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Volume 6, Issue 3 (September 2004) 6, 211–215;

Second to fourth digit ratio (2D:4D) and testosterone in men

J.T. Manning, S. Wood, E. Vang, J. Walton, P.E. Bundred, C. van Heyningen, D.I. Lewis-Jones

1.Department of Psychology, University of Central Lancashire, Preston PR1 2HE, UK
    2.Reproductive Medicine Unit , Liverpool Women's Hospital, Crown Street, Liverpool L8 7SS, UK
    3.Department of Medical Imaging, The University of Liverpool, PO Box 147, Liverpool L69 3BX,UK
    4.Department of Primary Care, The University of Liverpool, Liverpool L69 3GX,UK
    5.University Hospital Aintree, Liverpool L9 7AL, UK
    6.Department of Obstetrics & Gynaecology, University of Liverpool, Liverpool Women's Hospital, Crown Street, Liverpool L8 7SS, UK

Advance online publication 1 September 2004


Aim: To investigate the relationship between 2D:4D and testosterone in men attending an infertility clinic and men drawn from the general population. Methods: Data on 2D:4D and testosterone from two samples were collected: (1) 43 men attending an infertility clinic, and (2) 51 men drawn from the general population without regard to fertility. Results: In sample (1) there were negative associations between 2D:4D and testicular function, and men with lower 2D:4D in their right compared to left hand had higher testosterone levels than men with higher 2D:4D in their right compared to left hand. Sample (2) showed no significant associations between 2D:4D or side differences in 2D:4D and testosterone. Conclusion: Adult levels of testosterone may be related to aspects of 2D:4D in samples which contain men with compromised testicular function, but not in men from normative samples. Associations between 2D:4D and fertility-associated traits probably arise from early organisational effects of testosterone rather than from activational effects of current testosterone.

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