Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Oxytocin and social contact reduce anxiety: Hormone may be less effective at relieving stress for isolated animals

Date:
November 15, 2010
Source:
Society for Neuroscience
Summary:
Oxytocin reduces anxiety in stressed animals, according to new research, but only if they recover in the presence of a friend.

Oxytocin reduces anxiety in stressed animals, according to new research, but only if they recover in the presence of a friend.

The study was presented at Neuroscience 2010, the annual meeting of the Society for Neuroscience, held in San Diego.

"Work in the last two decades has propelled oxytocin toward the top of a list of potentially effective stress- and anxiety-reducing agents, largely due to its positive associations with mental health," said Jason Yee, PhD, a postdoctoral fellow in the laboratory of Sue Carter, PhD, at the University of Illinois at Chicago.

To explore oxytocin's effectiveness in relieving stress, Yee and his colleagues treated voles with oxytocin and then placed them in a wet cage, a stressor that mimics a flooded burrow the voles might experience in the wild. Then the researchers allowed the voles to recover in a dry cage, either by themselves or with another vole.

Most of the voles tried to escape the dry cage -- an anxious behavior. However, the voles that received oxytocin and recovered with a companion showed less escape behaviors. These voles had high levels of oxytocin in their blood. In contrast, oxytocin was less effective at reducing anxious behaviors in voles that recovered by themselves. These voles had lower levels of oxytocin in their blood.

"When animals receive oxytocin and are given an opportunity to recuperate in the presence of a familiar partner, their bodies may release extra oxytocin, which in turn appears to facilitate a less anxious pattern of behavior," Yee said. The findings suggest that social contact is an important factor in oxytocin's ability to reduce anxiety.

Research was supported by the National Institute of Mental Health and the National Institute on Aging.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Society for Neuroscience. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Society for Neuroscience. "Oxytocin and social contact reduce anxiety: Hormone may be less effective at relieving stress for isolated animals." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 15 November 2010. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/11/101115160626.htm>.
Society for Neuroscience. (2010, November 15). Oxytocin and social contact reduce anxiety: Hormone may be less effective at relieving stress for isolated animals. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 25, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/11/101115160626.htm
Society for Neuroscience. "Oxytocin and social contact reduce anxiety: Hormone may be less effective at relieving stress for isolated animals." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/11/101115160626.htm (accessed July 25, 2014).

Share This




More Mind & Brain News

Friday, July 25, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Beatings and Addiction: Pakistan Drug 'clinic' Tortures Patients

Beatings and Addiction: Pakistan Drug 'clinic' Tortures Patients

AFP (July 24, 2014) A so-called drugs rehab 'clinic' is closed down in Pakistan after police find scores of ‘patients’ chained up alleging serial abuse. Duration 03:05 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
New Painkiller Designed To Discourage Abuse: Will It Work?

New Painkiller Designed To Discourage Abuse: Will It Work?

Newsy (July 24, 2014) The FDA approved Targiniq ER on Wednesday, a painkiller designed to keep users from abusing it. Like any new medication, however, it has doubters. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Can Watching TV Make You Feel Like A Failure?

Can Watching TV Make You Feel Like A Failure?

Newsy (July 24, 2014) A study by German researchers claims watching TV while you're stressed out can make you feel guilty and like a failure. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
China's Ageing Millions Look Forward to Bleak Future

China's Ageing Millions Look Forward to Bleak Future

AFP (July 24, 2014) China's elderly population is expanding so quickly that children struggle to look after them, pushing them to do something unexpected in Chinese society- move their parents into a nursing home. Duration: 02:07 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

    Health News

      Environment News

        Technology News



          Save/Print:
          Share:

          Free Subscriptions


          Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

          Get Social & Mobile


          Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

          Have Feedback?


          Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
          Mobile: iPhone Android Web
          Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
          Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
          Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins