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The findings and conclusions in this report are those of the authors and do not necessarily represent the official position of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
The ratio of the index (2nd) finger to ring (4th) finger lengths (2D:4D) is a proxy for fetal testosterone and estradiol. Studies suggesting 2D:4D is inversely associated with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) in males were limited by lack of confounder and subgroup assessments. Studies of females are sparse. We examined associations between ASD and 2D:4D among children in the Study to Explore Early Development; we considered case subgroups and numerous potential demographic and maternal-perinatal health confounders. We observed a modest inverse association between ASD and right-hand 2D:4D in males; subgroup analyses indicated associations were limited to ASD cases with birth defects/genetic syndromes or dysmorphic features. We observed a positive association between ASD and left-hand 2D:4D in females, overall and within most case subgroups.
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- Associations Between the 2nd to 4th Digit Ratio and Autism Spectrum Disorder in Population-Based Samples of Boys and Girls: Findings from the Study to Explore Early Development
Laura A. Schieve
Stuart K. Shapira
- Springer US