March 23, 2004

Factors in Schizophrenia

Interestingly - it seems that Fetal sex hormone exposure may predispose humans to schizophrenia.

This research (and previous research) suggests that "The differentiation of the human brain is triggered by sexual steroid hormones in the fetus. The development of both the urogenital system and the appendicular skeleton are under common control by the HOX genes. "

Apparently these genes that are triggered by sexual steroid hormones also control finger length - because it states that "Generally men have longer ring fingers than index fingers, whereas in women these fingers are close to equal,"

In this study "The distance of the tip of the index and ring finger was measured from the tip of the third digit in 80 male and 80 female, right-handed patients with DSM-IV diagnosis of schizophrenia and in 80 right-handed healthy comparison men and women. Schizophrenic men and women showed a more ''feminine'' phenotype of the index and ring fingers in both hands than same-sex controls."

Perhaps they'll soon include a finger length analysis as part of the diagnosis process for schizophrenia (in addition to the new smell test being developed, and brain scans) - progress is starting to speed up in schizophrenia research it seems.

Hmmm...Looking down at my hands - I see that my ring finger is substantially shorter than my middle/index finger - not a good sign.


Thanks for an interesting read

Posted by: pictionary at April 22, 2004 01:12 PM

Post a comment

Please enter this code to enable your comment -
Remember Me?
(you may use HTML tags for style)
* indicates required