WorldWideScience

Sample records for brain sex differences

  1. Sex Differences in the Adolescent Brain

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lenroot, Rhoshel K.; Giedd, Jay N.

    2010-01-01

    Adolescence is a time of increased divergence between males and females in physical characteristics, behavior, and risk for psychopathology. Here we will review data regarding sex differences in brain structure and function during this period of the lifespan. The most consistent sex difference in brain morphometry is the 9-12% larger brain size…

  2. Sexing the Brain: The Science and Pseudoscience of Sex Differences

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lesley J. Rogers

    2010-06-01

    Full Text Available A recent upsurge in unitary biological explanations for gender differences in behavior (i.e. that they are “hard-wired” in the genetic code, put forward not only in books written for a general audience but also in scientific papers, makes it important to examine the fallacies of these ideas. Such genetic and hormonal explanations of human behavior, formulated with little consideration of the influences of experience, and often without taking experience into account at all, are part of a new wave of genetic explanations for a broad range of human behavior, as explained in the paper. These ideas are far from new; moreover, they are pseudoscientific and are used for political influence under the guise of science. They are a conservative social force that maintains social and educational inequalities between women and men. This paper explains that causal explanations of differences between the sexes are of two completely different types: unitary (genetic determinist versus interactive explanations. The false reasoning used to support genetic determinist explanations of sex differences in behavior is discussed. To illustrate what biology really tells us about gender differentiation, the paper discusses the interactive roles of genetic, hormonal and environmental influences on the development of gender differences. These interactions are illustrated using two model biological systems (e.g. the intertwined influences of genes, sex hormones and experience on the development of sex differences in behavior in rats, and sex differences in neuronal connections in chickens. There is plenty of scientific evidence to show the complex interactive, and ever changing, influences of experience and genes that take place as an organism develops and throughout its life. Malleability of brain and behavior can be shown clearly using animal models, and the processes involved apply also to the development of brain and behavior in humans. We diminish our understanding

  3. Sex differences in the brain-an interplay of sex steroid hormones and sex chromosomes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grgurevic, Neza; Majdic, Gregor

    2016-09-01

    Although considerable progress has been made in our understanding of brain function, many questions remain unanswered. The ultimate goal of studying the brain is to understand the connection between brain structure and function and behavioural outcomes. Since sex differences in brain morphology were first observed, subsequent studies suggest different functional organization of the male and female brains in humans. Sex and gender have been identified as being a significant factor in understanding human physiology, health and disease, and the biological differences between the sexes is not limited to the gonads and secondary sexual characteristics, but also affects the structure and, more crucially, the function of the brain and other organs. Significant variability in brain structures between individuals, in addition to between the sexes, is factor that complicates the study of sex differences in the brain. In this review, we explore the current understanding of sex differences in the brain, mostly focusing on preclinical animal studies. © 2016 The Author(s). published by Portland Press Limited on behalf of the Biochemical Society.

  4. Sex differences in brain organization: implications for human communication.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hanske-Petitpierre, V; Chen, A C

    1985-12-01

    This article reviews current knowledge in two major research domains: sex differences in neuropsychophysiology, and in human communication. An attempt was made to integrate knowledge from several areas of brain research with human communication and to clarify how such a cooperative effort may be beneficial to both fields of study. By combining findings from the area of brain research, a communication paradigm was developed which contends that brain-related sex differences may reside largely in the area of communication of emotion.

  5. At the Frontier of Epigenetics of Brain Sex Differences

    OpenAIRE

    Margaret M Mccarthy; Bridget M Nugent

    2015-01-01

    The notion that epigenetics may play an important role in the establishment and maintenance of sex differences in the brain has garnered great enthusiasm but the reality in terms of actual advances has been slow. Two general approaches include the comparison of a particular epigenetic mark in males vs. females and the inhibition of key epigenetic enzymes or co-factors to determine if this eliminates a particular sex difference in brain or behavior. The majority of emphasis has been on candida...

  6. Sex differences in the brain, behavior, and neuropsychiatric disorders

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bao, Ai-Min; Swaab, Dick F.

    2010-01-01

    Sex differences in the brain are reflected in behavior and in the risk for neuropsychiatric disorders. The fetal brain develops in the male direction due to a direct effect of testosterone on the developing neurons, or in the female direction due to the absence of such a testosterone surge. Because

  7. Sex differences in normal age trajectories of functional brain networks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scheinost, Dustin; Finn, Emily S; Tokoglu, Fuyuze; Shen, Xilin; Papademetris, Xenophon; Hampson, Michelle; Constable, R Todd

    2015-04-01

    Resting-state functional magnetic resonance image (rs-fMRI) is increasingly used to study functional brain networks. Nevertheless, variability in these networks due to factors such as sex and aging is not fully understood. This study explored sex differences in normal age trajectories of resting-state networks (RSNs) using a novel voxel-wise measure of functional connectivity, the intrinsic connectivity distribution (ICD). Males and females showed differential patterns of changing connectivity in large-scale RSNs during normal aging from early adulthood to late middle-age. In some networks, such as the default-mode network, males and females both showed decreases in connectivity with age, albeit at different rates. In other networks, such as the fronto-parietal network, males and females showed divergent connectivity trajectories with age. Main effects of sex and age were found in many of the same regions showing sex-related differences in aging. Finally, these sex differences in aging trajectories were robust to choice of preprocessing strategy, such as global signal regression. Our findings resolve some discrepancies in the literature, especially with respect to the trajectory of connectivity in the default mode, which can be explained by our observed interactions between sex and aging. Overall, results indicate that RSNs show different aging trajectories for males and females. Characterizing effects of sex and age on RSNs are critical first steps in understanding the functional organization of the human brain. © 2014 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  8. Sex differences in the structural connectome of the human brain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ingalhalikar, Madhura; Smith, Alex; Parker, Drew; Satterthwaite, Theodore D; Elliott, Mark A; Ruparel, Kosha; Hakonarson, Hakon; Gur, Raquel E; Gur, Ruben C; Verma, Ragini

    2014-01-14

    Sex differences in human behavior show adaptive complementarity: Males have better motor and spatial abilities, whereas females have superior memory and social cognition skills. Studies also show sex differences in human brains but do not explain this complementarity. In this work, we modeled the structural connectome using diffusion tensor imaging in a sample of 949 youths (aged 8-22 y, 428 males and 521 females) and discovered unique sex differences in brain connectivity during the course of development. Connection-wise statistical analysis, as well as analysis of regional and global network measures, presented a comprehensive description of network characteristics. In all supratentorial regions, males had greater within-hemispheric connectivity, as well as enhanced modularity and transitivity, whereas between-hemispheric connectivity and cross-module participation predominated in females. However, this effect was reversed in the cerebellar connections. Analysis of these changes developmentally demonstrated differences in trajectory between males and females mainly in adolescence and in adulthood. Overall, the results suggest that male brains are structured to facilitate connectivity between perception and coordinated action, whereas female brains are designed to facilitate communication between analytical and intuitive processing modes.

  9. Population and sex differences in Drosophila melanogaster brain gene expression

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Catalán Ana

    2012-11-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Changes in gene regulation are thought to be crucial for the adaptation of organisms to their environment. Transcriptome analyses can be used to identify candidate genes for ecological adaptation, but can be complicated by variation in gene expression between tissues, sexes, or individuals. Here we use high-throughput RNA sequencing of a single Drosophila melanogaster tissue to detect brain-specific differences in gene expression between the sexes and between two populations, one from the ancestral species range in sub-Saharan Africa and one from the recently colonized species range in Europe. Results Relatively few genes (Cyp6g1 and CHKov1. Conclusions Analysis of the brain transcriptome revealed many genes differing in expression between populations that were not detected in previous studies using whole flies. There was little evidence for sex-specific regulatory adaptation in the brain, as most expression differences between populations were observed in both males and females. The enrichment of genes with sexually dimorphic expression on the X chromosome is consistent with dosage compensation mechanisms affecting sex-biased expression in somatic tissues.

  10. At the Frontier of Epigenetics of Brain Sex Differences

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Margaret M Mccarthy

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available The notion that epigenetics may play an important role in the establishment and maintenance of sex differences in the brain has garnered great enthusiasm but the reality in terms of actual advances have been slow. Two general approaches include the comparison of a particular epigenetic mark in males versus females and the inhibition of key epigenetic enzymes or co-factors to determine if this eliminates a particular sex difference in brain or behavior. The majority of emphasis has been on candidate genes such as steroid receptors. Only recently have more generalized survey type approaches been achieved and these promise to open new vista’s and accelerate discovery of important roles for DNA methylation, histone modification and microRNAs. Technical challenges abound and while not unique to this field will require novel thinking and new approaches by behavioral neuroendocrinogists.

  11. Sex Differences in Serotonin 1 Receptor Binding in Rat Brain

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fischette, Christine T.; Biegon, Anat; McEwen, Bruce S.

    1983-10-01

    Male and female rats exhibit sex differences in binding by serotonin 1 receptors in discrete areas of the brain, some of which have been implicated in the control of ovulation and of gonadotropin release. The sex-specific changes in binding, which occur in response to the same hormonal (estrogenic) stimulus, are due to changes in the number of binding sites. Castration alone also affects the number of binding sites in certain areas. The results lead to the conclusion that peripheral hormones modulate binding by serotonin 1 receptors. The status of the serotonin receptor system may affect the reproductive capacity of an organism and may be related to sex-linked emotional disturbances in humans.

  12. Sex differences in impulsivity and brain morphometry in methamphetamine users.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kogachi, Shannon; Chang, Linda; Alicata, Daniel; Cunningham, Eric; Ernst, Thomas

    2017-01-01

    Methamphetamine (METH) is an addictive stimulant, and METH users have abnormal brain structures and function. The aims of this study were to investigate the relationships between impulsivity, brain structures, and possible sex-specific differences between METH users and non-drug using Controls. Structural MRI and the Barratt Impulsiveness Scale (BIS) questionnaire were completed in 124 subjects: 62 METH (ages 41.2 ± 1.4 years, 34 males) and 62 Controls (ages 43.3 ± 2.3 years, 36 males). Independent and interactive effects of METH use status and sex were evaluated. Relationships between METH usage characteristics, brain morphometry, and impulsivity scores were examined. METH users had higher impulsivity scores, on both the Cognitive and Behavioral Factors from the BIS (p impulsivity (interaction-p ≤ 0.05). Only female METH users showed relatively larger nucleus accumbens (interaction-p = 0.03). Greater impulsivity and thinner frontal cortices in METH users are validated. Larger superior frontal cortex in male METH users with greater cognitive impulsivity suggest decreased dendritic pruning during adolescence might have contributed to their impulsive and drug use behaviors. In the female METH users, smaller frontal cortices and the associated greater impulsivity suggest greater neurotoxicity to these brain regions, while their relatively larger nucleus accumbens suggest an estrogen-mediated neuroprotective glial response. Men and women may be affected differently by METH use.

  13. Neural, not gonadal, origin of brain sex differences in a gynandromorphic finch

    OpenAIRE

    Agate, Robert J.; Grisham, William; Wade, Juli; Mann, Suzanne; Wingfield, John; Schanen, Carolyn; Palotie, Aarno; Arnold, Arthur P.

    2003-01-01

    In mammals and birds, sex differences in brain function and disease are thought to derive exclusively from sex differences in gonadal hormone secretions. For example, testosterone in male mammals acts during fetal and neonatal life to cause masculine neural development. However, male and female brain cells also differ in genetic sex; thus, sex chromosome genes acting within cells could contribute to sex differences in cell function. We analyzed the sexual phenotype of the brain of a rare gyna...

  14. Understanding the broad influence of sex hormones and sex differences in the brain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McEwen, Bruce S; Milner, Teresa A

    2017-01-02

    Sex hormones act throughout the entire brain of both males and females via both genomic and nongenomic receptors. Sex hormones can act through many cellular and molecular processes that alter structure and function of neural systems and influence behavior as well as providing neuroprotection. Within neurons, sex hormone receptors are found in nuclei and are also located near membranes, where they are associated with presynaptic terminals, mitochondria, spine apparatus, and postsynaptic densities. Sex hormone receptors also are found in glial cells. Hormonal regulation of a variety of signaling pathways as well as direct and indirect effects on gene expression induce spine synapses, up- or downregulate and alter the distribution of neurotransmitter receptors, and regulate neuropeptide expression and cholinergic and GABAergic activity as well as calcium sequestration and oxidative stress. Many neural and behavioral functions are affected, including mood, cognitive function, blood pressure regulation, motor coordination, pain, and opioid sensitivity. Subtle sex differences exist for many of these functions that are developmentally programmed by hormones and by not yet precisely defined genetic factors, including the mitochondrial genome. These sex differences and responses to sex hormones in brain regions, which influence functions not previously regarded as subject to such differences, indicate that we are entering a new era of our ability to understand and appreciate the diversity of gender-related behaviors and brain functions. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  15. Sex differences in impulsivity and brain morphometry in methamphetamine users

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kogachi, Shannon; Chang, Linda; Alicata, Daniel; Cunningham, Eric; Ernst, Thomas

    2016-01-01

    Methamphetamine (METH) is an addictive stimulant, and METH users have abnormal brain structures and function. The aims of this study were to investigate the relationships between impulsivity, brain structures, and possible sex-specific differences between METH users and non-drug using Controls. Structural MRI and the Barratt Impulsiveness Scale (BIS) questionnaire were completed in 124 subjects: 62 METH (ages 41.2 ± 1.4 years, 34 males) and 62 Controls (ages 43.3 ± 2.3 years, 36 males). Independent and interactive effects of METH use status and sex were evaluated. Relationships between METH usage characteristics, brain morphometry, and impulsivity scores were examined. METH users had higher impulsivity scores, on both the Cognitive and Behavioral Factors from the BIS (p users had larger, while female METH users had smaller, right superior frontal cortex (interaction-p = 0.0005). The male METH users with larger frontal volumes and female METH users with smaller or thinner frontal cortices had greater Cognitive impulsivity (interaction-p ≤ 0.05). Only female METH users showed relatively larger nucleus accumbens (interaction-p = 0.03). Greater impulsivity and thinner frontal cortices in METH users are validated. Larger superior frontal cortex in male METH users with greater cognitive impulsivity suggest decreased dendritic pruning during adolescence might have contributed to their impulsive and drug use behaviors. In the female METH users, smaller frontal cortices and the associated greater impulsivity suggest greater neurotoxicity to these brain regions, while their relatively larger nucleus accumbens suggest an estrogen-mediated neuroprotective glial response. Men and women may be affected differently by METH use. PMID:27095357

  16. Sex Differences in White Matter Microstructure in the Human Brain Predominantly Reflect Differences in Sex Hormone Exposure

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van Hemmen, J; Saris, I M J; Cohen-Kettenis, P T; Veltman, D J; Pouwels, P J W; Bakker, J

    Sex differences have been described regarding several aspects of human brain morphology; however, the exact biological mechanisms underlying these differences remain unclear in humans. Women with the complete androgen insensitivity syndrome (CAIS), who lack androgen action in the presence of a 46,XY

  17. A systematic literature review of sex differences in childhood language and brain development.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Etchell, Andrew; Adhikari, Aditi; Weinberg, Lauren S; Choo, Ai Leen; Garnett, Emily O; Chow, Ho Ming; Chang, Soo-Eun

    2018-06-01

    The extent of sex differences in childhood language development is unclear. We conducted a systematic literature review synthesizing results from studies examining sex differences in brain structure and function relevant to language development during childhood. We searched PubMed and Scopus databases, and this returned a total of 46 published studies meeting criteria for inclusion that directly examined sex differences in brain development relevant to language function in children. The results indicate that: (a) sex differences in brain structure or function do not necessarily lead to differences in language task performance; (b) evidence for sex differences in brain and language development are limited; (c) when present, sex differences often interact with a variety of factors such as age and task. Overall, the magnitude of sexual dimorphism of brain developmental trajectories associated with language is not as significant as previously thought. Sex differences were found, however, in studies employing tighter age ranges. This suggests that sex differences may be more prominent during certain developmental stages but are negligible in other stages, likely due to different rates of maturation between the sexes. More research is needed to improve our understanding of how sex differences may arise due to the influence of sex hormones and developmental stages, and how these differences may lead to differences in various language task performance. These studies are expected to provide normative information that may be used in studies examining neurodevelopmental disorders that frequently affect more males than females, and also often affect language development. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  18. A starring role for microglia in brain sex differences.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lenz, Kathryn M; McCarthy, Margaret M

    2015-06-01

    Microglia, the resident innate immune cells in the brain, have long been understood to be crucial to maintenance in the nervous system, by clearing debris, monitoring for infiltration of infectious agents, and mediating the brain's inflammatory and repair response to traumatic injury, stroke, or neurodegeneration. A wave of new research has shown that microglia are also active players in many basic processes in the healthy brain, including cell proliferation, synaptic connectivity, and physiology. Microglia, both in their capacity as phagocytic cells and via secretion of many neuroactive molecules, including cytokines and growth factors, play a central role in early brain development, including sexual differentiation of the brain. In this review, we present the vast roles microglia play in normal brain development and how perturbations in the normal neuroimmune environment during development may contribute to the etiology of brain-based disorders. There are notable differences between microglia and neuroimmune signaling in the male and female brain throughout the life span, and these differences may contribute to the vast differences in the incidence of neuropsychiatric and neurological disorders between males and females. © The Author(s) 2014.

  19. Sex Differences in the Effects of Unilateral Brain Damage on Intelligence

    Science.gov (United States)

    Inglis, James; Lawson, J. S.

    1981-05-01

    A sexual dimorphism in the functional asymmetry of the damaged human brain is reflected in a test-specific laterality effect in male but not in female patients. This sex difference explains some contradictions concerning the effects of unilateral brain damage on intelligence in studies in which the influence of sex was overlooked.

  20. Beyond sex differences: new approaches for thinking about variation in brain structure and function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Joel, Daphna; Fausto-Sterling, Anne

    2016-02-19

    In the study of variation in brain structure and function that might relate to sex and gender, language matters because it frames our research questions and methods. In this article, we offer an approach to thinking about variation in brain structure and function that pulls us outside the sex differences formulation. We argue that the existence of differences between the brains of males and females does not unravel the relations between sex and the brain nor is it sufficient to characterize a population of brains. Such characterization is necessary for studying sex effects on the brain as well as for studying brain structure and function in general. Animal studies show that sex interacts with environmental, developmental and genetic factors to affect the brain. Studies of humans further suggest that human brains are better described as belonging to a single heterogeneous population rather than two distinct populations. We discuss the implications of these observations for studies of brain and behaviour in humans and in laboratory animals. We believe that studying sex effects in context and developing or adopting analytical methods that take into account the heterogeneity of the brain are crucial for the advancement of human health and well-being. © 2016 The Author(s).

  1. Vasopressin and oxytocin receptor systems in the brain: Sex differences and sex-specific regulation of social behavior.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dumais, Kelly M; Veenema, Alexa H

    2016-01-01

    The neuropeptides vasopressin (VP) and oxytocin (OT) and their receptors in the brain are involved in the regulation of various social behaviors and have emerged as drug targets for the treatment of social dysfunction in several sex-biased neuropsychiatric disorders. Sex differences in the VP and OT systems may therefore be implicated in sex-specific regulation of healthy as well as impaired social behaviors. We begin this review by highlighting the sex differences, or lack of sex differences, in VP and OT synthesis in the brain. We then discuss the evidence showing the presence or absence of sex differences in VP and OT receptors in rodents and humans, as well as showing new data of sexually dimorphic V1a receptor binding in the rat brain. Importantly, we find that there is lack of comprehensive analysis of sex differences in these systems in common laboratory species, and we find that, when sex differences are present, they are highly brain region- and species-specific. Interestingly, VP system parameters (VP and V1aR) are typically higher in males, while sex differences in the OT system are not always in the same direction, often showing higher OT expression in females, but higher OT receptor expression in males. Furthermore, VP and OT receptor systems show distinct and largely non-overlapping expression in the rodent brain, which may cause these receptors to have either complementary or opposing functional roles in the sex-specific regulation of social behavior. Though still in need of further research, we close by discussing how manipulations of the VP and OT systems have given important insights into the involvement of these neuropeptide systems in the sex-specific regulation of social behavior in rodents and humans. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  2. Vasopressin and oxytocin receptor systems in the brain: sex differences and sex-specific regulation of social behavior

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dumais, Kelly M.; Veenema, Alexa H.

    2015-01-01

    The neuropeptides vasopressin (VP) and oxytocin (OT) and their receptors in the brain are involved in the regulation of various social behaviors and have emerged as drug targets for the treatment of social dysfunction in several sex-biased neuropsychiatric disorders. Sex differences in the VP and OT systems may therefore be implicated in sex-specific regulation of healthy as well as impaired social behaviors. We begin this review by highlighting the sex differences, or lack of sex differences, in VP and OT synthesis in the brain. We then discuss the evidence showing the presence or absence of sex differences in VP and OT receptors in rodents and humans, as well as showing new data of sexually dimorphic V1a receptor binding in the rat brain. Importantly, we find that there is lack of comprehensive analysis of sex differences in these systems in common laboratory species, and we find that, when sex differences are present, they are highly brain region- and species- specific. Interestingly, VP system parameters (VP and V1aR) are typically higher in males, while sex differences in the OT system are not always in the same direction, often showing higher OT expression in females, but higher OT receptor expression in males. Furthermore, VP and OT receptor systems show distinct and largely non-overlapping expression in the rodent brain, which may cause these receptors to have either complementary or opposing functional roles in the sex-specific regulation of social behavior. Though still in need of further research, we close by discussing how manipulations of the VP and OT systems have given important insights into the involvement of these neuropeptide systems in the sex-specific regulation of social behavior in rodents and humans. PMID:25951955

  3. Sex-based differences in brain alterations across chronic pain conditions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gupta, Arpana; Mayer, Emeran A; Fling, Connor; Labus, Jennifer S; Naliboff, Bruce D; Hong, Jui-Yang; Kilpatrick, Lisa A

    2017-01-02

    Common brain mechanisms are thought to play a significant role across a multitude of chronic pain syndromes. In addition, there is strong evidence for the existence of sex differences in the prevalence of chronic pain and in the neurobiology of pain. Thus, it is important to consider sex when developing general principals of pain neurobiology. The goal of the current Mini-Review is to evaluate what is known about sex-specific brain alterations across multiple chronic pain populations. A total of 15 sex difference and 143 single-sex articles were identified from among 412 chronic pain neuroimaging articles. Results from sex difference studies indicate more prominent primary sensorimotor structural and functional alterations in female chronic pain patients compared with male chronic pain patients: differences in the nature and degree of insula alterations, with greater insula reactivity in male patients; differences in the degree of anterior cingulate structural alterations; and differences in emotional-arousal reactivity. Qualitative comparisons of male-specific and female-specific studies appear to be consistent with the results from sex difference studies. Given these differences, mixed-sex studies of chronic pain risk creating biased data or missing important information and single-sex studies have limited generalizability. The advent of large-scale neuroimaging databases will likely aid in building a more comprehensive understanding of sex differences and commonalities in brain mechanisms underlying chronic pain. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  4. Evolving knowledge of sex differences in brain structure, function, and chemistry.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cosgrove, Kelly P; Mazure, Carolyn M; Staley, Julie K

    2007-10-15

    Clinical and epidemiologic evidence demonstrates sex differences in the prevalence and course of various psychiatric disorders. Understanding sex-specific brain differences in healthy individuals is a critical first step toward understanding sex-specific expression of psychiatric disorders. Here, we evaluate evidence on sex differences in brain structure, chemistry, and function using imaging methodologies, including functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), positron emission tomography (PET), single photon emission computed tomography (SPECT), and structural magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) in mentally healthy individuals. MEDLINE searches of English-language literature (1980-November 2006) using the terms sex, gender, PET, SPECT, MRI, fMRI, morphometry, neurochemistry, and neurotransmission were performed to extract relevant sources. The literature suggests that while there are many similarities in brain structure, function, and neurotransmission in healthy men and women, there are important differences that distinguish the male from the female brain. Overall, brain volume is greater in men than women; yet, when controlling for total volume, women have a higher percentage of gray matter and men a higher percentage of white matter. Regional volume differences are less consistent. Global cerebral blood flow is higher in women than in men. Sex-specific differences in dopaminergic, serotonergic, and gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA)ergic markers indicate that male and female brains are neurochemically distinct. Insight into the etiology of sex differences in the normal living human brain provides an important foundation to delineate the pathophysiological mechanisms underlying sex differences in neuropsychiatric disorders and to guide the development of sex-specific treatments for these devastating brain disorders.

  5. A meta-analysis of sex differences in human brain structure.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ruigrok, Amber N V; Salimi-Khorshidi, Gholamreza; Lai, Meng-Chuan; Baron-Cohen, Simon; Lombardo, Michael V; Tait, Roger J; Suckling, John

    2014-02-01

    The prevalence, age of onset, and symptomatology of many neuropsychiatric conditions differ between males and females. To understand the causes and consequences of sex differences it is important to establish where they occur in the human brain. We report the first meta-analysis of typical sex differences on global brain volume, a descriptive account of the breakdown of studies of each compartmental volume by six age categories, and whole-brain voxel-wise meta-analyses on brain volume and density. Gaussian-process regression coordinate-based meta-analysis was used to examine sex differences in voxel-based regional volume and density. On average, males have larger total brain volumes than females. Examination of the breakdown of studies providing total volumes by age categories indicated a bias towards the 18-59 year-old category. Regional sex differences in volume and tissue density include the amygdala, hippocampus and insula, areas known to be implicated in sex-biased neuropsychiatric conditions. Together, these results suggest candidate regions for investigating the asymmetric effect that sex has on the developing brain, and for understanding sex-biased neurological and psychiatric conditions. Copyright © 2014 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd.. All rights reserved.

  6. A meta-analysis of sex differences in human brain structure☆

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ruigrok, Amber N.V.; Salimi-Khorshidi, Gholamreza; Lai, Meng-Chuan; Baron-Cohen, Simon; Lombardo, Michael V.; Tait, Roger J.; Suckling, John

    2014-01-01

    The prevalence, age of onset, and symptomatology of many neuropsychiatric conditions differ between males and females. To understand the causes and consequences of sex differences it is important to establish where they occur in the human brain. We report the first meta-analysis of typical sex differences on global brain volume, a descriptive account of the breakdown of studies of each compartmental volume by six age categories, and whole-brain voxel-wise meta-analyses on brain volume and density. Gaussian-process regression coordinate-based meta-analysis was used to examine sex differences in voxel-based regional volume and density. On average, males have larger total brain volumes than females. Examination of the breakdown of studies providing total volumes by age categories indicated a bias towards the 18–59 year-old category. Regional sex differences in volume and tissue density include the amygdala, hippocampus and insula, areas known to be implicated in sex-biased neuropsychiatric conditions. Together, these results suggest candidate regions for investigating the asymmetric effect that sex has on the developing brain, and for understanding sex-biased neurological and psychiatric conditions. PMID:24374381

  7. Sex differences in the developing brain as a source of inherent risk.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCarthy, Margaret M

    2016-12-01

    Brain development diverges in males and females in response to androgen production by the fetal testis. This sexual differentiation of the brain occurs during a sensitive window and induces enduring neuroanatomical and physiological changes that profoundly impact behavior. What we know about the contribution of sex chromosomes is still emerging, highlighting the need to integrate multiple factors into understanding sex differences, including the importance of context. The cellular mechanisms are best modeled in rodents and have provided both unifying principles and surprising specifics. Markedly distinct signaling pathways direct differentiation in specific brain regions, resulting in mosaicism of relative maleness, femaleness, and sameness through-out the brain, while canalization both exaggerates and constrains sex differences. Non-neuronal cells and inflammatory mediators are found in greater number and at higher levels in parts of male brains. This higher baseline of inflammation is speculated to increase male vulnerability to developmental neuropsychiatric disorders that are triggered by inflammation.

  8. Differences in postmortem stability of sex steroid receptor immunoreactivity in rat brain

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Fodor, Mariann; van Leeuwen, Fred W.; Swaab, Dick F.

    2002-01-01

    Difficulties in demonstrating sex steroid receptors in the human brain by immunohistochemistry (IHC) may depend on postmortem delay and a long fixation time. The effect of different postmortem times was therefore studied in rat brain kept in the skull at room temperature for 0, 6, or 24 hr after

  9. Sex on the brain: Are gender-dependent structural and functional differences associated with behavior?

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    Grabowska, Anna

    2017-01-02

    A substantial number of studies provide evidence documenting a variety of sex differences in the brain. It remains unclear whether sexual differentiation at the neural level is related to that observed in daily behavior, cognitive function, and the risk of developing certain psychiatric and neurological disorders. Some investigators have questioned whether the brain is truly sexually differentiated and support this view with several arguments including the following: (1) brain structural or functional differences are not necessarily reflected in appropriate differences at the behavioral level, which might suggest that these two phenomena are not linked to each other; and (2) sex-related differences in the brain are rather small and concern features that significantly overlap between males and females. This review polemicizes with those opinions and presents examples of sex-related local neural differences underpinning a variety of sex differences in behaviors, skills, and cognitive/emotional abilities. Although male/female brain differentiation may vary in pattern and scale, nonetheless, in some respects (e.g., relative local gray matter volumes) it can be substantial, taking the form of sexual dimorphism and involving large areas of the brain (the cortex in particular). A significant part of this review is devoted to arguing that some sex differences in the brain may serve to prevent (in the case where they are maladaptive), rather than to produce, differences at the behavioral/skill level. Specifically, some differences might result from compensatory mechanisms aimed at maintaining similar intellectual capacities across the sexes, despite the smaller average volume of the brain in females compared with males. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  10. Neuroimmunology and neuroepigenetics in the establishment of sex differences in the brain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCarthy, Margaret M; Nugent, Bridget M; Lenz, Kathryn M

    2017-08-01

    The study of sex differences in the brain is a topic of neuroscientific study that has broad reaching implications for culture, society and biomedical science. Recent research in rodent models has led to dramatic shifts in our views of the mechanisms underlying the sexual differentiation of the brain. These include the surprising discoveries of a role for immune cells and inflammatory mediators in brain masculinization and a role for epigenetic suppression in brain feminization. How and to what degree these findings will translate to human brain development will be questions of central importance in future research in this field.

  11. Complementarity of sex differences in brain and behavior: From laterality to multimodal neuroimaging.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gur, Ruben C; Gur, Raquel E

    2017-01-02

    Although, overwhelmingly, behavior is similar in males and females, and, correspondingly, the brains are similar, sex differences permeate both brain and behavioral measures, and these differences have been the focus of increasing scrutiny by neuroscientists. This Review describes milestones from more than 3 decades of research in brain and behavior. This research was necessarily bound by available methodology, and we began with indirect behavioral indicators of brain function such as handedness. We proceeded to the use of neuropsychological batteries and then to structural and functional neuroimaging that provided the foundations of a cognitive neuroscience-based computerized neurocognitive battery. Sex differences were apparent and consistent in neurocognitive measures, with females performing better on memory and social cognition tasks and males on spatial processing and motor speed. Sex differences were also prominent in all major brain parameters, including higher rates of cerebral blood flow, higher percentage of gray matter tissue, and higher interhemispheric connectivity in females, compared with higher percentage of white matter and greater intrahemispheric connectivity as well as higher glucose metabolism in limbic regions in males. Many of these differences are present in childhood, but they become more prominent with adolescence, perhaps linked to puberty. Overall, they indicate complementarity between the sexes that would result in greater adaptive diversity. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  12. Complementarity of Sex Differences in Brain and Behavior: From Laterality to Multi-Modal Neuroimaging

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gur, Ruben C.; Gur, Raquel E.

    2016-01-01

    While overwhelmingly behavior is similar in males and females, and correspondingly the brains are similar, sex differences permeate both brain and behavioral measures and these differences have been the focus of increasing scrutiny by neuroscientists. Here we describe milestones of over three decades of research in brain and behavior. This research was necessarily bound by available methodology, and we began by indirect behavioral indicators of brain function such as handedness. We proceeded to using neuropsychological batteries and then to structural and functional neuroimaging that provided the foundations of a cognitive neuroscience based computerized neurocognitive battery. Sex differences were apparent and consistent in neurocognitive measures, with females performing better on memory and social cognition tasks and males on spatial processing and motor speed. Sex differences were also prominent on all major brain parameters, including higher rates of cerebral blood flow, higher percent of gray matter tissue and higher inter-hemispheric connectivity in females compared to higher percent of white matter and greater intra-hemispheric connectivity, as well as higher glucose metabolism in limbic regions in males. Many of these differences are present in childhood but they become more prominent with adolescence, perhaps linked to puberty. Together they indicate complementarity between the sexes that would result in higher adaptive diversity. PMID:27870413

  13. Sex differences in brain and behavior in adolescence: Findings from the Philadelphia Neurodevelopmental Cohort.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gur, Raquel E; Gur, Ruben C

    2016-11-01

    Sex differences in brain and behavior were investigated across the lifespan. Parameters include neurobehavioral measures linkable to neuroanatomic and neurophysiologic indicators of brain structure and function. Sexual differentiation of behavior has been related to organizational factors during sensitive periods of development, with adolescence and puberty gaining increased attention. Adolescence is a critical developmental period where transition to adulthood is impacted by multiple factors that can enhance vulnerability to brain dysfunction. Here we highlight sex differences in neurobehavioral measures in adolescence that are linked to brain function. We summarize neuroimaging studies examining brain structure, connectivity and perfusion, underscoring the relationship to sex differences in behavioral measures and commenting on hormonal findings. We focus on relevant data from the Philadelphia Neurodevelopmental Cohort (PNC), a community-based sample of nearly 10,000 clinically and neurocognitively phenotyped youths age 8-21 of whom 1600 have received multimodal neuroimaging. These data indicate early and pervasive sexual differentiation in neurocognitive measures that is linkable to brain parameters. We conclude by describing possible clinical implications. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  14. Loss of T cells influences sex differences in behavior and brain structure.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rilett, Kelly C; Friedel, Miriam; Ellegood, Jacob; MacKenzie, Robyn N; Lerch, Jason P; Foster, Jane A

    2015-05-01

    Clinical and animal studies demonstrate that immune-brain communication influences behavior and brain function. Mice lacking T cell receptor β and δ chains were tested in the elevated plus maze, open field, and light-dark test and showed reduced anxiety-like behavior compared to wild type. Interestingly sex differences were observed in the behavioural phenotype of TCRβ-/-δ- mice. Specifically, female TCRβ-/-δ- mice spent more time in the light chamber compared to wild type females, whereas male TCRβ-/-δ- spent more time in the center of the open field compared to wild type males. In addition, TCRβ-/-δ- mice did not show sex differences in activity-related behaviors observed in WT mice. Ex vivo brain imaging (7 Tesla MRI) revealed volume changes in hippocampus, hypothalamus, amygdala, periaqueductal gray, and dorsal raphe and other brain regions between wild type and T cell receptor knockout mice. There was also a loss of sexual dimorphism in brain volume in the bed nucleus of the stria terminalis, normally the most sexually dimorphic region in the brain, in immune compromised mice. These data demonstrate the presence of T cells is important in the development of sex differences in CNS circuitry and behavior. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  15. Her versus his migraine: multiple sex differences in brain function and structure.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maleki, Nasim; Linnman, Clas; Brawn, Jennifer; Burstein, Rami; Becerra, Lino; Borsook, David

    2012-08-01

    Migraine is twice as common in females as in males, but the mechanisms behind this difference are still poorly understood. We used high-field magnetic resonance imaging in male and female age-matched interictal (migraine free) migraineurs and matched healthy controls to determine alterations in brain structure. Female migraineurs had thicker posterior insula and precuneus cortices compared with male migraineurs and healthy controls of both sexes. Furthermore, evaluation of functional responses to heat within the migraine groups indicated concurrent functional differences in male and female migraineurs and a sex-specific pattern of functional connectivity of these two regions with the rest of the brain. The results support the notion of a 'sex phenotype' in migraine and indicate that brains are differentially affected by migraine in females compared with males. Furthermore, the results also support the notion that sex differences involve both brain structure as well as functional circuits, in that emotional circuitry compared with sensory processing appears involved to a greater degree in female than male migraineurs.

  16. Sex differences in brain activation to emotional stimuli: a meta-analysis of neuroimaging studies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stevens, Jennifer S; Hamann, Stephan

    2012-06-01

    Substantial sex differences in emotional responses and perception have been reported in previous psychological and psychophysiological studies. For example, women have been found to respond more strongly to negative emotional stimuli, a sex difference that has been linked to an increased risk of depression and anxiety disorders. The extent to which such sex differences are reflected in corresponding differences in regional brain activation remains a largely unresolved issue, however, in part because relatively few neuroimaging studies have addressed this issue. Here, by conducting a quantitative meta-analysis of neuroimaging studies, we were able to substantially increase statistical power to detect sex differences relative to prior studies, by combining emotion studies which explicitly examined sex differences with the much larger number of studies that examined only women or men. We used an activation likelihood estimation approach to characterize sex differences in the likelihood of regional brain activation elicited by emotional stimuli relative to non-emotional stimuli. We examined sex differences separately for negative and positive emotions, in addition to examining all emotions combined. Sex differences varied markedly between negative and positive emotion studies. The majority of sex differences favoring women were observed for negative emotion, whereas the majority of the sex differences favoring men were observed for positive emotion. This valence-specificity was particularly evident for the amygdala. For negative emotion, women exhibited greater activation than men in the left amygdala, as well as in other regions including the left thalamus, hypothalamus, mammillary bodies, left caudate, and medial prefrontal cortex. In contrast, for positive emotion, men exhibited greater activation than women in the left amygdala, as well as greater activation in other regions including the bilateral inferior frontal gyrus and right fusiform gyrus. These meta

  17. Sex differences in metabolic aging of the brain: insights into female susceptibility to Alzheimer's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhao, Liqin; Mao, Zisu; Woody, Sarah K; Brinton, Roberta D

    2016-06-01

    Despite recent advances in the understanding of clinical aspects of sex differences in Alzheimer's disease (AD), the underlying mechanisms, for instance, how sex modifies AD risk and why the female brain is more susceptible to AD, are not clear. The purpose of this study is to elucidate sex disparities in brain aging profiles focusing on 2 major areas-energy and amyloid metabolism-that are most significantly affected in preclinical development of AD. Total RNA isolated from hippocampal tissues of both female and male 129/C57BL/6 mice at ages of 6, 9, 12, or 15 months were comparatively analyzed by custom-designed Taqman low-density arrays for quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction detection of a total of 182 genes involved in a broad spectrum of biological processes modulating energy production and amyloid homeostasis. Gene expression profiles revealed substantial differences in the trajectory of aging changes between female and male brains. In female brains, 44.2% of genes were significantly changed from 6 months to 9 months and two-thirds showed downregulation. In contrast, in male brains, only 5.4% of genes were significantly altered at this age transition. Subsequent changes in female brains were at a much smaller magnitude, including 10.9% from 9 months to 12 months and 6.1% from 12 months to 15 months. In male brains, most changes occurred from 12 months to 15 months and the majority were upregulated. Furthermore, gene network analysis revealed that clusterin appeared to serve as a link between the overall decreased bioenergetic metabolism and increased amyloid dyshomeostasis associated with the earliest transition in female brains. Together, results from this study indicate that: (1) female and male brains follow profoundly dissimilar trajectories as they age; (2) female brains undergo age-related changes much earlier than male brains; (3) early changes in female brains signal the onset of a hypometabolic phenotype at risk for AD. These

  18. Effects of chromosomal sex and hormonal influences on shaping sex differences in brain and behavior: Lessons from cases of disorders of sex development.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bramble, Matthew S; Lipson, Allen; Vashist, Neerja; Vilain, Eric

    2017-01-02

    Sex differences in brain development and postnatal behavior are determined largely by genetic sex and in utero gonadal hormone secretions. In humans however, determining the weight that each of these factors contributes remains a challenge because social influences should also be considered. Cases of disorders of sex development (DSD) provide unique insight into how mutations in genes responsible for gonadal formation can perturb the subsequent developmental hormonal milieu and elicit changes in normal human brain maturation. Specific forms of DSDs such as complete androgen insensitivity syndrome (CAIS), congenital adrenal hyperplasia (CAH), and 5α-reductase deficiency syndrome have variable effects between males and females, and the developmental outcomes of such conditions are largely dependent on sex chromosome composition. Medical and psychological works focused on CAH, CAIS, and 5α-reductase deficiency have helped form the foundation for understanding the roles of genetic and hormonal factors necessary for guiding human brain development. Here we highlight how the three aforementioned DSDs contribute to brain and behavioral phenotypes that can uniquely affect 46,XY and 46,XX individuals in dramatically different fashions. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  19. Impact of sex differences in brain response to infection with Plasmodium berghei.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dkhil, Mohamed A; Al-Shaebi, Esam M; Lubbad, Mahmoud Y; Al-Quraishy, Saleh

    2016-01-01

    Malaria is considered to be one of the most prevalent diseases in the world. Severity of the disease between males and females is very important in clinical research areas. In this study, we investigated the impact of sex differences in brain response to infection with Plasmodium berghei. Male and female C57Bl/6 mice were infected with P. berghei-infected erythrocytes. The infection induced a significant change in weight loss in males (-7.2 % ± 0.5) than females (-4.9 % ± 0.6). The maximum parasitemia reached about 15 % at day 9 postinfection. Also, P. berghei infection caused histopathological changes in the brain of mice. These changes were in the form of inflammation, hemorrhage, and structural changes in Purkinje cells. In addition, P. berghei was able to induce a marked oxidative damage in mice brain. The infection induced a significant increase in male brain glutathione than females while the brain catalase level was significantly increased in infected females than infected males. Moreover, the change in brain neurotransmitters, dopamine, epinephrine, norepinephrine, and serotonin, was more in infected males than infected females. At the molecular level, P. berghei was able to induce upregulations of Adam23, Cabp1, Cacnb4, Glrb, and Vdac3-mRNA in the brain of mice. These genes were significantly upregulated in infected males than in infected females. In general, P. berghei could induce structural, biochemical, and molecular alterations in mice brain. Severity of these alterations was different according to sex of mice.

  20. Sex differences in the influence of body mass index on anatomical architecture of brain networks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gupta, A; Mayer, E A; Hamadani, K; Bhatt, R; Fling, C; Alaverdyan, M; Torgerson, C; Ashe-McNalley, C; Van Horn, J D; Naliboff, B; Tillisch, K; Sanmiguel, C P; Labus, J S

    2017-08-01

    The brain has a central role in regulating ingestive behavior in obesity. Analogous to addiction behaviors, an imbalance in the processing of rewarding and salient stimuli results in maladaptive eating behaviors that override homeostatic needs. We performed network analysis based on graph theory to examine the association between body mass index (BMI) and network measures of integrity, information flow and global communication (centrality) in reward, salience and sensorimotor regions and to identify sex-related differences in these parameters. Structural and diffusion tensor imaging were obtained in a sample of 124 individuals (61 males and 63 females). Graph theory was applied to calculate anatomical network properties (centrality) for regions of the reward, salience and sensorimotor networks. General linear models with linear contrasts were performed to test for BMI and sex-related differences in measures of centrality, while controlling for age. In both males and females, individuals with high BMI (obese and overweight) had greater anatomical centrality (greater connectivity) of reward (putamen) and salience (anterior insula) network regions. Sex differences were observed both in individuals with normal and elevated BMI. In individuals with high BMI, females compared to males showed greater centrality in reward (amygdala, hippocampus and nucleus accumbens) and salience (anterior mid-cingulate cortex) regions, while males compared to females had greater centrality in reward (putamen) and sensorimotor (posterior insula) regions. In individuals with increased BMI, reward, salience and sensorimotor network regions are susceptible to topological restructuring in a sex-related manner. These findings highlight the influence of these regions on integrative processing of food-related stimuli and increased ingestive behavior in obesity, or in the influence of hedonic ingestion on brain topological restructuring. The observed sex differences emphasize the importance of

  1. Sex-related differences in effects of progesterone following neonatal hypoxic brain injury.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peterson, Bethany L; Won, Soonmi; Geddes, Rastafa I; Sayeed, Iqbal; Stein, Donald G

    2015-06-01

    There is no satisfactory therapeutic intervention for neonatal hypoxic-ischemic (HI) encephalopathy. Progesterone is known to be effective in treating traumatic brain injury in adult animals but its effects in neonatal brains have not been reported. Brain injuries were induced by a unilateral common carotid artery ligation plus hypoxia exposure. Progesterone was administered immediately after hypoxia and daily for 5 days at 8 mg/kg, followed by a tapered dose for two days. At six weeks post-injury, lesion size and inflammatory factors were evaluated. Progesterone-treated, HI-injured male animals, but not females, showed significant long-term tissue protection compared to vehicle, suggesting an important sex difference in neuroprotection. Progesterone-treated, HI-injured male rats had fewer activated microglia in the cortex and hippocampus compared to controls. The rats were tested for neurological reflexes, motor asymmetry, and cognitive performance at multiple time points. The injured animals exhibited few detectable motor deficits, suggesting a high level of age- and injury-related neuroplasticity. There were substantial sex differences on several behavioral tests, indicating that immature males and females should be analyzed separately. Progesterone-treated animals showed modest beneficial effects in both sexes compared to vehicle-treated injured animals. Sham animals given progesterone did not behave differently from vehicle-treated sham animals on any measures. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  2. Sex-specific differences in transcriptome profiles of brain and muscle tissue of the tropical gar.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cribbin, Kayla M; Quackenbush, Corey R; Taylor, Kyle; Arias-Rodriguez, Lenin; Kelley, Joanna L

    2017-04-07

    cellular functioning, signaling, immune response, and tissue-specific functions. This study identified differentially expressed transcripts between male and female gar in muscle and brain tissue. The majority of differentially expressed transcripts had sex-specific expression. Expanding on these findings to other developmental stages, populations, and species may lead to the identification of genetic factors contributing to the skewed sex ratio seen in the tropical gar and of sex-specific differences in expression in other species. Finally, the transcriptome assembly will open future research avenues on tropical gar development, cell function, environmental resistance, and evolution in the context of other early vertebrates.

  3. Sex differences in DNA methylation and expression in zebrafish brain: a test of an extended 'male sex drive' hypothesis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chatterjee, Aniruddha; Lagisz, Malgorzata; Rodger, Euan J; Zhen, Li; Stockwell, Peter A; Duncan, Elizabeth J; Horsfield, Julia A; Jeyakani, Justin; Mathavan, Sinnakaruppan; Ozaki, Yuichi; Nakagawa, Shinichi

    2016-09-30

    The sex drive hypothesis predicts that stronger selection on male traits has resulted in masculinization of the genome. Here we test whether such masculinizing effects can be detected at the level of the transcriptome and methylome in the adult zebrafish brain. Although methylation is globally similar, we identified 914 specific differentially methylated CpGs (DMCs) between males and females (435 were hypermethylated and 479 were hypomethylated in males compared to females). These DMCs were prevalent in gene body, intergenic regions and CpG island shores. We also discovered 15 distinct CpG clusters with striking sex-specific DNA methylation differences. In contrast, at transcriptome level, more female-biased genes than male-biased genes were expressed, giving little support for the male sex drive hypothesis. Our study provides genome-wide methylome and transcriptome assessment and sheds light on sex-specific epigenetic patterns and in zebrafish for the first time. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  4. FMRI to probe sex-related differences in brain function with multitasking.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tschernegg, Melanie; Neuper, Christa; Schmidt, Reinhold; Wood, Guilherme; Kronbichler, Martin; Fazekas, Franz; Enzinger, Christian; Koini, Marisa

    2017-01-01

    Although established as a general notion in society, there is no solid scientific foundation for the existence of sex-differences in multitasking. Reaction time and accuracy in dual task conditions have an inverse relationship relative to single task, independently from sex. While a more disseminated network, parallel to decreasing accuracy and reaction time has been demonstrated in dual task fMRI studies, little is known so far whether there exist respective sex-related differences in activation. We subjected 20 women (mean age = 25.45; SD = 5.23) and 20 men (mean age = 27.55; SD = 4.00) to a combined verbal and spatial fMRI paradigm at 3.0T to assess sex-related skills, based on the assumption that generally women better perform in verbal tasks while men do better in spatial tasks. We also obtained behavioral tests for verbal and spatial intelligence, attention, executive functions, and working memory. No differences between women and men were observed in behavioral measures of dual-tasking or cognitive performance. Generally, brain activation increased with higher task load, mainly in the bilateral inferior and prefrontal gyri, the anterior cingulum, thalamus, putamen and occipital areas. Comparing sexes, women showed increased activation in the inferior frontal gyrus in the verbal dual-task while men demonstrated increased activation in the precuneus and adjacent visual areas in the spatial task. Against the background of equal cognitive and behavioral dual-task performance in both sexes, we provide first evidence for sex-related activation differences in functional networks for verbal and spatial dual-tasking.

  5. FMRI to probe sex-related differences in brain function with multitasking.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Melanie Tschernegg

    Full Text Available Although established as a general notion in society, there is no solid scientific foundation for the existence of sex-differences in multitasking. Reaction time and accuracy in dual task conditions have an inverse relationship relative to single task, independently from sex. While a more disseminated network, parallel to decreasing accuracy and reaction time has been demonstrated in dual task fMRI studies, little is known so far whether there exist respective sex-related differences in activation.We subjected 20 women (mean age = 25.45; SD = 5.23 and 20 men (mean age = 27.55; SD = 4.00 to a combined verbal and spatial fMRI paradigm at 3.0T to assess sex-related skills, based on the assumption that generally women better perform in verbal tasks while men do better in spatial tasks. We also obtained behavioral tests for verbal and spatial intelligence, attention, executive functions, and working memory.No differences between women and men were observed in behavioral measures of dual-tasking or cognitive performance. Generally, brain activation increased with higher task load, mainly in the bilateral inferior and prefrontal gyri, the anterior cingulum, thalamus, putamen and occipital areas. Comparing sexes, women showed increased activation in the inferior frontal gyrus in the verbal dual-task while men demonstrated increased activation in the precuneus and adjacent visual areas in the spatial task.Against the background of equal cognitive and behavioral dual-task performance in both sexes, we provide first evidence for sex-related activation differences in functional networks for verbal and spatial dual-tasking.

  6. Sex difference in mecp2 expression during a critical period of rat brain development.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kurian, Joseph R; Forbes-Lorman, Robin M; Auger, Anthony P

    2007-09-01

    Pervasive developmental disorder is a classification covering five related conditions including the neurodevelopmental disorder Rett syndrome (RTT) and autism. Of these five conditions, only RTT has a known genetic cause with mutations in Methyl-CpG-binding protein 2 (MeCP2), a global repressor of gene expression, responsible for the majority of RTT cases. However, recent evidence indicates that reduced MeCP2 expression or activity is also found in autism and other disorders with overlapping phenotypes. Considering the sex difference in autism diagnosis, with males diagnosed four times more often than females, we questioned if a sex difference existed in the expression of MeCP2, in particular within the amygdala, a region that develops atypically in autism. We found that male rats express significantly less mecp2 mRNA and protein than females within the amygdala, as well as the ventromedial hypothalamus (VMH), but not within the preoptic area (POA) on post-natal day 1 (PN1). At PN10 these differences were gone; however, on this day males had more mecp2 mRNA than females within the POA. The transient sex difference of mecp2 expression during the steroid-sensitive period of brain development suggests that mecp2 may participate in normal sexual differentiation of the rat brain. Considering the strong link between MeCP2 and neurodevelopmental disorders, the lower levels of mecp2 expression in males may also underlie a biological risk for mecp2-related neural disorders.

  7. Why size matters: differences in brain volume account for apparent sex differences in callosal anatomy: the sexual dimorphism of the corpus callosum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Luders, Eileen; Toga, Arthur W; Thompson, Paul M

    2014-01-01

    Numerous studies have demonstrated a sexual dimorphism of the human corpus callosum. However, the question remains if sex differences in brain size, which typically is larger in men than in women, or biological sex per se account for the apparent sex differences in callosal morphology. Comparing callosal dimensions between men and women matched for overall brain size may clarify the true contribution of biological sex, as any observed group difference should indicate pure sex effects. We thus examined callosal morphology in 24 male and 24 female brains carefully matched for overall size. In addition, we selected 24 extremely large male brains and 24 extremely small female brains to explore if observed sex effects might vary depending on the degree to which male and female groups differed in brain size. Using the individual T1-weighted brain images (n=96), we delineated the corpus callosum at midline and applied a well-validated surface-based mesh-modeling approach to compare callosal thickness at 100 equidistant points between groups determined by brain size and sex. The corpus callosum was always thicker in men than in women. However, this callosal sex difference was strongly determined by the cerebral sex difference overall. That is, the larger the discrepancy in brain size between men and women, the more pronounced the sex difference in callosal thickness, with hardly any callosal differences remaining between brain-size matched men and women. Altogether, these findings suggest that individual differences in brain size account for apparent sex differences in the anatomy of the corpus callosum. © 2013.

  8. Sex Commonalities and Differences in Obesity-Related Alterations in Intrinsic Brain Activity and Connectivity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gupta, Arpana; Mayer, Emeran A; Labus, Jennifer S; Bhatt, Ravi R; Ju, Tiffany; Love, Aubrey; Bal, Amanat; Tillisch, Kirsten; Naliboff, Bruce; Sanmiguel, Claudia P; Kilpatrick, Lisa A

    2018-02-01

    This study aimed to characterize obesity-related sex differences in the intrinsic activity and connectivity of the brain's reward networks. Eighty-six women (n = 43) and men (n = 43) completed a 10-minute resting functional magnetic resonance imaging scan. Sex differences and commonalities in BMI-related frequency power distribution and reward seed-based connectivity were investigated by using partial least squares analysis. For whole-brain activity in both men and women, increased BMI was associated with increased slow-5 activity in the left globus pallidus (GP) and substantia nigra. In women only, increased BMI was associated with increased slow-4 activity in the right GP and bilateral putamen. For seed-based connectivity in women, increased BMI was associated with reduced slow-5 connectivity between the left GP and putamen and the emotion and cortical regulation regions, but in men, increased BMI was associated with increased connectivity with the medial frontal cortex. In both men and women, increased BMI was associated with increased slow-4 connectivity between the right GP and bilateral putamen and the emotion regulation and sensorimotor-related regions. The stronger relationship between increased BMI and decreased connectivity of core reward network components with cortical and emotion regulation regions in women may be related to the greater prevalence of emotional eating. The present findings suggest the importance of personalized treatments for obesity that consider the sex of the affected individual. © 2017 The Obesity Society.

  9. Topological Organization of Functional Brain Networks in Healthy Children: Differences in Relation to Age, Sex, and Intelligence

    OpenAIRE

    Wu, Kai; Taki, Yasuyuki; Sato, Kazunori; Hashizume, Hiroshi; Sassa, Yuko; Takeuchi, Hikaru; Thyreau, Benjamin; He, Yong; Evans, Alan C.; Li, Xiaobo; Kawashima, Ryuta; Fukuda, Hiroshi

    2013-01-01

    Recent studies have demonstrated developmental changes of functional brain networks derived from functional connectivity using graph theoretical analysis, which has been rapidly translated to studies of brain network organization. However, little is known about sex- and IQ-related differences in the topological organization of functional brain networks during development. In this study, resting-state fMRI (rs-fMRI) was used to map the functional brain networks in 51 healthy children. We then ...

  10. Sex/gender differences in the brain and cognition in schizophrenia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mendrek, Adrianna; Mancini-Marïe, Adham

    2016-08-01

    The early conceptualizations of schizophrenia have noted some sex/gender differences in epidemiology and clinical expression of the disorder. Over the past few decades, the interest in differences between male and female patients has expanded to encompass brain morphology and neurocognitive function. Despite some variability and methodological shortcomings, a few patterns emerge from the available literature. Most studies of gross neuroanatomy show more enlarged ventricles and smaller frontal lobes in men than in women with schizophrenia; finding reflecting normal sexual dimorphism. In comparison, studies of brain asymmetry and specific corticolimbic structures, suggest a disturbance in normal sexual dimorphism. The neurocognitive findings are somewhat consistent with this picture. Studies of cognitive functions mediated by the lateral frontal network tend to show sex differences in patients which are in the same direction as those observed in the general population, whereas studies of processes mediated by the corticolimbic system more frequently reveal reversal of normal sexual dimorphisms. These trends are faint and future research would need to delineate neurocognitive differences between men and women with various subtypes of schizophrenia (e.g., early versus late onset), while taking into consideration hormonal status and gender of tested participants. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  11. Brain Type or Sex Differences? A structural equation model of the relation between brain type, sex, and motivation to learn science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zeyer, Albert; Bölsterli, Katrin; Brovelli, Dorothee; Odermatt, Freia

    2012-03-01

    Sex is considered to be one of the most significant factors influencing attitudes towards science. However, the so-called brain type approach from cognitive science suggests that the difference in motivation to learn science does not primarily differentiate the girls from the boys, but rather the so-called systemisers from the empathizers. The present study investigates this hypothesis by using structural equation modelling on a sex-stratified sample of 500 male and female students of secondary II level. The results show, that the motivation to learn science is directly influenced by the systemizing quotient SQ, but not by sex. The impact of sex on the motivation to learn science, measured by five key concepts, only works indirectly, namely through the influence of sex on the SQ. The empathizing quotient (EQ) has no impact on the motivation to learn science. The SQ explains between 13 and 23 percent of the variation of the five key constructs. In female students, the impact of the SQ is very similar for all key concepts. In male students, it is highest for self-efficacy and lowest for assessment anxiety. The motivation to learn science is significantly larger for male students in all involved SMQ key concepts, but the difference is small. The interpretation of these findings and conclusions for science teaching and further research are discussed.

  12. Sex differences in the brain response to affective scenes with or without humans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Proverbio, Alice Mado; Adorni, Roberta; Zani, Alberto; Trestianu, Laura

    2009-10-01

    Recent findings have demonstrated that women might be more reactive than men to viewing painful stimuli (vicarious response to pain), and therefore more empathic [Han, S., Fan, Y., & Mao, L. (2008). Gender difference in empathy for pain: An electrophysiological investigation. Brain Research, 1196, 85-93]. We investigated whether the two sexes differed in their cerebral responses to affective pictures portraying humans in different positive or negative contexts compared to natural or urban scenarios. 440 IAPS slides were presented to 24 Italian students (12 women and 12 men). Half the pictures displayed humans while the remaining scenes lacked visible persons. ERPs were recorded from 128 electrodes and swLORETA (standardized weighted Low-Resolution Electromagnetic Tomography) source reconstruction was performed. Occipital P115 was greater in response to persons than to scenes and was affected by the emotional valence of the human pictures. This suggests that processing of biologically relevant stimuli is prioritized. Orbitofrontal N2 was greater in response to positive than negative human pictures in women but not in men, and not to scenes. A late positivity (LP) to suffering humans far exceeded the response to negative scenes in women but not in men. In both sexes, the contrast suffering-minus-happy humans revealed a difference in the activation of the occipito/temporal, right occipital (BA19), bilateral parahippocampal, left dorsal prefrontal cortex (DPFC) and left amygdala. However, increased right amygdala and right frontal area activities were observed only in women. The humans-minus-scenes contrast revealed a difference in the activation of the middle occipital gyrus (MOG) in men, and of the left inferior parietal (BA40), left superior temporal gyrus (STG, BA38) and right cingulate (BA31) in women (270-290 ms). These data indicate a sex-related difference in the brain response to humans, possibly supporting human empathy.

  13. Sex differences in associations of arginine vasopressin and oxytocin with resting-state functional brain connectivity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rubin, Leah H; Yao, Li; Keedy, Sarah K; Reilly, James L; Bishop, Jeffrey R; Carter, C Sue; Pournajafi-Nazarloo, Hossein; Drogos, Lauren L; Tamminga, Carol A; Pearlson, Godfrey D; Keshavan, Matcheri S; Clementz, Brett A; Hill, Scot K; Liao, Wei; Ji, Gong-Jun; Lui, Su; Sweeney, John A

    2017-01-02

    Oxytocin (OT) and arginine vasopressin (AVP) exert robust and sexually dimorphic influences on cognition and emotion. How these hormones regulate relevant functional brain systems is not well understood. OT and AVP serum concentrations were assayed in 60 healthy individuals (36 women). Brain functional networks assessed with resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging (rs-fMRI) were constructed with graph theory-based approaches that characterize brain networks as connected nodes. Sex differences were demonstrated in rs-fMRI. Men showed higher nodal degree (connectedness) and efficiency (information propagation capacity) in left inferior frontal gyrus (IFG) and bilateral superior temporal gyrus (STG) and higher nodal degree in left rolandic operculum. Women showed higher nodal betweenness (being part of paths between nodes) in right putamen and left inferior parietal gyrus (IPG). Higher hormone levels were associated with less intrinsic connectivity. In men, higher AVP was associated with lower nodal degree and efficiency in left IFG (pars orbitalis) and left STG and less efficiency in left IFG (pars triangularis). In women, higher AVP was associated with lower betweenness in left IPG, and higher OT was associated with lower nodal degree in left IFG (pars orbitalis). Hormones differentially correlate with brain networks that are important for emotion processing and cognition in men and women. AVP in men and OT in women may regulate orbital frontal cortex connectivity, which is important in emotion processing. Hormone associations with STG and pars triangularis in men and parietal cortex in women may account for well-established sex differences in verbal and visuospatial abilities, respectively. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  14. Distribution of sex steroid hormone receptors in the avian brain: functional implications for neural sex differences and sexual behaviors.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Gahr, M.

    2001-01-01

    Developmental and seasonal changes in the production of androgens, estrogens, and progestins seem to control sex-specific differentiation and seasonal changes in appetitive and consummatory sexual behaviors of birds. This results in profound sex differences in the quality (sex-specific) or quantity

  15. Sex Differences in Regional Brain Glucose Metabolism Following Opioid Withdrawal and Replacement.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Santoro, Giovanni C; Carrion, Joseph; Patel, Krishna; Vilchez, Crystal; Veith, Jennifer; Brodie, Jonathan D; Dewey, Stephen L

    2017-08-01

    Methadone and buprenorphine are currently the most common pharmacological treatments for opioid dependence. Interestingly, the clinical response to these drugs appears to be sex specific. That is, females exhibit superior therapeutic efficacy, defined as extended periods of abstinence and longer time to relapse, compared with males. However, the underlying metabolic effects of opioid withdrawal and replacement have not been examined. Therefore, using 18 FDG and microPET, we measured differences in regional brain glucose metabolism in males and females following morphine withdrawal and subsequent methadone or buprenorphine replacement. In both males and females, spontaneous opioid withdrawal altered glucose metabolism in regions associated with reward and drug dependence. Specifically, metabolic increases in the thalamus, as well as metabolic decreases in insular cortex and the periaqueductal gray, were noted. However, compared with males, females exhibited increased metabolism in the preoptic area, primary motor cortex, and the amygdala, and decreased metabolism in the caudate/putamen and medial geniculate nucleus. Methadone and buprenorphine initially abolished these changes uniformly, but subsequently produced their own regional metabolic alterations that varied by treatment and sex. Compared with sex-matched control animals undergoing spontaneous opioid withdrawal, male animals treated with methadone exhibited increased caudate/putamen metabolism, whereas buprenorphine produced increased ventral striatum and motor cortex metabolism in females, and increased ventral striatum and somatosensory cortex metabolism in males. Notably, when treatment effects were compared between sexes, methadone-treated females showed increased cingulate cortex metabolism, whereas buprenorphine-treated females showed decreased metabolism in cingulate cortex and increased metabolism in the globus pallidus. Perhaps the initial similarities in males and females underlie early therapeutic

  16. Sex differences and the development of the rabbit brain: effects of vinclozolin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bisenius, Erin S; Veeramachaneni, D N Rao; Sammonds, Ginger E; Tobet, Stuart

    2006-09-01

    The preoptic/anterior hypothalamic area (POA/AH) is one of the most sexually dimorphic areas of the vertebrate brain and plays a pivotal role in regulating male sexual behavior. Vinclozolin is a fungicide thought to be an environmental antiandrogen, which disrupts masculine sexual behavior when administered to rabbits during development. In this study, we examined several characteristics of the rabbit POA/AH for sexual dimorphism and endocrine disruption by vinclozolin. Pregnant rabbits were dosed orally with vinclozolin (10 mg/kg body weight) or carrot paste vehicle once daily for 6 wk beginning at midgestation and continuing through nursing until Postpartum Week 4. At 6 wk, offspring were perfused with 4% paraformaldehyde and brains processed for immunocytochemical localization of tyrosine hydroxylase, calbindin, gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH), or Nissl stain. There were significant sex differences in the distribution of calbindin in the POA/AH and the size of cells in the dorsal POA/AH (values greater in females than in males), but not in the number or distribution of tyrosine hydroxylase or GnRH neurons. In both sexes, exposure to vinclozolin significantly increased calbindin expression in the ventral POA/AH and significantly decreased number of GnRH neurons selectively in the region of the organum vasculosum of the lamina terminalis (OVLT) but not more caudally in the POA/AH. This is the first documentation of a sexually dimorphic region in the rabbit brain, and further supports the use of this species as a model for studying the influence of vinclozolin on reproductive development with potential application to human systems.

