Nurturing voles

Posted in Random thoughts at 5:44 pm by ducky

The hormone vasopressin appears to regulate nurturing behaviour in males — at least in some voles. Prairie voles are monogamous; mountain voles are wildly polygamous. If you give prairie voles vasopressin, that triggers nurturing. In mountain voles, it doesn’t — but it turns out that mountain voles are missing a receptor for vasopressin that the prairie voles have. If you give the mountain voles the receptor, they become nurturing. See the story.

Meanwhile, it has long been known that oxytocin makes females more nurturing.

(There is nothing particularly new about this, I just decided to start making links to things that I think are really interesting that other people don’t seem to know about.)

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