Estrogen and lifelong brain health, testosterone fraud

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/26109339

Estrogen facilitates higher cognitive functions by exerting effects on brain regions such as the prefrontal cortex and hippocampus. Estrogen induces spinogenesis and synaptogenesis in these two brain regions and also initiates a complex set of signal transduction pathways via estrogen receptors (ERs). Along with the classical genomic effects mediated by activation of ER α and ER β, there are membrane-bound ER α, ER β, and G protein-coupled estrogen receptor 1 (GPER1) that can mediate rapid nongenomic effects. All key ERs present throughout the body are also present in synapses of the hippocampus and prefrontal cortex. This review summarizes estrogen actions in the brain from the standpoint of their effects on synapse structure and function, noting also the synergistic role of progesterone. We first begin with a review of ER subtypes in the brain and how their abundance and distributions are altered with aging and estrogen loss (e.g., ovariectomy or menopause) in the rodent, monkey, and human brain. As there is much evidence that estrogen loss induced by menopause can exacerbate the effects of aging on cognitive functions, we then review the clinical trials of hormone replacement therapies and their effectiveness on cognitive symptoms experienced by women. Finally, we summarize studies carried out in nonhuman primate models of age- and menopause-related cognitive decline that are highly relevant for developing effective interventions for menopausal women. Together, we highlight a new understanding of how estrogen affects higher cognitive functions and synaptic health that go well beyond its effects on reproduction.

Men dosing testosterone are called meatheads for a reason, they would logically throw off their other hormones and functionally retard themselves. Because this ONE time, you can trust the pill people. No IQ studies in testosterone supplementing men, I guess there’s a good reason. They just forgot?

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4330791/

The results are, unfortunately, controversial and puzzling. Dosing, timing, even the application route seem to considerably affect the outcomes. 

You’re not trying to rig it at all, huh?

Reduction to dihydrotestosterone by 5-alpha reductase increases the androgen activity; conversion to estradiol by aromatase converts the androgen to estrogen activity.

Holy shit.

That’s hilarious.

Recently, the non-genomic effects of testosterone on behavior bypassing the nuclear receptors have attracted the interest of researchers. This review tries to summarize the current understanding of the complexity of the effects of testosterone on brain with special focus on their role in the known sex differences.

Not known.

a very important study in rhesus monkeys showed that pharmacological castration reduced and testosterone supplementation normalized anxiety levels (Suarez-Jimenez et al., ).

on the other hand, in both men and women, testosterone supplementation leads to improvement of depressive symptoms (Pope et al., ; Miller et al., ). However, not all interventional studies confirmed the anti-depressant effect of testosterone. At least in one published randomized controlled trial, the effects of testosterone were comparable to placebo effects (Seidman et al., ). Similarly, not all observational studies show a consistent picture. At least in one small study, depressive women had higher testosterone (Weber et al., ).

Another experiment on intact rats revealed that the effect of testosterone on depression is dose-dependent (Buddenberg et al., ).

Over the counter won’t work.

During the productive ages and even in early adulthood, men generally outperform women in spatial abilities (Linn and Petersen, )

Even for a few years you’re in college? Is that it?

Spatial thing is probably due to error, thus would be discounted under a valid method.

Error rate as well as the reaction time negatively correlated with testosterone (Hooven et al., ).

In another study, actual testosterone was not associated with spatial abilities, but prenatal testosterone correlated positively with spatial abilities in women (Kempel et al., ).

Congratulations, you’re on the female level. Apply your non-toxic internet cream.

In line with these findings is the lack of an association between actual salivary testosterone levels and mental rotation in men and women (Puts et al., ).

Actual science, no replication issue.

However, in a large observational study analyzing spatial abilities in adult men from various age categories, low testosterone was associated with better spatial visualization (Yonker et al., ).

Actual science, no replication issue.

Plus multiple ages in ADULT men, important.

Good work.

In a very interesting study, it was found that in men, the pubertal concentrations of testosterone are negatively associated with mental rotation in the adulthood (Vuoksimaa et al., ). In the same paper, the comparison of twins is reported. The twin with higher testosterone scored worse in the mental rotation tests. The results are contradictory, but may depend on the test used for the assessment of spatial abilities.

Counting fluke correct answers and not errors to force a finding is scientism. Bad method.

