Disorders of penis development are on the rise and we’re not sure why

By Mark Green and Andrew Pask

In prenatal ultrasounds or at delivery, many new parents look between their baby’s legs: the presence of a penis is taken as a strong sign that it’s a boy.

For humans and other animals, development of a penis was thought to be driven by “male hormones” (androgens) produced entirely by the testes of the male fetus as it grows in the uterus.

However, a new paper released today indicates this might not be the case.

New Study Finds Abortion Restrictions Like Mandatory Waiting Periods, Counseling Don’t Work as Intended

rewire news, May 2, 2017

In a new study, researchers discovered that abortion restrictions like mandatory waiting periods and forced counseling often don’t affect a patient’s certainty about having an abortion. In some cases, such sessions even increase their confidence in their decision to have an abortion.

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  • Access full text of journal paper here

Mystery of the female orgasm may be solved

Guardian, Monday 1 August 2016

The purpose of the euphoric sensation of the female orgasm has long perplexed scientists, as it is not necessary for conception, and is often not experienced by women during sex itself. Now researchers in the US say they might have found its evolutionary roots. Human female orgasm, they say, might be a spin-off from our evolutionary past, when the hormonal surges that accompany it were crucial for reproduction.

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  • Access journal paper The Evolutionary Origin of Female Orgasm here

 

Biological sex redefined

Nature, 18 February 2015

According to the simple scenario, the presence or absence of a Y chromosome is what counts: with it, you are male, and without it, you are female. But doctors have long known that some people straddle the boundary — their sex chromosomes say one thing, but their gonads (ovaries or testes) or sexual anatomy say another.

Read more here