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Sample records for synthase modulates oxytocin

  1. Oxytocin modulates hemodynamic responses to monetary incentives in humans.

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    Mickey, Brian J; Heffernan, Joseph; Heisel, Curtis; Peciña, Marta; Hsu, David T; Zubieta, Jon-Kar; Love, Tiffany M

    2016-12-01

    Oxytocin is a neuropeptide widely recognized for its role in regulating social and reproductive behavior. Increasing evidence from animal models suggests that oxytocin also modulates reward circuitry in non-social contexts, but evidence in humans is lacking. We examined the effects of oxytocin administration on reward circuit function in 18 healthy men as they performed a monetary incentive task. The blood oxygenation level-dependent (BOLD) signal was measured using functional magnetic resonance imaging in the context of a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled, crossover trial of intranasal oxytocin. We found that oxytocin increases the BOLD signal in the midbrain (substantia nigra and ventral tegmental area) during the late phase of the hemodynamic response to incentive stimuli. Oxytocin's effects on midbrain responses correlated positively with its effects on positive emotional state. We did not detect an effect of oxytocin on responses in the nucleus accumbens. Whole-brain analyses revealed that oxytocin attenuated medial prefrontal cortical deactivation specifically during anticipation of loss. Our findings demonstrate that intranasal administration of oxytocin modulates human midbrain and medial prefrontal function during motivated behavior. These findings suggest that endogenous oxytocin is a neurochemical mediator of reward behaviors in humans-even in a non-social context-and that the oxytocinergic system is a potential target of pharmacotherapy for psychiatric disorders that involve dysfunction of reward circuitry.

  2. Oxytocin modulates hemodynamic responses to monetary incentives in humans

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    Mickey, Brian J.; Heffernan, Joseph; Heisel, Curtis; Peciña, Marta; Hsu, David T.; Zubieta, Jon-Kar; Love, Tiffany M.

    2016-01-01

    Oxytocin is a neuropeptide widely recognized for its role in regulating social and reproductive behavior. Increasing evidence from animal models suggests that oxytocin also modulates reward circuitry in non-social contexts, but evidence in humans is lacking. Here we examined the effects of oxytocin administration on reward circuit function in 18 healthy men as they performed a monetary incentive task. The blood oxygenation level dependent (BOLD) signal was measured using functional magnetic resonance imaging in the context of a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled, crossover trial of intranasal oxytocin. We found that oxytocin increases the BOLD signal in the midbrain (substantia nigra and ventral tegmental area) during the late phase of the hemodynamic response to incentive stimuli. Oxytocin’s effects on midbrain responses correlated positively with its effects on positive emotional state. We did not detect an effect of oxytocin on responses in the nucleus accumbens. Whole-brain analyses revealed that oxytocin attenuated medial prefrontal cortical deactivation specifically during anticipation of loss. Our findings demonstrate that intranasal administration of oxytocin modulates human midbrain and medial prefrontal function during motivated behavior. These findings suggest that endogenous oxytocin is a neurochemical mediator of reward behaviors in humans – even in a non-social context – and that the oxytocinergic system is a potential target of pharmacotherapy for psychiatric disorders that involve dysfunction of reward circuitry. PMID:27614896

  3. Oxytocin Modulates Nociception as an Agonist of Pain-Sensing TRPV1

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    Yelena Nersesyan

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available Oxytocin is a hormone with various actions. Oxytocin-containing parvocellular neurons project to the brainstem and spinal cord. Oxytocin release from these neurons suppresses nociception of inflammatory pain, the molecular mechanism of which remains unclear. Here, we report that the noxious stimulus receptor TRPV1 is an ionotropic oxytocin receptor. Oxytocin elicits TRPV1 activity in native and heterologous expression systems, regardless of the presence of the classical oxytocin receptor. In TRPV1 knockout mice, DRG neurons exhibit reduced oxytocin sensitivity relative to controls, and oxytocin injections significantly attenuate capsaicin-induced nociception in in vivo experiments. Furthermore, oxytocin potentiates TRPV1 in planar lipid bilayers, supporting a direct agonistic action. Molecular modeling and simulation experiments provide insight into oxytocin-TRPV1 interactions, which resemble DkTx. Together, our findings suggest the existence of endogenous regulatory pathways that modulate nociception via direct action of oxytocin on TRPV1, implying its analgesic effect via channel desensitization.

  4. Intranasal oxytocin modulates neural functional connectivity during human social interaction.

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    Rilling, James K; Chen, Xiangchuan; Chen, Xu; Haroon, Ebrahim

    2018-02-10

    Oxytocin (OT) modulates social behavior in primates and many other vertebrate species. Studies in non-primate animals have demonstrated that, in addition to influencing activity within individual brain areas, OT influences functional connectivity across networks of areas involved in social behavior. Previously, we used fMRI to image brain function in human subjects during a dyadic social interaction task following administration of either intranasal oxytocin (INOT) or placebo, and analyzed the data with a standard general linear model. Here, we conduct an extensive re-analysis of these data to explore how OT modulates functional connectivity across a neural network that animal studies implicate in social behavior. OT induced widespread increases in functional connectivity in response to positive social interactions among men and widespread decreases in functional connectivity in response to negative social interactions among women. Nucleus basalis of Meynert, an important regulator of selective attention and motivation with a particularly high density of OT receptors, had the largest number of OT-modulated connections. Regions known to receive mesolimbic dopamine projections such as the nucleus accumbens and lateral septum were also hubs for OT effects on functional connectivity. Our results suggest that the neural mechanism by which OT influences primate social cognition may include changes in patterns of activity across neural networks that regulate social behavior in other animals. © 2018 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  5. Oxytocin modulates GABAAR subunits to confer neuroprotection in stroke in vitro.

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    Kaneko, Yuji; Pappas, Colleen; Tajiri, Naoki; Borlongan, Cesar V

    2016-10-21

    Oxytocin protects against ischemia-induced inflammation and oxidative stress, and is associated with GABA (γ-aminobutyric acid, an inhibitory neurotransmitter) signaling transduction in neurons. However, the molecular mechanism by which oxytocin affords neuroprotection, especially the interaction between oxytocin receptor and GABA A receptor (GABA A R), remains to be elucidated. Primary rat neural cells were exposed to oxytocin before induction of experimental acute stroke model via oxygen-glucose deprivation-reperfusion (OGD/R) injury. Pretreatment with oxytocin increased cell viability, decreased the cell damage against oxidative stress, and prevented the release of high mobility group box1 during OGD/R. However, introduction of oxytocin during OGD/R did not induce neuroprotection. Although oxytocin did not affect the glutathione-related cellular metabolism before OGD, oxytocin modulated the expression levels of GABA A R subunits, which function to remove excessive neuronal excitability via chloride ion influx. Oxytocin-pretreated cells significantly increased the chloride ion influx in response to GABA and THIP (δ-GABA A R specific agonist). This study provides evidence that oxytocin regulated GABA A R subunits in affording neuroprotection against OGD/R injury.

  6. Oxytocin modulates human communication by enhancing cognitive exploration.

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    de Boer, Miriam; Kokal, Idil; Blokpoel, Mark; Liu, Rui; Stolk, Arjen; Roelofs, Karin; van Rooij, Iris; Toni, Ivan

    2017-12-01

    Oxytocin is a neuropeptide known to influence how humans share material resources. Here we explore whether oxytocin influences how we share knowledge. We focus on two distinguishing features of human communication, namely the ability to select communicative signals that disambiguate the many-to-many mappings that exist between a signal's form and meaning, and adjustments of those signals to the presumed cognitive characteristics of the addressee ("audience design"). Fifty-five males participated in a randomized, double-blind, placebo controlled experiment involving the intranasal administration of oxytocin. The participants produced novel non-verbal communicative signals towards two different addressees, an adult or a child, in an experimentally-controlled live interactive setting. We found that oxytocin administration drives participants to generate signals of higher referential quality, i.e. signals that disambiguate more communicative problems; and to rapidly adjust those communicative signals to what the addressee understands. The combined effects of oxytocin on referential quality and audience design fit with the notion that oxytocin administration leads participants to explore more pervasively behaviors that can convey their intention, and diverse models of the addressees. These findings suggest that, besides affecting prosocial drive and salience of social cues, oxytocin influences how we share knowledge by promoting cognitive exploration. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  7. Oxytocin differentially modulates pavlovian cue and context fear acquisition.

