In new study findings that will surprise no one with a Y chromosome, New York researchers have determined that male brains are biologically hard-wired to choose sex over food.
The study by the University of Rochester Medical Centre indicates subtle changes in the brain's circuitry dictate differences in behavior between males and females, and predispose males to place procreation over food.
Although the research involved a species of roundworm called C elegans
, the scientists said the underlying biological mechanisms are the same in humans, The Telegraph
"While we know that human behavior is influenced by numerous factors, including cultural and social norms, these findings point to basic biological mechanisms that may not only help explain some differences in behavior between males and females, but why different sexes may be more susceptible to certain neurological disorders," said researcher Douglas Portman.
To reach their conclusions, Portman’s team put the worms in a petri dish and gave them the option of feeding or going in search of a mate. The found the male worms consistently left their food source to find a mate, even when they were genetically modified to be abnormally hungry.
The study, published in the journal Current Biology, suggests that the male worms were able to ignore or even suppress their hunger in favor of finding a mate.
"This adds to a growing body of evidence that sex-specific regulation of gene expression may play an important role in neural plasticity and, consequently, influence differences in behaviors — and in disease susceptibility — between the sexes," Portman said.
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