available
Dyslexia is a common heritable developmental disorder involving impaired reading abilities. Its genetic underpinnings are thought to be complex and heterogeneous, involving common and rare genetic variation. Multigenerational families segregating apparent monogenic forms of language-related disorders can provide useful entrypoints into biological p...
Preprint
Full-text available
Roughly 10% of the human population is left-handed, and this rate is increased in some brain-related disorders. The neuroanatomical correlates of hand preference have remained equivocal. We re-sampled structural brain image data from 28,802 right-handers and 3,062 left-handers (UK Biobank population dataset) to a symmetrical surface template, and m...
Article
Full-text available
Developmental dyslexia (DD) is a learning disorder affecting the ability to read, with a heritability of 40-60%. A notable part of this heritability remains unexplained, and large genetic studies are warranted to identify new susceptibility genes and clarify the genetic bases of dyslexia. We carried out a genome-wide association study (GWAS) on 227...
Preprint
Full-text available
Temporal lobe epilepsy (TLE), a common drug-resistant epilepsy in adults, is primarily a limbic network disorder associated with predominant unilateral hippocampal pathology. Structural MRI has provided an in vivo window into whole-brain grey matter pathology in TLE relative to controls, by either mapping (i) atypical inter-hemispheric asymmetry or...
Preprint
Full-text available
Small average differences in the left-right asymmetry of cerebral cortical thickness have been reported in individuals with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) compared to typically developing controls. Although these alterations affect multiple and widespread cortical regional asymmetries, the extent to which specific structural networks might be affec...
Article
Full-text available
The human cerebral hemispheres show a left-right asymmetrical torque pattern, which has been claimed to be absent in chimpanzees. The functional significance and developmental mechanisms are unknown. Here, we carried out the largest-ever analysis of global brain shape asymmetry in magnetic resonance imaging data. Three population datasets were used...
Article
Full-text available
Objective: Some studies have suggested alterations of structural brain asymmetry in attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), but findings have been contradictory and based on small samples. Here, we performed the largest ever analysis of brain left-right asymmetry in ADHD, using 39 datasets of the ENIGMA consortium. Methods: We analyzed...
Preprint
Full-text available
Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and schizophrenia have been conceived as partly opposing disorders in terms of systemizing versus empathizing cognitive styles, with resemblances to male versus female average sex differences. Left-right asymmetry of the brain is an important aspect of its organization that shows average differences between the sexes,...
Article
Full-text available
Abstract This review summarizes the last decade of work by the ENIGMA (Enhancing NeuroImaging Genetics through Meta Analysis) Consortium, a global alliance of over 1400 scientists across 43 countries, studying the human brain in health and disease. Building on large-scale genetic studies that discovered the first robustly replicated genetic loci as...
Article
Full-text available
The problem of poor reproducibility of scientific findings has received much attention over recent years, in a variety of fields including psychology and neuroscience. The problem has been partly attributed to publication bias and unwanted practices such as p‐hacking. Low statistical power in individual studies is also understood to be an important...
Article
Full-text available
To understand the origins of interhemispheric differences and commonalities/coupling in human brain wiring, it is crucial to determine how homologous interregional connectivities of the left and right hemispheres are genetically determined and related. To address this, in the present study, we analyzed human twin and pedigree samples with high-qual...
Preprint
Full-text available
Most people have a right-ear advantage for the perception of spoken syllables, consistent with left hemisphere dominance for speech processing. However, there is considerable variation, with some people showing left-ear advantage. The extent to which this variation is reflected in brain structure remains unclear. We tested for relations between hem...
Preprint
Left-right hemispheric asymmetry is an important aspect of healthy brain organization for many functions including language, and can be altered in cognitive and psychiatric disorders1-8. No mechanism has yet been identified for establishing the human brain's left-right axis9. We performed multivariate genome-wide association scanning (mvGWAS) of co...
Article
Full-text available
Left–right asymmetry of the human brain is one of its cardinal features, and also a complex, multivariate trait. Decades of research have suggested that brain asymmetry may be altered in psychiatric disorders. However, findings have been inconsistent and often based on small sample sizes. There are also open questions surrounding which structures a...
Article
Full-text available
Neuroimaging has been extensively used to study brain structure and function in individuals with attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and autism spectrum disorder (ASD) over the past decades. Two of the main shortcomings of the neuroimaging literature of these disorders are the small sample sizes employed and the heterogeneity of methods...
Article
Full-text available
Neuroimaging has played an important part in advancing our understanding of the neurobiology of obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD). At the same time, neuroimaging studies of OCD have had notable limitations, including reliance on relatively small samples. International collaborative efforts to increase statistical power by combining samples from a...
Preprint
Full-text available
Objective: Some studies have suggested alterations of structural brain asymmetry in attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), but findings have been contradictory and based on small samples. Here we performed the largest-ever analysis of brain left-right asymmetry in ADHD, using 39 datasets of the ENIGMA consortium. Methods: We analyzed asym...
Article
Full-text available
Situs inversus (SI), a left-right mirror reversal of the visceral organs, can occur with recessive Primary Ciliary Dyskinesia (PCD). However, most people with SI do not have PCD, and the etiology of their condition remains poorly studied. We sequenced the genomes of 15 people with SI, of which six had PCD, as well as 15 controls. Subjects with non-...
Article
A pivotal question in modern neuroscience is which genes regulate brain circuits that underlie cognitive functions. However, the field is still in its infancy. Here we report an integrated investigation of the high-level language network (i.e., sentence processing network) in the human cerebral cortex, combining regional gene expression profiles, t...
