HORMONAL INFLUENCES ON HUMAN SEXUALLY-DIMORPHIC BEHAVIOR

Project: Research project

Project Details

Description

This collaborative project is an investigation of gonadal hormone
influences on human sexually-dimorphic cognitive and social behavior. The
aims are four-fold: (a) to delineate the neural substrate of hormonal
influences on cognitive abilities, especially spatial ability; (b) to
determine the specific hormone (androgen or estrogen) responsible for
masculine-typical development of particular behaviors; (c) to examine
behaviors which are similar to those studied in laboratory animals and
found to be sensitive to the early gonadal hormone environment, or which
have been suggested to be hormonally influenced but have not been
adequately studied in human beings; (d) to study possible
hormonally-influenced early antecedents of later cognitive and social
behavior. Patients (N = 350) will be recruited from several medical
centers and include three groups with different abnormalities of hormone
production, sensitivity, or exposure (congenital adrenal hyperplasia,
androgen insensitivity, and prenatal exposure to diethylstilbestrol). Sex-
and age-matched siblings and cousins will be recruited as controls
(N = 350). Subjects in two age ranges (2-6 and 12 and older) will be
tested on (a) a variety of tasks related to specific cortical areas or
different patterns of neurological organization, and/or (b) on behaviors
shown to be sexually-dimorphic in humans, or hormonally-influenced in other
mammals and poorly studied with regard to hormonal influences in human
beings. Behaviors to be examined include play behavior (rough-and-tumble
play and toy preferences), cognitive abilities (verbal, spatial,
mathematical, and reasoning abilities), cerebral hemispheric specialization
(for verbal and music processing), early childhood activities, and
personality. Results from this study will provide information about
hormonal influences on the development of specific behaviors that are both
socially and educationally relevant. They will also provide information on
the relevance of animal models for understanding human hormone-behavior
relationships.
StatusFinished
Effective start/end date12/31/896/30/00

Funding

  • National Institutes of Health: $126,539.00
  • Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development
  • National Institutes of Health
  • Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development
  • Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development
  • Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development
  • Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development
  • Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development
  • Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development
  • Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development

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