When virtual Morris water maze was used, a positive correlation between testosterone and spatial navigation was found in women, but not in men (Burkitt et al., ). The size of the corpus callosum seems to add complexity in the relationship between spatial abilities and testosterone (Karadi et al., ). This might be one of the causes for negative findings in studies where some of the determinants are missing (Kubranska et al., ). Another cause is likely the selection of the tested population. In gifted children, a negative correlation between salivary testosterone and spatial abilities was found (Ostatnikova et al., ).

FFS.

Negative findings are real science.

And that’s important.

In Chinese men, the accuracy in mental rotation tests was comparable to Americans, but the reaction times were longer indicating that cultural differences could add to the variability of published results (Yang et al., ).

No they didn’t rush the test out of boredom. Lower error rate, I’d bet.

Last but not least, genetic factors likely modulate the effect of testosterone. We have previously shown that at least in gifted boys, genetic polymorphisms influencing testosterone metabolism affect also its relationship to mental rotation (Celec et al., ). Especially, the CAG short tandem repeat in the exon 1 of the androgen receptor gene seems to be important for the action of testosterone and its metabolites (Nowak et al., ). Despite all complexity, the current picture indicates that the association between testosterone and spatial abilities is curvilinear and sex-dependent.

aka more is NOT better and it’s genetic, morons

In women higher testosterone is associated with better mental rotation, in men lower testosterone is associated with better spatial abilities. This seems to be true both for actual testosterone (Moffat and Hampson, ) and for prenatal testosterone (Grimshaw et al., ). Supplementation of testosterone in older men results in improvement of spatial abilities, but it is accompanied with changes in estradiol metabolism and it is likely that this interferes with modifications of spatial abilities (Janowsky et al., ).

They only studied spatial, not global, I checked.

Even in rats, testosterone administration affects the strategy of the animals in spatial tasks (Spritzer et al., ). However, the interaction between testosterone and mental rotation tests is bidirectional. It has been shown that mental rotation testing affects testosterone, at least in women (Durdiakova et al., ).

Doing smart things causes the brain to…. adapt? Really?

Does our pulse increase when we run? Some Sherlock Holmes do a fucking study.

MRI

Moreover, participants with complete androgen insensitivity syndrome presented with female-like neural activation pattern in the parietal lobe, indicating that gonadal hormone exposure rather than genetic sex itself plays role in brain functions (Van Hemmen et al., ).

Supplementing won’t work, you’re worse than the trannies. They don’t claim brain benefits.

The menstrual cycle and thus the involvement of sex hormones, including testosterone, in spatial abilities was further confirmed by Pletzer et al. In their study, error rates linked with deactivation of inferior parietal lobes and prefrontal lobes were higher during luteal phase for verbal tasks, while in the follicular phase, spatial abilities in females were confirmed (Pletzer et al., ).

One of the major factors that might explain the differences between the results of various studies is the variability of the examined populations. As mentioned above, the cultural differences, sex and age have all been shown to impact the physiological effects of testosterone. 

Duh.

Standardization in this area would surely improve our understanding of the neuroendocrinology of testosterone. More systematic research using the whole spectrum of available tools and looking at the various physiological aspects is needed. However, to be able to publish such research, journals should accept manuscripts based on the design and not on the results. Otherwise, the publication bias that is obvious in the so far published literature will continue to be a big issue. Many researchers in this field complain about negative results that are very difficult to publish in the relevant journals. The number of such unpublished observations and experiments is unknown. But based on our humble experience, the negative results will probably be more common than the published positive ones. And if the contradictory published findings are added, the picture gets even more confusing. Large systematic research projects with more cooperation between the most productive research teams is definitely needed.

You can’t because the low IQ men will complain if you publish negative findings.

e.g.

https://ohsu.pure.elsevier.com/en/publications/testosterone-influences-spatial-cognition-in-older-men-2

Testosterone plays a role in the organization of behavior during development. The authors examined whether testosterone could play a maintenance role in behavior as well. In a double-blind manner, verbal and visual memory, spatial cognition, motor speed, cognitive flexibility, and mood in a group of healthy older men who were supplemented for 3 months with testosterone were assessed. The increase in testosterone levels to 150% of baseline levels resulted in a significant enhancement of spatial cognition, but no change in any other cognitive domain was found.

