Reply to Del Giudice et al., Chekroud et al., and Rosenblatt: Do brains of females and males belong to two distinct populations?

@article{Joel2016ReplyTD,
  title={Reply to Del Giudice et al., Chekroud et al., and Rosenblatt: Do brains of females and males belong to two distinct populations?},
  author={Daphna Joel and Ariel Persico and J{\"u}rgen H{\"a}nggi and Jared Pool and Zohar Berman},
  journal={Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences},
  year={2016},
  volume={113},
  pages={E1969 - E1970}
}
We are glad that our paper (1) raised discussions on the relations between sex and the brain and on our new methodological approach. Clearly, sex affects the brain, as evidenced in differences between brains from females and brains from males in both macroscopic and microscopic features. However, the fact that sex affects the brain does not necessarily entail that there are two distinct types of brains, “male brains” and “female brains,” as there are two distinct types of genitalia (2⇓–4… 

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References

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Male or Female? Brains are Intersex

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It is argued that human brains are composed of an ever-changing heterogeneous mosaic of “male’ and “female” brain characteristics that cannot be aligned on a continuum between a “ male brain” and a ”female brain.

Joel et al.'s method systematically fails to detect large, consistent sex differences

It is argued that claim i is based on faulty methodology, and claim ii is misleading if extended to overall sex differences in brain structure.

Sex beyond the genitalia: The human brain mosaic

This study demonstrates that, although there are sex/gender differences in the brain, human brains do not belong to one of two distinct categories: male brain/female brain and most brains are comprised of unique “mosaics” of features.

Patterns in the human brain mosaic discriminate males from females

The authors convincingly establish that there is little evidence for this strict sexually dimorphic view of human brains, counter to the popular lay conception of a “male” and “female” brain.

Beyond sex differences: new approaches for thinking about variation in brain structure and function

An approach to thinking about variation in brain structure and function that pulls us outside the sex differences formulation is offered, arguing that the existence of differences between the brains of males and females does not unravel the relations between sex and the brain nor is it sufficient to characterize a population of brains.

Genetic-gonadal-genitals sex (3G-sex) and the misconception of brain and gender, or, why 3G-males and 3G-females have intersex brain and intersex gender

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The categorization of individuals as “male” or “female” is based on chromosome complement and gonadal and genital phenotype, but although only ~1% percent of humans are 3G-“intersex”, when it comes to brain and gender, the authors all have an intersex brain (a mosaic of “ male” and “ female” brain characteristics).

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It is revealed that brain size is more important than Sex in explaining interindividual differences in compartmental volumes and when statistically controlling for brain size Sex differences and Sex × Age interactions practically disappear.

Multivariate revisit to “sex beyond the genitalia”

It is found that no single variable can separate human males from females, in contrast to genitalia-related data, which easily separate genders.

How sexually dimorphic are we? Review and synthesis

It is concluded that this frequency of deviation from the ideal male or female may be as high as 2% of live births and the frequency of individuals receiving “corrective” genital surgery probably runs between 1 and 2 per 1,000 live births.

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The hypothesis of neuronal interconnectivity as a function of brain size might account for shorter and more symmetrical interhemispheric transfer times in women and for empirical evidence that visual and auditory processing are stronger lateralized in men is investigated.