Environmental influences in development of the transgender  

tamethytension 54M
1659 posts
8/9/2005 5:19 am

Last Read:
2/16/2007 6:44 pm

Environmental influences in development of the transgender

nightstogether in his nightstogether asks Who came first?

Specifically ...

"Could it be that these extra female components override the 'normal' male ones and effect our sexuality? Is that the reason why we have people caught in the wrong body, or homosexual?"

This has been an active area of toxicological physiology for seevral decades with the first strong hints of a basis for human sexual impacts published in the early '90s. Coincidentally, I was working in a genetics lab just down the hall from a research group actively involved in a US Federal Goverment task force looking into artificial estrogens. Although at the periphery of this research, I attended internal seminars that produced this understanding of the work at the time. Unfortunately, I have had only sporadic exposure to this line of research in recent years so I encourage interested partys to google key words such as "artificial estrogen in fetal development".

It is well established observation in dozens of species that sex can be switched during fetal development, regardless of the genetic game plan handed down by the parents, by exposure to environemntal influences. These influences are many and include those naturally occurring to which various organsism have adapted means by which to cope. However, a relatively new influence introduced within the environment stems from certain chemicals coming into widespread practice since WWII. It is well known that the breakdown products of a variety of chemicals such as DDT ... breaking down to DDE and others, act as artificial estrogens. The artificial estrogens are so-called as they bind to the estrogen receptor during development of the fetus. So while the fetus may be hard-wired (genetically encoded) to be male, the environmental contamination blocks or otherwise impedes physiological development as a male (testes if at all present fail to descend, and various other abnormalities). These then are males within female bodies. Furthermore some of these breakdown products (including that of PCBs) may initiate a change in as little as 7-8 parts per TRILLION ... EPA guidelines permit 10 times these concentrations in fish for example. This is why (along with mercury levels), pregnant women are frequently warned against consumption of freshwater fish. However, additional research has shown that the plastic lining of tin cans (in place as a safeguard against contamination of the food by bacteria for 40 years or more), may degrade over time in an acidic environment (e.g. tomato soup on the shelf for a time) again releasing potential artificial estrogens.

There is a substantial literature on the subject of artificial estrogens and I encourage readers to investigate further. As to this
having a role in either transgender or homosexuality, having been very close to this research as a grad student in the early 90's (several colleagues worked on this just down the hall), I am convinced these artificial estrogens play a role in the development of the transgender person. However, the mechanism DOES NOT track well as a model for explaning homosexuality away as an environmental anomaly (I personally hold that it is of a genetic origin, especially as ratios hold remarkably constant* across geographic areas and cultures; something one would not expect from a purely environmental influence).

*using reporting rates on A.F.F., Last fall I reviewed the sexuality status of some 3 million members across 30 US states, and a dozen countries from Europe to Australia. In a future blog, I hope to report the specific findings and also update those figures with a new look at the numbers this October. However, to summarize I found the reported homosexuality at an average level of 6.4% in men (range of 5.2 to 7.2 in US) and 8.8% in women (however the latter figure has a higher degree of uncertainty associated with smaller sample sizes).



red_hot_trucker 58F

11/28/2006 12:06 am

The Golden Egg

And another Golden Egg for you.

May your day be filled with joy and peace.


[post 1785076]

tamethytension replies on 11/28/2006 8:06 am:
Thank you

and peace to you


TheOracle2006 105F

11/27/2006 11:04 pm

Here is a golden egg for you.

The Golden Egg

I commented on this but the post didn't come up. Oh well... it was all about estrogen and women.

L'Oracle de L'Amour

Hi again

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