Autism and a New Study
Happy New Year 2022
Recently, I came across a study that provides one explanation on why autism presents in males more than females.
NOTE: This is only one small study conducted by Dr. Christine Ecker of Goethe University in Germany.
What did the study say?
The study looked at why it seems as if autism presents more in boys/males than girls/females.
The last I looked the ratio was one in four, females to males.
Long ago, I was informed that females were not as likely to get diagnosed.
Additionally, I learned that autism in females had a tendency to be more severe.
Above all, it was long known that girls were either under-represented or had more severe autism.
Is there new information?
According to what I read, another reason for the discrepancy might be more biological.
Not the one-time news that older men were somehow responsible.
This study had some results that pointed the reason to the actual differences in a male brain verses a female brain.
Apparently, there are structural differences between the female brains and male brains.
For instance, male brains can have thinner cerebral cortexes. (The cerebral cortex work functions like language, emotion, and thought.
What exactly did the study do?
Dr. Ecker examined the brains of 98 adults on the spectrum and 98 neurotypical adults. Half the subjects in each group were male, and the other half of the subjects in each group were female.
What were the results?
Dr. Ecker and her team measured the thicknesses of the participant’s cerebral cortexes.
They found that the thickness of the cerebral cortexes in the male autistic brains resembled the thickness of the cerebral cortexes of the neurotypical, male brains.
Furthermore, the autistic female brains were found to have thicknesses closer to the male brains, neurotypical or autistic.
In conclusion, females whose brains were more male in the thickness of the cerebral cortex where more likely to have autism.
What does this mean?
Is the male brain thickness a cause of autism?
Is it simply a symptom?
Do the thicknesses change as the brain develops?
Does it affect anything really?
The sample size of this study was relatively small. That means that none of these conclusions are necessarily conclusive.
There could be very little meaning or it could mean a significant find.
The bottom line…
Females continue to fall through the cracks.
Does the evidence from this study help to get more females diagnosed?
They’re not sure.
From what I read, they were continue to research this evidence.
Similarly, other studies may shed more light on this topic.
In the meantime, hopefully females with autism will stop falling through the cracks.
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