Pro8 variant of oxytocin facilitates fidelity in marmosets

Author #1

Abstract

Behavioral strategies that facilitate the preservation of high-quality social relationships are critical. Central oxytocin (OT) activity modulates these features of socially monogamous relationships in a number of mammalian species, and plays a vital role in the behavioral maintenance of long-term social relationships. Several distinct variants of OT have been identified in New World primates (including marmosets: Callithrix; Lee et al., 2011; Ren et al., 2013). The marmoset variant of oxytocin (Pro8-OT) is distinctly different than the consensus mammalian variant of oxytocin (Leu8-OT), due to a proline substitution at the 8th amino-acid position. The goal of the study was to determine if treatment with Pro8-OT, relative to treatments with Leu8-OT or an OT antagonist, had modulatory effects on the behavioral maintenance of long-term pair bonds in marmosets. Treatment with Pro8-OT, but not Leu8-OT, facilitated a behavioral strategy to minimize time spent in close proximity, and diminish the quality of sociosexual interactions, with an opposite-sex stranger. These results suggest that the OT system is responsible for reducing fidelity-threatening behaviors in long-term pair bonds.

 
Mar 7th, 11:30 AM Mar 7th, 11:45 AM

Pro8 variant of oxytocin facilitates fidelity in marmosets

UNO Criss Library, Room 112

Behavioral strategies that facilitate the preservation of high-quality social relationships are critical. Central oxytocin (OT) activity modulates these features of socially monogamous relationships in a number of mammalian species, and plays a vital role in the behavioral maintenance of long-term social relationships. Several distinct variants of OT have been identified in New World primates (including marmosets: Callithrix; Lee et al., 2011; Ren et al., 2013). The marmoset variant of oxytocin (Pro8-OT) is distinctly different than the consensus mammalian variant of oxytocin (Leu8-OT), due to a proline substitution at the 8th amino-acid position. The goal of the study was to determine if treatment with Pro8-OT, relative to treatments with Leu8-OT or an OT antagonist, had modulatory effects on the behavioral maintenance of long-term pair bonds in marmosets. Treatment with Pro8-OT, but not Leu8-OT, facilitated a behavioral strategy to minimize time spent in close proximity, and diminish the quality of sociosexual interactions, with an opposite-sex stranger. These results suggest that the OT system is responsible for reducing fidelity-threatening behaviors in long-term pair bonds.