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J Psychiatr Res. 2013 Dec;47(12):2015-7. doi: 10.1016/j.jpsychires.2013.08.023. Epub 2013 Sep 7.

On the quest for a biomechanism of transsexualism: is there a role for BDNF?

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Department of Psychiatry and Psychotherapy, Central Institute of Mental Health, Medical Faculty Mannheim, Heidelberg University, J 5, 68159 Mannheim, Germany. Electronic address:


Previous studies hypothesized a neurobiological mechanism for gender identity disorder (GID). Recently a possible role for serum brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) was suggested on the basis of reduced serum BDNF levels in male-to-female individuals. Here we review the question whether there is indeed a role of BDNF in the development of transsexualism.


Gender identity disorder; Male to female; Neurobiology; Neuroplasticity; Transgender; Transsexual

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