You’ll be slightly more able to parallel park. Like when you were young.

Louder for the slow:

no change in any other

cognitive domain was found

NO IMPROVEMENT IN MEMORY

NO IMPROVEMENT IN MOTOR SPEED

NO IMPROVEMENT IN COGNITIVE FLEXIBILITY

NO IMPROVEMENT IN MOOD.

Did I stutter?

Testosterone supplementation influenced the endogenous production of estradiol, and estradiol was found to have an inverse relationship to spatial cognitive performance. These results suggest that testosterone supplementation can modify spatial cognition in older men; however, it is likely that this occurs through testosterone’s influence on estrogen.

I’m sure the health effects will be golden.

White perceptual supremacist babies

Yes, I am joking.

https://www.researchgate.net/publication/5816873_The_Other-Race_Effect_Develops_During_Infancy_Evidence_of_Perceptual_Narrowing

However, instincts and perceptual detail clue us into evolved needs.

e.g.

the tribe over is a bigger threat to spot than someone one continent over.

On the positive side, it allows natural affection needs to be met. The Cinderella effect applies within a race, remember.

 

Neural network clusters by function – proof

http://medicalxpress.com/news/2015-06-neuroscientists-multiple-cortical-regions.html

“There’s an emerging view in neuroscience that cortical processing is a combination of a network of dynamic areas exchanging information—rather than a patchwork of modules—and that’s what we found,”

Like I said the other day. Don’t make me look. Here’s one on tied behavioural clusters in the genome united under a single gene trait.

That ‘view’ has been around for years and widely mocked as ‘pseudoscience’ for being holistic and dualist (because it relies on emergent phenomena and reject direct physicalism from neuron to neuron).

Processing “below the water”

Sounds New Age, doesn’t it? Intentional dig.

I saw it coming and I still don't care, funny really

Who’s laughing now?

Connectome > Localisation focus

And structural differences are genetic, mind.

I’m on a rollagay.

 

Logical rudeness in debates

When your opponent isn’t using logic? Or reality? Or objectivity?

http://legacy.earlham.edu/~peters/writing/rudeness.htm

(Logical rudeness)…Unlike a petitio, it does not purport to justify a conclusion or belief; it purports to justify believers in disregarding criticism of their beliefs as if such criticism were inapplicable, irrelevant, or symptomatic of error. This is not self-justification in the manner of a petitio, in which assumed premises can validly imply the disputed conclusion.

Sum: If somebody isn’t playing by the rules of formal debate, they bring the whole thing down and might be excluded.

…”Philosophers have no equivalent of default except the presumption that the silent or rude theorist has no answer on the merits to offer, and (qua individual proponent) may be presumed ignorant or incorrect and dismissed. This presumption, however, is very legalistic, and in many cases will be false.”…

Practice of Law =/= ” ” Science

It may seem that the imputation of a foible or fault to a critic simply qua critic is always optional, never necessary to preserve the consistency of the theory or the good faith of the proponent. But this is not true. First, there is the case of the brazen theory which includes as a tenet the forthright equation of disagreement and error. This tenet is not as rare, nor probably as naive, as one might at first suspect. It may be called (using legal jargon) the “exclusivity clause” of the theory. Any theory may have an exclusivity clause, and most theories may have them without contradicting their own content. The “clause” merely states that the set of tenets comprising the theory is the truth and the only truth on its precise subject. It does not imply completeness; but it does imply that propositions inconsistent with the theory are false. It may be tacit and understood, and indeed it does seem to follow from the mere claim of truth according to the principle of excluded middle (tacit in many theories) and most classical notions of truth. If a theory contains an exclusivity clause, even a tacit one, it impels the good faith proponent to equate disagreement and error. Critics may courteously be indulged in the realm of debate, and cajoled into seeing the light, if possible, but that would be supererogatory under the canons of logic and good faith. One premise of “civilized” debate —that any contender might be speaking the truth and debate is one way to tell who— is not shared by all the contenders. For this reason it is disturbing to note that almost any claim to truth may bear a tacit exclusivity clause.

If you are being purely logical and the other person comes up with a personal story, you can, in most instances, rightfully call them an idiot for using that as a parry to your point. It’s like bringing a spoon to a knife fight.