Preprint
Left-right asymmetry of the human brain is one of its cardinal features, and also a complex, multivariate trait. Decades of research have suggested that brain asymmetry may be altered in psychiatric disorders. However, findings have been inconsistent and often based on modest sample sizes. There are also open questions surrounding which structures...
Preprint
Full-text available
The problem of poor reproducibility of scientific findings has received much attention over recent years, in a variety of fields including psychology and neuroscience. The problem has been partly attributed to publication bias and unwanted practices such as p-hacking. Low statistical power in individual studies is also understood to be an important...
Article
Full-text available
Subcortical brain structures are integral to motion, consciousness, emotions and learning. We identified common genetic variation related to the volumes of the nucleus accumbens, amygdala, brainstem, caudate nucleus, globus pallidus, putamen and thalamus, using genome-wide association analyses in almost 40,000 individuals from CHARGE, ENIGMA and UK...
Article
Previous studies have suggested that altered asymmetry of the planum temporale (PT) is associated with neurodevelopmental disorders, including dyslexia, schizophrenia, and autism. Shared genetic factors have been suggested to link PT asymmetry to these disorders. In a dataset of unrelated subjects from the general population (UK Biobank, N = 18,057...
Article
Subcortical brain structures are integral to motion, consciousness, emotions and learning. We identified common genetic variation related to the volumes of the nucleus accumbens, amygdala, brainstem, caudate nucleus, globus pallidus, putamen and thalamus, using genome-wide association analyses in almost 40,000 individuals from CHARGE, ENIGMA and UK...
Preprint
Full-text available
The average human brain is characterized by a global left-right asymmetry of shape, including a well-known 'torque' on the fronto-occipital axis, and less-studied differences on the dorsal-ventral axis. Torque has been claimed to be human-specific. However, the functional significance and developmental mechanisms underlying the global aspects of br...
Article
Objective: Asymmetry is a subtle but pervasive aspect of the human brain, and it may be altered in several psychiatric conditions. MRI studies have shown subtle differences of brain anatomy between people with major depressive disorder and healthy control subjects, but few studies have specifically examined brain anatomical asymmetry in relation t...
Preprint
Full-text available
This review summarizes the last decade of work by the ENIGMA (Enhancing NeuroImaging Genetics throughMeta Analysis) Consortium, a global alliance of over 1,400 scientists across 43 countries, studying the humanbrain in health and disease. Building on large-scale genetic studies that discovered the first robustly replicatedgenetic loci associated wi...
Article
Full-text available
Genetic investigations of people with impaired development of spoken language provide windows into key aspects of human biology. Over 15 years after FOXP2 was identified, most speech and language impairments remain unexplained at the molecular level. We sequenced whole genomes of nineteen unrelated individuals diagnosed with childhood apraxia of sp...
Article
Full-text available
In MRI scans of patients with anorexia nervosa (AN), reductions in brain volume are often apparent. However, it is unknown whether such brain abnormalities are influenced by genetic determinants that partially overlap with those underlying AN. Here, we used a battery of methods (LD score regression, genetic risk scores, sign test, SNP effect concor...
Preprint
Full-text available
Previous studies have suggested that altered asymmetry of the planum temporale (PT) is associated with neurodevelopmental disorders, including dyslexia, schizophrenia, and autism. Shared genetic factors have been suggested to link PT asymmetry to these disorders. In a dataset of unrelated subjects from the general population (UK Biobank, N= 18,057)...
Article
Full-text available
BACKGROUND Lateralized dysfunction has been suggested in obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD). However, it is currently unclear whether OCD is characterized by abnormal patterns of brain structural asymmetry. Here we carried out what is by far the largest study of brain structural asymmetry in OCD. METHODS We studied a collection of 16 pediatric dat...
Article
Full-text available
Background Rapid automatised naming (RAN) and rapid alternating stimulus (RAS) are reliable predictors of reading disability. The underlying biology of reading disability is poorly understood. However, the high correlation among RAN, RAS and reading could be attributable to shared genetic factors that contribute to common biological mechanisms. Ob...
Article
Full-text available
Hand preference is a prominent behavioural trait linked to human brain asymmetry. A handful of genetic variants have been reported to associate with hand preference or quantitative measures related to it. Most of these reports were on the basis of limited sample sizes, by current standards for genetic analysis of complex traits. Here we performed a...
Article
Full-text available
Most people have left‐hemisphere dominance for various aspects of language processing, but only roughly 1% of the adult population has atypically reversed, rightward hemispheric language dominance (RHLD). The genetic‐developmental program that underlies leftward language laterality is unknown, as are the causes of atypical variation. We performed a...
Presentation
Background: Lateralized dysfunction has been suggested in obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD). However, it is currently unclear whether OCD is characterized by abnormal patterns of brain structural asymmetry. Here we carried out what is by far the largest study of brain structural asymmetry in OCD. Methods: We studied a collection of 16 pediatri...
Preprint
Full-text available
Background: Left-right asymmetry is an important organizing feature of the healthy brain. Various studies have reported altered structural brain asymmetry in autism spectrum disorder (ASD). However, findings have been inconsistent, likely due to limited sample sizes and low statistical power. Methods: We investigated 1,774 subjects with ASD and 1,8...
Article
Full-text available
Developmental dyslexia (DD) is one of the most prevalent learning disorders, with high impact on school and psychosocial development and high comorbidity with conditions like attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), depression, and anxiety. DD is characterized by deficits in different cognitive skills, including word reading, spelling, rapi...