There are no significant differences in the brains of men and women, either in terms of memory or emotional responsiveness. Many other gender differences including a larger size in the male have been proven inaccurate in a new study.
The meta-analytical study undertaken by researchers at Rosalind Franklin University of Medicine and Science in Chicago collated the findings from 76 studies involving more than 6,000 people to arrive at the conclusion. The study was published in the journal Neuroimage.
Examining the hippocampi in male and female brains, the study found no major difference. This is the part of the brain responsible for memory and emotion.
Earlier studies have been contradicting. While one claimed the hippocampus to be larger in women in relative comparison to the whole brain, a Cambridge study in 2014 proclaimed the male brain the winner.
"Many people believe there is such a thing as a 'male brain' and a 'female brain,'" said Lise Eliot, associate professor of neuroscience at Rosalind Franklin and the study's lead author. "But when you look beyond the popularized studies—at collections of all the data—you often find that the differences are minimal."
Research in the past has also found that female brains are on average 8% smaller than male brains. However, there has been no proven link between size and intelligence.
The latest study also refuted any difference in the way male and female brains understand their left and right hemispheres and process language. The researchers also discredit any size variation in the corpus callosum, the nerve tissue bundle that connects the two sides of the brain to communicate.
Any gender differences between the brains are "tiny" and more the result of environmental factors, Gina Rippon, a neuroscientist at Aston University in Birmingham, England told The Telegraph.