Even more disturbing is the case of philosophical systems. The paradigm of good philosophy for several western traditions —the complete, consistent system— is impelled to be rude….

If the system is supposed to be complete as well as true, then the good faith proponent must believe the critic in error, and therefore must apply the system’s explanation of error to her. Note that mere belief in the completeness and truth of the system suffices here to justify the conclusion that disagreement is error. The good faith proponent need not immediately act on this belief in the critic’s error, but neither can he escape concluding it, any more than he could willingly suspend judgment on the truth of his beliefs. Proponents of what are supposed to be true, complete, consistent systems must choose between apostasy and rudeness. [DS: rude people tell the truth] They must defend their beliefs either by appeal to premises and principles from outside the system, which they believe are false, or by appeal to premises and principles from withing the system, which is question-begging and liable to be very rude. [demonstration of depth of explanation] This may be called the dilemma of systematic self-defense. To ask such a believer to be logically polite “just for the sake of argument” is equivalent to asking him to give up some tenets of the faith he wishes to defend just to enter a realm of debate to defend it. This is why systems with pretensions to completeness have traditionally seemed rude, have traditionally authorized rude defenses in their proponents, or have gone undefended at fundamental levels….

…Logical rudeness may be considered a complex form of ad hominem argument. It tells critics and dissenters that they are defective human beings whose ignorance or error is well explained as frailty, fault, foible, or the absence of a boon. Moreover, this form of ad hominem is justified by the theory under attack. When our questions are answered by ad hominem assaults, we are angered. Our anger cannot be reduced to hurt feelings because we were not merely wounded in our dignity; we were put off in our inquiries for truth by a refusal to cooperate. A rude response can therefore trigger three levels of indignation: personal affront, thwarted cooperation, and crippled inquiry. The first is personal, the second social and political, and the third epistemic.

..Some form of rudeness seems inevitable. Either the equality principle will be violated by the rude theory that critics are unequally entitled to know the truth, [as if equally capable of understanding, psychometrics be damned] or the freedom principle will be violated by the rude theory that critics are making impermissible moves in a game. These two fundamental types of rudeness can be barred only by one another. To secure some courtesies, then, we must impose other rude principles. There is something Gödelian about this result. No system of logical etiquette can be both complete and consistent. For every such system there will be a permissible but rude theory. ….

…..The automatic inference of falsehood from rudeness or undebatability may be called the fallacy of petulance —in which we peevishly allow our hurt feelings to supersede our better judgement. The fallacy of petulance is to use the criteria of courtesy as criteria (or as a subset of the criteria) of truth. Sociability in debate may be important for many reasons, even for the fundamental epistemic reason of keeping debate a fruitful avenue of inquiry and for basic ethical duties to other inquirers; but its norms do not thereby become criteria of truth. ……

….The danger of legislating a style of thinking in order to secure a form of cooperation is real.  ….

Trigger warnings, anyone?

Rational therapy as applied to Millennials

Nerd-out Explanation: REBT is in my view superior to modern CBT (Cognitive-Behavioural Therapy, not Cock n’ Ball Torture, don’t search, I wish I hadn’t). Modern CBT blames the patient for having emotions/being human and tries to suppress undesirable ones with unreasonable faux rationalizations and requests e.g. in a nutshell: mantras, think happy thoughts. It functions to make the patient worse by a suppression/explosion cycle (aka relapse) and keep psychologists cashing big fat checks for the lifetime of ‘service’.
REBT examines and picks over the false belief system EVERYONE to some extent (more pervasive in the mentally ill) has and how these inform our perceptions of the world. When conflicting with reality (instead of acting as a natural means of intrinsic support), those false beliefs cause acute (curable) symptoms of mental illness, most commonly the umbrella term depression.

I’ll cut out the nerdiness now.

Without further ado, here is REBT roughly applied or translated to real-world examples of psychological perceptual problems stereotypical to my generation, Generation Y (do I have to pay so much).

