Young adult female fragile X premutation carriers show age- and genetically-modulated cognitive impairments

Naomi J. Goodrich-Hunsaker, Ling M. Wong, Yingratana McLennan, Siddharth Srivastava, Flora Tassone, Danielle J Harvey, Susan M. Rivera, Tony J Simon

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

63 Scopus citations


The high frequency of the fragile X premutation in the general population and its emerging neurocognitive implications highlight the need to investigate the effects of the premutation on lifespan cognitive development. Until recently, cognitive function in fragile X premutation carriers (fXPCs) was presumed to be unaffected by the mutation. Here we show that young adult female fXPCs show subtle, yet significant, age- and FMR1 gene mutation-modulated cognitive impairments as tested by a quantitative magnitude comparison task. Our results begin to define the neurocognitive endophenotype associated with the premutation in adults, who are at risk for developing a neurodegenerative disorder associated with the fragile X premutation. Results from the present study may potentially be applied toward the design of early interventions wherein we might be able to target premutation carriers most at risk for degeneration for preventive treatment.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)255-260
Number of pages6
JournalBrain and Cognition
Issue number3
StatePublished - Apr 2011


  • Adult
  • Fragile X premutation carrier
  • Magnitude
  • Numerical
  • Parietal lobe
  • Spatial
  • Women

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cognitive Neuroscience
  • Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
  • Neuropsychology and Physiological Psychology


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