Studies Show That the Biology Underlying Pair Bonding and Parenting May Not be Dictated by Oxytocin Receptors

New research from scientists at UC San Francisco and Stanford Medicine is changing decades-old dogma and suggesting that oxytocin receptors, a hormone thought to be important in forming social bonds, may not play the crucial role that scientists attribute to them. last 30 years.

In a study published in Neuron on Jan. 27, 2023, the team found that prairie voles without oxytocin receptors reproduced and exhibited the same mating, attachment, and monogamous parenting behaviors as normal mice. In addition, females without oxytocin receptors gave birth and produced milk, albeit in smaller amounts, than female rats.

The results suggest that the biology underlying pair bonding and parenting is not solely dictated by oxytocin receptors, sometimes dubbed the “love hormone.”

The CRISPR mouse surprised us

Because the prairie mouse is one of the few mammalian species known to form lifelong monogamous relationships, the researchers studied them to better understand the biology of … Read the rest

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