Autistic features in girls from a psychiatric sample are strongly associated with a low 2D:4D ratio

Autism. 2009 Sep;13(5):511-21. doi: 10.1177/1362361309335720.


Autistic features such as deficits in social interactions and communication have been associated with a low 2D:4D ratio in normal children.This study assessed this association in a large sample of children with a variety of psychiatric disorders (n = 35 girls and n = 147 boys). Autistic features were assessed with a highly valid and reliable measure (Autism Diagnostic Observation Schedule-Generic). Correlations between the 2D:4D ratio and autistic features were computed separately for boys and girls. Some small negative correlations (r = -0.17 and r = -0.19) were found in the right hand for boys; however, particularly in girls, large negative correlations (r = -0.51 to r = -0.64) were found in the left hand. A low 2D:4D ratio in girls was highly predictive of the presence of autistic features. Thus, a low ratio could possibly be used as a diagnostic predictor in clinical practice.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Child
  • Child Development Disorders, Pervasive / pathology
  • Child Development Disorders, Pervasive / psychology*
  • Communication Disorders / pathology
  • Communication Disorders / psychology
  • Female
  • Fingers / anatomy & histology*
  • Humans
  • Interpersonal Relations
  • Male
  • Mental Disorders / pathology
  • Mental Disorders / psychology*
  • Sex Characteristics