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Hormones and Behavior

Sandra Olvera-Hernández, Alejandra Hernández, Rebeca Reyes, Alonso Fernández-Guasti
Repeated testing for masculine sexual behavior influences female sex preference in males. Males perinatally treated with aromatase inhibitors show male preference, but also copulate with the receptive female. Such copulation modifies sex preference most likely because of its rewarding properties. In this study, we intended to equal the incentive value of both stimuli -in the sex preference test- by using receptive females with vaginal occlusion. Vehicle and letrozole-treated (0.56 μg/kg, gestation days 10-21) males were repeatedly tested for sex preference at 40, 55, 70, 85 and 100 days of age...
February 12, 2019: Hormones and Behavior
Marissa Soto, Robert Lewis, J Thomas Curtis
Male, but not female, prairie voles that experience chronic exposure to inorganic mercury display aberrant social behavior - avoiding unfamiliar conspecifics rather than approaching them. The mechanisms that underlie such behavioral changes are unknown, but likely involve the hypothalamus-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis. We tested this hypothesis by providing voles of both sexes with mercury chloride in their drinking water for ten weeks and then staging same-sex dyadic encounters after which plasma was assayed for corticosterone as an index of HPA activity...
February 12, 2019: Hormones and Behavior
Anna Strandqvist, Lisa Örtqvist, Louise Frisén, Agneta Nordenskjöld, Agneta Herlitz, Anna Nordenström
BACKGROUND: Hypospadias is a common malformation of the male external genitalia that results in urethral displacement with different levels of severity. Male genital development during the fetal period is dependent on androgen function, while the etiology of hypospadias differs and can be multifactorial. The psychosocial outcome is sometimes affected, but according to several studies acceptable. The question of whether hypospadias is associated with differences in psychosexual development has been investigated previously, with mixed results...
February 8, 2019: Hormones and Behavior
Nathana J Mezzomo, Barbara D Fontana, Talise E Müller, Tâmie Duarte, Vanessa A Quadros, Julia Canzian, Aline Pompermaier, Suelen M Soares, Gessi Koakoski, Vania L Loro, Denis B Rosemberg, Leonardo J G Barcellos
The zebrafish (Danio rerio) is used as an emergent model organism to investigate the behavioral and physiological responses to stress. The anxiolytic-like effects of taurine in zebrafish support the existence of different mechanisms of action, which can play a role in preventing stress-related disorders (i.e., modulation of GABAA , strychnine-sensitive glycine, and NMDA receptors, as well as antioxidant properties). Herein, we investigate whether taurine modulates some behavioral and biochemical responses in zebrafish acutely submitted to chemical and mechanical stressors...
February 8, 2019: Hormones and Behavior
Amy M Smith, Gregory I Hughes, F Caroline Davis, Ayanna K Thomas
Acute psychological stress consistently impairs episodic memory, which consists of memory for events that are associated with a specific context. However, researchers have not yet established how stress influences semantic memory, which consists of general knowledge that is devoid of context. In the present study, participants either underwent stress induction or a control task prior to taking a trivia test that was designed to measure semantic memory. In contrast to the wealth of prior research on episodic memory, we found that stress enhanced semantic-memory retrieval...
February 8, 2019: Hormones and Behavior
Kathleen E Hunt, Thomas P Hahn, C Loren Buck, John C Wingfield
In many passerine birds, testosterone stimulates song and aggression but inhibits paternal care, but few studies have explored whether such effects can be reversed with testosterone blockers. We explored the effect of testosterone blockers on song, aggression and paternal care of Lapland longspurs (Calcarius lapponicus), an arctic passerine with a short breeding season. Twenty-one "blocker males" received implants containing an androgen receptor blocker and an aromatase inhibitor, compared to 27 control males with empty or no implants...
February 5, 2019: Hormones and Behavior
Christian E Deuter, Katja Wingenfeld, Katharina Schultebraucks, Christian Otte, Linn K Kuehl
The influence of stress on executive functions has been demonstrated in numerous studies and is potentially mediated by the stress-induced cortisol release. Yet, the impact of cortisol on cognitive flexibility and task switching in particular remains equivocal. In this study, we investigated the influence of pharmacological glucocorticoid receptor (GR) and mineralocorticoid receptor (MR) stimulation, two corticosteroid receptor types known to be responsible for cortisol effects on the brain. We conducted two experiments, each with 80 healthy participants (40 women and 40 men), and tested the effect of the unspecific MR/GR agonist hydrocortisone (Experiment I) and the more specific MR agonist fludrocortisone (Experiment II) on switch costs and task rule congruency in a bivalent, cued task switching paradigm...