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    Cavalli, Juliana; Ruttorf, Michaela; Pahi, Mario Rosero; Zidda, Francesca; Flor, Herta; Nees, Frauke

    2017-06-01

    Fear acquisition and extinction have been demonstrated as core mechanisms for the development and maintenance of mental disorders, with different contributions of processing cues vs contexts. The hypothalamic peptide oxytocin (OXT) may have a prominent role in this context, as it has been shown to affect fear learning. However, investigations have focused on cue conditioning, and fear extinction. Its differential role for cue and context fear acquisition is still not known. In a randomized, double-blind, placebo (PLC)-controlled design, we administered an intranasal dose of OXT or PLC before the acquisition of cue and context fear conditioning in healthy individuals (n = 52), and assessed brain responses, skin conductance responses and self-reports (valence/arousal/contingency). OXT compared with PLC significantly induced decreased responses in the nucleus accumbens during early cue and context acquisition, and decreased responses of the anterior cingulate cortex and insula during early as well as increased hippocampal response during late context, but not cue acquisition. The OXT group additionally showed significantly higher arousal in late cue and context acquisition. OXT modulates various aspects of cue and context conditioning, which is relevant from a mechanism-based perspective and might have implications for the treatment of fear and anxiety. © The Author (2017). Published by Oxford University Press.

  8. Oxytocin and vasopressin modulation of the neural correlates of motivation and emotion: results from functional MRI studies in awake rats.

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    Febo, Marcelo; Ferris, Craig F

    2014-09-11

    Oxytocin and vasopressin modulate a range of species typical behavioral functions that include social recognition, maternal-infant attachment, and modulation of memory, offensive aggression, defensive fear reactions, and reward seeking. We have employed novel functional magnetic resonance mapping techniques in awake rats to explore the roles of these neuropeptides in the maternal and non-maternal brain. Results from the functional neuroimaging studies that are summarized here have directly and indirectly confirmed and supported previous findings. Oxytocin is released within the lactating rat brain during suckling stimulation and activates specific subcortical networks in the maternal brain. Both vasopressin and oxytocin modulate brain regions involved unconditioned fear, processing of social stimuli and the expression of agonistic behaviors. Across studies there are relatively consistent brain networks associated with internal motivational drives and emotional states that are modulated by oxytocin and vasopressin. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled Oxytocin and Social Behav. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  9. Oxytocin modulates third-party sanctioning of selfish and generous behavior within and between groups

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    Daughters, K.; Manstead, A.S.R.; Ten Velden, F.S.; De Dreu, C.K.W.

    Human groups function because members trust each other and reciprocate cooperative contributions, and reward others’ cooperation and punish their non-cooperation. Here we examined the possibility that such third-party punishment and reward of others’ trust and reciprocation is modulated by oxytocin,

  10. A common oxytocin receptor gene (OXTR) polymorphism modulates intranasal oxytocin effects on the neural response to social cooperation in humans.

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    Feng, C; Lori, A; Waldman, I D; Binder, E B; Haroon, E; Rilling, J K

    2015-09-01

    Intranasal oxytocin (OT) can modulate social-emotional functioning and related brain activity in humans. Consequently, OT has been discussed as a potential treatment for psychiatric disorders involving social behavioral deficits. However, OT effects are often heterogeneous across individuals. Here we explore individual differences in OT effects on the neural response to social cooperation as a function of the rs53576 polymorphism of the oxytocin receptor gene (OXTR). Previously, we conducted a double-blind, placebo-controlled study in which healthy men and women were randomized to treatment with intranasal OT or placebo. Afterwards, they were imaged with functional magnetic resonance imaging while playing an iterated Prisoner's Dilemma Game with same-sex partners. Within the left ventral caudate nucleus, intranasal OT treatment increased activation to reciprocated cooperation in men, but tended to decrease activation in women. Here, we show that these sex differences in OT effects are specific to individuals with the rs53576 GG genotype, and are not found for other genotypes (rs53576 AA/AG). Thus, OT may increase the reward or salience of positive social interactions for male GG homozygotes, while decreasing those processes for female GG homozygotes. These results suggest that rs53576 genotype is an important variable to consider in future investigations of the clinical efficacy of intranasal OT treatment. © 2015 John Wiley & Sons Ltd and International Behavioural and Neural Genetics Society.

  11. Oxytocin modulates third-party sanctioning of selfish and generous behavior within and between groups.

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    Daughters, Katie; Manstead, Antony S R; Ten Velden, Femke S; De Dreu, Carsten K W

    2017-03-01

    Human groups function because members trust each other and reciprocate cooperative contributions, and reward others' cooperation and punish their non-cooperation. Here we examined the possibility that such third-party punishment and reward of others' trust and reciprocation is modulated by oxytocin, a neuropeptide generally involved in social bonding and in-group (but not out-group) serving behavior. Healthy males and females (N=100) self-administered a placebo or 24 IU of oxytocin in a randomized, double-blind, between-subjects design. Participants were asked to indicate (incentivized, costly) their level of reward or punishment for in-group (outgroup) investors donating generously or fairly to in-group (outgroup) trustees, who back-transferred generously, fairly or selfishly. Punishment (reward) was higher for selfish (generous) investments and back-transfers when (i) investors were in-group rather than outgroup, and (ii) trustees were in-group rather than outgroup, especially when (iii) participants received oxytocin rather than placebo. It follows, first, that oxytocin leads individuals to ignore out-groups as long as out-group behavior is not relevant to the in-group and, second, that oxytocin contributes to creating and enforcing in-group norms of cooperation and trust. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  12. Oxytocin modulates female sociosexual behavior through a specific class of prefrontal cortical interneurons

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    Nakajima, Miho; Görlich, Andreas; Heintz, Nathaniel

    2014-01-01

    SUMMARY Human imaging studies have revealed that intranasal administration of the “prosocial” hormone oxytocin (OT) activates the frontal cortex, and that this action of OT correlates with enhanced brain function in autism. Here we report the discovery of a population of somatostatin (Sst) positive, regular spiking interneurons that express the oxytocin receptor (OxtrINs). Silencing of OxtrINs in the medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC) of female mice resulted in loss of social interest in male mice specifically during the sexually receptive phase of the estrous cycle. This sociosexual deficit was also present in mice in which the Oxtr gene was conditionally deleted from the mPFC, and in control mice infused with an Oxtr antagonist. Our data demonstrate a gender, cell type and state specific role for OT/Oxtr signaling in the mPFC, and identify a latent cortical circuit element that may modulate other complex social behaviors in response to OT. PMID:25303526

  13. MDMA ('Ecstasy'), oxytocin and vasopressin modulate social preference in rats: A role for handling and oxytocin receptors.

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    Ramos, Linnet; Hicks, Callum; Caminer, Alex; Couto, Kalliu; Narlawar, Rajeshwar; Kassiou, Michael; McGregor, Iain S

    In laboratory rats, peripheral administration of the neuropeptides oxytocin (OT) and vasopressin (AVP) induces similar prosocial effects (i.e. increased adjacent lying) to the party drug 3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA), which are sensitive to vasopressin V 1A receptor (V 1A R) antagonism. Here, we employed a social preference paradigm to further compare the prosocial effects of OT, AVP and MDMA. We also investigated the possible involvement of the V 1A R and oxytocin receptor (OTR) in rodent social preference. The social preference paradigm measures investigation times towards an empty wire cage (presented for 4min) followed by an identical cage containing a novel rat (also presented for 4min). Social preference is defined as greater investigation time towards the inhabited cage than the empty cage. Results indicated that well-handled rats exhibited no social preference at baseline, while intraperitoneally injected MDMA (5mg/kg), OT (0.5mg/kg) and AVP (0.005mg/kg) increased social preference. However, this effect was primarily due to reduced investigation of the empty cage. In contrast, rats that received minimal prior handling displayed a social preference at baseline, while MDMA (5mg/kg), OT (0.5mg/kg) and AVP (0.005mg/kg) reduced investigation times towards both the empty and inhabited cages. Lower doses of MDMA, OT and AVP were ineffective. The OTR antagonist Compound 25 (C25, 5mg/kg), but not the V 1A R antagonist SR49059 (1mg/kg), reduced the baseline social preference seen in minimally-handled rats and prevented the social preference induced by OT and AVP (but not MDMA) in well-handled rats. Overall, these results further confirm prosocial actions of MDMA, OT and AVP, which are dependent on handling history. These findings also indicate that social preference is sensitive to OTR rather than V 1A R modulation. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  14. Oxytocin modulates social distance between males and females.

