Brain Play Continued

July 18, 2009 | Leave a Comment

Category: Ontogeny

OK, let’s take the garden hose analogy a little further.  B = brain, CC = corpus callosum.  (See yesterday’s entry for what’s going on here.)

Fat Hose with Small Nozzle        Big B/Little CC     late puberty         Schizo Paranoid
Fat Hose with Fat Nozzle            Big B/Big CC        late puberty         Autism
Small Hose with Small Nozzle    Little B/Little CC  early puberty       Normal
Small Hose with Fat Nozzle        Little B/Big CC     early puberty       Schizo Depressed

Here puberty further exaggerates a tendency to exhibit a nonuseful condition.  A question is to what degree gender influences this paradigm.  In schizophrenia, males often contract the disorder several years before a female does.  It’s not as if a woman’s brain grows smaller over the intervening time, but her brain continues to grow while a male’s brain does not.  Why would a larger brain increase the likelihood of a female contracting the disorder but not increase the likelihood of a male contracting the disorder?

I seem to vaguely remember that manic depression in females is often accompanied by early puberty.

In my autism hypothesis based on a heterochronic interpretation of recent human evolution, males and females exhibit autism in complementary opposite ways.  Pubertal onset is not a factor because autism is an early childhood condition.  Still, while autistic males are hypothesized to have brains larger than the conventional male, autistic females are estimated to have brains about the same size as the conventional female.  This is because autism, as an evolutionary condition, emerges as a child moves back in evolutionary time.  I hypothesize that 100,000 years ago males had bigger brains.

How exactly this juxtaposes with the garden hose analogy is not clear to me, but it seems that the timing of schizophrenia and bipolar onset is a major clue.


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