Neonatology pp 265-275 | Cite as

Cerebral Plasticity and Functional Reorganization in Children with Congenital Brain Lesions

  • Viviana MarchiEmail author
  • Andrea Guzzetta
  • Giovanni Cioni
Reference work entry


Mechanisms of cerebral plasticity are more powerful during development. This however does not necessarily lead to better outcomes in case of early brain injuries, as opposed to later ones, due to the complex interaction of brain plasticity, vulnerability, and maturation. A deep understanding of the mechanisms underlying the reorganization of brain functions after early damage will give us the opportunity to target the intervention in terms of timing, quality, and duration so to maximize the processes of adaptive plasticity and limit the maladaptive ones. New techniques of advanced brain mapping are providing a unique opportunity to explore this matter in humans, both in the acute and post-acute phase, during the early stages of development, and in the chronic phase, when the plastic reorganization has for a large part already occurred. We will review here the current knowledge on the main mechanisms of plastic reorganization in subjects with congenital lesions, with particular reference to the language, sensorimotor, and visual systems. The main differences with the effects of later injuries will be underlined.


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Viviana Marchi
    • 1
    • 2
    Email author
  • Andrea Guzzetta
    • 1
    • 2
  • Giovanni Cioni
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.IRCCS Stella MarisDepartment of Developmental NeurosciencePisaItaly
  2. 2.University of PisaDepartment of Clinical and Experimental NeurosciencePisaItaly

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