  17. Multi-site exploration of sex differences in brain reactivity to smoking cues: Consensus across sites and methodologies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dumais, Kelly M; Franklin, Teresa R; Jagannathan, Kanchana; Hager, Nathan; Gawrysiak, Michael; Betts, Jennifer; Farmer, Stacey; Guthier, Emily; Pater, Heather; Janes, Amy C; Wetherill, Reagan R

    2017-09-01

    Biological sex influences cigarette smoking behavior. More men than women smoke, but women have a harder time quitting. Sex differences in smoking cue (SC) reactivity may underlie such behavioral differences. However, the influence of sex on brain reactivity to SCs has yielded inconsistent findings suggesting the need for continued study. Here, we investigated the effect of sex on SC reactivity across two sites using different imaging modalities and SC stimulus types. Pseudo-continuous arterial spin-labeled (pCASL) perfusion functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) was used to assess brain responses to SC versus non-SC videos in 40 smokers (23 females) at the University of Pennsylvania. BOLD fMRI was used to assess brain responses to SC versus non-SC still images in 32 smokers (18 females) at McLean Hospital. Brain reactivity to SCs was compared between men and women and was correlated with SC-induced craving. In both cohorts, males showed higher SC versus non-SC reactivity compared to females in reward-related brain regions (i.e., ventral striatum/ventral pallidum, ventral medial prefrontal cortex). Brain activation during SC versus non-SC exposure correlated positively with SC-induced subjective craving in males, but not females. The current work provides much needed replication and validation of sex differences in SC-reactivity. These findings also add to a body of literature showing that men have greater reward-related brain activation to drug cues across drug classes. Such sex differences confirm the need to consider sex not only when evaluating SC-reactivity but when examining nicotine dependence etiology and treatment. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  18. Topological organization of functional brain networks in healthy children: differences in relation to age, sex, and intelligence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, Kai; Taki, Yasuyuki; Sato, Kazunori; Hashizume, Hiroshi; Sassa, Yuko; Takeuchi, Hikaru; Thyreau, Benjamin; He, Yong; Evans, Alan C; Li, Xiaobo; Kawashima, Ryuta; Fukuda, Hiroshi

    2013-01-01

    Recent studies have demonstrated developmental changes of functional brain networks derived from functional connectivity using graph theoretical analysis, which has been rapidly translated to studies of brain network organization. However, little is known about sex- and IQ-related differences in the topological organization of functional brain networks during development. In this study, resting-state fMRI (rs-fMRI) was used to map the functional brain networks in 51 healthy children. We then investigated the effects of age, sex, and IQ on economic small-world properties and regional nodal properties of the functional brain networks. At a global level of whole networks, we found significant age-related increases in the small-worldness and local efficiency, significant higher values of the global efficiency in boys compared with girls, and no significant IQ-related difference. Age-related increases in the regional nodal properties were found predominately in the frontal brain regions, whereas the parietal, temporal, and occipital brain regions showed age-related decreases. Significant sex-related differences in the regional nodal properties were found in various brain regions, primarily related to the default mode, language, and vision systems. Positive correlations between IQ and the regional nodal properties were found in several brain regions related to the attention system, whereas negative correlations were found in various brain regions primarily involved in the default mode, emotion, and language systems. Together, our findings of the network topology of the functional brain networks in healthy children and its relationship with age, sex, and IQ bring new insights into the understanding of brain maturation and cognitive development during childhood and adolescence.

  19. Topological organization of functional brain networks in healthy children: differences in relation to age, sex, and intelligence.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kai Wu

    Full Text Available Recent studies have demonstrated developmental changes of functional brain networks derived from functional connectivity using graph theoretical analysis, which has been rapidly translated to studies of brain network organization. However, little is known about sex- and IQ-related differences in the topological organization of functional brain networks during development. In this study, resting-state fMRI (rs-fMRI was used to map the functional brain networks in 51 healthy children. We then investigated the effects of age, sex, and IQ on economic small-world properties and regional nodal properties of the functional brain networks. At a global level of whole networks, we found significant age-related increases in the small-worldness and local efficiency, significant higher values of the global efficiency in boys compared with girls, and no significant IQ-related difference. Age-related increases in the regional nodal properties were found predominately in the frontal brain regions, whereas the parietal, temporal, and occipital brain regions showed age-related decreases. Significant sex-related differences in the regional nodal properties were found in various brain regions, primarily related to the default mode, language, and vision systems. Positive correlations between IQ and the regional nodal properties were found in several brain regions related to the attention system, whereas negative correlations were found in various brain regions primarily involved in the default mode, emotion, and language systems. Together, our findings of the network topology of the functional brain networks in healthy children and its relationship with age, sex, and IQ bring new insights into the understanding of brain maturation and cognitive development during childhood and adolescence.

  20. Sex-specific differences in mitochondria biogenesis, morphology, respiratory function, and ROS homeostasis in young mouse heart and brain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Khalifa, Abdel Rahman M; Abdel-Rahman, Engy A; Mahmoud, Ali M; Ali, Mohamed H; Noureldin, Maha; Saber, Saber H; Mohsen, Mahmoud; Ali, Sameh S

    2017-03-01

    Sex-specific differences in mitochondrial function and free radical homeostasis are reported in the context of aging but not well-established in pathogeneses occurring early in life. Here, we examine if sex disparity in mitochondria function, morphology, and redox status starts early and hence can be implicated in sexual dimorphism in cardiac as well as neurological disorders prevalent at young age. Although mitochondrial activity in the heart did not significantly vary between sexes, female brain exhibited enhanced respiration and higher reserve capacity. This was associated with lower H 2 O 2 production in female cardiac and brain tissues. Using transmission electron microscopy, we found that the number of female cardiac mitochondria is moderately greater (117 ± 3%, P  = 0.049, N  = 4) than male's, which increased significantly for cortical mitochondria (134 ± 4%, P  = 0.001, N  = 4). However, male's cardiac mitochondria exhibited fragmented, circular, and smaller mitochondria relative to female's mitochondria, while no morphologic sex-dependent differences were observed in cortical mitochondria. No sex differences were detected in Nox2 and Nox4 proteins or O 2 -consuming/H 2 O 2 -producing activities in brain homogenate or synaptosomes. However, a strong trend of increased EPR-detected NOX superoxide in male synaptosomes hinted at higher superoxide dismutase activity in female brains, which was confirmed by two independent protocols. We also provide direct evidence that respiring mitochondria generally produce an order-of-magnitude lower reactive oxygen species (ROS) proportions than currently estimated. Our results indicate that sex differences in mitochondrial biogenesis, bioenergetics, and morphology may start at young age and that sex-dependent SOD capacity may be responsible for differences in ROS homeostasis in heart and brain. © 2017 The Authors. Physiological Reports published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc. on behalf of The Physiological

  1. FMRI to probe sex-related differences in brain function with multitasking

    OpenAIRE

    Tschernegg, Melanie; Neuper, Christa; Schmidt, Reinhold; Wood, Guilherme; Kronbichler, Martin; Fazekas, Franz; Enzinger, Christian; Koini, Marisa

    2017-01-01

    Background Although established as a general notion in society, there is no solid scientific foundation for the existence of sex-differences in multitasking. Reaction time and accuracy in dual task conditions have an inverse relationship relative to single task, independently from sex. While a more disseminated network, parallel to decreasing accuracy and reaction time has been demonstrated in dual task fMRI studies, little is known so far whether there exist respective sex-related difference...

  2. The ARIC-PET amyloid imaging study: Brain amyloid differences by age, race, sex, and APOE.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gottesman, Rebecca F; Schneider, Andrea L C; Zhou, Yun; Chen, Xueqi; Green, Edward; Gupta, Naresh; Knopman, David S; Mintz, Akiva; Rahmim, Arman; Sharrett, A Richey; Wagenknecht, Lynne E; Wong, Dean F; Mosley, Thomas H

    2016-08-02

    To evaluate differences in amyloid deposition in a community-based cohort without dementia by age, sex, race, education, and APOE ε4 allele status. Recruited from the longitudinal Atherosclerosis Risk in Communities study, 329 participants without dementia, ages 67-88 years, were imaged using florbetapir PET at 3 US community sites (Washington County, Maryland; Forsyth County, North Carolina; and Jackson, Mississippi). Standardized uptake value ratios (SUVRs) were calculated; global cortical SUVR >1.2 was evaluated as the primary outcome. Age, race, sex, education level, and number of APOE ε4 alleles were evaluated in multivariable models including vascular risk factors, brain white matter hyperintensity and total intracranial volume, and cognitive status. A total of 141 of the participants (43%) were black. In multivariable models, odds of elevated SUVR was increased in participants with increasing age (odds ratio [OR] 1.63, 95% confidence interval [CI] 1.01-2.65 per 10 years of age) and black race (OR 2.08, 95% CI 1.23-3.51) but did not differ by educational level. Each ε4 allele was associated with increased odds of elevated SUVR (OR 2.65, 95% CI 1.61-4.39). In this community-based cohort without dementia, florbetapir uptake is associated with older age and APOE genotype. Black race was associated with higher SUVR, after adjusting for demographics, vascular risk factors, cognitive status, white matter hyperintensity volume, and APOE genotype, with effect sizes nearing those seen for APOE ε4. Replication of these findings is needed in other cohorts, and reasons for and consequences of these observed differences by race warrant further study. © 2016 American Academy of Neurology.

  3. Effect of Sex Differences on Brain Mitochondrial Function and Its Suppression by Ovariectomy and in Aged Mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gaignard, Pauline; Savouroux, Stéphane; Liere, Philippe; Pianos, Antoine; Thérond, Patrice; Schumacher, Michael; Slama, Abdelhamid; Guennoun, Rachida

    2015-08-01

    Sex steroids regulate brain function in both normal and pathological states. Mitochondria are an essential target of steroids, as demonstrated by the experimental administration of 17β-estradiol or progesterone (PROG) to ovariectomized female rodents, but the influence of endogenous sex steroids remains understudied. To address this issue, mitochondrial oxidative stress, the oxidative phosphorylation system, and brain steroid levels were analyzed under 3 different experimental sets of endocrine conditions. The first set was designed to study steroid-mediated sex differences in young male and female mice, intact and after gonadectomy. The second set concerned young female mice at 3 time points of the estrous cycle in order to analyze the influence of transient variations in steroid levels. The third set involved the evaluation of the effects of a permanent decrease in gonadal steroids in aged male and female mice. Our results show that young adult females have lower oxidative stress and a higher reduced nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NADH)-linked respiration rate, which is related to a higher pyruvate dehydrogenase complex activity as compared with young adult males. This sex difference did not depend on phases of the estrous cycle, was suppressed by ovariectomy but not by orchidectomy, and no longer existed in aged mice. Concomitant analysis of brain steroids showed that pregnenolone and PROG brain levels were higher in females during the reproductive period than in males and decreased with aging in females. These findings suggest that the major male/female differences in brain pregnenolone and PROG levels may contribute to the sex differences observed in brain mitochondrial function.

  4. Using sex differences in the developing brain to identify nodes of influence for seizure susceptibility and epileptogenesis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kight, Katherine E; McCarthy, Margaret M

    2014-12-01

    Sexual differentiation of the developing brain organizes the neural architecture differently between males and females, and the main influence on this process is exposure to gonadal steroids during sensitive periods of prenatal and early postnatal development. Many molecular and cellular processes are influenced by steroid hormones in the developing brain, including gene expression, cell birth and death, neurite outgrowth and synaptogenesis, and synaptic activity. Perturbations in these processes can alter neuronal excitability and circuit activity, leading to increased seizure susceptibility and the promotion of pathological processes that constitute epileptogenesis. In this review, we will provide a general overview of sex differences in the early developing brain that may be relevant for altered seizure susceptibility in early life, focusing on limbic areas of the brain. Sex differences that have the potential to alter the progress of epileptogenesis are evident at molecular and cellular levels in the developing brain, and include differences in neuronal excitability, response to environmental insult, and epigenetic control of gene expression. Knowing how these processes differ between the sexes can help us understand fundamental mechanisms underlying gender differences in seizure susceptibility and epileptogenesis. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  5. Sex Differences in Brain Activity Related to General and Emotional Intelligence

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jausovec, Norbert; Jausovec, Ksenija

    2005-01-01

    The study investigated gender differences in resting EEG (in three individually determined narrow [alpha] frequency bands) related to the level of general and emotional intelligence. Brain activity of males decreased with the level of general intelligence, whereas an opposite pattern of brain activity was observed in females. This difference was…

  6. Sex differences in morphology of the brain stem and cerebellum with normal ageing

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Oguro, H.; Okada, K.; Yamaguchi, S.; Kobayashi, S.

    1998-01-01

    The cerebral hemispheres become atrophic with age. The sex of the individual may affect this process. There are few studies of the effects of age and sex on the brain stem and cerebellum. We used MRI morphometry to study changes in these structures in 152 normal subjects over 40 years of age. In the linear measurements, men showed significant age-associated atrophy in the tegmentum and pretectum of the midbrain and the base of the pons. In women, only the pretectum of the midbrain showed significant ageing effects after the age of 50 years, and thereafter remained rather constant. Only men had significant age-associated reduction in area of the crebellar vermis area after the age of 70 years. Both men and women showed supratentorial brain atrophy that progressed by decades. There were significant correlations between supratentorial brain atrophy and the diameter of the ventral midbrain, pretectum, and base of the pons in men, and between brain atrophy and the diameter of the fourth ventricle in women. (orig.)

  7. Sex differences in morphology of the brain stem and cerebellum with normal ageing

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Oguro, H.; Okada, K.; Yamaguchi, S.; Kobayashi, S. [Internal Medicine III, Shimane Medical University, Izumo (Japan)

    1998-12-01

    The cerebral hemispheres become atrophic with age. The sex of the individual may affect this process. There are few studies of the effects of age and sex on the brain stem and cerebellum. We used MRI morphometry to study changes in these structures in 152 normal subjects over 40 years of age. In the linear measurements, men showed significant age-associated atrophy in the tegmentum and pretectum of the midbrain and the base of the pons. In women, only the pretectum of the midbrain showed significant ageing effects after the age of 50 years, and thereafter remained rather constant. Only men had significant age-associated reduction in area of the crebellar vermis area after the age of 70 years. Both men and women showed supratentorial brain atrophy that progressed by decades. There were significant correlations between supratentorial brain atrophy and the diameter of the ventral midbrain, pretectum, and base of the pons in men, and between brain atrophy and the diameter of the fourth ventricle in women. (orig.) With 4 figs., 3 tabs., 16 refs.

  8. Social status affects the degree of sex difference in the songbird brain.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cornelia Voigt

    Full Text Available It is thought that neural sex differences are functionally related to sex differences in the behaviour of vertebrates. A prominent example is the song control system of songbirds. Inter-specific comparisons have led to the hypothesis that sex differences in song nuclei size correlate with sex differences in song behaviour. However, only few species with similar song behaviour in both sexes have been investigated and not all data fit the hypothesis. We investigated the proposed structure-function relationship in a cooperatively breeding and duetting songbird, the white-browed sparrow weaver (Plocepasser mahali. This species lives in groups of 2-10 individuals, with a dominant breeding pair and male and female subordinates. While all male and female group members sing duet and chorus song, a male, once it has reached the dominant position in the group, sings an additional type of song that comprises a distinct and large syllable repertoire. Here we show for both types of male-female comparisons a male-biased sex difference in neuroanatomy of areas of the song production pathway (HVC and RA that does not correlate with the observed polymorphism in song behaviour. In contrast, in situ hybridisation of mRNA of selected genes expressed in the song nucleus HVC reveals a gene expression pattern that is either similar between sexes in female-subordinate male comparisons or female-biased in female-dominant male comparisons. Thus, the polymorphic gene expression pattern would fit the sex- and status-related song behaviour. However, this implies that once a male has become dominant it produces the duetting song with a different neural phenotype than subordinate males.

  9. Sex differences in work-related traumatic brain injury due to assault.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mollayeva, Tatyana; Mollayeva, Shirin; Lewko, John; Colantonio, Angela

    2016-06-16

    To examine the etiology, prevalence and severity of assault-precipitated work-related traumatic brain injury (wrTBI) in Ontario, Canada through a sex lens. Cross-sectional study using data abstracted from the Ontario Workplace Safety and Insurance Board (WSIB) claims files in 2004. Descriptive analyses were conducted to determine the distribution of worker/employment/incident characteristics. Workplace physical violence that resulted in a TBI accounted for 6.6% percent of all TBI injury claims. Female workers, primarily in the health care/social services sector, accounted for over half of all TBIs. Most workers were assaulted by consumers/clients. Forty five percent of injuries occurred among workers with less than 3 years of employment. This paper identifies profiles of workers and workplaces for targeted preventive efforts. Future studies are needed to further address risk factors by sex and outcomes, such as length of disability and health care cost.

  10. The trouble with sex differences.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eliot, Lise

    2011-12-22

    Sex differences in the brain are real and clinically important but often grossly distorted in popular discourse. Considering the public's deep fascination with sex difference research and its impact on issues from mental health to education and workplace equity, neuroscientists should pay greater heed to its misappropriation and to studying how gender enculturation shapes neural function. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  11. SEX DIFFERENCES, GENDER AND ADDICTION

    OpenAIRE

    Becker, Jill B.; McClellan, Michele L.; Reed, Beth Glover

    2017-01-01

    This review discusses alcohol/other drug addiction as both a sociocultural and biological phenomenon. Sex differences and gender are not solely determined by biology, nor are they entirely sociocultural. The interactions among biological, environmental, sociocultural and developmental influences result in phenotypes that may be more masculine or more feminine. These gender-related sex differences in the brain can influence the responses to drugs of abuse, progressive changes in the brain afte...

  12. Expression profiling associates blood and brain glucocorticoid receptor signaling with trauma-related individual differences in both sexes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Daskalakis, Nikolaos P; Cohen, Hagit; Cai, Guiqing; Buxbaum, Joseph D; Yehuda, Rachel

    2014-09-16

    Delineating the molecular basis of individual differences in the stress response is critical to understanding the pathophysiology and treatment of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). In this study, 7 d after predator-scent-stress (PSS) exposure, male and female rats were classified into vulnerable (i.e., "PTSD-like") and resilient (i.e., minimally affected) phenotypes on the basis of their performance on a variety of behavioral measures. Genome-wide expression profiling in blood and two limbic brain regions (amygdala and hippocampus), followed by quantitative PCR validation, was performed in these two groups of animals, as well as in an unexposed control group. Differentially expressed genes were identified in blood and brain associated with PSS-exposure and with distinct behavioral profiles postexposure. There was a small but significant between-tissue overlap (4-21%) for the genes associated with exposure-related individual differences, indicating convergent gene expression in both sexes. To uncover convergent signaling pathways across tissue and sex, upstream activated/deactivated transcription factors were first predicted for each tissue and then the respective pathways were identified. Glucocorticoid receptor (GR) signaling was the only convergent pathway associated with individual differences when using the most stringent statistical threshold. Corticosterone treatment 1 h after PSS-exposure prevented anxiety and hyperarousal 7 d later in both sexes, confirming the GR involvement in the PSS behavioral response. In conclusion, genes and pathways associated with extreme differences in the traumatic stress behavioral response can be distinguished from those associated with trauma exposure. Blood-based biomarkers can predict aspects of brain signaling. GR signaling is a convergent signaling pathway, associated with trauma-related individual differences in both sexes.

  13. Differences according to Sex in Sociosexuality and Infidelity after Traumatic Brain Injury

    OpenAIRE

    Moreno, Jhon Alexander; McKerral, Michelle

    2015-01-01

    Objective. To explore differences according to sex in sociosexuality and infidelity in individuals with TBI and in healthy controls. Participants. Forty-two individuals with mild, moderate, and severe TBI having completed a postacute TBI rehabilitation program, at least six months after injury, and 47 healthy controls. Main Measures. Sociosexual Orientation Inventory-Revised (SOI-R) and Attitudes toward Infidelity Scale. Results. Overall, men score significantly higher than women in sociosexu...

  14. Sex differences in the clinical characteristics and brain gray matter volume alterations in unmedicated patients with major depressive disorder.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Xiao; Peng, Zugui; Ma, Xiaojuan; Meng, Yajing; Li, Mingli; Zhang, Jian; Song, Xiuliu; Liu, Ye; Fan, Huanhuan; Zhao, Liansheng; Deng, Wei; Li, Tao; Ma, Xiaohong

    2017-05-30

    This study was to explore the sex differences in clinical characteristics and brain gray matter volume (GMV) alterations in 29 male patients with major depressive disorder (MDDm), 53 female patients with MDD (MDDf), and in 29 male and 53 female matched healthy controls. Maps of GMV were constructed using magnetic resonance imaging data and compared between groups. We evaluated clinical symptoms using the Hamilton Rating Scale for Depression and obtained a total score and five syndrome scores. A two-factor ANCOVA model was specified using SPM8, with sex and diagnosis as the between-subject factors. We found that: (1) significant GMV increase in the left cerebellum and GMV reduction in the bilateral middle temporal gyrus and left ventral medial prefrontal gyrus occurred selectively in male patients, while the GMV reduction in the left lingual gyrus and dorsal medial prefrontal gyrus occurred selectively in female patients; (2) MDDf may have experienced more severe sleep disturbance than MDDm; and (3) the severity of sleep symptom could be predicted by the sex specific brain structural alterations in depressions. These findings suggest that sex specific anatomical alterations existed in MDD, and these alterations were associated with the clinical symptoms.

  15. Strain and sex differences in puberty onset and the effects of THC administration on weight gain and brain volumes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Keeley, R J; Trow, J; McDonald, R J

    2015-10-01

    The use of recreational marijuana is widespread and frequently begins and persists through adolescence. Some research has shown negative consequences of adolescent marijuana use, but this is not seen across studies, and certain factors, like genetic background and sex, may influence the results. It is critical to identify which characteristics predispose an individual to be susceptible to the negative consequences of chronic exposure to marijuana in adolescence on brain health and behavior. To this end, using males and females of two strains of rats, Long-Evans hooded (LER) and Wistar (WR) rats, we explored whether these anatomically and behaviorally dimorphic strains demonstrated differences in puberty onset and strain-specific effects of adolescent exposure to Δ9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the main psychoactive component of marijuana. Daily 5 mg/kg treatment began on the day of puberty onset and continued for 14 days. Of particular interest were metrics of growth and volumetric estimates of brain areas involved in cognition that contain high densities of cannabinoid receptors, including the hippocampus and its subregions, the amygdala, and the frontal cortex. Brain volumetrics were analyzed immediately following the treatment period. LER and WR females started puberty at different ages, but no strain differences were observed in brain volumes. THC decreased weight gain throughout the treatment period for all groups. Only the hippocampus and some of its subregions were affected by THC, and increased volumes with THC administration was observed exclusively in females, regardless of strain. Long-term treatment of THC did not affect all individuals equally, and females displayed evidence of increased sensitivity to the effects of THC, and by extension, marijuana. Identifying differences in adolescent physiology of WR and LER rats could help determine the cause for strain and sex differences in brain and behavior of adults and help to refine the use of animal models

  16. Sex differences in the functional lateralization of emotion and decision making in the human brain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reber, Justin; Tranel, Daniel

    2017-01-02

    Dating back to the case of Phineas Gage, decades of neuropsychological research have shown that the ventromedial prefrontal cortex (vmPFC) is crucial to both real-world social functioning and abstract decision making in the laboratory (see, e.g., Stuss et al., ; Bechara et al., 1994; Damasio et al., ). Previous research has shown that the relationship between the laterality of individuals' vmPFC lesions and neuropsychological performance is moderated by their sex, whereby there are more severe social, emotional, and decision-making impairments in men with right-side vmPFC lesions and in women with left-side vmPFC lesions (Tranel et al., 2005; Sutterer et al., 2015). We conducted a selective review of studies examining the effect of vmPFC lesions on emotion and decision making and found further evidence of sex-related differences in the lateralization of function not only in the vmPFC but also in other neurological structures associated with decision making and emotion. This Mini-Review suggests that both sex and laterality effects warrant more careful consideration in the scientific literature. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  17. Removal of reproductive suppression reveals latent sex differences in brain steroid hormone receptors in naked mole-rats, Heterocephalus glaber.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Swift-Gallant, Ashlyn; Mo, Kaiguo; Peragine, Deane E; Monks, D Ashley; Holmes, Melissa M

    2015-01-01

    Naked mole-rats are eusocial mammals, living in large colonies with a single breeding female and 1-3 breeding males. Breeders are socially dominant, and only the breeders exhibit traditional sex differences in circulating gonadal steroid hormones and reproductive behaviors. Non-reproductive subordinates also fail to show sex differences in overall body size, external genital morphology, and non-reproductive behaviors. However, subordinates can transition to breeding status if removed from their colony and housed with an opposite-sex conspecific, suggesting the presence of latent sex differences. Here, we assessed the expression of steroid hormone receptor and aromatase messenger RNA (mRNA) in the brains of males and females as they transitioned in social and reproductive status. We compared in-colony subordinates to opposite-sex subordinate pairs that were removed from their colony for either 1 day, 1 week, 1 month, or until they became breeders (i.e., produced a litter). Diencephalic tissue was collected and mRNA of androgen receptor (Ar), estrogen receptor alpha (Esr1), progesterone receptor (Pgr), and aromatase (Cyp19a1) was measured using qPCR. Testosterone, 17β-estradiol, and progesterone from serum were also measured. As early as 1 week post-removal, males exhibited increased diencephalic Ar mRNA and circulating testosterone, whereas females had increased Cyp19a1 mRNA in the diencephalon. At 1 month post-removal, females exhibited increased 17β-estradiol and progesterone. The largest changes in steroid hormone receptors were observed in breeders. Breeding females had a threefold increase in Cyp19a1 and fivefold increases in Esr1 and Pgr, whereas breeding males had reduced Pgr and increased Ar. These data demonstrate that sex differences in circulating gonadal steroids and hypothalamic gene expression emerge weeks to months after subordinate animals are removed from reproductive suppression in their home colony.

  18. Sex differences in cognitive regulation of psychosocial achievement stress: brain and behavior.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kogler, Lydia; Gur, Ruben C; Derntl, Birgit

    2015-03-01

    Although cognitive regulation of emotion has been extensively examined, there is a lack of studies assessing cognitive regulation in stressful achievement situations. This study used functional magnetic resonance imaging in 23 females and 20 males to investigate cognitive downregulation of negative, stressful sensations during a frequently used psychosocial stress task. Additionally, subjective responses, cognitive regulation strategies, salivary cortisol, and skin conductance response were assessed. Subjective response supported the experimental manipulation by showing higher anger and negative affect ratings after stress regulation than after the mere exposure to stress. On a neural level, right middle frontal gyrus (MFG) and right superior temporal gyrus (STG) were more strongly activated during regulation than nonregulation, whereas the hippocampus was less activated during regulation. Sex differences were evident: after regulation females expressed higher subjective stress ratings than males, and these ratings were associated with right hippocampal activation. In the nonregulation block, females showed greater activation of the left amygdala and the right STG during stress than males while males recruited the putamen more robustly in this condition. Thus, cognitive regulation of stressful achievement situations seems to induce additional stress, to recruit regions implicated in attention integration and working memory and to deactivate memory retrieval. Stress itself is associated with greater activation of limbic as well as attention areas in females than males. Additionally, activation of the memory system during cognitive regulation of stress is associated with greater perceived stress in females. Sex differences in cognitive regulation strategies merit further investigation that can guide sex sensitive interventions for stress-associated disorders. © 2014 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  19. Sex differences, gender and addiction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Becker, Jill B; McClellan, Michele L; Reed, Beth Glover

    2017-01-02

    This review discusses alcohol and other forms of drug addiction as both a sociocultural and biological phenomenon. Sex differences and gender are not solely determined by biology, nor are they entirely sociocultural. The interactions among biological, environmental, sociocultural, and developmental influences result in phenotypes that may be more masculine or more feminine. These gender-related sex differences in the brain can influence the responses to drugs of abuse, progressive changes in the brain after exposure to drugs of abuse and whether addiction results from drug-taking experiences. In addition, the basic laboratory evidence for sex differences is discussed within the context of four types of sex/gender differences. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  20. Sex difference in cue strategy in a modified version of the Morris water task: correlations between brain and behaviour.

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    Robin J Keeley

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Sex differences in spatial memory function have been reported with mixed results in the literature, with some studies showing male advantages and others showing no differences. When considering estrus cycle in females, results are mixed at to whether high or low circulating estradiol results in an advantage in spatial navigation tasks. Research involving humans and rodents has demonstrated males preferentially employ Euclidean strategies and utilize geometric cues in order to spatially navigate, whereas females employ landmark strategies and cues in order to spatially navigate. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: This study used the water-based snowcone maze in order to assess male and female preference for landmark or geometric cues, with specific emphasis placed on the effects of estrus cycle phase for female rat. Performance and preference for the geometric cue was examined in relation to total hippocampal and hippocampal subregions (CA1&2, CA3 and dentate gyrus volumes and entorhinal cortex thickness in order to determine the relation between strategy and spatial performance and brain area size. The study revealed that males outperformed females overall during training trials, relied on the geometric cue when the platform was moved and showed significant correlations between entorhinal cortex thickness and spatial memory performance. No gross differences in behavioural performance was observed within females when accounting for cyclicity, and only total hippocampal volume was correlated with performance during the learning trials. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: This study demonstrates the sex-specific use of cues and brain areas in a spatial learning task.

  1. Sex differences in spatiotemporal expression of AR, ERα, and ERβ mRNA in the perinatal mouse brain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mogi, Kazutaka; Takanashi, Haruka; Nagasawa, Miho; Kikusui, Takefumi

    2015-01-01

    It has been shown that every masculinized function might be organized by a particular contribution of androgens vs. estrogens in a critical time window. Here, we aimed to investigate the sex differences in brain testosterone levels and in the spatiotemporal dynamics of steroid receptor mRNA expression in perinatal mice, by using enzyme immunoassay and real-time PCR, respectively. We found that testosterone levels in the forebrain transiently increased around birth in male mice. During the perinatal period, levels of androgen receptor mRNA in the hypothalamus (hypo) and prefrontal cortex (PFC) were higher in male mice than in female mice. Estrogen receptor α (ERα) mRNA levels in the hypo and hippocampus were higher in male mice than in female mice before birth. In contrast, ERβ mRNA expression in the PFC was higher in female mice immediately after birth. These spatiotemporal sex differences in steroid receptor expression might contribute to organizing sex differences of not only reproductive function, but also anxiety, stress responses, and cognition in mice. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  2. Endoplasmic reticulum stress in the brain subfornical organ contributes to sex differences in angiotensin-dependent hypertension in rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dai, S-Y; Fan, J; Shen, Y; He, J-J; Peng, W

    2016-05-01

    Endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress in the brain subfornical organ (SFO), a key cardiovascular regulatory centre, has been implicated in angiotensin (ANG) II-induced hypertension in males; however, the contribution of ER stress to ANG II-induced hypertension in females is unknown. Female hormones have been shown to prevent ER stress in the periphery. We tested the hypothesis that females are less susceptible to ANG II-induced SFO ER stress than males, leading to sex differences in hypertension. Male, intact and ovariectomized (OVX) female rats received a continuous 2-week subcutaneous infusion of ANG II or saline. Additional male, intact and OVX female rats received intracerebroventricular (ICV) injection of ER stress inducer tunicamycin. ANG II, but not saline, increased blood pressure (BP) in both males and females, but intact females exhibited smaller increase in BP and less depressor response to ganglionic blockade compared with males or OVX females. Molecular studies revealed that ANG II elevated expression of ER stress biomarkers and Fra-like activity in the SFO in both males and females; however, elevations in these parameters were less in intact females than in males or OVX females. Moreover, ICV tunicamycin induced smaller elevation in BP and less increase in expression of ER stress biomarkers in the SFO in intact females compared with males or OVX females. The results suggest that differences in ANG II-induced brain ER stress between males and females contribute to sex differences in ANG II-mediated hypertension and that oestrogen protects females against ANG II-induced brain ER stress. © 2015 Scandinavian Physiological Society. Published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  3. Sex differences and structural brain maturation from childhood to early adulthood

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Koolschijn, P.C.M.P.; Crone, E.A.

    2013-01-01

    Recent advances in structural brain imaging have demonstrated that brain development continues through childhood and adolescence. In the present cross-sectional study, structural MRI data from 442 typically developing individuals (range 8–30) were analyzed to examine and replicate the relationship

  4. Sex Differences in Brain Volume Are Related to Specific Skills, Not to General Intelligence

    Science.gov (United States)

    Burgaleta, Miguel; Head, Kevin; Alvarez-Linera, Juan; Martinez, Kenia; Escorial, Sergio; Haier, Richard; Colom, Roberto

    2012-01-01

    It has been proposed that males would show higher mean scores than females in general intelligence ("g") because (1) men have, on average, larger brains than women, and (2) brain volume correlates with "g." Here we report a failure to support the conclusion derived from these premises. High resolution MRIs were acquired in a sample of one hundred…

  5. Differences according to Sex in Sociosexuality and Infidelity after Traumatic Brain Injury

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jhon Alexander Moreno

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Objective. To explore differences according to sex in sociosexuality and infidelity in individuals with TBI and in healthy controls. Participants. Forty-two individuals with mild, moderate, and severe TBI having completed a postacute TBI rehabilitation program, at least six months after injury, and 47 healthy controls. Main Measures. Sociosexual Orientation Inventory-Revised (SOI-R and Attitudes toward Infidelity Scale. Results. Overall, men score significantly higher than women in sociosexuality. However, there was a nonsignificant trend towards a reduction of sociosexuality levels in men with TBI. Infidelity levels were comparable in healthy controls and individuals with TBI. In individuals with TBI, less acceptance of infidelity was significantly associated with an unrestricted sociosexual orientation, but not in healthy controls. Conclusions. As documented in previous cross-cultural studies, men have higher levels of sociosexuality than women. However, men with TBI showed a tendency towards the reduction of sociosexuality. The possibility of a latent explanatory variable is suggested (e.g., post-TBI neuroendocrinological changes. TBI does not seem to have an impact on infidelity, but individuals with TBI who express less acceptance of infidelity also report a more promiscuous mating strategy regarding their behavior, attitudes, and desire. Theoretical implications are discussed in terms of evolutionary theories of human sexuality and neuropsychology.

  6. Differences according to Sex in Sociosexuality and Infidelity after Traumatic Brain Injury.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moreno, Jhon Alexander; McKerral, Michelle

    2015-01-01

    To explore differences according to sex in sociosexuality and infidelity in individuals with TBI and in healthy controls. Forty-two individuals with mild, moderate, and severe TBI having completed a postacute TBI rehabilitation program, at least six months after injury, and 47 healthy controls. Sociosexual Orientation Inventory-Revised (SOI-R) and Attitudes toward Infidelity Scale. Overall, men score significantly higher than women in sociosexuality. However, there was a nonsignificant trend towards a reduction of sociosexuality levels in men with TBI. Infidelity levels were comparable in healthy controls and individuals with TBI. In individuals with TBI, less acceptance of infidelity was significantly associated with an unrestricted sociosexual orientation, but not in healthy controls. As documented in previous cross-cultural studies, men have higher levels of sociosexuality than women. However, men with TBI showed a tendency towards the reduction of sociosexuality. The possibility of a latent explanatory variable is suggested (e.g., post-TBI neuroendocrinological changes). TBI does not seem to have an impact on infidelity, but individuals with TBI who express less acceptance of infidelity also report a more promiscuous mating strategy regarding their behavior, attitudes, and desire. Theoretical implications are discussed in terms of evolutionary theories of human sexuality and neuropsychology.

  7. Sex differences in brain activation patterns during processing of positively and negatively valenced emotional words.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hofer, Alex; Siedentopf, Christian M; Ischebeck, Anja; Rettenbacher, Maria A; Verius, Michael; Felber, Stephan; Wolfgang Fleischhacker, W

    2007-01-01

    Previous studies have suggested that men and women process emotional stimuli differently. In this study, we used event-related functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) to investigate gender differences in regional cerebral activity during the perception of positive or negative emotions. The experiment comprised two emotional conditions (positively/negatively valenced words) during which fMRI data were acquired. Thirty-eight healthy volunteers (19 males, 19 females) were investigated. A direct comparison of brain activation between men and women revealed differential activation in the right putamen, the right superior temporal gyrus, and the left supramarginal gyrus during processing of positively valenced words versus non-words for women versus men. By contrast, during processing of negatively valenced words versus non-words, relatively greater activation was seen in the left perirhinal cortex and hippocampus for women versus men, and in the right supramarginal gyrus for men versus women. Our findings suggest gender-related neural responses to emotional stimuli and could contribute to the understanding of mechanisms underlying the gender disparity of neuropsychiatric diseases such as mood disorders.

  8. Sex differences and autism: brain function during verbal fluency and mental rotation.

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    Felix D C C Beacher

    Full Text Available Autism spectrum conditions (ASC affect more males than females. This suggests that the neurobiology of autism: 1 may overlap with mechanisms underlying typical sex-differentiation or 2 alternately reflect sex-specificity in how autism is expressed in males and females. Here we used functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI to test these alternate hypotheses. Fifteen men and fourteen women with Asperger syndrome (AS, and sixteen typically developing men and sixteen typically developing women underwent fMRI during performance of mental rotation and verbal fluency tasks. All groups performed the tasks equally well. On the verbal fluency task, despite equivalent task-performance, both males and females with AS showed enhanced activation of left occipitoparietal and inferior prefrontal activity compared to controls. During mental rotation, there was a significant diagnosis-by-sex interaction across occipital, temporal, parietal, middle frontal regions, with greater activation in AS males and typical females compared to AS females and typical males. These findings suggest a complex relationship between autism and sex that is differentially expressed in verbal and visuospatial domains.

  9. Sex differences and autism: brain function during verbal fluency and mental rotation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beacher, Felix D C C; Radulescu, Eugenia; Minati, Ludovico; Baron-Cohen, Simon; Lombardo, Michael V; Lai, Meng-Chuan; Walker, Anne; Howard, Dawn; Gray, Marcus A; Harrison, Neil A; Critchley, Hugo D

    2012-01-01

    Autism spectrum conditions (ASC) affect more males than females. This suggests that the neurobiology of autism: 1) may overlap with mechanisms underlying typical sex-differentiation or 2) alternately reflect sex-specificity in how autism is expressed in males and females. Here we used functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) to test these alternate hypotheses. Fifteen men and fourteen women with Asperger syndrome (AS), and sixteen typically developing men and sixteen typically developing women underwent fMRI during performance of mental rotation and verbal fluency tasks. All groups performed the tasks equally well. On the verbal fluency task, despite equivalent task-performance, both males and females with AS showed enhanced activation of left occipitoparietal and inferior prefrontal activity compared to controls. During mental rotation, there was a significant diagnosis-by-sex interaction across occipital, temporal, parietal, middle frontal regions, with greater activation in AS males and typical females compared to AS females and typical males. These findings suggest a complex relationship between autism and sex that is differentially expressed in verbal and visuospatial domains.

  10. Time-related sex differences in cerebral hypoperfusion-induced brain injury

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stanojlović Miloš

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Although the model of cerebral hypoperfusion in rats has been a matter of many investigations over the years, the exact intracellular and biochemical mechanisms that lead to neuron loss and memory decline have not been clearly identified. In the current study, we examined whether cerebral hypoperfusion causes changes in hippocampal protein expression of apoptotic markers in the synaptosomal fraction and neurodegeneration in a time-dependent and sex-specific manner. Adult male and female Wistar rats were divided into two main groups, controls that underwent sham operation, and animals subjected to permanent bilateral occlusion of common carotid arteries. Both male and female rats were killed 3, 7 or 90 days following the insult. The obtained results indicate that the peak of processes that lead to apoptosis occured on postoperative day 7 and that they were more prominent in males, indicating that neuroprotective effects of certain substances (planned for future experiments, should be tested at this time point. [Projekat Ministarstva nauke Republike Srbije, br. 173044 i br. 41014

  11. Age and sex differences in oxytocin and vasopressin V1a receptor binding densities in the rat brain: focus on the social decision-making network.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, Caroline J W; Poehlmann, Max L; Li, Sara; Ratnaseelan, Aarane M; Bredewold, Remco; Veenema, Alexa H

    2017-03-01

    Oxytocin (OT) and vasopressin (AVP) regulate various social behaviors via activation of the OT receptor (OTR) and the AVP V1a receptor (V1aR) in the brain. Social behavior often differs across development and between the sexes, yet our understanding of age and sex differences in brain OTR and V1aR binding remains incomplete. Here, we provide an extensive analysis of OTR and V1aR binding density throughout the brain in juvenile and adult male and female rats, with a focus on regions within the social decision-making network. OTR and V1aR binding density were higher in juveniles than in adults in regions associated with reward and socio-spatial memory and higher in adults than in juveniles in key regions of the social decision-making network and in cortical regions. We discuss possible implications of these shifts in OTR and V1aR binding density for the age-specific regulation of social behavior. Furthermore, sex differences in OTR and V1aR binding density were less numerous than age differences. The direction of these sex differences was region-specific for OTR but consistently higher in females than in males for V1aR. Finally, almost all sex differences in OTR and V1aR binding density were already present in juveniles and occurred in regions with denser binding in adults compared to juveniles. Possible implications of these sex differences for the sex-specific regulation of behavior, as well potential underlying mechanisms, are discussed. Overall, these findings provide an important framework for testing age- and sex-specific roles of OTR and V1aR in the regulation of social behavior.

  12. Sex differences in the interacting roles of impulsivity and positive alcohol expectancy in problem drinking: A structural brain imaging study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jaime S. Ide

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Alcohol expectancy and impulsivity are implicated in alcohol misuse. However, how these two risk factors interact to determine problem drinking and whether men and women differ in these risk processes remain unclear. In 158 social drinkers (86 women assessed for Alcohol Use Disorder Identification Test (AUDIT, positive alcohol expectancy, and Barratt impulsivity, we examined sex differences in these risk processes. Further, with structural brain imaging, we examined the neural bases underlying the relationship between these risk factors and problem drinking. The results of general linear modeling showed that alcohol expectancy best predicted problem drinking in women, whereas in men as well as in the combined group alcohol expectancy and impulsivity interacted to best predict problem drinking. Alcohol expectancy was associated with decreased gray matter volume (GMV of the right posterior insula in women and the interaction of alcohol expectancy and impulsivity was associated with decreased GMV of the left thalamus in women and men combined and in men alone, albeit less significantly. These risk factors mediated the correlation between GMV and problem drinking. Conversely, models where GMV resulted from problem drinking were not supported. These new findings reveal distinct psychological factors that dispose men and women to problem drinking. Although mediation analyses did not determine a causal link, GMV reduction in the insula and thalamus may represent neural phenotype of these risk processes rather than the consequence of alcohol consumption in non-dependent social drinkers. The results add to the alcohol imaging literature which has largely focused on dependent individuals and help elucidate alterations in brain structures that may contribute to the transition from social to habitual drinking.

  13. Sex differences in the interacting roles of impulsivity and positive alcohol expectancy in problem drinking: A structural brain imaging study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ide, Jaime S; Zhornitsky, Simon; Hu, Sien; Zhang, Sheng; Krystal, John H; Li, Chiang-Shan R

    2017-01-01

    Alcohol expectancy and impulsivity are implicated in alcohol misuse. However, how these two risk factors interact to determine problem drinking and whether men and women differ in these risk processes remain unclear. In 158 social drinkers (86 women) assessed for Alcohol Use Disorder Identification Test (AUDIT), positive alcohol expectancy, and Barratt impulsivity, we examined sex differences in these risk processes. Further, with structural brain imaging, we examined the neural bases underlying the relationship between these risk factors and problem drinking. The results of general linear modeling showed that alcohol expectancy best predicted problem drinking in women, whereas in men as well as in the combined group alcohol expectancy and impulsivity interacted to best predict problem drinking. Alcohol expectancy was associated with decreased gray matter volume (GMV) of the right posterior insula in women and the interaction of alcohol expectancy and impulsivity was associated with decreased GMV of the left thalamus in women and men combined and in men alone, albeit less significantly. These risk factors mediated the correlation between GMV and problem drinking. Conversely, models where GMV resulted from problem drinking were not supported. These new findings reveal distinct psychological factors that dispose men and women to problem drinking. Although mediation analyses did not determine a causal link, GMV reduction in the insula and thalamus may represent neural phenotype of these risk processes rather than the consequence of alcohol consumption in non-dependent social drinkers. The results add to the alcohol imaging literature which has largely focused on dependent individuals and help elucidate alterations in brain structures that may contribute to the transition from social to habitual drinking.

  14. Sex differences in the risk profile and male predominance in silent brain infarction in community-dwelling elderly subjects. The Sefuri brain MRI study

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Takashima, Yuki; Mori, Takahiro; Hashimoto, Manabu; Yuzuriha, Takefumi; Yao, Hiroshi; Miwa, Yoshikazu; Sasaguri, Toshiyuki; Uchino, Akira

    2010-01-01

    Although brain infarction is more common in men, the male predominance of silent brain infarction (SBI) was inconsistent in the earlier studies. This study was to examine the relationship between sex differences in the risk profile and SBI. We conducted a population-based, cross-sectional analysis of cardiovascular risk factors and SBI on MRI. We asked all the female participants about the age at natural menopause and parity. SBI was detected in 77 (11.3%) of 680 participants (266 men and 414 women) with a mean age of 64.5 (range 40-93) years. In the logistic analysis, age (odds ratio (OR)=2.760/10 years, 95% confidence interval (CI)=2.037-3.738), hypertension (OR=3.465, 95% CI=1.991-6.031), alcohol intake (OR=2.494, 95% CI=1.392-4.466) and smoking (OR=2.302, 95% CI=1.161-4.565) were significant factors concerning SBI. Although SBI was more prevalent among men, this sex difference disappeared on the multivariate model after adjustment for other confounders. In 215 women aged 60 years or older, age at natural menopause, early menopause, duration of menopause, number of children and age at the last parity were not significantly associated with SBI after adjustment for age. Hypertension and age were considered to be the major risk factors for SBI in community-dwelling people. Male predominance in SBI was largely due to higher prevalence of alcohol habit and smoking in men than in women in our population. (author)

  15. Effects of Sex Steroids in the Human Brain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nguyen, Tuong-Vi; Ducharme, Simon; Karama, Sherif

    2017-11-01

    Sex steroids are thought to play a critical developmental role in shaping both cortical and subcortical structures in the human brain. Periods of profound changes in sex steroids invariably coincide with the onset of sex differences in mental health vulnerability, highlighting the importance of sex steroids in determining sexual differentiation of the brain. Yet, most of the evidence for the central effects of sex steroids relies on non-human studies, as several challenges have limited our understanding of these effects in humans: the lack of systematic assessment of the human sex steroid metabolome, the different developmental trajectories of specific sex steroids, the impact of genetic variation and epigenetic changes, and the plethora of interactions between sex steroids, sex chromosomes, neurotransmitters, and other hormonal systems. Here we review how multimodal strategies may be employed to bridge the gap between the basic and clinical understanding of sex steroid-related changes in the human brain.

  16. Sex differences in addiction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Becker, Jill B

    2016-12-01

    Women exhibit more rapid escalation from casual drug taking to addiction, exhibit a greater withdrawal response with abstinence, and tend to exhibit greater vulnerability than men in terms of treatment outcome. In rodents, short-term estradiol intake in female rats enhances acquisition and escalation of drug taking, motivation for drugs of abuse, and relapse-like behaviors. There is also a sex difference in the dopamine response in the nucleus accumbens. Ovariectomized female rats exhibit a smaller initial dopamine increase after cocaine treatment than castrated males. Estradiol treatment of ovariectomized female rats enhances stimulated dopamine release in the dorsolateral striatum, but not in the nucleus accumbens, resulting in a sex difference in the balance between these two dopaminergic projections. In the situation where drug-taking behavior becomes habitual, dopamine release has been reported to be enhanced in the dorsolateral striatum and attenuated in the nucleus accumbens. The sex difference in the balance between these neural systems is proposed to underlie sex differences in addiction.

  17. Autism attenuates sex differences in brain structure: a combined voxel-based morphometry and diffusion tensor imaging study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beacher, F D; Minati, L; Baron-Cohen, S; Lombardo, M V; Lai, M-C; Gray, M A; Harrison, N A; Critchley, H D

    2012-01-01

    It has been proposed that autism spectrums condition may represent a form of extreme male brain (EMB), a notion supported by psychometric, behavioral, and endocrine evidence. Yet, limited data are presently available evaluating this hypothesis in terms of neuroanatomy. Here, we investigated sex-related anatomic features in adults with AS, a "pure" form of autism not involving major developmental delay. Males and females with AS and healthy controls (n = 28 and 30, respectively) were recruited. Structural MR imaging was performed to measure overall gray and white matter volume and to assess regional effects by means of VBM. DTI was used to investigate the integrity of the main white matter tracts. Significant interactions were found between sex and diagnosis in total white matter volume, regional gray matter volume in the right parietal operculum, and fractional anisotropy (FA) in the body of the CC, cingulum, and CR. Post hoc comparisons indicated that the typical sexual dimorphism found in controls, whereby males have larger FA and total white matter volume, was absent or attenuated in participants with AS. Our results point to a fundamental role of the factors that underlie sex-specific brain differentiation in the etiology of autism.

  18. Macro- and microelements in the rat liver, kidneys, and brain tissues; sex differences and effect of blood removal by perfusion in vivo.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Orct, Tatjana; Jurasović, Jasna; Micek, Vedran; Karaica, Dean; Sabolić, Ivan

    2017-03-01

    Concentrations of macro- and microelements in animal organs indicate the animal health status and represent reference data for animal experiments. Their levels in blood and tissues could be different between sexes, and could be different with and without blood in tissues. To test these hypotheses, in adult female and male rats the concentrations of various elements were measured in whole blood, blood plasma, and tissues from blood-containing (nonperfused) and blood-free liver, kidneys, and brain (perfused in vivo with an elements-free buffer). In these samples, 6 macroelements (Na, Mg, P, S, K, Ca) and 14 microelements (Fe, Mn, Co, Cu, Zn, Se, I, As, Cd, Hg, Pb, Li, B, Sr) were determined by inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry following nitric acid digestion. In blood and plasma, female- or male-dominant sex differences were observed for 6 and 5 elements, respectively. In nonperfused organs, sex differences were observed for 3 (liver, brain) or 9 (kidneys) elements, whereas in perfused organs, similar differences were detected for 9 elements in the liver, 5 in the kidneys, and none in the brain. In females, perfused organs had significantly lower concentrations of 4, 5, and 2, and higher concentrations of 10, 4, and 7 elements, respectively, in the liver, kidneys, and brain. In males, perfusion caused lower concentrations of 4, 7, and 2, and higher concentrations of 1, 1, and 7 elements, respectively, in the liver, kidneys, and brain. Therefore, the residual blood in organs can significantly influence tissue concentrations of various elements and their sex-dependency. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier GmbH. All rights reserved.

  19. Sex and the Migraine Brain

    Science.gov (United States)

    Borsook, D; Erpelding, N; Lebel, A; Linnman, C; Veggeberg, R; Grant, PE; Buettner, C; Becerra, L; Burstein, R

    2014-01-01

    The brain responds differently to environmental and internal signals that relates to the stage of development of neural systems. While genetic and epigenetic factors contribute to a premorbid state, hormonal fluctuations in women may alter the set point of migraine. The cyclic surges of gonadal hormones may directly alter neuronal, glial and astrocyte function throughout the brain. Estrogen is mainly excitatory and progesterone inhibitory on brain neuronal systems. These changes contribute to the allostatic load of the migraine condition that most notably starts at puberty in girls. PMID:24662368

  20. Are age and sex differences in brain oxytocin receptors related to maternal and infanticidal behavior in naïve mice?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Olazábal, Daniel E; Alsina-Llanes, Marcela

    2016-01-01

    This article is part of a Special Issue "Parental Care". There is significant variability in the behavioral responses displayed by naïve young and adult mice when first exposed to pups. This variability has been associated with differences in the expression of oxytocin receptors (OXTRs) in the brain in several species. Experiment I investigated the behavioral responses of juvenile, adolescent, and adult CB57BL/6 males and females when first exposed to pups. We found an age increase in maternal females (11% of juveniles, 20% of adolescents, and 50% of young adults), and infanticidal males (0% of juveniles, 30% of adolescents, 44.5% of young adults, and 100% of older adults). Experiment II investigated OXTR density in the brain of juvenile and adult mice. Our results revealed an age decline in the density of OXTR in several brain regions, including the lateral septum, cingulated and posterior paraventricular thalamic nucleus in both males and females. Adult females had higher OXTR density in the ventromedial nucleus/postero-ventral hypothalamus (VMH) and the accessory olfactory bulb (AOB), but lower density in the ventral region of the lateral septum (LSv) than juveniles. Males had lower OXTR density in the anterior olfactory area (AOA) compared to juveniles. No age or sex differences were found in the medial preoptic area, and amygdaloid nuclei, among other brain regions. This study suggests that 1) maturation of parental and infanticidal behavioral responses is not reached until adulthood; 2) the pattern of development of OXTR in the mouse brain is unique, region specific, and differs from that observed in other rodents; 3) either up or down regulation of OXTR in a few brain regions (VMH/AOB/LSv/AOA) might contribute to age or sex differences in parental or infanticidal behavior. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  1. Sex Differences in Brain Thyroid Hormone Levels during Early Post-Hatching Development in Zebra Finch (Taeniopygia guttata.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shinji Yamaguchi

    Full Text Available Thyroid hormones are closely linked to the hatching process in precocial birds. Previously, we showed that thyroid hormones in brain had a strong impact on filial imprinting, an early learning behavior in newly hatched chicks; brain 3,5,3'-triiodothyronine (T3 peaks around hatching and imprinting training induces additional T3 release, thus, extending the sensitive period for imprinting and enabling subsequent other learning. On the other hand, blood thyroid hormone levels have been reported to increase gradually after hatching in altricial species, but it remains unknown how the brain thyroid hormone levels change during post-hatching development of altricial birds. Here, we determined the changes in serum and brain thyroid hormone levels of a passerine songbird species, the zebra finch using radioimmunoassay. In the serum, we found a gradual increase in thyroid hormone levels during post-hatching development, as well as differences between male and female finches. In the brain, there was clear surge in the hormone levels during development in males and females coinciding with the time of fledging, but the onset of the surge of thyroxine (T4 in males preceded that of females, whereas the onset of the surge of T3 in males succeeded that of females. These findings provide a basis for understanding the functions of thyroid hormones during early development and learning in altricial birds.

  2. Sex Differences in Brain Thyroid Hormone Levels during Early Post-Hatching Development in Zebra Finch (Taeniopygia guttata).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yamaguchi, Shinji; Hayase, Shin; Aoki, Naoya; Takehara, Akihiko; Ishigohoka, Jun; Matsushima, Toshiya; Wada, Kazuhiro; Homma, Koichi J

    2017-01-01

    Thyroid hormones are closely linked to the hatching process in precocial birds. Previously, we showed that thyroid hormones in brain had a strong impact on filial imprinting, an early learning behavior in newly hatched chicks; brain 3,5,3'-triiodothyronine (T3) peaks around hatching and imprinting training induces additional T3 release, thus, extending the sensitive period for imprinting and enabling subsequent other learning. On the other hand, blood thyroid hormone levels have been reported to increase gradually after hatching in altricial species, but it remains unknown how the brain thyroid hormone levels change during post-hatching development of altricial birds. Here, we determined the changes in serum and brain thyroid hormone levels of a passerine songbird species, the zebra finch using radioimmunoassay. In the serum, we found a gradual increase in thyroid hormone levels during post-hatching development, as well as differences between male and female finches. In the brain, there was clear surge in the hormone levels during development in males and females coinciding with the time of fledging, but the onset of the surge of thyroxine (T4) in males preceded that of females, whereas the onset of the surge of T3 in males succeeded that of females. These findings provide a basis for understanding the functions of thyroid hormones during early development and learning in altricial birds.

  3. Sex-related differences in the muscarinic acetylcholinergic receptor in the healthy human brain. A positron emission tomography study

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Yoshida, Tsuyoshi; Kuwabara, Yasuo; Sasaki, Masayuki; Ichimiya, Atsushi; Takita, Masashi; Ogomori, Koji; Masuda, Kouji [Kyushu Univ., Fukuoka (Japan). Graduate School of Medical Sciences; Fukumura, Toshimitsu; Ichiya, Yuichi

    2000-04-01

    We evaluated the sex-related differences in the decline of the cerebral muscarinic acetylcholinergic receptor (mACh-R) due to aging by using {sup 11}C-N-methyl-4-piperidyl benzilate ({sup 11}C-NMPB) and positron emission tomography (PET). The subjects consisted of 37 (20 males and 17 females) healthy volunteers. The {sup 11}C-NMPB uptake was evaluated by the ratio method (regional {sup 11}C-NMPB uptake/Cerebellar {sup 11}C-NMPB uptake; rNMPB ratio). The correlation between sex, aging, and the rNMPB ratio in normal aging was evaluated by a multiple regression analysis. The rNMPB ratio was higher in females than in males throughout the entire cerebral region (p<0.01-p<0.0001) and the rNMPB ratio might thus possibly decline with age more rapidly in females. Our study therefore revealed the existence of sex-related differences in the cerebral mACh-R. (author)

  4. Sex-related differences in the muscarinic acetylcholinergic receptor in the healthy human brain. A positron emission tomography study

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Yoshida, Tsuyoshi; Kuwabara, Yasuo; Sasaki, Masayuki; Ichimiya, Atsushi; Takita, Masashi; Ogomori, Koji; Masuda, Kouji; Fukumura, Toshimitsu; Ichiya, Yuichi

    2000-01-01

    We evaluated the sex-related differences in the decline of the cerebral muscarinic acetylcholinergic receptor (mACh-R) due to aging by using 11 C-N-methyl-4-piperidyl benzilate ( 11 C-NMPB) and positron emission tomography (PET). The subjects consisted of 37 (20 males and 17 females) healthy volunteers. The 11 C-NMPB uptake was evaluated by the ratio method (regional 11 C-NMPB uptake/Cerebellar 11 C-NMPB uptake; rNMPB ratio). The correlation between sex, aging, and the rNMPB ratio in normal aging was evaluated by a multiple regression analysis. The rNMPB ratio was higher in females than in males throughout the entire cerebral region (p<0.01-p<0.0001) and the rNMPB ratio might thus possibly decline with age more rapidly in females. Our study therefore revealed the existence of sex-related differences in the cerebral mACh-R. (author)

  5. Two-hit model of schizophrenia induced by neonatal immune activation and peripubertal stress in rats: Study of sex differences and brain oxidative alterations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Monte, Aline Santos; Mello, Bruna Stefânia Ferreira; Borella, Vládia Célia Moreira; da Silva Araujo, Tatiane; da Silva, Francisco Eliclécio Rodrigues; Sousa, Francisca Cléa F de; de Oliveira, Antônio Carlos Pinheiro; Gama, Clarissa Severino; Seeman, Mary V; Vasconcelos, Silvânia Maria Mendes; Lucena, David Freitas De; Macêdo, Danielle

    2017-07-28

    Schizophrenia is considered to be a developmental disorder with distinctive sex differences. Aiming to simulate the vulnerability of the third trimester of human pregnancy to the developmental course of schizophrenia, an animal model was developed, using neonatal poly(I:C) as a first-hit, and peripubertal stress as a second-hit, i.e. a two-hit model. Since, to date, there have been no references to sex differences in the two-hit model, our study sought to determine sex influences on the development of behavior and brain oxidative change in adult rats submitted to neonatal exposure to poly(I:C) on postnatal days 5-7 as well as peripubertal unpredictable stress (PUS). Our results showed that adult two-hit rats present sex-specific behavioral alterations, with females showing more pronounced deficits in prepulse inhibition of the startle reflex and hyperlocomotion, while males showing more deficits in social interaction. Male and female animals exhibited similar working memory deficits. The levels of the endogenous antioxidant, reduced glutathione, were decreased in the prefrontal cortex (PFC) of both male and female animals exposed to both poly(I:C) and poly(I:C)+PUS. Only females presented decrements in GSH levels in the striatum. Nitrite levels were increased in the PFC of male and in the striatum of female poly(I:C)+PUS rats. Increased lipid peroxidation was observed in the PFC of females and in the striatum of males and females exposed to poly(I:C) and poly(I:C)+PUS. Thus, the present study presents evidence for sex differences in behavior and oxidative brain change induced by a two-hit model of schizophrenia. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  6. Altered Brain Excitability and Increased Anxiety in Mice With Experimental Colitis: Consideration of Hyperalgesia and Sex Differences

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kewir D. Nyuyki

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available Crohn’s disease (CD and ulcerative colitis (UC are incurable lifelong inflammatory bowel diseases (IBD with a rising worldwide incidence. IBD is characterized by diarrhea, rectal bleeding, severe cramping and weight loss. However, there is a growing evidence that IBD is also associated with anxiety- and depression-related disorders, which further increase the societal burden of these diseases. Given the limited knowledge of central nervous system (CNS changes in IBD, we investigated CNS-related comorbidities in a mouse model of experimental colitis induced by dextran sulfate sodium (DSS administration in drinking water for 5 days. In male and female C57BL6J mice, DSS treatment caused increased brain excitability, revealed by a decrease in seizure onset times after intraperitoneal administration of kainic acid. Moreover, both sexes showed increased anxiety-related behavior in the elevated plus-maze (EPM and open field (OF paradigms. We assessed somatic pain levels, because they may influence behavioral responses. Only male mice were hyperalgesic when tested with calibrated von Frey hairs and on the hotplate for mechanical and thermal pain sensitivity respectively. Administration of diazepam (DZP; ip, 1 mg/kg 30 min before EPM rescued the anxious phenotype and improved locomotion, even though it significantly increased thermal sensitivity in both sexes. This indicates that the altered behavioral response is unlikely attributable to an interference with movement due to somatic pain in females. We show that experimental colitis increases CNS excitability in response to administration of kainic acid, and increases anxiety-related behavior as revealed using the EPM and OF tests.