February 1, 2019: Hormones and Behavior
Arielle R Strzelewicz, Evelyn Ordoñes Sanchez, Alejandro N Rondón-Ortiz, Anthony Raneri, Sydney T Famularo, Debra A Bangasser, Amanda C Kentner
Early life exposure to a low security setting, characterized by a scarcity of resources and limited food access, increases the risk for psychiatric illness and metabolic dysfunction. We utilized a translational rat model to mimic a low security environment and determined how this manipulation affected offspring behavior, metabolism, and puberty. Because food insecurity in humans is associated with reduced access to healthy food options the "low security" rat manipulation combined a Western diet with exposure to a limited bedding and nesting manipulation (WD-LB)...
January 29, 2019: Hormones and Behavior
William F Fritz, Lena S Sena, Susan E Becker, Larry S Katz
The behavioral and endocrine activation of sexual behaviors exhibited by male goats, especially self-enurination (SE), is poorly understood. In the first experiment, to assess the influence of socio-sexual context on SE in bucks, the effects of distance from does, the presence of estrous versus non-estrous does and the presence of another buck on SE and courtship frequencies of intact male goats (bucks; n = 12) were tested using a unique behavior test apparatus. For experiments 2 and 3, to test the relative contributions of sex steroid hormones and socio-sexual context on SE, castrated male goats (wethers; n = 20) were randomly divided into five groups and injected for seven weeks with one of the following: 25 mg testosterone propionate (T), 25 mg dihydrotestosterone propionate (DHT), 100 μg estradiol benzoate (E), 100 μg E and 25 mg DHT (E + DHT), or oil (CON)...
January 29, 2019: Hormones and Behavior
Christine A Gerson, Conall E Mac Cionnaith, Gonzalo R Quintana, James G Pfaus
Fifty-kHz ultrasonic vocalizations (USVs) are emitted by adult rats during appetitive phases of behavior in response to stimuli thought to be associated with a positive affective state. In particular, 50-kHz USVs with rapid frequency oscillations, known as trills and flat-trills, in which these oscillations are flanked by a monotonic portion, are together positively correlated with appetitive behaviors such as rough and tumble play, drug and natural reward, and mating. Female rats produce 50-kHz USVs during a variety of sexual contexts, yet data are still vague as female sexual behavior is seldom studied on its own...
January 25, 2019: Hormones and Behavior
Nicholas M Grebe, Marco Del Giudice, Melissa Emery Thompson, Nora Nickels, Davide Ponzi, Samuele Zilioli, Dario Maestripieri, Steven W Gangestad
Decades of research in behavioral endocrinology has implicated the gonadal hormone testosterone in the regulation of mating effort, often expressed in primates in the form of aggressive and/or status-striving behavior. Based on the idea that neuroendocrine axes influence each other, recent work among humans has proposed that links between testosterone and indices of status-striving are rendered conditional by the effects of glucocorticoids. The Dual Hormone hypothesis is one particular instance of this argument, predicting that cortisol blocks the effects of testosterone on dominance, aggression, and risk-taking in humans...
January 24, 2019: Hormones and Behavior
Wendy A Koss, Karyn M Frick
Although 17β-estradiol (E2 ) is known to regulate hippocampal function, the specific contributions of hippocampally-synthesized E2 remain unclear. Infusion of the aromatase inhibitor letrozole into the dorsal hippocampus (DH) of ovariectomized mice disrupts object recognition and object placement memory consolidation, suggesting that DH-synthesized E2 is essential for memory. However, the role of DH-synthesized E2 in memory among male rodents is unknown. Here, we examined effects of aromatase inhibition on memory consolidation in male mice...
January 17, 2019: Hormones and Behavior
Jennifer Kott, Susanne Brummelte
Maternal depression and treatment with selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs), the most common form of pharmaceutical intervention, can both have an impact on infant development. As such, it is difficult for healthcare providers to recommend a course of treatment to expectant mothers suffering from depression, or to women on antidepressant medication prior to pregnancy. This review will discuss the existing research on the developmental impacts of maternal depression and its treatment with SSRIs, with a particular focus on contributing factors that complicate our attempt to disentangle the consequences of maternal depression and its treatment such as the timing or severity of the depression...
January 15, 2019: Hormones and Behavior
Megan D Gall, Mark A Bee, Alexander T Baugh
In seasonal breeders, there are behavioral, endocrine, and neural adaptations that promote the sexual receptivity of females and tune their sensory systems to detect and discriminate among advertising males and to successfully copulate. What happens immediately after this key life history event is unclear, but this transitional moment offers a window into the mechanisms that remodel sexual phenotypes. In this study of wild female Cope's gray treefrogs (Hyla chrysoscelis), we tested the hypothesis that oviposition results in a suite of coordinated changes in the sexual phenotype...
