Ian J Deary, Lars Penke, and Wendy Johnson (2010)

The neuroscience of human intelligence differences

Nature Reviews Neuroscience, 11:201-211.

Neuroscience is contributing to an understanding of the biological bases of human intelligence differences. This work is principally being conducted along two empirical fronts: genetics - quantitative and molecular - and brain imaging. Quantitative genetic studies have established that there are additive genetic contributions to different aspects of cognitive ability - especially general intelligence - and how they change through the lifespan. Molecular genetic studies have yet to identify reliably reproducible contributions from individual genes. Structural and functional brain-imaging studies have identified differences in brain pathways, especially parieto-frontal pathways, that contribute to intelligence differences. There is also evidence that brain efficiency correlates positively with intelligence.