Excerpts: Exposure to an acute stressful event can enhance learning in male rats, whereas exposure to the same event dramatically impairs performance in females. Here we tested whether the presence of sex hormones during early development organizes these opposite effects of stress on learning in males vs. females. (...) Thus, the presence of sex hormones during gestation and development organizes whether and how acute stressful experience will affect the ability to acquire new information in adulthood. (...)these cognitive responses to stress appear to be masculinized by exposure to testosterone (...).
- Testosterone In Utero And At Birth Dictates How Stressful Experience Will Affect Learning In Adulthood, Tracey J. Shors, George Miesegaes, PNAS 2002;99 13955-13960