  7. Sex differences and stress across the lifespan

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bale, Tracy L; Epperson, C Neill

    2015-01-01

    Sex differences in stress responses can be found at all stages of life and are related to both the organizational and activational effects of gonadal hormones and to genes on the sex chromosomes. As stress dysregulation is the most common feature across neuropsychiatric diseases, sex differences in how these pathways develop and mature may predict sex-specific periods of vulnerability to disruption and increased disease risk or resilience across the lifespan. The aging brain is also at risk to the effects of stress, where the rapid decline of gonadal hormones in women combined with cellular aging processes promote sex biases in stress dysregulation. In this Review, we discuss potential underlying mechanisms driving sex differences in stress responses and their relevance to disease. Although stress is involved in a much broader range of diseases than neuropsychiatric ones, we highlight here this area and its examples across the lifespan. PMID:26404716

  8. Sex differences and stress across the lifespan.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bale, Tracy L; Epperson, C Neill

    2015-10-01

    Sex differences in stress responses can be found at all stages of life and are related to both the organizational and activational effects of gonadal hormones and to genes on the sex chromosomes. As stress dysregulation is the most common feature across neuropsychiatric diseases, sex differences in how these pathways develop and mature may predict sex-specific periods of vulnerability to disruption and increased disease risk or resilience across the lifespan. The aging brain is also at risk to the effects of stress, where the rapid decline of gonadal hormones in women combined with cellular aging processes promote sex biases in stress dysregulation. In this Review, we discuss potential underlying mechanisms driving sex differences in stress responses and their relevance to disease. Although stress is involved in a much broader range of diseases than neuropsychiatric ones, we highlight here this area and its examples across the lifespan.

  9. Sex differences in addictive disorders.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fattore, Liana; Melis, Miriam; Fadda, Paola; Fratta, Walter

    2014-08-01

    Gender-dependent differences in the rate of initiation and frequency of misuse of addicting drugs have been widely described. Yet, men and women also differ in their propensity to become addicted to other rewarding stimuli (e.g., sex, food) or activities (e.g., gambling, exercising). The goal of the present review is to summarize current evidence for gender differences not only in drug addiction, but also in other forms of addictive behaviours. Thus, we first reviewed studies showing gender-dependent differences in drug addiction, food addiction, compulsive sexual activity, pathological gambling, Internet addiction and physical exercise addiction. Potential risk factors and underlying brain mechanisms are also examined, with particular emphasis given to the role of sex hormones in modulating addictive behaviours. Investigations on factors allowing the pursuit of non-drug rewards to become pathological in men and women are crucial for designing gender-appropriate treatments of both substance and non-substance addictions. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  10. Characterizing the normative profile of 18F-FDG PET brain imaging: sex difference, aging effect, and cognitive reserve.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yoshizawa, Hiroshi; Gazes, Yunglin; Stern, Yaakov; Miyata, Yoko; Uchiyama, Shinichiro

    2014-01-30

    The aim of this study was to investigate findings of positron emission tomography with 18F-fluorodeoxyglucose (18F-FDG PET) in normal subjects to clarify the effects of sex differences, aging, and cognitive reserve on cerebral glucose metabolism. Participants comprised 123 normal adults who underwent 18F-FDG PET and a neuropsychological battery. We used statistical parametric mapping (SPM8) to investigate sex differences, and aging effects. The effects of cognitive reserve on 18F-FDG uptake were investigated using years of education as a proxy. Finally, we studied the effect of cognitive reserve on the recruitment of glucose metabolism in a memory task by dichotomizing the data according to educational level. Our results showed that the overall cerebral glucose metabolism in females was higher than that in males, whereas male participants had higher glucose metabolism in the bilateral inferior temporal gyri and cerebellum than females. Age-related hypometabolism was found in anterior regions, including the anterior cingulate gyrus. These areas are part of the attentional system, which may decline with aging even in healthy elderly individuals. Highly educated subjects revealed focal hypermetabolism in the right hemisphere and lower recruitment of glucose metabolism in memory tasks. This phenomenon is likely a candidate for a neural substrate of cognitive reserve. © 2013 Published by Elsevier Ireland Ltd.

  11. Sex Differences in HIV Infection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scully, Eileen P

    2018-04-01

    This review will outline the multilevel effects of biological sex on HIV acquisition, pathogenesis, treatment response, and prospects for cure. Potential mechanisms will be discussed along with future research directions. HIV acquisition risk is modified by sex hormones and the vaginal microbiome, with the latter acting through both inflammation and local metabolism of pre-exposure prophylaxis drugs. Female sex associates with enhanced risk for non-AIDS morbidities including cardiovascular and cerebrovascular disease, suggesting different inflammatory profiles in men and women. Data from research on HIV cure points to sex differences in viral reservoir dynamics and a direct role for sex hormones in latency maintenance. Biological sex remains an important variable in determining the risk of HIV infection and subsequent viral pathogenesis, and emerging data suggest sex differences relevant to curative interventions. Recruitment of women in HIV clinical research is a pathway to both optimize care for women and to identify novel therapeutics for use in both men and women.

  12. Sex differences in drug abuse.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Becker, Jill B; Hu, Ming

    2008-01-01

    Sex differences are present for all of the phases of drug abuse (initiation, escalation of use, addiction, and relapse following abstinence). While there are some differences among specific classes of abused drugs, the general pattern of sex differences is the same for all drugs of abuse. Females begin regularly self-administering licit and illicit drugs of abuse at lower doses than do males, use escalates more rapidly to addiction, and females are at greater risk for relapse following abstinence. In this review, sex differences in drug abuse are discussed for humans and in animal models. The possible neuroendocrine mechanisms mediating these sex differences are discussed.

  13. Sex differences in behavioral outcome following neonatal hypoxia ischemia: insights from a clinical meta-analysis and a rodent model of induced hypoxic ischemic brain injury.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, Amanda L; Alexander, Michelle; Rosenkrantz, Ted S; Sadek, Mona Lisa; Fitch, R Holly

    2014-04-01

    Hypoxia ischemia (HI; reduced oxygen and/or blood flow to the brain) is one of the most common injuries among preterm infants and term infants with birth complications. Both populations show cognitive/behavioral deficits, including impairments in sensory, learning/memory, and attention domains. Clinical data suggests a sex difference in HI outcomes, with males exhibiting more severe cognitive/behavioral deficits relative to matched females. Our laboratory has also reported more severe behavioral deficits among male rats with induced HI relative to females with comparable injury (Hill et al., 2011a,b). The current study initially examined published clinical studies from the past 20years where long-term IQ outcome scores for matched groups of male and female premature infants were reported separately (IQ being the most common outcome measure). A meta-analysis revealed a female "advantage," as indicated by significantly better scores on performance and full scale IQ (but not verbal IQ) for premature females. We then utilized a rodent model of neonatal HI injury to assess sham and postnatal day 7 (P7) HI male and female rats on a battery of behavioral tasks. Results showed expected deficits in HI male rats, but also showed task-dependent sex differences, with HI males having significantly larger deficits than HI females on some tasks but equivalent deficits on other tasks. In contrast to behavioral results, post mortem neuropathology associated with HI was comparable across sex. These findings suggest: 1) neonatal female "protection" in some behavioral domains, as indexed by superior outcome following early injury relative to males; and 2) female protection may entail sex-specific plasticity or compensation, rather than a reduction in gross neuropathology. Further exploration of the mechanisms underlying this sex effect could aid in neuroprotection efforts for at-risk neonates in general, and males in particular. Moreover, our current report of comparable anatomical

  14. Sexual differences of human brain

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Masoud Pezeshki Rad

    2014-04-01

    Full Text Available During the last decades there has been an increasing interest in studying the differences between males and females. These differences extend from behavioral to cognitive to micro- and macro- neuro-anatomical aspects of human biology. There have been many methods to evaluate these differences and explain their determinants. The most studied cause of this dimorphism is the prenatal sex hormones and their organizational effect on brain and behavior. However, there have been new and recent attentions to hormone's activational influences in puberty and also the effects of genomic imprinting. In this paper, we reviewed the sex differences of brain, the evidences for possible determinants of these differences and also the methods that have been used to discover them. We reviewed the most conspicuous findings with specific attention to macro-anatomical differences based on Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI data. We finally reviewed the findings and the many opportunities for future studies.

  15. Structural and functional sex differences in the human hypothalamus

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Swaab, D. F.; Chung, W. C.; Kruijver, F. P.; Hofman, M. A.; Ishunina, T. A.

    2001-01-01

    Sex differences in the brain may be the basis not only for sex differences in reproduction, gender identity (the feeling of being male or female), and sexual orientation (heterosexuality vs homosexuality), but also for the sex difference in prevalence of psychiatric and neurological diseases ( Swaab

  16. The influence of sex hormones on brain lateralization : Research Programme

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Beking, Tess; Geuze, Reint; Groothuis, Antonius

    2015-01-01

    Between and within sexes individuals differ in lateralization of brain and behaviour that might affect cognitive performance. There is long standing debate to what extent variation in lateralization is due to variation in early or late exposure to sex hormones. We will use two unique data sets to

  17. Sex differences in the effect of acute peripheral IL-1β administration on the brain and serum BDNF and VEGF expression in rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Obuchowicz, Ewa; Nowacka, Marta; Paul-Samojedny, Monika; Bielecka-Wajdman, Anna M; Małecki, Andrzej

    2017-02-01

    The present study was designed to evaluate, for the first time, the potential sex differences in BDNF and VEGF systems under normal conditions and in response to IL-1β given ip. Peripheral overproduction of this cytokine mediates the pathophysiology of various acute neuroinflammatory states. Until now, the effect of IL-1β on VEGF expression in rat brain structures and its serum level has not been examined. In male and female rats, the BDNF and VEGF mRNA expression, and BDNF level were evaluated in the amygdala, hippocampus, hypothalamus and pituitary gland. The VEGF levels were determined in the pituitary. Serum BDNF and VEGF levels were also measured. The pituitary BDNF mRNA, and BDNF and VEGF levels were higher in females than in male rats whereas in males, the BDNF levels were higher in the other brain structures. The serum BDNF concentration was similar in both groups but VEGF levels were enhanced in females. Following IL-1β (50μg/kg ip.) administration, a higher serum IL-1β level was detected in females than in males. In male rats, IL-1β decreased BDNF mRNA in all the brain structures, except for the pituitary, and VEGF mRNA in the amygdala. In opposite, IL-1β challenge in females increased the pituitary VEGF mRNA and serum BDNF and VEGF levels. These results suggest that in females BDNF and VEGF may play a more important role in the pituitary function. In males, amygdala trophic system seems to be especially sensitive to the enhanced peripheral IL-1β production. Our findings point to the need to consider sex-related differences to be able to draw reliable conclusions about changes in BDNF and VEGF levels during inflammation. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  18. A review on sex differences in processing emotional signals

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kret, M.E.; de Gelder, B.

    2012-01-01

    Interest in sex-related differences in psychological functioning has again come to the foreground with new findings about their possible functional basis in the brain. Sex differences may be one way how evolution has capitalized on the capacity of homologous brain regions to process social

  19. Sex differences in primary hypertension

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-01-01

    Men have higher blood pressure than women through much of life regardless of race and ethnicity. This is a robust and highly conserved sex difference that it is also observed across species including dogs, rats, mice and chickens and it is found in induced, genetic and transgenic animal models of hypertension. Not only do the differences between the ovarian and testicular hormonal milieu contribute to this sexual dimorphism in blood pressure, the sex chromosomes also play a role in and of themselves. This review primarily focuses on epidemiological studies of blood pressure in men and women and experimental models of hypertension in both sexes. Gaps in current knowledge regarding what underlie male-female differences in blood pressure control are discussed. Elucidating the mechanisms underlying sex differences in hypertension may lead to the development of anti-hypertensives tailored to one's sex and ultimately to improved therapeutic strategies for treating this disease and preventing its devastating consequences. PMID:22417477

  20. "Brain sex differentiation" in teleosts: Emerging concepts with potential biomarkers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Senthilkumaran, Balasubramanian; Sudhakumari, Cheni-Chery; Mamta, Sajwan-Khatri; Raghuveer, Kavarthapu; Swapna, Immani; Murugananthkumar, Raju

    2015-09-01

    tyrosine hydroxylase in correlation with catecholamine levels, brain aromatase and its related transcription factors such as fushi tarazu factor 1, Ftz-f1 and fork head box protein L2, foxl2. Taken together, gender differences in the levels of various transcripts provide new perspectives on brain sex differentiation in lower vertebrates. Sexually dimorphic or differentially expressing genes may play an essential role at the level of brain in response to gonadal differentiation, which might consequentially or causatively respond to gonadal sex. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  1. Sex Differences Reappraised: A Rebuttal

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tolor, Alexander; Brannigan, Gary G.

    1975-01-01

    This rebuttal of the criticisms made by Evans and Sperekas points to the fact that sex differences have been found by the authors on locus of control scales, that the purported sex-biased items in the Future Events Test are not necessarily outside the response repetoire of women, and the criticism of including female relevant items cannot be…

  2. Morphometric analysis of the suprachiasmatic and paraventricular nuclei in the human brain: sex differences and age-dependent changes

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hofman, M. A.; Fliers, E.; Goudsmit, E.; Swaab, D. F.

    1988-01-01

    The size, shape and cellular morphology of the suprachiasmatic (SCN) and paraventricular nuclei (PVN) in the human hypothalamus were examined in relation to sex and age. In both nuclear regions the following parameters were determined: length of the rostrocaudal axis, maximum cross sectional area,

  3. Sex Differences in Drug Abuse

    OpenAIRE

    Becker, Jill B.; Hu, Ming

    2007-01-01

    Sex differences are present for all of the phases of drug abuse (initiation, escalation of use, addiction, and relapse following abstinence). While there are some differences among specific classes of abused drugs, the general pattern of sex differences is the same for all drugs of abuse. Females begin regularly self-administering licit and illicit drugs of abuse at lower doses than do males, use escalates more rapidly to addiction, and females are at greater risk for relapse following abstin...

  4. Exploring sex differences in the adult zebra finch brain: In vivo diffusion tensor imaging and ex vivo super-resolution track density imaging.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hamaide, Julie; De Groof, Geert; Van Steenkiste, Gwendolyn; Jeurissen, Ben; Van Audekerke, Johan; Naeyaert, Maarten; Van Ruijssevelt, Lisbeth; Cornil, Charlotte; Sijbers, Jan; Verhoye, Marleen; Van der Linden, Annemie

    2017-02-01

    Zebra finches are an excellent model to study the process of vocal learning, a complex socially-learned tool of communication that forms the basis of spoken human language. So far, structural investigation of the zebra finch brain has been performed ex vivo using invasive methods such as histology. These methods are highly specific, however, they strongly interfere with performing whole-brain analyses and exclude longitudinal studies aimed at establishing causal correlations between neuroplastic events and specific behavioral performances. Therefore, the aim of the current study was to implement an in vivo Diffusion Tensor Imaging (DTI) protocol sensitive enough to detect structural sex differences in the adult zebra finch brain. Voxel-wise comparison of male and female DTI parameter maps shows clear differences in several components of the song control system (i.e. Area X surroundings, the high vocal center (HVC) and the lateral magnocellular nucleus of the anterior nidopallium (LMAN)), which corroborate previous findings and are in line with the clear behavioral difference as only males sing. Furthermore, to obtain additional insights into the 3-dimensional organization of the zebra finch brain and clarify findings obtained by the in vivo study, ex vivo DTI data of the male and female brain were acquired as well, using a recently established super-resolution reconstruction (SRR) imaging strategy. Interestingly, the SRR-DTI approach led to a marked reduction in acquisition time without interfering with the (spatial and angular) resolution and SNR which enabled to acquire a data set characterized by a 78μm isotropic resolution including 90 diffusion gradient directions within 44h of scanning time. Based on the reconstructed SRR-DTI maps, whole brain probabilistic Track Density Imaging (TDI) was performed for the purpose of super resolved track density imaging, further pushing the resolution up to 40μm isotropic. The DTI and TDI maps realized atlas

  5. Sex Differences in the Effects of Acute and Chronic Stress and Recovery after Long-Term Stress on Stress-Related Brain Regions of Rats

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Lin, Yanhua; Ter Horst, Gert J.; Wichmann, Romy; Bakker, Petra; Liu, Aihua; Li, Xuejun; Westenbroek, Christel

    Studies show that sex plays a role in stress-related depression, with women experiencing a higher vulnerability to its effect. Two major targets of antidepressants are brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) and cyclic adenosine monophosphate response element-binding protein (CREB). The aim of this

  6. Can Sex Differences in Science Be Tied to the Long Reach of Prenatal Hormones? Brain Organization Theory, Digit Ratio (2D/4D), and Sex Differences in Preferences and Cognition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Valla, Jeffrey; Ceci, Stephen J

    2011-03-01

    Brain organization theory posits a cascade of physiological and behavioral changes initiated and shaped by prenatal hormones. Recently, this theory has been associated with outcomes including gendered toy preference, 2D/4D digit ratio, personality characteristics, sexual orientation, and cognitive profile (spatial, verbal, and mathematical abilities). We examine the evidence for this claim, focusing on 2D/4D and its putative role as a biomarker for organizational features that influence cognitive abilities/interests predisposing males toward mathematically and spatially intensive careers. Although massive support exists for early brain organization theory overall, there are myriad inconsistencies, alternative explanations, and outright contradictions that must be addressed while still taking the entire theory into account. Like a fractal within the larger theory, the 2D/4D hypothesis mirrors this overall support on a smaller scale while likewise suffering from inconsistencies (positive, negative, and sex-dependent correlations), alternative explanations (2D/4D related to spatial preferences rather than abilities per se), and contradictions (feminine 2D/4D in men associated with higher spatial ability). Using the debate over brain organization theory as the theoretical stage, we focus on 2D/4D evidence as an increasingly important player on this stage, a demonstrative case in point of the evidential complexities of the broader debate, and an increasingly important topic in its own right.

  7. Primate brain architecture and selection in relation to sex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lindenfors, Patrik; Nunn, Charles L; Barton, Robert A

    2007-05-10

    Social and competitive demands often differ between the sexes in mammals. These differing demands should be expected to produce variation in the relative sizes of various brain structures. Sexual selection on males can be predicted to influence brain components handling sensory-motor skills that are important for physical competition or neural pathways involving aggression. Conversely, because female fitness is more closely linked to ecological factors and social interactions that enable better acquisition of resources, social selection on females should select for brain components important for navigating social networks. Sexual and social selection acting on one sex could produce sexual dimorphism in brain structures, which would result in larger species averages for those same brain structures. Alternatively, sex-specific selection pressures could produce correlated effects in the other sex, resulting in larger brain structures for both males and females of a species. Data are presently unavailable for the sex-specific sizes of brain structures for anthropoid primates, but under either scenario, the effects of sexual and social selection should leave a detectable signal in average sizes of brain structures for different species. The degree of male intra-sexual selection was positively correlated with several structures involved in autonomic functions and sensory-motor skills, and in pathways relating to aggression and aggression control. The degree of male intra-sexual selection was not correlated with relative neocortex size, which instead was significantly positively correlated with female social group size, but negatively correlated with male group size. Sexual selection on males and social selection on females have exerted different effects on primate brain architecture. Species with a higher degree of male intra-sexual selection carry a neural signature of an evolutionary history centered on physical conflicts, but no traces of increased demands on

  8. Primate brain architecture and selection in relation to sex

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nunn Charles L

    2007-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Social and competitive demands often differ between the sexes in mammals. These differing demands should be expected to produce variation in the relative sizes of various brain structures. Sexual selection on males can be predicted to influence brain components handling sensory-motor skills that are important for physical competition or neural pathways involving aggression. Conversely, because female fitness is more closely linked to ecological factors and social interactions that enable better acquisition of resources, social selection on females should select for brain components important for navigating social networks. Sexual and social selection acting on one sex could produce sexual dimorphism in brain structures, which would result in larger species averages for those same brain structures. Alternatively, sex-specific selection pressures could produce correlated effects in the other sex, resulting in larger brain structures for both males and females of a species. Data are presently unavailable for the sex-specific sizes of brain structures for anthropoid primates, but under either scenario, the effects of sexual and social selection should leave a detectable signal in average sizes of brain structures for different species. Results The degree of male intra-sexual selection was positively correlated with several structures involved in autonomic functions and sensory-motor skills, and in pathways relating to aggression and aggression control. The degree of male intra-sexual selection was not correlated with relative neocortex size, which instead was significantly positively correlated with female social group size, but negatively correlated with male group size. Conclusion Sexual selection on males and social selection on females have exerted different effects on primate brain architecture. Species with a higher degree of male intra-sexual selection carry a neural signature of an evolutionary history centered on

  9. Why sex hormones matter for neuroscience: A very short review on sex, sex hormones, and functional brain asymmetries.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hausmann, Markus

    2017-01-02

    Biological sex and sex hormones are known to affect functional cerebral asymmetries (FCAs). Men are generally more lateralized than women. The effect size of this sex difference is small but robust. Some of the inconsistencies in the literature may be explained by sex-related hormonal differences. Most studies focusing on neuromodulatory properties of sex hormones on FCAs have investigated women during the menstrual cycle. Although contradictions exist, these studies have typically shown that levels of estradiol and/or progesterone correlate with the degree of FCAs, suggesting that sex differences in FCAs partially depend on hormonal state and day of testing. The results indicate that FCAs are not fixed but are hormone dependent, and as such they can dynamically change within relatively short periods throughout life. Many issues raised in this Mini-Review refer not only to FCAs but also to other aspects of functional brain organization, such as functional connectivity within and between the cerebral hemispheres. Our understanding of sex differences in brain and behavior as well as their clinical relevance will improve significantly if more studies routinely take sex and sex hormones into account. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  10. Sex differences in cough reflex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Plevkova, J; Buday, T; Kavalcikova-Bogdanova, N; Ioan, I; Demoulin-Alexikova, S

    2017-11-01

    Majority of patients visiting cough clinics are postmenopausal women, who are affected by intractable cough for years. Why the cough reflex becomes exaggerated in women is not known. Basic research excludes females from the studies contributing to the sex bias which may be responsible for lack of understanding of "hypersensitive" cough in women. Biological and behavioural differences between women and men are the factors affecting cough physiology. Gender also shapes the patterns of behaviour and determines the character of environmental exposures which differs between sexes. The article offers an insight into the physiology of the cough, differences in the maturation of it and biological, social and behavioural factors contributing to the sex differences in cough. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  11. Pleiotropic Mechanisms Indicated for Sex Differences in Autism.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ileena Mitra

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available Sexual dimorphism in common disease is pervasive, including a dramatic male preponderance in autism spectrum disorders (ASDs. Potential genetic explanations include a liability threshold model requiring increased polymorphism risk in females, sex-limited X-chromosome contribution, gene-environment interaction driven by differences in hormonal milieu, risk influenced by genes sex-differentially expressed in early brain development, or contribution from general mechanisms of sexual dimorphism shared with secondary sex characteristics. Utilizing a large single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP dataset, we identify distinct sex-specific genome-wide significant loci. We investigate genetic hypotheses and find no evidence for increased genetic risk load in females, but evidence for sex heterogeneity on the X chromosome, and contribution of sex-heterogeneous SNPs for anthropometric traits to ASD risk. Thus, our results support pleiotropy between secondary sex characteristic determination and ASDs, providing a biological basis for sex differences in ASDs and implicating non brain-limited mechanisms.

  12. Environmental prenatal stress eliminates brain and maternal behavioral sex differences and alters hormone levels in female rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Del Cerro, M C R; Ortega, E; Gómez, F; Segovia, S; Pérez-Laso, C

    2015-07-01

    Environmental prenatal stress (EPS) has effects on fetuses that are long-lasting, altering their hormone levels, brain morphology and behavior when they reach maturity. In previous research, we demonstrated that EPS affects the expression of induced maternal behavior (MB), the neuroendocrine system, and morphology of the sexually dimorphic accessory olfactory bulb (AOB) involved in reproductive behavior patterns. The bed nucleus of the accessory olfactory tract (BAOT) is another vomeronasal (VN) structure that plays an inhibitory role in rats in the expression of induced maternal behavior in female and male virgins. In the present study, we have ascertained whether the behavioral, neuroendocrine, and neuromorphological alterations of the AOB found after EPS also appear in the BAOT. After applying EPS to pregnant rats during the late gestational period, in their female offspring at maturity we tested induced maternal behavior, BAOT morphology and plasma levels of testosterone (T), estradiol (E2), progesterone (P), adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH) and corticosterone (Cpd B). EPS: a) affected the induction of MB, showed a male-like pattern of care for pups, b) elevated plasma levels of Cpd B and reduced E2 in comparison with the controls, and c) significantly increased the number of BAOT neurons compared to the control females and comparable to the control male group. These findings provide further evidence that stress applied to pregnant rats produces long-lasting behavioral, endocrine and neuroanatomical alterations in the female offspring that are evident when they become mature. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  13. Sex beyond the genitalia: The human brain mosaic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Joel, Daphna; Berman, Zohar; Tavor, Ido; Wexler, Nadav; Gaber, Olga; Stein, Yaniv; Shefi, Nisan; Pool, Jared; Urchs, Sebastian; Margulies, Daniel S.; Liem, Franziskus; Hänggi, Jürgen; Jäncke, Lutz; Assaf, Yaniv

    2015-01-01

    Whereas a categorical difference in the genitals has always been acknowledged, the question of how far these categories extend into human biology is still not resolved. Documented sex/gender differences in the brain are often taken as support of a sexually dimorphic view of human brains (“female brain” or “male brain”). However, such a distinction would be possible only if sex/gender differences in brain features were highly dimorphic (i.e., little overlap between the forms of these features in males and females) and internally consistent (i.e., a brain has only “male” or only “female” features). Here, analysis of MRIs of more than 1,400 human brains from four datasets reveals extensive overlap between the distributions of females and males for all gray matter, white matter, and connections assessed. Moreover, analyses of internal consistency reveal that brains with features that are consistently at one end of the “maleness-femaleness” continuum are rare. Rather, most brains are comprised of unique “mosaics” of features, some more common in females compared with males, some more common in males compared with females, and some common in both females and males. Our findings are robust across sample, age, type of MRI, and method of analysis. These findings are corroborated by a similar analysis of personality traits, attitudes, interests, and behaviors of more than 5,500 individuals, which reveals that internal consistency is extremely rare. Our study demonstrates that, although there are sex/gender differences in the brain, human brains do not belong to one of two distinct categories: male brain/female brain. PMID:26621705

  14. Epigenetics and sex differences in the brain: A genome-wide comparison of histone-3 lysine-4 trimethylation (H3K4me3) in male and female mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shen, Erica Y; Ahern, Todd H; Cheung, Iris; Straubhaar, Juerg; Dincer, Aslihan; Houston, Isaac; de Vries, Geert J; Akbarian, Schahram; Forger, Nancy G

    2015-06-01

    Many neurological and psychiatric disorders exhibit gender disparities, and sex differences in the brain likely explain some of these effects. Recent work in rodents points to a role for epigenetics in the development or maintenance of neural sex differences, although genome-wide studies have so far been lacking. Here we review the existing literature on epigenetics and brain sexual differentiation and present preliminary analyses on the genome-wide distribution of histone-3 lysine-4 trimethylation in a sexually dimorphic brain region in male and female mice. H3K4me3 is a histone mark primarily organized as 'peaks' surrounding the transcription start site of active genes. We microdissected the bed nucleus of the stria terminalis and preoptic area (BNST/POA) in adult male and female mice and used ChIP-Seq to compare the distribution of H3K4me3 throughout the genome. We found 248 genes and loci with a significant sex difference in H3K4me3. Of these, the majority (71%) had larger H3K4me3 peaks in females. Comparisons with existing databases indicate that genes and loci with increased H3K4me3 in females are associated with synaptic function and with expression atlases from related brain areas. Based on RT-PCR, only a minority of genes with a sex difference in H3K4me3 has detectable sex differences in expression at baseline conditions. Together with previous findings, our data suggest that there may be sex biases in the use of epigenetic marks. Such biases could underlie sex differences in vulnerabilities to drugs or diseases that disrupt specific epigenetic processes. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  15. Sex Effects of Marijuana on Brain Structure and Function

    OpenAIRE

    Ketcherside, Ariel; Baine, Jessica; Filbey, Francesca

    2016-01-01

    Background Tetrahydrocannabinol (?9-THC), the primary ingredient in marijuana, exerts its effects across several neurological and biological systems that interact with the endocrine system. Thus, differential effects of ?9-THC are likely to exist based on sex and hormone levels. Methods We reviewed the existing literature to determine sex-based effects of ?9-THC on neural structure and functioning. Results The literature demonstrates differences in male and female marijuana users on brain str...

  16. Sex differences in learning processes of classical and operant conditioning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dalla, Christina; Shors, Tracey J

    2009-05-25

    Males and females learn and remember differently at different times in their lives. These differences occur in most species, from invertebrates to humans. We review here sex differences as they occur in laboratory rodent species. We focus on classical and operant conditioning paradigms, including classical eyeblink conditioning, fear-conditioning, active avoidance and conditioned taste aversion. Sex differences have been reported during acquisition, retention and extinction in most of these paradigms. In general, females perform better than males in the classical eyeblink conditioning, in fear-potentiated startle and in most operant conditioning tasks, such as the active avoidance test. However, in the classical fear-conditioning paradigm, in certain lever-pressing paradigms and in the conditioned taste aversion, males outperform females or are more resistant to extinction. Most sex differences in conditioning are dependent on organizational effects of gonadal hormones during early development of the brain, in addition to modulation by activational effects during puberty and adulthood. Critically, sex differences in performance account for some of the reported effects on learning and these are discussed throughout the review. Because so many mental disorders are more prevalent in one sex than the other, it is important to consider sex differences in learning when applying animal models of learning for these disorders. Finally, we discuss how sex differences in learning continue to alter the brain throughout the lifespan. Thus, sex differences in learning are not only mediated by sex differences in the brain, but also contribute to them.

  17. Sex differences in human epilepsy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Savic, Ivanka

    2014-09-01

    In the majority of neuropsychiatric conditions, marked gender-based differences have been found in the epidemiology, clinical manifestations, and therapy of disease. Emerging data suggest that gender differences exist also in the epidemiology, and pathophysiology of epilepsy. The present review summarizes the current information regarding gender and epilepsy. These differences are regarded from the perspective of innate sex differences in cerebral morphology, structural and functional connections, and assuming that these differences may render men and women differently vulnerable to epileptogenicity. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  18. Sex differences in angiotensin II- induced hypertension

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    B. Xue

    2007-05-01

    Full Text Available Sex differences in the development of hypertension and cardiovascular disease have been described in humans and in animal models. In this paper we will review some of our studies which have as their emphasis the examination of the role of sex differences and sex steroids in modulating the central actions of angiotensin II (ANG II via interactions with free radicals and nitric oxide, generating pathways within brain circumventricular organs and in central sympathomodulatory systems. Our studies indicate that low-dose infusions of ANG II result in hypertension in wild-type male mice but not in intact wild-type females. Furthermore, we have demonstrated that ANG II-induced hypertension in males is blocked by central infusions of the androgen receptor antagonist, flutamide, and by central infusions of the superoxide dismutase mimetic, tempol. We have also found that, in comparison to females, males show greater levels of intracellular reactive oxygen species in circumventricular organ neurons following long-term ANG II infusions. In female mice, ovariectomy, central blockade of estrogen receptors or total knockout of estrogen a receptors augments the pressor effects of ANG II. Finally, in females but not in males, central blockade of nitric oxide synthase increases the pressor effects of ANG II. Taken together, these results suggest that sex differences and estrogen and testosterone play important roles in the development of ANG II-induced hypertension.

  19. [Sex differentiation of central nervous system--brain of man and woman].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arai, Yasumasa

    2004-02-01

    Sex differentiation of human brain is mostly dependent on the prenatal exposure to androgen(testosterone). Congenital aromatase deficiency does not disturb male brain development in men. This is quite different from experimental evidence from rodents whose brains need intraneuronal aromatization from androgen to estrogen to induce sex differentiation. There is evidence for male-female differences in brain structures. Some of them(INHA-3) appear to be related with sexual orientation. The other(BNST) might participate in forming gender-identity. In addition, sexually dimorphic features are recognized in some cognitive activities. The possible involvement of genetic factors in human brain sex differentiation is also discussed.

  20. [Sex differences and anesthesiology: preface and comments].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nishno, Takashi

    2009-01-01

    In this special issue, the topic of sex difference in the field of anesthesiology is featured. Eight subtopics are discussed including 1) sex differences in cardiovascular medicine, 2) perioperative cardiovascular management, 3) sex differences in the respiratory functions of the upper airway, 4) sex differences in the anesthetic management, 5) sex differences in pain, 6) sex differences in laboratory medicine, 7) sex differences in pharmacokinetics of anesthetics, and 8) postoperative nausea and vomiting. Although recent clinical and experimental studies have shown the existence of sex and/or gender differences in many fields of medicine, our knowledge of sex differences in anesthesiology is apparently insufficient. I believe that anesthesiologists should pay more attention to this topic to improve our daily practice of anesthesia.

  1. Sex selection: treating different cases differently.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dickens, B M; Serour, G I; Cook, R J; Qiu, R-Z

    2005-08-01

    This paper contrasts ethical approaches to sex selection in countries where discrimination against women is pervasive, resulting in selection against girl children, and in countries where there is less general discrimination and couples do not prefer children of either sex. National sex ratio imbalances where discrimination against women is common have resulted in laws and policies, such as in India and China, to deter and prevent sex selection. Birth ratios of children can be affected by techniques of prenatal sex determination and abortion, preconception sex selection and discarding disfavored embryos, and prefertilization sperm sorting, when disfavored sperm remain unused. Incentives for son preference are reviewed, and laws and policies to prevent sex selection are explained. The elimination of social, economic and other discrimination against women is urged to redress sex selection against girl children. Where there is no general selection against girl children, sex selection can be allowed to assist families that want children of both sexes.

  2. Sex and Gender Differences in Central Nervous System-Related Disorders

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Emanuela Zagni

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available There are important sex differences in the brain that seem to arise from biology as well as psychosocial influences. Sex differences in several aspects of human behavior and cognition have been reported. Gonadal sex steroids or genes found on sex chromosomes influence sex differences in neuroanatomy, neurochemistry and neuronal structure, and connectivity. There has been some resistance to accept that sex differences in the human brain exist and have biological relevance; however, a few years ago, it has been recommended by the USA National Institute of Mental Health to incorporate sex as a variable in experimental and clinical neurological and psychiatric studies. We here review the clinical literature on sex differences in pain and neurological and psychiatric diseases, with the aim to further stimulate interest in sexual dimorphisms in the brain and brain diseases, possibly encouraging more research in the field of the implications of sex differences for treating these conditions.

  3. Why we should consider sex (and study sex differences) in addiction research.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sanchis-Segura, Carla; Becker, Jill B

    2016-09-01

    Among mammals, every cell has a biological sex, and the sex of an individual pervades its body and brain. In this review, we describe the processes through which mammals become phenotypically male or female by organizational and activational influences of genes and hormones throughout development. We emphasized that the molecular and cellular changes triggered by sex chromosomes and steroid hormones may generate sex differences in overt physiological functions and behavior, but they may alternatively promote end-point convergences between males and females. Clinical and pre-clinical evidences suggest that sex and gender differences modulate drug consumption as well as of the transition towards drug-promoted pathological states such as dependence and addiction. Additionally, sex differences in drug pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics will also influence dependence and addiction as well as side effects of drugs. These effects will further interact with socially gendered factors to result in sex differences in the access to, engagement in and efficacy of any therapeutic attempt. Finally, we maintain that 'sex sameness' is as important as 'sex differences' when building a complete understanding of biology for both males and females and provide a framework with which to classify and guide investigation into the mechanisms mediating sex differences and sex sameness. © 2016 Society for the Study of Addiction.

  4. Sex Differences in Tibiocalcaneal Kinematics

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sinclair Jonathan

    2014-08-01

    Full Text Available Purpose. Female runners typically suffer more from chronic running injuries than age-matched males, although the exact biome-chanical mechanisms behind the increased susceptibility of female runners are unknown. This study aimed to compare sex differences in tibiocalcaneal kinematics during the stance phase of running. Methods. Twenty male and twenty female participants ran at 4.0 m · s–1. Tibiocalcaneal kinematics were measured using an eight-camera motion analysis system and compared using independent samples t tests. Results. Peak eversion and tibial internal rotation angles were shown to be significantly greater in female runners. Conclusions. based on these observations, it was determined that female runners may be at increased risk from chronic injury development in relation to excessive tibiocalcaneal motions in the coronal and transverse planes.

  5. Sex differences in adolescent depression: do sex hormones determine vulnerability?

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Naninck, E.F.G.; Lucassen, P.J.; Bakker, J.

    2011-01-01

    Depression is one of the most common, costly and severe psychopathologies worldwide. Its incidence, however, differs significantly between the sexes, and depression rates in women are twice those of men. Interestingly, this sex difference emerges during adolescence. Although the adolescent period is

  6. The sex difference of plasma homovanillic acid is unaffected by cross-sex hormone administration in transsexual subjects.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Giltay, E.J.; Kho, K.H.; Blansjaar, B.A.; Verbeek, M.M.; Geurtz, P.B.; Geleijnse, J.M.; Gooren, L.J.G.

    2005-01-01

    There is a close relationship between the brain and the endocrine system. The brain expresses receptors for sex steroids and is capable of metabolizing these hormones. We explored (1) sex differences in homovanillic acid (HVA), a metabolite of the neurotransmitter dopamine, and (2) the effects of

  7. The sex difference of plasma homovanillic acid is unaffected by cross-sex hormone administration in transsexual subjects

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Giltay, E.J.; Kho, King H.; Blansjaar, B.A.; Verbeek, M.M.; Geurtz, P.B.H.; Geleijnse, J.M.

    2005-01-01

    There is a close relationship between the brain and the endocrine system. The brain expresses receptors for sex steroids and is capable of metabolizing these hormones. We explored (1) sex differences in homovanillic acid (HVA), a metabolite of the neurotransmitter dopamine, and (2) the effects of

  8. Do sex differences in rumination explain sex differences in depression?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shors, Tracey J; Millon, Emma M; Chang, Han Yan M; Olson, Ryan L; Alderman, Brandon L

    2017-01-02

    It is generally accepted that women tend to ruminate more than men do and these thought patterns are often associated with depressive symptoms (Nolen-Hoeksema et al., ). Based on these findings, we considered whether the relationship between rumination and depression is stronger in women than in men and if so, whether this might explain the higher prevalence of major depressive disorder (MDD) in women and finally, whether the association can be disrupted through a mind/body intervention. Adult men and women, most of whom were clinically depressed, participated in an intervention known as MAP Training, which combines "mental" training with silent meditation and "physical" training with aerobic exercise (Shors et al., ). After eight weeks of training, both men and women reported significantly fewer symptoms of depression and fewer ruminative thoughts (Alderman et al., ). Statistical correlations between depressive symptoms and ruminative thoughts were strong and significant (rho > 0.50; p depressive symptoms relate to "reflective" ruminations, which involve analyses of past events, feelings, and behaviors. This is also the only relationship that dissipated after the intervention. In general, these analyses suggest that the strength of the relationship between depressive symptoms and rumination does not necessarily explain sex differences in depression; but because the relationship is strong, targeting rumination through intervention can reduce the incidence of MDD, which is more prevalent among women. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  9. Sex Differences in the Anticonvulsant Activity of Neurosteroids

    OpenAIRE

    Samba Reddy, Doodipala

    2017-01-01

    Epilepsy is one of the leading causes of chronic neurological morbidity worldwide. Acquired epilepsy may result from a number of conditions such brain injury, anoxia, tumors, stroke, neurotoxicity, and prolonged seizures. Sex differences have been observed in many seizures types; however there are sex-specific seizure disorders that are much more prevalent in women. Despite some inconsistencies, there is a substantial amount of data which indicates that sensitivity to seizure stimuli differs ...

  10. Sex differences in intracranial arterial bifurcations

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lindekleiv, Haakon M; Valen-Sendstad, Kristian; Morgan, Michael K

    2010-01-01

    . The female preponderance is usually explained by systemic factors (hormonal influences and intrinsic wall weakness); however, the uneven sex distribution of intracranial aneurysms suggests a possible physiologic factor-a local sex difference in the intracranial arteries....

  11. Neurogenin 3 Mediates Sex Chromosome Effects on the Generation of Sex Differences in Hypothalamic Neuronal Development

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maria Julia Scerbo

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available The organizational action of testosterone during critical periods of development is the cause of numerous sex differences in the brain. However, sex differences in neuritogenesis have been detected in primary neuronal hypothalamic cultures prepared before the peak of testosterone production by fetal testis. In the present study we assessed the hypothesis of that cell-autonomous action of sex chromosomes can differentially regulate the expression of the neuritogenic gene neurogenin 3 (Ngn3 in male and female hypothalamic neurons, generating sex differences in neuronal development. Neuronal cultures were prepared from male and female E14 mouse hypothalami, before the fetal peak of testosterone. Female neurons showed enhanced neuritogenesis and higher expression of Ngn3 than male neurons. The silencing of Ngn3 abolished sex differences in neuritogenesis, decreasing the differentiation of female neurons. The sex difference in Ngn3 expression was determined by sex chromosomes, as demonstrated using the four core genotypes mouse model, in which a spontaneous deletion of the testis-determining gene Sry from the Y chromosome was combined with the insertion of the Sry gene onto an autosome. In addition, the expression of Ngn3, which is also known to mediate the neuritogenic actions of estradiol, was increased in the cultures treated with the hormone, but only in those from male embryos. Furthermore, the hormone reversed the sex differences in neuritogenesis promoting the differentiation of male neurons. These findings indicate that Ngn3 mediates both cell-autonomous actions of sex chromosomes and hormonal effects on neuritogenesis.

  12. Sex differences in cardiovascular function

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Kolář, František; Ošťádal, Bohuslav

    2013-01-01

    Roč. 207, č. 4 (2013), s. 584-587 ISSN 1748-1708 Institutional support: RVO:67985823 Keywords : heart * vascular * risk factors * sex Subject RIV: FA - Cardiovascular Diseases incl. Cardiotharic Surgery Impact factor: 4.251, year: 2013

  13. Human subcortical brain asymmetries in 15,847 people worldwide reveal effects of age and sex

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Guadalupe, Tulio; Mathias, Samuel R.; vanErp, Theo G.M.; Whelan, Christopher D.; Zwiers, Marcel P.; Abe, Yoshinari; Abramovic, Lucija; Agartz, Ingrid; Andreassen, Ole A.; Arias-Vásquez, Alejandro; Aribisala, Benjamin S.; Armstrong, Nicola J.; Arolt, Volker; Artiges, Eric; Ayesa-Arriola, Rosa; Baboyan, Vatche G.; Banaschewski, Tobias; Barker, Gareth; Bastin, Mark E.; Baune, Bernhard T.; Blangero, John; Bokde, Arun L.W.; Boedhoe, Premika S.W.; Bose, Anushree; Brem, Silvia; Brodaty, Henry; Bromberg, Uli; Brooks, Samantha; Büchel, Christian; Buitelaar, Jan; Calhoun, Vince D.; Cannon, Dara M.; Cattrell, Anna; Cheng, Yuqi; Conrod, Patricia J.; Conzelmann, Annette; Corvin, Aiden; Crespo-Facorro, Benedicto; Crivello, Fabrice; Dannlowski, Udo; de Zubicaray, Greig I.; de Zwarte, Sonja M.C.; Deary, Ian J.; Desrivières, Sylvane; Doan, Nhat Trung; Donohoe, Gary; Dørum, Erlend S.; Ehrlich, Stefan; Espeseth, Thomas; Fernández, Guillén; Flor, Herta; Fouche, Jean Paul; Frouin, Vincent; Fukunaga, Masaki; Gallinat, Jürgen; Garavan, Hugh; Gill, Michael; Suarez, Andrea Gonzalez; Gowland, Penny; Grabe, Hans J.; Grotegerd, Dominik; Gruber, Oliver; Hagenaars, Saskia; Hashimoto, Ryota; Hauser, Tobias U.; Heinz, Andreas; Hibar, Derrek P.; Hoekstra, Pieter J.; Hoogman, Martine; Howells, Fleur M.; Hu, Hao; Hulshoff Pol, Hilleke E.; Huyser, Chaim; Ittermann, Bernd; Jahanshad, Neda; Jönsson, Erik G.; Jurk, Sarah; Kahn, Rene S.; Kelly, Sinead; Kraemer, Bernd; Kugel, Harald; Kwon, Jun Soo; Lemaitre, Herve; Lesch, Klaus Peter; Lochner, Christine; Luciano, Michelle; Marquand, Andre F.; Martin, Nicholas G.; Martínez-Zalacaín, Ignacio; Martinot, Jean Luc; Mataix-Cols, David; Mather, Karen; McDonald, Colm; McMahon, Katie L.; Medland, Sarah E.; Menchón, José M.; Morris, Derek W.; Mothersill, Omar; Maniega, Susana Munoz; Mwangi, Benson; Nakamae, Takashi; Nakao, Tomohiro; Narayanaswaamy, Janardhanan C.; Nees, Frauke; Nordvik, Jan E.; Onnink, A. Marten H.; Opel, Nils; Ophoff, Roel; Paillère Martinot, Marie Laure; Papadopoulos Orfanos, Dimitri; Pauli, Paul; Paus, Tomáš; Poustka, Luise; Reddy, Janardhan Yc; Renteria, Miguel E.; Roiz-Santiáñez, Roberto; Roos, Annerine; Royle, Natalie A.; Sachdev, Perminder; Sánchez-Juan, Pascual; Schmaal, Lianne; Schumann, Gunter; Shumskaya, Elena; Smolka, Michael N.; Soares, Jair C.; Soriano-Mas, Carles; Stein, Dan J.; Strike, Lachlan T.; Toro, Roberto; Turner, Jessica A.; Tzourio-Mazoyer, Nathalie; Uhlmann, Anne; Hernández, Maria Valdés; van den Heuvel, Odile A.; van der Meer, Dennis; van Haren, Neeltje E.M.; Veltman, Dick J.; Venkatasubramanian, Ganesan; Vetter, Nora C.; Vuletic, Daniella; Walitza, Susanne; Walter, Henrik; Walton, Esther; Wang, Zhen; Wardlaw, Joanna; Wen, Wei; Westlye, Lars T.; Whelan, Robert; Wittfeld, Katharina; Wolfers, Thomas; Wright, Margaret J.; Xu, Jian; Xu, Xiufeng; Yun, Je Yeon; Zhao, Jing Jing; Franke, Barbara; Thompson, Paul M.; Glahn, David C.; Mazoyer, Bernard; Fisher, Simon E.; Francks, Clyde

    2017-01-01

    The two hemispheres of the human brain differ functionally and structurally. Despite over a century of research, the extent to which brain asymmetry is influenced by sex, handedness, age, and genetic factors is still controversial. Here we present the largest ever analysis of subcortical brain

  14. Sex differences in heritability of BMI

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Schousboe, Karoline; Willemsen, Gonneke; Kyvik, Kirsten O

    2003-01-01

    pairs (including opposite sex pairs) aged 20-29 and 30-39 from eight different twin registries participating in the GenomEUtwin project. Quantitative genetic analyses were conducted and sex differences were explored. Variation in BMI was greater for women than for men, and in both sexes was primarily...... explained by additive genetic variance in all countries. Sex differences in the variance components were consistently significant. Results from analyses of opposite sex pairs also showed evidence of sex-specific genetic effects suggesting there may be some differences between men and women in the genetic...... factors that influence variation in BMI. These results encourage the continued search for genes of importance to the body composition and the development of obesity. Furthermore, they suggest that strategies to identify predisposing genes may benefit from taking into account potential sex specific effects....

  15. Sex Differences in Human and Animal Toxicology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gochfeld, Michael

    2017-01-01

    Sex, the states of being female or male, potentially interacts with all xenobiotic exposures, both inadvertent and deliberate, and influences their toxicokinetics (TK), toxicodynamics, and outcomes. Sex differences occur in behavior, exposure, anatomy, physiology, biochemistry, and genetics, accounting for female-male differences in responses to environmental chemicals, diet, and pharmaceuticals, including adverse drug reactions (ADRs). Often viewed as an annoying confounder, researchers have studied only one sex, adjusted for sex, or ignored it. Occupational epidemiology, the basis for understanding many toxic effects in humans, usually excluded women. Likewise, Food and Drug Administration rules excluded women of childbearing age from drug studies for many years. Aside from sex-specific organs, sex differences and sex × age interactions occur for a wide range of disease states as well as hormone-influenced conditions and drug distribution. Women have more ADRs than men; the classic sex hormone paradigm (gonadectomy and replacement) reveals significant interaction of sex and TK including absorption, distribution, metabolisms, and elimination. Studies should be designed to detect sex differences, describe the mechanisms, and interpret these in a broad social, clinical, and evolutionary context with phenomena that do not differ. Sex matters, but how much of a difference is needed to matter remains challenging.

  16. Sex Ideologies in China: Examining Interprovince Differences.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hu, Yang

    2016-01-01

    In recent decades, premarital sex, extramarital sex, and homosexuality have become increasingly visible in China, leading scholars to claim that a national "sex revolution" is under way. However, China's internal sociocultural diversity calls this nation-level generalization into question. How do sex ideologies vary across China's distinct provinces? To what extent are interprovince variations in sex ideologies associated with distinct macrolevel social factors in China? In this research, data from the 2010 China General Social Survey and the 2011 Chinese Statistics Yearbook were analyzed using multilevel models to test four contending theories of interprovince differences in sex ideologies in China: modernization, Westernization, deindustrialization, and the "rice theory." The modernization theory was unsupported by the results, as socioeconomic development is not significantly associated with sex ideologies. Higher levels of deindustrialization and Westernization were associated with less traditional sex ideologies, but the strength of association varied across the domains of premarital sex, extramarital sex, and homosexuality. The rice theory was consistently supported, as the distinction between rice and wheat agriculture explained up to 30% of the province-level variance in sex ideologies. The findings underline the roles of both long-standing geographic differences and recent social changes in shaping China's ideational landscape of sex.

  17. Sex-related variation in human behavior and the brain

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hines, Melissa

    2010-01-01

    Male and female fetuses differ in testosterone concentrations beginning as early as week 8 of gestation. This early hormone difference exerts permanent influences on brain development and behavior. Contemporary research shows that hormones are particularly important for the development of sex-typical childhood behavior, including toy choices, which until recently were thought to result solely from sociocultural influences. Prenatal testosterone exposure also appears to influence sexual orientation and gender identity, as well as some, but not all, sex-related cognitive, motor and personality characteristics. Neural mechanisms responsible for these hormone-induced behavioral outcomes are beginning to be identified, and current evidence suggests involvement of the hypothalamus and amygdala, as well as interhemispheric connectivity, and cortical areas involved in visual processing. PMID:20724210

  18. Sex differences in depression during pregnancy and the postpartum period.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sundström Poromaa, Inger; Comasco, Erika; Georgakis, Marios K; Skalkidou, Alkistis

    2017-01-02

    Women have a lifetime risk of major depression double that of men but only during their reproductive years. This sex difference has been attributed partially to activational effects of female sex steroids and also to the burdens of pregnancy, childbirth, and parenting. Men, in contrast, have a reproductive period difficult to delineate, and research on the mental health of men has rarely considered the effects of fatherhood. However, the couple goes through a number of potentially stressing events during the reproductive period, and both mothers and fathers are at risk of developing peripartum depression. This Review discusses the literature on maternal and paternal depression and the endocrine changes that may predispose a person to depression at this stage of life, with specific focus on the hypothalamus-pituitary axis, oxytocin, and testosterone levels in men. Important findings on sex differences in the neural correlates of maternal and paternal behavior have emerged, highlighting the relevance of the emotional brain in mothers and the sociocognitive brain in fathers and pointing toward the presence of a common parents' brain. Additionally, sex differences in neurogenesis and brain plasticity are described in relation to peripartum depression. © 2016 The Authors. Journal of Neuroscience Research Published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc. © 2016 The Authors. Journal of Neuroscience Research Published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  19. Molecular sex differences in human serum.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jordan M Ramsey

    Full Text Available Sex is an important factor in the prevalence, incidence, progression, and response to treatment of many medical conditions, including autoimmune and cardiovascular diseases and psychiatric conditions. Identification of molecular differences between typical males and females can provide a valuable basis for exploring conditions differentially affected by sex.Using multiplexed immunoassays, we analyzed 174 serum molecules in 9 independent cohorts of typical individuals, comprising 196 males and 196 females. Sex differences in analyte levels were quantified using a meta-analysis approach and put into biological context using k-means to generate clusters of analytes with distinct biological functions. Natural sex differences were established in these analyte groups and these were applied to illustrate sexually dimorphic analyte expression in a cohort of 22 males and 22 females with Asperger syndrome. Reproducible sex differences were found in the levels of 77 analytes in serum of typical controls, and these comprised clusters of molecules enriched with distinct biological functions. Analytes involved in fatty acid oxidation/hormone regulation, immune cell growth and activation, and cell death were found at higher levels in females, and analytes involved in immune cell chemotaxis and other indistinct functions were higher in males. Comparison of these naturally occurring sex differences against a cohort of people with Asperger syndrome indicated that a cluster of analytes that had functions related to fatty acid oxidation/hormone regulation was associated with sex and the occurrence of this condition.Sex-specific molecular differences were detected in serum of typical controls and these were reproducible across independent cohorts. This study extends current knowledge of sex differences in biological functions involved in metabolism and immune function. Deviations from typical sex differences were found in a cluster of molecules in Asperger syndrome

  20. Is sex an indicator of prognosis after mild traumatic brain injury

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Cancelliere, Carol; Donovan, James; David Cassidy, J.

    2016-01-01

    . Most studies did not find a sex difference for postconcussion symptoms in children and adults. No sex difference was found for risk of dementia and primary brain tumor, return to work, or posttraumatic stress syndrome. Conclusions Sex is not a well-studied prognostic indicator for recovery after MTBI......Objective to determine sex differences in the recovery and prognosis after mild traumatic brain injury (MTBI) in adults and children. Data Sources We analyzed all scientifically admissible primary studies in the World Health Organization (WHO) (n=120) and International Collaboration on Mild...... Traumatic Brain Injury Prognosis (ICoMP) (n=101) systematic reviews regarding prognosis of MTBI for sex-stratified findings. They searched MEDLINE and other databases from 1980 through 2000 (WHO) and 2001 through 2012 (ICoMP) for published, peer-reviewed reports in English and other languages. Study...

  1. Sex differences in heritability of neck Pain

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Fejer, René; Hartvigsen, Jan; Kyvik, Kirsten Ohm

    2006-01-01

    Experimental studies have suggested biological factors as a possible explanation for gender disparities in perception of pain. Recently, heritability of liability to neck pain (NP) has been found to be statistically significantly larger in women compared to men. However, no studies have been...... conducted to determine whether the sex differences in heritability of NP are due to sex-specific genetic factors. Data on lifetime prevalence of NP from a population-based cross-sectional survey of 33,794 Danish twins were collected and age-stratified univariate biometrical modeling using sex......-limitation models was performed based on 10,605 dizygotic (DZ) twins of opposite sex to estimate the qualitative sex differences. In a full sex-limitation model the genetic component in females were higher than in males, but the genetic and the shared environmental correlations were equal to what is normally...

  2. Social preference and maternal defeat-induced social avoidance in virgin female rats: sex differences in involvement of brain oxytocin and vasopressin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lukas, Michael; Neumann, Inga D

    2014-08-30

    Research concerning non-reproductive sociability in rodents is mainly restricted to assessing the effects of oxytocin (OXT) and arginine-vasopressin (AVP) in male rats and mice. Comparable studies on natural social preference and social avoidance in females are substantially lacking. Here, we adapted a behavioral paradigm for monitoring social preference of female rats consisting of two consecutive exposures to either non-social or social stimuli. Further, to induce stimulus-specific social avoidance, female rats were exposed to a single 10-min maternal defeat by a lactating dam. Social preference towards same-sex conspecifics in female rats was shown to be independent of the estrous cycle and even more pronounced than in male rats. Intracerebroventricular (icv) application of OXT, AVP, or their selective receptor antagonists or agonists, did not alter naturally-occurring social preference in female rats. Stimulus-specific social avoidance could be induced by prior exposure to a lactating rat: an effect that could not be reversed/overcome by icv OXT. The female social preference paradigm for rats established in this study detected subtle sex differences in social preference behavior of rats. Further, stimulus-specific social deficits could be induced in female rats using an acute exposure to social defeat - as previously observed in male rodents. Female rats show strong social preference behavior, which can be prevented by social defeat, but does not seem to be regulated by the OXT or AVP systems. Accordingly, icv application of synthetic OXT does not reverse maternal defeat-induced social avoidance in female rats. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  3. Sex differences in genetic architecture of complex phenotypes?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jacqueline M Vink

    Full Text Available We examined sex differences in familial resemblance for a broad range of behavioral, psychiatric and health related phenotypes (122 complex traits in children and adults. There is a renewed interest in the importance of genotype by sex interaction in, for example, genome-wide association (GWA studies of complex phenotypes. If different genes play a role across sex, GWA studies should consider the effect of genetic variants separately in men and women, which affects statistical power. Twin and family studies offer an opportunity to compare resemblance between opposite-sex family members to the resemblance between same-sex relatives, thereby presenting a test of quantitative and qualitative sex differences in the genetic architecture of complex traits. We analyzed data on lifestyle, personality, psychiatric disorder, health, growth, development and metabolic traits in dizygotic (DZ same-sex and opposite-sex twins, as these siblings are perfectly matched for age and prenatal exposures. Sample size varied from slightly over 300 subjects for measures of brain function such as EEG power to over 30,000 subjects for childhood psychopathology and birth weight. For most phenotypes, sample sizes were large, with an average sample size of 9027 individuals. By testing whether the resemblance in DZ opposite-sex pairs is the same as in DZ same-sex pairs, we obtain evidence for genetic qualitative sex-differences in the genetic architecture of complex traits for 4% of phenotypes. We conclude that for most traits that were examined, the current evidence is that same the genes are operating in men and women.

  4. Do Sex Differences Define Gender-Related Individual Differences within the Sexes? Evidence from Three Studies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lippa, Richard

    1995-01-01

    Studied three different criteria of within-sex, gender-related individual differences taken from three studies. Data showed that items displaying large sex differences tended also to correlate most strongly with independent gender-related criteria within the sexes. Discusses assessment implications for gender-related and other group-related…

  5. How important are sex differences in cannabinoid action?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fattore, Liana; Fratta, Walter

    2010-06-01

    In humans as in animals, males and females are dissimilar in their genetic and hormonally driven behaviour; they process information differently, perceive experience and emotions in different ways, display diverse attitudes, language and social skills, and show sex-related differences in the brain anatomy and organization. Drug addiction is a widespread relapsing illness that affects both men and women. Sex-dependent differences have been frequently observed in the biological and behavioural effects of substances of abuse, including cannabis. Beside sex differences observed in the cannabinoid-induced effects related to cannabis abuse and dependence, cannabinoids have been shown to exert sex-dependent effects also in other physiological and behavioural aspects, such as food intake and energy balance (more evident in males), or anxiety and depression (more evident in females). Research has just begun to identify factors which could provide a neurobiological basis for gender-based differences in cannabinoid effects, among which, gonadal hormones seem to play a crucial role. Yet, cannabinoid pharmacodynamic and pharmacokinetic may also be important, as sex differences in cannabinoid effects might be due, at least in part, to differences in muscle mass and fat tissue distribution between males and females. Here, we will review both clinical and laboratory-based research evidence revealing important sex-related differences in cannabinoid effects, and put forward some suggestions for future studies to fill the gap in our knowledge of gender-specific bias in cannabinoid pharmacology.

  6. The Science of Sex Differences in Science and Mathematics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Halpern, Diane F.; Benbow, Camilla P.; Geary, David C.; Gur, Ruben C.; Hyde, Janet Shibley; Gernsbacher, Morton Ann

    2014-01-01

    Summary Amid ongoing public speculation about the reasons for sex differences in careers in science and mathematics, we present a consensus statement that is based on the best available scientific evidence. Sex differences in science and math achievement and ability are smaller for the mid-range of the abilities distribution than they are for those with the highest levels of achievement and ability. Males are more variable on most measures of quantitative and visuospatial ability, which necessarily results in more males at both high- and low-ability extremes; the reasons why males are often more variable remain elusive. Successful careers in math and science require many types of cognitive abilities. Females tend to excel in verbal abilities, with large differences between females and males found when assessments include writing samples. High-level achievement in science and math requires the ability to communicate effectively and comprehend abstract ideas, so the female advantage in writing should be helpful in all academic domains. Males outperform females on most measures of visuospatial abilities, which have been implicated as contributing to sex differences on standardized exams in mathematics and science. An evolutionary account of sex differences in mathematics and science supports the conclusion that, although sex differences in math and science performance have not directly evolved, they could be indirectly related to differences in interests and specific brain and cognitive systems. We review the brain basis for sex differences in science and mathematics, describe consistent effects, and identify numerous possible correlates. Experience alters brain structures and functioning, so causal statements about brain differences and success in math and science are circular. A wide range of sociocultural forces contribute to sex differences in mathematics and science achievement and ability—including the effects of family, neighborhood, peer, and school

  7. Sex differences in neural activation following different routes of oxytocin administration in awake adult rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dumais, Kelly M; Kulkarni, Praveen P; Ferris, Craig F; Veenema, Alexa H

    2017-07-01

    The neuropeptide oxytocin (OT) regulates social behavior in sex-specific ways across species. OT has promising effects on alleviating social deficits in sex-biased neuropsychiatric disorders. However little is known about potential sexually dimorphic effects of OT on brain function. Using the rat as a model organism, we determined whether OT administered centrally or peripherally induces sex differences in brain activation. Functional magnetic resonance imaging was used to examine blood oxygen level-dependent (BOLD) signal intensity changes in the brains of awake rats during the 20min following intracerebroventricular (ICV; 1μg/5μl) or intraperitoneal (IP; 0.1mg/kg) OT administration as compared to baseline. ICV OT induced sex differences in BOLD activation in 26 out of 172 brain regions analyzed, with 20 regions showing a greater volume of activation in males (most notably the nucleus accumbens and insular cortex), and 6 regions showing a greater volume of activation in females (including the lateral and central amygdala). IP OT also elicited sex differences in BOLD activation with a greater volume of activation in males, but this activation was found in different and fewer (10) brain regions compared to ICV OT. In conclusion, exogenous OT modulates neural activation differently in male versus female rats with the pattern and magnitude, but not the direction, of sex differences depending on the route of administration. These findings highlight the need to include both sexes in basic and clinical studies to fully understand the role of OT on brain function. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  8. Sex Differences in Cardiovascular Drug Response

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    E.M. Rodenburg (Eline)

    2012-01-01

    textabstractIn the early sixties, a prominent professor in Clinical Pharmacology at the University College in London, D.R. Laurence, stated: “There are no clinically important sex differences in drug action, except, of course, to sex steroid hormones, but the subject is poorly documented. Women

  9. Sex Differences and Depression in Puerto Rico.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Canino, Glorisa J.; And Others

    1987-01-01

    Examined sex differences in rates of depressive disorders and depressive symptomatology, as measured by the Diagnostic Interview Schedule, for an island-wide probability sample of Puerto Rico. Found depression significantly more prevalent among women than men. Discusses risk factors from a sex-role and cultural perspective. (Author/KS)

  10. Sex differences in stress-induced social withdrawal: role of brain derived neurotrophic factor in the bed nucleus of the stria terminalis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Greenberg, Gian D; Laman-Maharg, Abigail; Campi, Katharine L; Voigt, Heather; Orr, Veronica N; Schaal, Leslie; Trainor, Brian C

    2013-01-01

    Depression and anxiety disorders are more common in women than men, and little is known about the neurobiological mechanisms that contribute to this disparity. Recent data suggest that stress-induced changes in neurotrophins have opposing effects on behavior by acting in different brain networks. Social defeat has been an important approach for understanding neurotrophin action, but low female aggression levels in rats and mice have limited the application of these methods primarily to males. We examined the effects of social defeat in monogamous California mice (Peromyscus californicus), a species in which both males and females defend territories. We demonstrate that defeat stress increases mature brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) protein but not mRNA in the bed nucleus of the stria terminalis (BNST) in females but not males. Changes in BDNF protein were limited to anterior subregions of the BNST, and there were no changes in the adjacent nucleus accumbens (NAc). The effects of defeat on social withdrawal behavior and BDNF were reversed by chronic, low doses of the antidepressant sertraline. However, higher doses of sertraline restored social withdrawal and elevated BDNF levels. Acute treatment with a low dose of sertraline failed to reverse the effects of defeat. Infusions of the selective tyrosine-related kinase B receptor (TrkB) antagonist ANA-12 into the anterior BNST specifically increased social interaction in stressed females but had no effect on behavior in females naïve to defeat. These results suggest that stress-induced increases in BDNF in the anterior BNST contribute to the exaggerated social withdrawal phenotype observed in females.

