Aussie researchers have reported finding a link between a gene and the production of testosterone in Male to Female transsexuals. After some ground breaking research on this condition which still baffles many people, there finally seems to be some light at the end of the tunnel.
The transsexual condition known in the medical field as Gender Dysphoria has long been a part of society dating back to Roman times. There are reports of crude sex change surgeries being done with stones and primitive tools. Throughout the ages the phenomenon has continued. Regardless of much skepticism by many in the medical profession the condition is still shrouded in controversy and often misunderstood, regardless of thousands seeking sex re-assignment surgery every year.
112 M2F transsexual volunteers underwent the study, and most of them were found to have a longer androgen receptor gene, resulting in a weaker distribution of testosterone in the individual. Testing was done on three specific genes involved in sexual development. These included the receptors for androgen and oestrogen and an enzyme that converts testosterone to oestrogen.
“We think that these genetic differences might reduce testosterone action and under-masculinise the brain during fetal development,” said Lauren Hare from Prince Henry’s Institute of Medical Research.
This evidence validates what many transgender people already believe to be fact. It was also stressed that other genes and biological factors may also play a part in forming one’s gender identity.
In the past there have been tests on the similarities between transgender brains and female brains but nothing conclusive due to a major lack of study in this field. Co-author Professor Vincent Harley added: “There is a social stigma that transsexualism is simply a lifestyle choice; however our findings support a biological basis of how gender identity develops.”
Hopefully these findings will not only help better educate society, but also those in the medical profession who treat those born with gender dysphoria.
Many transgender people have believed for the longest time that biology had been the cause. I myself believe this as my earliest memories were that of wanting to be a girl even before I learnt to spell. Hopefully further studies like this will prove beyond a shadow of doubt that the phenomenon is a natural occurrence, leading to social acceptance of transgender people.