A Neuropsychological Profile for Agenesis of the Corpus Callosum?: Cognitive, Academic, Executive, Social, and Behavioral Functioning in School-Age Children

Vanessa Siffredi, Vicki A. Anderson, Alissandra McIlroy, Amanda Wood, Richard J Leventer, Megan Spencer-Smith

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objectives: Agenesis of the corpus callosum (AgCC), characterized by developmental absence of the corpus callosum, is one of the most common congenital brain malformations. To date, there are limited data on the neuropsychological consequences of AgCC and factors that modulate different outcomes, especially in children. This study aimed to describe general intellectual, academic, executive, social and behavioral functioning in a cohort of school-aged children presenting for clinical services to a hospital and diagnosed with AgCC. The influences of age, social risk and neurological factors were examined. Methods: Twenty-eight school-aged children (8 to 17 years) diagnosed with AgCC completed tests of general intelligence (IQ) and academic functioning. Executive, social and behavioral functioning in daily life, and social risk, were estimated from parent and teacher rated questionnaires. MRI findings reviewed by a pediatric neurologist confirmed diagnosis and identified brain characteristics. Clinical details including the presence of epilepsy and diagnosed genetic condition were obtained from medical records. Results: In our cohort, ~50% of children experienced general intellectual, academic, executive, social and/or behavioral difficulties and ~20% were functioning at a level comparable to typically developing children. Social risk was important for understanding variability in neuropsychological outcomes. Brain anomalies and complete AgCC were associated with lower mathematics performance and poorer executive functioning. Conclusions: This is the first comprehensive report of general intellectual, academic, executive social and behavioral consequences of AgCC in school-aged children. The findings have important clinical implications, suggesting that support to families and targeted intervention could promote positive neuropsychological functioning in children with AgCC who come to clinical attention.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)445-455
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of the International Neuropsychological Society
Issue number5
Early online date7 Mar 2018
Publication statusPublished - May 2018

Bibliographical note

This article has been published in a revised form in Journal of the International Neuropsychological Society, http://doi.org/10.1017/S1355617717001357. This version is free to view and download for private research and study only. Not for re-distribution, re-sale or use in derivative works. © The International Neuropsychological Society 2018.

Funding: Victorian Government’s Operational Infrastructure Support Program, Murdoch Children's Research Institute, Geneva Academic Society, Swiss National Science Foundation, Australian National Health and Medical Research Council.


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