  11. Title: Sex differences in stress-induced social withdrawal: role of brain derived neurotrophic factor in the bed nucleus of the stria terminalis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gian David Greenberg

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Depression and anxiety disorders are more common in women than men, and little is known about the neurobiological mechanisms that contribute to this disparity. Recent data suggest that stress-induced changes in neurotrophins have opposing effects on behavior by acting in different brain networks. Social defeat has been an important approach for understanding neurotrophin action, but low female aggression levels in rats and mice have limited the application of these methods primarily to males. We examined the effects of social defeat in monogamous California mice (Peromyscus californicus, a species in which both males and females defend territories. We demonstrate that defeat stress increases mature brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF protein but not mRNA in the bed nucleus of the stria terminalis (BNST in females but not males. Changes in BDNF protein were limited to anterior subregions of the BNST, and there were no changes in the adjacent nucleus accumbens (NAc. The effects of defeat on social withdrawal behavior and BDNF were reversed by chronic, low doses of the antidepressant sertraline. However, higher doses of sertraline restored social withdrawal and elevated BDNF levels. Acute treatment with a low dose of sertraline failed to reverse the effects of defeat. Infusions of the selective tyrosine-related kinase B receptor (TrkB antagonist ANA-12 into the anterior BNST specifically increased social interaction in stressed females but had no effect on behavior in females naïve to defeat. These results suggest that stress-induced increases in BDNF in the anterior BNST contribute to the exaggerated social withdrawal phenotype observed in females.

  12. Sex differences and sex similarities in disgust sensitivity

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Tybur, J.M.; Bryan, A.D.; Lieberman, D.L.; Caldwell Hooper, A.E.; Merriman, L.A.

    2011-01-01

    Across two studies, we test for sex differences in the factor structure, factor loadings, concurrent validity, and means of the Three Domain Disgust Scale. In Study 1, we find that the Three Domain Disgust Scale has indistinguishable factor structure and factor loadings for men and women. In Study

  13. Sex differences in the neural representation of pain unpleasantness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Girard-Tremblay, Lydia; Auclair, Vincent; Daigle, Kathya; Léonard, Guillaume; Whittingstall, Kevin; Goffaux, Philippe

    2014-08-01

    Sex differences in pain perception are still poorly understood, but they may be related to the way the brains of men and women respond to the affective dimensions of pain. Using a matched pain intensity paradigm, where pain intensity was kept constant across participants but pain unpleasantness was left free to vary among participants, we studied the relationship between pain unpleasantness and pain-evoked brain activity in healthy men and women separately. Experimental pain was provoked using transcutaneous electrical stimulation of the sural nerve while pain-related brain activity was measured using somatosensory-evoked brain potentials with source localization. Cardiac responses to pain were also measured using electrocardiac recordings. Results revealed that subjective pain unpleasantness was strongly associated with increased perigenual anterior cingulate cortex activity in women, whereas it was strongly associated with decreased ventromedial prefrontal cortex activity in men. Only ventromedial prefrontal cortex deactivations in men were additionally associated with increased autonomic cardiac arousal. These results suggest that in order to deal with pain's objectionable properties, men preferentially deactivate prefrontal suppression regions, leading to the mobilization of threat-control circuits, whereas women recruit well-known emotion-processing areas of the brain. This article presents neuroimaging findings demonstrating that subjective pain unpleasantness ratings are associated with different pain-evoked brain responses in men and women, which has potentially important implications regarding sex differences in the risk of developing chronic pain. Copyright © 2014 American Pain Society. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  14. Sex differences in depression-like behavior after nerve injury are associated with differential changes in brain-derived neurotrophic factor levels in mice subjected to early life stress.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nishinaka, Takashi; Kinoshita, Megumi; Nakamoto, Kazuo; Tokuyama, Shogo

    2015-04-10

    We recently demonstrated that exposure to early life stress exacerbates nerve injury-induced thermal and mechanical hypersensitivity in adult male and female mice. Accumulating evidence suggests that chronic pain causes emotional dysfunction, such as anxiety and depression. In the present study, we investigated the impact of early life stress on depression-like behavior after nerve injury in mice. In addition, we examined the expression of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), which is known to be involved in the pathogenesis of depression. Early life stress was induced by maternal separation between 2 and 3 weeks of age combined with social isolation after weaning (MSSI). At 9 weeks of age, the sciatic nerve was partially ligated to elicit neuropathic pain. Depression-like behavior was evaluated using the forced swim test at 12 weeks of age. Tissue samples from different regions of the brain were collected at the end of maternal separation (3 weeks of age) or after the forced swim test (12 weeks of age). At 12 weeks of age, immobility time in the forced swim test was increased only in MSSI-stressed female mice with nerve injury. BDNF expression was increased in male, but not female, MSSI-stressed mice at 3 weeks of age. However, MSSI stress did not impact BDNF expression in male or female mice at 12 weeks of age. Our findings suggest that exposure to early life stress exacerbates emotional dysfunction induced by neuropathic pain in a sex-dependent manner. Changes in BDNF expression after early life stress may be associated with neuropathic pain-induced depression-like behavior in adulthood. Furthermore, sex differences in BDNF expression after exposure to early life stress may contribute to sex-specific susceptibility to neuropathic pain-induced emotional dysfunction. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  15. Potential Reporting Bias in Neuroimaging Studies of Sex Differences.

    Science.gov (United States)

    David, Sean P; Naudet, Florian; Laude, Jennifer; Radua, Joaquim; Fusar-Poli, Paolo; Chu, Isabella; Stefanick, Marcia L; Ioannidis, John P A

    2018-04-17

    Numerous functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) studies have reported sex differences. To empirically evaluate for evidence of excessive significance bias in this literature, we searched for published fMRI studies of human brain to evaluate sex differences, regardless of the topic investigated, in Medline and Scopus over 10 years. We analyzed the prevalence of conclusions in favor of sex differences and the correlation between study sample sizes and number of significant foci identified. In the absence of bias, larger studies (better powered) should identify a larger number of significant foci. Across 179 papers, median sample size was n = 32 (interquartile range 23-47.5). A median of 5 foci related to sex differences were reported (interquartile range, 2-9.5). Few articles (n = 2) had titles focused on no differences or on similarities (n = 3) between sexes. Overall, 158 papers (88%) reached "positive" conclusions in their abstract and presented some foci related to sex differences. There was no statistically significant relationship between sample size and the number of foci (-0.048% increase for every 10 participants, p = 0.63). The extremely high prevalence of "positive" results and the lack of the expected relationship between sample size and the number of discovered foci reflect probable reporting bias and excess significance bias in this literature.

  16. Pathways to ischemic neuronal cell death: are sex differences relevant?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    McCullough Louise D

    2008-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract We have known for some time that the epidemiology of human stroke is sexually dimorphic until late in life, well beyond the years of reproductive senescence and menopause. Now, a new concept is emerging: the mechanisms and outcome of cerebral ischemic injury are influenced strongly by biological sex as well as the availability of sex steroids to the brain. The principal mammalian estrogen (17 β estradiol or E2 is neuroprotective in many types of brain injury and has been the major focus of investigation over the past several decades. However, it is becoming increasingly clear that although hormones are a major contributor to sex-specific outcomes, they do not fully account for sex-specific responses to cerebral ischemia. The purpose of this review is to highlight recent studies in cell culture and animal models that suggest that genetic sex determines experimental stroke outcome and that divergent cell death pathways are activated after an ischemic insult. These sex differences need to be identified if we are to develop efficacious neuroprotective agents for use in stroke patients.

  17. Sex Differences in Attitudes toward Partner Infidelity

    OpenAIRE

    Michael J. Tagler; Heather M. Jeffers

    2013-01-01

    Sex differences in reactions to partner infidelity have often been studied by comparing emotional reactions to scenarios of sexual versus emotional infidelity. Men, relative to women, tend to react with more distress to partner sexual infidelity than to emotional infidelity. Evolutionary theorists interpret this difference as evidence of sexually dimorphic selection pressures. In contrast, focusing only on the simple effects within each sex, social-cognitive theorists suggest that men and wom...

  18. Sex differences associated with intermittent swim stress.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Warner, Timothy A; Libman, Matthew K; Wooten, Katherine L; Drugan, Robert C

    2013-11-01

    Various animal models of depression have been used to seek a greater understanding of stress-related disorders. However, there is still a great need for novel research in this area, as many individuals suffering from depression are resistant to current treatment methods. Women have a higher rate of depression, highlighting the need to investigate mechanisms of sex differences. Therefore, we employed a new animal model to assess symptoms of depression, known as intermittent swim stress (ISS). In this model, the animal experiences 100 trials of cold water swim stress. ISS has already been shown to cause signs of behavioral depression in males, but has yet to be assessed in females. Following ISS exposure, we looked at sex differences in the Morris water maze and forced swim test. The results indicated a spatial learning effect only in the hidden platform task between male and female controls, and stressed and control males. A consistent spatial memory effect was only seen for males exposed to ISS. In the forced swim test, both sexes exposed to ISS exhibited greater immobility, and the same males and females also showed attenuated climbing and swimming, respectively. The sex differences could be due to different neural substrates for males and females. The goal of this study was to provide the first behavioral examination of sex differences following ISS exposure, so the stage of estrous cycle was not assessed for the females. This is a necessary future direction for subsequent experiments. The current article highlights the importance of sex differences in response to stress.

  19. Sex differences in cognitive impairment and Alzheimer's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Rena; Singh, Meharvan

    2014-08-01

    Studies have shown differences in specific cognitive ability domains and risk of Alzheimer's disease between the men and women at later age. However it is important to know that sex differences in cognitive function during adulthood may have their basis in both organizational effects, i.e., occurring as early as during the neuronal development period, as well as in activational effects, where the influence of the sex steroids influence brain function in adulthood. Further, the rate of cognitive decline with aging is also different between the sexes. Understanding the biology of sex differences in cognitive function will not only provide insight into Alzheimer's disease prevention, but also is integral to the development of personalized, gender-specific medicine. This review draws on epidemiological, translational, clinical, and basic science studies to assess the impact of sex differences in cognitive function from young to old, and examines the effects of sex hormone treatments on Alzheimer's disease in men and women. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  20. Sex differences in thickness, and folding developments throughout the cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mutlu, A Kadir; Schneider, Maude; Debbané, Martin; Badoud, Deborah; Eliez, Stephan; Schaer, Marie

    2013-11-15

    While significant differences in male and female brain structures have commonly been reported, only a few studies have focused on the sex differences in the way the cortex matures over time. Here, we investigated cortical thickness maturation between the age of 6 to 30 years, using 209 longitudinally-acquired brain MRI scans. Significant sex differences in the trajectories of cortical thickness change with age were evidenced using non-linear mixed effects models. Similar statistical analyses were computed to quantify the differences between cortical gyrification changes with age in males and females. During adolescence, we observed a statistically significant higher rate of cortical thinning in females compared to males in the right temporal regions, the left temporoparietal junction and the left orbitofrontal cortex. This finding is interpreted as a faster maturation of the social brain areas in females. Concomitantly, statistically significant sex differences in cortical folding changes with age were observed only in one cluster of the right prefrontal regions, suggesting that the mechanisms underlying cortical thickness and gyrification changes with age are quite distinct. Sexual dimorphism in the developmental course of the cortical maturation may be associated with the different age of onset and clinical presentation of many psychiatric disorders between males and females. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  1. Effects of Steroid Hormones on Sex Differences in Cerebral Perfusion.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carmen Ghisleni

    Full Text Available Sex differences in the brain appear to play an important role in the prevalence and progression of various neuropsychiatric disorders, but to date little is known about the cerebral mechanisms underlying these differences. One widely reported finding is that women demonstrate higher cerebral perfusion than men, but the underlying cause of this difference in perfusion is not known. This study investigated the putative role of steroid hormones such as oestradiol, testosterone, and dehydroepiandrosterone sulphate (DHEAS as underlying factors influencing cerebral perfusion. We acquired arterial spin labelling perfusion images of 36 healthy adult subjects (16 men, 20 women. Analyses on average whole brain perfusion levels included a multiple regression analysis to test for the relative impact of each hormone on the global perfusion. Additionally, voxel-based analyses were performed to investigate the sex difference in regional perfusion as well as the correlations between local perfusion and serum oestradiol, testosterone, and DHEAS concentrations. Our results replicated the known sex difference in perfusion, with women showing significantly higher global and regional perfusion. For the global perfusion, DHEAS was the only significant predictor amongst the steroid hormones, showing a strong negative correlation with cerebral perfusion. The voxel-based analyses revealed modest sex-dependent correlations between local perfusion and testosterone, in addition to a strong modulatory effect of DHEAS in cortical, subcortical, and cerebellar regions. We conclude that DHEAS in particular may play an important role as an underlying factor driving the difference in cerebral perfusion between men and women.

  2. Sex differences in the hypothalamic control of prolactin secretion

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Grattan, D.R.; Liu, L.; Bunn, S.J.

    2001-01-01

    Full text: Sex differences in the brain may arise from the organisational effects of exposure to sex steroids during development, or from the exposure to a differential hormonal milieu in the adult. There is a marked sex difference in the neuroendocrine mechanism that regulates prolactin secretion. Levels of prolactin in the blood are higher in females than in males. Similarly, basal activity of tuberoinfundibular dopamine (TIDA) neurons, which are involved in the tonic suppression of prolactin secretion, are two fold higher in females than in males. Prolactin is known to stimulate the activity of TIDA neurons, thereby regulating its own secretion by short-loop feedback. Hence, it is thought that elevated TIDA neuronal activity in females is induced by increased prolactin in the blood. We have recently demonstrated that prolactin stimulation of TIDA neurons requires the transcription factor, STAT5b. We have now investigated prolactin secretion in male and female STAT5b-deficient mice, to test the hypothesis that sex differences in TIDA neuronal activity are dependent on stimulation by prolactin acting through STAT5b. Prolactin levels in blood were measured by radioimmunoassay, and TIDA activity was assessed by measuring concentrations of the dopamine metabolite DOPAC in the median eminence by HPLC, and by measuring tyrosine hydroxylase mRNA in the arcuate nucleus by real-time RT-PCR. The data demonstrate marked gender differences in the activity of TIDA neurons. While TIDA activity in STAT5b-deficient mice was reduced compared to wild type, the sex difference persisted. Since STAT5b is required for the actions of prolactin on these neurons, we can conclude that the sexual dimorphism in brain function is independent of gender differences in blood levels of prolactin. It seems likely that differential exposure to gonadal steroid hormones, either during development or in adulthood, might underlie the sex difference in TIDA neuronal activity. Copyright (2001

  3. Sex, Gender, and Traumatic Brain Injury: A Commentary.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Colantonio, Angela

    2016-02-01

    The goal of this supplemental issue is to address major knowledge, research, and clinical practice gaps regarding the limited focus on brain injury in girls and women as well as limited analysis of the effect of sex and gender in research on acquired brain injury. Integrating sex and gender in research is recognized as leading to better science and, ultimately, to better clinical practice. A sex and gender analytical approach to rehabilitation research is crucial to understanding traumatic brain injury and improving quality of life outcomes for survivors. Put another way, the lack of focus on sex and gender reduces the rigor of research design, the generalizability of study findings, and the effectiveness of clinical implementation and knowledge dissemination practices. The articles in this supplement examine sex and gender using a variety of methodological approaches and research contexts. Recommendations for future research on acquired brain injury that consciously incorporates sex and gender are made throughout this issue. This supplement is a product of the Girls and Women with ABI Task Force of the American Congress of Rehabilitation Medicine. Copyright © 2016 American Congress of Rehabilitation Medicine. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  4. Atomoxetine in abstinent cocaine users: Sex differences

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elise E. DeVito

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available Data presented are from a sex-differences secondary analysis of a human laboratory investigation of single doses of atomoxetine (40 mg and 80 mg versus placebo in abstinent individuals with cocaine use disorders (CUD. Subjective drug effects, cognitive performance and cardiovascular measures were assessed. The primary atomoxetine dose analyses (which do not consider sex as a factor are reported in full elsewhere (DeVito et al., 2017 [1].

  5. Sex differences in intracranial arterial bifurcations

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lindekleiv, Haakon M; Valen-Sendstad, Kristian; Morgan, Michael K

    2010-01-01

    Subarachnoid hemorrhage (SAH) is a serious condition, occurring more frequently in females than in males. SAH is mainly caused by rupture of an intracranial aneurysm, which is formed by localized dilation of the intracranial arterial vessel wall, usually at the apex of the arterial bifurcation. T....... The female preponderance is usually explained by systemic factors (hormonal influences and intrinsic wall weakness); however, the uneven sex distribution of intracranial aneurysms suggests a possible physiologic factor-a local sex difference in the intracranial arteries....

  6. Sex differences in chemosensation: sensory or cognitive?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kathrin eOhla

    2013-09-01

    Full Text Available Although the first sex-dependent differences for chemosensory processing were reported in the scientific literature over 60 years ago, the underlying mechanisms are still unknown. Generally, more pronounced sex-dependent differences are noted with increased task difficulty or with increased levels of intranasal irritation produced by the stimulus. Whether differences between the sexes arise from differences in chemosensory sensitivity of the two intranasal sensory systems involved or from differences in cognitive processing associated with emotional evaluation of the stimulants is still not known. We used simultaneous and complementary measures of electrophysiological (EEG, psychophysiological, and psychological responses to stimuli varying in intranasal irritation and oldorousness to investigate whether sex differences in the processing of intranasal irritation are mediated by varying sensitivity of the involved sensory systems or by differences in cognitive and/or emotional evaluation of the irritants. Women perceived all stimulants more irritating and they exhibited larger amplitudes of the late positive deflection of the event-related potential than men. No significant differences in sensory sensitivity, anxiety and arousal responses could be detected. Our findings suggest that men and women process intranasal irritation differently. Importantly, the differences cannot be explained by variation in sensory sensitivity to irritants, differences in anxiety or differences in physiological arousal. We propose that women allocate attention stronger to potentially noxious stimuli, which eventually causes differences in cognitive appraisal and subjective perception.

  7. Sex-related differences in foot shape.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krauss, I; Grau, S; Mauch, M; Maiwald, C; Horstmann, T

    2008-11-01

    The purpose of the study was to investigate sex-related differences in foot morphology. In total, 847 subjects were scanned using a 3-D-footscanner. Three different analysis methods were used: (1) comparisons were made for absolute foot measures within 250-270 mm foot length (FL); (2) and for averaged measures (% FL) across all sizes; (3) the feet were then classified using a cluster analysis. Within 250-270 mm FL, male feet were wider and higher (mean differences (MD) 1.3-5.9 mm). No relevant sex-related differences could be found in the comparison of averaged measures (MD 0.3-0.6% FL). Foot types were categorised into voluminous, flat-pointed and slender. Shorter feet were more often voluminous, longer feet were more likely to be narrow and flat. However, the definition of 'short' and 'long' was sex-related; thus, allometry of foot measures was different. For shoe design, measures should be derived for each size and sex separately. Different foot types should be considered to account for the variety in foot shape. Improper footwear can cause foot pain and deformity. Therefore, knowledge of sex-related differences in foot measures is important to assist proper shoe fit in both men and women. The present study supplements the field of knowledge within this context with recommendations for the manufacturing of shoes.

  8. Sex and gender differences in substance use disorders.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McHugh, R Kathryn; Votaw, Victoria R; Sugarman, Dawn E; Greenfield, Shelly F

    2017-11-10

    The gender gap in substance use disorders (SUDs), characterized by greater prevalence in men, is narrowing, highlighting the importance of understanding sex and gender differences in SUD etiology and maintenance. In this critical review, we provide an overview of sex/gender differences in the biology, epidemiology and treatment of SUDs. Biological sex differences are evident across an array of systems, including brain structure and function, endocrine function, and metabolic function. Gender (i.e., environmentally and socioculturally defined roles for men and women) also contributes to the initiation and course of substance use and SUDs. Adverse medical, psychiatric, and functional consequences associated with SUDs are often more severe in women. However, men and women do not substantively differ with respect to SUD treatment outcomes. Although several trends are beginning to emerge in the literature, findings on sex and gender differences in SUDs are complicated by the interacting contributions of biological and environmental factors. Future research is needed to further elucidate sex and gender differences, especially focusing on hormonal factors in SUD course and treatment outcomes; research translating findings between animal and human models; and gender differences in understudied populations, such as those with co-occurring psychiatric disorders and gender-specific populations, such as pregnant women. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  9. The new science of cognitive sex differences.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miller, David I; Halpern, Diane F

    2014-01-01

    Surprising new findings indicate that many conclusions about sex differences and similarities in cognitive abilities need to be reexamined. Cognitive sex differences are changing, decreasing for some tasks whereas remaining stable or increasing for other tasks. Some sex differences are detected in infancy, but the data are complex and depend on task characteristics. Diverse disciplines have revolutionized our understanding of why these differences exist. For instance, fraternal-twin studies align with earlier literature to help establish the role of prenatal androgens and large international datasets help explain how cultural factors such as economic prosperity and gender equity affect females and males differently. Understanding how biological and environmental factors interact could help maximize cognitive potential and address pressing societal issues. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  10. Sex differences in the processing of flankers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stoet, Gijsbert

    2010-04-01

    The study of sex differences in cognition has often focused on differences in spatial processing. Recently, sex differences in selective attention have been observed by Bayliss, di Pellegrino, and Tipper (2005), showing that women are more influenced than men by irrelevant spatial cues. The current study elaborates on this finding and tests whether sex differences in the processing of irrelevant information also occur in a simpler task, in which there is no need to redirect visual attention and no need to remember multiple spatial stimulus-response associations. Here, attention is studied using a novel combination of a go/no-go task and a flanker task. A total of 80 neurotypical participants were studied, and it was found that responses in women were more strongly affected by flanker information than were responses in men. This suggests that these sex differences were not due to difficulties with spatial reorientation, or remembering spatial stimulus-response relationships. The findings are discussed in the context of the hunter-gatherer theory of sex differences.

  11. Sex differences in emotional perception: Meta analysis of divergent activation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Filkowski, Megan M; Olsen, Rachel M; Duda, Bryant; Wanger, Timothy J; Sabatinelli, Dean

    2017-02-15

    Behavioral and physiological sex differences in emotional reactivity are well documented, yet comparatively few neural differences have been identified. Here we apply quantitative activation likelihood estimation (ALE) meta-analysis across functional brain imaging studies that each reported clusters of activity differentiating men and women as they participated in emotion-evoking tasks in the visual modality. This approach requires the experimental paradigm to be balanced across the sexes, and thus may provide greater clarity than previous efforts. Results across 56 emotion-eliciting studies (n=1907) reveal distinct activation in the medial prefrontal cortex, anterior cingulate cortex, frontal pole, and mediodorsal nucleus of the thalamus in men relative to women. Women show distinct activation in bilateral amygdala, hippocampus, and regions of the dorsal midbrain including the periaqueductal gray/superior colliculus and locus coeruleus. While some clusters are consistent with prevailing perspectives on the foundations of sex differences in emotional reactivity, thalamic and brainstem regions have not previously been highlighted as sexually divergent. These data strongly support the need to include sex as a factor in functional brain imaging studies of emotion, and to extend our investigative focus beyond the cortex. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  12. The influence of sex hormones on brain lateralisation

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Beking, Tess; Geuze, Reint; Groothuis, Antonius

    2015-01-01

    Brain lateralization is the phenomenon that both hemispheres of the brain are specialised in different functions. Lateralization differs in strength and direction between individuals and among tasks within individuals, potentially affecting cognitive performance. There is debate to what extent

  13. Sex differences in visuospatial abilities persist during induced hypogonadism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guerrieri, Gioia M; Wakim, Paul G; Keenan, P A; Schenkel, Linda A; Berlin, Kate; Gibson, Carolyn J; Rubinow, David R; Schmidt, Peter J

    2016-01-29

    Despite well-established sex differences in the performance on tests of several cognitive domains (e.g., visuospatial ability), few studies in humans have evaluated if these sex differences are evident both in the presence of circulating sex hormones and during sex steroid hormonal suppression. Sex differences identified in the relative absence of circulating levels of estradiol and testosterone suggest that differences in brain structure or function exist independent of current hormonal environment and are more likely a reflection of differing developmental exposures and/or genetic substrates. To evaluate cognitive performance in healthy eugonadal men and women before and again during GnRH agonist-induced hypogonadism. Men (n=16) and women (n=15) without medical or psychiatric illness were matched for IQ. Cognitive tests were performed at baseline (when eugonadal) and after 6-8 weeks of GnRH agonist-induced gonadal suppression. The test batteries included measures of verbal and spatial memory, spatial ability, verbal fluency, motor speed/dexterity, and attention/concentration. Data were analyzed using repeated-measures models. During both eugonadism and hypogonadism, men performed significantly better than women on several measures of visuospatial performance including mental rotation, line orientation, Money Road Map, Porteus maze, and complex figure drawing. Although some test performances showed an effect of hormone treatment, the majority of these differences reflected an improved performance during hypogonadism compared with baseline (and probably reflected practice effects). The well-documented male advantage in visuospatial performance, which we observed during eugonadal conditions, was maintained in the context of short-term suppression of gonadal function in both men and women. These findings suggest that, in humans, sex differences in visuospatial performance are not merely dependent on differences in the current circulating sex steroid environment. Thus

  14. Sex differences in social cognition: The case of face processing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Proverbio, Alice Mado

    2017-01-02

    Several studies have demonstrated that women show a greater interest for social information and empathic attitude than men. This article reviews studies on sex differences in the brain, with particular reference to how males and females process faces and facial expressions, social interactions, pain of others, infant faces, faces in things (pareidolia phenomenon), opposite-sex faces, humans vs. landscapes, incongruent behavior, motor actions, biological motion, erotic pictures, and emotional information. Sex differences in oxytocin-based attachment response and emotional memory are also mentioned. In addition, we investigated how 400 different human faces were evaluated for arousal and valence dimensions by a group of healthy male and female University students. Stimuli were carefully balanced for sensory and perceptual characteristics, age, facial expression, and sex. As a whole, women judged all human faces as more positive and more arousing than men. Furthermore, they showed a preference for the faces of children and the elderly in the arousal evaluation. Regardless of face aesthetics, age, or facial expression, women rated human faces higher than men. The preference for opposite- vs. same-sex faces strongly interacted with facial age. Overall, both women and men exhibited differences in facial processing that could be interpreted in the light of evolutionary psychobiology. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  15. Anatomically discrete sex differences in neuroplasticity in zebra finches as reflected by perineuronal nets

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Cornez, Gilles; ter Haar, Sita M; Cornil, Charlotte A; Balthazart, Jacques

    2015-01-01

    Large morphological sex differences in the vertebrate brain were initially identified in song control nuclei of oscines. Besides gross differences between volumes of nuclei in males and females, sex differences also concern the size and dendritic arborization of neurons and various neurochemical

  16. Sex-Steroid Hormone Manipulation Reduces Brain Response to Reward

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Macoveanu, Julian; Henningsson, Susanne; Pinborg, Anja

    2016-01-01

    's vulnerability for mood disorders is linked to sex-steroid dynamics by investigating the effects of a pharmacologically induced fluctuation in ovarian sex steroids on the brain response to monetary rewards. In a double-blinded placebo controlled study, healthy women were randomized to receive either placebo...... or the gonadotropin-releasing hormone agonist (GnRHa) goserelin, which causes a net decrease in sex-steroid levels. Fifty-eight women performed a gambling task while undergoing functional MRI at baseline, during the mid-follicular phase, and again following the intervention. The gambling task enabled us to map...

  17. Sex differences of human cortical blood flow and energy metabolism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aanerud, Joel; Borghammer, Per; Rodell, Anders; Jónsdottir, Kristjana Y; Gjedde, Albert

    2017-07-01

    Brain energy metabolism is held to reflect energy demanding processes in neuropil related to the density and activity of synapses. There is recent evidence that men have higher density of synapses in temporal cortex than women. One consequence of these differences would be different rates of cortical energy turnover and blood flow in men and women. To test the hypotheses that rates of oxygen consumption (CMRO 2 ) and cerebral blood flow are higher in men than in women in regions of cerebral cortex, and that the differences persist with aging, we used positron emission tomography to determine cerebral blood flow and cerebral metabolic rate of oxygen as functions of age in healthy volunteers of both sexes. Cerebral metabolic rate of oxygen did not change with age for either sex and there were no differences of mean values of cerebral metabolic rate of oxygen between men and women in cerebral cortex. Women had significant decreases of cerebral blood flow as function of age in frontal and parietal lobes. Young women had significantly higher cerebral blood flow than men in frontal and temporal lobes, but these differences had disappeared at age 65. The absent sex difference of cerebral energy turnover suggests that the known differences of synaptic density between the sexes are counteracted by opposite differences of individual synaptic activity.

  18. Sex differences in stress effects on emotional learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Merz, Christian J; Wolf, Oliver T

    2017-01-02

    Stress influences emotional learning and memory processes. These effects are thought to underlie stress-associated mental disorders. Sex differences in stress reactivity and in central nervous system stress sensitivity illustrate the important modulatory role of sex hormones. This Review outlines how stress hormones influence different stages of the fear conditioning process, such as fear acquisition, extinction, and retrieval. Results will be compared with findings on the impact of stress on episodic memory. The focus is on the available human data on sex differences and the impact sex hormones have on the stress effects on emotional learning and memory. It will become apparent that the menstrual cycle but also the intake of hormonal contraceptives modulates the impact of stress on brain and behavior. Additional basic research is needed for a deeper insight regarding the interplay between stress and sex hormones in emotion and cognition. In addition, new treatment options might be derived to optimize existing strategies such as exposure therapy, which relies on the principles of fear conditioning. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  19. Functional sex differences in human primary auditory cortex

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ruytjens, Liesbet; Georgiadis, Janniko R.; Holstege, Gert; Wit, Hero P.; Albers, Frans W.J.; Willemsen, Antoon T.M.

    2007-01-01

    We used PET to study cortical activation during auditory stimulation and found sex differences in the human primary auditory cortex (PAC). Regional cerebral blood flow (rCBF) was measured in 10 male and 10 female volunteers while listening to sounds (music or white noise) and during a baseline (no auditory stimulation). We found a sex difference in activation of the left and right PAC when comparing music to noise. The PAC was more activated by music than by noise in both men and women. But this difference between the two stimuli was significantly higher in men than in women. To investigate whether this difference could be attributed to either music or noise, we compared both stimuli with the baseline and revealed that noise gave a significantly higher activation in the female PAC than in the male PAC. Moreover, the male group showed a deactivation in the right prefrontal cortex when comparing noise to the baseline, which was not present in the female group. Interestingly, the auditory and prefrontal regions are anatomically and functionally linked and the prefrontal cortex is known to be engaged in auditory tasks that involve sustained or selective auditory attention. Thus we hypothesize that differences in attention result in a different deactivation of the right prefrontal cortex, which in turn modulates the activation of the PAC and thus explains the sex differences found in the activation of the PAC. Our results suggest that sex is an important factor in auditory brain studies. (orig.)

  20. Clinical epidemiology of Alzheimer's disease: assessing sex and gender differences.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mielke, Michelle M; Vemuri, Prashanthi; Rocca, Walter A

    2014-01-01

    With the aging of the population, the burden of Alzheimer's disease (AD) is rapidly expanding. More than 5 million people in the US alone are affected with AD and this number is expected to triple by 2050. While men may have a higher risk of mild cognitive impairment (MCI), an intermediate stage between normal aging and dementia, women are disproportionally affected with AD. One explanation is that men may die of competing causes of death earlier in life, so that only the most resilient men may survive to older ages. However, many other factors should also be considered to explain the sex differences. In this review, we discuss the differences observed in men versus women in the incidence and prevalence of MCI and AD, in the structure and function of the brain, and in the sex-specific and gender-specific risk and protective factors for AD. In medical research, sex refers to biological differences such as chromosomal differences (eg, XX versus XY chromosomes), gonadal differences, or hormonal differences. In contrast, gender refers to psychosocial and cultural differences between men and women (eg, access to education and occupation). Both factors play an important role in the development and progression of diseases, including AD. Understanding both sex- and gender-specific risk and protective factors for AD is critical for developing individualized interventions for the prevention and treatment of AD.

  1. Functional sex differences in human primary auditory cortex

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ruytjens, Liesbet [University Medical Center Groningen, Department of Otorhinolaryngology, Groningen (Netherlands); University Medical Center Utrecht, Department Otorhinolaryngology, P.O. Box 85500, Utrecht (Netherlands); Georgiadis, Janniko R. [University of Groningen, University Medical Center Groningen, Department of Anatomy and Embryology, Groningen (Netherlands); Holstege, Gert [University of Groningen, University Medical Center Groningen, Center for Uroneurology, Groningen (Netherlands); Wit, Hero P. [University Medical Center Groningen, Department of Otorhinolaryngology, Groningen (Netherlands); Albers, Frans W.J. [University Medical Center Utrecht, Department Otorhinolaryngology, P.O. Box 85500, Utrecht (Netherlands); Willemsen, Antoon T.M. [University Medical Center Groningen, Department of Nuclear Medicine and Molecular Imaging, Groningen (Netherlands)

    2007-12-15

    We used PET to study cortical activation during auditory stimulation and found sex differences in the human primary auditory cortex (PAC). Regional cerebral blood flow (rCBF) was measured in 10 male and 10 female volunteers while listening to sounds (music or white noise) and during a baseline (no auditory stimulation). We found a sex difference in activation of the left and right PAC when comparing music to noise. The PAC was more activated by music than by noise in both men and women. But this difference between the two stimuli was significantly higher in men than in women. To investigate whether this difference could be attributed to either music or noise, we compared both stimuli with the baseline and revealed that noise gave a significantly higher activation in the female PAC than in the male PAC. Moreover, the male group showed a deactivation in the right prefrontal cortex when comparing noise to the baseline, which was not present in the female group. Interestingly, the auditory and prefrontal regions are anatomically and functionally linked and the prefrontal cortex is known to be engaged in auditory tasks that involve sustained or selective auditory attention. Thus we hypothesize that differences in attention result in a different deactivation of the right prefrontal cortex, which in turn modulates the activation of the PAC and thus explains the sex differences found in the activation of the PAC. Our results suggest that sex is an important factor in auditory brain studies. (orig.)

  2. Sex Differences in Doctoral Student Publication Rates

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lubienski, Sarah Theule; Miller, Emily K.; Saclarides, Evthokia Stephanie

    2018-01-01

    Women in the sciences who earn PhDs are less likely than their male counterparts to pursue tenure-track positions at research universities. Moreover, among those who become STEM researchers, men have been found to publish more than women. These patterns raise questions about when sex differences in publication begin. Using data from a survey of…

  3. Sex differences in consequences of musculoskeletal pain

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Wijnhoven, H. A H; de Vet, Henrica C W; Picavet, H. Susan J

    STUDY DESIGN. Cross-sectional population-based study. OBJECTIVE. To study sex differences in consequences of musculoskeletal pain (MP): limited functioning, work leave or disability, and healthcare use. SUMMARY OF BACKGROUND DATA. MP is a major public health problem in developed countries due to

  4. Sex differences in adults' motivation to achieve

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van der Sluis, S.; Vinkhuyzen, A.A.E.; Boomsma, D.I.; Posthuma, D.

    2010-01-01

    Achievement motivation is considered a prerequisite for success in academic as well as non-academic settings. We studied sex differences in academic and general achievement motivation in an adult sample of 338 men and 497 women (ages 18-70 years). Multi-group covariance and means structure analysis

  5. The Stability of Same-Sex Cohabitation, Different-Sex Cohabitation, and Marriage

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lau, Charles Q.

    2012-01-01

    This study contributes to the emerging demographic literature on same-sex couples by comparing the level and correlates of union stability among 4 types of couples: (a) male same-sex cohabitation, (b) female same-sex cohabitation, (c) different-sex cohabitation, and (d) different-sex marriage. The author analyzed data from 2 British birth cohort…

  6. Sex differences in the physiology of eating

    Science.gov (United States)

    Asarian, Lori

    2013-01-01

    Hypothalamic-pituitary-gonadal (HPG) axis function fundamentally affects the physiology of eating. We review sex differences in the physiological and pathophysiological controls of amounts eaten in rats, mice, monkeys, and humans. These controls result from interactions among genetic effects, organizational effects of reproductive hormones (i.e., permanent early developmental effects), and activational effects of these hormones (i.e., effects dependent on hormone levels). Male-female sex differences in the physiology of eating involve both organizational and activational effects of androgens and estrogens. An activational effect of estrogens decreases eating 1) during the periovulatory period of the ovarian cycle in rats, mice, monkeys, and women and 2) tonically between puberty and reproductive senescence or ovariectomy in rats and monkeys, sometimes in mice, and possibly in women. Estrogens acting on estrogen receptor-α (ERα) in the caudal medial nucleus of the solitary tract appear to mediate these effects in rats. Androgens, prolactin, and other reproductive hormones also affect eating in rats. Sex differences in eating are mediated by alterations in orosensory capacity and hedonics, gastric mechanoreception, ghrelin, CCK, glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1), glucagon, insulin, amylin, apolipoprotein A-IV, fatty-acid oxidation, and leptin. The control of eating by central neurochemical signaling via serotonin, MSH, neuropeptide Y, Agouti-related peptide (AgRP), melanin-concentrating hormone, and dopamine is modulated by HPG function. Finally, sex differences in the physiology of eating may contribute to human obesity, anorexia nervosa, and binge eating. The variety and physiological importance of what has been learned so far warrant intensifying basic, translational, and clinical research on sex differences in eating. PMID:23904103

  7. Sex differences in T cells in hypertension.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tipton, Ashlee J; Sullivan, Jennifer C

    2014-12-01

    Hypertension is a major risk factor for cardiovascular disease, stroke, and end-organ damage. There is a sex difference in blood pressure (BP) that begins in adolescence and continues into adulthood, in which men have a higher prevalence of hypertension compared with women until the sixth decade of life. Less than 50% of hypertensive adults in the United States manage to control their BP to recommended levels using current therapeutic options, and women are more likely than are men to have uncontrolled high BP. This, is despite the facts that more women compared with men are aware that they have hypertension and that women are more likely to seek treatment for the disease. Novel therapeutic targets need to be identified in both sexes to increase the percentage of hypertensive individuals with controlled BP. The purpose of this article was to review the available literature on the role of T cells in BP control in both sexes, and the potential therapeutic application/implications of targeting immune cells in hypertension. A search of PubMed was conducted to determine the impact of sex on T cell-mediated control of BP. The search terms included sex, gender, estrogen, testosterone, inflammation, T cells, T regulatory cells, Th17 cells, hypertension, and blood pressure. Additional data were included from our laboratory examinations of cytokine expression in the kidneys of male and female spontaneously hypertensive rats (SHRs) and differential gene expression in both the renal cortex and mesenteric arterial bed of male and female SHRs. There is a growing scientific literature base regarding the role of T cells in the pathogenesis of hypertension and BP control; however, the majority of these studies have been performed exclusively in males, despite the fact that both men and women develop hypertension. There is increasing evidence that although T cells also mediate BP in females, there are distinct differences in both the T-cell profile and the functional impact of sex

  8. Sex Differences in Insular Cortex Gyri Responses to the Valsalva Maneuver

    OpenAIRE

    Macey, Paul M.; Rieken, Nicholas S.; Kumar, Rajesh; Ogren, Jennifer A.; Middlekauff, Holly R.; Wu, Paula; Woo, Mary A.; Harper, Ronald M.

    2016-01-01

    Sex differences in autonomic regulation may underlie cardiovascular disease variations between females and males. One key autonomic brain region is the insular cortex, which typically consists of five main gyri in each hemisphere, and shows a topographical organization of autonomic function across those gyri. The present study aims to identify possible sex differences in organization of autonomic function in the insula. We studied brain functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) responses t...

  9. Sex Differences in the Cerebral Collateral Circulation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Faber, James E; Moore, Scott M; Lucitti, Jennifer L; Aghajanian, Amir; Zhang, Hua

    2017-06-01

    Premenopausal women and intact female rodents sustain smaller cerebral infarctions than males. Several sex-dependent differences have been identified as potential contributors, but many questions remain unanswered. Mice exhibit wide variation in native collateral number and diameter (collateral extent) that is dependent on differences in genetic background, aging, and other comorbidities and that contributes to their also-wide differences in infarct volume. Likewise, variation in infarct volume correlates with differences in collateral-dependent blood flow in patients with acute ischemic stroke. We examined whether extent of pial collateral arterioles and posterior communicating collateral arteries (PComAs) differ depending on sex in young, aged, obese, hypertensive, and genetically different mice. We combined new data with meta-analysis of our previously published data. Females of C57BL/6J (B6) and BALB/cByJ (BC) strains sustained smaller infarctions than males after permanent MCA occlusion. This protection was unchanged in BC mice after introgression of the B6 allele of Dce1, the major genetic determinant of variation in pial collaterals among mouse strains. Consistent with this, collateral extent in these and other strains did not differ with sex. Extent of PComAs and primary cerebral arteries also did not vary with sex. No dimorphism was evident for loss of pial collateral number and/or diameter (collateral rarefaction) caused by aging, obesity, and hypertension, nor for collateral remodeling after pMCAO. However, rarefaction was greater in females with long-standing hypertension. We conclude that smaller infarct volume in female mice is not due to greater collateral extent, greater remodeling, or less rarefaction caused by aging, obesity, or hypertension.

  10. Sex Differences in Attitudes toward Partner Infidelity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michael J. Tagler

    2013-10-01

    Full Text Available Sex differences in reactions to partner infidelity have often been studied by comparing emotional reactions to scenarios of sexual versus emotional infidelity. Men, relative to women, tend to react with more distress to partner sexual infidelity than to emotional infidelity. Evolutionary theorists interpret this difference as evidence of sexually dimorphic selection pressures. In contrast, focusing only on the simple effects within each sex, social-cognitive theorists suggest that men and women do not differ in their reactions to partner infidelity. As evidenced by recent rival meta-analytic reports, these diverging perspectives remain largely unresolved and contentious. The present study was designed to take a new approach by measuring attitudes toward partner infidelity. Results were consistent with the evolutionary perspective: Men, to a significantly larger degree than women, evaluated partner sexual infidelity more negatively than emotional infidelity.

  11. Sex differences in attitudes toward partner infidelity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tagler, Michael J; Jeffers, Heather M

    2013-08-06

    Sex differences in reactions to partner infidelity have often been studied by comparing emotional reactions to scenarios of sexual versus emotional infidelity. Men, relative to women, tend to react with more distress to partner sexual infidelity than to emotional infidelity. Evolutionary theorists interpret this difference as evidence of sexually dimorphic selection pressures. In contrast, focusing only on the simple effects within each sex, social-cognitive theorists suggest that men and women do not differ in their reactions to partner infidelity. As evidenced by recent rival meta-analytic reports, these diverging perspectives remain largely unresolved and contentious. The present study was designed to take a new approach by measuring attitudes toward partner infidelity. Results were consistent with the evolutionary perspective: Men, to a significantly larger degree than women, evaluated partner sexual infidelity more negatively than emotional infidelity.

  12. Sex-dependent differences in voluntary physical activity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rosenfeld, Cheryl S

    2017-01-02

    Numbers of overweight and obese individuals are increasing in the United States and globally, and, correspondingly, the associated health care costs are rising dramatically. More than one-third of children are currently considered obese with a predisposition to type 2 diabetes, and it is likely that their metabolic conditions will worsen with age. Physical inactivity has also risen to be the leading cause of many chronic, noncommunicable diseases (NCD). Children are more physically inactive now than they were in past decades, which may be due to intrinsic and extrinsic factors. In rodents, the amount of time engaged in spontaneous activity within the home cage is a strong predictor of later adiposity and weight gain. Thus, it is important to understand primary motivators stimulating physical activity (PA). There are normal sex differences in PA levels in rodents and humans. The perinatal environment can induce sex-dependent differences in PA disturbances. This Review considers the current evidence for sex differences in PA in rodents and humans. The rodent studies showing that early exposure to environmental chemicals can shape later adult PA responses are discussed. Next, whether there are different motivators stimulating exercise in male vs. female humans are examined. Finally, the brain regions, genes, and pathways that modulate PA in rodents, and possibly by translation in humans, are described. A better understanding of why each sex remains physically active through the life span could open new avenues for preventing and treating obesity in children and adults. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  13. Sex-Dependent Effects of Developmental Lead Exposure on the Brain

    Science.gov (United States)

    Singh, Garima; Singh, Vikrant; Sobolewski, Marissa; Cory-Slechta, Deborah A.; Schneider, Jay S.

    2018-01-01

    The role of sex as an effect modifier of developmental lead (Pb) exposure has until recently received little attention. Lead exposure in early life can affect brain development with persisting influences on cognitive and behavioral functioning, as well as, elevated risks for developing a variety of diseases and disorders in later life. Although both sexes are affected by Pb exposure, the incidence, manifestation, and severity of outcomes appears to differ in males and females. Results from epidemiologic and animal studies indicate significant effect modification by sex, however, the results are not consistent across studies. Unfortunately, only a limited number of human epidemiological studies have included both sexes in independent outcome analyses limiting our ability to draw definitive conclusions regarding sex-differentiated outcomes. Additionally, due to various methodological differences across studies, there is still not a good mechanistic understanding of the molecular effects of lead on the brain and the factors that influence differential responses to Pb based on sex. In this review, focused on prenatal and postnatal Pb exposures in humans and animal models, we discuss current literature supporting sex differences in outcomes in response to Pb exposure and explore some of the ideas regarding potential molecular mechanisms that may contribute to sex-related differences in outcomes from developmental Pb exposure. The sex-dependent variability in outcomes from developmental Pb exposure may arise from a combination of complex factors, including, but not limited to, intrinsic sex-specific molecular/genetic mechanisms and external risk factors including sex-specific responses to environmental stressors which may act through shared epigenetic pathways to influence the genome and behavioral output. PMID:29662502

  14. Sex-Dependent Effects of Developmental Lead Exposure on the Brain

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Garima Singh

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available The role of sex as an effect modifier of developmental lead (Pb exposure has until recently received little attention. Lead exposure in early life can affect brain development with persisting influences on cognitive and behavioral functioning, as well as, elevated risks for developing a variety of diseases and disorders in later life. Although both sexes are affected by Pb exposure, the incidence, manifestation, and severity of outcomes appears to differ in males and females. Results from epidemiologic and animal studies indicate significant effect modification by sex, however, the results are not consistent across studies. Unfortunately, only a limited number of human epidemiological studies have included both sexes in independent outcome analyses limiting our ability to draw definitive conclusions regarding sex-differentiated outcomes. Additionally, due to various methodological differences across studies, there is still not a good mechanistic understanding of the molecular effects of lead on the brain and the factors that influence differential responses to Pb based on sex. In this review, focused on prenatal and postnatal Pb exposures in humans and animal models, we discuss current literature supporting sex differences in outcomes in response to Pb exposure and explore some of the ideas regarding potential molecular mechanisms that may contribute to sex-related differences in outcomes from developmental Pb exposure. The sex-dependent variability in outcomes from developmental Pb exposure may arise from a combination of complex factors, including, but not limited to, intrinsic sex-specific molecular/genetic mechanisms and external risk factors including sex-specific responses to environmental stressors which may act through shared epigenetic pathways to influence the genome and behavioral output.

  15. Role of Estrogen and Other Sex Hormones in Brain Aging. Neuroprotection and DNA Repair

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zárate, Sandra; Stevnsner, Tinna; Gredilla, Ricardo

    2017-01-01

    Aging is an inevitable biological process characterized by a progressive decline in physiological function and increased susceptibility to disease. The detrimental effects of aging are observed in all tissues, the brain being the most important one due to its main role in the homeostasis of the organism. As our knowledge about the underlying mechanisms of brain aging increases, potential approaches to preserve brain function rise significantly. Accumulating evidence suggests that loss of genomic maintenance may contribute to aging, especially in the central nervous system (CNS) owing to its low DNA repair capacity. Sex hormones, particularly estrogens, possess potent antioxidant properties and play important roles in maintaining normal reproductive and non-reproductive functions. They exert neuroprotective actions and their loss during aging and natural or surgical menopause is associated with mitochondrial dysfunction, neuroinflammation, synaptic decline, cognitive impairment and increased risk of age-related disorders. Moreover, loss of sex hormones has been suggested to promote an accelerated aging phenotype eventually leading to the development of brain hypometabolism, a feature often observed in menopausal women and prodromal Alzheimer’s disease (AD). Although data on the relation between sex hormones and DNA repair mechanisms in the brain is still limited, various investigations have linked sex hormone levels with different DNA repair enzymes. Here, we review estrogen anti-aging and neuroprotective mechanisms, which are currently an area of intense study, together with the effect they may have on the DNA repair capacity in the brain. PMID:29311911

  16. Role of Estrogen and Other Sex Hormones in Brain Aging. Neuroprotection and DNA Repair

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sandra Zárate

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available Aging is an inevitable biological process characterized by a progressive decline in physiological function and increased susceptibility to disease. The detrimental effects of aging are observed in all tissues, the brain being the most important one due to its main role in the homeostasis of the organism. As our knowledge about the underlying mechanisms of brain aging increases, potential approaches to preserve brain function rise significantly. Accumulating evidence suggests that loss of genomic maintenance may contribute to aging, especially in the central nervous system (CNS owing to its low DNA repair capacity. Sex hormones, particularly estrogens, possess potent antioxidant properties and play important roles in maintaining normal reproductive and non-reproductive functions. They exert neuroprotective actions and their loss during aging and natural or surgical menopause is associated with mitochondrial dysfunction, neuroinflammation, synaptic decline, cognitive impairment and increased risk of age-related disorders. Moreover, loss of sex hormones has been suggested to promote an accelerated aging phenotype eventually leading to the development of brain hypometabolism, a feature often observed in menopausal women and prodromal Alzheimer’s disease (AD. Although data on the relation between sex hormones and DNA repair mechanisms in the brain is still limited, various investigations have linked sex hormone levels with different DNA repair enzymes. Here, we review estrogen anti-aging and neuroprotective mechanisms, which are currently an area of intense study, together with the effect they may have on the DNA repair capacity in the brain.

  17. Sex differences in navigation strategy and efficiency.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boone, Alexander P; Gong, Xinyi; Hegarty, Mary

    2018-05-22

    Research on human navigation has indicated that males and females differ in self-reported navigation strategy as well as objective measures of navigation efficiency. In two experiments, we investigated sex differences in navigation strategy and efficiency using an objective measure of strategy, the dual-solution paradigm (DSP; Marchette, Bakker, & Shelton, 2011). Although navigation by shortcuts and learned routes were the primary strategies used in both experiments, as in previous research on the DSP, individuals also utilized route reversals and sometimes found the goal location as a result of wandering. Importantly, sex differences were found in measures of both route selection and navigation efficiency. In particular, males were more likely to take shortcuts and reached their goal location faster than females, while females were more likely to follow learned routes and wander. Self-report measures of strategy were only weakly correlated with objective measures of strategy, casting doubt on their usefulness. This research indicates that the sex difference in navigation efficiency is large, and only partially related to an individual's navigation strategy as measured by the dual-solution paradigm.

  18. Sex differences in DNA methylation of the cord blood are related to sex-bias psychiatric diseases

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maschietto, Mariana; Bastos, Laura Caroline; Tahira, Ana Carolina; Bastos, Elen Pereira; Euclydes, Veronica Luiza Vale; Brentani, Alexandra; Fink, Günther; de Baumont, Angelica; Felipe-Silva, Aloísio; Francisco, Rossana Pulcineli Vieira; Gouveia, Gisele; Grisi, Sandra Josefina Ferraz Ellero; Escobar, Ana Maria Ulhoa; Moreira-Filho, Carlos Alberto; Polanczyk, Guilherme Vanoni; Miguel, Euripedes Constantino; Brentani, Helena

    2017-03-01

    Sex differences in the prevalence of psychiatric disorders are well documented, with exposure to stress during gestation differentially impacting females and males. We explored sex-specific DNA methylation in the cord blood of 39 females and 32 males born at term and with appropriate weight at birth regarding their potential connection to psychiatric outcomes. Mothers were interviewed to gather information about environmental factors (gestational exposure) that could interfere with the methylation profiles in the newborns. Bisulphite converted DNA was hybridized to Illumina HumanMethylation450 BeadChips. Excluding XYS probes, there were 2,332 differentially methylated CpG sites (DMSs) between sexes, which were enriched within brain modules of co-methylated CpGs during brain development and also differentially methylated in the brains of boys and girls. Genes associated with the DMSs were enriched for neurodevelopmental disorders, particularly for CpG sites found differentially methylated in brain tissue between patients with schizophrenia and controls. Moreover, the DMS had an overlap of 890 (38%) CpG sites with a cohort submitted to toxic exposition during gestation. This study supports the evidences that sex differences in DNA methylation of autosomes act as a primary driver of sex differences that are found in psychiatric outcomes.

  19. Sex and Age Differences in Attitude toward the Opposite Sex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Silver, Rawley

    1997-01-01

    Examines fantasies about the opposite sex expressed by 116 children, adolescents, and adults responding to the Drawing from Imagination task of the Silver Drawing Test of Cognition and Emotion. Results indicate that both males and females expressed more negative than positive feelings toward subjects of the opposite sex. Males were more negative.…

  20. Sex Differences in Countermovement Jump Phase Characteristics

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    John J. McMahon

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available The countermovement jump (CMJ is commonly used to explore sex differences in neuromuscular function, but previous studies have only reported gross CMJ measures or have partly examined CMJ phase characteristics. The purpose of this study was to explore differences in CMJ phase characteristics between male and female athletes by comparing the force-, power-, velocity-, and displacement-time curves throughout the entire CMJ, in addition to gross measures. Fourteen men and fourteen women performed three CMJs on a force platform from which a range of kinetic and kinematic variables were calculated via forward dynamics. Jump height (JH, reactive strength index modified, relative peak concentric power, and eccentric and concentric displacement, velocity, and relative impulse were all greater for men (g = 0.58–1.79. Relative force-time curves were similar between sexes, but relative power-, velocity-, and displacement-time curves were greater for men at 90%–95% (immediately before and after peak power, 47%–54% (start of eccentric phase and 85%–100% (latter half of concentric phase, and 65%–87% (bottom of countermovement and initial concentric phase of normalized jump time, respectively. The CMJ distinguished between sexes, with men demonstrating greater JH through applying a larger concentric impulse and, thus, achieving greater velocity throughout most of the concentric phase, including take-off.

  1. Antecedents and sex/gender differences in youth suicidal behavior

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rhodes, Anne E; Boyle, Michael H; Bridge, Jeffrey A; Sinyor, Mark; Links, Paul S; Tonmyr, Lil; Skinner, Robin; Bethell, Jennifer M; Carlisle, Corine; Goodday, Sarah; Hottes, Travis Salway; Newton, Amanda; Bennett, Kathryn; Sundar, Purnima; Cheung, Amy H; Szatmari, Peter

    2014-01-01

    Suicide is the second leading cause of death in youth globally; however, there is uncertainty about how best to intervene. Suicide rates are typically higher in males than females, while the converse is true for suicide attempts. We review this “gender paradox” in youth, and in particular, the age-dependency of these sex/gender differences and the developmental mechanisms that may explain them. Epidemiologic, genetic, neurodevelopmental and psychopathological research have identified suicidal behaviour risks arising from genetic vulnerabilities and sex/gender differences in early adverse environments, neurodevelopment, mental disorder and their complex interconnections. Further, evolving sex-/gender-defined social expectations and norms have been thought to influence suicide risk. In particular, how youth perceive and cope with threats and losses (including conforming to others’ or one’s own expectations of sex/gender identity) and adapt to pain (through substance use and help-seeking behaviours). Taken together, considering brain plasticity over the lifespan, these proposed antecedents to youth suicide highlight the importance of interventions that alter early environment(s) (e.g., childhood maltreatment) and/or one’s ability to adapt to them. Further, such interventions may have more enduring protective effects, for the individual and for future generations, if implemented in youth. PMID:25540727

  2. Sexually selected sex differences in competitiveness explain sex differences in changes in drinking game participation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hone, Liana S E; McCullough, Michael

    2015-05-14

    Drinking games are a risk factor for behavioral and health problems among university students. Previous cross-sectional research by Hone, Carter, and McCullough (2013) replicated well-established sex differences in drinking game behaviors (i.e., that men are more active drinking game participants than are women) and university drinking problems more generally. Hone et al. (2013) also found that these male-specific behavioral patterns are attributable in part to the fact that men's generally unrestricted sexual strategies, plus their social competitiveness, motivate them to participate in drinking games to display their fortitude and compete with same-sex rivals. Here, the authors conducted a study to evaluate with greater causal rigor whether sex differences in sexual restrictedness and social competitiveness-and sex differences in motivations for participating in drinking games in particular-are partially responsible for the sex differences in university students' drinking game behaviors and drinking problems. Sex differences in changes in frequency of drinking game participation were partially mediated by competitive motivations for participating in drinking games and by the effects of social competitiveness on competitive drinking game motivation. These findings lend additional support to the proposition that participation in drinking games is motivated in part by their suitability as a venue for sexual competition in university students' day-to-day lives.

  3. Sexually Selected Sex Differences in Competitiveness Explain Sex Differences in Changes in Drinking Game Participation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Liana S. E. Hone

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available Drinking games are a risk factor for behavioral and health problems among university students. Previous cross-sectional research by Hone, Carter, and McCullough (2013 replicated well-established sex differences in drinking game behaviors (i.e., that men are more active drinking game participants than are women and university drinking problems more generally. Hone et al. (2013 also found that these male-specific behavioral patterns are attributable in part to the fact that men's generally unrestricted sexual strategies, plus their social competitiveness, motivate them to participate in drinking games to display their fortitude and compete with same-sex rivals. Here, the authors conducted a study to evaluate with greater causal rigor whether sex differences in sexual restrictedness and social competitiveness—and sex differences in motivations for participating in drinking games in particular—are partially responsible for the sex differences in university students' drinking game behaviors and drinking problems. Sex differences in changes in frequency of drinking game participation were partially mediated by competitive motivations for participating in drinking games and by the effects of social competitiveness on competitive drinking game motivation. These findings lend additional support to the proposition that participation in drinking games is motivated in part by their suitability as a venue for sexual competition in university students' day-to-day lives.

  4. Functional neuroimaging of sex differences in autobiographical memory recall.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Young, Kymberly D; Bellgowan, Patrick S F; Bodurka, Jerzy; Drevets, Wayne C

    2013-12-01

    Autobiographical memory (AM) is episodic memory for personally experienced events. The brain areas underlying AM retrieval are known to include several prefrontal cortical and medial temporal lobe regions. Sex differences in AM recall have been reported in several behavioral studies, but the functional anatomical correlates underlying such differences remain unclear. This study used fMRI to compare the neural correlates of AM recall between healthy male and female participants (n = 20 per group). AM recall in response to positive, negative, and neutral cue words was compared to a semantic memory task involving the generation of examples from a category using emotionally valenced cues. Behaviorally, females recalled more negative and fewer positive AMs compared with males, while ratings of arousal, vividness, and memory age did not differ significantly between sexes. Males and females also did not differ significantly in their performance on control tasks. Neurophysiologically, females showed increased hemodynamic activity compared to males in the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC), dorsal anterior insula, and precuneus while recalling specific AMs (all valences combined); increased activity in the DLPFC, transverse temporal gyrus, and precuneus while recalling positive AMs; and increased activity in the anterior cingulate cortex, precuneus, amygdala, and temporopolar cortex when recalling negative AMs. When comparing positive to negative AMs directly, males and females differed in their BOLD responses in the hippocampus and DLPFC. We propose that the differential hemodynamic changes may reflect sex-specific cognitive strategies during recall of AMs irrespective of the phenomenological properties of those memories. Copyright © 2012 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  5. A Theoretical Analysis of Sex Differences In Same-Sex Friendships.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barth, Robert J.; Kinder, Bill N.

    1988-01-01

    Investigates sex differences in same-sex friendships of 312 undergraduate students in terms of the intersection and social penetration model of relationship development, and Bem's theory of sex role orientation. Finds significant sex-related differences in depth, duration, and involvement. (FMW)

  6. The effects of age, sex, and hormones on emotional conflict-related brain response during adolescence

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cservenka, Anita; Stroup, Madison L.; Etkin, Amit; Nagel, Bonnie J.

    2015-01-01

    While cognitive and emotional systems both undergo development during adolescence, few studies have explored top-down inhibitory control brain activity in the context of affective processing, critical to informing adolescent psychopathology. In this study, we used functional magnetic resonance imaging to examine brain response during an Emotional Conflict (EmC) Task across 10–15-year-old youth. During the EmC Task, participants indicated the emotion of facial expressions, while disregarding emotion-congruent and incongruent words printed across the faces. We examined the relationships of age, sex, and gonadal hormones with brain activity on Incongruent vs. Congruent trials. Age was negatively associated with middle frontal gyrus activity, controlling for performance and movement confounds. Sex differences were present in occipital and parietal cortices, and were driven by activation in females, and deactivation in males to Congruent trials. Testosterone was negatively related with frontal and striatal brain response in males, and cerebellar and precuneus response in females. Estradiol was negatively related with fronto-cerebellar, cingulate, and precuneus brain activity in males, and positively related with occipital response in females. To our knowledge, this is the first study reporting the effects of age, sex, and sex steroids during an emotion-cognition task in adolescents. Further research is needed to examine longitudinal development of emotion-cognition interactions and deviations in psychiatric disorders in adolescence. PMID:26175008

  7. Sex differences in stroke: a socioeconomic perspective

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Delbari A

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available Ahmad Delbari,1 Farzane Keyghobadi,2 Yadollah Abolfathi Momtaz,1,3 Fariba Keyghobadi,2 Reza Akbari,2 Houman Kamranian,2 Mohammad Shouride Yazdi,2 Sayed Shahaboddin Tabatabaei,1 Seyed-Mohammad Fereshtehnejad4 1Iranian Research Center on Aging, University of Social Welfare and Rehabilitation Sciences, Tehran, Iran; 2Research Center on Healthy Aging, Sabzevar University of Medical Sciences, Sabzevar, Khorasan, Iran; 3Malaysian Research Institute on Ageing (MyAgeing™, Universiti Putra Malaysia, Serdang, Selangor, Malaysia; 4Department of Neurobiology, Division of Clinical Geriatrics, Care Sciences and Society (NVS, Karolinska Institutet, Stockholm, Sweden Background: A number of studies have explored the issue of sex differences in stroke from biomedical perspective; however, there are still large gaps in the existing knowledge. The purpose of this study was to assess whether the differences in socioeconomic status and living conditions between men and women may explain the part of the sex differences in incidence and outcomes of stroke. Methods: All stroke participants aged ≥60 years admitted in Vaseie Hospital in Sabzevar, Iran, from March 21, 2013, until March 20, 2014, were included in this study. Computerized tomography and magnetic resonance imaging were used to confirm stroke. A series of χ2 tests were performed and Statistical Program for Social Sciences, Version 21.0, was used to investigate the potential differences between older men and women in stroke incidence and outcomes. Results: A total of 159 incident stroke cases were documented during 1 year. The annual rate of stroke was statistically significantly higher in elderly women than in elderly men (401 vs 357 per 100,000; P<0.001. Female elderly participants had significantly lower socioeconomic status, poorer living conditions, and higher lifetime history of depression, hypertension, and diabetes mellitus than their male counterparts. Conclusion: The findings from this study

  8. Sex differences in same-sex direct aggression and sociosexuality: the role of risky impulsivity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cross, Catharine P

    2010-12-23

    Sex differences in same-sex direct aggression and sociosexuality are among the most robust in the literature. The present article evaluated the hypothesis that both can be explained by a sex difference in the willingness to take impulsive risks. Self-report data were gathered from 3,775 respondents (1,514 female) on same-sex aggression, sociosexuality, and risky impulsivity. Risky impulsivity was higher for men than for women (d = .34) and path analysis showed it to be a common cause of same-sex aggression and sociosexuality for both sexes. However, it did not completely mediate the sex differences in same-sex aggression and sociosexuality. The results suggest that same-sex aggression and sociosexual behavior share a common psychological mechanism, but that fully explaining sex differences in aggression requires a more sensitive assay of impulsive risk and a consideration of dyadic processes.

