Thinking like a man? Male DNA found in female brains

By Hanna Mohammed

The phrase act like a lady and think like a man has taken on new meaning. A Canadian researcher has discovered for the first time that the female brain contains prominent male DNA.

Researchers have discovered that the male DNA found in women’s brains most likely come from cells developed in a pregnancy with a baby boy.

During pregnancy, cells are exchanged between mother and fetus. After pregnancy, females retain a small number of cells from the fetus.

Women who have never been pregnant can also acquire male DNA from sharing the mother’s womb with a male twin. It was also found that male DNA could be acquired from non-radiated blood transfusions.

The finding suggests that if the male DNA can infiltrate the female brain then it can possibly have masculinizing effects on the female.

Scientists had previously found evidence of male microchimerisms in the blood, bone marrow, liver and other tissues of women, but never before had they realized that cells could cross the blood-brain barrier and thus live in the brain potentially for decades.

In an unexpected finding, researchers have also found that women with Alzheimer’s disease had less male DNA in their brains.

Women from the ages 37 to 59 were tested and 63 per cent had traces of male DNA in multiple regions of the brain.