Baron Cohen is right, again

Professor Simon Baron-Cohen, Director of the Autism Research Centre at Cambridge, who led the study: “We are interested in understanding autism, not preventing it.

“This new finding supports the idea that increased prenatal sex steroid hormones are one of the potential causes for the condition.

“Genetics is well established as another, and these hormones likely interact with genetic factors to affect the developing foetal brain.”

Surge of hormones in the womb he’s been musing on this as the (or a, perhaps the trigger) cause for at last a decade and a half now.

8 thoughts on “Baron Cohen is right, again”

  1. The Meissen Bison

    What is the degree of coincidence between gayness and autism? Do Cypriot bishops opine on this?

  2. A professor at USCD spoke to me on this very issue in 1975: the possibility of prenatal influence leading to autism (his bête noire). Of course, that implies that stress or some other externality affected the mother. But, of course, mothers never want to be blamed for the condition.

  3. But why the hormone surge? It seems too widespread to be genetics alone. My guess is that the hormones surge in response to an infection or other environmental factor; which normally wouldn’t be a problem, but is bad if it happens in a particular window of time during pregnancy, and if you (or the baby) have the susceptible genes.

  4. Meissen,

    There is a link between autism in girls and FtM transgender people. It’s prevalent enough that if your daughter proclaims to be a boy, get her tested for autism first. For boys, the gay stereotype is diametrically opposed to the autistic stereotype, so I don’t imagine there’s much correlation there.

  5. Any age related issues? women are generally giving birth later in life, maybe hormone balances shift or more prone to them as you age?

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