  9. Sex Differences in Same-Sex Direct Aggression and Sociosexuality: The Role of Risky Impulsivity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Catharine P. Cross

    2010-10-01

    Full Text Available Sex differences in same-sex direct aggression and sociosexuality are among the most robust in the literature. The present article evaluated the hypothesis that both can be explained by a sex difference in the willingness to take impulsive risks. Self-report data were gathered from 3,775 respondents (1,514 female on same-sex aggression, sociosexuality, and risky impulsivity. Risky impulsivity was higher for men than for women (d = .34 and path analysis showed it to be a common cause of same-sex aggression and sociosexuality for both sexes. However, it did not completely mediate the sex differences in same-sex aggression and sociosexuality. The results suggest that same-sex aggression and sociosexual behavior share a common psychological mechanism, but that fully explaining sex differences in aggression requires a more sensitive assay of impulsive risk and a consideration of dyadic processes.

  10. Targeting brain tumor cAMP: the case for sex-specific therapeutics

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nicole M Warrington

    2015-07-01

    Full Text Available A relationship between cyclic adenosine 3’, 5’-monophosphate (cAMP levels and brain tumor biology has been evident for nearly as long as cAMP and its synthetase, adenylate cyclase (ADCY have been known. The importance of the pathway in brain tumorigenesis has been demonstrated in vitro and in multiple animal models. Recently, we provided human validation for a cooperating oncogenic role for cAMP in brain tumorigenesis when we found that SNPs in ADCY8 were correlated with glioma (brain tumor risk in individuals with Neurofibromatosis type 1 (NF1. Together, these studies provide a strong rationale for targeting cAMP in brain tumor therapy. However, the cAMP pathway is well known to be sexually dimorphic, and SNPs in ADCY8 affected glioma risk in a sex-specific fashion, elevating the risk for females while protecting males. The cAMP pathway can be targeted at multiple levels in the regulation of its synthesis and degradation. Sex differences in response to drugs that target cAMP regulators indicate that successful targeting of the cAMP pathway for brain tumor patients is likely to require matching specific mechanisms of drug action with patient sex.

  11. Influence of age and sex on quantitative parameters in CT of the brain in neurogeriatric diseases. 2

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ternovoj, S.K.; Damulin, I.V.

    1991-01-01

    The paper is devoted to a study of age and sex differences of linear, volumetric, volumetric longitudinal and densitometric parameters of CT of the brain in patients with neurogeriatric diseases with chronic cerebrovascular insufficiency. The ventricular system of the brain and subarachnoid space was shown to increase with age; a decrease in the relative density of the white substance at the anterior horns was noted. Sex differences were most noticeable in younger patients. Average sizes of the ventricular system and subarachnoid space were indicated for men and women belonging to different age groups. A conclusion was made that assessment of CT results in neurogeriatric patients must include their age and sex

  12. Sex differences in the neural basis of emotional memories.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Canli, Turhan; Desmond, John E; Zhao, Zuo; Gabrieli, John D E

    2002-08-06

    Psychological studies have found better memory in women than men for emotional events, but the neural basis for this difference is unknown. We used event-related functional MRI to assess whether sex differences in memory for emotional stimuli is associated with activation of different neural systems in men and women. Brain activation in 12 men and 12 women was recorded while they rated their experience of emotional arousal in response to neutral and emotionally negative pictures. In a recognition memory test 3 weeks after scanning, highly emotional pictures were remembered best, and remembered better by women than by men. Men and women activated different neural circuits to encode stimuli effectively into memory even when the analysis was restricted to pictures rated equally arousing by both groups. Men activated significantly more structures than women in a network that included the right amygdala, whereas women activated significantly fewer structures in a network that included the left amygdala. Women had significantly more brain regions where activation correlated with both ongoing evaluation of emotional experience and with subsequent memory for the most emotionally arousing pictures. Greater overlap in brain regions sensitive to current emotion and contributing to subsequent memory may be a neural mechanism for emotions to enhance memory more powerfully in women than in men.

  13. Sex work, immigration and social difference

    OpenAIRE

    Ham, Julie

    2017-01-01

    Public discourses around ‘migrant sex workers’ are often more confident about what migrant sex workers signify morally (i.e. vulnerability, criminality) but are less clear about who the ‘migrant’ is. This thesis interrogates the implications of the ‘migrant sex worker’ category based on semi-structured interviews with 65 immigrant, migrant and racialised women in sex work and two support staff in Melbourne, Australia and Vancouver, Canada during 2013–2014. Specifically, I employ an intersecti...

  14. Sex Differences in Assertiveness in College Students

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stebbins, Charles; And Others

    1977-01-01

    Validates the "College Self-Expression Scale." Shows that females are significantly more assertive, and that in one of the criterion situations each sex was significantly more assertive toward members of the same sex than members of the opposite sex. (RL)

  15. Pleasantness, activation, and sex differences in advertising.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Whissell, C; McCall, L

    1997-10-01

    Advertisements in men's, women's, girls', and boys' magazines (n = 38,195 words) were scored objectively in terms of 15 measures of linguistic style, e.g., use of common words, use of long words, use of specific words and emotional tone (pleasantness and activation, as measured by the Dictionary of Affect). There were several sex- and age-related differences among advertisements from different sources. Advertisements from boys' magazines were extremely active, those from women's and girls' magazines were shorter and unusually pleasant. In two follow-up studies (N = 122 volunteers), objective emotional measures of advertising text proved to be related to ratings of persuasion and of success of appeal for individual advertisements. The most preferred advertisement for women was pleasant and active, that for men unpleasant and active. When men and women created advertisements, women's were shorter and more pleasant.

  16. Prevalence, and Intellectual Outcome of Unilateral Focal Cortical Brain Damage as a Function of Age, Sex and Aetiology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    C. M. J. Braun

    2002-01-01

    Full Text Available Neurologists and neuropsychologists are aware that aging men are more at risk than women for brain damage, principally because of the well known male-predominant risk for cardiovascular disease and related cerebrovascular accidents. However, a disproportion in prevalence of brain damage between the sexes in childhood may be less suspected. Furthermore, sex-specific risk for other aetiologies of brain damage may be little known, whether in the pediatric or adult populations. Proposals of a sex difference in cognitive recovery from brain damage have also been controversial. Six hundred and thirty five “consecutive” cases with cortical focal lesions including cases of all ages and both sexes were reviewed. Aetiology of the lesion was determined for each case as was postlesion IQ. Risk was highly male prevalent in all age groups, with a predominance of cardiovascular aetiology explaining much of the adult male prevalence. However, several other aetiological categories were significantly male prevalent in juveniles (mitotic, traumatic, dysplasic and adults (mitotic, traumatic. There was no sex difference in outcome (i.e., postlesion IQ of these cortical brain lesions for the cohort as a whole, after statistical removal of the influence of lesion extent, aetiology and presence of epilepsy. Mechanisms potentially responsible for sex differences in prevalence, aetiology of brain damage, and recovery, are reviewed and discussed.

  17. Developmental neurogenetics and multimodal neuroimaging of sex differences in autism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Christina; Van Horn, John Darrell

    2017-02-01

    Examining sex differences in the brain has been historically contentious but is nonetheless important for advancing mental health for both girls and boys. Unfortunately, females in biomedical research remain underrepresented in most mental health conditions including autism spectrum disorders (ASD), even though equal inclusion of females would improve treatment for girls and yield benefits to boys. This review examines sex differences in the relationship between neuroanatomy and neurogenetics of ASD. Recent findings reveal that girls diagnosed with ASD exhibit more intellectual and behavioral problems compared to their male counterparts, suggesting that girls may be less likely diagnosed in the absence of such problems or that they require a higher mutational load to meet the diagnostic criteria. Thus far, the female biased effect of chromosome 4, 5p15.33, 8p, 9p24.1, 11p12-13, 15q, and Xp22.3 and the male biased effect of 1p31.3, 5q12.3, 7q, 9q33.3, 11q13.4, 13q33.3, 16p11.2, 17q11-21, Xp22.33/Yp11.31, DRD1, NLGN3, MAOA, and SHANK1 deletion have been discovered in ASD. The SNPs of genes such as RYR2, UPP2, and the androgen receptor gene have been shown to have sex-biasing factors in both girls and boys diagnosed with ASD. These sex-related genetic factors may drive sex differences in the neuroanatomy of these girls and boys, including abnormal enlargement in temporal gray and white matter volumes, and atypical reduction in cerebellar gray matter volumes and corpus callosum fibers projecting to the anterior frontal cortex in ASD girls relative to boys. Such factors may also be responsible for the attenuation of brain sexual differentiation in adult men and women with ASD; however, much remains to be uncovered or replicated. Future research should leverage further the association between neuroanatomy and genetics in girls for an integrated and interdisciplinary understanding of ASD.

  18. Sex differences in neural and behavioral signatures of cooperation revealed by fNIRS hyperscanning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baker, Joseph M.; Liu, Ning; Cui, Xu; Vrticka, Pascal; Saggar, Manish; Hosseini, S. M. Hadi; Reiss, Allan L.

    2016-01-01

    Researchers from multiple fields have sought to understand how sex moderates human social behavior. While over 50 years of research has revealed differences in cooperation behavior of males and females, the underlying neural correlates of these sex differences have not been explained. A missing and fundamental element of this puzzle is an understanding of how the sex composition of an interacting dyad influences the brain and behavior during cooperation. Using fNIRS-based hyperscanning in 111 same- and mixed-sex dyads, we identified significant behavioral and neural sex-related differences in association with a computer-based cooperation task. Dyads containing at least one male demonstrated significantly higher behavioral performance than female/female dyads. Individual males and females showed significant activation in the right frontopolar and right inferior prefrontal cortices, although this activation was greater in females compared to males. Female/female dyad’s exhibited significant inter-brain coherence within the right temporal cortex, while significant coherence in male/male dyads occurred in the right inferior prefrontal cortex. Significant coherence was not observed in mixed-sex dyads. Finally, for same-sex dyads only, task-related inter-brain coherence was positively correlated with cooperation task performance. Our results highlight multiple important and previously undetected influences of sex on concurrent neural and behavioral signatures of cooperation. PMID:27270754

  19. Sex differences in the Simon task help to interpret sex differences in selective attention.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stoet, Gijsbert

    2017-05-01

    In the last decade, a number of studies have reported sex differences in selective attention, but a unified explanation for these effects is still missing. This study aims to better understand these differences and put them in an evolutionary psychological context. 418 adult participants performed a computer-based Simon task, in which they responded to the direction of a left or right pointing arrow appearing left or right from a fixation point. Women were more strongly influenced by task-irrelevant spatial information than men (i.e., the Simon effect was larger in women, Cohen's d = 0.39). Further, the analysis of sex differences in behavioral adjustment to errors revealed that women slow down more than men following mistakes (d = 0.53). Based on the combined results of previous studies and the current data, it is proposed that sex differences in selective attention are caused by underlying sex differences in core abilities, such as spatial or verbal cognition.

  20. Millennials sex differences on Snapchat perceived privacy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Antonietta Rauzzino

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available Snapchat offers a distinctive feature from other social networks in that its users control the visibility of the contents they share with others by defining how long these contents may be available. Snapchat is changing the way men and women perceive online information privacy and content management. This paper aims to illustrate the relevance of social representation theory to evaluate perceived privacy in Snapchat users, with a sample of 268 young adults residing in Bogotá. A survey method was employed for data collection purposes. The results reveal that Snapchat users are concerned about their networks’ privacy, with no significant sex differences, although men's perception of Snapchat privacy is safer than that of women. Finally, a discussion is presented as to the limitations and implications of these results for further studies.

  1. Organizing effects of sex steroids on brain aromatase activity in quail.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Charlotte A Cornil

    2011-04-01

    Full Text Available Preoptic/hypothalamic aromatase activity (AA is sexually differentiated in birds and mammals but the mechanisms controlling this sex difference remain unclear. We determined here (1 brain sites where AA is sexually differentiated and (2 whether this sex difference results from organizing effects of estrogens during ontogeny or activating effects of testosterone in adulthood. In the first experiment we measured AA in brain regions micropunched in adult male and female Japanese quail utilizing the novel strategy of basing the microdissections on the distribution of aromatase-immunoreactive cells. The largest sex difference was found in the medial bed nucleus of the stria terminalis (mBST followed by the medial preoptic nucleus (POM and the tuberal hypothalamic region. A second experiment tested the effect of embryonic treatments known to sex-reverse male copulatory behavior (i.e., estradiol benzoate [EB] or the aromatase inhibitor, Vorozole on brain AA in gonadectomized adult males and females chronically treated as adults with testosterone. Embryonic EB demasculinized male copulatory behavior, while vorozole blocked demasculinization of behavior in females as previously demonstrated in birds. Interestingly, these treatments did not affect a measure of appetitive sexual behavior. In parallel, embryonic vorozole increased, while EB decreased AA in pooled POM and mBST, but the same effect was observed in both sexes. Together, these data indicate that the early action of estrogens demasculinizes AA. However, this organizational action of estrogens on AA does not explain the behavioral sex difference in copulatory behavior since AA is similar in testosterone-treated males and females that were or were not exposed to embryonic treatments with estrogens.

  2. Same-Sex and Different-Sex Cohabiting Couple Relationship Stability.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Manning, Wendy D; Brown, Susan L; Stykes, J Bart

    2016-08-01

    Relationship stability is a key indicator of well-being, but most U.S.-based research has been limited to different-sex couples. The 2008 panel of the Survey of Income and Program Participation (SIPP) provides an untapped data resource to analyze relationship stability of same-sex cohabiting, different-sex cohabiting, and different-sex married couples (n = 5,701). The advantages of the SIPP data include the recent, nationally representative, and longitudinal data collection; a large sample of same-sex cohabitors; respondent and partner socioeconomic characteristics; and identification of a state-level indicator of a policy stating that marriage is between one man and one woman (i.e., DOMA). We tested competing hypotheses about the stability of same-sex versus different-sex cohabiting couples that were guided by incomplete institutionalization, minority stress, relationship investments, and couple homogamy perspectives (predicting that same-sex couples would be less stable) as well as economic resources (predicting that same-sex couples would be more stable). In fact, neither expectation was supported: results indicated that same-sex cohabiting couples typically experience levels of stability that are similar to those of different-sex cohabiting couples. We also found evidence of contextual effects: living in a state with a constitutional ban against same-sex marriage was significantly associated with higher levels of instability for same- and different-sex cohabiting couples. The level of stability in both same-sex and different-sex cohabiting couples is not on par with that of different-sex married couples. The findings contribute to a growing literature on health and well-being of same-sex couples and provide a broader understanding of family life.

  3. Contributions of Neuroimaging to Understanding Sex Differences in Cocaine Abuse

    OpenAIRE

    Andersen, ML; Sawyer, EK; Howell, LL

    2011-01-01

    A consistent observation in drug abuse research is that males and females show differences in their response to drugs of abuse. In order to understand the neurobiology underlying cocaine abuse and effective treatments, it is important to consider the role of sex differences. Sex hormones have been investigated in both behavioral and molecular studies, but further evidence addressing drug abuse and dependence in both sexes would expand our knowledge of sex-differences in response to drugs of a...

  4. Sex differences in the Simon task help to interpret sex differences in selective attention

    OpenAIRE

    Stoet, Gijsbert

    2016-01-01

    In the last decade, a number of studies have reported sex differences in selective attention, but a unified explanation for these effects is still missing. This study aims to better understand these differences and put them in an evolutionary psychological context. 418 adult participants performed a computer-based Simon task, in which they responded to the direction of a left or right pointing arrow appearing left or right from a fixation point. Women were more strongly influenced by task-irr...

  5. Sex Differences in the Experience of Widowhood.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barrett, Carol J.

    Previous writers have presumed that widowhood is more stressful for one sex or the other. Hypotheses derived from demographic considerations and sex role developmental theory compared the needs and resources of 147 widows and 42 widowers, relative to 190 married persons. All subjects were non-institutionalized urban residents aged 62 or over. The…

  6. Genetic-gonadal-genitals sex (3G-sex and the misconception of brain and gender, or, why 3G-males and 3G-females have intersex brain and intersex gender

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Joel Daphna

    2012-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract The categorization of individuals as “male” or “female” is based on chromosome complement and gonadal and genital phenotype. This combined genetic-gonadal-genitals sex, here referred to as 3G-sex, is internally consistent in ~99% of humans (i.e., one has either the “female” form at all levels, or the “male” form at all levels. About 1% of the human population is identified as “intersex” because of either having an intermediate form at one or more levels, or having the “male” form at some levels and the “female” form at other levels. These two types of “intersex” reflect the facts, respectively, that the different levels of 3G-sex are not completely dimorphic nor perfectly consistent. Using 3G-sex as a model to understand sex differences in other domains (e.g., brain, behavior leads to the erroneous assumption that sex differences in these other domains are also highly dimorphic and highly consistent. But parallel lines of research have led to the conclusion that sex differences in the brain and in behavior, cognition, personality, and other gender characteristics are for the most part not dimorphic and not internally consistent (i.e., having one brain/gender characteristic with the “male” form is not a reliable predictor for the form of other brain/gender characteristics. Therefore although only ~1% percent of humans are 3G-“intersex”, when it comes to brain and gender, we all have an intersex gender (i.e., an array of masculine and feminine traits and an intersex brain (a mosaic of “male” and “female” brain characteristics.

  7. Genetic-gonadal-genitals sex (3G-sex) and the misconception of brain and gender, or, why 3G-males and 3G-females have intersex brain and intersex gender.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Joel, Daphna

    2012-12-17

    The categorization of individuals as "male" or "female" is based on chromosome complement and gonadal and genital phenotype. This combined genetic-gonadal-genitals sex, here referred to as 3G-sex, is internally consistent in ~99% of humans (i.e., one has either the "female" form at all levels, or the "male" form at all levels). About 1% of the human population is identified as "intersex" because of either having an intermediate form at one or more levels, or having the "male" form at some levels and the "female" form at other levels. These two types of "intersex" reflect the facts, respectively, that the different levels of 3G-sex are not completely dimorphic nor perfectly consistent. Using 3G-sex as a model to understand sex differences in other domains (e.g., brain, behavior) leads to the erroneous assumption that sex differences in these other domains are also highly dimorphic and highly consistent. But parallel lines of research have led to the conclusion that sex differences in the brain and in behavior, cognition, personality, and other gender characteristics are for the most part not dimorphic and not internally consistent (i.e., having one brain/gender characteristic with the "male" form is not a reliable predictor for the form of other brain/gender characteristics). Therefore although only ~1% percent of humans are 3G-"intersex", when it comes to brain and gender, we all have an intersex gender (i.e., an array of masculine and feminine traits) and an intersex brain (a mosaic of "male" and "female" brain characteristics).

  8. Human Performance: Psychological and Physiological Sex Differences (A Selected Bibliography)

    Science.gov (United States)

    1980-02-01

    Sons, 1977. 6 15. Horn, J, L. Human abilities: A review of research and theory in the early 1970’s. Annual Review of Psychology. 1976, 27^, 437...Mother-Infant Interaction, Howard A. Moss. 149. Sex of Parent X Sex of Child: Socioemotional Development, Micheal Lewis and Marsha Weinraub. 165...C. Thomas, 1971. Contents: Biology of Sex Differences. 3. Psychological Sex Differences. 12. Freudian Theory of Feminine Development. 43. The

  9. Sex hormones affect neurotransmitters and shape the adult female brain during hormonal transition periods

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Claudia eBarth

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available Sex hormones have been implicated in neurite outgrowth, synaptogenesis, dendritic branching, myelination and other important mechanisms of neural plasticity. Here we review the evidence from animal experiments and human studies reporting interactions between sex hormones and the dominant neurotransmitters, such as serotonin, dopamine, GABA and glutamate. We provide an overview of accumulating data during physiological and pathological conditions and discuss currently conceptualized theories on how sex hormones potentially trigger neuroplasticity changes through these four neurochemical systems. Many brain regions have been demonstrated to express high densities for estrogen- and progesterone receptors, such as the amygdala, the hypothalamus, and the hippocampus. As the hippocampus is of particular relevance in the context of mediating structural plasticity in the adult brain, we put particular emphasis on what evidence could be gathered thus far that links differences in behavior, neurochemical patterns and hippocampal structure to a changing hormonal environment. Finally, we discuss how physiologically occurring hormonal transition periods in humans can be used to model how changes in sex hormones influence functional connectivity, neurotransmission and brain structure in vivo.

  10. Confidence mediates the sex difference in mental rotation performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Estes, Zachary; Felker, Sydney

    2012-06-01

    On tasks that require the mental rotation of 3-dimensional figures, males typically exhibit higher accuracy than females. Using the most common measure of mental rotation (i.e., the Mental Rotations Test), we investigated whether individual variability in confidence mediates this sex difference in mental rotation performance. In each of four experiments, the sex difference was reliably elicited and eliminated by controlling or manipulating participants' confidence. Specifically, confidence predicted performance within and between sexes (Experiment 1), rendering confidence irrelevant to the task reliably eliminated the sex difference in performance (Experiments 2 and 3), and manipulating confidence significantly affected performance (Experiment 4). Thus, confidence mediates the sex difference in mental rotation performance and hence the sex difference appears to be a difference of performance rather than ability. Results are discussed in relation to other potential mediators and mechanisms, such as gender roles, sex stereotypes, spatial experience, rotation strategies, working memory, and spatial attention.

  11. Fish with thermolabile sex determination (TSD) as models to study brain sex differentiation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blázquez, Mercedes; Somoza, Gustavo M

    2010-05-01

    As fish are ectothermic animals, water temperature can affect their basic biological processes such as larval development, growth and reproduction. Similar to reptiles, the incubation temperature during early phases of development is capable to modify sex ratios in a large number of fish species. This phenomenon, known as thermolabile sex determination (TSD) was first reported in Menidia menidia, a species belonging to the family Atherinopsidae. Since then, an increasing number of fish have also been found to exhibit TSD. Traditionally, likewise in reptiles, several TSD patterns have been described in fish, however it has been recently postulated that only one, females at low temperatures and males at high temperatures, may represent the "real" or "true" TSD. Many studies regarding the influence of temperature on the final sex ratios have been focused on the expression and activity of gonadal aromatase, the enzyme involved in the conversion of androgens into estrogens and encoded by the cyp19a1a gene. In this regard, teleost fish, may be due to a whole genome duplication event, produce another aromatase enzyme, commonly named brain aromatase, encoded by the cyp19a1b gene. Contrary to what has been described in other vertebrates, fish exhibit very high levels of aromatase activity in the brain and therefore they synthesize high amounts of neuroestrogens. However, its biological significance is still not understood. In addition, the mechanism whereby temperature can induce the development of a testis or an ovary still remains elusive. In this context the present review is aimed to discuss several theories about the possible role of brain aromatase using fish as models. The relevance of brain aromatase and therefore of neuroestrogens as the possible cue for gonadal differentiation is raised. In addition, the possible role of brain aromatase as the way to keep the high levels of neurogenesis in fish is also considered. Several key examples of how teleosts and aromatase

  12. Sensorial differences according to sex and ages.

    Science.gov (United States)

    da Silva, L A; Lin, S M; Teixeira, M J; de Siqueira, J T T; Jacob Filho, W; de Siqueira, S R D T

    2014-04-01

    To investigate age and sex differences in orofacial sensory detection. One hundred and twenty-six (126) healthy subjects were divided into five groups according to their ages. They were assessed with a quantitative sensory testing protocol for gustative, olfactory, thermal (cold/warm), mechanical (tactile/vibration/electric), and pain (deep/superficial) detection thresholds. The corneal reflex was also evaluated. Data were analyzed with the one-way ANOVA, chi-squared, Fisher's exact, Mann-Whitney, and Kruskal-Wallis tests. The groups of subjects over 61 years old had higher olfactory (P sweet P = 0.004, salty P = 0.007, sour P = 0.006), thermal (warm P sweet P = 0.020, salty P = 0.002, sour P < 0.001, and bitter P = 0.002), olfactory (P = 0.010), warm (P < 0.001) and deep (P < 0.001), and superficial pain (P = 0.008) detection thresholds than men, and men from all age groups had lower vibratory detection thresholds (P = 0.006) than women. High sensory detection thresholds were observed in subjects over the 6th decade of life, and women had a more accurate sensory perception than men. © 2013 John Wiley & Sons A/S. Published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  13. Why does Jack, and not Jill, break his crown? Sex disparity in brain tumors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sun, Tao; Warrington, Nicole M; Rubin, Joshua B

    2012-01-25

    It is often reported that brain tumors occur more frequently in males, and that males suffer a worse outcome from brain tumors than females. If correct, these observations suggest that sex plays a fundamental role in brain tumor biology. The following review of the literature regarding primary and metastatic brain tumors, reveals that brain tumors do occur more frequently in males compared to females regardless of age, tumor histology, or region of the world. Sexually dimorphic mechanisms that might control tumor cell biology, as well as immune and brain microenvironmental responses to cancer, are explored as the basis for this sex disparity. Elucidating the mechanisms by which sex chromosomes and sex hormones impact on brain tumorigenesis and progression will advance our understanding of basic cancer biology and is likely to be essential for optimizing the care of brain tumor patients.

  14. Why does Jack, and not Jill, break his crown? Sex disparity in brain tumors

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sun Tao

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract It is often reported that brain tumors occur more frequently in males, and that males suffer a worse outcome from brain tumors than females. If correct, these observations suggest that sex plays a fundamental role in brain tumor biology. The following review of the literature regarding primary and metastatic brain tumors, reveals that brain tumors do occur more frequently in males compared to females regardless of age, tumor histology, or region of the world. Sexually dimorphic mechanisms that might control tumor cell biology, as well as immune and brain microenvironmental responses to cancer, are explored as the basis for this sex disparity. Elucidating the mechanisms by which sex chromosomes and sex hormones impact on brain tumorigenesis and progression will advance our understanding of basic cancer biology and is likely to be essential for optimizing the care of brain tumor patients.

  15. Neural Correlates of Sex/Gender Differences in Humor Processing for Different Joke Types.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chan, Yu-Chen

    2016-01-01

    Humor operates through a variety of techniques, which first generate surprise and then amusement and laughter once the unexpected incongruity is resolved. As different types of jokes use different techniques, the corresponding humor processes also differ. The present study builds on the framework of the 'tri-component theory of humor,' which details the mechanisms involved in cognition (comprehension), affect (appreciation), and laughter (expression). This study seeks to identify differences among joke types and between sexes/genders in the neural mechanisms underlying humor processing. Three types of verbal jokes, bridging-inference jokes (BJs), exaggeration jokes (EJs), and ambiguity jokes (AJs), were used as stimuli. The findings revealed differences in brain activity for an interaction between sex/gender and joke type. For BJs, women displayed greater activation in the temporoparietal-mesocortical-motor network than men, demonstrating the importance of the temporoparietal junction (TPJ) presumably for 'theory of mind' processing, the orbitofrontal cortex for motivational functions and reward coding, and the supplementary motor area for laughter. Women also showed greater activation than men in the frontal-mesolimbic network associated with EJs, including the anterior (frontopolar) prefrontal cortex (aPFC, BA 10) for executive control processes, and the amygdala and midbrain for reward anticipation and salience processes. Conversely, AJs elicited greater activation in men than women in the frontal-paralimbic network, including the dorsal prefrontal cortex (dPFC) and parahippocampal gyrus. All joke types elicited greater activation in the aPFC of women than of men, whereas men showed greater activation than women in the dPFC. To confirm the findings related to sex/gender differences, random group analysis and within group variance analysis were also performed. These findings help further establish the mechanisms underlying the processing of different joke types

  16. Neural Correlates of Sex/Gender Differences in Humor Processing for Different Joke Types

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yu-Chen eChan

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available Humor operates through a variety of techniques, which first generate surprise and then amusement and laughter once the unexpected incongruity is resolved. As different types of jokes use different techniques, the corresponding humor processes also differ. The present study builds on the framework of the ‘tri-component theory of humor’, which details the mechanisms involved in cognition (comprehension, affect (appreciation, and laughter (expression. This study seeks to identify differences among joke types and between sexes/genders in the neural mechanisms underlying humor processing. Three types of verbal jokes, bridging-inference jokes (BJs, exaggeration jokes (EJs, and ambiguity jokes (AJs, were used as stimuli. The findings revealed differences in brain activity for an interaction between sex/gender and joke type. For BJs, women displayed greater activation in the temporoparietal-mesocortical-motor network than men, demonstrating the importance of the temporoparietal junction (TPJ presumably for ‘theory of mind’ processing, the orbitofrontal cortex for motivational functions and reward coding, and the supplementary motor area for laughter. Women also showed greater activation than men in the frontal-mesolimbic network associated with EJs, including the anterior (frontopolar prefrontal cortex (aPFC, BA 10 for executive control processes, and the amygdala and midbrain for reward anticipation and salience processes. Conversely, AJs elicited greater activation in men than women in the frontal-paralimbic network, including the dorsal prefrontal cortex (dPFC and parahippocampal gyrus. All joke types elicited greater activation in the aPFC of women than of men, whereas men showed greater activation than women in the dPFC. To confirm the findings related to sex/gender differences, random group analysis and within group variance analysis were also performed. These findings help further establish the mechanisms underlying the processing of

  17. Sex differences in the psychopharmacological treatment of depression.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sramek, John J; Murphy, Michael F; Cutler, Neal R

    2016-12-01

    Although a number of studies have observed that females respond better to serotonergic antidepressants than males and that postmenopausal females have a diminished response to antidepressants compared with younger females, there are also studies that conflict with both of these findings, making any generalizations regarding sex differences difficult to make. Sex variance in antidepressant efficacy and pharmacokinetics profiles have been attributed to sex-based physiological differences, behavioral differences, related disorders, and sex-specific conditions, including pregnancy and menopause. This paper will review the history and current research on sex effects of antidepressant treatment.

  18. Sex Differences in Trajectories of Offending among Puerto Rican Youth

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jennings, Wesley G.; Maldonado-Molina, Mildred M.; Piquero, Alex R.; Odgers, Candice L.; Bird, Hector; Canino, Glorisa

    2010-01-01

    Although sex is one of the strongest correlates of crime, contentions remain regarding the necessity of sex-specific theories of crime. The current study examines delinquent trajectories across sex among Puerto Rican youth socialized in two different cultural contexts (Bronx, United States; and San Juan, Puerto Rico). Results indicate similar…

  19. Sex differences in effective fronto-limbic connectivity during negative emotion processing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lungu, Ovidiu; Potvin, Stéphane; Tikàsz, Andràs; Mendrek, Adrianna

    2015-12-01

    In view of the greater prevalence of depression and anxiety disorders in women than in men, functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) studies have examined sex-differences in brain activations during emotion processing. Comparatively, sex-differences in brain connectivity received little attention, despite evidence for important fronto-limbic connections during emotion processing across sexes. Here, we investigated sex-differences in fronto-limbic connectivity during negative emotion processing. Forty-six healthy individuals (25 women, 21 men) viewed negative, positive and neutral images during an fMRI session. Effective connectivity between significantly activated regions was examined using Granger causality and psychophysical interaction analyses. Sex steroid hormones and feminine-masculine traits were also measured. Subjective ratings of negative emotional images were higher in women than in men. Across sexes, significant activations were observed in the dorso-medial prefrontal cortex (dmPFC) and the right amygdala. Granger connectivity from right amygdala was significantly greater than that from dmPFC during the 'high negative' condition, an effect driven by men. Magnitude of this effect correlated negatively with highly negative image ratings and feminine traits and positively with testosterone levels. These results highlight critical sex differences in brain connectivity during negative emotion processing and point to the fact that both biological (sex steroid hormones) and psychosocial (gender role and identity) variables contribute to them. As the dmPFC is involved in social cognition and action planning, and the amygdala-in threat detection, the connectivity results suggest that compared to women, men have a more evaluative, rather than purely affective, brain response during negative emotion processing. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  20. Aging and sex influence the permeability of the blood-brain barrier in the rat

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Saija, A.; Princi, P.; D'Amico, N.; De Pasquale, R.; Costa, G.

    1990-01-01

    The aim of the present study was to investigate the existence of aging- and sex-related alterations in the permeability of the blood-brain barrier (BBB) in the rat, by calculating a unidirectional blood-to-brain transfer constant (Ki) for the circulating tracer [ 14 C]-α-aminoisobutyric acid. The authors observed that: (a) the permeability of the BBB significantly increased within the frontal and temporo-parietal cortex, hypothalamus and cerebellum in 28-30 week old rats, in comparison with younger animals; (b) in several brain areas of female intact rats higher Ki values (even though not significantly different) were calculated at oestrus than at proestrus; (c) in 1-week ovariectomized rats there was a marked increase of Ki values at the level of the frontal, temporo-parietal and occipital cortex, cerebellum and brain-stem. One can speculate that aging and sex-related alterations in thee permeability of the BBB reflect respectively changes in brain neurochemical system activity and in plasma steroid hormone levels

  1. Genes, Environments, and Sex Differences in Alcohol Research.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Salvatore, Jessica E; Cho, Seung Bin; Dick, Danielle M

    2017-07-01

    The study of sex differences has been identified as one way to enhance scientific reproducibility, and the National Institutes of Health (NIH) have implemented a new policy to encourage the explicit examination of sex differences. Our goal here is to address sex differences in behavioral genetic research on alcohol outcomes. We review sex differences for alcohol outcomes and whether the source and magnitude of genetic influences on alcohol consumption and alcohol use disorder (AUD) are the same across sexes; describe common research designs for studying sex-specific gene-by-environment interaction (G × E) effects; and discuss the role of statistical power and theory when testing sex-specific genetic effects. There are robust sex differences for many alcohol outcomes. The weight of evidence suggests that the source and magnitude of genetic influences on alcohol consumption and AUD are the same across sexes. Whether there are sex-specific G × E effects has received less attention to date. The new NIH policy necessitates a systematic approach for studying sex-specific genetic effects in alcohol research. Researchers are encouraged to report power for tests of these effects and to use theory to develop testable hypotheses, especially for studies of G × E.

  2. Serial Comparison Processes and Sex Differences in Clerical Speed.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Majeres, Raymond L.

    1988-01-01

    Three experiments were conducted with 91 male and 91 female university students to assess sex differences in performance on speeded matching tests and theory on same-different judgments. Results are interpreted via the dual-process hypothesis of same-difference judgments with sex differences explained in terms of serial comparison processes rather…

  3. Sex Differences in Jealousy in Response to Actual Infidelity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    John E. Edlund

    2006-01-01

    Full Text Available The present studies address two criticisms of the theory of evolved sex differences in jealousy: (a that the sex difference in jealousy emerges only in response to hypothetical infidelity scenarios, and (b that the sex difference emerges only using forced-choice measures. In two separate studies, one a paper-and-pencil survey with a student sample and the other a web-based survey targeting a non-student sample, men and women showed significant sex differences in jealousy in response to actual infidelity experiences; men experienced more jealousy in response to the sexual aspects of an actual infidelity, whereas women experienced more jealousy in response to the emotional aspects of the infidelity. Sex differences emerged using both continuous measures of jealousy as well as the traditional forced-choice measure. Overall, our results demonstrate that sex differences in jealousy are not limited to responses to hypothetical infidelity scenarios; they also emerge in response to actual infidelity experiences.

  4. Differences in Religiousness in Opposite-Sex and Same-Sex Twins in a Secular Society

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Juel Ahrenfeldt, Linda; Lindahl-Jacobsen, Rune; Möller, Sören

    2016-01-01

    (RCOPE) for the assessment of positive and negative religious coping patterns. Differences between OS and SS twins were investigated using logistic regression for each sex. The analyses were adjusted for dependence within twin pairs. No significant differences in religiousness and religious coping were......Sex differences in religion are well known, with females generally being more religious than males, and shared environmental factors have been suggested to have a large influence on religiousness. Twins from opposite-sex (OS) and same-sex (SS) pairs may differ because of a dissimilar psycho...

  5. Using RNA-seq to determine patterns of sex-bias in gene expression in the brain of the sex-role reversed Gulf Pipefish (Syngnathus scovelli).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beal, Andria P; Martin, F Douglas; Hale, Matthew C

    2018-02-01

    Sex-bias in gene expression is a widespread mechanism for controlling the development of phenotypes that differ between males and females. Most studies on sex-bias in gene expression have focused on species that exhibit traditional sex-roles (male-male competition and female parental care). By contrast the Syngnathid fishes (sea horses, pipefish, and sea dragons) are a group of organisms where many species exhibit male brooding and sex-role reversal (female-female competition for mates and paternal parental care), and little is known about how patterns of sex-bias in gene expression vary in species with sex-role reversal. Here we utilize RNA-seq technology to investigate patterns of sex-bias in gene expression in the brain tissue of the Gulf Pipefish (Syngnathus scovelli) a species that exhibits sex-role reversal. Gene expression analysis identified 73 sex-biased genes, 26 genes upregulated in females and 47 genes upregulated in males. Gene ontology analysis found 52 terms enriched for the sex-biased genes in a wide range of pathways suggesting that multiple functions and processes differ between the sexes. We focused on two areas of interest: sex steroids/hormones and circadian rhythms, both of which exhibited sex-bias in gene expression, and are known to influence sexual development in other species. Lastly, the work presented herein contributes to a growing body of genome data available for the Syngnathids, increasing our knowledge on patterns of gene expression in these unusual fishes. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  6. Sex differences in visual attention to erotic and non-erotic stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lykins, Amy D; Meana, Marta; Strauss, Gregory P

    2008-04-01

    It has been suggested that sex differences in the processing of erotic material (e.g., memory, genital arousal, brain activation patterns) may also be reflected by differential attention to visual cues in erotic material. To test this hypothesis, we presented 20 heterosexual men and 20 heterosexual women with erotic and non-erotic images of heterosexual couples and tracked their eye movements during scene presentation. Results supported previous findings that erotic and non-erotic information was visually processed in a different manner by both men and women. Men looked at opposite sex figures significantly longer than did women, and women looked at same sex figures significantly longer than did men. Within-sex analyses suggested that men had a strong visual attention preference for opposite sex figures as compared to same sex figures, whereas women appeared to disperse their attention evenly between opposite and same sex figures. These differences, however, were not limited to erotic images but evidenced in non-erotic images as well. No significant sex differences were found for attention to the contextual region of the scenes. Results were interpreted as potentially supportive of recent studies showing a greater non-specificity of sexual arousal in women. This interpretation assumes there is an erotic valence to images of the sex to which one orients, even when the image is not explicitly erotic. It also assumes a relationship between visual attention and erotic valence.

  7. Sex differences in mortality by ethnic background

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Oksuzyan, Anna; Drefahl, Sven; Jacobsen, Rune

    migrant effect and predominantly male migration from non-Western countries to Denmark and Sweden in 1960-70s, as well as high fertility in their female spouses, we expect to find even smaller sex differential mortality among migrants than in the ethnic Danish and Swedish populations. We use high...

  8. Sex Differences in College Student Drug Use

    Science.gov (United States)

    Strimbu, Jerry L.; And Others

    1973-01-01

    Determines patterns of drug usage and related behavior of college, university, and junior college students on a state-wide basis. This article focuses on sex as it relates to the total pattern of drug abuse of nine specific substances among a large group of college students and examines results in terms of both practical and statistical…

  9. Monozygotic twins of different apparent sex

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Yokota, Yukifumi; Fujino, Nobuyuki; Sato, Yoshiaki; Matsunobu, Akira; Tadokoro, Mamoru [Sagamihara Kyodo Hospital (Japan); Akane, Atsushi [Kansai Medical College, Osaka (Japan); Matsuura, Nobuo; Maeda, Tohru [Kitasato Univ. (Japan); Nakahori, Yutaka; Nakagome, Yasuo [Univ. of Tokyo (Japan)

    1994-10-15

    We report on twins of unlike sex who shared a 45,X/46,X, +mar karyotype. The mar chromosome was found to be Yq- by DNA analysis. Marker studies, including 8 VNTR loci, yielded a probability of monozygosity of 0.99999996. 16 refs., 1 fig., 1 tab.

  10. Sex differences in stress-related psychiatric disorders: neurobiological perspectives.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bangasser, Debra A; Valentino, Rita J

    2014-08-01

    Stress is associated with the onset and severity of several psychiatric disorders that occur more frequently in women than men, including posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and depression. Patients with these disorders present with dysregulation of several stress response systems, including the neuroendocrine response to stress, corticolimbic responses to negatively valenced stimuli, and hyperarousal. Thus, sex differences within their underlying circuitry may explain sex biases in disease prevalence. This review describes clinical studies that identify sex differences within the activity of these circuits, as well as preclinical studies that demonstrate cellular and molecular sex differences in stress responses systems. These studies reveal sex differences from the molecular to the systems level that increase endocrine, emotional, and arousal responses to stress in females. Exploring these sex differences is critical because this research can reveal the neurobiological underpinnings of vulnerability to stress-related psychiatric disorders and guide the development of novel pharmacotherapies. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  11. Sex differences in jealousy: evolutionary mechanism or artifact of measurement?

    Science.gov (United States)

    DeSteno, David; Bartlett, Monica Y; Braverman, Julia; Salovey, Peter

    2002-11-01

    Two studies are presented that challenge the evidentiary basis for the existence of evolved sex differences in jealousy. In opposition to the evolutionary view, Study I demonstrated that a sex difference in jealousy resulting from sexual versus emotional infidelity is observed only when judgments are recorded using a forced-choice response format. On all other measures, no sex differences were found; both men and women reported greater jealousy in response to sexual infidelity. A second study revealed that the sex difference on the forced-choice measure disappeared under conditions of cognitive constraint. These findings suggest that the sex difference used to support the evolutionary view of jealousy (e.g., D. M. Buss, R. Larsen, D. Westen, & J. Semmelroth, 1992; D. M. Buss et al., 1999) likely represents a measurement artifact resulting from a format-induced effortful decision strategy and not an automatic, sex-specific response shaped by evolution.

  12. Sex Differences in Jealousy in Response to Actual Infidelity

    OpenAIRE

    John E. Edlund; Jeremy D. Heider; Cory R. Scherer; Maria-Magdalena Farc; Brad J. Sagarin

    2006-01-01

    The present studies address two criticisms of the theory of evolved sex differences in jealousy: (a) that the sex difference in jealousy emerges only in response to hypothetical infidelity scenarios, and (b) that the sex difference emerges only using forced-choice measures. In two separate studies, one a paper-and-pencil survey with a student sample and the other a web-based survey targeting a non-student sample, men and women showed significant sex differences in jealousy in response to actu...

  13. Gender differences in brain networks supporting empathy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schulte-Rüther, Martin; Markowitsch, Hans J; Shah, N Jon; Fink, Gereon R; Piefke, Martina

    2008-08-01

    Females frequently score higher on standard tests of empathy, social sensitivity, and emotion recognition than do males. It remains to be clarified, however, whether these gender differences are associated with gender specific neural mechanisms of emotional social cognition. We investigated gender differences in an emotion attribution task using functional magnetic resonance imaging. Subjects either focused on their own emotional response to emotion expressing faces (SELF-task) or evaluated the emotional state expressed by the faces (OTHER-task). Behaviorally, females rated SELF-related emotions significantly stronger than males. Across the sexes, SELF- and OTHER-related processing of facial expressions activated a network of medial and lateral prefrontal, temporal, and parietal brain regions involved in emotional perspective taking. During SELF-related processing, females recruited the right inferior frontal cortex and superior temporal sulcus stronger than males. In contrast, there was increased neural activity in the left temporoparietal junction in males (relative to females). When performing the OTHER-task, females showed increased activation of the right inferior frontal cortex while there were no differential activations in males. The data suggest that females recruit areas containing mirror neurons to a higher degree than males during both SELF- and OTHER-related processing in empathic face-to-face interactions. This may underlie facilitated emotional "contagion" in females. Together with the observation that males differentially rely on the left temporoparietal junction (an area mediating the distinction between the SELF and OTHERS) the data suggest that females and males rely on different strategies when assessing their own emotions in response to other people.

  14. Sex differences in depression after widowhood. Do men suffer more?

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van Grootheest, D.S.; Beekman, A.T.F.; Broese Van Groenou, M.I.; Deeg, D.J.H.

    1999-01-01

    Background: This study focuses on sex differences in depression of the widowed. Previous research showed different results in sex differences and in depression after bereavement. We assessed the effects of widowhood on depressive symptoms for men and women and examined whether environmental strain

  15. Sex Differences in Cerebral Laterality of Language and Visuospatial Processing

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clements, A. M.; Rimrodt, S. L.; Abel, J. R.; Blankner, J. G.; Mostofsky, S. H.; Pekar, J. J.; Denckla, M. B.; Cutting, L. E.

    2006-01-01

    Sex differences on language and visuospatial tasks are of great interest, with differences in hemispheric laterality hypothesized to exist between males and females. Some functional imaging studies examining sex differences have shown that males are more left lateralized on language tasks and females are more right lateralized on visuospatial…

  16. Sex-related differences in amygdala functional connectivity during resting conditions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kilpatrick, L A; Zald, D H; Pardo, J V; Cahill, L F

    2006-04-01

    Recent neuroimaging studies have established a sex-related hemispheric lateralization of amygdala involvement in memory for emotionally arousing material. Here, we examine the possibility that sex-related differences in amygdala involvement in memory for emotional material develop from differential patterns of amygdala functional connectivity evident in the resting brain. Seed voxel partial least square analyses of regional cerebral blood flow data revealed significant sex-related differences in amygdala functional connectivity during resting conditions. The right amygdala was associated with greater functional connectivity in men than in women. In contrast, the left amygdala was associated with greater functional connectivity in women than in men. Furthermore, the regions displaying stronger functional connectivity with the right amygdala in males (sensorimotor cortex, striatum, pulvinar) differed from those displaying stronger functional connectivity with the left amygdala in females (subgenual cortex, hypothalamus). These differences in functional connectivity at rest may link to sex-related differences in medical and psychiatric disorders.

  17. Childhood Adversity, Daily Stress, and Marital Strain in Same-Sex and Different-Sex Marriages

    Science.gov (United States)

    Donnelly, Rachel; Umberson, Debra; Kroeger, Rhiannon A.

    2017-01-01

    Childhood adversity has enduring consequences for individuals throughout life, including increased reactivity to stress that may contribute to marital strain in adulthood. Past research on gendered experiences of heterosexual spouses raises questions about how the influence of childhood adversity might differ for men and women in same-sex marriages. We analyze dyadic diary data from 756 individuals in 106 male same-sex, 157 female same-sex, and 115 different-sex marriages to consider how childhood adversity moderates the association between daily stress and marital strain. Results suggest that the negative consequences of daily stress for marital strain are amplified by past childhood adversity with variation for men and women in same- and different-sex unions, such that women and those in same-sex marriages may experience some protection from the adverse consequences of childhood adversity.

  18. Sex differences in Hadza eating frequency by food type.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Berbesque, J Colette; Marlowe, Frank W; Crittenden, Alyssa N

    2011-01-01

    We investigate sex differences in frequencies of adults eating in a foraging population-the Hadza of Tanzania. We use eating frequency data from instantaneous scan observations of the Hadza, to see to how much sharing of foods taken back to camp compensates for the targeting of different foods by each sex while out foraging. Eating in camp differs by sex in terms of overall eating frequency, as well as in terms of diet composition (frequencies of eating each food type). We also control for sex-differences in time spent in camp and still find sex-differences in eating frequencies-women are observed eating significantly more frequently than men. There are also sex-differences in the eating frequencies of particular food types both with and without controlling for presence in camp. Finally, we use data on acquisition of each food type by sex and find that both sexes are more frequently observed eating women's foods in camp than men's foods. At least in the case of the Hadza, we see pronounced sex differences in the in-camp diet. Hadza men are eating a higher quality diet than are women, but women are able to eat far more frequently, and spend less time foraging than men. It is not yet clear whether a regular caloric intake of lower quality foods would be more beneficial for maintaining fecundity than a more variable diet consisting of higher quality foods. Copyright © 2011 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

  19. Sex-related differences in outcomes after hallux valgus surgery.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Choi, Gi Won; Kim, Hak Jun; Kim, Tae Wan; Lee, Ji Wun; Park, Sung Bum; Kim, Jin Kak

    2015-03-01

    With differences between the sexes in foot bone anatomy and ligamentous laxity, there is the possibility that the results of hallux valgus surgery may also differ between the sexes. We aimed to compare the results of hallux valgus surgery between the sexes. The authors retrospectively reviewed 60 males (66 feet) and 70 females (82 feet) who underwent distal or proximal chevron osteotomy for the treatment of hallux valgus deformity between June 2005 and December 2011. We compared the clinical and radiologic outcomes between the sexes. There were no statistically significant differences in demographics between the sexes. The mean American Orthopedic Foot and Ankle Society score, visual analogue scale for pain, and patient satisfaction at the last follow-up did not differ significantly between the sexes. The mean preoperative hallux valgus angle (HVA) and inter-metatarsal angle (IMA) were not significantly different between the sexes. At the last follow-up, the mean HVA was significantly greater in females (p=0.003) than in males; mean IMA was not significantly different between the sexes. The mean correction of HVA in males was significantly greater than that in females (p=0.014). There were no significant differences between the sexes regarding clinical outcomes after distal and proximal chevron osteotomy. However, male patients achieved greater correction of HVA than female patients. There is a possibility that sexual dimorphism of the foot may affect postoperative HVA.

  20. Age-Related Sex Differences in Language Lateralization: A Magnetoencephalography Study in Children

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yu, Vickie Y.; MacDonald, Matt J.; Oh, Anna; Hua, Gordon N.; De Nil, Luc F.; Pang, Elizabeth W.

    2014-01-01

    It is well supported by behavioral and neuroimaging studies that typical language function is lateralized to the left hemisphere in the adult brain and this laterality is less well defined in children. The behavioral literature suggests there maybe be sex differences in language development, but this has not been examined systematically with…

  1. Developmental Sex Differences in the Relation of Neuroanatomical Connectivity to Intelligence

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schmithorst, Vincent J.

    2009-01-01

    Recent neuroimaging research has shown sex-related differences in the relationship between brain structure and cognitive function. Anatomical studies have shown a greater reliance for cognitive function on white matter structure in adult females, and a greater reliance on gray matter structure in adult males. Functional neuroimaging studies have…

  2. Examining sex and gender differences in anxiety disorders

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Christiansen, Dorte Mølgaard

    2015-01-01

    provides an overview of research on sex and gender differences in anxiety disorders ranging from the well-established female preponderance in prevalence and severity to possible sex differences in the risk and protective factors associated with anxiety, sex differences in the clinical presentation......Several studies have examined sex differences in different anxiety disorders. Females are repeatedly found to be more likely than males to suffer from anxiety in general and to be diagnosed with most anxiety disorders, including agoraphobia (AG), panic disorder (PD), separation anxiety (SA...... of anxiety disorders, and potential sex differences in the effectiveness of different treatments. The chapter contains suggestions for future research, including important questions that remain to be answered....

  3. Why does Jack, and not Jill, break his crown? Sex disparity in brain tumors

    OpenAIRE

    Sun, Tao; Warrington, Nicole M; Rubin, Joshua B

    2012-01-01

    Abstract It is often reported that brain tumors occur more frequently in males, and that males suffer a worse outcome from brain tumors than females. If correct, these observations suggest that sex plays a fundamental role in brain tumor biology. The following review of the literature regarding primary and metastatic brain tumors, reveals that brain tumors do occur more frequently in males compared to females regardless of age, tumor histology, or region of the world. Sexually dimorphic mecha...

  4. The Sex Difference in Depression across 29 Countries

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hopcroft, Rosemary L.; Bradley, Dana Burr

    2007-01-01

    The sex difference in depression is well documented in westernized, developed societies, although there has been little quantitative cross-cultural research on the topic. In this study, we use multilevel logit models to examine sex differences in depression across 29 countries using data from the World Values Survey. We find that in no country are…

  5. Absenteeism, Burnout and Symptomatology of Teacher Stress: Sex Differences

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bermejo-Toro, Laura; Prieto-Ursúa, María

    2014-01-01

    Although numerous studies have been carried out confirming high levels in symptomatology of stress and depression in the teaching profession, research focusing on sex differences in these problems has been both scarce and inconclusive. The aim of this study is to analyse differences with regards to sex in the incidence of absenteeism, work-related…

  6. Sex Differences in the Longitudinal Prediction of Adult Personality.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sutton-Smith, B.; Rosenberg, B. G.

    This paper deals with two sets of data-one that fails to find any long-term sex differences in adults, and another which seems to find such differences. The Berkeley Guidance Study offers longitudinal data in which no variables differentiate between the two sexes at all age levels. From these results, the authors conclude that the normal course of…

  7. Sex differences in serum lidid levels in nigerian patients with ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Background. The incidence of Nephrotic syndrome (NS) in Nigeria population remain undetermined. The sex differences in changes in lipoprotein levels in. NS. are not well defined. This study examines the sex differences in lipoprotein levels among Nigerian patients with the N.S.. Methods Of 79 patients seen ...

  8. Sex differences in impulsive action and impulsive choice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weafer, Jessica; de Wit, Harriet

    2014-11-01

    Here, we review the evidence for sex differences in behavioral measures of impulsivity for both humans and laboratory animals. We focus on two specific components of impulsivity: impulsive action (i.e., difficulty inhibiting a prepotent response) and impulsive choice (i.e., difficulty delaying gratification). Sex differences appear to exist on these measures, but the direction and magnitude of the differences vary. In laboratory animals, impulsive action is typically greater in males than females, whereas impulsive choice is typically greater in females. In humans, women discount more steeply than men, but sex differences on measures of impulsive action depend on tasks and subject samples. We discuss implications of these findings as they relate to drug addiction. We also point out the major gaps in this research to date, including the lack of studies designed specifically to examine sex differences in behavioral impulsivity, and the lack of consideration of menstrual or estrous phase or sex hormone levels in the studies. © 2013.

  9. Early adverse life events are associated with altered brain network architecture in a sex- dependent manner

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Arpana Gupta, PhD

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available Introduction: Early adverse life events (EALs increase the risk for chronic medical and psychiatric disorders by altering early neurodevelopment. The aim of this study was to examine associations between EALs and network properties of core brain regions in the emotion regulation and salience networks, and to test the influence of sex on these associations. Methods: Resting-state functional and diffusion tensor magnetic resonance imaging were obtained in healthy individuals (61 men, 63 women. Functional and anatomical network properties of centrality and segregation were calculated for the core regions of the two networks using graph theory. Moderator analyses were applied to test hypotheses. Results: The type of adversity experienced influences brain wiring differently, as higher general EALs were associated with decreased functional and anatomical centrality in salience and emotion regulation regions, while physical and emotional EALs were associated with increased anatomical centrality and segregation in emotion regulation regions. Sex moderated the associations between EALs and measures of centrality; with decreased centrality of salience and emotion regulation regions with increased general EALs in females, and increased centrality in salience regions with higher physical and emotional EALs in males. Increased segregation of salience regions was associated with increased general EALs in males. Centrality of the amygdala was associated with physical symptoms, and segregation of salience regions was correlated with higher somatization in men only. Conclusions: Emotion regulation and salience regions are susceptible to topological brain restructuring associated with EALs. The male and female brains appear to be differently affected by specific types of EALs. Keywords: Early adverse traumatic life events, Centrality, Segregation, Network metrics, Moderating effects of sex, Emotion regulation network, Salience network

  10. The politics of plasticity: Sex and gender in the 21st century brain

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kleinherenbrink, A.V.

    2016-01-01

    The Politics of Plasticity examines how sex and gender are imag(in)ed in the 21st century brain. At the beginning of this century, the idea that the brain is plastic (i.e. that its structure and function change throughout life) began to replace the idea that adult brains are fixed. The claim that

  11. Support for the microgenderome invites enquiry into sex differences

    OpenAIRE

    Wallis, Amy; Butt, Henry; Ball, Michelle; Lewis, Donald P.; Bruck, Dorothy

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT The microgenderome defines the interaction between microbiota, sex hormones and the immune system. Our recent research inferred support for the microgenderome by showing sex differences in microbiota-symptom associations in a clinical sample of patients with myalgic encephalomyelitis / chronic fatigue syndrome (ME/CFS). This addendum expands upon the sex-specific pattern of associations that were observed. Interpretations are hypothesized in relation to genera versus species-level an...

  12. Sex differences in the neural substrates of spatial working memory during adolescence are not mediated by endogenous testosterone.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alarcón, Gabriela; Cservenka, Anita; Fair, Damien A; Nagel, Bonnie J

    2014-12-17

    Adolescence is a developmental period characterized by notable changes in behavior, physical attributes, and an increase in endogenous sex steroid hormones, which may impact cognitive functioning. Moreover, sex differences in brain structure are present, leading to differences in neural function and cognition. Here, we examine sex differences in performance and blood oxygen level-dependent (BOLD) activation in a sample of adolescents during a spatial working memory (SWM) task. We also examine whether endogenous testosterone levels mediate differential brain activity between the sexes. Adolescents between ages 10 and 16 years completed a SWM functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) task, and serum hormone levels were assessed within seven days of scanning. While there were no sex differences in task performance (accuracy and reaction time), differences in BOLD response between girls and boys emerged, with girls deactivating brain regions in the default mode network and boys showing increased response in SWM-related brain regions of the frontal cortex. These results suggest that adolescent boys and girls adopted distinct neural strategies, while maintaining spatial cognitive strategies that facilitated comparable cognitive performance of a SWM task. A nonparametric bootstrapping procedure revealed that testosterone did not mediate sex-specific brain activity, suggesting that sex differences in BOLD activation during SWM may be better explained by other factors, such as early organizational effects of sex steroids or environmental influences. Elucidating sex differences in neural function and the influence of gonadal hormones can serve as a basis of comparison for understanding sexually dimorphic neurodevelopment and inform sex-specific psychopathology that emerges in adolescence. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  13. Sex Differences in Psychiatric Disease: A Focus on the Glutamate System

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Megan M. Wickens

    2018-06-01

    Full Text Available Alterations in glutamate, the primary excitatory neurotransmitter in the brain, are implicated in several psychiatric diseases. Many of these psychiatric diseases display epidemiological sex differences, with either males or females exhibiting different symptoms or disease prevalence. However, little work has considered the interaction of disrupted glutamatergic transmission and sex on disease states. This review describes the clinical and preclinical evidence for these sex differences with a focus on two conditions that are more prevalent in women: Alzheimer's disease and major depressive disorder, and three conditions that are more prevalent in men: schizophrenia, autism spectrum disorder, and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. These studies reveal sex differences at multiple levels in the glutamate system including metabolic markers, receptor levels, genetic interactions, and therapeutic responses to glutamatergic drugs. Our survey of the current literature revealed a considerable need for more evaluations of sex differences in future studies examining the role of the glutamate system in psychiatric disease. Gaining a more thorough understanding of how sex differences in the glutamate system contribute to psychiatric disease could provide novel avenues for the development of sex-specific pharmacotherapies.

  14. Sex differences in the locus coeruleus-norepinephrine system and its regulation by stress.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bangasser, Debra A; Wiersielis, Kimberly R; Khantsis, Sabina

    2016-06-15

    Women are more likely than men to suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and major depression. In addition to their sex bias, these disorders share stress as an etiological factor and hyperarousal as a symptom. Thus, sex differences in brain arousal systems and their regulation by stress could help explain increased vulnerability to these disorders in women. Here we review preclinical studies that have identified sex differences in the locus coeruleus (LC)-norepinephrine (NE) arousal system. First, we detail how structural sex differences in the LC can bias females towards increased arousal in response to emotional events. Second, we highlight studies demonstrating that estrogen can increase NE in LC target regions by enhancing the capacity for NE synthesis, while reducing NE degradation, potentially increasing arousal in females. Third, we review data revealing how sex differences in the stress receptor, corticotropin releasing factor 1 (CRF1), can increase LC neuronal sensitivity to CRF in females compared to males. This effect could translate into hyperarousal in women under conditions of CRF hypersecretion that occur in PTSD and depression. The implications of these sex differences for the treatment of stress-related psychiatric disorders are discussed. Moreover, the value of using information regarding biological sex differences to aid in the development of novel pharmacotherapies to better treat men and women with PTSD and depression is also highlighted. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled SI: Noradrenergic System. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  15. Considering sex differences clarifies the effects of depression on facial emotion processing during fMRI.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jenkins, L M; Kendall, A D; Kassel, M T; Patrón, V G; Gowins, J R; Dion, C; Shankman, S A; Weisenbach, S L; Maki, P; Langenecker, S A

    2018-01-01

    Sex differences in emotion processing may play a role in women's increased risk for Major Depressive Disorder (MDD). However, studies of sex differences in brain mechanisms involved in emotion processing in MDD (or interactions of sex and diagnosis) are sparse. We conducted an event-related fMRI study examining the interactive and distinct effects of sex and MDD on neural activity during a facial emotion perception task. To minimize effects of current affective state and cumulative disease burden, we studied participants with remitted MDD (rMDD) who were early in the course of the illness. In total, 88 individuals aged 18-23 participated, including 48 with rMDD (32 female) and 40 healthy controls (HC; 25 female). fMRI revealed an interaction between sex and diagnosis for sad and neutral facial expressions in the superior frontal gyrus and left middle temporal gyrus. Results also revealed an interaction of sex with diagnosis in the amygdala. Data was from two sites, which might increase variability, but it also increases power to examine sex by diagnosis interactions. This study demonstrates the importance of taking sex differences into account when examining potential trait (or scar) mechanisms that could be useful in identifying individuals at-risk for MDD as well as for evaluating potential therapeutic innovations. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  16. Extreme sexual brain size dimorphism in sticklebacks: a consequence of the cognitive challenges of sex and parenting?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alexander Kotrschal

    Full Text Available Selection pressures that act differently on males and females produce numerous differences between the sexes in morphology and behaviour. However, apart from the controversial report that males have slightly heavier brains than females in humans, evidence for substantial sexual dimorphism in brain size is scarce. This apparent sexual uniformity is surprising given that sexually distinct selection pressures are ubiquitous and that brains are one of the most plastic vertebrate organs. Here we demonstrate the highest level of sexual brain size dimorphism ever reported in any vertebrate: male three-spined stickleback of two morphs in an Icelandic lake have 23% heavier brains than females. We suggest that this dramatic sexual size dimorphism is generated by the many cognitively demanding challenges that males are faced in this species, such as an elaborate courtship display, the construction of an ornate nest and a male-only parental care system. However, we consider also alternative explanations for smaller brains in females, such as life-history trade-offs. Our demonstration of unprecedented levels of sexual dimorphism in brain size in the three-spined stickleback implies that behavioural and life-history differences among the sexes can have strong effects also on neural development and proposes new fields of research for understanding brain evolution.