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    Scheele, Dirk; Striepens, Nadine; Güntürkün, Onur; Deutschländer, Sandra; Maier, Wolfgang; Kendrick, Keith M; Hurlemann, René

    2012-11-14

    In humans, interpersonal romantic attraction and the subsequent development of monogamous pair-bonds is substantially predicted by influential impressions formed during first encounters. The prosocial neuropeptide oxytocin (OXT) has been identified as a key facilitator of both interpersonal attraction and the formation of parental attachment. However, whether OXT contributes to the maintenance of monogamous bonds after they have been formed is unclear. In this randomized placebo-controlled trial, we provide the first behavioral evidence that the intranasal administration of OXT stimulates men in a monogamous relationship, but not single ones, to keep a much greater distance (~10-15 cm) between themselves and an attractive woman during a first encounter. This avoidance of close personal proximity occurred in the physical presence of female but not male experimenters and was independent of gaze direction and whether the female experimenter or the subject was moving. We further confirmed this unexpected finding using a photograph-based approach/avoidance task that showed again that OXT only stimulated men in a monogamous relationship to approach pictures of attractive women more slowly. Importantly, these changes cannot be attributed to OXT altering the attitude of monogamous men toward attractive women or their judgments of and arousal by pictures of them. Together, our results suggest that where OXT release is stimulated during a monogamous relationship, it may additionally promote its maintenance by making men avoid signaling romantic interest to other women through close-approach behavior during social encounters. In this way, OXT may help to promote fidelity within monogamous human relationships.

  15. Modulation of hyaluronan synthase activity in cellular membrane fractions.

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    Vigetti, Davide; Genasetti, Anna; Karousou, Evgenia; Viola, Manuela; Clerici, Moira; Bartolini, Barbara; Moretto, Paola; De Luca, Giancarlo; Hascall, Vincent C; Passi, Alberto

    2009-10-30

    Hyaluronan (HA), the only non-sulfated glycosaminoglycan, is involved in morphogenesis, wound healing, inflammation, angiogenesis, and cancer. In mammals, HA is synthesized by three homologous HA synthases, HAS1, HAS2, and HAS3, that polymerize the HA chain using UDP-glucuronic acid and UDP-N-acetylglucosamine as precursors. Since the amount of HA is critical in several pathophysiological conditions, we developed a non-radioactive assay for measuring the activity of HA synthases (HASs) in eukaryotic cells and addressed the question of HAS activity during intracellular protein trafficking. We prepared three cellular fractions: plasma membrane, cytosol (containing membrane proteins mainly from the endoplasmic reticulum and Golgi), and nuclei. After incubation with UDP-sugar precursors, newly synthesized HA was quantified by polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis of fluorophore-labeled saccharides and high performance liquid chromatography. This new method measured HAS activity not only in the plasma membrane fraction but also in the cytosolic membranes. This new technique was used to evaluate the effects of 4-methylumbeliferone, phorbol 12-myristate 13-acetate, interleukin 1beta, platelet-derived growth factor BB, and tunicamycin on HAS activities. We found that HAS activity can be modulated by post-translational modification, such as phosphorylation and N-glycosylation. Interestingly, we detected a significant increase in HAS activity in the cytosolic membrane fraction after tunicamycin treatment. Since this compound is known to induce HA cable structures, this result links HAS activity alteration with the capability of the cell to promote HA cable formation.

  16. Differential modulation of nitric oxide synthases in aging: therapeutic opportunities

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    Stêfany Bruno De Assis Cau

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available Vascular aging is the term that describes the structural and functional disturbances of the vasculature with advancing aging. The molecular mechanisms of aging-associated endothelial dysfunction are complex, but reduced nitric oxide (NO bioavailability and altered vascular expression and activity of NO synthase (NOS enzymes have been implicated as major players. Impaired vascular relaxation in aging has been attributed to reduced endothelial NOS (eNOS-derived NO, while increased inducible NOS (iNOS expression seems to account for nitrosative stress and disrupted vascular homeostasis. Although eNOS is considered the main source of NO in the vascular endothelium, neuronal NOS (nNOS also contributes to endothelial cells-derived NO, a mechanism that is reduced in aging. Pharmacological modulation of NO generation and expression/activity of NOS isoforms may represent a therapeutic alternative to prevent the progression of cardiovascular diseases. Accordingly, this review will focus on drugs that modulate NO bioavailability, such as nitrite anions and NO-releasing non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, hormones (dehydroepiandrosterone and estrogen, statins, resveratrol and folic acid, since they may be useful to treat/to prevent aging-associated vascular dysfunction. The impact of these therapies on life quality in elderly and longevity will be discussed.

  17. Intranasal Oxytocin Selectively Modulates Social Perception, Craving, and Approach Behavior in Subjects With Alcohol Use Disorder.

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    Mitchell, Jennifer M; Arcuni, Peter A; Weinstein, Dawn; Woolley, Josh D

    2016-01-01

    A pharmacotherapy that both improves social abilities and promotes abstinence may be particularly helpful for the treatment of alcohol use disorder. Recent clinical and preclinical evidence suggests that oxytocin has prosocial and antiaddiction effects. We performed a pilot, laboratory-based, preclinical trial of oxytocin in subjects with alcohol abuse (as per Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, 4 Edition criteria) to evaluate therapeutic potential and assess tolerability. Social perceptual ability, cue-induced craving, and approach bias for alcohol and appetitive imagery were quantified after intranasal oxytocin and placebo administration to 32 nontreatment-seeking individuals with alcohol abuse in a double-blind, crossover study. Because attachment style can moderate the effects of oxytocin, we also explored whether attachment style moderated oxytocin's effects on our behavioral measures. Oxytocin significantly improved recognition of easier items on a social perception task, but had no significant group-level effect on cue-induced craving. However, oxytocin effects on craving were moderated by attachment anxiety, with oxytocin reducing craving in more anxiously attached individuals and increasing craving in less anxiously attached individuals. Subjects did not display an approach bias to alcohol images on the placebo day, preventing meaningful analysis of this measure. Subjects did display an approach bias to appetitive images on the placebo day, which was significantly reduced by oxytocin administration. No adverse reactions were observed. Intranasal oxytocin has potential to improve social perception, reduce cue-induced alcohol cravings, and reduce appetitive approach bias in subjects with alcohol abuse, and can be safely tolerated in this population. The effects of oxytocin are complex, however, and require further investigation.

  18. Oxytocin efficacy is modulated by dosage and oxytocin receptor genotype in young adults with high-functioning autism: a 24-week randomized clinical trial.

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    Kosaka, H; Okamoto, Y; Munesue, T; Yamasue, H; Inohara, K; Fujioka, T; Anme, T; Orisaka, M; Ishitobi, M; Jung, M; Fujisawa, T X; Tanaka, S; Arai, S; Asano, M; Saito, D N; Sadato, N; Tomoda, A; Omori, M; Sato, M; Okazawa, H; Higashida, H; Wada, Y

    2016-08-23

    Recent studies have suggested that long-term oxytocin administration can alleviate the symptoms of autism spectrum disorder (ASD); however, factors influencing its efficacy are still unclear. We conducted a single-center phase 2, pilot, randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled, parallel-group, clinical trial in young adults with high-functioning ASD, to determine whether oxytocin dosage and genetic background of the oxytocin receptor affects oxytocin efficacy. This trial consisted of double-blind (12 weeks), open-label (12 weeks) and follow-up phases (8 weeks). To examine dose dependency, 60 participants were randomly assigned to high-dose (32 IU per day) or low-dose intranasal oxytocin (16 IU per day), or placebo groups during the double-blind phase. Next, we measured single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in the oxytocin receptor gene (OXTR). In the intention-to-treat population, no outcomes were improved after oxytocin administration. However, in male participants, Clinical Global Impression-Improvement (CGI-I) scores in the high-dose group, but not the low-dose group, were significantly higher than in the placebo group. Furthermore, we examined whether oxytocin efficacy, reflected in the CGI-I scores, is influenced by estimated daily dosage and OXTR polymorphisms in male participants. We found that >21 IU per day oxytocin was more effective than ⩽21 IU per day, and that a SNP in OXTR (rs6791619) predicted CGI-I scores for ⩽21 IU per day oxytocin treatment. No severe adverse events occurred. These results suggest that efficacy of long-term oxytocin administration in young men with high-functioning ASD depends on the oxytocin dosage and genetic background of the oxytocin receptor, which contributes to the effectiveness of oxytocin treatment of ASD.

