See Those Fingers? Do the Math. ‘Boys with the longest ring fingers relative to their index fingers tend to excel in math, according to a new study. In girls, shorter ring fingers predict better verbal skills. The link, according to the researchers, is that testosterone levels in the womb influence both finger length and brain development.
Credit: Dr. Mark Brosnan – University of Bath
Scientists have been interested for years in the observation that ratios of finger lengths differ in men and women. In men, the ring (fourth) finger is usually longer than the index (second); their so-called 2D:4D ratio is lower than 1. In females, the two fingers are more likely to be the same length. Because of this sex difference, some scientists believe that a low ratio could be a marker for higher prenatal testosterone levels, although it’s not clear how the hormone might influence finger development. The 2D:4D ratio has also been fingered in connection with brain-related characteristics–most often in males–such as depression, left-handedness, musical ability, and homosexuality.’