For decades, brain scientists have noticed that on average, male brains tend to have slightly higher total brain volume than female ones, even when corrected for males’ larger average body size.But it has proved notoriously tricky to pin down exactly which substructures within the brain are more or less voluminous.Adjusting for age, on average, they found that women tended to have significantly thicker cortices than men.
The study didn’t account for whether participants’ gender matched their biological designation as male or female.
Everyone’s had that one friend whose boyfriend they hated.
“You don’t live in isolation from others, and if your partner is always offending people, that’s going to end up having an effect on you,” says Whitbourne.
Now, the largest brain-imaging study of its kind indeed finds some sex-specific patterns, but overall more similarities than differences.
The work raises new questions about how brain differences between the sexes may influence intelligence and behavior.