  19. Oxytocin as a Modulator of Synaptic Plasticity: Implications for Neurodevelopmental Disorders

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    Keerthi Thirtamara Rajamani

    2018-06-01

    Full Text Available The neuropeptide oxytocin (OXT is a crucial mediator of parturition and milk ejection and a major modulator of various social behaviors, including social recognition, aggression and parenting. In the past decade, there has been significant excitement around the possible use of OXT to treat behavioral deficits in neurodevelopmental disorders, including autism spectrum disorder (ASD. Yet, despite the fast move to clinical trials with OXT, little attention has been paid to the possibility that the OXT system in the brain is perturbed in these disorders and to what extent such perturbations may contribute to social behavior deficits. Large-scale whole-exome sequencing studies in subjects with ASD, along with biochemical and electrophysiological studies in animal models of the disorder, indicate several risk genes that play an essential role in brain synapses, suggesting that deficits in synaptic activity and plasticity underlie the pathophysiology in a considerable portion of these cases. OXT has been repeatedly shown, both in vitro and in vivo, to modify synaptic properties and plasticity and to modulate neural activity in circuits that regulate social behavior. Together, these findings led us to hypothesize that failure of the OXT system during early development, as a direct or indirect consequence of genetic mutations, may impact social behavior by altering synaptic activity and plasticity. In this article, we review the evidence that support our hypothesis.

  20. Modulation of hyaluronan synthase activity in cellular membrane fractions

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    Vigetti, Davide; Genasetti, A; Karousou, Evgenia; Viola, Manuela; Clerici, M; Bartolini, B; Moretto, Paola; DE LUCA, Giancarlo; Hascall, Vc; Passi, Alberto

    2009-01-01

    Hyaluronan (HA), the only non-sulfated glycosaminoglycan, is involved in morphogenesis, wound healing, inflammation, angiogenesis, and cancer. In mammals, HA is synthesized by three homologous HA synthases, HAS1, HAS2, and HAS3, that polymerize the HA chain using UDP-glucuronic acid and UDP-N-acetylglucosamine as precursors. Since the amount of HA is critical in several pathophysiological conditions, we developed a non-radioactive assay for measuring the activity of HA synthases (HASs) in euk...

  1. Modulation of interpersonal trust in borderline personality disorder by intranasal oxytocin and childhood trauma.

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    Ebert, Andreas; Kolb, Meike; Heller, Jörg; Edel, Marc-Andreas; Roser, Patrik; Brüne, Martin

    2013-01-01

    Borderline personality disorder (BPD) is characterized by interpersonal difficulties, whereby patients are negatively biased concerning the evaluation of others' trustworthiness. Here, we examined the effect of oxytocin on interpersonal behavior of BPD patients in a trust game, emphasizing the assessment of facial attractiveness of the patients' counterparts in the game, and patients' history of childhood trauma. Thirteen BPD patients and thirteen healthy controls played a trust game after receiving oxytocin or placebo in a randomized, double-blind crossover design. Childhood trauma was evaluated using the Childhood Trauma Questionnaire (CTQ). Patients transferred less money in the oxytocin condition compared to placebo. While healthy controls transferred more money units (MUs) to attractive counterparts than to unattractive ones only after the administration of oxytocin, BPD patients showed this pattern in both conditions. Emotional neglect during childhood negatively correlated with the amount of MUs transferred by patients under oxytocin, but not placebo. Oxytocin had a trust-lowering effect in BPD, which was correlated with patients' history of childhood trauma. Patients' evaluation of interpersonal trust seems to depend more on attractiveness features of their counterparts than in controls, a finding that may have important implications for further research on the usefulness of "prosocial" peptides as an adjunct to psychotherapeutic interventions.

  2. Oxytocin Modulates Meta-Mood as a Function of Age and Sex

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    Natalie eEbner

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available Attending to and understanding one’s own feelings are components of meta-mood and constitute important socio-affective skills across the entire lifespan. Growing evidence suggests a neuromodulatory role of the neuropeptide oxytocin on various socio-affective processes. Going beyond previous work that almost exclusively examined young men and perceptions of emotions in others, the current study investigated effects of intranasal oxytocin on meta-mood in young and older men and women. In a double-blind between-group design, participants were randomly assigned to self-administer either intranasal oxytocin or a placebo before responding to items from the Trait Meta-Mood Scale about attention to feelings and clarity of feelings. In contrast to older women, oxytocin relative to placebo increased attention to feelings in older men. Oxytocin relative to placebo enhanced meta-mood in young female participants but reduced it in older female participants. This pattern of findings supports an age- and sex-differential modulatory function of the neuropeptide oxytocin on meta-mood, possibly associated with neurobiological differences with age and sex.

  3. Action of exogenous oxytocin on stress modulation in crossbred Red Angus cows

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    Janne Paula Neres de Barros

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available Cattle (Bos taurus and Bos indicus are organised on the basis of leadership and dominance in such a manner that a disturbance by an external stressor causes negative effects on their health, productivity, well-being, and behaviour. One of these effects is the excessive release of glucocorticoids, which results in increased alertness. We evaluated the action of exogenous oxytocin (OT on serum cortisol levels in crossbred Red Angus heifers. Twelve Red Angus crossbred heifers were moved daily from the pasture to the corral in weeks 1 and 2 for adaptation to human contact and handling in the cattle crush. In weeks 3 and 4, they were divided into two groups of six (T1 and T2. The T1 group was administered 20 IU (2 mL of OT via intramuscular injection and the T2 group was administered 2 mL of saline solution 0.85% (SS. In weeks 5 and 6, they were only contained in the cattle crush for evaluation. On days 01, 07, 14, 21, 28, 35, and 42, blood samples were collected by jugular venepuncture in vacuum tubes without anticoagulants. Then, serum cortisol levels were measured using a radioimmunoassay. In the period of adaptation, during weeks 1 and 2, serum cortisol levels decreased in both the groups, with higher levels in the SS group; the same result was obtained in weeks 5 and 6. During treatment, however, there was a significant difference between the two groups in week 4, with a reduction in cortisol levels in the OT group. This result suggests a modulator effect of OT on neuroendocrine response to stress.

  4. Modulating the Oxytocin System During the Perinatal Period: A New Strategy for Neuroprotection of the Immature Brain?

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    Manuela Zinni

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available Oxytocin is a neurohypophysal hormone known for its activity during labor and its role in lactation. However, the function of oxytocin (OTX goes far beyond the peripheral regulation of reproduction, and the central effects of OTX have been extensively investigated, since it has been recognized to influence the learning and memory processes. OTX has also prominent effects on social behavior, anxiety, and autism. Interaction between glucocorticoids, OTX, and maternal behavior may have long-term effects on the developmental program of the developing brain subjected to adverse events during pre and perinatal periods. OTX treatment in humans improves many aspects of social cognition and behavior. Its effects on the hypothalamic–pituitary–adrenal axis and inflammation appear to be of interest in neonates because these properties may confer benefits when the perinatal brain has been subjected to injury. Indeed, early life inflammation and abnormal adrenal response to stress have been associated with an abnormal white matter development. Recent investigations demonstrated that OTX is involved in the modulation of microglial reactivity in the developing brain. This review recapitulates state-of-the art data supporting the hypothesis that the OTX system could be considered as an innovative candidate for neuroprotection, especially in the immature brain.

  5. Pharmacological modulation of human platelet leukotriene C4-synthase.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sala, A; Folco, G; Henson, P M; Murphy, R C

    1997-03-21

    The aim of this study was to test if human platelet leukotriene C4-synthase (LTC4-S) is pharmacologically different from cloned and expressed LTC4-S and, in light of the significant homologies between 5-lipoxygenase activating protein (FLAP) and LTC4-S, if different potencies of leukotriene synthesis inhibitors acting through binding with FLAP (FLAP inhibitors) reflect in different potencies as LTC4-S inhibitors. Leukotriene C4 (LTC4) synthesis by washed human platelets supplemented with synthetic leukotriene A4 (LTA4) was studied in the absence and presence of two different, structurally unrelated FLAP inhibitors (MK-886 and BAY-X1005) as well as a direct 5-lipoxygenase inhibitor (zileuton). LTC4 production was analyzed by RP-HPLC coupled to diode array detection. We report that human platelet LTC4-S was inhibited by MK-886 and BAY-X1005 (IC50 of 4.7 microM and 91.2 microM, respectively), but not by zileuton (inactive up to 300 microM); all 3 compounds were able to inhibit 5-lipoxygenase metabolite biosynthesis in intact human polymorphonuclear leukocytes (IC50 of 0.044 microM, 0.85 microM, and 1.5 microM, respectively). Platelet LTC4-S does not appear pharmacologically different from expression cloned LTC4-S. LTC4-S inhibition by FLAP inhibitors is in agreement with the significant homology reported for expression-cloned LTC4-S with FLAP, Furthermore, functional homology of the binding sites for inhibitors on LTC4-S and FLAP is suggested by the conservation of the relative potencies of MK-886 and BAY-X1005 vs FLAP-dependent 5-lipoxygenase activity and LTC4-S inhibition: MK-886 was 19.3-fold more potent than BAY-X1005 as FLAP inhibitor and 19.6-fold more potent than BAY-X1005 as LTC4-S inhibitor.