  • Without a 4.0 GPA into college I’m worthless, I’m too white and middle class to get into a Tier 1 University without AA to fall back on.
  • University is always a valuable choice.
  • You are special despite doing nothing of particular merit whatsoever and you are entitled to better treatment than others. When you fail to receive this, it is everyone else’s fault.
  • It doesn’t matter which degree I pick so I guess choosing the easiest one will give me exactly the same chances in life later on. It’s my right to demand exorbitant salaries from evil capitalists for the making the choice to study the stupidest shit.
  • Student debt isn’t real debt.
  • Credit cards are like free money. I’ll definitely be rich in the future so who cares.
  • My parents will have the money to bail me out forever even if they can’t afford to retire.
  • I can wait for my fertility to dwindle to have children because their health won’t suffer, I’ll be equally capable of carrying or caring for them and IVF is a guaranteed success.
  • Every STD is curable and abortion has no negative side effects whatsoever.
  • My parents will support everything I do, even when they didn’t support one another long enough to avoid divorce. If they were married in the first place. Single parenthood is equal to a couple, in spite of being exactly half of the natural input.
  • Companies reward loyalty and working from the bottom of the ladder up is an option in this century. If I am not CEO in a year, the place is mistreating me because I am eternally worthy.
  • Be yourself and anyone who doesn’t love that doesn’t deserve you anyway. This opinion doesn’t make you a backward asshole, it is because you are inherently special and never need to change.
  • Social media proves how beloved I am. It isn’t a censored echo chamber.
  • You cannot be ignorant if your reality-avoiding teachers told you differently.
  • People who boomeranged away from the real world straight back to school again aren’t immature and mentally deficient, they’re flawless, solid sources of advice which affect the trajectory of your entire life.
  • My value is not in what I can prove, but in what I feel in my heart, placed there by sycophants like the marketing media.
  • I am owed a living by the world/Government/parents and this is not at all parasitical, I should be proud to live in a society which does this. They are blessed by my company and any question of self-sufficiency is an unjust affront to my ego.
  • Lifestyle choices have no repercussions or consequences and any form of those are in fact oppression despite my adult choice in the matter.
  • The economy cannot get worse, let’s party instead of doing anything productive.
  • I am not limited by things beyond my control (race, sex, religion, IQ) which become worse (age). I am limited by a lack of self-belief.
  • Identity trumps everything. I am not a person with X, who Y. I am X, Y person. Except nationalism, patriotism or exclusive pride. That would be evil.
  • There is no such thing as good and evil because nothing I do could ever be wrong.
  • Nothing about the past requires gratitude. All things we do now are superior. I am superior in intelligence to everyone who came before me without exception. My beliefs are proof. None of them could possibly go wrong and my ancestors couldn’t have had good reasons for being such bigots.
  • I have no problems. The problem is the world and every problem in the world is artificial and hence, can be fixed. I will save the world, I was destined to.
  • I have a right to the best. Food, clothes, location, holidays.
  • I can display moral superiority by spouting the correct opinions but needn’t live by them. This hypocrisy doesn’t inflict deep damage by dissonance, it is freedom.
  • There is no such thing as freedom for someone who disagrees with me. How dare they? Don’t they know who I am? I must punish them.

Expect the MI rates to rise astronomically. Sadly, the professionals have no incentive to help, dragging it out into a lifelong identity.

For a cheerier subject take: http://www.waitbutwhy.com/2013/09/why-generation-y-yuppies-are-unhappy.html

 

Why do humans argue?

Because there’s a wrong way to do things and we need to defend it.

paper pdf, here’s select from the abstract section ;

“Our hypothesis is that the function of reasoning is argumentative. It is to devise and evaluate arguments intended to persuade.” [DS: good]

“Skilled arguers, however, are not after the truth but after arguments supporting their views.” [ehh, sorta]

“Reasoning so motivated can distort evaluations and attitudes and allow erroneous beliefs to persist. [that’s poor reasoning and should be discounted from pure theory]

Proactively used reasoning also favors decisions that are easy to justify but not necessarily better. In all these instances traditionally described as failures or flaws, reasoning does exactly what can be expected of an argumentative device: Look for arguments that support a given conclusion … favour conclusions for which arguments can be found.”

I like cogpsych papers, but they tend to miss the wider picture and the subtlety of linguistics in rhetoric e.g. emphasis.
Social signalling, in short. If your social reputation depends on empirical truth, suddenly it becomes the primary priority. This is why politicians don’t have lifelong careers at the top. Ownership is separate from outcome.
A theme that could be applied to this blog: smug