Meltzer lab

Parallel brain pathways for language

Neurological disorders that affect language use have a devastating effect on a person’s independence. Recovery of language abilities is possible in some patients, although therapy is not always effective at improving function. Recent research suggests that there are multiple pathways in the brain that handle language, and that some compensation for brain damage is possible through increased reliance on alternative pathways. Therefore, language therapy may be more effective if it can target a patient’s preserved pathways. This project uses advanced brain imaging methods to study how healthy people use two different brain networks while understanding and producing language, providing a way to measure an individual’s reliance on each one. We will compare younger and older adults to test whether aging adults can increase the use of one pathway to compensate for declines in the other. Additionally, we will examine patients with mild language deficits to reveal the changes in brain activity related to these deficits, and the role of compensatory changes.


Dr. Jed Meltzer

Research Assistant:

Lily Panamsky

Post-doctoral Fellow:

Aneta Kielar

General Inquiries

Phone: 416-785-2500 ext. 3561
Fax: (416) 785-2862


The Rotman Research Institute


3560 Bathurst Street

Toronto, Ontario, M6A 2E1

Volunteering Opportunities

Phone: 416-785-2500 ext. 2080