  6. Intranasal administration of oxytocin modulates behavioral and amygdala responses to infant crying in females with insecure attachment representations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Riem, Madelon M E; Bakermans-Kranenburg, Marian J; van IJzendoorn, Marinus H

    2016-01-01

    The current study examined the effects of oxytocin administration on the response to infant crying in individuals with secure or insecure attachment representations as assessed with the Adult Attachment Interview. We measured feelings of irritation and the use of excessive force as indicated by grip strength using a handgrip dynamometer during exposure to infant crying in 42 women without children who were administered intranasal oxytocin or a placebo. In addition, amygdala responses to infant crying and control sounds were measured with functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI). The effects of oxytocin on reactivity to crying were moderated by attachment security. Oxytocin decreased the use of excessive handgrip force and amygdala reactivity in response to crying in individuals with insecure attachment representations. Our findings indicate that insecure individuals, who show emotional, behavioral, and neural hyperreactivity to crying, benefit the most from intranasal oxytocin.

  7. Caveolin versus calmodulin. Counterbalancing allosteric modulators of endothelial nitric oxide synthase.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Michel, J B; Feron, O; Sase, K; Prabhakar, P; Michel, T

    1997-10-10

    Nitric oxide is synthesized in diverse mammalian tissues by a family of calmodulin-dependent nitric oxide synthases. The endothelial isoform of nitric oxide synthase (eNOS) is targeted to the specialized signal-transducing membrane domains termed plasmalemmal caveolae. Caveolin, the principal structural protein in caveolae, interacts with eNOS and leads to enzyme inhibition in a reversible process modulated by Ca2+-calmodulin (Michel, J. B., Feron, O., Sacks, D., and Michel, T. (1997) J. Biol. Chem. 272, 15583-15586). Caveolin also interacts with other structurally distinct signaling proteins via a specific region identified within the caveolin sequence (amino acids 82-101) that appears to subserve the role of a "scaffolding domain." We now report that the co-immunoprecipitation of eNOS with caveolin is completely and specifically blocked by an oligopeptide corresponding to the caveolin scaffolding domain. Peptides corresponding to this domain markedly inhibit nitric oxide synthase activity in endothelial membranes and interact directly with the enzyme to inhibit activity of purified recombinant eNOS expressed in Escherichia coli. The inhibition of purified eNOS by the caveolin scaffolding domain peptide is competitive and completely reversed by Ca2+-calmodulin. These studies establish that caveolin, via its scaffolding domain, directly forms an inhibitory complex with eNOS and suggest that caveolin inhibits eNOS by abrogating the enzyme's activation by calmodulin.

  8. Oxytocin and the neural mechanisms regulating social cognition and affiliative behavior.

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    Ross, Heather E; Young, Larry J

    2009-10-01

    Oxytocin is produced in the hypothalamus and released into the circulation through the neurohypophyseal system. Peripherally released oxytocin facilitates parturition and milk ejection during nursing. Centrally released oxytocin coordinates the onset of maternal nurturing behavior at parturition and plays a role in mother-infant bonding. More recent studies have revealed a more general role for oxytocin in modulating affiliative behavior in both sexes. Oxytocin regulates alloparental care and pair bonding in female monogamous prairie voles. Social recognition in male and female mice is also modulated by oxytocin. In humans, oxytocin increases gaze to the eye region of human faces and enhances interpersonal trust and the ability to infer the emotions of others from facial cues. While the neurohypopheseal oxytocin system has been well characterized, less is known regarding the nature of oxytocin release within the brain. Here we review the role of oxytocin in the regulation of prosocial interactions, and discuss the neuroanatomy of the central oxytocin system.

  9. Enhancement of fracture healing in the rat, modulated by compounds that stimulate inducible nitric oxide synthase

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rajfer, R. A.; Kilic, A.; Neviaser, A. S.; Schulte, L. M.; Hlaing, S. M.; Landeros, J.; Ferrini, M. G.; Ebramzadeh, E.

    2017-01-01

    Objectives We investigated the effects on fracture healing of two up-regulators of inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS) in a rat model of an open femoral osteotomy: tadalafil, a phosphodiesterase inhibitor, and the recently reported nutraceutical, COMB-4 (consisting of L-citrulline, Paullinia cupana, ginger and muira puama), given orally for either 14 or 42 days. Materials and Methods Unilateral femoral osteotomies were created in 58 male rats and fixed with an intramedullary compression nail. Rats were treated daily either with vehicle, tadalafil or COMB-4. Biomechanical testing of the healed fracture was performed on day 42. The volume, mineral content and bone density of the callus were measured by quantitative CT on days 14 and 42. Expression of iNOS was measured by immunohistochemistry. Results When compared with the control group, the COMB-4 group exhibited 46% higher maximum strength (t-test, p = 0.029) and 92% higher stiffness (t-test, p = 0.023), but no significant changes were observed in the tadalafil group. At days 14 and 42, there was no significant difference between the three groups with respect to callus volume, mineral content and bone density. Expression of iNOS at day 14 was significantly higher in the COMB-4 group which, as expected, had returned to baseline levels at day 42. Conclusion This study demonstrates an enhancement in fracture healing by an oral natural product known to augment iNOS expression. Cite this article: R. A. Rajfer, A. Kilic, A. S. Neviaser, L. M. Schulte, S. M. Hlaing, J. Landeros, M. G. Ferrini, E. Ebramzadeh, S-H. Park. Enhancement of fracture healing in the rat, modulated by compounds that stimulate inducible nitric oxide synthase: Acceleration of fracture healing via inducible nitric oxide synthase. Bone Joint Res 2017:6:–97. DOI: 10.1302/2046-3758.62.BJR-2016-0164.R2. PMID:28188129

  10. Sex-specific modulation of juvenile social play behavior by vasopressin and oxytocin depends on social context

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bredewold, Remco; Smith, Caroline J. W.; Dumais, Kelly M.; Veenema, Alexa H.

    2014-01-01

    We recently demonstrated that vasopressin (AVP) in the lateral septum modulates social play behavior differently in male and female juvenile rats. However, the extent to which different social contexts (i.e., exposure to an unfamiliar play partner in different environments) affect the regulation of social play remains largely unknown. Given that AVP and the closely related neuropeptide oxytocin (OXT) modulate social behavior as well as anxiety-like behavior, we hypothesized that these neuropeptides may regulate social play behavior differently in novel (novel cage) as opposed to familiar (home cage) social environments. Administration of the specific AVP V1a receptor (V1aR) antagonist (CH2)5Tyr(Me2)AVP into the lateral septum enhanced home cage social play behavior in males but reduced it in females, confirming our previous findings. These effects were context-specific because V1aR blockade did not alter novel cage social play behavior in either sex. Furthermore, social play in females was reduced by AVP in the novel cage and by OXT in the home cage. Additionally, females administered the specific OXT receptor antagonist desGly-NH2,d(CH2)5−[Tyr(Me)2,Thr4]OVT showed less social play in the novel as compared to the home cage. AVP enhanced anxiety-related behavior in males (tested on the elevated plus-maze), but failed to do so in females, suggesting that exogenous AVP alters social play and anxiety-related behavior via distinct and sex-specific mechanisms. Moreover, none of the other drug treatments that altered social play had an effect on anxiety, suggesting that these drug-induced behavioral alterations are relatively specific to social behavior. Overall, we showed that AVP and OXT systems in the lateral septum modulate social play in juvenile rats in neuropeptide-, sex- and social context-specific ways. These findings underscore the importance of considering not only sex, but also social context, in how AVP and OXT modulate social behavior. PMID:24982623

