1932

Abstract

Convincing evidence indicates that prenatal exposure to the gonadal hormone, testosterone, influences the development of children's sex-typical toy and activity interests. In addition, growing evidence shows that testosterone exposure contributes similarly to the development of other human behaviors that show sex differences, including sexual orientation, core gender identity, and some, though not all, sex-related cognitive and personality characteristics. In addition to these prenatal hormonal influences, early infancy and puberty may provide additional critical periods when hormones influence human neurobehavioral organization. Sex-linked genes could also contribute to human gender development, and most sex-related characteristics are influenced by socialization and other aspects of postnatal experience, as well. Neural mechanisms underlying the influences of gonadal hormones on human behavior are beginning to be identified. Although the neural mechanisms underlying experiential influences remain largely uninvestigated, they could involve the same neural circuitry as that affected by hormones.

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/content/journals/10.1146/annurev-neuro-061010-113654
2011-07-21
2024-04-24
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  • Article Type: Review Article
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