  17. Impacts of stress and sex hormones on dopamine neurotransmission in the adolescent brain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sinclair, Duncan; Purves-Tyson, Tertia D; Allen, Katherine M; Weickert, Cynthia Shannon

    2014-04-01

    Adolescence is a developmental period of complex neurobiological change and heightened vulnerability to psychiatric illness. As a result, understanding factors such as sex and stress hormones which drive brain changes in adolescence, and how these factors may influence key neurotransmitter systems implicated in psychiatric illness, is paramount. In this review, we outline the impact of sex and stress hormones at adolescence on dopamine neurotransmission, a signaling pathway which is critical to healthy brain function and has been implicated in psychiatric illness. We review normative developmental changes in dopamine, sex hormone, and stress hormone signaling during adolescence and throughout postnatal life, then highlight the interaction of sex and stress hormones and review their impacts on dopamine neurotransmission in the adolescent brain. Adolescence is a time of increased responsiveness to sex and stress hormones, during which the maturing dopaminergic neural circuitry is profoundly influenced by these factors. Testosterone, estrogen, and glucocorticoids interact with each other and have distinct, brain region-specific impacts on dopamine neurotransmission in the adolescent brain, shaping brain maturation and cognitive function in adolescence and adulthood. Some effects of stress/sex hormones on cortical and subcortical dopamine parameters bear similarities with dopaminergic abnormalities seen in schizophrenia, suggesting a possible role for sex/stress hormones at adolescence in influencing risk for psychiatric illness via modulation of dopamine neurotransmission. Stress and sex hormones may prove useful targets in future strategies for modifying risk for psychiatric illness.

  18. Sex Differences in the Pharmacokinetics of Antidepressants : Influence of Female Sex Hormones and Oral Contraceptives

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Damoiseaux, Valerie A.; Proost, Johannes H.; Jiawan, Vincent C. R.; Melgert, Barbro N.

    Women are twice as likely to develop depression as men. Moreover, the symptoms they experience also show sex differences: women tend to develop depression at an earlier age and show more severe symptoms than men. Likewise, the response to antidepressant pharmacotherapy appears to have sex

  19. Effects of Age and Sex on Hospital Readmission in Traumatic Brain Injury.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Chih-Ying; Karmarkar, Amol; Adhikari, Deepak; Ottenbacher, Kenneth; Kuo, Yong-Fang

    2018-01-04

    To investigate the effects of age and sex on 30-, 60-, and 90-day hospital readmission after acute hospital discharge for individuals with traumatic brain injury (TBI). Retrospective cohort study. Acute hospitals and postacute discharge settings. Individuals (N=52,877) with Diagnosis Related Group codes of TBI, who were divided into 4 age groups: 18 to 40, 41 to 65, 66 to 75, and ≥76 years. Not applicable. All-cause hospital readmission. Sex differences in 30-, 60-, and 90-day hospital readmission were found among all age groups (Preadmission were in the 2 oldest groups (66-75 and ≥76y). For both sexes, the oldest group (≥76y) had the highest adjusted 90-day readmission risk (eg, 90-d readmission: odds ratio, 2.32 [95% confidence interval, 2.01-2.69] for men; odds ratio, 1.96 [95% confidence interval, 1.59-2.43] for women). Among those readmitted within 90 days, the youngest group (18-40y) had the highest cumulative readmission percentage (35% for both sexes) within the first week of hospital discharge. Age and sex were significantly associated with hospital readmission during the first 90 days postdischarge in our TBI sample. Specifically, those aged 66 to 75 or ≥76 years had the highest readmission risk over 90 days for both sexes. The findings suggest that clinicians should consider age and sex in discharge planning and for the entire episode of care for the population with TBI. Copyright © 2018 American Congress of Rehabilitation Medicine. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  20. Human subcortical brain asymmetries in 15,847 people worldwide reveal effects of age and sex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guadalupe, Tulio; Mathias, Samuel R; vanErp, Theo G M; Whelan, Christopher D; Zwiers, Marcel P; Abe, Yoshinari; Abramovic, Lucija; Agartz, Ingrid; Andreassen, Ole A; Arias-Vásquez, Alejandro; Aribisala, Benjamin S; Armstrong, Nicola J; Arolt, Volker; Artiges, Eric; Ayesa-Arriola, Rosa; Baboyan, Vatche G; Banaschewski, Tobias; Barker, Gareth; Bastin, Mark E; Baune, Bernhard T; Blangero, John; Bokde, Arun L W; Boedhoe, Premika S W; Bose, Anushree; Brem, Silvia; Brodaty, Henry; Bromberg, Uli; Brooks, Samantha; Büchel, Christian; Buitelaar, Jan; Calhoun, Vince D; Cannon, Dara M; Cattrell, Anna; Cheng, Yuqi; Conrod, Patricia J; Conzelmann, Annette; Corvin, Aiden; Crespo-Facorro, Benedicto; Crivello, Fabrice; Dannlowski, Udo; de Zubicaray, Greig I; de Zwarte, Sonja M C; Deary, Ian J; Desrivières, Sylvane; Doan, Nhat Trung; Donohoe, Gary; Dørum, Erlend S; Ehrlich, Stefan; Espeseth, Thomas; Fernández, Guillén; Flor, Herta; Fouche, Jean-Paul; Frouin, Vincent; Fukunaga, Masaki; Gallinat, Jürgen; Garavan, Hugh; Gill, Michael; Suarez, Andrea Gonzalez; Gowland, Penny; Grabe, Hans J; Grotegerd, Dominik; Gruber, Oliver; Hagenaars, Saskia; Hashimoto, Ryota; Hauser, Tobias U; Heinz, Andreas; Hibar, Derrek P; Hoekstra, Pieter J; Hoogman, Martine; Howells, Fleur M; Hu, Hao; Hulshoff Pol, Hilleke E; Huyser, Chaim; Ittermann, Bernd; Jahanshad, Neda; Jönsson, Erik G; Jurk, Sarah; Kahn, Rene S; Kelly, Sinead; Kraemer, Bernd; Kugel, Harald; Kwon, Jun Soo; Lemaitre, Herve; Lesch, Klaus-Peter; Lochner, Christine; Luciano, Michelle; Marquand, Andre F; Martin, Nicholas G; Martínez-Zalacaín, Ignacio; Martinot, Jean-Luc; Mataix-Cols, David; Mather, Karen; McDonald, Colm; McMahon, Katie L; Medland, Sarah E; Menchón, José M; Morris, Derek W; Mothersill, Omar; Maniega, Susana Munoz; Mwangi, Benson; Nakamae, Takashi; Nakao, Tomohiro; Narayanaswaamy, Janardhanan C; Nees, Frauke; Nordvik, Jan E; Onnink, A Marten H; Opel, Nils; Ophoff, Roel; Paillère Martinot, Marie-Laure; Papadopoulos Orfanos, Dimitri; Pauli, Paul; Paus, Tomáš; Poustka, Luise; Reddy, Janardhan Yc; Renteria, Miguel E; Roiz-Santiáñez, Roberto; Roos, Annerine; Royle, Natalie A; Sachdev, Perminder; Sánchez-Juan, Pascual; Schmaal, Lianne; Schumann, Gunter; Shumskaya, Elena; Smolka, Michael N; Soares, Jair C; Soriano-Mas, Carles; Stein, Dan J; Strike, Lachlan T; Toro, Roberto; Turner, Jessica A; Tzourio-Mazoyer, Nathalie; Uhlmann, Anne; Hernández, Maria Valdés; van den Heuvel, Odile A; van der Meer, Dennis; van Haren, Neeltje E M; Veltman, Dick J; Venkatasubramanian, Ganesan; Vetter, Nora C; Vuletic, Daniella; Walitza, Susanne; Walter, Henrik; Walton, Esther; Wang, Zhen; Wardlaw, Joanna; Wen, Wei; Westlye, Lars T; Whelan, Robert; Wittfeld, Katharina; Wolfers, Thomas; Wright, Margaret J; Xu, Jian; Xu, Xiufeng; Yun, Je-Yeon; Zhao, JingJing; Franke, Barbara; Thompson, Paul M; Glahn, David C; Mazoyer, Bernard; Fisher, Simon E; Francks, Clyde

    2017-10-01

    The two hemispheres of the human brain differ functionally and structurally. Despite over a century of research, the extent to which brain asymmetry is influenced by sex, handedness, age, and genetic factors is still controversial. Here we present the largest ever analysis of subcortical brain asymmetries, in a harmonized multi-site study using meta-analysis methods. Volumetric asymmetry of seven subcortical structures was assessed in 15,847 MRI scans from 52 datasets worldwide. There were sex differences in the asymmetry of the globus pallidus and putamen. Heritability estimates, derived from 1170 subjects belonging to 71 extended pedigrees, revealed that additive genetic factors influenced the asymmetry of these two structures and that of the hippocampus and thalamus. Handedness had no detectable effect on subcortical asymmetries, even in this unprecedented sample size, but the asymmetry of the putamen varied with age. Genetic drivers of asymmetry in the hippocampus, thalamus and basal ganglia may affect variability in human cognition, including susceptibility to psychiatric disorders.

  1. Interactions Between Stress and Sex in Microbial Responses Within the Microbiota-Gut-Brain Axis in a Mouse Model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tsilimigras, Matthew C B; Gharaibeh, Raad Z; Sioda, Michael; Gray, Laura; Fodor, Anthony A; Lyte, Mark

    2018-05-01

    Animal models are frequently used to examine stress response, but experiments seldom include females. The connection between the microbiota-gut-brain axis and behavioral stress response is investigated here using a mixed-sex mouse cohort. CF-1 mice underwent alternating days of restraint and forced swim for 19 days (male n = 8, female n = 8) with matching numbers of control animals at which point the 16S rRNA genes of gut microbiota were sequenced. Mixed linear models accounting for stress status and sex with individuals nested in cage to control for cage effects evaluated these data. Murine behaviors in elevated plus-maze, open-field, and light/dark box were investigated. Community-level associations with sex, stress, and their interaction were significant. Males had higher microbial diversity than females (p = .025). Of the 638 operational taxonomic units detected in at least 25% of samples, 94 operational taxonomic units were significant: 31 (stress), 61 (sex), and 34 (sex-stress interaction). Twenty of the 39 behavioral measures were significant for stress, 3 for sex, and 6 for sex-stress. However, no significant associations between behavioral measures and specific microbes were detected. These data suggest sex influences stress response and the microbiota-gut-brain axis and that studies of behavior and the microbiome therefore benefit from consideration of how sex differences drive behavior and microbial community structure. Host stress resilience and absence of associations between stress-induced behaviors with specific microbes suggests that hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis activation represents a threshold for microbial influence on host behavior. Future studies are needed in examining the intersection of sex, stress response, and the microbiota-gut-brain axis.

  2. Gender-stereotyping and cognitive sex differences in mixed- and same-sex groups.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hirnstein, Marco; Coloma Andrews, Lisa; Hausmann, Markus

    2014-11-01

    Sex differences in specific cognitive abilities are well documented, but the biological, psychological, and sociocultural interactions that may underlie these differences are largely unknown. We examined within a biopsychosocial approach how gender stereotypes affect cognitive sex differences when adult participants were tested in mixed- or same-sex groups. A total of 136 participants (70 women) were allocated to either mixed- or same-sex groups and completed a battery of sex-sensitive cognitive tests (i.e., mental rotation, verbal fluency, perceptual speed) after gender stereotypes or gender-neutral stereotypes (control) were activated. To study the potential role of testosterone as a mediator for group sex composition and stereotype boost/threat effects, saliva samples were taken before the stereotype manipulation and after cognitive testing. The results showed the typical male and female advantages in mental rotation and verbal fluency, respectively. In general, men and women who were tested in mixed-sex groups and whose gender stereotypes had not been activated performed best. Moreover, a stereotype threat effect emerged in verbal fluency with reduced performance in gender stereotyped men but not women. Testosterone levels did not mediate the effects of group sex composition and stereotype threat nor did we find any relationship between testosterone and cognitive performance in men and women. Taken together, the findings suggest that an interaction of gender stereotyping and group sex composition affects the performance of men and women in sex-sensitive cognitive tasks. Mixed-sex settings can, in fact, increase cognitive performance as long as gender-stereotyping is prevented.

  3. Reconciling Sex Differences in Information-Processing and Career Outcomes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wolleat, Patricia L.

    1990-01-01

    Information processing theory could be made more sensitive to differences in career outcomes for males and females by (1) examining the nature of the career decision; (2) expanding the notion of information; (3) relating the vocational schema to the gender schema; and (4) noting whether variables are general, sex related, or sex specific. (SK)

  4. Sex Differences in Genetic Architecture of Complex Phenotypes?

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Vink, J.M.; Bartels, M.; van Beijsterveldt, C.E.M.; van Dongen, J.; van Beek, J.H.D.A.; Distel, M.A.; de Moor, M.H.M.; Smit, D.J.A.; Minica, C.C.; Ligthart, R.S.L.; Geels, L.M.; Abdellaoui, A.; Middeldorp, C.M.; Hottenga, J.J.; Willemsen, G.; de Geus, E.J.C.; Boomsma, D.I.

    2012-01-01

    We examined sex differences in familial resemblance for a broad range of behavioral, psychiatric and health related phenotypes (122 complex traits) in children and adults. There is a renewed interest in the importance of genotype by sex interaction in, for example, genome-wide association (GWA)

  5. Sex differences in drug abuse: Etiology, prevention, and treatment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Evans, Suzette M; Reynolds, Brady

    2015-08-01

    This special issue exemplifies one of the major goals of the current editor of Experimental and Clinical Psychopharmacology (Dr. Suzette Evans): to increase the number of manuscripts that emphasize females and address sex differences. Taken together, these articles represent a broad range of drug classes and approaches spanning preclinical research to treatment to better understand the role of sex differences in drug abuse. While not all studies found sex differences, we want to emphasize that finding no sex difference is just as important as confirming one, and should be reported in peer-reviewed journals. It is our intention and hope that this special issue will further advance scientific awareness about the importance of accounting for sex differences in the study of substance abuse. Participant sex is an essential variable to consider in developing a more comprehensive understanding of substance abuse. Rather than viewing investigating sex differences as burdensome, investigators should seize this opportune area ripe for innovative research that is long overdue. (c) 2015 APA, all rights reserved).

  6. Review: magnetic resonance imaging of male/female differences in human adolescent brain anatomy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Giedd Jay N

    2012-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Improvements in neuroimaging technologies, and greater access to their use, have generated a plethora of data regarding male/female differences in the developing brain. Examination of these differences may shed light on the pathophysiology of the many illnesses that differ between the sexes and ultimately lead to more effective interventions. In this review, we attempt to synthesize the anatomic magnetic resonance imaging (MRI literature of male/female brain differences with emphasis on studies encompassing adolescence – a time of divergence in physical and behavioral characteristics. Across all ages total brain size is consistently reported to be about 10% larger in males. Structures commonly reported to be different between sexes include the caudate nucleus, amygdala, hippocampus, and cerebellum – all noted to have a relatively high density of sex steroid receptors. The direction and magnitude of reported brain differences depends on the methodology of data acquisition and analysis, whether and how the subcomponents are adjusted for the total brain volume difference, and the age of the participants in the studies. Longitudinal studies indicate regional cortical gray matter volumes follow inverted U shaped developmental trajectories with peak size occurring one to three years earlier in females. Cortical gray matter differences are modulated by androgen receptor genotyope and by circulating levels of hormones. White matter volumes increase throughout childhood and adolescence in both sexes but more rapidly in adolescent males resulting in an expanding magnitude of sex differences from childhood to adulthood.

  7. Sex differences in locomotor effects of morphine in the rat

    OpenAIRE

    Craft, Rebecca M.; Clark, James L.; Hart, Stephen P.; Pinckney, Megan K.

    2006-01-01

    Sex differences in reinforcing, analgesic and other effects of opioids have been demonstrated; however, the extent to which sex differences in motoric effects of opioids contribute to apparent sex differences in their primary effects is not known. The goal of this study was to compare the effects of the prototypic mu opioid agonist morphine on locomotor activity in male vs. female rats. Saline or morphine (1-10 mg/kg) was administered s.c. to adult Sprague-Dawley rats, which were placed into ...

  8. On the Real Magnitude of Psychological Sex Differences

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marco Del Giudice

    2009-04-01

    Full Text Available A comprehensive evolutionary theory of sex differences will benefit from an accurate assessment of their magnitude across different psychological domains. This article shows that mainstream research has severely underestimated the magnitude of psychological sex differences; the reason lies in the common practice of measuring multidimensional differences one dimension at a time, without integrating them into a proper multivariate effect size (ES. Employing the Mahalanobis distance D (the multivariate generalization of Cohen's d results in more accurate, and predictably larger, estimates of overall sex differences in multidimensional constructs. Two real-world examples are presented: (1 In a published dataset on Big Five personality traits, sex differences on individual scales averaged d = .27, a typical ES conventionally regarded as “small.” However, the overall difference was D = .84 (disattenuated D = .98, implying considerable statistical separation between male and female distributions. (2 In a recent meta-analytic summary of sex differences in aggression, the individual ESs averaged d = .34. However, the overall difference was estimated at D = .75 – .80 (disattenuated D = .89–1.01. In many psychological domains, sex differences may be substantially larger than previously acknowledged.

  9. Sex differences in impulsive action and impulsive choice

    OpenAIRE

    Weafer, Jessica; de Wit, Harriet

    2013-01-01

    Here, we review the evidence for sex differences in behavioral measures of impulsivity for both humans and laboratory animals. We focus on two specific components of impulsivity: impulsive action (i.e., difficulty inhibiting a prepotent response) and impulsive choice (i.e., difficulty delaying gratification). Sex differences appear to exist on these measures, but the direction and magnitude of the differences vary. In laboratory animals, impulsive action is typically greater in males than fem...

  10. Sex differences in wild chimpanzee behavior emerge during infancy.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elizabeth V Lonsdorf

    Full Text Available The role of biological and social influences on sex differences in human child development is a persistent topic of discussion and debate. Given their many similarities to humans, chimpanzees are an important study species for understanding the biological and evolutionary roots of sex differences in human development. In this study, we present the most detailed analyses of wild chimpanzee infant development to date, encompassing data from 40 infants from the long-term study of chimpanzees at Gombe National Park, Tanzania. Our goal was to characterize age-related changes, from birth to five years of age, in the percent of observation time spent performing behaviors that represent important benchmarks in nutritional, motor, and social development, and to determine whether and in which behaviors sex differences occur. Sex differences were found for indicators of social behavior, motor development and spatial independence with males being more physically precocious and peaking in play earlier than females. These results demonstrate early sex differentiation that may reflect adult reproductive strategies. Our findings also resemble those found in humans, which suggests that biologically-based sex differences may have been present in the common ancestor and operated independently from the influences of modern sex-biased parental behavior and gender socialization.

  11. Mechanisms of Sex Differences in Fear and Posttraumatic Stress Disorder.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ramikie, Teniel Sonya; Ressler, Kerry J

    2018-05-15

    Following sexual maturity, females disproportionately have higher rates of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and experience greater symptom severity and chronicity as compared with males. This observation has led many to examine sex differences in PTSD risk factors. Though relatively few, these studies reveal that the root causes of PTSD sex differences are complex, and partly represent interactions between sex-specific nonbiological and biological risk factors, which differentially shape PTSD vulnerability. Moreover, these studies suggest that sex-specific PTSD vulnerability is partly regulated by sex differences in fear systems. Fear, which represents a highly conserved adaptive response to threatening environmental stimuli, becomes pathological in trauma- and stress-based psychiatric syndromes, such as PTSD. Over the last 30 years, considerable progress has been made in understanding normal and pathological molecular and behavioral fear processes in humans and animal models. Thus, fear mechanisms represent a tractable PTSD biomarker in the study of sex differences in fear. In this review, we discuss studies that examine nonbiological and biological sex differences that contribute to normal and pathological fear behaviors in humans and animal models. This, we hope, will shed greater light on the potential mechanisms that contribute to increased PTSD vulnerability in females. Copyright © 2017 Society of Biological Psychiatry. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  12. Sex differences in the fetal programming of hypertension.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grigore, Daniela; Ojeda, Norma B; Alexander, Barbara T

    2008-01-01

    Numerous clinical and experimental studies support the hypothesis that the intrauterine environment is an important determinant of cardiovascular disease and hypertension. This review examined the mechanisms linking an adverse fetal environment and increased risk for chronic disease in adulthood with an emphasis on gender differences and the role of sex hormones in mediating sexual dimorphism in response to a suboptimal fetal environment. This review focuses on current findings from the PubMed database regarding animal models of fetal programming of hypertension, sex differences in phenotypic outcomes, and potential mechanisms in offspring of mothers exposed to an adverse insult during gestation. For the years 1988 to 2007, the database was searched using the following terms: fetal programming, intrauterine growth restriction, low birth weight, sex differences, estradiol, testosterone, high blood pressure, and hypertension. The mechanisms involved in the fetal programming of adult disease are multifactorial and include alterations in the regulatory systems affecting the long-tterm control of arterial pressure. Sex differences have been observed in animal models of fetal programming, and recent studies suggest that sex hormones may modulate activity of regulatory systems, leading to a lower incidence of hypertension and vascular dysfunction in females compared with males. Animal models of fetal programming provide critical support for the inverse relationship between birth weight and blood pressure. Experimental models demonstrate that sex differences are observed in the pathophysiologic response to an adverse fetal environment. A role for sex hormone involvement is strongly suggested,with modulation of the renin-angiotensin system as a possible mechanism.

  13. Sex and gender differences in pain and analgesia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mogil, Jeffrey S; Bailey, Andrea L

    2010-01-01

    It is a clinical reality that women make up the large majority of chronic pain patients, and there is now consensus from laboratory experiments that when differences are seen, women are more sensitive to pain than men. Research in this field has now begun to concentrate on finding explanations for this sex difference. Although sex differences in sociocultural, psychological, and experiential factors likely play important roles, evidence largely from animal studies has revealed surprisingly robust and often qualitative sex differences at low levels of the neuraxis. Although not yet able to affect clinical practice, the continued study of sex differences in pain may have important implications for the development of new analgesic strategies. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  14. Sex differences of human cortical blood flow and energy metabolism

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Aanerud, Joel; Borghammer, Per; Rodell, Anders

    2017-01-01

    cerebral blood flow and cerebral metabolic rate of oxygen as functions of age in healthy volunteers of both sexes. Cerebral metabolic rate of oxygen did not change with age for either sex and there were no differences of mean values of cerebral metabolic rate of oxygen between men and women in cerebral...... cortex. Women had significant decreases of cerebral blood flow as function of age in frontal and parietal lobes. Young women had significantly higher cerebral blood flow than men in frontal and temporal lobes, but these differences had disappeared at age 65. The absent sex difference of cerebral energy...... turnover suggests that the known differences of synaptic density between the sexes are counteracted by opposite differences of individual synaptic activity....

  15. Sex Differences Influencing Micro- and Macrovascular Endothelial Phenotype In Vitro.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huxley, Virginia H; Kemp, Scott S; Schramm, Christine; Sieveking, Steve; Bingaman, Susan; Yu, Yang; Zaniletti, Isabella; Stockard, Kevin; Wang, Jianjie

    2018-06-09

    Endothelial dysfunction is an early hallmark of multiple disease states that also display sex differences with respect to age of onset, frequency, and severity. Results of in vivo studies of basal and stimulated microvascular barrier function revealed sex differences difficult to ascribe to specific cells or environmental factors. The present study evaluated endothelial cells (EC) isolated from macro- and/or microvessels of reproductively mature rats under the controlled conditions of low-passage culture to test the assumption that EC phenotype would be sex-independent. The primary finding was that EC, regardless of where they are derived, retain a sex-bias in low-passage culture, independent of varying levels of reproductive hormones. Implications of the work include the fallacy of expecting a universal set of mechanisms derived from study of EC from one sex and/or one vascular origin to apply uniformly to all EC under unstimulated conditions no less in the disease state. Vascular endothelial cells (EC) are heterogeneous with respect to phenotype reflecting at least organ of origin, location within the vascular network, and physical forces. Sex, as an independent influence on EC functions in health or etiology, susceptibility, and progression of dysfunction in numerous disease states, has been largely ignored. The current study focussed on EC isolated from aorta (macrovascular) and skeletal muscle vessels (microvascular) of age-matched male and female rats under identical conditions of short term (passage 4) culture. We tested the hypothesis that genomic sex would not influence endothelial growth, wound healing, morphology, lactate production, or messenger RNA and protein expression of key proteins (sex hormone receptors for androgen (AR) and oestrogen (ERα and ERβ); PECAM-1 and VE-CAD mediating barrier function; α v β 3 and N-Cadherin influencing matrix interactions; ICAM-1 and VCAM-1 mediating EC/white cell adhesion). The hypothesis was rejected as EC origin

  16. Sex differences in the subjective tolerability of antipsychotic drugs

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Barbui, Corrado; Nosè, Michela; Bindman, Jonathan; Schene, Aart; Becker, Thomas; Mazzi, Maria A.; Kikkert, Martijn; Camara, Jayne; Born, Anja; Tansella, Michele

    2005-01-01

    In recent years, research efforts have been directed to better characterize the Subjective experience of taking psychotropic drugs. This Study investigated the sex difference in the subjective tolerability of antipsychotic drugs. Participants were recruited from patients under the care of

  17. Autonomy-connectedness mediates sex differences in symptoms of psychopathology

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bekker, Marrie H.J.; Van Assen, Marcel A.L.M.

    2017-01-01

    Objectives: This study aimed to examine if autonomy-connectedness, capacity for self-governance under the condition of connectedness, would mediate sex differences in symptoms of various mental disorders (depression, anxiety, eating disorders, antisocial personality disorder). Method: Participants

  18. Autonomy-connectedness mediates sex differences in symptoms of psychopathology

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bekker, M.H.J.; van Assen, M.A.L.M.

    2017-01-01

    Objectives This study aimed to examine if autonomy-connectedness, capacity for self-governance under the condition of connectedness, would mediate sex differences in symptoms of various mental disorders (depression, anxiety, eating disorders, antisocial personality disorder). Method Participants (N

  19. Interactive effects of sex hormones and gender stereotypes on cognitive sex differences--a psychobiosocial approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hausmann, Markus; Schoofs, Daniela; Rosenthal, Harriet E S; Jordan, Kirsten

    2009-04-01

    Biological and social factors have been shown to affect cognitive sex differences. For example, several studies have found that sex hormones have activating effects on sex-sensitive tasks. On the other hand, it has been shown that gender stereotypes can influence the cognitive performance of (gender-) stereotyped individuals. However, few studies have investigated the combined effects of both factors. The present study investigated the interaction between sex hormones and gender stereotypes within a psychobiosocial approach. One hundred and fourteen participants (59 women) performed a battery of sex-sensitive cognitive tasks, including mental rotation, verbal fluency, and perceptual speed. Saliva samples were taken immediately after cognitive testing. Levels of testosterone (T) were analysed using chemiluminescence immunoassay (LIA). To activate gender stereotypes, a questionnaire was applied to the experimental group that referred to the cognitive tasks used. The control group received an identical questionnaire but with a gender-neutral content. As expected, significant sex differences favouring males and females appeared for mental rotation and verbal fluency tasks, respectively. The results revealed no sex difference in perceptual speed. The male superiority in the Revised Vandenberg and Kuse Mental Rotations Tests (MRT-3D) was mainly driven by the stereotype-active group. No significant sex difference in MRT-3D appeared in the control group. The MRT-3D was also the task in which a strong gender-stereotype favouring males was present for both males and females. Interestingly, T levels of the stereotype-activated group were 60% higher than that of male controls. The results suggest that sex hormones mediate the effects of gender stereotypes on specific cognitive abilities.

  20. Sex differences in sensation-seeking: a meta-analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cross, Catharine P; Cyrenne, De-Laine M; Brown, Gillian R

    2013-01-01

    Men score higher than women on measures of sensation-seeking, defined as a willingness to engage in novel or intense activities. This sex difference has been explained in terms of evolved psychological mechanisms or culturally transmitted social norms. We investigated whether sex differences in sensation-seeking have changed over recent years by conducting a meta-analysis of studies using Zuckerman's Sensation Seeking Scale, version V (SSS-V). We found that sex differences in total SSS-V scores have remained stable across years, as have sex differences in Disinhibition and Boredom Susceptibility. In contrast, the sex difference in Thrill and Adventure Seeking has declined, possibly due to changes in social norms or out-dated questions on this sub-scale. Our results support the view that men and women differ in their propensity to report sensation-seeking characteristics, while behavioural manifestations of sensation-seeking vary over time. Sex differences in sensation-seeking could reflect genetically influenced predispositions interacting with socially transmitted information.

  1. The brain reaction to viewing faces of opposite- and same-sex romantic partners.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Semir Zeki

    2010-12-01

    Full Text Available We pursued our functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI studies of the neural correlates of romantic love in 24 subjects, half of whom were female (6 heterosexual and 6 homosexual and half male (6 heterosexual and 6 homosexual. We compared the pattern of activity produced in their brains when they viewed the faces of their loved partners with that produced when they viewed the faces of friends of the same sex to whom they were romantically indifferent. The pattern of activation and de-activation was very similar in the brains of males and females, and heterosexuals and homosexuals. We could therefore detect no difference in activation patterns between these groups.

  2. Role of Sex Hormones on Brain Mitochondrial Function, with Special Reference to Aging and Neurodegenerative Diseases

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pauline Gaignard

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available The mitochondria have a fundamental role in both cellular energy supply and oxidative stress regulation and are target of the effects of sex steroids, particularly the neuroprotective ones. Aging is associated with a decline in the levels of different steroid hormones, and this decrease may underline some neural dysfunctions. Besides, modifications in mitochondrial functions associated with aging processes are also well documented. In this review, we will discuss studies that describe the modifications of brain mitochondrial function and of steroid levels associated with physiological aging and with neurodegenerative diseases. A special emphasis will be placed on describing and discussing our recent findings concerning the concomitant study of mitochondrial function (oxidative phosphorylation, oxidative stress and brain steroid levels in both young (3-month-old and aged (20-month-old male and female mice.

  3. Sex differences in asthma in swimmers and tennis players

    OpenAIRE

    Romberg, Kerstin; Tufvesson, Ellen; Bjermer, Leif

    2017-01-01

    Background: Elite athletes, independent of sport, have increased risk of developing asthma, but little is known about sex difference among adolescent athletes. Objective: To investigate and compare sex-related differences according to symptoms and treatment of asthma, allergy, and health among elite athletes and a reference group. Methods: Adolescent elite swimmers (n = 101), tennis players (n = 86), and a reference group (n = 1,628) responded to a questionnaire about respiratory symptoms, al...

  4. Sex differences in the functional connectivity of the amygdalae in association with cortisol.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kogler, Lydia; Müller, Veronika I; Seidel, Eva-Maria; Boubela, Roland; Kalcher, Klaudius; Moser, Ewald; Habel, Ute; Gur, Ruben C; Eickhoff, Simon B; Derntl, Birgit

    2016-07-01

    Human amygdalae are involved in various behavioral functions such as affective and stress processing. For these behavioral functions, as well as for psychophysiological arousal including cortisol release, sex differences are reported. Here, we assessed cortisol levels and resting-state functional connectivity (rsFC) of left and right amygdalae in 81 healthy participants (42 women) to investigate potential modulation of amygdala rsFC by sex and cortisol concentration. Our analyses revealed that rsFC of the left amygdala significantly differed between women and men: Women showed stronger rsFC than men between the left amygdala and left middle temporal gyrus, inferior frontal gyrus, postcentral gyrus and hippocampus, regions involved in face processing, inner-speech, fear and pain processing. No stronger connections were detected for men and no sex difference emerged for right amygdala rsFC. Also, an interaction of sex and cortisol appeared: In women, cortisol was negatively associated with rsFC of the amygdalae with striatal regions, mid-orbital frontal gyrus, anterior cingulate gyrus, middle and superior frontal gyri, supplementary motor area and the parietal-occipital sulcus. Contrarily in men, positive associations of cortisol with rsFC of the left amygdala and these structures were observed. Functional decoding analyses revealed an association of the amygdalae and these regions with emotion, reward and memory processing, as well as action execution. Our results suggest that functional connectivity of the amygdalae as well as the regulatory effect of cortisol on brain networks differs between women and men. These sex-differences and the mediating and sex-dependent effect of cortisol on brain communication systems should be taken into account in affective and stress-related neuroimaging research. Thus, more studies including both sexes are required. Copyright © 2016 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  5. Sex Differences in Sexual Desires and Attitudes in Norwegian Samples

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Leif Edward Ottesen Kennair

    2009-06-01

    Full Text Available Despite highly replicable predictable differences between the sexes on various sexual desires and attitudes, critics of evolutionary perspectives argue against the biological origins of such differences, highlighting cultural explanations. Critics suggest that there are no cross-cultural evolutionary predictable, systematic differences. Eagly and Wood (1999 suggest that in egalitarian cultures sex differences will be small or disappear. We tested whether Trivers’ (1972 Parental Investment Theory and Buss and Schmitt’s (1993 Sexual Strategies Theory predicted sex differences in sexuality within samples of students (N=1072 in egalitarian Norway. We expected similar interest in long-term relationships, but that females seek short-term partners less than males. Furthermore, males were expected to have less restricted sociosexuality, fantasize more, take more initiative to sex and be less satisfied with frequency of sex. The predictions were supported in the evolutionarily-predicted directions. Clinical consequences of claiming there are no sex differences in sexuality, when indeed they exist, are discussed.

  6. How to study sex differences in addiction using animal models.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carroll, Marilyn E; Lynch, Wendy J

    2016-09-01

    The importance of studying sex as a biological variable in biomedical research is becoming increasingly apparent. There is a particular need in preclinical studies of addiction to include both sexes, as female animals are often excluded from studies, leaving large gaps in our knowledge of not only sex differences and potential prevention and treatment strategies but also with regard to the basic neurobiology of addiction. This review focuses on methodology that has been developed in preclinical studies to examine sex differences in the behavioral aspects and neurobiological mechanisms related to addiction across the full range of the addiction process, including initiation (acquisition), maintenance, escalation, withdrawal, relapse to drug seeking and treatment. This review also discusses strategic and technical issues that need to be considered when comparing females and males, including the role of ovarian hormones and how sex differences interact with other major vulnerability factors in addiction, such as impulsivity, compulsivity and age (adolescent versus adult). Novel treatments for addiction are also discussed, such as competing non-drug rewards, repurposed medications such as progesterone and treatment combinations. Practical aspects of conducting research comparing female and male animals are also considered. Making sex differences a point of examination requires additional effort and consideration; however, such studies are necessary given mounting evidence demonstrating that the addiction process occurs differently in males and females. These studies should lead to a better understanding of individual differences in the development of addiction and effective treatments for males and females. © 2016 Society for the Study of Addiction.

  7. [Sex differences in congenital heart disease].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aubry, P; Demian, H

    2016-12-01

    Gender influences the clinical presentation and the management of some acquired cardiovascular diseases, such as coronary artery disease, resulting in different outcomes. Differences between women and men are also noticed in congenital heart disease. They are mainly related to the prevalence and severity of some congenital heart defects at birth, and in adulthood to the prognosis, incidence of Eisenmenger syndrome and risks of pregnancy. The role of gender on the risk of operative mortality of congenital heart surgery remains debated. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Masson SAS. All rights reserved.

  8. Sex differences in sleep disordered breathing in adults.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lozo, Tijana; Komnenov, Dragana; Badr, M Safwan; Mateika, Jason H

    2017-11-01

    The prevalence of sleep disordered breathing is greater in men compared to women. This disparity could be due to sex differences in the diagnosis and presentation of sleep apnea, and the pathophysiological mechanisms that instigate this disorder. Women tend to report more non-typical symptoms of sleep apnea compared to men, and the presentation of apneic events are more prevalent in rapid compared to non-rapid eye movement sleep. In addition, there is evidence of sex differences in upper airway structure and mechanics and in neural mechanisms that impact on the control of breathing. The purpose of this review is to summarize the literature that addresses sex differences in sleep-disordered breathing, and to discuss the influence that upper airway mechanics, chemoreflex properties, and sex hormones have in modulating breathing during sleep in men and women. Published by Elsevier B.V.

  9. A developmental sex difference in hippocampal neurogenesis is mediated by endogenous oestradiol

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bowers J Michael

    2010-11-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Oestradiol is a steroid hormone that exerts extensive influence on brain development and is a powerful modulator of hippocampal structure and function. The hippocampus is a critical brain region regulating complex cognitive and emotional responses and is implicated in the aetiology of several mental health disorders, many of which exhibit some degree of sex difference. Many sex differences in the adult rat brain are determined by oestradiol action during a sensitive period of development. We had previously reported a sex difference in rates of cell genesis in the developing hippocampus of the laboratory rat. Males generate more new cells on average than females. The current study explored the effects of both exogenous and endogenous oestradiol on this sex difference. Methods New born male and female rat pups were injected with the mitotic marker 5-bromo-2-deoxyuridine (BrdU and oestradiol or agents that antagonize oestradiol action. The effects on cell number, proliferation, differentiation and survival were assessed at several time points. Significant differences between groups were determined by two- or thee-Way ANOVA. Results Newborn males had higher rates of cell proliferation than females. Oestradiol treatment increased cell proliferation in neonatal females, but not males, and in the CA1 region many of these cells differentiated into neurons. The increased rate of proliferation induced by neonatal oestradiol persisted until at least 3 weeks of age, suggesting an organizational effect. Administering the aromatase inhibitor, formestane, or the oestrogen receptor antagonist, tamoxifen, significantly decreased the number of new cells in males but not females. Conclusion Endogenous oestradiol increased the rate of cell proliferation observed in newborn males compared to females. This sex difference in neonatal neurogenesis may have implications for adult differences in learning strategy, stress responsivity or vulnerability

  10. Sex and gender differences in diabetes care

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hendriks, Steven

    2017-01-01

    Worldwide, many research has been performed to investigate differences between men and women with type 2 diabetes (T2D) (the most common type of diabetes). These studies showed that the negative impact of T2D on health is higher among women compared to men. However, whether this phenomenon holds

  11. Mapping plasticity: sex/gender and the changing brain

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kleinherenbrink, A.

    2014-01-01

    There is a consensus in the neuroscientific literature that brains are either male or female, and that ‘brain sex’ is a fixed, immutable trait. Feminist critics have challenged this idea, raising questions, for example, about brain plasticity (the role of sociocultural factors in the emergence and

  12. Recombination difference between sexes: a role for haploid selection.

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    Thomas Lenormand

    2005-03-01

    Full Text Available Why the autosomal recombination rate differs between female and male meiosis in most species has been a genetic enigma since the early study of meiosis. Some hypotheses have been put forward to explain this widespread phenomenon and, up to now, only one fact has emerged clearly: In species in which meiosis is achiasmate in one sex, it is the heterogametic one. This pattern, known as the Haldane-Huxley rule, is thought to be a side effect, on autosomes, of the suppression of recombination between the sex chromosomes. However, this rule does not hold for heterochiasmate species (i.e., species in which recombination is present in both sexes but varies quantitatively between sexes and does not apply to species lacking sex chromosomes, such as hermaphroditic plants. In this paper, we show that in plants, heterochiasmy is due to a male-female difference in gametic selection and is not influenced by the presence of heteromorphic sex chromosomes. This finding provides strong empirical support in favour of a population genetic explanation for the evolution of heterochiasmy and, more broadly, for the evolution of sex and recombination.

  13. Homage to Bateman: sex roles predict sex differences in sexual selection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fritzsche, Karoline; Arnqvis, Göran

    2013-07-01

    Classic sex role theory predicts that sexual selection should be stronger in males in taxa showing conventional sex roles and stronger in females in role reversed mating systems. To test this very central prediction and to assess the utility of different measures of sexual selection, we estimated sexual selection in both sexes in four seed beetle species with divergent sex roles using a novel experimental design. We found that sexual selection was sizeable in females and the strength of sexual selection was similar in females and males in role-reversed species. Sexual selection was overall significantly stronger in males than in females and residual selection formed a substantial component of net selection in both sexes. Furthermore, sexual selection in females was stronger in role-reversed species compared to species with conventional sex roles. Variance-based measures of sexual selection (the Bateman gradient and selection opportunities) were better predictors of sexual dimorphism in reproductive behavior and morphology across species compared to trait-based measures (selection differentials). Our results highlight the importance of using assays that incorporate components of fitness manifested after mating. We suggest that the Bateman gradient is generally the most informative measure of the strength of sexual selection in comparisons across sexes and/or species. © 2013 The Author(s). Evolution © 2013 The Society for the Study of Evolution.

  14. The differences between sex offenders who victimise older women and sex offenders who offend against children.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Browne, K D; Hines, Morag; Tully, Ruth J

    2018-01-01

    Within the literature on sex offending, much attention is paid to the distinction between those sex offenders who offend against adults and those who offend against children. In contrast, there is a paucity of research into sex offenders who offend specifically against elderly or older victims. A detailed interview and psychometric tests were conducted with a sample of 28 sex offenders who had been convicted of a sexually motivated offence against an older female. These data were compared to a sample of 23 child sex offenders. Results indicate that amongst other significant differences between these sub-groups, men who offend against older women are generally younger, are more violent, and are more likely to use a weapon and cause injury and death compared to child sex offenders. The men who offended against children were more likely to think about and plan their offending, spend more time with the victim pre and post offence, admit sexual arousal during the offence, and admit to a sexual motivation for the offence. This study suggests that men who sexually offend against older women and men who sexually offend against children are distinct groups. Treatment and risk management strategies should take this into account. Further exploration of this sub-group of offenders is recommended to help inform treatment and risk management strategies for sex offenders who offend against older people.

  15. Sex differences in the neural circuit that mediates female sexual receptivity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Flanagan-Cato, Loretta M.

    2011-01-01

    Female sexual behavior in rodents, typified by the lordosis posture, is hormone-dependent and sex-specific. Ovarian hormones control this behavior via receptors in the hypothalamic ventromedial nucleus (VMH). This review considers the sex differences in the morphology, neurochemistry and neural circuitry of the VMH to gain insights into the mechanisms that control lordosis. The VMH is larger in males compared with females, due to more synaptic connections. Another sex difference is the responsiveness to estradiol, with males exhibiting muted, and in some cases reverse, effects compared with females. The lack of lordosis in males may be explained by differences in synaptic organization or estrogen responsiveness, or both, in the VMH. However, given that damage to other brain regions unmasks lordosis behavior in males, a male-typical VMH is unlikely the main factor that prevents lordosis. In females, key questions remain regarding the mechanisms whereby ovarian hormones modulate VMH function to promote lordosis. PMID:21338620

  16. Sex differences in chronic stress effects on cognition in rodents.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Luine, Victoria; Gomez, Juan; Beck, Kevin; Bowman, Rachel

    2017-01-01

    Chronic stress causes deleterious changes in physiological function in systems ranging from neural cells in culture to laboratory rodents, sub-human primates and humans. It is notable, however, that the vast majority of research in this area has been conducted in males. In this review, we provide information about chronic stress effects on cognition in female rodents and contrast it with responses in male rodents. In general, females show cognitive resilience to chronic stressors which impair male cognitive function using spatial tasks including the radial arm maze, radial arm water maze, Morris water maze, Y-maze and object placement. Moreover, stress often enhances female performance in some of these cognitive tasks. Memory in females is not affected by stress in non-spatial memory tasks like recognition memory and temporal order recognition memory while males show impaired memory following stress. We discuss possible bases for these sex-dependent differences including the use of different strategies by the sexes to solve cognitive tasks. Whether the sex differences result from changes in non-mnemonic factors is also considered. Sex-dependent differences in alcohol and drug influences on stress responses are also described. Finally, the role of neurally derived estradiol in driving sex differences and providing resilience to stress in females is shown. The importance of determining the nature and extent of sex differences in stress responses is that such differences may provide vital information for understanding why some stress related diseases have different incidence rates between the sexes and for developing novel therapeutic treatments. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  17. The influence of sex steroids on structural brain maturation in adolescence

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Koolschijn, P.C.M.P.; Peper, J.S.; Crone, E.A.

    2014-01-01

    Puberty reflects a period of hormonal changes, physical maturation and structural brain reorganization. However, little attention has been paid to what extent sex steroids and pituitary hormones are associated with the refinement of brain maturation across adolescent development. Here we used

  18. Sex differences in the refractory period of the 100 ms auditory evoked magnetic field.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rojas, D C; Teale, P; Sheeder, J; Reite, M

    1999-11-08

    The 100 ms latency auditory evoked magnetic response (M100) has been implicated in the earliest stage of acoustic memory encoding in the brain. Sex differences in this response have been found in its location within the brain and its functional properties. We recorded the M100 in 25 adults in response to changes in interstimulus interval of an auditory stimulus. Response amplitudes of the M100 were used to compute a measure of the M100 refractory period, which has been proposed to index the decay time constant of echoic memory. This time constant was significantly longer in both hemispheres of the female participants when compared to the male participants. Possible implications of this for behavioral sex differences in human memory performance are discussed.

  19. The Clinician Perspective on Sex Differences in Autism Spectrum Disorders

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jamison, Rene; Bishop, Somer L.; Huerta, Marisela; Halladay, Alycia K.

    2017-01-01

    Research studies using existing samples of individuals with autism spectrum disorders have identified differences in symptoms between males and females. Differences are typically reported in school age and adolescence, with similarities in symptom presentation at earlier ages. However, existing studies on sex differences are significantly limited,…

  20. Sex and intrauterine growth restriction modify brain neurotransmitters profile of newborn piglets.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vázquez-Gómez, M; Valent, D; García-Contreras, C; Arroyo, L; Óvilo, C; Isabel, B; Bassols, A; González-Bulnes, A

    2016-12-01

    The current study aimed to determine, using a swine model of intrauterine growth restriction (IUGR), whether short- and long-term neurological deficiencies and interactive dysfunctions of Low Birth-Weight (LBW) offspring might be related to altered pattern of neurotransmitters. Hence, we compared the quantities of different neurotransmitters (catecholamines and indoleamines), which were determined by HPLC, at brain structures related to the limbic system (hippocampus and amygdala) in 14 LBW and 10 Normal Body-Weight (NBW) newborn piglets. The results showed, firstly, significant effects of sex on the NBW newborns, with females having higher dopamine (DA) concentrations than males. The IUGR processes affected DA metabolism, with LBW piglets having lower concentrations of noradrenaline at the hippocampus and higher concentrations of the DA metabolites, homovanillic acid (HVA), at both the hippocampus and the amygdala than NBW neonates. The effects of IUGR were modulated by sex; there were no significant differences between LBW and NBW females, but LBW males had higher HVA concentration at the amygdala and higher concentration of 5-hydroxyindoleacetic acid, the serotonin metabolite, at the hippocampus than NBW males. In conclusion, the present study shows that IUGR is mainly related to changes, modulated by sex, in the concentrations of catecholamine neurotransmitters, which are related to adaptation to physical activity and to essential cognitive functions such as learning, memory, reward-motivated behavior and stress. Copyright © 2016 ISDN. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  1. Behavioral stress alters corticolimbic microglia in a sex- and brain region-specific manner.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bollinger, Justin L; Collins, Kaitlyn E; Patel, Rushi; Wellman, Cara L

    2017-01-01

    Women are more susceptible to numerous stress-linked psychological disorders (e.g., depression) characterized by dysfunction of corticolimbic brain regions critical for emotion regulation and cognitive function. Although sparsely investigated, a number of studies indicate sex differences in stress effects on neuronal structure, function, and behaviors associated with these regions. We recently demonstrated a basal sex difference in- and differential effects of stress on- microglial activation in medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC). The resident immune cells of the brain, microglia are implicated in synaptic and dendritic plasticity, and cognitive-behavioral function. Here, we examined the effects of acute (3h/day, 1 day) and chronic (3h/day, 10 days) restraint stress on microglial density and morphology, as well as immune factor expression in orbitofrontal cortex (OFC), basolateral amygdala (BLA), and dorsal hippocampus (DHC) in male and female rats. Microglia were visualized, classified based on their morphology, and stereologically counted. Microglia-associated transcripts (CD40, iNOS, Arg1, CX3CL1, CX3CR1, CD200, and CD200R) were assessed in brain punches from each region. Expression of genes linked with cellular stress, neuroimmune state, and neuron-microglia communication varied between unstressed male and female rats in a region-specific manner. In OFC, chronic stress upregulated a wider variety of immune factors in females than in males. Acute stress increased microglia-associated transcripts in BLA in males, whereas chronic stress altered immune factor expression in BLA more broadly in females. In DHC, chronic stress increased immune factor expression in males but not females. Moreover, acute and chronic stress differentially affected microglial morphological activation state in male and female rats across all brain regions investigated. In males, chronic stress altered microglial activation in a pattern consistent with microglial involvement in stress

  2. Behavioral stress alters corticolimbic microglia in a sex- and brain region-specific manner

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bollinger, Justin L.; Collins, Kaitlyn E.; Patel, Rushi

    2017-01-01

    Women are more susceptible to numerous stress-linked psychological disorders (e.g., depression) characterized by dysfunction of corticolimbic brain regions critical for emotion regulation and cognitive function. Although sparsely investigated, a number of studies indicate sex differences in stress effects on neuronal structure, function, and behaviors associated with these regions. We recently demonstrated a basal sex difference in- and differential effects of stress on- microglial activation in medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC). The resident immune cells of the brain, microglia are implicated in synaptic and dendritic plasticity, and cognitive-behavioral function. Here, we examined the effects of acute (3h/day, 1 day) and chronic (3h/day, 10 days) restraint stress on microglial density and morphology, as well as immune factor expression in orbitofrontal cortex (OFC), basolateral amygdala (BLA), and dorsal hippocampus (DHC) in male and female rats. Microglia were visualized, classified based on their morphology, and stereologically counted. Microglia-associated transcripts (CD40, iNOS, Arg1, CX3CL1, CX3CR1, CD200, and CD200R) were assessed in brain punches from each region. Expression of genes linked with cellular stress, neuroimmune state, and neuron-microglia communication varied between unstressed male and female rats in a region-specific manner. In OFC, chronic stress upregulated a wider variety of immune factors in females than in males. Acute stress increased microglia-associated transcripts in BLA in males, whereas chronic stress altered immune factor expression in BLA more broadly in females. In DHC, chronic stress increased immune factor expression in males but not females. Moreover, acute and chronic stress differentially affected microglial morphological activation state in male and female rats across all brain regions investigated. In males, chronic stress altered microglial activation in a pattern consistent with microglial involvement in stress

  3. Neuroanatomical and Symptomatic Sex Differences in Individuals at Clinical High Risk for Psychosis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elisa Guma

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available Sex differences have been widely observed in clinical presentation, functional outcome and neuroanatomy in individuals with a first-episode of psychosis, and chronic patients suffering from schizophrenia. However, little is known about sex differences in the high-risk stages for psychosis. The present study investigated sex differences in cortical and subcortical neuroanatomy in individuals at clinical high risk (CHR for psychosis and healthy controls (CTL, and the relationship between anatomy and clinical symptoms in males at CHR. Magnetic resonance images were collected in 26 individuals at CHR (13 men and 29 CTLs (15 men to determine total and regional brain volumes and morphology, cortical thickness, and surface area (SA. Clinical symptoms were assessed with the brief psychiatric rating scale. Significant sex-by-diagnosis interactions were observed with opposite directions of effect in male and female CHR subjects relative to their same-sex controls in multiple cortical and subcortical areas. The right postcentral, left superior parietal, inferior parietal supramarginal, and angular gyri [<5% false discovery rate (FDR] were thicker in male and thinner in female CHR subjects compared with their same-sex CTLs. The same pattern was observed in the right superior parietal gyrus SA at the regional and vertex level. Using a recently developed surface-based morphology pipeline, we observed sex-specific shape differences in the left hippocampus (<5% FDR and amygdala (<10% FDR. Negative symptom burden was significantly higher in male compared with female CHR subjects (p = 0.04 and was positively associated with areal expansion of the left amygdala in males (<5% FDR. Some limitations of the study include the sample size, and data acquisition at 1.5 T. This study demonstrates neuroanatomical sex differences in CHR subjects, which may be associated with variations in symptomatology in men and women with psychotic symptoms.

  4. Trpv4 involvement in the sex differences in blood pressure regulation in spontaneously hypertensive rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Onishi, Makiko; Yamanaka, Ko; Miyamoto, Yasunori; Waki, Hidefumi; Gouraud, Sabine

    2018-04-01

    Arterial pressure (AP) is lower in premenopausal women than in men of a similar age. Premenopausal women exhibit a lower sympathetic activity and a greater baroreceptor reflex; however, mechanisms controlling sex differences in blood pressure regulation are not well understood. We hypothesized that different neuronal functions in the cardiovascular centers of the brains of men and women may contribute to the sex difference in cardiovascular homeostasis. Our previous studies on male spontaneously hypertensive rats (SHRs) and their normotensive counterparts, Wistar Kyoto (WKY) rats, revealed that the gene-expression profile of the nucleus tractus solitarius (NTS), a region of the medulla oblongata that is pivotal for regulating the set point of AP, is strongly associated with AP. Thus, we hypothesized that gene-expression profiles in the rat NTS are related to sex differences in AP regulation. Because female SHRs clearly exhibit lower AP than their male counterparts of a similar age, we investigated whether SHR NTS exhibits sex differences in gene expression by using microarray and RT-qPCR experiments. The transcript for transient receptor potential cation channel subfamily V member 4 ( Trpv4) was found to be upregulated in SHR NTS in females compared with that in males. The channel was expressed in neurons and glial cells within NTS. The TRPV4 agonist 4-alpha-phorbol-12,13-didecanoate (4α-PDD) decreased blood pressure when injected into NTS of rats. These findings suggest that altered TRPV4 expression might be involved in the sex differences in blood pressure regulation.

  5. Prefrontal cortex based sex differences in tinnitus perception: same tinnitus intensity, same tinnitus distress, different mood.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sven Vanneste

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Tinnitus refers to auditory phantom sensation. It is estimated that for 2% of the population this auditory phantom percept severely affects the quality of life, due to tinnitus related distress. Although the overall distress levels do not differ between sexes in tinnitus, females are more influenced by distress than males. Typically, pain, sleep, and depression are perceived as significantly more severe by female tinnitus patients. Studies on gender differences in emotional regulation indicate that females with high depressive symptoms show greater attention to emotion, and use less anti-rumination emotional repair strategies than males. METHODOLOGY: The objective of this study was to verify whether the activity and connectivity of the resting brain is different for male and female tinnitus patients using resting-state EEG. CONCLUSIONS: Females had a higher mean score than male tinnitus patients on the BDI-II. Female tinnitus patients differ from male tinnitus patients in the orbitofrontal cortex (OFC extending to the frontopolar cortex in beta1 and beta2. The OFC is important for emotional processing of sounds. Increased functional alpha connectivity is found between the OFC, insula, subgenual anterior cingulate (sgACC, parahippocampal (PHC areas and the auditory cortex in females. Our data suggest increased functional connectivity that binds tinnitus-related auditory cortex activity to auditory emotion-related areas via the PHC-sgACC connections resulting in a more depressive state even though the tinnitus intensity and tinnitus-related distress are not different from men. Comparing male tinnitus patients to a control group of males significant differences could be found for beta3 in the posterior cingulate cortex (PCC. The PCC might be related to cognitive and memory-related aspects of the tinnitus percept. Our results propose that sex influences in tinnitus research cannot be ignored and should be taken into account in functional

  6. Sex differences in prenatal epigenetic programming of stress pathways.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bale, Tracy L

    2011-07-01

    Maternal stress experience is associated with neurodevelopmental disorders including schizophrenia and autism. Recent studies have examined mechanisms by which changes in the maternal milieu may be transmitted to the developing embryo and potentially translated into programming of the epigenome. Animal models of prenatal stress have identified important sex- and temporal-specific effects on offspring stress responsivity. As dysregulation of stress pathways is a common feature in most neuropsychiatric diseases, molecular and epigenetic analyses at the maternal-embryo interface, especially in the placenta, may provide unique insight into identifying much-needed predictive biomarkers. In addition, as most neurodevelopmental disorders present with a sex bias, examination of sex differences in the inheritance of phenotypic outcomes may pinpoint gene targets and specific windows of vulnerability in neurodevelopment, which have been disrupted. This review discusses the association and possible contributing mechanisms of prenatal stress in programming offspring stress pathway dysregulation and the importance of sex.

  7. [Gender differences in cognitive functions and influence of sex hormones].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Torres, A; Gómez-Gil, E; Vidal, A; Puig, O; Boget, T; Salamero, M

    2006-01-01

    To review scientific evidence on gender differences in cognitive functions and influence of sex hormones on cognitive performance. Systematical search of related studies identified in Medline. Women outperform men on verbal fluency, perceptual speed tasks, fine motor skills, verbal memory and verbal learning. Men outperform women on visuospatial ability, mathematical problem solving and visual memory. No gender differences on attention and working memory are found. Researchers distinguish four methods to investigate hormonal influence on cognitive performance: a) patient with hormonal disorders; b) neuroimaging in individuals during hormone administration; c) in women during different phases of menstrual cycle, and d) in patients receiving hormonal treatment (idiopathic hypogonadotropic hypogonadism, postmenopausal women and transsexuals). The findings mostly suggest an influence of sex hormones on some cognitive functions, but they are not conclusive because of limitations and scarcity of the studies. There are gender differences on cognitive functions. Sex hormones seem to influence cognitive performance.

  8. Sex differences in the reciprocal behaviour of children with autism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Backer van Ommeren, Tineke; Koot, Hans M; Scheeren, Anke M; Begeer, Sander

    2017-08-01

    Differences in the social limitations of girls compared to boys on the autism spectrum are still poorly understood. Impaired social-emotional reciprocity is a core diagnostic criterion for an autism spectrum disorder. This study compares sex differences in reciprocal behaviour in children with autism spectrum disorder (32 girls, 114 boys) and in typically developing children (24 girls, 55 boys). While children with autism spectrum disorder showed clear limitations in reciprocal behaviour compared to typically developing children, sex differences were found only in the autism spectrum disorder group: girls with autism spectrum disorder had higher reciprocity scores than boys with autism spectrum disorder. However, compared to typically developing girls, girls with autism spectrum disorder showed subtle differences in reciprocal behaviour. The sex-specific response patterns in autism spectrum disorder can inform and improve the diagnostic assessment of autism in females.

  9. [Sex and gender: Two different scientific domains to be clarified].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fernández, Juan

    2010-05-01

    Nowadays, the word sex and its related terms (sexual differences, sexual roles and stereotypes), so common not long ago, seems to have been replaced by gender and its related terms (gender differences, gender roles and stereotypes). We can sometimes find both sex and gender sharing the same space in scientific articles, although referring to different domains. In this paper, I try to explain the need for a model that can integrate both of these complex domains of sex and gender, leading to two independent, although complementary, disciplines: Sexology and Genderology. In both cases, I start from a functional standpoint, which will give meaning to both disciplines' specificities, as it is meant to link contributions from different fields of knowledge. This approach can have consequences for research, education, the experience of women, men, and ambiguous individuals, and therapy.

  10. Public and Private Physical Affection Differences between Same-Sex and Different-Sex Couples: The Role of Perceived Marginalization

    OpenAIRE

    Amani El-Alayli; Erin Kent

    2011-01-01

    Despite its connection with relationship satisfaction, research on physical affection is scarce and fails to disentangle private and public displays of affection. It is important to examine both types if marginalized couples are less comfortable displaying affection publicly. The present study examined whether same-sex couples display less public (but not private) physical affection than different-sex couples due to stronger feelings of relationship marginalization. It also examined how publ...

  11. Public and Private Physical Affection Differences between Same-Sex and Different-Sex Couples: The Role of Perceived Marginalization

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Amani El-Alayli

    2011-12-01

    Full Text Available Despite its connection with relationship satisfaction, research on physical affection is scarce and fails to disentangle private and public displays of affection. It is important to examine both types if marginalized couples are less comfortable displaying affection publicly. The present study examined whether same-sex couples display less public (but not private physical affection than different-sex couples due to stronger feelings of relationship marginalization. It also examined how public/private affection and marginalization relate to relationship satisfaction. Women in committed same-sex and different-sex relationships completed surveys of public affection, private affection, marginalization, and relationship satisfaction online. As predicted, women in same-sex relationships displayed less public affection than those in different-sex relationships, an effect mediated by general societal marginalization. Both private and public affection predicted higher relationship satisfaction, whereas feelings of marginalization by friends/family predicted lower relationship satisfaction. We discuss implications for relationship counseling and propose new ways of looking at marginalization.

  12. Sex differences in stress regulation of arousal and cognition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bangasser, Debra A; Eck, Samantha R; Telenson, Alexander M; Salvatore, Madeleine

    2018-04-01

    There are sex differences in the prevalence and presentation of many psychiatric disorders. For example, posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and major depression are more common in women than men, and women with these disorders present with more hyperarousal symptoms than men. In contrast, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and schizophrenia are more common in men than women, and men with these disorders have increased cognitive deficits compared to women. A shared feature of the aforementioned psychiatric disorders is the contribution of stressful events to their onset and/or severity. Here we propose that sex differences in stress responses bias females towards hyperarousal and males towards cognitive deficits. Evidence from clinical and preclinical studies is detailed. We also describe underlying neurobiological mechanisms. For example, sex differences in stress receptor signaling and trafficking in the locus coeruleus-arousal center are detailed. In learning circuits, evidence for sex differences in dendritic morphology is provided. Finally, we describe how evaluating sex-specific mechanisms for responding to stress in female and male rodents can lead to better treatments for stress-related psychiatric disorders. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  13. Sex Differences in Stress Response Circuitry Activation Dependent on Female Hormonal Cycle

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goldstein, Jill M.; Jerram, Matthew; Abbs, Brandon; Whitfield-Gabrieli, Susan; Makris, Nikos

    2010-01-01

    Understanding sex differences in stress regulation has important implications for understanding basic physiological differences in the male and female brain and their impact on vulnerability to sex differences in chronic medical disorders associated with stress response circuitry. In this fMRI study, we demonstrated that significant sex differences in brain activity in stress response circuitry were dependent on women's menstrual cycle phase. Twelve healthy Caucasian premenopausal women were compared to a group of healthy men from the same population, based on age, ethnicity, education, and right-handedness. Subjects were scanned using negative valence/high arousal versus neutral visual stimuli that we demonstrated activated stress response circuitry (amygdala, hypothalamus, hippocampus, brainstem, orbitofrontal and medial prefrontal cortices (OFC and mPFC), and anterior cingulate gyrus (ACG). Women were scanned twice based on normal variation in menstrual cycle hormones (i.e., early follicular (EF) compared with late follicular-midcycle menstrual phases (LF/MC)). Using SPM8b, there were few significant differences in BOLD signal changes in men compared to EF women, except ventromedial (VMN) and lateral (LHA) hypothalamus, left amygdala, and ACG. In contrast, men exhibited significantly greater BOLD signal changes compared to LF/MC women on bilateral ACG and OFC, mPFC, LHA, VMN, hippocampus, and periaqueductal gray, with largest effect sizes in mPFC and OFC. Findings suggest that sex differences in stress response circuitry are hormonally regulated via the impact of subcortical brain activity on the cortical control of arousal, and demonstrate that females have been endowed with a natural hormonal capacity to regulate the stress response that differs from males. PMID:20071507

  14. Sex Differences in the Reciprocal Behaviour of Children with Autism

    Science.gov (United States)

    Backer van Ommeren, Tineke; Koot, Hans M.; Scheeren, Anke M.; Begeer, Sander

    2017-01-01

    Differences in the social limitations of girls compared to boys on the autism spectrum are still poorly understood. Impaired social-emotional reciprocity is a core diagnostic criterion for an autism spectrum disorder. This study compares sex differences in reciprocal behaviour in children with autism spectrum disorder (32 girls, 114 boys) and in…

  15. Sex Differences in L2 Vocabulary Learning Strategies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Catalan, Rosa Maria Jimenez

    2003-01-01

    Reports the results of a descriptive study on sex differences in the use of a second language. A questionnaire was administered to 581 Spanish-speaking students learning Basque and English as second language to answer the following question: Do male and female second language learners differ in the number and the range of vocabulary strategies…

  16. Sex Differences in Mathematics Performance among Senior High ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    This study explored sex differences in mathematics performance of students in the final year of high school and changes in these differences over a 3-year period in Ghana. A convenience sample of 182 students, 109 boys and 72 girls in three high schools in Ghana was used. Mathematics performance was assessed using ...

