<%rssLink ()%> <%googleAnalytics ()%>

Do the Brains of Women with Autism Sport Male Features?

Other directories: help, engl1190, umw, lane, commons, open, adp, n490, hyp, mac, psu, cfcs

Jennifer Benoit

The brains of some women with autism more closely resemble those of typical men than those of typical women.

Origin and Prevalence

Using brain imaging, the researchers mapped the brains of typical men and women along a spectrum. Nearly 80 percent of the brains of women with autism fall at the male end of this spectrum. It is unclear whether the atypical cortical thickness seen in women with autism contributes to or arises from their autism. It is also not known whether cortical thickness tracks with sex-related cognitive or behavioral features.

Pelphrey, one of the researchers, is discovering that girls with autism are indeed different from other girls in how their brain analyzes social information. But they are not like boys with autism. Each girl's brain instead looks like that of a typical boy of the same age, with reduced activity in regions normally associated with socializing. The brain-activity measures they show would not be considered "autistic" in a boy. In short, the brain of a girl with autism may be more like the brain of a typical boy than that of a boy with autism.

Behavioral and preliminary neuroimaging findings suggest autism manifests differently in girls. Notably, females with autism may be closer to typically developing males in their social abilities than typical girls or boys with autism.

Issues and Analysis

After researching whether the brains of women with Autism sport male features, all of the sources I found credible seem to be true. Not to say that a woman with Autism looks like a man, but more so that their brain functions seem to be very similar. Also, the structure of the brain is similar to that of a non-autistic male. Behavioral evidence has also been collected to prove this study to be true. We should not assume that everything found for males or from male-predominant mixed samples will apply to females.

Credible Sources:

Steps I took in my Research:

  1. I googled my topic "Do the Brains of Women with Autism Sport Male Features?"
  2. I took a look at what links popped up, trying to find articles by Doctors or other credible sources.
  3. I clicked into a few different articles to see if they all concluded the same thing.
  4. I then copied the links to the Digi.po Google Doc.
  5. I copy and pasted some of the information to my document.

All Content released CC0 (Public Domain) by the Digital Polarization Initiative.

The Digital Polarization Initiative is a cross-institutional project that encourages students to investigate and verify the information they find online. Articles are student-produced, and should be checked for accuracy before citation as sources.

DigiPo members can edit this page

Photo Credit: Header photos generate in randomly. Check this page for a list of photography credits and licensing.

The Digital Polarization Initiative is a student-run project which allows university students to investigate questions of truth and authority on the web and publish their results. Learn more, or see our index. Photo credits here. DigiPo members can edit this page.