  11. Sex-specific modulation of juvenile social play behavior by vasopressin and oxytocin depends on social context

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    Remco eBredewold

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available We recently demonstrated that vasopressin (AVP in the lateral septum modulates social play behavior differently in male and female juvenile rats. However, the extent to which different social contexts (i.e., exposure to an unfamiliar play partner in different environments affect the regulation of social play remains largely unknown. Given that AVP and the closely related neuropeptide oxytocin (OXT modulate social behavior as well as anxiety-like behavior, we hypothesized that these neuropeptides may regulate social play behavior differently in novel (novel cage as opposed to familiar (home cage social environments. Administration of the specific AVP V1a receptor (V1aR antagonist (CH25Tyr(Me2AVP into the lateral septum enhanced home cage social play behavior in males but reduced it in females, confirming our previous findings. These effects were context-specific because V1aR blockade did not alter novel cage social play behavior in either sex. Furthermore, social play in females was reduced by AVP in the novel cage and by OXT in the home cage. Additionally, females administered the specific OXT receptor antagonist desGly-NH2,d(CH25-[Tyr(Me2,Thr4]OVT showed less social play in the novel as compared to the home cage. AVP enhanced anxiety-related behavior in males (tested on the elevated plus-maze, but failed to do so in females, suggesting that exogenous AVP alters social play and anxiety-related behavior via distinct and sex-specific mechanisms. Moreover, none of the other drug treatments that altered social play had an effect on anxiety, suggesting that these drug-induced behavioral alterations are relatively specific to social behavior. Overall, we showed that AVP and OXT systems in the lateral septum modulate social play in juvenile rats in neuropeptide-, sex- and social context-specific ways. These findings underscore the importance of considering not only sex, but also social context, in how AVP and OXT modulate social behavior.

  12. The Way Dogs (Canis familiaris Look at Human Emotional Faces Is Modulated by Oxytocin. An Eye-Tracking Study

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    Anna Kis

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available Dogs have been shown to excel in reading human social cues, including facial cues. In the present study we used eye-tracking technology to further study dogs’ face processing abilities. It was found that dogs discriminated between human facial regions in their spontaneous viewing pattern and looked most to the eye region independently of facial expression. Furthermore dogs played most attention to the first two images presented, afterwards their attention dramatically decreases; a finding that has methodological implications. Increasing evidence indicates that the oxytocin system is involved in dogs’ human-directed social competence, thus as a next step we investigated the effects of oxytocin on processing of human facial emotions. It was found that oxytocin decreases dogs’ looking to the human faces expressing angry emotional expression. More interestingly, however, after oxytocin pre-treatment dogs’ preferential gaze toward the eye region when processing happy human facial expressions disappears. These results provide the first evidence that oxytocin is involved in the regulation of human face processing in dogs. The present study is one of the few empirical investigations that explore eye gaze patterns in naïve and untrained pet dogs using a non-invasive eye-tracking technique and thus offers unique but largely untapped method for studying social cognition in dogs.

  13. wALADin benzimidazoles differentially modulate the function of porphobilinogen synthase orthologs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lentz, Christian S; Halls, Victoria S; Hannam, Jeffrey S; Strassel, Silke; Lawrence, Sarah H; Jaffe, Eileen K; Famulok, Michael; Hoerauf, Achim; Pfarr, Kenneth M

    2014-03-27

    The heme biosynthesis enzyme porphobilinogen synthase (PBGS) is a potential drug target in several human pathogens. wALADin1 benzimidazoles have emerged as species-selective PBGS inhibitors against Wolbachia endobacteria of filarial worms. In the present study, we have systematically tested wALADins against PBGS orthologs from bacteria, protozoa, metazoa, and plants to elucidate the inhibitory spectrum. However, the effect of wALADin1 on different PBGS orthologs was not limited to inhibition: several orthologs were stimulated by wALADin1; others remained unaffected. We demonstrate that wALADins allosterically modulate the PBGS homooligomeric equilibrium with inhibition mediated by favoring low-activity oligomers, while 5-aminolevulinic acid, Mg(2+), or K(+) stabilized high-activity oligomers. Pseudomonas aeruginosa PBGS could be inhibited or stimulated by wALADin1 depending on these factors and pH. We have defined the wALADin chemotypes responsible for either inhibition or stimulation, facilitating the design of tailored PBGS modulators for potential application as antimicrobial agents, herbicides, or drugs for porphyric disorders.

  14. Intranasal administration of oxytocin modulates behavioral and amygdala responses to infant crying in females with insecure attachment representations

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hendricx-Riem, M.M.E.; Bakermans-Kranenburg, Marian J.; van IJzendoorn, Marinus H.

    2016-01-01

    The current study examined the effects of oxytocin administration on the response to infant crying in individuals with secure or insecure attachment representations as assessed with the Adult Attachment Interview. We measured feelings of irritation and the use of excessive force as indicated by grip

  15. Context and Individual Characteristics Modulate the Association between Oxytocin Receptor Gene Polymorphism and Social Behavior in Border Collies

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    Borbála Turcsán

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available Recent studies suggest that the relationship between endogenous oxytocin and social affiliative behavior can be critically moderated by contextual and individual factors in humans. While oxytocin has been shown to influence human-directed affiliative behaviors in dogs, no study investigated yet how such factors moderate these effects. Our study aimed to investigate whether the context and the dogs’ individual characteristics moderate the associations between the social affiliative (greeting behavior and four single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs of the oxytocin receptor (OXTR gene. We recorded the greeting behavior in three contexts: (1 when the dog first met an unfamiliar experimenter, (2 during a separation from the owner, and (3 after the experimenter approached the dog in a threatening manner. In the latter two contexts (during separation and after threatening, we categorized the dogs into stressed and non-stressed groups based on their behavior in the preceding situations. In line with previous studies, we found that polymorphisms in the OXTR gene are related to the greeting behavior of dogs. However, we also showed that the analyzed SNPs were associated with greeting in different contexts and in different individuals, suggesting that the four SNPs might be related to different functions of the oxytocin system. The -213A/G was associated with greeting only when the dog had no prior negative experience with the experimenter. The rs8679682 was found in association with greeting in all three contexts but these associations were significant only in non-stressed dogs. The -94T/C was associated with greeting only when the dog was stressed and had an interaction with the sex of the dog. The -74C/G SNP was associated with greeting only when the dog was stressed during separation and also had a sex interaction. Taken together, our results suggest that, similarly to humans, the effects of oxytocin on the dogs’ social behavior are not universal

  16. Dynamic modulation of thymidylate synthase gene expression and fluorouracil sensitivity in human colorectal cancer cells.

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    Kentaro Wakasa

    Full Text Available Biomarkers have revolutionized cancer chemotherapy. However, many biomarker candidates are still in debate. In addition to clinical studies, a priori experimental approaches are needed. Thymidylate synthase (TS expression is a long-standing candidate as a biomarker for 5-fluorouracil (5-FU treatment of cancer patients. Using the Tet-OFF system and a human colorectal cancer cell line, DLD-1, we first constructed an in vitro system in which TS expression is dynamically controllable. Quantitative assays have elucidated that TS expression in the transformant was widely modulated, and that the dynamic range covered 15-fold of the basal level. 5-FU sensitivity of the transformant cells significantly increased in response to downregulated TS expression, although being not examined in the full dynamic range because of the doxycycline toxicity. Intriguingly, our in vitro data suggest that there is a linear relationship between TS expression and the 5-FU sensitivity in cells. Data obtained in a mouse model using transformant xenografts were highly parallel to those obtained in vitro. Thus, our in vitro and in vivo observations suggest that TS expression is a determinant of 5-FU sensitivity in cells, at least in this specific genetic background, and, therefore, support the possibility of TS expression as a biomarker for 5-FU-based cancer chemotherapy.