  17. Sex differences in the reciprocal behaviour of children with autism

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Backer van Ommeren, Tineke; Koot, Hans M; Scheeren, Anke M; Begeer, Sander

    2017-01-01

    Differences in the social limitations of girls compared to boys on the autism spectrum are still poorly understood. Impaired social-emotional reciprocity is a core diagnostic criterion for an autism spectrum disorder. This study compares sex differences in reciprocal behaviour in children with

  18. Sex Differences in Reasoning and Emotion about Altruism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mills, Rosemary S. L.; And Others

    1989-01-01

    Examines sex differences among 70 adults in the resolution of prosocial dilemmas involving self-sacrifice. Findings suggest that even when women and men make the same choices, they seem to think about and experience their choices in different ways. (MW)

  19. Job Orientation of Males and Females: Are Sex Differences Declining?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brenner, O. C.; Tomkiewicz, Joseph

    1979-01-01

    Sex differences in job orientation found by Manhardt (1972) were explored to determine if they still exist, or if a trend toward similarity as found in studies on traits and behaviors prevails. Implications for personnel managers in handling differences on job orientation of males and females are discussed. (Author/KC)

  20. Sexual Selection and the Evolution of Human Sex Differences

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David C. Geary

    2006-12-01

    Full Text Available Darwin’s (1871 theory of sexual selection and the associated mechanisms of intrasexual competition (e.g., male-male competition and intersexual choice (e.g., female choice of mates have guided the scientific study of sex differences in hundreds of non-human species. These mechanisms and several recent advances in our understanding of the evolution and expression of sex differences in non-human species are described. The usefulness of this theory for approaching the study human sex differences is illustrated with discussion of patterns of women’s mate preferences and choices and with discussion of men’s one-on-one and coalitional competition. A comparison of these aspects of intersexual choice and intrasexual competition in humans and non-human species is provided, as is discussion of cultural variation in the expression of these behaviors. cultural influences (Maccoby & Jacklin, 1974.

  1. Relevant sex appeals in advertising: Gender and commitment context differences

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Even J. Lanseng

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available This research investigates differences in men’s and women’s attitudes toward ads featuring product-relevant sex appeals. It is found that women, but not men, were more negative toward an ad featuring an attractive opposite-sex model when their commitment thoughts were heightened. Women were also more negative toward an ad with an attractive same-sex model in the presence of commitment thoughts, but only when they scored high on sociosexuality. Men appeared unaffected, regardless of their level of sociosexuality. Commitment thoughts were manipulated by two types of prime, a parenting prime (study1 and a romantic prime (study 2.Results are explained by differences in how men and women react to sexual material and by differences in men’s and women’s evolved mating preferences.

  2. Relevant Sex Appeals in Advertising: Gender and Commitment Context Differences.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lanseng, Even J

    2016-01-01

    This research investigates differences in men's and women's attitudes toward ads featuring product-relevant sex appeals. It is found that women, but not men, were more negative toward an ad featuring an attractive opposite-sex model when their commitment thoughts were heightened. Women were also more negative toward an ad with an attractive same-sex model in the presence of commitment thoughts, but only when they scored high on sociosexuality. Men appeared unaffected, regardless of their level of sociosexuality. Commitment thoughts were manipulated by two types of prime, a parenting prime (study1) and a romantic prime (study 2). Results are explained by differences in how men and women react to sexual material and by differences in men's and women's evolved mating preferences.

  3. Sex differences in health and mortality in Moscow and Denmark

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Oksuzyan, A; Shkolnikova, M; Vaupel, J W

    2014-01-01

    and a male advantage in self-rated health, physical functioning, and depression symptomatology. Only on cognitive tests males performed similarly to or worse than women. Nevertheless, Muscovite males had more than twice higher mortality at ages 55-69 years compared to Muscovite women, almost double the ratio......In high income countries females outlive men, although they generally report worse health, the so-called male-female health-survival paradox. Russia has one of the world's largest sex difference in life expectancy with a male disadvantage of more than 10 years. We compare components of the paradox...... between Denmark and Moscow by examining sex differences in mortality and several health measures. The Human Mortality Database and the Russian Fertility and Mortality Database were used to examine sex differences in all-cause death rates in Denmark, Russia, and Moscow in 2007-2008. Self-reported health...

  4. Genetic regulation of sex differences in songbirds and lizards

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wade, Juli

    2016-01-01

    Sex differences in the morphology of neural and peripheral structures related to reproduction often parallel the frequency of particular behaviours displayed by males and females. In a variety of model organisms, these sex differences are organized in development by gonadal steroids, which also act in adulthood to modulate behavioural expression and in some cases to generate parallel anatomical changes on a seasonal basis. Data collected from diverse species, however, suggest that changes in hormone availability are not sufficient to explain sex and seasonal differences in structure and function. This paper pulls together some of this literature from songbirds and lizards and considers the information in the broader context of taking a comparative approach to investigating genetic mechanisms associated with behavioural neuroendocrinology. PMID:26833833

  5. Sex differences in cryptogenic stroke with patent foramen ovale.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nedeltchev, Krassen; Wiedmer, Sebastian; Schwerzmann, Markus; Windecker, Stephan; Haefeli, Tobias; Meier, Bernhard; Mattle, Heinrich P; Arnold, Marcel

    2008-09-01

    Sex differences in patients with patent foramen ovale (PFO) and cryptogenic stroke have not been systematically analyzed. We aimed to determine sex influences on demographics, vascular risk factors, clinical manifestations, stroke location, and clinical outcome. One thousand two hundred eighty-eight consecutive patients with ischemic stroke or transient ischemic attack (TIA) were admitted to a single stroke center. All patients underwent a complete stroke workup including clinical examination, standard blood tests, cerebral and vascular imaging, transesophageal echocardiography, and 24-hour electrocardiography. In 500 patients, no definite etiology could be established (cryptogenic stroke/TIA). Of them, 167 patients (107 men and 60 women, mean age 52 +/- 13 years) had an PFO. The prevalence of PFO in patients with cryptogenic stroke or TIA was higher in men than in women (38% vs 28%, P = .014). Stroke severity and the prevalence of risk factors did not differ between the 2 sexes. There was an independent association between male sex and stroke location in the posterior cerebral circulation (OR 3.0, 95% CI 1.4-6.5, P = .006). Men and women did not differ in respect to PFO grade, prevalence of right-to-left shunt at rest, or coexistence of atrial septal aneurysm. Clinical outcome at 3 months was similar in both sexes. Patent foramen ovale was more prevalent in men than in women with cryptogenic stroke. There were no sex influences on age, risk factors, echocardiographic characteristics of PFO, or clinical outcome. Male sex was independently associated with stroke in the posterior cerebral circulation.

  6. Sex Differences in Kappa Opioid Receptor Function and Their Potential Impact on Addiction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chartoff, Elena H.; Mavrikaki, Maria

    2015-01-01

    Behavioral, biological, and social sequelae that lead to drug addiction differ between men and women. Our efforts to understand addiction on a mechanistic level must include studies in both males and females. Stress, anxiety, and depression are tightly linked to addiction, and whether they precede or result from compulsive drug use depends on many factors, including biological sex. The neuropeptide dynorphin (DYN), an endogenous ligand at kappa opioid receptors (KORs), is necessary for stress-induced aversive states and is upregulated in the brain after chronic exposure to drugs of abuse. KOR agonists produce signs of anxiety, fear, and depression in laboratory animals and humans, findings that have led to the hypothesis that drug withdrawal-induced DYN release is instrumental in negative reinforcement processes that drive addiction. However, these studies were almost exclusively conducted in males. Only recently is evidence available that there are sex differences in the effects of KOR activation on affective state. This review focuses on sex differences in DYN and KOR systems and how these might contribute to sex differences in addictive behavior. Much of what is known about how biological sex influences KOR systems is from research on pain systems. The basic molecular and genetic mechanisms that have been discovered to underlie sex differences in KOR function in pain systems may apply to sex differences in KOR function in reward systems. Our goals are to discuss the current state of knowledge on how biological sex contributes to KOR function in the context of pain, mood, and addiction and to explore potential mechanisms for sex differences in KOR function. We will highlight evidence that the function of DYN-KOR systems is influenced in a sex-dependent manner by: polymorphisms in the prodynorphin (pDYN) gene, genetic linkage with the melanocortin-1 receptor (MC1R), heterodimerization of KORs and mu opioid receptors (MORs), and gonadal hormones. Finally, we

  7. Sex differences in kappa opioid receptor function and their potential impact on addiction

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elena eChartoff

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available Behavioral, biological and social sequelae that lead to drug addiction differ between men and women. Our efforts to understand addiction on a mechanistic level must include studies in both males and females. Stress, anxiety, and depression are tightly linked to addiction, and whether they precede or result from compulsive drug use depends on many factors, including biological sex. The neuropeptide dynorphin (DYN, an endogenous ligand at kappa opioid receptors (KORs, is necessary for stress-induced aversive states and is upregulated in the brain after chronic exposure to drugs of abuse. KOR agonists produce signs of anxiety, fear, and depression in laboratory animals and humans, findings that have led to the hypothesis that drug withdrawal-induced DYN release is instrumental in negative reinforcement processes that drive addiction. However, these studies were almost exclusively conducted in males. Only recently is evidence available that there are sex differences in the effects of KOR activation on affective state. This review focuses on sex differences in DYN and KOR systems and how these might contribute to sex differences in addictive behavior. Much of what is known about how biological sex influences KOR systems is from research on pain systems. The basic molecular and genetic mechanisms that have been discovered to underlie sex differences in KOR function in pain systems may apply to sex differences in KOR function in reward systems. Our goals are to discuss the current state of knowledge on how biological sex contributes to KOR function in the context of pain,mood and addiction and to explore potential mechanisms for sex differences in KOR function. We will highlight evidence that the function of DYN-KOR systems is influenced in a sex-dependent manner by: polymorphisms in the prodynorphin (pDYN gene, genetic linkage with the melanocortin-1 receptor (MC1R, heterodimerization of KORs and mu opioid receptors (MORs, and gonadal hormones

  8. Sex Differences in Kappa Opioid Receptor Function and Their Potential Impact on Addiction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chartoff, Elena H; Mavrikaki, Maria

    2015-01-01

    Behavioral, biological, and social sequelae that lead to drug addiction differ between men and women. Our efforts to understand addiction on a mechanistic level must include studies in both males and females. Stress, anxiety, and depression are tightly linked to addiction, and whether they precede or result from compulsive drug use depends on many factors, including biological sex. The neuropeptide dynorphin (DYN), an endogenous ligand at kappa opioid receptors (KORs), is necessary for stress-induced aversive states and is upregulated in the brain after chronic exposure to drugs of abuse. KOR agonists produce signs of anxiety, fear, and depression in laboratory animals and humans, findings that have led to the hypothesis that drug withdrawal-induced DYN release is instrumental in negative reinforcement processes that drive addiction. However, these studies were almost exclusively conducted in males. Only recently is evidence available that there are sex differences in the effects of KOR activation on affective state. This review focuses on sex differences in DYN and KOR systems and how these might contribute to sex differences in addictive behavior. Much of what is known about how biological sex influences KOR systems is from research on pain systems. The basic molecular and genetic mechanisms that have been discovered to underlie sex differences in KOR function in pain systems may apply to sex differences in KOR function in reward systems. Our goals are to discuss the current state of knowledge on how biological sex contributes to KOR function in the context of pain, mood, and addiction and to explore potential mechanisms for sex differences in KOR function. We will highlight evidence that the function of DYN-KOR systems is influenced in a sex-dependent manner by: polymorphisms in the prodynorphin (pDYN) gene, genetic linkage with the melanocortin-1 receptor (MC1R), heterodimerization of KORs and mu opioid receptors (MORs), and gonadal hormones. Finally, we

  9. Differential responses of brain, gonad and muscle steroid levels to changes in social status and sex in a sequential and bidirectional hermaphroditic fish.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Varenka Lorenzi

    Full Text Available Sex steroids can both modulate and be modulated by behavior, and their actions are mediated by complex interactions among multiple hormone sources and targets. While gonadal steroids delivered via circulation can affect behavior, changes in local brain steroid synthesis also can modulate behavior. The relative steroid load across different tissues and the association of these levels with rates of behavior have not been well studied. The bluebanded goby (Lythrypnus dalli is a sex changing fish in which social status determines sexual phenotype. We examined changes in steroid levels in brain, gonad and body muscle at either 24 hours or 6 days after social induction of protogynous sex change, and from individuals in stable social groups not undergoing sex change. For each tissue, we measured levels of estradiol (E(2, testosterone (T and 11-ketotestosterone (KT. Females had more T than males in the gonads, and more E(2 in all tissues but there was no sex difference in KT. For both sexes, E(2 was higher in the gonad than in other tissues while androgens were higher in the brain. During sex change, brain T levels dropped while brain KT increased, and brain E(2 levels did not change. We found a positive relationship between androgens and aggression in the most dominant females but only when the male was removed from the social group. The results demonstrate that steroid levels are responsive to changes in the social environment, and that their concentrations vary in different tissues. Also, we suggest that rapid changes in brain androgen levels might be important in inducing behavioral and/or morphological changes associated with protogynous sex change.

  10. Sex differences in confidence influence patterns of conformity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cross, Catharine P; Brown, Gillian R; Morgan, Thomas J H; Laland, Kevin N

    2017-11-01

    Lack of confidence in one's own ability can increase the likelihood of relying on social information. Sex differences in confidence have been extensively investigated in cognitive tasks, but implications for conformity have not been directly tested. Here, we tested the hypothesis that, in a task that shows sex differences in confidence, an indirect effect of sex on social information use will also be evident. Participants (N = 168) were administered a mental rotation (MR) task or a letter transformation (LT) task. After providing an answer, participants reported their confidence before seeing the responses of demonstrators and being allowed to change their initial answer. In the MR, but not the LT, task, women showed lower levels of confidence than men, and confidence mediated an indirect effect of sex on the likelihood of switching answers. These results provide novel, experimental evidence that confidence is a general explanatory mechanism underpinning susceptibility to social influences. Our results have implications for the interpretation of the wider literature on sex differences in conformity. © 2016 The British Psychological Society.

  11. DIFFERENCES OF ANTROPOMETRICAL CHARACTERISTICS IN RELATION TO SEX OF PUPILS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Goran Gojković

    2010-09-01

    Full Text Available As per sample of 212 examinees at the age of 11 (±6 months at the fifth grade in Montenegrin elementary schools, it was used the system of 12 variables for the estimation of anthropometrical characteristis. The purpose of the examination was to establish differentiations between different students sex in the initial and final measuring. As for results given by using discriminant analysis and univariant analysis of variance on the anthropometrical student's status, it can be concluded that there's a statistical significant level in discrimination of subsamples of different sex.

  12. Stress amplifies sex differences in primate prefrontal profiles of gene expression.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Alex G; Hagenauer, Megan; Absher, Devin; Morrison, Kathleen E; Bale, Tracy L; Myers, Richard M; Watson, Stanley J; Akil, Huda; Schatzberg, Alan F; Lyons, David M

    2017-11-02

    Stress is a recognized risk factor for mood and anxiety disorders that occur more often in women than men. Prefrontal brain regions mediate stress coping, cognitive control, and emotion. Here, we investigate sex differences and stress effects on prefrontal cortical profiles of gene expression in squirrel monkey adults. Dorsolateral, ventrolateral, and ventromedial prefrontal cortical regions from 18 females and 12 males were collected after stress or no-stress treatment conditions. Gene expression profiles were acquired using HumanHT-12v4.0 Expression BeadChip arrays adapted for squirrel monkeys. Extensive variation between prefrontal cortical regions was discerned in the expression of numerous autosomal and sex chromosome genes. Robust sex differences were also identified across prefrontal cortical regions in the expression of mostly autosomal genes. Genes with increased expression in females compared to males were overrepresented in mitogen-activated protein kinase and neurotrophin signaling pathways. Many fewer genes with increased expression in males compared to females were discerned, and no molecular pathways were identified. Effect sizes for sex differences were greater in stress compared to no-stress conditions for ventromedial and ventrolateral prefrontal cortical regions but not dorsolateral prefrontal cortex. Stress amplifies sex differences in gene expression profiles for prefrontal cortical regions involved in stress coping and emotion regulation. Results suggest molecular targets for new treatments of stress disorders in human mental health.

  13. Hemispheric side of damage influences sex-related differences in smoking cessation in neurological patients.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gaznick, Natassia; Bechara, Antoine; Tranel, Daniel

    2014-01-01

    Patterns of smoking behavior vary between the sexes. There is evidence that decision making, which is one of the key "executive functions" necessary for making life-style modifications such as smoking cessation, is relatively lateralized to the right hemisphere in males and left hemisphere in females. In the current study, we examined whether the side of brain lesion has a differential effect on smoking behavior between the sexes. We hypothesized sex differences in smoking cessation based on lesion side. Participants were 49 males and 50 females who were smoking at the time of lesion onset. The outcome variable was abstinence from smoking (quit rate) at least one year post lesion. We found that in patients with left-hemisphere damage, quit rates were significantly higher in males than in females; however, in patients with right-hemisphere damage, quit rates were not statistically different. The findings support previous cognitive neuroscience literature showing that components of behavior responsible for maintaining addiction tend to be more strongly lateralized in males, whereas in females there is a more bilateral distribution. Our study provides further evidence for differences in lateralization of complex behavior between the sexes, which has significant implications for differences in treatment strategies between the sexes.

  14. Sex differences underlying orofacial varicella zoster associated pain in rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stinson, Crystal; Deng, Mohong; Yee, Michael B; Bellinger, Larry L; Kinchington, Paul R; Kramer, Phillip R

    2017-05-17

    Most people are initially infected with varicella zoster virus (VZV) at a young age and this infection results in chickenpox. VZV then becomes latent and reactivates later in life resulting in herpes zoster (HZ) or "shingles". Often VZV infects neurons of the trigeminal ganglia to cause ocular problems, orofacial disease and occasionally a chronic pain condition termed post-herpetic neuralgia (PHN). To date, no model has been developed to study orofacial pain related to varicella zoster. Importantly, the incidence of zoster associated pain and PHN is known to be higher in women, although reasons for this sex difference remain unclear. Prior to this work, no animal model was available to study these sex-differences. Our goal was to develop an orofacial animal model for zoster associated pain which could be utilized to study the mechanisms contributing to this sex difference. To develop this model VZV was injected into the whisker pad of rats resulting in IE62 protein expression in the trigeminal ganglia; IE62 is an immediate early gene in the VZV replication program. Similar to PHN patients, rats showed retraction of neurites after VZV infection. Treatment of rats with gabapentin, an agent often used to combat PHN, ameliorated the pain response after whisker pad injection. Aversive behavior was significantly greater for up to 7 weeks in VZV injected rats over control inoculated rats. Sex differences were also seen such that ovariectomized and intact female rats given the lower dose of VZV showed a longer affective response than male rats. The phase of the estrous cycle also affected the aversive response suggesting a role for sex steroids in modulating VZV pain. These results suggest that this rat model can be utilized to study the mechanisms of 1) orofacial zoster associated pain and 2) the sex differences underlying zoster associated pain.

  15. Sex differences in the outcome of juvenile social isolation on HPA axis function in rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pisu, M G; Garau, A; Boero, G; Biggio, F; Pibiri, V; Dore, R; Locci, V; Paci, E; Porcu, P; Serra, M

    2016-04-21

    Women are more likely than men to suffer from anxiety disorders and major depression. These disorders share hyperresponsiveness to stress as an etiological factor. Thus, sex differences in brain arousal systems and their regulation by chronic stress may account for the increased vulnerability to these disorders in women. Social isolation is a model of early life stress that results in neurobiological alterations leading to increased anxiety-like and depressive-like behaviors. Here we investigated the sex difference in the effects of post-weaning social isolation on acute stress sensitivity and behavior in rats. In both sexes, social isolation at weaning reduced basal levels of the neuroactive steroid allopregnanolone in the brain and of corticosterone in plasma. Moreover, acute stress increased plasma corticosterone levels in both group-housed and socially isolated male and female rats; however this effect was greater in male than female rats subjected to social isolation. Intriguingly, group-housed female rats showed no change in plasma and brain levels of allopregnanolone after acute foot-shock stress. The absence of stress-induced effects on allopregnanolone synthesis might be due to the physiologically higher levels of this hormone in females vs. males. Accordingly, increasing allopregnanolone levels in male rats blunted the response to foot-shock stress in these animals. Socially isolated male, but not female, rats also display depressive-like behavior and increased hippocampal brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF). The ovarian steroids could "buffer" the effect of this adverse experience in females on these parameters. Finally, the dexamethasone (DEX) suppression test indicated that the chronic stress associated with social isolation impairs feedback inhibition in both sexes in which an increase in the abundance of glucocorticoid receptors (GRs) in the hippocampus was found. Altogether, these results demonstrate that social isolation affects neuroendocrine

  16. Eye tracking, strategies, and sex differences in virtual navigation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Andersen, Nicolas E; Dahmani, Louisa; Konishi, Kyoko; Bohbot, Véronique D

    2012-01-01

    Reports of sex differences in wayfinding have typically used paradigms sensitive to the female advantage (navigation by landmarks) or sensitive to the male advantage (navigation by cardinal directions, Euclidian coordinates, environmental geometry, and absolute distances). The current virtual navigation paradigm allowed both men and women an equal advantage. We studied sex differences by systematically varying the number of landmarks. Eye tracking was used to quantify sex differences in landmark utilisation as participants solved an eight-arm radial maze task within different virtual environments. To solve the task, participants were required to remember the locations of target objects within environments containing 0, 2, 4, 6, or 8 landmarks. We found that, as the number of landmarks available in the environment increases, the proportion of time men and women spend looking at landmarks and the number of landmarks they use to find their way increases. Eye tracking confirmed that women rely more on landmarks to navigate, although landmark fixations were also associated with an increase in task completion time. Sex differences in navigational behaviour occurred only in environments devoid of landmarks and disappeared in environments containing multiple landmarks. Moreover, women showed sustained landmark-oriented gaze, while men's decreased over time. Finally, we found that men and women use spatial and response strategies to the same extent. Together, these results shed new light on the discrepancy in landmark utilisation between men and women and help explain the differences in navigational behaviour previously reported. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  17. Sex differences in jealousy: a contribution from attachment theory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Levy, Kenneth N; Kelly, Kristen M

    2010-02-01

    Studies have found that more men than women endorse sexual infidelity as more distressing than emotional infidelity, whereas more women than men endorse emotional infidelity as more distressing than sexual infidelity. Some evolutionary psychologists have proposed that this sex difference can be best conceptualized as reflecting evolution-based differences in parental investment that produce a need for paternity certainty among men and a need for male investment in offspring among women. Nonetheless, a conspicuous subset of men report emotional infidelity as more distressing than sexual infidelity. Current theorizing explains between-sex differences but not within-sex differences. We hypothesized that attachment-style differences may help to explain both between- and within-sex differences in jealousy. As hypothesized, dismissing avoidant participants reported more jealousy regarding sexual than emotional infidelity (64.8%), and secure participants, including secure men, reported more jealousy regarding emotional than sexual infidelity (77.3%), chi(2)(3, N = 411) = 45.03, p jealousy relationship by attachment style. Implications of an attachment perspective are discussed.

  18. Sex differences in the neurobiology of drug addiction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bobzean, Samara A M; DeNobrega, Aliza K; Perrotti, Linda I

    2014-09-01

    Epidemiological data demonstrate that while women report lower rates of drug use than men, the number of current drug users and abusers who are women continues to increase. In addition women progress through the phases of addiction differently than men; women transition from casual drug use to addiction faster, are more reactive to stimuli that trigger relapse, and have higher rates of relapse then men. Sex differences in physiological and psychological responses to drugs of abuse are well documented and it is well established that estrogen effects on dopamine (DA) systems are largely responsible for these sex differences. However, the downstream mechanisms that result from interactions between estrogen and the effects of drugs of abuse on the DA system are just beginning to be explored. Here we review the basic neurocircuitry which underlies reward and addiction; highlighting the neuroadaptive changes that occur in the mesolimbic dopamine reward and anti-reward/stress pathways. We propose that sex differences in addiction are due to sex differences in the neural systems which mediate positive and negative reinforcement and that these differences are modulated by ovarian hormones. This forms a neurobehavioral basis for the search for the molecular and cellular underpinnings that uniquely guide motivational behaviors and make women more vulnerable to developing and sustaining addiction than men. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  19. Spatiotemporal mapping of sex differences during attentional processing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Neuhaus, Andres H; Opgen-Rhein, Carolin; Urbanek, Carsten; Gross, Melanie; Hahn, Eric; Ta, Thi Minh Tam; Koehler, Simone; Dettling, Michael

    2009-09-01

    Functional neuroimaging studies have increasingly aimed at approximating neural substrates of human cognitive sex differences elicited by visuospatial challenge. It has been suggested that females and males use different behaviorally relevant neurocognitive strategies. In females, greater right prefrontal cortex activation has been found in several studies. The spatiotemporal dynamics of neural events associated with these sex differences is still unclear. We studied 22 female and 22 male participants matched for age, education, and nicotine with 29-channel-electroencephalogram recorded under a visual selective attention paradigm, the Attention Network Test. Visual event-related potentials (ERP) were topographically analyzed and neuroelectric sources were estimated. In absence of behavioral differences, ERP analysis revealed a novel frontal-occipital second peak of visual N100 that was significantly increased in females relative to males. Further, in females exclusively, a corresponding central ERP component at around 220 ms was found; here, a strong correlation between stimulus salience and sex difference of the central ERP component amplitude was observed. Subsequent source analysis revealed increased cortical current densities in right rostral prefrontal (BA 10) and occipital cortex (BA 19) in female subjects. This is the first study to report on a tripartite association between sex differences in ERPs, visual stimulus salience, and right prefrontal cortex activation during attentional processing. 2009 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

  20. Sex difference and Allee effects shape the dynamics of sex-structured invasions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shaw, Allison K; Kokko, Hanna; Neubert, Michael G

    2018-01-01

    The rate at which a population grows and spreads can depend on individual behaviour and interactions with others. In many species with two sexes, males and females differ in key life-history traits (e.g. growth, survival and dispersal), which can scale up to affect population rates of growth and spread. In sexually reproducing species, the mechanics of locating mates and reproducing successfully introduce further complications for predicting the invasion speed (spread rate), as both can change nonlinearly with density. Most models of population spread are based on one sex, or include limited aspects of sex differences. Here we ask whether and how the dynamics of finding mates interact with sex-specific life-history traits to influence the rate of population spread. We present a hybrid approach for modelling invasions of populations with two sexes that links individual-level mating behaviour (in an individual-based model) to population-level dynamics (in an integrodifference equation model). We find that limiting the amount of time during which individuals can search for mates causes a demographic Allee effect which can slow, delay, or even prevent an invasion. Furthermore, any sex-based asymmetries in life history or behaviour (skewed sex ratio, sex-biased dispersal, and sex-specific mating behaviours) amplify these effects. In contrast, allowing individuals to mate more than once ameliorates these effects, enabling polygynandrous populations to invade under conditions where monogamously mating populations would fail to establish. We show that details of individuals' mating behaviour can impact the rate of population spread. Based on our results, we propose a stricter definition of a mate-finding Allee effect, which is not met by the commonly used minimum mating function. Our modelling approach, which links individual- and population-level dynamics in a single model, may be useful for exploring other aspects of individual behaviour that are thought to impact the

  1. Sex differences in empathy and its relation to juvenile offending.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Broidy, Lisa; Cauffman, Elizabeth; Espelage, Dorothy L; Mazerolle, Paul; Piquero, Alex

    2003-10-01

    Implicit in most theoretical accounts of sex differences in offending is the assumption that females are less likely than males to engage in crime--especially serious, violent crime--in part because of their comparatively higher levels of concern for others and stronger affiliative ties. Much research suggests that significant sex differences in both empathy and serious offending emerge in adolescence, with females displaying notably higher levels of empathy and males engaging in notably higher levels of serious offending. However, there has been little empirical work assessing the degree to which sex differences in empathy among adolescents can account for sex differences in offending. This research uses data from a sample of adolescents attending public high schools in Philadelphia (n = 425) and a sample of adolescents incarcerated in the California Youth Authority (CYA) (n = 232) to examine the relation between empathy and serious offending. Results suggest that empathy acts as a protective factor for both males and females but that there are subtle differences among males and females in the relation between empathy and offending.

  2. Different association between renal hyperfiltration and mortality by sex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yoo, Kyung Don; Yoon, Hyung-Jin; Hwang, Seung-Sik; Heo, Nam Ju; Chin, Ho Jun; Yang, Seung Hee; Joo, Kwon Wook; Kim, Yon Su; Lee, Hajeong

    2017-10-01

    Renal hyperfiltration (RHF) is a marker of early kidney injury that was recently shown to be a novel marker of mortality. However, it has no clear definition. In this study, we suggested an age- and sex-adjusted RHF definition and explored the association between RHF and mortality by sex. We analyzed data from individuals receiving routine health examinations from 1995 to 2009. RHF was defined as an estimated glomerular filtration rate over the 95th percentile matched for age and sex. A total of 114 966 individuals were included. During the 75-month of observation period, 2559 (2.2%) participants died. Among those, 71.4% were men. Because sex and RHF had a significant interaction for mortality (P for interaction sex. RHF was related to lower body weight and a higher proportion of cigarette smoking in men, whereas these relationships were not found in women. In the Kaplan-Meier curve, RHF was associated with higher mortality rate than non-RHF in both sexes, but this relationship was more prominent in men. In the multivariate analysis, RHF remained as an independent risk factor for all-cause mortality even after adjustment for confounding in men (hazard ratio, 1.34; 95% confidence interval, 1.12-1.59; P = 0.001). In women, RHF was not associated with increased mortality. We demonstrated that RHF was a significant risk factor for mortality in men but not in women. The mechanisms and clinical implications of these different associations according to sex require a further clarification. © 2016 Asian Pacific Society of Nephrology.

  3. Sex differences in the hypothalamus in the different stages of human life

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Swaab, Dick F.; Chung, Wilson C. J.; Kruijver, Frank P. M.; Hofman, Michel A.; Hestiantoro, Andon

    2003-01-01

    Quite a number of structural and functional sex differences have been reported in the human hypothalamus and adjacent structures that may be related to not only reproduction, sexual orientation and gender identity, but also to the often pronounced sex differences in prevalence of psychiatric and

  4. School leadership, sex and gender: welcome to difference

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Krüger, M.L.

    2008-01-01

    The biological basis for differences between the sexes has become increasingly clear in recent years. The nature-nurture debate has made way for the view that the individual is a product of the interaction between genes and environment. For the world of school leadership this means that instead of

  5. Sex Differences in Social Perception in Children with ASD

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coffman, M. C.; Anderson, L. C.; Naples, A. J.; McPartland, J. C.

    2015-01-01

    Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is more common in males than females. An underrepresentation of females in the ASD literature has led to limited knowledge of differences in social function across the sexes. Investigations of face perception represent a promising target for understanding variability in social functioning between males and females.…

  6. Exploring Sex Differences in Worry with a Cognitive Vulnerability Model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zalta, Alyson K.; Chambless, Dianne L.

    2008-01-01

    A multivariate model was developed to examine the relative contributions of mastery, stress, interpretive bias, and coping to sex differences in worry. Rumination was incorporated as a second outcome variable to test the specificity of these associations. Participants included two samples of undergraduates totaling 302 men and 379 women. A path…

  7. Sex differences among recipients of benzodiazepines in Dutch general practice.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Waals, F.W. van der; Mohrs, J.; Foets, M.

    1993-01-01

    Objective: To analyse sex differences among recipients of benzodiazepines in Dutch general practice. Design-Study of consultations and associated interventions as recorded in the Dutch national survey of general practice. Setting: Practices of 45 general practitioners monitored during 1 April to 30

  8. Sex differences in chronic stress responses and Alzheimer's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yan, Yan; Dominguez, Sky; Fisher, Daniel W; Dong, Hongxin

    2018-02-01

    Clinical studies indicate that Alzheimer's disease (AD) disproportionately affects women in both disease prevalence and severity, but the mechanisms underlying this sex divergence are unknown. Though some have suggested this difference in risk is a reflection of known differences in longevity between men and women, mounting clinical and preclinical evidence supports women also having intrinsic susceptibilities towards the disease. While a number of potential risk factors have been hypothesized to affect these differences in risks, none have been definitively verified. In this review, we discuss a novel hypothesis whereby women's susceptibility to chronic stress also mediates increased risk for AD. As stress is a risk factor for AD, and women are twice as likely to develop mood disorders where stress is a major etiology, it is possible that sex dimorphisms in stress responses contribute to the increase in women with AD. In line with this, sex divergence in biochemical responses to stress have been noted along the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis and among known molecular effectors of AD, with crosstalk between these processes also being likely. In addition, activation of the cortical corticotrophin-releasing factor receptor 1 (CRF1) signaling pathway leads to distinct female-biased increases in molecules associated with AD pathogenesis. Therefore, the different biochemical responses to stress between women and men may represent an intrinsic, sex-dependent risk factor for AD.

  9. Sex-related differences in attention and memory

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rima Solianik

    2016-01-01

    Conclusions: Current study showed no sex differences in the mean values of cognition, whereas higher intra-individual variability of short-term memory and attention switching was identified in women, indicating that their performance was lower on these cognitive abilities.

  10. Functional sex differences in human primary auditory cortex

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ruytjens, Liesbet; Georgiadis, Janniko R.; Holstege, Gert; Wit, Hero P.; Albers, Frans W. J.; Willemsen, Antoon T. M.

    2007-01-01

    Background We used PET to study cortical activation during auditory stimulation and found sex differences in the human primary auditory cortex (PAC). Regional cerebral blood flow (rCBF) was measured in 10 male and 10 female volunteers while listening to sounds (music or white noise) and during a

  11. Sex Differences in Arab Children with Autism Spectrum Disorders

    Science.gov (United States)

    Amr, Mostafa; Raddad, Dahoud; El-Mehesh, Fatima; Mahmoud, El-Hassanin; El-Gilany, Abdel-Hady

    2011-01-01

    Although autism spectrum disorders (ASD) prevalence is higher in males than females in Arab countries, few studies address sex differences in autistic symptoms and coexiting behavioral problems. A total of 37 boys and 23 girls recruited from three Arab countries (Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Jordan) matched for age and IQ. They were compared using Indian…

  12. Sex differences in anthropometric variability among South African ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Studies have reported no sex differences in variability of anthropometric characteristics, except in skinfolds with males more varied than females. Whether this is true of South African rural children is not known. The purpose of this study was to investigate the potential sexual anthropometric variability and verify its presence ...

  13. Sex Differences in Judgments of Male and Female Role Stereotypes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Getz, Sandra K.; Herman, Jeanne B.

    This study tests whether or not there are sex differences in judgments of the success of various male and female lifestyles, and if so, what differential standards are applied to males and females. The most interesting result of this study is that college men and women use the same standards to judge the success of male lifestyles but different…

  14. Sex and Age Differences in the Risk Threshold for Delinquency

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wong, Thessa M. L.; Loeber, Rolf; Slotboom, Anne-Marie; Bijleveld, Catrien C. J. H.; Hipwell, Alison E.; Stepp, Stephanie D.; Koot, Hans M.

    2013-01-01

    This study examines sex differences in the risk threshold for adolescent delinquency. Analyses were based on longitudinal data from the Pittsburgh Youth Study (n = 503) and the Pittsburgh Girls Study (n = 856). The study identified risk factors, promotive factors, and accumulated levels of risks as predictors of delinquency and nondelinquency,…

  15. Race and Sex Differences in College Student Physical Activity Correlates

    Science.gov (United States)

    McArthur, Laura H.; Raedeke, Thomas D.

    2009-01-01

    Objectives: To assess sex/race differences on psychosocial correlates of physical activity among college students. Methods: Survey research protocol. Results: Students (n = 636) exercised an average of 3.5 days per week, with black females being the least active. Across subgroups, health/fitness was rated as the most important motive for exercise,…

  16. Sex Differences in Neural Processing of Language among Children

    Science.gov (United States)

    Burman, Douglas D.; Bitan, Tali; Booth, James R.

    2008-01-01

    Why females generally perform better on language tasks than males is unknown. Sex differences were here identified in children (ages 9-15) across two linguistic tasks for words presented in two modalities. Bilateral activation in the inferior frontal and superior temporal gyri and activation in the left fusiform gyrus of girls was greater than in…

  17. Sex Differences in the Manifestation of ADHD in Emerging Adults

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fedele, David A.; Lefler, Elizabeth K.; Hartung, Cynthia M.; Canu, Will H.

    2012-01-01

    Objective: Given the mixed literature in the area, the aim of the current study was to determine whether sex differences exist in inattention, hyperactivity, and impairment in college adults with ADHD. Method: Individuals from three universities were recruited for the study. Participants with (n = 164) and without ADHD (n = 710) completed on-line…

  18. Sex and gender differences in depression - proclivity in women

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ignacio Zarragoitía Alonso

    2013-04-01

    Full Text Available The article presents and analyzes the major factors involved in depression, taking into account those related to biological, psychological and social issues linked to sex and gender. Ultimately, these sex and gender-associated factors determine that the condition is present more often in women than in men, nearly doubling the cases. In addition, the article describes the singularities of depressive disorders in different reproductive periods when the disease acquires clinical specificity in accordance with sexual and hormonal functions. Finally, the way in which gender roles can intervene in how depression is approached in women vis-à-vis men is covered.

  19. Sex Difference in Testosterone Response to a Video Game Contest

    OpenAIRE

    Mazur, Allan; Susman, Elizabeth J.; Edelbrock, Sandy

    1997-01-01

    Testosterone (T) and cortisol (C) were assayed from saliva samples given by young men (n = 28) and women (n = 32) before, during, and after competing with a same-sex partner in a video game. The T response to the competition is different in each sex; the C response is the same. Male results confirm prior reports of a pre-contest rise in testosterone. Male results did not confirm previous findings that after a contest, the testosterone of winners is higher than that of losers, perhaps because ...

  20. Sex Differences in the Hepatic Cholesterol Sensing Mechanisms in Mice

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ingemar Björkhem

    2013-09-01

    Full Text Available Cholesterol is linked to many multifactorial disorders, including different forms of liver disease where development and severity depend on the sex. We performed a detailed analysis of cholesterol and bile acid synthesis pathways at the level of genes and metabolites combined with the expression studies of hepatic cholesterol uptake and transport in female and male mice fed with a high-fat diet with or without cholesterol. Lack of dietary cholesterol led to a stronger response of the sterol sensing mechanism in females, resulting in higher expression of cholesterogenic genes compared to males. With cholesterol in the diet, the genes were down-regulated in both sexes; however, males maintained a more efficient hepatic metabolic flux through the pathway. Females had higher content of hepatic cholesterol but this was likely not due to diminished excretion but rather due to increased synthesis and absorption. Dietary cholesterol and sex were not important for gallbladder bile acids composition. Neither sex up-regulated Cyp7a1 upon cholesterol loading and there was no compensatory up-regulation of Abcg5 or Abcg8 transporters. On the other hand, females had higher expression of the Ldlr and Cd36 genes. These findings explain sexual dimorphism of cholesterol metabolism in response to dietary cholesterol in a high-fat diet in mice, which contributes to understanding the sex-basis of cholesterol-associated liver diseases.

  1. Sex differences of troponin test performance in chest pain patients.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Slagman, Anna; Searle, Julia; Vollert, Jörn O; Storchmann, Harald; Büschenfelde, Dirk Meyer Zum; von Recum, Johannes; Vlasny, Daniela; Ale-Abaei, Angela; Koch, Matthias; Müller, Christian; Müller, Reinhold; Somasundaram, Rajan; Möckel, Martin

    2015-01-01

    Current guidelines recommend troponin as the preferred biomarker to diagnose acute myocardial infarction (AMI) irrespective of the patient's sex. Recent reports have shown that sex-specific cut-offs should be considered but studies investigating sex-differences in the diagnostic accuracy of cardiac troponins are sparse. To evaluate whether the diagnostic performance of cardiac troponin at admission (cTn) under routine conditions is influenced by patient's sex. Between 15th of February 2009 and 15th of February 2010, women (n=1648) and men (n=2305) who presented to the emergency department with chest pain (n=3954) were enrolled. The diagnostic performance of the routine, contemporary sensitive cTn assays (TnI; Stratus® CS, Siemens and TnT; Roche Diagnostics) at baseline for the diagnosis of non-ST-elevation myocardial infarction (NSTEMI) was analyzed. NSTEMI was diagnosed in 7.3% (n=287) of all patients. Men were more likely to be diagnosed with NSTEMI (8.8%; n=202) as compared to women (5.2%; n=85; psex, with a lower sensitivity and NPV in women. The definition and implementation of sex-specific cut-off values for cTn into clinical routine seems to be highly recommendable. Copyright © 2015. Published by Elsevier Ireland Ltd.

  2. Sex and sexual orientation differences in personality in China.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zheng, Lijun; Lippa, Richard A; Zheng, Yong

    2011-06-01

    Using data from an Internet survey, we assessed masculinity-femininity (self-ascribed masculinity-femininity [Self-MF], gender-related interests, instrumentality, expressiveness) and Big Five personality traits in a Chinese sample of 201 heterosexual men, 220 homosexual men, 353 heterosexual women, and 215 homosexual women. Sex differences and sexual orientation differences were largest for gender-related interests and Self-MF. Homosexual-heterosexual differences in emotional stability were opposite for men and women, supporting the "gender shift" over the "social stress" hypothesis. Sex and sexual orientation differences in gender-related interests, Self-MF, and emotional stability observed in China were consistent with those found in other countries, suggesting possible biological influences. In contrast, group differences in other traits were more variable, suggesting possible cultural influences.

  3. Sex differences in the association between gray matter volume and verbal creativity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shi, Baoguo; Xu, Li; Chen, Qunlin; Qiu, Jiang

    2017-08-02

    The explanation for why significant sex differences are found in creativity has become an increasingly important topic. The current study applied a cognitive neuroscience perspective and voxel-based morphometry to investigate the sex differences for the association between verbal creativity and gray matter volume (GMV) in a large sample of healthy adults from the Chinese Mainland (163 men and 193 women). Furthermore, we sought to determine which brain regions are responsible for these differences. Our behavioral results showed a significant sex difference. Specifically, women scored higher than men on originality. The voxel-based morphometry results indicated that the relationship between originality and GMV differed between men and women in the left temporo-occipital junction. Higher originality scores in women were associated with more GMV. In contrast, higher originality scores in men were related to less GMV. These findings suggest the left temporo-occipital junction GMV plays a unique role in the sex differences in verbal creativity because women usually surpass men in semantic processing, which is the major function of the left temporal region.

  4. Sex differences in humor processing: An event-related potential study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chang, Yi-Tzu; Ku, Li-Chuan; Chen, Hsueh-Chih

    2018-02-01

    Numerous behavioral studies and a handful of functional neuroimaging studies have reported sex differences in humor. However, no study to date has examined differences in the time-course of brain activity during multistage humor processing between the sexes. The purpose of this study was to compare real-time dynamics related to humor processing between women and men, with reference to a proposed three-stage model (involving incongruity detection, incongruity resolution, and elaboration stages). Forty undergraduate students (20 women) underwent event-related potential recording while subjectively rating 30 question-answer-type jokes and 30 question-answer-type statements in a random order. Sex differences were revealed by analyses of the mean amplitudes of difference waves during a specific time window between 1000 and 1300 ms poststimulus onset (P1000-1300). This indicates that women recruited more mental resources to integrate cognitive and emotional components at this late stage. In contrast, men recruited more automated processes during the transition from the cognitive operations of the incongruity resolution stage to the emotional response of the humor elaboration stage. Our results suggest that sex differences in humor processing lie in differences in the integration of cognitive and emotional components, which are closely linked and interact reciprocally, particularly in women. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  5. Sex Differences in Behavioral Outcomes Following Temperature Modulation During Induced Neonatal Hypoxic Ischemic Injury in Rats

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Amanda L. Smith

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available Neonatal hypoxia ischemia (HI; reduced oxygen and/or blood flow to the brain can cause various degrees of tissue damage, as well as subsequent cognitive/behavioral deficits such as motor, learning/memory, and auditory impairments. These outcomes frequently result from cardiovascular and/or respiratory events observed in premature infants. Data suggests that there is a sex difference in HI outcome, with males being more adversely affected relative to comparably injured females. Brain/body temperature may play a role in modulating the severity of an HI insult, with hypothermia during an insult yielding more favorable anatomical and behavioral outcomes. The current study utilized a postnatal day (P 7 rodent model of HI injury to assess the effect of temperature modulation during injury in each sex. We hypothesized that female P7 rats would benefit more from lowered body temperatures as compared to male P7 rats. We assessed all subjects on rota-rod, auditory discrimination, and spatial/non-spatial maze tasks. Our results revealed a significant benefit of temperature reduction in HI females as measured by most of the employed behavioral tasks. However, HI males benefitted from temperature reduction as measured on auditory and non-spatial tasks. Our data suggest that temperature reduction protects both sexes from the deleterious effects of HI injury, but task and sex specific patterns of relative efficacy are seen.

  6. Sex differences in behavioral outcomes following temperature modulation during induced neonatal hypoxic ischemic injury in rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, Amanda L; Garbus, Haley; Rosenkrantz, Ted S; Fitch, Roslyn Holly

    2015-05-22

    Neonatal hypoxia ischemia (HI; reduced oxygen and/or blood flow to the brain) can cause various degrees of tissue damage, as well as subsequent cognitive/behavioral deficits such as motor, learning/memory, and auditory impairments. These outcomes frequently result from cardiovascular and/or respiratory events observed in premature infants. Data suggests that there is a sex difference in HI outcome, with males being more adversely affected relative to comparably injured females. Brain/body temperature may play a role in modulating the severity of an HI insult, with hypothermia during an insult yielding more favorable anatomical and behavioral outcomes. The current study utilized a postnatal day (P) 7 rodent model of HI injury to assess the effect of temperature modulation during injury in each sex. We hypothesized that female P7 rats would benefit more from lowered body temperatures as compared to male P7 rats. We assessed all subjects on rota-rod, auditory discrimination, and spatial/non-spatial maze tasks. Our results revealed a significant benefit of temperature reduction in HI females as measured by most of the employed behavioral tasks. However, HI males benefitted from temperature reduction as measured on auditory and non-spatial tasks. Our data suggest that temperature reduction protects both sexes from the deleterious effects of HI injury, but task and sex specific patterns of relative efficacy are seen.

  7. Absence of sex differences in mental rotation performance in autism spectrum disorder.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rohde, Melanie S; Georgescu, Alexandra L; Vogeley, Kai; Fimmers, Rolf; Falter-Wagner, Christine M

    2017-08-01

    Mental rotation is one of the most investigated cognitive functions showing consistent sex differences. The 'Extreme Male Brain' hypothesis attributes the cognitive profile of individuals with autism spectrum disorder to an extreme version of the male cognitive profile. Previous investigations focused almost exclusively on males with autism spectrum disorder with only limited implications for affected females. This study is the first testing a sample of 12 female adults with high-functioning autism spectrum disorder compared to 14 males with autism spectrum disorder, 12 typically developing females and 14 typically developing males employing a computerised version of the mental rotation test. Reaction time and accuracy served as dependent variables. Their linear relationship with degree of rotation allows separation of rotational aspects of the task, indicated by slopes of the psychometric function, and non-rotational aspects, indicated by intercepts of the psychometric function. While the typical and expected sex difference for rotational task aspects was corroborated in typically developing individuals, no comparable sex difference was found in autism spectrum disorder individuals. Autism spectrum disorder and typically developing individuals did not differ in mental rotation performance. This finding does not support the extreme male brain hypothesis of autism.

  8. Gender and sex differences in job status and hypertension.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clougherty, Jane E; Eisen, Ellen A; Slade, Martin D; Kawachi, Ichiro; Cullen, Mark R

    2011-01-01

    Studies have shown greater health risks associated with blue-collar manufacturing employment for women than men. It remains challenging, however, to distinguish gendered job status (affected by family composition and other personal characteristics) from sex-linked biological differences influencing physiological response to workplace physical hazards. We examined the effects of hourly (blue-collar) status on incident hypertension among men and women, using health claims data for 14, 618 white- and blue-collar aluminium manufacturing employees in eight US states. To explore gender differences in job status, we developed sex-stratified propensity score models identifying key socioeconomic predictors of hourly status for men and women. To examine the effects of hourly employment on hypertension risk, after adjusting for gender differences in job status, we applied time-weighted logistic regression models, stratified by propensity score, with additional adjustment for socioeconomic confounders. Family structure (partnership, parity) influenced job status for both sexes; single mothers were more likely to hold hourly jobs (OR 2.02; 95% CI 1.37 to 2.97) and partnered men with children less likely (OR 0.68; 95% CI 0.56 to 0.83). Education, age at hire and race influenced job status for both sexes. The effect of hourly status on hypertension was significant only among women predicted to be hourly (OR 1.78; 95% CI 1.34 to 2.35). Our results indicate significant risks of hypertension associated with hourly status for women, possibly exacerbated by sociodemographic factors predicting hourly status (eg, single parenthood, low education). Greater attention to gender differences in job status, and finer exploration of sex-linked biological differences influencing responsivity to workplace exposures, is warranted.

  9. Sex differences in drug use among polysubstance users.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lewis, Ben; Hoffman, Lauren A; Nixon, Sara Jo

    2014-12-01

    Available evidence indicates women with substance use disorders may experience more rapid progression through usage milestones (telescoping). The few investigations of sex differences in treatment-seeking populations often focus on single substances and typically do not account for significant polysubstance abuse. The current study examined sex differences in a heterogeneous sample of treatment seeking polysubstance users. We examined patterns of drug use, age at drug use milestones (e.g., initial use, regular use), and progression rates between milestones. Nicotine and alcohol use were also evaluated. Participants (n = 543; 288 women) completed personal histories of substance use, including chronicity, frequency, and regularity, as well as inventories assessing affect, and intellectual ability. Rates of drug use and milestone ages varied by sex and specific drug. Analyses suggested pronounced telescoping effects for pain medication and marijuana, with women progressing more rapidly through usage milestones. Our data were generally supportive of telescoping effects, although considerable variance in progression measures was noted. The contrast between the marked telescoping observed in pain medication use and the absence of telescoping in other opioids was of particular interest. The discrepancy in telescoping effects, despite shared pharmacologies, suggests the need for further work examining underlying psychosocial factors. These results highlight that the specific sample population, substance, and outcome measure should be carefully considered when interpreting sex differences in substance use. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  10. Sex differences in partner preferences in humans and animals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Balthazart, Jacques

    2016-02-19

    A large number of morphological, physiological and behavioural traits are differentially expressed by males and females in all vertebrates including humans. These sex differences, sometimes, reflect the different hormonal environment of the adults, but they often remain present after subjects of both sexes are placed in the same endocrine conditions following gonadectomy associated or not with hormonal replacement therapy. They are then the result of combined influences of organizational actions of sex steroids acting early during development, or genetic differences between the sexes, or epigenetic mechanisms differentially affecting males and females. Sexual partner preference is a sexually differentiated behavioural trait that is clearly controlled in animals by the same type of mechanisms. This is also probably true in humans, even if critical experiments that would be needed to obtain scientific proof of this assertion are often impossible for pragmatic or ethical reasons. Clinical, epidemiological and correlative studies provide, however, converging evidence strongly suggesting, if not demonstrating, that endocrine, genetic and epigenetic mechanisms acting during the pre- or perinatal life control human sexual orientation, i.e. homosexuality versus heterosexuality. Whether they interact with postnatal psychosexual influences remains, however, unclear at present. © 2016 The Author(s).

  11. Sex differences in sensorimotor mu rhythms during selective attentional processing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Popovich, C; Dockstader, C; Cheyne, D; Tannock, R

    2010-12-01

    We used magnetoencephalography to investigate the effect of directed attention on sensorimotor mu (8-12 Hz) response (mu reactivity) to non-painful electrical stimulation of the median nerve in healthy adults. Mu desynchronization in the 10-12 Hz bandwidth is typically observed during higher-order cognitive functions including selective attentional processing of sensorimotor information (Pfurtscheller, Neuper, & Krauz, 2000). We found attention-related sex differences in mu reactivity, with females showing (i) prolonged mu desynchrony when attending to somatosensory stimuli, (ii) attentional modulation of the mu response based on whether attention was directed towards or away from somatosensory stimuli, which was absent in males, and (iii) a trend for greater neuronal excitability of the primary somatosensory region suggesting greater physiological responsiveness to sensory stimulation overall. Our findings suggest sex differences in attentional control strategies when processing somatosensory stimuli, whose salience may be greater for females. These sex differences in attention to somatosensory stimuli may help elucidate the well-documented sex biases in pain processing wherein females typically report greater sensitivity to experimental and clinical pain. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  12. Reconsidering evolved sex differences in jealousy: comment on Harris (2003).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sagarin, Brad J

    2005-01-01

    In a recent article, Harris (2003) concluded that the data do not support the existence of evolved sex differences in jealousy. Harris' review correctly identifies fatal flaws in three lines of evidence (spousal abuse, homicide, morbid jealousy), but her criticism of two other lines of evidence (self-report responses, psychophysiological measures) is based, in part, on a mischaracterization of the evolutionary psychological theory and a misunderstanding of the empirical implications of the theory. When interpreted according to the correct criterion (i.e., an interaction between sex and infidelity type), self-report studies (both forced-choice and non-forced choice) offer strong support for the existence of sex differences in jealousy. Psychophysiological data also offer some support, although these data are weakened by validity-related concerns. In addition, some refutational evidence cited by Harris (responses to real infidelity, responses under cognitive load) actually does not refute the theory. An integrative model that describes how jealousy might result from the interaction of sociocultural variables and evolved sex differences and suggestions for future research directions are discussed.

  13. The Sex Determination Gene transformer Regulates Male-Female Differences in Drosophila Body Size.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rideout, Elizabeth J; Narsaiya, Marcus S; Grewal, Savraj S

    2015-12-01

    Almost all animals show sex differences in body size. For example, in Drosophila, females are larger than males. Although Drosophila is widely used as a model to study growth, the mechanisms underlying this male-female difference in size remain unclear. Here, we describe a novel role for the sex determination gene transformer (tra) in promoting female body growth. Normally, Tra is expressed only in females. We find that loss of Tra in female larvae decreases body size, while ectopic Tra expression in males increases body size. Although we find that Tra exerts autonomous effects on cell size, we also discovered that Tra expression in the fat body augments female body size in a non cell-autonomous manner. These effects of Tra do not require its only known targets doublesex and fruitless. Instead, Tra expression in the female fat body promotes growth by stimulating the secretion of insulin-like peptides from insulin producing cells in the brain. Our data suggest a model of sex-specific growth in which body size is regulated by a previously unrecognized branch of the sex determination pathway, and identify Tra as a novel link between sex and the conserved insulin signaling pathway.

  14. The Sex Determination Gene transformer Regulates Male-Female Differences in Drosophila Body Size.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elizabeth J Rideout

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available Almost all animals show sex differences in body size. For example, in Drosophila, females are larger than males. Although Drosophila is widely used as a model to study growth, the mechanisms underlying this male-female difference in size remain unclear. Here, we describe a novel role for the sex determination gene transformer (tra in promoting female body growth. Normally, Tra is expressed only in females. We find that loss of Tra in female larvae decreases body size, while ectopic Tra expression in males increases body size. Although we find that Tra exerts autonomous effects on cell size, we also discovered that Tra expression in the fat body augments female body size in a non cell-autonomous manner. These effects of Tra do not require its only known targets doublesex and fruitless. Instead, Tra expression in the female fat body promotes growth by stimulating the secretion of insulin-like peptides from insulin producing cells in the brain. Our data suggest a model of sex-specific growth in which body size is regulated by a previously unrecognized branch of the sex determination pathway, and identify Tra as a novel link between sex and the conserved insulin signaling pathway.

  15. Sex differences in microRNA regulation of gene expression: no smoke, just miRs

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Morgan Christopher P

    2012-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Males and females differ widely in morphology, physiology, and behavior leading to disparities in many health outcomes, including sex biases in the prevalence of many neurodevelopmental disorders. However, with the exception of a relatively small number of genes on the Y chromosome, males and females share a common genome. Therefore, sexual differentiation must in large part be a product of the sex biased expression of this shared genetic substrate. microRNAs (miRs are small non-coding RNAs involved in the post-transcriptional regulation of up to 70% of protein-coding genes. The ability of miRs to regulate such a vast amount of the genome with a high degree of specificity makes them perfectly poised to play a critical role in programming of the sexually dimorphic brain. This review describes those characteristics of miRs that make them particularly amenable to this task, and examines the influences of both the sex chromosome complement as well as gonadal hormones on their regulation. Exploring miRs in the context of sex differences in disease, particularly in sex-biased neurodevelopmental disorders, may provide novel insight into the pathophysiology and potential therapeutic targets in disease treatment and prevention.

  16. Sex Differences in Money Pathology in the General Population.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Furnham, Adrian; von Stumm, Sophie; Fenton-O'Creevy, Mark

    This study examined sex differences in money beliefs and behaviours. Over 100,000 British participants completed two measures online, one of which assessed "money pathology" (Forman in Mind over money, Doubleday, Toronto, 1987), and the other four "money types", based on the emotional associations of money (Furnham et al. in Personal Individ Differ, 52:707-711, 2012). Nearly all measures showed significant sex differences with medium to large effect sizes, and with females exhibiting more "money pathology" than males. The biggest difference on the money types was on money being associated with generosity (money representing love) where men scored much lower than females, and autonomy (money representing freedom) where men scored higher than women. For men, more than women, money represented Power and Security. Men were more likely to be Hoarders while women did more emotional regulatory purchasing. Implications and limitations of this study are discussed.

  17. Human Performance: Sex Differences and the Influence of the Menstrual Cycle (A Selected Bibliography)

    Science.gov (United States)

    1978-05-01

    and Therapy , 1970, 8, 353-366. 20. Singer, G., & Montgomery, R. B. Comment on roles of activation and inhibition in sex differences in cognitive...preference, and the sex difference. Sex Roles, 1975,1, 15-32. 13. Nielsen, J. M., & Doyle, P. T. Sex-role sterotypes of feminists and nonfeminists. Sex Roles

  18. Comment on "The effect of same-sex marriage laws on different-sex marriage: evidence from the Netherlands".

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dinno, Alexis

    2014-12-01

    In the recent Demography article titled "The Effect of Same-Sex Marriage Laws on Different-Sex Marriage: Evidence From the Netherlands," Trandafir attempted to answer the question, Are rates of opposite sex marriage affected by legal recognition of same-sex marriages? The results of his approach to statistical inference-looking for evidence of a difference in rates of opposite-sex marriage-provide an absence of evidence of such effects. However, the validity of his conclusion of no causal relationship between same-sex marriage laws and rates of opposite-sex marriage is threatened by the fact that Trandafir did not also look for equivalence in rates of opposite-sex marriage in order to provide evidence of an absence of such an effect. Equivalence tests in combination with difference tests are introduced and presented in this article as a more valid inferential approach to the substantive question Trandafir attempted to answer.

  19. Sex Differences in Feelings of Guilt Arising from Infidelity

    OpenAIRE

    Maryanne Fisher; Martin Voracek; P. Vivien Rekkas; Anthony Cox

    2008-01-01

    Although there is extensive literature regarding sex differences in jealousy due to infidelity, guilt resulting from infidelity remains unexplored. We hypothesize that men will feel guiltier from imagined emotional rather than sexual infidelity, as it is most important for their partner's reproductive success. Similarly, we predict that women will feel more guilt from imagined sexual rather than emotional infidelity. The findings indicate a different pattern; men feel guiltier following sexua...

  20. Can the sex differences in disgust sensitivity account for the sex differences in blood-injection-injury fears?

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Olatunji, BO; Arrindell, WA; Lohr, JM

    Recent research has shown a positive relationship between disgust sensitivity and blood-injection-injury (BII) fears. This line of research has also found that females report higher levels of BII fears and disgust sensitivity than males. The present study sought to determine if the sex difference in

  1. Sex differences in contaminant concentrations of fish: a synthesis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Madenjian, Charles P.; Rediske, Richard R.; Krabbenhoft, David P.; Stapanian, Martin A.; Chernyak, Sergei M.; O'Keefe, James P.

    2016-01-01

    Comparison of whole-fish polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) and total mercury (Hg) concentrations in mature males with those in mature females may provide insights into sex differences in behavior, metabolism, and other physiological processes. In eight species of fish, we observed that males exceeded females in whole-fish PCB concentration by 17 to 43%. Based on results from hypothesis testing, we concluded that these sex differences were most likely primarily driven by a higher rate of energy expenditure, stemming from higher resting metabolic rate (or standard metabolic rate (SMR)) and higher swimming activity, in males compared with females. A higher rate of energy expenditure led to a higher rate of food consumption, which, in turn, resulted in a higher rate of PCB accumulation. For two fish species, the growth dilution effect also made a substantial contribution to the sex difference in PCB concentrations, although the higher energy expenditure rate for males was still the primary driver. Hg concentration data were available for five of the eight species. For four of these five species, the ratio of PCB concentration in males to PCB concentration in females was substantially greater than the ratio of Hg concentration in males to Hg concentration in females. In sea lamprey (Petromyzon marinus), a very primitive fish, the two ratios were nearly identical. The most plausible explanation for this pattern was that certain androgens, such as testosterone and 11-ketotestosterone, enhanced Hg-elimination rate in males. In contrast, long-term elimination of PCBs is negligible for both sexes. According to this explanation, males ingest Hg at a higher rate than females, but also eliminate Hg at a higher rate than females, in fish species other than sea lamprey. Male sea lamprey do not possess either of the above-specified androgens. These apparent sex differences in SMRs, activities, and Hg-elimination rates in teleost fishes may also apply, to some degree, to higher

  2. Sex differences in common pain events: expectations and anchors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Robinson, Michael E; Gagnon, Christine M; Dannecker, Erin A; Brown, Jennifer L; Jump, Rebecca L; Price, Donald D

    2003-02-01

    This study examined (1) the effects of sex-related stereotypes in commonly experienced, potentially painful events and (2) differences in events representing the worst pain sensation imaginable for the typical woman and the typical man. Undergraduates (63 women and 54 men) completed the Situational Pain Questionnaire as the typical woman would and as the typical man would. The participants also answered 2 open-ended questions regarding the worst pain sensation imaginable for the typical woman and for the typical man. Our findings demonstrate that sex-related stereotypes extend to common pain events and that men and women expected that men would report less pain for common pain events than women. This suggests a gender-role related learning history that is relatively consistent for both sexes. The worst pain sensation imaginable was perceived to be different for typical men and women. Both sexes chose injury as the class of events men would find most painful and childbirth and menstrual pain as the class of events women would find most painful. Implications of this finding for common pain scaling approaches are discussed. The results of this study were obtained from a fairly uniform group of undergraduate men and women, which may limit the generalizability of our findings.

