Testosterone and autism

The opposition testostérone / sérotonin always remains in my mind as I surf on the web, tracking information related to giftedness… I happened to read a post from a french blog dedicated to Scientic Information on Autism

The post translated an article published in Science Daily (Feb. 16, 2011). Here’s the first paragraph of the article : ” George Washington University researcher, Dr. Valerie Hu, Professor of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, and her team at the School of Medicine and Health Sciences, have found that male and female sex hormones regulate expression of an important gene in neuronal cell culture through a mechanism that could explain not only higher levels of testosterone observed in some individuals with autism, but also why males have a higher incidence of autism than females“.

The article tells about a study published in PloSONE and namedSex Hormones in Autism: Androgens and Estrogens Differentially and Reciprocally Regulate RORA, a Novel Candidate Gene for Autism

I am not aware at all of what all this deals with. However, I could not but read these following words : Je suis loin de comprendre les résultats de cette recherche. En revanche, je note ces quelques mots : “higher levels of testosterone observed in some individuals with autism, but also why males have a higher incidence of autism than females“.

I therefore add this article to my reflections regarding the role of testosterone in giftedness.

Some gifted are labelled as autists as they have poor social abilities (see my former post), but also this deep need of withdrawal as they want to rest.

Some gifted are autists at some degrees – “aspies” are forming a part (cf my post Giftedness and Autism, which mentions a “grey zone”, common points between giftedness and autism).

Reading this article of Science Daily I cannot but think of the Geswhind – Behan & Galaburda theory published in 1982, which showed the importance of testosterone in brain lateralisation. A recent study presented in a former post  (Giftednes and hormones) mentionned that point  as it pointed out the importance of testosterone in gifted brain.

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