  17. Nitric oxide synthase modulates CFA-induced thermal hyperalgesia through cytokine regulation in mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Yong; Boettger, Michael K; Reif, Andreas; Schmitt, Angelika; Uçeyler, Nurcan; Sommer, Claudia

    2010-03-02

    Although it has been largely demonstrated that nitric oxide synthase (NOS), a key enzyme for nitric oxide (NO) production, modulates inflammatory pain, the molecular mechanisms underlying these effects remain to be clarified. Here we asked whether cytokines, which have well-described roles in inflammatory pain, are downstream targets of NO in inflammatory pain and which of the isoforms of NOS are involved in this process. Intraperitoneal (i.p.) pretreatment with 7-nitroindazole sodium salt (7-NINA, a selective neuronal NOS inhibitor), aminoguanidine hydrochloride (AG, a selective inducible NOS inhibitor), L-N(G)-nitroarginine methyl ester (L-NAME, a non-selective NOS inhibitor), but not L-N(5)-(1-iminoethyl)-ornithine (L-NIO, a selective endothelial NOS inhibitor), significantly attenuated thermal hyperalgesia induced by intraplantar (i.pl.) injection of complete Freund's adjuvant (CFA). Real-time reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) revealed a significant increase of nNOS, iNOS, and eNOS gene expression, as well as tumor necrosis factor-alpha (TNF), interleukin-1 beta (IL-1beta), and interleukin-10 (IL-10) gene expression in plantar skin, following CFA. Pretreatment with the NOS inhibitors prevented the CFA-induced increase of the pro-inflammatory cytokines TNF and IL-1beta. The increase of the anti-inflammatory cytokine IL-10 was augmented in mice pretreated with 7-NINA or L-NAME, but reduced in mice receiving AG or L-NIO. NNOS-, iNOS- or eNOS-knockout (KO) mice had lower gene expression of TNF, IL-1beta, and IL-10 following CFA, overall corroborating the inhibitor data. These findings lead us to propose that inhibition of NOS modulates inflammatory thermal hyperalgesia by regulating cytokine expression.

  18. Nitric oxide synthase modulates CFA-induced thermal hyperalgesia through cytokine regulation in mice

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    Üçeyler Nurcan

    2010-03-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Although it has been largely demonstrated that nitric oxide synthase (NOS, a key enzyme for nitric oxide (NO production, modulates inflammatory pain, the molecular mechanisms underlying these effects remain to be clarified. Here we asked whether cytokines, which have well-described roles in inflammatory pain, are downstream targets of NO in inflammatory pain and which of the isoforms of NOS are involved in this process. Results Intraperitoneal (i.p. pretreatment with 7-nitroindazole sodium salt (7-NINA, a selective neuronal NOS inhibitor, aminoguanidine hydrochloride (AG, a selective inducible NOS inhibitor, L-N(G-nitroarginine methyl ester (L-NAME, a non-selective NOS inhibitor, but not L-N(5-(1-iminoethyl-ornithine (L-NIO, a selective endothelial NOS inhibitor, significantly attenuated thermal hyperalgesia induced by intraplantar (i.pl. injection of complete Freund's adjuvant (CFA. Real-time reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR revealed a significant increase of nNOS, iNOS, and eNOS gene expression, as well as tumor necrosis factor-alpha (TNF, interleukin-1 beta (IL-1β, and interleukin-10 (IL-10 gene expression in plantar skin, following CFA. Pretreatment with the NOS inhibitors prevented the CFA-induced increase of the pro-inflammatory cytokines TNF and IL-1β. The increase of the anti-inflammatory cytokine IL-10 was augmented in mice pretreated with 7-NINA or L-NAME, but reduced in mice receiving AG or L-NIO. NNOS-, iNOS- or eNOS-knockout (KO mice had lower gene expression of TNF, IL-1β, and IL-10 following CFA, overall corroborating the inhibitor data. Conclusion These findings lead us to propose that inhibition of NOS modulates inflammatory thermal hyperalgesia by regulating cytokine expression.

  19. Oxytocin and Estrogen Receptor β in the Brain: An Overview

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    Alexandra eAcevedo-Rodriguez

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available Oxytocin is a neuropeptide synthesized primarily by neurons of the paraventricular and supraoptic nuclei of the hypothalamus. These neurons have axons that project into the posterior pituitary and release oxytocin into the bloodstream to promote labor and lactation; however, oxytocin neurons also project to other brain areas where it plays a role in numerous brain functions. Oxytocin binds to the widely expressed oxytocin receptor, and, in doing so, it regulates homeostatic processes, social recognition and fear conditioning. In addition to these functions, oxytocin decreases neuroendocrine stress signaling and anxiety-related and depression-like behaviors. Steroid hormones differentially modulate stress responses and alter oxytocin receptor expression. In particular, estrogen receptor β activation has been found to both reduce anxiety-related behaviors and increase oxytocin peptide transcription, suggesting a role for oxytocin in this estrogen receptor β mediated anxiolytic effect. Further research is needed to identify modulators of oxytocin signaling and the pathways utilized and to elucidate molecular mechanisms controlling oxytocin expression to allow better therapeutic manipulations of this system in patient populations.

  20. Response of cardiac endothelial nitric oxide synthase to plasma viscosity modulation in acute isovolemic hemodilution

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    Kanyanatt Kanokwiroon

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Background: Endothelial nitric oxide synthase (eNOS is generally expressed in endocardial cells, vascular endothelial cells and ventricular myocytes. However, there is no experimental study elucidating the relationship between cardiac eNOS expression and elevated plasma viscosity in low oxygen delivery pathological conditions such as hemorrhagic shock-resuscitation and hemodilution. This study tested the hypothesis that elevated plasma viscosity increases cardiac eNOS expression in a hemodilution model, leading to positive effects on cardiac performance. Materials and Methods: Two groups of golden Syrian hamster underwent an acute isovolemic hemodilution where 40% of blood volume was exchanged with 2% (low-viscogenic plasma expander [LVPE] or 6% (high-viscogenic plasma expander [HVPE] of dextran 2000 kDa. In control group, experiment was performed without hemodilution. All groups were performed in awake condition. Experimental parameters, i.e., mean arterial blood pressure (MAP, heart rate, hematocrit, blood gas content and viscosity, were measured. The eNOS expression was evaluated by eNOS Western blot analysis. Results: After hemodilution, MAP decreased to 72% and 93% of baseline in the LVPE and HVPE, respectively. Furthermore, pO 2 in the LVPE group increased highest among the groups. Plasma viscosity in the HVPE group was significantly higher than that in control and LVPE groups. The expression of eNOS in the HVPE group showed higher intensity compared to other groups, especially compared with the control group. Conclusion: Our results demonstrated that cardiac eNOS has responded to plasma viscosity modulation with HVPE and LVPE. This particularly supports the previous studies that revealed the positive effects on cardiac function in animals hemodiluted with HVPE.

  1. Hyperglycemia adversely modulates endothelial nitric oxide synthase during anesthetic preconditioning through tetrahydrobiopterin- and heat shock protein 90-mediated mechanisms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Amour, Julien; Brzezinska, Anna K; Jager, Zachary; Sullivan, Corbin; Weihrauch, Dorothee; Du, Jianhai; Vladic, Nikolina; Shi, Yang; Warltier, David C; Pratt, Phillip F; Kersten, Judy R

    2010-03-01

    Endothelial nitric oxide synthase activity is regulated by (6R-)5,6,7,8-tetrahydrobiopterin (BH4) and heat shock protein 90. The authors tested the hypothesis that hyperglycemia abolishes anesthetic preconditioning (APC) through BH4- and heat shock protein 90-dependent pathways. Myocardial infarct size was measured in rabbits in the absence or presence of APC (30 min of isoflurane), with or without hyperglycemia, and in the presence or absence of the BH4 precursor sepiapterin. Isoflurane-dependent nitric oxide production was measured (ozone chemiluminescence) in human coronary artery endothelial cells cultured in normal (5.5 mm) or high (20 mm) glucose conditions, with or without sepiapterin (10 or 100 microm). APC decreased myocardial infarct size compared with control experiments (26 +/- 6% vs. 46 +/- 3%, respectively; P < 0.05), and this action was blocked by hyperglycemia (43 +/- 4%). Sepiapterin alone had no effect on infarct size (46 +/- 3%) but restored APC during hyperglycemia (21 +/- 3%). The beneficial actions of sepiapterin to restore APC were blocked by the nitric oxide synthase inhibitor N (G)-nitro-L-arginine methyl ester (47 +/- 2%) and the BH4 synthesis inhibitor N-acetylserotonin (46 +/- 3%). Isoflurane increased nitric oxide production to 177 +/- 13% of baseline, and this action was attenuated by high glucose concentrations (125 +/- 6%). Isoflurane increased, whereas high glucose attenuated intracellular BH4/7,8-dihydrobiopterin (BH2) (high performance liquid chromatography), heat shock protein 90-endothelial nitric oxide synthase colocalization (confocal microscopy) and endothelial nitric oxide synthase activation (immunoblotting). Sepiapterin increased BH4/BH2 and dose-dependently restored nitric oxide production during hyperglycemic conditions (149 +/- 12% and 175 +/- 9%; 10 and 100 microm, respectively). The results indicate that tetrahydrobiopterin and heat shock protein 90-regulated endothelial nitric oxide synthase activity play a central

  2. Modulation of Escherichia coli serine acetyltransferase catalytic activity in the cysteine synthase complex

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Benoni, Roberto; De Bei, O.; Paredi, G.; Hayes, C. S.; Franko, N.; Mozzarelli, A.; Bettati, S.; Campanini, B.