  3. Differences in Religiousness in Opposite-Sex and Same-Sex Twins in a Secular Society.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ahrenfeldt, Linda J; Lindahl-Jacobsen, Rune; Möller, Sören; Christensen, Kaare; Hvidtjørn, Dorte; Hvidt, Niels Christian

    2016-02-01

    Sex differences in religion are well known, with females generally being more religious than males, and shared environmental factors have been suggested to have a large influence on religiousness. Twins from opposite-sex (OS) and same-sex (SS) pairs may differ because of a dissimilar psycho-social rearing environment and/or because of different exposures to hormones in utero. We hypothesized that OS females may display more masculine patterns of religiousness and, vice versa, that OS males may display more feminine patterns. We used a web-based survey conducted in Denmark, which is a secular society. The survey included 2,997 twins aged 20-40 years, identified through the population-based Danish Twin Registry. We applied la Cour and Hvidt's adaptation of Fishman's three conceptual dimensions of meaning: Cognition, Practice, and Importance, and we used Pargament's measure of religious coping (RCOPE) for the assessment of positive and negative religious coping patterns. Differences between OS and SS twins were investigated using logistic regression for each sex. The analyses were adjusted for dependence within twin pairs. No significant differences in religiousness and religious coping were found for OS and SS twins except that more OS than SS females were members of the Danish National Evangelical Lutheran Church and fewer OS than SS females were Catholic, Muslim, or belonged to other religious denominations. Moreover, OS males at age 12 had higher rates of church attendance than did SS males. This study did not provide evidence for masculinization of female twins with male co-twins with regard to religiousness. Nor did it show any significant differences between OS and SS males except from higher rates of church attendance in childhood among males with female co-twins.

  4. Students’ Spatial Performance: Cognitive Style and Sex Differences

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hanifah, U.; Juniati, D.; Siswono, T. Y. E.

    2018-01-01

    This study aims at describing the students’ spatial abilities based on cognitive styles and sex differences. Spatial abilities in this study include 5 components, namely spatial perception, spatial visualization, mental rotation, spatial relations, and spatial orientation. This research is descriptive research with qualitative approach. The subjects in this research were 4 students of junior high school, there were 1 male FI, 1 male FD, 1 female FI, and 1 female FI. The results showed that there are differences in spatial abilities of the four subjects that are on the components of spatial visualization, mental rotation, and spatial relations. The differences in spatial abilities were found in methods / strategies used by each subject to solve each component problem. The differences in cognitive styles and sex suggested different choice of strategies used to solve problems. The male students imagined the figures but female students needed the media to solve the problem. Besides sex, the cognitive style differences also have an effect on solving a problem. In addition, FI students were not affected by distracting information but FD students could be affected by distracting information. This research was expected to contribute knowledge and insight to the readers, especially for math teachers in terms of the spatial ability of the students so that they can optimize their students’ spatial ability.

  5. Molecular and cellular sex differences at the intersection of stress and arousal.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Valentino, Rita J; Reyes, Beverly; Van Bockstaele, Elisabeth; Bangasser, Debra

    2012-01-01

    Elucidating the mechanisms underlying sex biases in the prevalence and severity of diseases can advance our understanding of their pathophysiological basis and serve as a guide for developing treatments. A well-established sex difference in psychiatry is the higher incidence of mood and anxiety disorders in females. These disorders share stress as a potential etiological contributor and hyperarousal as a core symptom, suggesting that the distinction between sexes lies at the intersection of stress and arousal systems. This review focuses on the link between the stress axis and the brain norepinephrine arousal system as a key point at which sex differences occur and are translated to differences in the expression of mood disorders. Evidence for a circuit designed to relay emotion-related information via the limbic corticotropin-releasing factor (CRF) system to the locus coeruleus (LC)-norepinephrine arousal system is reviewed. This is followed by recent novel findings of sex differences in CRF receptor signaling and trafficking that would result in an enhanced arousal response and a compromised ability to adapt to chronic stress in females. Finally, we discuss the evidence for sex differences in LC dendritic structure that allow for an increased receipt and processing of limbic information in females compared to males. Together these complementary sets of data suggest that in females, the LC arousal system is poised to process more limbic information and to respond to some of this information in an enhanced manner compared to males. The clinical and therapeutic considerations arising from this perspective are discussed. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled 'Anxiety and Depression'. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  6. A Concerted Action Of Estradiol And Insulin Like Growth Factor I Underlies Sex Differences In Mood Regulation By Exercise.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Munive, Victor; Santi, Andrea; Torres-Aleman, Ignacio

    2016-05-12

    Mood homeostasis present sexually dimorphic traits which may explain sex differences in the incidence of mood disorders. We explored whether diverse behavioral-setting components of mood may be differentially regulated in males and females by exercise, a known modulator of mood. We found that exercise decreases anxiety only in males. Conversely, exercise enhanced resilience to stress and physical arousal, two other important components of mood, only in females. Because exercise increases brain input of circulating insulin-like growth factor I (IGF-I), a potent modulator of mood, we explored whether sex-specific actions of exercise on mood homeostasis relate to changes in brain IGF-I input. We found that exercise increased hippocampal IGF-I levels only in cycling females. Underlying mechanism involved activation of estrogen (E2) receptors in brain vessels that led to increased uptake of serum IGF-I as E2 was found to stimulate IGF-I uptake in brain endothelial cells. Indeed, modulatory effects of exercise on mood were absent in female mice with low serum IGF-I levels or after either ovariectomy or administration of an E2 receptor antagonist. These results suggest that sex-specific brain IGF-I responses to physiological stimuli such as exercise contribute to dimorphic mood homeostasis that may explain sex differences in affective disorders.

  7. Sex and age related differences in postmyelographic adverse reactions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Maly, P.

    1989-01-01

    Differences in frequency of postmyelographic adverse reactions were analyzed with respect to sex and age in a prospective study including 1026 patients injected with metrizamide and 739 injected with iohexol. Regardless of the type of contrast medium or myelography, all types of adverse reactions were 1.4-3.8 times as frequent in women as in men. Most of the differences were statistically significant. Headache was more frequent, while vomiting and dizziness were less frequent in both women and men aged 26-50 years compared with those over 50 years of age. Dizziness and increased low back pain were consistently reported spontaneously by the patients less frequently than emerged via formal interview. The large differences between the sexes suggest that further research on contrast media toxicity would be best performed with separation of the data by gender. (orig.)

  8. Sex Differences in Affective Facial Reactions Are Present in Childhood

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Luigi Cattaneo

    2018-05-01

    Full Text Available Adults exposed to affective facial displays produce specific rapid facial reactions (RFRs which are of lower intensity in males compared to females. We investigated such sex difference in a population of 60 primary school children (30 F; 30 M, aged 7–10 years. We recorded the surface electromyographic (EMG signal from the corrugator supercilii and the zygomatici muscles, while children watched affective facial displays. Results showed the expected smiling RFR to smiling faces and the expected frowning RFR to sad faces. A systematic difference between male and female participants was observed, with boys showing less ample EMG responses than age-matched girls. We demonstrate that sex differences in the somatic component of affective motor patterns are present also in childhood.

  9. Different Rights, Different Perspectives: Observations on the Same-Sex Marriage Debate.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Howard, J. Paul R.

    2003-01-01

    The Ontario and British Columbia courts of appeal have held that the restriction of marriage to heterosexuals is unconstitutional. Opposing views in same-sex marriage litigation arise from different definitions of "marriage." Proposed federal legislation would legalize same-sex marriage but not resolve the larger, underlying issue of how…

  10. Sex differences in the pathways to major depression: a study of opposite-sex twin pairs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kendler, Kenneth S; Gardner, Charles O

    2014-04-01

    The authors sought to clarify the nature of sex differences in the etiologic pathways to major depression. Retrospective and prospective assessments of 20 developmentally organized risk factors and the occurrence of past-year major depression were conducted at two waves of personal interviews at least 12 months apart in 1,057 opposite-sex dizygotic twin pairs from a population-based register. Analyses were conducted by structural modeling, examining within-pair differences. Sixty percent of all paths in the best-fit model exhibited sex differences. Eleven of the 20 risk factors differed across sexes in their impact on liability to major depression. Five had a greater impact in women: parental warmth, neuroticism, divorce, social support, and marital satisfaction. Six had a greater impact in men: childhood sexual abuse, conduct disorder, drug abuse, prior history of major depression, and distal and dependent proximal stressful life events. The life event categories responsible for the stronger effect in males were financial, occupational, and legal in nature. In a co-twin control design, which matches sisters and brothers on genetic and familial-environmental background, personality and failures in interpersonal relationships played a stronger etiologic role in major depression for women than for men. Externalizing psychopathology, prior depression, and specific "instrumental" classes of acute stressors were more important in the etiologic pathway to major depression for men. The results are consistent with previously proposed typologies of major depression that suggest two subtypes that differ in prevalence in women (deficiencies in caring relationships and interpersonal loss) and men (failures to achieve expected goals, with lowered self-worth).

  11. Patients with Chronic Visceral Pain Show Sex-Related Alterations in Intrinsic Oscillations of the Resting Brain

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hong, Jui-Yang; Kilpatrick, Lisa A.; Labus, Jennifer; Gupta, Arpana; Jiang, Zhiguo; Ashe-McNalley, Cody; Stains, Jean; Heendeniya, Nuwanthi; Ebrat, Bahar; Smith, Suzanne; Tillisch, Kirsten; Naliboff, Bruce

    2013-01-01

    Abnormal responses of the brain to delivered and expected aversive gut stimuli have been implicated in the pathophysiology of irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), a visceral pain syndrome occurring more commonly in women. Task-free resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) can provide information about the dynamics of brain activity that may be involved in altered processing and/or modulation of visceral afferent signals. Fractional amplitude of low-frequency fluctuation is a measure of the power spectrum intensity of spontaneous brain oscillations. This approach was used here to identify differences in the resting-state activity of the human brain in IBS subjects compared with healthy controls (HCs) and to identify the role of sex-related differences. We found that both the female HCs and female IBS subjects had a frequency power distribution skewed toward high frequency to a greater extent in the amygdala and hippocampus compared with male subjects. In addition, female IBS subjects had a frequency power distribution skewed toward high frequency in the insula and toward low frequency in the sensorimotor cortex to a greater extent than male IBS subjects. Correlations were observed between resting-state blood oxygen level-dependent signal dynamics and some clinical symptom measures (e.g., abdominal discomfort). These findings provide the first insight into sex-related differences in IBS subjects compared with HCs using resting-state fMRI. PMID:23864686

  12. The neural correlates of sex differences in emotional reactivity and emotion regulation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Domes, Gregor; Schulze, Lars; Böttger, Moritz; Grossmann, Annette; Hauenstein, Karlheinz; Wirtz, Petra H; Heinrichs, Markus; Herpertz, Sabine C

    2010-05-01

    Sex differences in emotional responding have been repeatedly postulated but less consistently shown in empirical studies. Because emotional reactions are modulated by cognitive appraisal, sex differences in emotional responding might depend on differences in emotion regulation. In this study, we investigated sex differences in emotional reactivity and emotion regulation using a delayed cognitive reappraisal paradigm and measured whole-brain BOLD signal in 17 men and 16 women. During fMRI, participants were instructed to increase, decrease, or maintain their emotional reactions evoked by negative pictures in terms of cognitive reappraisal. We analyzed BOLD responses to aversive compared to neutral pictures in the initial viewing phase and the effect of cognitive reappraisal in the subsequent regulation phase. Women showed enhanced amygdala responding to aversive stimuli in the initial viewing phase, together with increased activity in small clusters within the prefrontal cortex and the temporal cortex. During cognitively decreasing emotional reactions, women recruited parts of the orbitofrontal cortex, the anterior cingulate, and the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex to a lesser extent than men, while there was no sex effect on amygdala activity. In contrast, compared to women, men showed an increased recruitment of regulatory cortical areas during cognitively increasing initial emotional reactions, which was associated with an increase in amygdala activity. Clinical implications of these findings are discussed.

  13. Sex-related differences in attention and memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Solianik, Rima; Brazaitis, Marius; Skurvydas, Albertas

    2016-01-01

    The sex differences and similarities in cognitive abilities is a continuing topic of major interest. Besides, the influences of trends over time and possible effects of sex steroid and assessment time on cognition have expanded the necessity to re-evaluate differences between men and women. Therefore, the aim of this study was to compare cognitive performance between men and women in a strongly controlled experiment. In total, 28 men and 25 women were investigated. Variables of body temperature and heart rate were assessed. A cognitive test battery was used to assess attention (visual search, unpredictable task switching as well as complex visual search and predictable task switching tests) and memory (forced visual memory, forward digit span and free recall test). The differences in heart rate and body temperatures between men and women were not significant. There were no differences in the mean values of attention and memory abilities between men and women. Coefficients of variation of unpredictable task switching response and forward digit span were lower (Pattention task incorrect response and negatively correlated (Pmemory task. Current study showed no sex differences in the mean values of cognition, whereas higher intra-individual variability of short-term memory and attention switching was identified in women, indicating that their performance was lower on these cognitive abilities. Copyright © 2016 The Lithuanian University of Health Sciences. Production and hosting by Elsevier Urban & Partner Sp. z o.o. All rights reserved.

  14. Sex differences in cortisol's regulation of affiliative behavior.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sherman, Gary D; Rice, Leslie K; Jin, Ellie Shuo; Jones, Amanda C; Josephs, Robert A

    2017-06-01

    A contribution to a special issue on Hormones and Human Competition. A stress perspective is used to illuminate how competitive defeat and victory shape biology and behavior. We report a field study examining how change in cortisol following perceived defeat (vs. victory) in a competition-in this case, a dog agility competition-relates to affiliative behavior. Following competition, we measured cortisol change and the extent to which dog handlers directed affiliative behaviors toward their dogs. We found striking sex differences in affiliation. First, men were more affiliative toward their dogs after victory, whereas women were more affiliative after defeat. Second, the greater a female competitor's increase in cortisol, the more time she spent affiliating with her dog, whereas for men, the pattern was the exact opposite: the greater a male competitor's increase in cortisol, the less time he spent affiliating with his dog. This pattern suggests that, in the wake of competition, men and women's affiliative behavior may serve different functions-shared celebration for men; shared consolation for women. These sex differences show not only that men and women react very differently to victory and defeat, but also that equivalent changes in cortisol across the sexes are associated with strikingly different behavioral consequences for men and women. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  15. Sex differences in spatial memory using serial and search tasks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shah, Darshna S; Prados, Jose; Gamble, Jasmin; De Lillo, Carlo; Gibson, Claire L

    2013-11-15

    The present study assessed the spatial abilities of male and female human participants using different versions of the non-navigational Corsi block-tapping test (CBT) and a search task. Males performed significantly better than females on the standard manual version of the CBT; however, the standard CBT does not allow discrimination between spatial memory span and the role of spatial organisational factors (structure, path length and presence of crossings) in the sequences to recall. These organisational factors were assessed, therefore, in an experiment in which 7-block-sequences had to be recalled in a computerised version of the CBT. No sex differences in performance were observed on the computerised CBT, indicating that males do not make better use of spatial organisational principles. Accordingly, sex differences observed in the manual CBT are likely to rely upon differences in memory span between males and females. In the search task, participants could locate a goal by reference to a Euclidian space (the geometry of a virtual enclose) or to proximal non-geometric cues. Both male and female participants showed a preference for the non-geometric cues, which overshadowed learning about the geometric cues when the two sets were available simultaneously during the training stage. These results indicate that sex differences do exist in those tests which are dependent on memory span. Sex differences were absent, however, in spatial organisational skills or in the usage of Euclidian and egocentric strategies to solve problems relying on spatial ability. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  16. Explaining Sex Differences in Reactions to Relationship Infidelities: Comparisons of the Roles of Sex, Gender, Beliefs, Attachment, and Sociosexual Orientation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gary L. Brase

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available To the extent that sex differences are mediated by mechanisms such as sex-roles and beliefs, individual differences in these more proximate traits should account for significant portions of relevant sex differences. Differences between women and men in reactions to sexual and emotional infidelity were assessed in a large sample of participants (n = 477, and these target reactions were evaluated as a function of many potential proximate mediators (infidelity implications beliefs, gender-role beliefs, interpersonal trust, attachment style, sociosexuality, and culture of honor beliefs and as a function of participant sex. Results found a consistent sex difference that was not mediated by any other variables, although a handful of other variables were related to male, but not female, individual differences. These findings suggest particularly promising directions for future research on integrating evolutionarily based sex differences and proximate individual differences.

  17. Explaining sex differences in reactions to relationship infidelities: comparisons of the roles of sex, gender, beliefs, attachment, and sociosexual orientation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brase, Gary L; Adair, Lora; Monk, Kale

    2014-02-04

    To the extent that sex differences are mediated by mechanisms such as sex-roles and beliefs, individual differences in these more proximate traits should account for significant portions of relevant sex differences. Differences between women and men in reactions to sexual and emotional infidelity were assessed in a large sample of participants (n = 477), and these target reactions were evaluated as a function of many potential proximate mediators (infidelity implications beliefs, gender-role beliefs, interpersonal trust, attachment style, sociosexuality, and culture of honor beliefs) and as a function of participant sex. Results found a consistent sex difference that was not mediated by any other variables, although a handful of other variables were related to male, but not female, individual differences. These findings suggest particularly promising directions for future research on integrating evolutionarily based sex differences and proximate individual differences.

  18. Sex and Gender Differences in Prevention of Type 2 Diabetes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jürgen Harreiter

    2018-05-01

    Full Text Available Lifestyle intervention programs are effective in the prevention of type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM in high risk populations. However, most studies only give limited information about the influence of sex and/or gender effectiveness of these interventions. So far, similar outcome was reported for diabetes progression and weight loss. Nevertheless, long-term data on cardiovascular outcome are sparse but favoring women regarding all-cause and cardiovascular mortality. In both men and women, sex hormone imbalances and reproductive disorders are associated with a higher risk of T2DM development. Diabetes prevention approaches are reported for polycystic ovary syndrome, gestational diabetes mellitus, and erectile dysfunction and are presented in this review. In the surgical treatment options for morbid obese patients, sex and gender differences are present. Choices and preferences of adherence to lifestyle and pharmacological interventions, expectations, treatment effects, and complications are influenced by sex or gender. In general, bariatric surgery is performed more often in women seeking medical/surgical help to lose weight. Men are older and have higher comorbidities and mortality rates and worse follow-up outcome after bariatric surgery. A more gender-sensitive clinical approach, as well as consideration of ethnicity may improve quality of life and increase health and life expectancy in men and women with a high risk for subsequent progression to T2DM.

  19. Sex Differences in Patient-Reported Poststroke Disability.

    Science.gov (United States)

    White, Brandi M; Magwood, Gayenell S; Burns, Suzanne Perea; Ellis, Charles

    2018-04-01

    Recent studies have shown that stroke has a differential impact in women compared to men. Women are more likely to survive strokes than men, yet they experience more severe strokes resulting in greater poststroke disability. However, few studies have characterized sex differences in functional ability after stroke. This study examined sex differences in long-term disability among stroke survivors. This was a retrospective analysis of the 2015 National Health Interview Survey. Respondents were asked to rate their ability to perform 11 functional tasks. Univariate comparisons were completed to evaluate sex differences in performance, and multinomial logistic regression was used to determine the odds of reporting functional limitations. Five hundred fourteen men and 641 women stroke survivors completed the survey (mean age: 66.9 years). Approximately 75% of the sample reported having hypertension, 61% high cholesterol, 33% diabetes, 24% heart disease, 21% heart attack, and 16% chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. In the predictive models, men were less likely to report "very difficult/can't do at all" in walking ¼ mile (odds ratios [OR] = 0.68, 95% CI 0.51-0.90), climbing 10 steps (OR = 0.65, 95% CI 0.49-0.85), standing 2 hours (OR = 0.66, 95% CI 0.50-0.87), stooping (OR = 0.51, 95% CI 0.39-0.68), reaching overhead (OR = 0.69, 95% CI 0.49-0.97), carrying 10 pounds (OR = 0.45, 95% CI 0.34-0.59), and pushing large objects (OR = 0.37, 95% CI 0.28-0.5) compared to women. The functional outcomes of men stroke survivors were significantly greater than women. The specific factors that contribute to sex differences in stroke-related outcomes are not entirely clear. Future research is needed to better understand these differences to ensure that equity of care is received.

  20. Recalled and current gender role behavior, gender identity and sexual orientation in adults with Disorders/Differences of Sex Development

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Callens, Nina; van Kuyk, Maaike; van Kuppenveld, Jet H.; Drop, Stenvert L S; Cohen-Kettenis, Peggy T.; Dessens, Arianne B.

    2016-01-01

    The magnitude of sex differences in human brain and behavior and the respective contributions of biology versus socialization remain a topic of ongoing study in science. The preponderance of evidence attests to the notion that sexual differentiation processes are at least partially hormonally

  1. Sex differences in proximal control of the knee joint.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mendiguchia, Jurdan; Ford, Kevin R; Quatman, Carmen E; Alentorn-Geli, Eduard; Hewett, Timothy E

    2011-07-01

    Following the onset of maturation, female athletes have a significantly higher risk for anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) injury compared with male athletes. While multiple sex differences in lower-extremity neuromuscular control and biomechanics have been identified as potential risk factors for ACL injury in females, the majority of these studies have focused specifically on the knee joint. However, increasing evidence in the literature indicates that lumbo-pelvic (core) control may have a large effect on knee-joint control and injury risk. This review examines the published evidence on the contributions of the trunk and hip to knee-joint control. Specifically, the sex differences in potential proximal controllers of the knee as risk factors for ACL injury are identified and discussed. Sex differences in trunk and hip biomechanics have been identified in all planes of motion (sagittal, coronal and transverse). Essentially, female athletes show greater lateral trunk displacement, altered trunk and hip flexion angles, greater ranges of trunk motion, and increased hip adduction and internal rotation during sport manoeuvres, compared with their male counterparts. These differences may increase the risk of ACL injury among female athletes. Prevention programmes targeted towards trunk and hip neuromuscular control may decrease the risk for ACL injuries.

  2. Sex difference in polybrominated diphenyl ether concentrations of walleyes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Madenjian, Charles P.; Trombka, Autumn W.; Rediske, Richard R.; Jude, David J.; O'Keefe, James P.

    2012-01-01

    Polybrominated diphenyl ether (PBDE) concentrations were determined for mature male and mature female walleyes (Sander vitreus) sampled from the Saginaw Bay population during 2007. PBDE concentrations in prey fish caught in the Saginaw River, the primary tributary to Saginaw Bay, and in Saginaw Bay during 2005 and 2007 also were determined. Mature male and mature female walleyes averaged 70.3 ng/g and 24.8 ng/g, respectively, in ΣPBDE, which was equal to the sum of concentrations of six PBDE congeners (BDE-28, BDE-47, BDE-99, BDE-100, BDE-153, and BDE-154). This sex difference was likely due to males spending more time in the Saginaw River system than females. Prey fish captured in the Saginaw River were roughly ten times higher in ΣPBDE than those caught in Saginaw Bay. BDE-47 was the predominant congener in both walleyes and prey fish, and this congener contributed about 50%, on average, to ΣPBDE. Congener profiles differed significantly between the two sexes of walleyes. In contrast, congener profiles of the prey fish did not differ significantly between the river-caught fish and the bay-caught fish. One plausible explanation for these congener profile results was that net trophic transfer efficiencies of PBDEs to walleyes from their prey were similar for all congeners except BDE-28, and that diet composition differed between the two sexes of walleyes.

  3. Sex Differences in Proximal Control of the Knee Joint

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mendiguchia, Jurdan; Ford, Kevin R.; Quatman, Carmen E.; Alentorn-Geli, Eduard; Hewett, Timothy E.

    2014-01-01

    Following the onset of maturation, female athletes have a significantly higher risk for anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) injury compared with male athletes. While multiple sex differences in lower-extremity neuromuscular control and biomechanics have been identified as potential risk factors for ACL injury in females, the majority of these studies have focused specifically on the knee joint. However, increasing evidence in the literature indicates that lumbopelvic (core) control may have a large effect on knee-joint control and injury risk. This review examines the published evidence on the contributions of the trunk and hip to knee-joint control. Specifically, the sex differences in potential proximal controllers of the knee as risk factors for ACL injury are identified and discussed. Sex differences in trunk and hip biomechanics have been identified in all planes of motion (sagittal, coronal and transverse). Essentially, female athletes show greater lateral trunk displacement, altered trunk and hip flexion angles, greater ranges of trunk motion, and increased hip adduction and internal rotation during sport manoeuvres, compared with their male counterparts. These differences may increase the risk of ACL injury among female athletes. Prevention programmes targeted towards trunk and hip neuromuscular control may decrease the risk for ACL injuries. PMID:21688868

  4. Path Complexity in Virtual Water Maze Navigation: Differential Associations with Age, Sex, and Regional Brain Volume.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Daugherty, Ana M; Yuan, Peng; Dahle, Cheryl L; Bender, Andrew R; Yang, Yiqin; Raz, Naftali

    2015-09-01

    Studies of human navigation in virtual maze environments have consistently linked advanced age with greater distance traveled between the start and the goal and longer duration of the search. Observations of search path geometry suggest that routes taken by older adults may be unnecessarily complex and that excessive path complexity may be an indicator of cognitive difficulties experienced by older navigators. In a sample of healthy adults, we quantify search path complexity in a virtual Morris water maze with a novel method based on fractal dimensionality. In a two-level hierarchical linear model, we estimated improvement in navigation performance across trials by a decline in route length, shortening of search time, and reduction in fractal dimensionality of the path. While replicating commonly reported age and sex differences in time and distance indices, a reduction in fractal dimension of the path accounted for improvement across trials, independent of age or sex. The volumes of brain regions associated with the establishment of cognitive maps (parahippocampal gyrus and hippocampus) were related to path dimensionality, but not to the total distance and time. Thus, fractal dimensionality of a navigational path may present a useful complementary method of quantifying performance in navigation. © The Author 2014. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  5. Sex differences in the circadian regulation of sleep and waking cognition in humans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Santhi, Nayantara; Lazar, Alpar S; McCabe, Patrick J; Lo, June C; Groeger, John A; Dijk, Derk-Jan

    2016-05-10

    The sleep-wake cycle and circadian rhythmicity both contribute to brain function, but whether this contribution differs between men and women and how it varies across cognitive domains and subjective dimensions has not been established. We examined the circadian and sleep-wake-dependent regulation of cognition in 16 men and 18 women in a forced desynchrony protocol and quantified the separate contributions of circadian phase, prior sleep, and elapsed time awake on cognition and sleep. The largest circadian effects were observed for reported sleepiness, mood, and reported effort; the effects on working memory and temporal processing were smaller. Although these effects were seen in both men and women, there were quantitative differences. The amplitude of the circadian modulation was larger in women in 11 of 39 performance measures so that their performance was more impaired in the early morning hours. Principal components analysis of the performance measures yielded three factors, accuracy, effort, and speed, which reflect core performance characteristics in a range of cognitive tasks and therefore are likely to be important for everyday performance. The largest circadian modulation was observed for effort, whereas accuracy exhibited the largest sex difference in circadian modulation. The sex differences in the circadian modulation of cognition could not be explained by sex differences in the circadian amplitude of plasma melatonin and electroencephalographic slow-wave activity. These data establish the impact of circadian rhythmicity and sex on waking cognition and have implications for understanding the regulation of brain function, cognition, and affect in shift-work, jetlag, and aging.

  6. Sex differences in the circadian regulation of sleep and waking cognition in humans

    Science.gov (United States)

    Santhi, Nayantara; Lazar, Alpar S.; McCabe, Patrick J.; Lo, June C.; Groeger, John A.; Dijk, Derk-Jan

    2016-01-01

    The sleep–wake cycle and circadian rhythmicity both contribute to brain function, but whether this contribution differs between men and women and how it varies across cognitive domains and subjective dimensions has not been established. We examined the circadian and sleep–wake-dependent regulation of cognition in 16 men and 18 women in a forced desynchrony protocol and quantified the separate contributions of circadian phase, prior sleep, and elapsed time awake on cognition and sleep. The largest circadian effects were observed for reported sleepiness, mood, and reported effort; the effects on working memory and temporal processing were smaller. Although these effects were seen in both men and women, there were quantitative differences. The amplitude of the circadian modulation was larger in women in 11 of 39 performance measures so that their performance was more impaired in the early morning hours. Principal components analysis of the performance measures yielded three factors, accuracy, effort, and speed, which reflect core performance characteristics in a range of cognitive tasks and therefore are likely to be important for everyday performance. The largest circadian modulation was observed for effort, whereas accuracy exhibited the largest sex difference in circadian modulation. The sex differences in the circadian modulation of cognition could not be explained by sex differences in the circadian amplitude of plasma melatonin and electroencephalographic slow-wave activity. These data establish the impact of circadian rhythmicity and sex on waking cognition and have implications for understanding the regulation of brain function, cognition, and affect in shift-work, jetlag, and aging. PMID:27091961

  7. SEX DIFFERENCES AND REPRODUCTIVE HORMONE INFLUENCES ON HUMAN ODOR PERCEPTION

    Science.gov (United States)

    Doty, Richard L.; Cameron, E. Leslie

    2009-01-01

    The question of whether men and women differ in their ability to smell has been the topic of scientific investigation for over a hundred years. Although conflicting findings abound, most studies suggest that, for at least some odorants, women outperform men on tests of odor detection, identification, discrimination, and memory. Most functional imaging and electrophysiological studies similarly imply that, when sex differences are present, they favor women. In this review we examine what is known about sex-related alterations in human smell function, including influences of the menstrual cycle, pregnancy, gonadectomy, and hormone replacement therapy on a range of olfactory measures. We conclude that the relationship between reproductive hormones and human olfactory function is complex and that simple associations between circulating levels of gonadal hormones and measures of olfactory function are rarely present. PMID:19272398

  8. Sex differences in attention to disgust facial expressions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kraines, Morganne A; Kelberer, Lucas J A; Wells, Tony T

    2017-12-01

    Research demonstrates that women experience disgust more readily and with more intensity than men. The experience of disgust is associated with increased attention to disgust-related stimuli, but no prior study has examined sex differences in attention to disgust facial expressions. We hypothesised that women, compared to men, would demonstrate increased attention to disgust facial expressions. Participants (n = 172) completed an eye tracking task to measure visual attention to emotional facial expressions. Results indicated that women spent more time attending to disgust facial expressions compared to men. Unexpectedly, we found that men spent significantly more time attending to neutral faces compared to women. The findings indicate that women's increased experience of emotional disgust also extends to attention to disgust facial stimuli. These findings may help to explain sex differences in the experience of disgust and in diagnoses of anxiety disorders in which disgust plays an important role.

  9. Sex Differences in Binge Eating: Gonadal Hormone Effects Across Development.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Klump, Kelly L; Culbert, Kristen M; Sisk, Cheryl L

    2017-05-08

    Eating disorders are highly sexually differentiated disorders that exhibit a female predominance in risk. Most theories focus on psychosocial explanations to the exclusion of biological/genetic influences. The purpose of this descriptive review is to evaluate evidence from animal and human studies in support of gonadal hormone effects on sex differences in binge eating. Although research is in its nascent stages, findings suggest that increased prenatal testosterone exposure in males appears to protect against binge eating. Although pubertal testosterone may exert additional protective effects, the prenatal period is likely critical for the decreased risk observed in males. By contrast, studies indicate that, in females, it is the lack of prenatal testosterone coupled with the organizational effects of pubertal ovarian hormones that may lead to increased binge eating. Finally, twin data suggest that changes in genetic risk may underlie these hormone influences on sex differences across development.

  10. Sex differences in depression and anxiety disorders: potential biological determinants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Altemus, Margaret

    2006-11-01

    The phenomenon of higher rates of affective disorders in women illustrates many of the difficulties as well as promises of translating preclinical models to human disorders. Abnormalities in the regulation of the hypothalamic-pituitary adrenal axis and the sympathoadrenomedullary system have been identified in depression and anxiety disorders, and these disorders are clearly precipitated and exacerbated by stress. Despite the striking sex difference in the prevalence of depression and anxiety disorders, attempts to identify corresponding sex differences in stress response reactivity in animal models have met with limited success. Processes which may contribute to increased rates of affective disorders in women are greater fluxes in reproductive hormones across the life span, and increased sensitivity to catecholamine augmentation of emotional memory consolidation.

  11. Sex Differences in Feelings of Guilt Arising from Infidelity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maryanne Fisher

    2008-07-01

    Full Text Available Although there is extensive literature regarding sex differences in jealousy due to infidelity, guilt resulting from infidelity remains unexplored. We hypothesize that men will feel guiltier from imagined emotional rather than sexual infidelity, as it is most important for their partner's reproductive success. Similarly, we predict that women will feel more guilt from imagined sexual rather than emotional infidelity. The findings indicate a different pattern; men feel guiltier following sexual infidelity, whereas women feel guiltier following emotional infidelity. Results also show that both sexes believe their partners would have a more difficult time forgiving sexual, rather than emotional, infidelity, but women and not men report that sexual infidelity would more likely lead to relationship dissolution. These findings are discussed in view of evolved mating strategies and individual reproductive success.

  12. Sex-specific differences in injury types among basketball players

    OpenAIRE

    Ito E; Iwamoto J; Azuma K; Matsumoto H

    2014-01-01

    Eri Ito, Jun Iwamoto, Koichiro Azuma, Hideo MatsumotoInstitute for Integrated Sports Medicine, Keio University School of Medicine, Tokyo, JapanAbstract: The purpose of the present study was to investigate sex-specific differences in injury types among basketball players. According to our database, during the 20-year period between October 1991 and June 2011, 1,219 basketball players (640 males and 579 females) consulted our sports medicine clinic; in total, 1,414 injuries in basketball player...

  13. Sex Differences in Proximal Control of the Knee Joint

    OpenAIRE

    Mendiguchia, Jurdan; Ford, Kevin R.; Quatman, Carmen E.; Alentorn-Geli, Eduard; Hewett, Timothy E.

    2011-01-01

    Following the onset of maturation, female athletes have a significantly higher risk for anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) injury compared with male athletes. While multiple sex differences in lower-extremity neuromuscular control and biomechanics have been identified as potential risk factors for ACL injury in females, the majority of these studies have focused specifically on the knee joint. However, increasing evidence in the literature indicates that lumbopelvic (core) control may have a la...

  14. Sex differences in social interaction of methamphetamine-treated rats

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Šlamberová, R.; Mikulecká, Anna; Pometlová, M.; Schutová, B.; Hrubá, L.; Deykun, K.

    2011-01-01

    Roč. 22, č. 7 (2011), s. 617-623 ISSN 0955-8810 R&D Projects: GA MŠk(CZ) 1M0517 Grant - others:GA ČR(CZ) GAP303/10/0580 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z50110509 Keywords : estrogen * methamphetamine * rat * sex difference * social behavior * testosterone Subject RIV: FH - Neurology Impact factor: 2.720, year: 2011

  15. DIFFERENCES OF ANTROPOMETRICAL CHARACTERISTICS IN RELATION TO SEX OF PUPILS

    OpenAIRE

    Goran Gojković; Branislav Radulović

    2010-01-01

    As per sample of 212 examinees at the age of 11 (±6 months) at the fifth grade in Montenegrin elementary schools, it was used the system of 12 variables for the estimation of anthropometrical characteristis. The purpose of the examination was to establish differentiations between different students sex in the initial and final measuring. As for results given by using discriminant analysis and univariant analysis of variance on the anthropometrical student's status, it can be concluded that th...

  16. Clinical epidemiology of Alzheimer’s disease: assessing sex and gender differences

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mielke MM

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Michelle M Mielke,1,2 Prashanthi Vemuri,3 Walter A Rocca1,2 1Department of Health Sciences Research, 2Department of Neurology, 3Department of Radiology, Mayo Clinic, Rochester, MN, USA Abstract: With the aging of the population, the burden of Alzheimer's disease (AD is rapidly expanding. More than 5 million people in the US alone are affected with AD and this number is expected to triple by 2050. While men may have a higher risk of mild cognitive impairment (MCI, an intermediate stage between normal aging and dementia, women are disproportionally affected with AD. One explanation is that men may die of competing causes of death earlier in life, so that only the most resilient men may survive to older ages. However, many other factors should also be considered to explain the sex differences. In this review, we discuss the differences observed in men versus women in the incidence and prevalence of MCI and AD, in the structure and function of the brain, and in the sex-specific and gender-specific risk and protective factors for AD. In medical research, sex refers to biological differences such as chromosomal differences (eg, XX versus XY chromosomes, gonadal differences, or hormonal differences. In contrast, gender refers to psychosocial and cultural differences between men and women (eg, access to education and occupation. Both factors play an important role in the development and progression of diseases, including AD. Understanding both sex- and gender-specific risk and protective factors for AD is critical for developing individualized interventions for the prevention and treatment of AD. Keywords: Alzheimer’s disease, dementia, sex, gender, risk factors, dimorphic medicine

  17. The influence of prenatal sex hormones on development of brain lateralisation and cognitive performance

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Beking, Tess; Geuze, Reint; Kreukels, Baudewijntje P. C.; Groothuis, Ton

    2016-01-01

    Brain lateralisation is the functional specialization of the brain, with some functions performed primarily by the left hemisphere, and others by the right hemisphere. Lateralisation differs in strength and direction between individuals, and among tasks within individuals, potentially affecting

  18. Sex differences in the relationship between white matter connectivity and creativity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ryman, Sephira G; van den Heuvel, Martijn P; Yeo, Ronald A; Caprihan, Arvind; Carrasco, Jessica; Vakhtin, Andrei A; Flores, Ranee A; Wertz, Christopher; Jung, Rex E

    2014-11-01

    Creative cognition emerges from a complex network of interacting brain regions. This study investigated the relationship between the structural organization of the human brain and aspects of creative cognition tapped by divergent thinking tasks. Diffusion weighted imaging (DWI) was used to obtain fiber tracts from 83 segmented cortical regions. This information was represented as a network and metrics of connectivity organization, including connectivity strength, clustering and communication efficiency were computed, and their relationship to individual levels of creativity was examined. Permutation testing identified significant sex differences in the relationship between global connectivity and creativity as measured by divergent thinking tests. Females demonstrated significant inverse relationships between global connectivity and creative cognition, whereas there were no significant relationships observed in males. Node specific analyses revealed inverse relationships across measures of connectivity, efficiency, clustering and creative cognition in widespread regions in females. Our findings suggest that females involve more regions of the brain in processing to produce novel ideas to solutions, perhaps at the expense of efficiency (greater path lengths). Males, in contrast, exhibited few, relatively weak positive relationships across these measures. Extending recent observations of sex differences in connectome structure, our findings of sexually dimorphic relationships suggest a unique topological organization of connectivity underlying the generation of novel ideas in males and females. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  19. Sex differences in components of imagined perspective transformation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gardner, Mark R; Sorhus, Ingrid; Edmonds, Caroline J; Potts, Rosalind

    2012-05-01

    Little research to date has examined whether sex differences in spatial ability extend to the mental self rotation involved in taking on a third party perspective. This question was addressed in the present study by assessing components of imagined perspective transformations in twenty men and twenty women. Participants made speeded left-right judgements about the hand in which an object was held by front- and back- facing schematic human figures in an "own body transformation task." Response times were longer when the figure did not share the same spatial orientation as the participant, and were substantially longer than those made for a control task requiring left-right judgements about the same stimuli from the participant's own point of view. A sex difference in imagined perspective transformation favouring males was found to be restricted to the speed of imagined self rotation, and was not observed for components indexing readiness to take a third party point of view, nor in left-right confusion. These findings indicate that the range of spatial abilities for which a sex difference has been established should be extended to include imagined perspective transformations. They also suggest that imagined perspective transformations may not draw upon those empathic social-emotional perspective taking processes for which females show an advantage. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  20. Detecting depression among adolescents in Santiago, Chile: sex differences.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Araya, Ricardo; Montero-Marin, Jesus; Barroilhet, Sergio; Fritsch, Rosemarie; Gaete, Jorge; Montgomery, Alan

    2013-04-23

    Depression among adolescents is common but most cases go undetected. Brief questionnaires offer an opportunity to identify probable cases but properly validated cut-off points are often unavailable, especially in non-western countries. Sex differences in the prevalence of depression become marked in adolescence and this needs to be accounted when establishing cut-off points. This study involved adolescents attending secondary state schools in Santiago, Chile. We compared the self-reported Beck Depression Inventory-II with a psychiatric interview to ascertain diagnosis. General psychometric features were estimated before establishing the criterion validity of the BDI-II. The BDI-II showed good psychometric properties with good internal consistency, a clear unidimensional factorial structure, and good capacity to discriminate between cases and non-cases of depression. Optimal cut-off points to establish caseness for depression were much higher for girls than boys. Sex discrepancies were primarily explained by differences in scores among those with depression rather than among those without depression. It is essential to validate scales with the populations intended to be used with. Sex differences are often ignored when applying cut-off points, leading to substantial misclassification. Early detection of depression is essential if we think that early intervention is a clinically important goal.

  1. Morbidity figures from general practice: sex differences in traumatology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lagro-Janssen, Toine; Grosicar, Janja

    2010-08-01

    Trauma prevention starts with to find out the extent of the problem and who it affects. Insight into morbidity figures is therefore necessary. To explore sex differences in traumatology and secondary medical care utilization in primary care related to age and socio-economic status (SES). Data were obtained from an academic continuous morbidity registration project in the Netherlands in the period from 1996 to 2006, in which 13,000 patients were followed in 10 successive years. Sex differences showed a male excess from childhood to 45 years and women showing almost double trauma rates in the elderly. Low SES was associated with the greatest incidence of traumas. The largest sex difference in incidence above 65 years appeared in the high SES with more traumas in women compared with men. From this age on, female morbidity in traumatology outnumbered male morbidity regardless of SES. Considering use of referrals, we found that in the age group 15-45 years men made a greater use of secondary medical care. However, the vastest gender influence in medical care utilization was noticed in the age group over 65 years, outnumbered with women. Young men and old women are the most at risk for traumatic health problems: men presenting with traumata of the skull, the tibia and ocular trauma's and women with fractures of the femur, humerus and wrist. For both men and women the greatest incidence is in the low SES. Family physicians can play a pivotal role in prevention to focus on their patients with high risks.

  2. Sex differences in psychological adjustment from infancy to 8 years.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Prior, M; Smart, D; Sanson, A; Oberklaid, F

    1993-03-01

    The objective of this study was to explore sex differences in development from infancy to 8 years of age in a community sample. Measures of biological, social, interactive, and parental functioning as well as teacher reports were obtained. There were minimal differences in infancy, but major psychosocial differences emerged with increasing age. In the biological sphere boys were disadvantaged only in ratings of language and motor skills at 3 to 4 years old. They showed greater temperamental "difficulty" and low persistence factor scores from 5 years onward. Boys were significantly more likely to have problems with adaptive behavior and social competence and to show behavior problems of the hyperactive and aggressive type, as rated by mothers. Parent and family functioning measures did not differentiate between the sexes. Teachers rated boys as having more problems in academic and behavioral domains the first 3 years of school. Path analyses combining data sets gathered when the children were 3 to 8 years old demonstrated the differential courses of development for boys and girls although temperamental flexibility was the best predictor of behavioral adjustment for both sexes. A social learning explanation of the increased incidence of problems among males is supported, although biological influences are not ruled out.

  3. Sex differences in tool use acquisition in bonobos (Pan paniscus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boose, Klaree J; White, Frances J; Meinelt, Audra

    2013-09-01

    All the great ape species are known tool users in both the wild and captivity, although there is great variation in ability and behavioral repertoire. Differences in tool use acquisition between chimpanzees and gorillas have been attributed to differing levels of social tolerance as a result of differences in social structure. Chimpanzees also show sex differences in acquisition and both chimpanzees and bonobos demonstrate a female bias in tool use behaviors. Studies of acquisition are limited in the wild and between species comparisons are complicated in captivity by contexts that often do not reflect natural conditions. Here we investigated tool use acquisition in a captive group of naïve bonobos by simulating naturalistic conditions. We constructed an artificial termite mound fashioned after those that occur in the wild and tested individuals within a social group context. We found sex differences in latencies to attempt and to succeed where females attempted to fish, were successful more quickly, and fished more frequently than males. We compared our results to those reported for chimpanzees and gorillas. Males across all three species did not differ in latency to attempt or to succeed. In contrast, bonobo and chimpanzee females succeeded more quickly than did female gorillas. Female bonobos and female chimpanzees did not differ in either latency to attempt or to succeed. We tested the social tolerance hypothesis by investigating the relationship between tool behaviors and number of neighbors present. We also compared these results to those reported for chimpanzees and gorillas and found that bonobos had the fewest numbers of neighbors present. The results of this study do not support the association between number of neighbors and tool behavior reported for chimpanzees. However, bonobos demonstrated a similar sex difference in tool use acquisition, supporting the hypothesis of a female bias in tool use in Pan. © 2013 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  4. Racial differences in employment outcomes after traumatic brain injury.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arango-Lasprilla, Juan Carlos; Ketchum, Jessica M; Williams, Kelli; Kreutzer, Jeffrey S; Marquez de la Plata, Carlos D; O'Neil-Pirozzi, Therese M; Wehman, Paul

    2008-05-01

    To examine racial differences in employment status and occupational status 1 year after a traumatic brain injury (TBI). Retrospective study. Longitudinal dataset of the Traumatic Brain Injury Model Systems national database. Subjects with primarily moderate to severe TBI (3468 whites vs 1791 minorities) hospitalized between 1989 and 2005. Not applicable. Employment status (competitively employed or unemployed) and occupational status (professional/managerial, skilled, or manual labor) at 1 year postinjury. Race and/or ethnicity has a significant effect on employment status at 1 year postinjury (chi(1)(2)=58.23, Pstatus, sex, Disability Rating Scale at discharge, marital status, cause of injury, age, and education. The adjusted odds of being unemployed versus competitively employed are 2.17 times (95% confidence interval, 1.78-2.65) greater for minorities than for whites. Race and ethnicity does not have a significant effect on occupational status at 1 year postinjury. With this empirical evidence supporting racial differences in employment outcomes between minorities and whites at 1 year postinjury, priority should be given to tailoring interventions to maximize minority survivors' work-related productivity.

  5. Sex differences in autonomic function following maximal exercise.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kappus, Rebecca M; Ranadive, Sushant M; Yan, Huimin; Lane-Cordova, Abbi D; Cook, Marc D; Sun, Peng; Harvey, I Shevon; Wilund, Kenneth R; Woods, Jeffrey A; Fernhall, Bo

    2015-01-01

    Heart rate variability (HRV), blood pressure variability, (BPV) and heart rate recovery (HRR) are measures that provide insight regarding autonomic function. Maximal exercise can affect autonomic function, and it is unknown if there are sex differences in autonomic recovery following exercise. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to determine sex differences in several measures of autonomic function and the response following maximal exercise. Seventy-one (31 males and 40 females) healthy, nonsmoking, sedentary normotensive subjects between the ages of 18 and 35 underwent measurements of HRV and BPV at rest and following a maximal exercise bout. HRR was measured at minute one and two following maximal exercise. Males have significantly greater HRR following maximal exercise at both minute one and two; however, the significance between sexes was eliminated when controlling for VO2 peak. Males had significantly higher resting BPV-low-frequency (LF) values compared to females and did not significantly change following exercise, whereas females had significantly increased BPV-LF values following acute maximal exercise. Although males and females exhibited a significant decrease in both HRV-LF and HRV-high frequency (HF) with exercise, females had significantly higher HRV-HF values following exercise. Males had a significantly higher HRV-LF/HF ratio at rest; however, both males and females significantly increased their HRV-LF/HF ratio following exercise. Pre-menopausal females exhibit a cardioprotective autonomic profile compared to age-matched males due to lower resting sympathetic activity and faster vagal reactivation following maximal exercise. Acute maximal exercise is a sufficient autonomic stressor to demonstrate sex differences in the critical post-exercise recovery period.

  6. Sex Differences in Antiretroviral Therapy Initiation in Pediatric HIV Infection.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Masahiko Mori

    Full Text Available The incidence and severity of infections in childhood is typically greater in males. The basis for these observed sex differences is not well understood, and potentially may facilitate novel approaches to reducing disease from a range of conditions. We here investigated sex differences in HIV-infected children in relation to antiretroviral therapy (ART initiation and post-treatment outcome. In a South African cohort of 2,101 HIV-infected children, we observed that absolute CD4+ count and CD4% were significantly higher in ART-naïve female, compared to age-matched male, HIV-infected children. Absolute CD4 count and CD4% were also significantly higher in HIV-uninfected female versus male neonates. We next showed that significantly more male than female children were initiated on ART (47% female; and children not meeting criteria to start ART by >5 yrs were more frequently female (59%; p<0.001. Among ART-treated children, immune reconstitution of CD4 T-cells was more rapid and more complete in female children, even after adjustment for pre-ART absolute CD4 count or CD4% (p=0.011, p=0.030, respectively. However, while ART was initiated as a result of meeting CD4 criteria less often in females (45%, ART initiation as a result of clinical disease in children whose CD4 counts were above treatment thresholds occurred more often in females (57%, p<0.001. The main sex difference in morbidity observed in children initiating ART above CD4 thresholds, above that of TB disease, was as a result of wasting and stunting observed in females with above-threshold CD4 counts (p=0.002. These findings suggest the possibility that optimal treatment of HIV-infected children might incorporate differential CD4 treatment thresholds for ART initiation according to sex.

  7. Mechanical contributors to sex differences in idiopathic knee osteoarthritis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nicolella Daniel P

    2012-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract The occurrence of knee osteoarthritis (OA increases with age and is more common in women compared with men, especially after the age of 50 years. Recent work suggests that contact stress in the knee cartilage is a significant predictor of the risk for developing knee OA. Significant gaps in knowledge remain, however, as to how changes in musculoskeletal traits disturb the normal mechanical environment of the knee and contribute to sex differences in the initiation and progression of idiopathic knee OA. To illustrate this knowledge deficit, we summarize what is known about the influence of limb alignment, muscle function, and obesity on sex differences in knee OA. Observational data suggest that limb alignment can predict the development of radiographic signs of knee OA, potentially due to increased stresses and strains within the joint. However, these data do not indicate how limb alignment could contribute to sex differences in either the development or worsening of knee OA. Similarly, the strength of the knee extensor muscles is compromised in women who develop radiographic and symptomatic signs of knee OA, but the extent to which the decline in muscle function precedes the development of the disease is uncertain. Even less is known about how changes in muscle function might contribute to the worsening of knee OA. Conversely, obesity is a stronger predictor of developing knee OA symptoms in women than in men. The influence of obesity on developing knee OA symptoms is not associated with deviation in limb alignment, but BMI predicts the worsening of the symptoms only in individuals with neutral and valgus (knock-kneed knees. It is more likely, however, that obesity modulates OA through a combination of systemic effects, particularly an increase in inflammatory cytokines, and mechanical factors within the joint. The absence of strong associations of these surrogate measures of the mechanical environment in the knee joint with sex

  8. A Preliminary Study of Sex Differences in Emotional Experience.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reyes-Aguilar, Azalea; Barrios, Fernando A

    2016-04-01

    Evolutionary approaches have proposed that women possess an advantage over men in emotional functioning to promote attachment for child-rearing. Likewise, sex differences have been reported in traits such as personality and empathy, traits that likely modulate emotional processing. In this preliminary study, sex differences in emotional processing were analyzed, including empathy as a social emotion and personality traits, as well as whether there exist relationships between those measures. Young volunteers (N = 105) indicated the emotional valence, activation, and dominance that they experience in situations categorized as emotionally positive, negative, or neutral. The results of comparison between sexes supported the approach that women showed more sensitivity to high activation and dominance for positive emotions and empathy, and men were more sensitive to negative situations. Correlation analysis showed only one positive relationship between scores of Self-transcendence, a subscale of Temperament and Character Inventory, with activation scores of neutral situations, but not with emotionally charged situations, perhaps because emotions are context-dependent processes while personality traits are considered context-independent descriptions of habits. These findings should be replicated to enrich knowledge about problems in emotional processing. © The Author(s) 2016.

  9. Autonomy-connectedness mediates sex differences in symptoms of psychopathology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bekker, Marrie H. J.; van Assen, Marcel A. L. M.

    2017-01-01

    Objectives This study aimed to examine if autonomy-connectedness, capacity for self-governance under the condition of connectedness, would mediate sex differences in symptoms of various mental disorders (depression, anxiety, eating disorders, antisocial personality disorder). Method Participants (N = 5,525) from a representative community sample in the Netherlands filled out questionnaires regarding the variables under study. Results Autonomy-connectedness (self-awareness, SA; sensitivity to others, SO; capacity for managing new situations, CMNS) fully mediated the sex differences in depression and anxiety, and partly in eating disorder -(drive for thinness, bulimia, and body dissatisfaction) and anti-social personality disorder characteristics. The mediations followed the expected sex-specific patterns. SO related positively to the internalizing disorder indices, and negatively to the anti-social personality disorder. SA related negatively to all disorder indices; and CMNS to all internalizing disorder indices, but positively to the anti-social personality disorder. Conclusion Treatment of depression, anxiety, but also eating disorders and the antisocial personality disorder may benefit from a stronger focus on autonomy strengthening. PMID:28771498

  10. Sex differences in perceived attributes of computer-mediated communication.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harper, Vernon B

    2003-02-01

    Researchers have pointed to the influence of sex with respect to the attributes of the computer medium. The author elaborates upon possible sex differences in reference to perceived attributes of the computer medium, i.e., Richness, Accessibility, Velocity, Interactivity, Plasticity, and Immediacy. Data from both a pilot and main study are reported and interpreted. The pilot study included 78 participants, while the main study involved 211. The independent samples were composed of Communication Studies students enrolled at two Mid-Atlantic universities. Nine items with anchors of 1: strongly disagree and 7: strongly agree were taken from the 2000 Computer Mediated Communication Competence Scale of Spitzberg to assess the attributes of computer-mediated interaction. The results indicate that women scored higher than men on perceptions of Accessibility, Velocity, Interactivity, and Immediacy.

  11. Sex Differences and Laterality in Astrocyte Number and Complexity in the Adult Rat Medial Amygdala

    Science.gov (United States)

    JOHNSON, RYAN T.; BREEDLOVE, S. MARC; JORDAN, CYNTHIA L.

    2008-01-01

    The posterodorsal portion of the medial amygdala (MePD) is sexually dimorphic in several rodent species. In several other brain nuclei, astrocytes change morphology in response to steroid hormones. We visualized MePD astrocytes using glial-fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP) immunocytochemistry. We compared the number and process complexity of MePD astrocytes in adult wildtype male and female rats and testicular feminized mutant (TFM) male rats that lack functional androgen receptors (ARs) to determine whether MePD astrocytes are sexually differentiated and whether ARs have a role. Unbiased stereological methods revealed laterality and sex differences in MePD astrocyte number and complexity. The right MePD contained more astrocytes than the left in all three genotypes, and the number of astrocytes was also sexually differentiated in the right MePD, with males having more astrocytes than females. In contrast, the left MePD contained more complex astrocytes than did the right MePD in all three genotypes, and males had more complex astrocytes than females in this hemisphere. TFM males were comparable to wildtype females, having fewer astrocytes on the right and simpler astrocytes on the left than do wildtype males. Taken together, these results demonstrate that astrocytes are sexually dimorphic in the adult MePD and that the nature of the sex difference is hemisphere-dependent: a sex difference in astrocyte number in the right MePD and a sex difference in astrocyte complexity in the left MePD. Moreover, functional ARs appear to be critical in establishing these sex differences in MePD astrocyte morphology. PMID:18853427

  12. Adversity and sex differences in social and emotional sensitivity in children; a possible mechanism for sex differences in psychiatric disorders

    OpenAIRE

    Jonathan Hill; Helen Sharp; Lynne Murray

    2010-01-01

    Females are superior to males on a range of tasks indexing social sensitivity, the capacity to infer others' mental states and respond with appropriate behaviours and emotions(1-3). There are also sex differences in psychiatric disorders in children and adolescents. Boys have higher rates of psychiatric disorders before puberty, but disorders increase markedly in girls after puberty (4). The causes of the commonest forms of disorder, antisocial behaviour problems in boys, and depression ...

  13. The role of circulating sex hormones in menstrual cycle dependent modulation of pain-related brain activation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Veldhuijzen, Dieuwke S.; Keaser, Michael L.; Traub, Deborah S.; Zhuo, Jiachen; Gullapalli, Rao P.; Greenspan, Joel D.

    2013-01-01

    Sex differences in pain sensitivity have been consistently found but the basis for these differences is incompletely understood. The present study assessed how pain-related neural processing varies across the menstrual cycle in normally cycling, healthy females, and whether menstrual cycle effects are based on fluctuating sex hormone levels. Fifteen subjects participated in four test sessions during their menstrual, mid-follicular, ovulatory, and midluteal phases. Brain activity was measured while nonpainful and painful stimuli were applied with a pressure algometer. Serum hormone levels confirmed that scans were performed at appropriate cycle phases in 14 subjects. No significant cycle phase differences were found for pain intensity or unpleasantness ratings of stimuli applied during fMRI scans. However, lower pressure pain thresholds were found for follicular compared to other phases. Pain-specific brain activation was found in several regions traditionally associated with pain processing, including the medial thalamus, anterior and mid-insula, mid-cingulate, primary and secondary somatosensory cortices, cerebellum, and frontal regions. The inferior parietal lobule, occipital gyrus, cerebellum and several frontal regions demonstrated interaction effects between stimulus level and cycle phase, indicating differential processing of pain-related responses across menstrual cycle phases. Correlational analyses indicated that cycle-related changes in pain sensitivity measures and brain activation were only partly explained by varying sex hormone levels. These results show that pain-related cerebral activation varies significantly across the menstrual cycle, even when perceived pain intensity and unpleasantness remain constant. The involved brain regions suggest that cognitive pain or more general bodily awareness systems are most susceptible to menstrual cycle effects. PMID:23528204

  14. Sex differences in memory estimates for pictures and words.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ionescu, M D

    2000-08-01

    Memory performance estimates of men and women before and after a recall test were investigated. College students (17 men and 20 women), all juniors, participated in a memory task involving the recall of 80 stimuli (40 pictures and 40 words). Before and after the task they were asked to provide estimates of their pre- and postrecall performance. Although no sex differences were found for total correct recall, recall for pictures, and recall for words, or in the estimates of memory performance before the recall task, there were significant differences after the test: women underestimated their performance on the words and men underestimated their performance on the picture items.

  15. Sex differences in emotional contexts modulation on response inhibition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ramos-Loyo, Julieta; Angulo-Chavira, Armando; Llamas-Alonso, Luis A; González-Garrido, Andrés A

    2016-10-01

    The aim of the present study was to explore sex differences in the effects that emotional contexts exert on the temporal course of response inhibition using event-related potentials (ERP). Participants performed a Go-NoGo response inhibition task under 3 context conditions: with 1) neutral background stimuli, and 2) pleasant, and 3) unpleasant emotional contexts. No sex differences were found in relation to accuracy. Women showed higher N2NoGo amplitudes than men in both emotional contexts; whereas during inhibition men tended to show higher P3NoGo amplitudes than women in the unpleasant context. Both groups experienced a relevant effect of the presence of the unpleasant context during inhibition processing, as shown by the enhancement of the N2NoGo amplitudes in frontal regions compared to results from the neutral and pleasant conditions. In addition, women showed differences between the pleasant and unpleasant contexts, with the latter inducing higher amplitude values. Only in men did inhibition accuracy correlate with higher N2NoGo and lower P3NoGo amplitudes in the emotional context conditions. These findings suggest that when an inhibition task is performed in an emotionally-neutral background context no sex differences are observed in either accuracy or ERP components. However, when the emotional context was introduced -especially the unpleasant one- some gender differences did become evident. The higher N2NoGo amplitude at the presence of the unpleasant context may reflect an effect on attention and conflict monitoring. In addition, results suggest that during earlier processing stages, women invested more resources to process inhibition than men. Furthermore, men who invested more neural resources during earlier stages showed better response inhibition than those who did it during later processing stages, more closely-related to cognitive and motor inhibition processes. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  16. Sex-Specific Patterns of Aberrant Brain Function in First-Episode Treatment-Naive Patients with Schizophrenia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lei, Wei; Li, Mingli; Deng, Wei; Zhou, Yi; Ma, Xiaohong; Wang, Qiang; Guo, Wanjun; Li, Yinfei; Jiang, Lijun; Han, Yuanyuan; Huang, Chaohua; Hu, Xun; Li, Tao

    2015-07-16

    Male and female patients with schizophrenia show significant differences in a number of important clinical features, yet the neural substrates of these differences are still poorly understood. Here we explored the sex differences in the brain functional aberrations in 124 treatment-naïve patients with first-episode schizophrenia (61 males), compared with 102 age-matched healthy controls (50 males). Maps of degree centrality (DC) and amplitude of low-frequency fluctuations (ALFF) were constructed using resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging data and compared between groups. We found that: (1) Selective DC reduction was observed in the right putamen (Put_R) in male patients and the left middle frontal gyrus (MFG) in female patients; (2) Functional connectivity analysis (using Put_R and MFG as seeds) found that male and female patients have disturbed functional integration in two separate networks, i.e., the sensorimotor network and the default mode network; (3) Significant ALFF alterations were also observed in these two networks in both genders; (4) Sex specific brain functional alterations were associated with various symptoms in patients. These results suggested that sex-specific patterns of functional aberration existed in schizophrenia, and these patterns were associated with the clinical features both in male and female patients.

  17. Sex-Specific Patterns of Aberrant Brain Function in First-Episode Treatment-Naive Patients with Schizophrenia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wei Lei

    2015-07-01

    Full Text Available Male and female patients with schizophrenia show significant differences in a number of important clinical features, yet the neural substrates of these differences are still poorly understood. Here we explored the sex differences in the brain functional aberrations in 124 treatment-naïve patients with first-episode schizophrenia (61 males, compared with 102 age-matched healthy controls (50 males. Maps of degree centrality (DC and amplitude of low-frequency fluctuations (ALFF were constructed using resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging data and compared between groups. We found that: (1 Selective DC reduction was observed in the right putamen (Put_R in male patients and the left middle frontal gyrus (MFG in female patients; (2 Functional connectivity analysis (using Put_R and MFG as seeds found that male and female patients have disturbed functional integration in two separate networks, i.e., the sensorimotor network and the default mode network; (3 Significant ALFF alterations were also observed in these two networks in both genders; (4 Sex specific brain functional alterations were associated with various symptoms in patients. These results suggested that sex-specific patterns of functional aberration existed in schizophrenia, and these patterns were associated with the clinical features both in male and female patients.

  18. Sex Education Knowledge Differences between Freshmen and Senior College Undergraduates

    Science.gov (United States)

    Franklin, Ruth M.; Dotger, Sharon

    2011-01-01

    Abstinence sexuality education (sex ed) is the only federally funded sex ed in the United States. The strict curriculum of this education does not educate American adolescents about safer sex practices and leaves a knowledge gap in these adolescents that follows them into college. The Problem: This project aimed to identify sex knowledge…

  19. Morphological brain differences between adult stutterers and non-stutterers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hänggi Jürgen

    2004-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The neurophysiological and neuroanatomical foundations of persistent developmental stuttering (PDS are still a matter of dispute. A main argument is that stutterers show atypical anatomical asymmetries of speech-relevant brain areas, which possibly affect speech fluency. The major aim of this study was to determine whether adults with PDS have anomalous anatomy in cortical speech-language areas. Methods Adults with PDS (n = 10 and controls (n = 10 matched for age, sex, hand preference, and education were studied using high-resolution MRI scans. Using a new variant of the voxel-based morphometry technique (augmented VBM the brains of stutterers and non-stutterers were compared with respect to white matter (WM and grey matter (GM differences. Results We found increased WM volumes in a right-hemispheric network comprising the superior temporal gyrus (including the planum temporale, the inferior frontal gyrus (including the pars triangularis, the precentral gyrus in the vicinity of the face and mouth representation, and the anterior middle frontal gyrus. In addition, we detected a leftward WM asymmetry in the auditory cortex in non-stutterers, while stutterers showed symmetric WM volumes. Conclusions These results provide strong evidence that adults with PDS have anomalous anatomy not only in perisylvian speech and language areas but al