January 14, 2019: Hormones and Behavior
Marie-Pierre de Bournonville, Laura M Vandries, Gregory F Ball, Jacques Balthazart, Charlotte A Cornil
Aromatization within the medial preoptic nucleus (POM) is essential for the expression of male copulatory behavior in Japanese quail. However, several nuclei within the social behavior network (SBN) also express aromatase. Whether aromatase in these loci participates in the behavioral activation is not known. Castrated male Japanese quail were implanted with 2 subcutaneous Silastic capsules filled with crystalline testosterone and with bilateral stereotaxic implants filled with the aromatase inhibitor Vorozole targeting the POM, the bed nucleus of the stria terminalis (BST) or the ventromedial nucleus of the hypothalamus (VMN)...
December 31, 2018: Hormones and Behavior
Nicole A Thompson, James P Higham, Michael Heistermann, Erin Vogel, Marina Cords
Primates develop slowly relative to their body size, a pattern posited to result from ecological risk aversion. Little is known, however, about how energy balance contributes to allostatic load in juveniles. Using data collected over 8 consecutive months, we examined variation in energy balance (as measured by urinary C-peptide) and how energy balance, life history status, and social competition related to allostatic load (as measured by deviation from baseline fecal glucocorticoid metabolites, dfGCs) in 41 wild juvenile blue monkeys from 3 social groups...
December 28, 2018: Hormones and Behavior
Vahid Hajali, Monica L Andersen, Sajad Sahab Negah, Vahid Sheibani
Males and females can respond differentially to the same environmental stimuli and experimental conditions. Chronic sleep loss is a frequent and growing problem in many modern societies and has a broad variety of negative outcomes for health and well-being. While much has been done to explore the deleterious effects of sleep deprivation (SD) on cognition in both human and animal studies over the last few decades, very little attention has been paid to the part played by sex differences and gonadal steroids in respect of changes in cognitive functions caused by sleep loss...
December 28, 2018: Hormones and Behavior
Vincenzo Paolo Senese, Atiqah Azhari, Kazuyuki Shinohara, Hirokazu Doi, Paola Venuti, Marc H Bornstein, Gianluca Esposito
Adults' sensitive appraisal of and response to infant cry play a foundational role in child development. Employing a gene × environment (G × E) approach, this study investigated the interaction of genetic polymorphisms of the serotonin transporter gene (5-HTTLPR) and oxytocin receptor genes (OXTR; rs53576, rs2254298) with early parental care experiences in influencing adults' implicit associations to infant cry. Eighty nulliparous adults (40 females, 40 males) responded to the Parental Acceptance-Rejection Questionnaire (PARQ), a measure of early care experiences, and participated in a Single Category Implicit Association Task (SC-IAT) to measure implicit associations to infant cry...
December 27, 2018: Hormones and Behavior
Aboagyewaah Oppong-Damoah, Rokon Uz Zaman, Martin D'Souza, Kevin Sean Murnane
The blood-brain barrier (BBB) limits the therapeutic use of large molecules as it prevents them from passively entering the brain following conventional routes of administration. It also limits the capacity of researchers to study the role of large molecules in behavior, as it often necessitates intracerebroventricular administration. Oxytocin is a large-molecule neuropeptide with pro-social behavioral effects and therapeutic promise for social-deficit disorders. Although preclinical and clinical studies are using intranasal delivery of oxytocin to improve brain bioavailability, it remains of interest to further improve the brain penetrance and duration of action of oxytocin, even with intranasal administration...
December 26, 2018: Hormones and Behavior
Ashlyn Swift-Gallant
For nearly 60 years since the seminal paper from W.C Young and colleagues (Phoenix et al., 1959), the principles of sexual differentiation of the brain and behavior have maintained that female-typical sexual behaviors (e.g., lordosis) and sexual preferences (e.g., attraction to males) are the result of low androgen levels during development, whereas higher androgen levels promote male-typical sexual behaviors (e.g., mounting and thrusting) and preferences (e.g., attraction to females). However, recent reports suggest that the relationship between androgens and male-typical behaviors is not always linear - when androgen signaling is increased in male rodents, via exogenous androgen exposure or androgen receptor overexpression, males continue to exhibit male-typical sexual behaviors, but their sexual preferences are altered such that their interest in same-sex partners is increased...
December 20, 2018: Hormones and Behavior
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