    2017-01-01

    Roč. 591, č. 9 (2017), s. 1212-1224 ISSN 0014-5793 Institutional support: RVO:61388963 Keywords : cysteine synthase * protein - protein interaction * serine acetyltransferase Subject RIV: CE - Biochemistry OBOR OECD: Biochemistry and molecular biology Impact factor: 3.623, year: 2016

  3. Exposure to chronic isolation modulates receptors mRNAs for oxytocin and vasopressin in the hypothalamus and heart.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pournajafi-Nazarloo, Hossein; Kenkel, William; Mohsenpour, Seyed Ramezan; Sanzenbacher, Lisa; Saadat, Habibollah; Partoo, Leila; Yee, Jason; Azizi, Fereidoun; Carter, C Sue

    2013-05-01

    The goal of our study was to explore the effect of social isolation stress of varying durations on the plasma oxytocin (OT), messenger ribonucleic acid (mRNA) for oxytocin receptor (OTR), plasma arginine vasopressin (AVP) and mRNA for V1a receptor of AVP (V1aR) expression in the hypothalamus and heart of socially monogamous female and male prairie voles (Microtus ochrogaster). Continuous isolation for 4 weeks (chronic isolation) increased plasma OT level in females, but not in males. One hour of isolation every day for 4 weeks (repeated isolation) was followed by a significant increase in plasma AVP level. Chronic isolation, but not repeated isolation, significantly decreased OTR mRNA in the hypothalamus and heart in both sexes. Chronic isolation significantly decreased cardiac V1aR mRNA, but no effect on hypothalamic V1aR mRNA expression. We did not find a gender difference within repeated social isolation groups. The results of the present study reveal that although chronic social isolation can down-regulate gene expression for the OTR in both sexes, the release of the OT peptide was increased after chronic isolation only in females, possibly somewhat protecting females from the negative consequences of isolation. In both sexes repeated, but not chronic, isolation increased plasma AVP, which could be permissive for mobilization and thus adaptive in response to a repeated stressor. The differential effects of isolation on OT and AVP systems may help in understanding mechanisms through social interactions can be protective against emotional and cardiovascular disorders. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  4. Corticotropin-Releasing Factor Receptors Modulate Oxytocin Release in the Dorsolateral Bed Nucleus of the Stria Terminalis (BNST in Male Rats

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Daisy Martinon

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available The neuropeptide oxytocin (OT plays an important role in the regulation of social and anxiety-like behavior. Our previous studies have shown that OT neurons send projections from the hypothalamus to the dorsolateral bed nucleus of the stria terminalis (BNSTdl, a forebrain region critically involved in the modulation of anxiety-like behavior. Importantly, these OT terminals in the BNSTdl express presynaptic corticotropin releasing factor (CRF receptor type 2 (CRFR2. This suggests that CRFR2 might be involved in the modulation of OT release. To test this hypothesis, we measured OT content in microdialysates collected from the BNSTdl of freely-moving male Sprague-Dawley rats following the administration of a selective CRFR2 agonist (Urocortin 3 or antagonist (Astressin 2B, As2B. To determine if type 1 CRF receptors (CRFR1 are also involved, we used selective CRFR1 antagonist (NBI35965 as well as CRF, a putative ligand of both CRFR1 and CRFR2. All compounds were delivered directly into the BNSTdl via reverse dialysis. OT content in the microdialysates was measured with highly sensitive and selective radioimmunoassay. Blocking CRFR2 with As2B caused an increase in OT content in BNSTdl microdialysates, whereas CRFR2 activation by Urocortin 3 did not have an effect. The As2B-induced increase in OT release was blocked by application of the CRFR1 antagonist demonstrating that the effect was dependent on CRFR1 transmission. Interestingly, CRF alone caused a delayed increase in OT content in BNSTdl microdialysates, which was dependent on CRF2 but not CRF1 receptors. Our results suggest that members of the CRF peptide family modulate OT release in the BNSTdl via a fine-tuned mechanism that involves both CRFR1 and CRFR2. Further exploration of mechanisms by which endogenous OT system is modulated by CRF peptide family is needed to better understand the role of these neuropeptides in the regulation of anxiety and the stress response.

  5. Enhancement of fracture healing in the rat, modulated by compounds that stimulate inducible nitric oxide synthase

    OpenAIRE

    Rajfer, R. A.; Kilic, A.; Neviaser, A. S.; Schulte, L. M.; Hlaing, S. M.; Landeros, J.; Ferrini, M. G.; Ebramzadeh, E.; Park, S-H.

    2017-01-01

    Objectives We investigated the effects on fracture healing of two up-regulators of inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS) in a rat model of an open femoral osteotomy: tadalafil, a phosphodiesterase inhibitor, and the recently reported nutraceutical, COMB-4 (consisting of L-citrulline, Paullinia cupana, ginger and muira puama), given orally for either 14 or 42 days. Materials and Methods Unilateral femoral osteotomies were created in 58 male rats and fixed with an intramedullary compression na...

  6. Oxytocin mediated behavior in invertebrates: An evolutionary perspective.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lockard, Meghan A; Ebert, Margaret S; Bargmann, Cornelia I

    2017-02-01

    The molecular and functional conservation of oxytocin-related neuropeptides in behavior is striking. In animals separated by at least 600 million years of evolution, from roundworms to humans, oxytocin homologs play critical roles in the modulation of reproductive behavior and other biological functions. Here, we review the roles of oxytocin in invertebrate behavior from an evolutionary perspective. We begin by tracing the evolution of oxytocin through the invertebrate animal lineages, and then describe common themes in invertebrate behaviors that are mediated by oxytocin-related peptides, including reproductive behavior, learning and memory, food arousal, and predator/prey relationships. Finally, we discuss interesting future directions that have recently become experimentally tractable. Studying oxytocin in invertebrates offers precise insights into the activity of neuropeptides on well-defined neural circuits; the principles that emerge may also be represented in the more complex vertebrate brain. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. Develop Neurobiol 77: 128-142, 2017. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  7. Oxytocin and vasopressin effects on the neural response to social cooperation are modulated by sex in humans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Feng, Chunliang; Hackett, Patrick D; DeMarco, Ashley C; Chen, Xu; Stair, Sabrina; Haroon, Ebrahim; Ditzen, Beate; Pagnoni, Giuseppe; Rilling, James K

    2015-12-01

    Recent research has examined the effects of oxytocin (OT) and vasopressin (AVP) on human social behavior and brain function. However, most participants have been male, while previous research in our lab demonstrated sexually differentiated effects of OT and AVP on the neural response to reciprocated cooperation. Here we extend our previous work by significantly increasing the number of participants to enable the use of more stringent statistical thresholds that permit more precise localization of OT and AVP effects in the brain. In a double-blind, placebo-controlled study, 153 men and 151 women were randomized to receive 24 IU intranasal OT, 20 IU intranasal AVP or placebo. Afterwards, they were imaged with fMRI while playing an iterated Prisoner's Dilemma Game with same-sex partners. Sex differences were observed for effects of OT on the neural response to reciprocated cooperation, such that OT increased the caduate/putamen response among males, whereas it decreased this response among females. Thus, 24 IU OT may increase the reward or salience of positive social interactions among men, while decreasing their reward or salience among women. Similar sex differences were also observed for AVP effects within bilateral insula and right supramarginal gyrus when a more liberal statistical threshold was employed. While our findings support previous suggestions that exogenous nonapeptides may be effective treatments for disorders such as depression and autism spectrum disorder, they caution against uniformly extending such treatments to men and women alike.

  8. Oxytocin and Psychiatric Disorders

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gokce Nur Say

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available Oxytocin is a neuropeptide that plays critical role in mother-infant bonding, pair bonding and prosocial behaviors. Several neuropsychiatric disorders such as autism, schizophrenia, affective disorders, anxiety disorders, attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder, alcohol/substance addiction, aggression, suicide, eating disorders and personality disorders show abnormalities of oxytocin system. These findings have given rise to the studies searching therapeutic use of oxytocin for psychi-atric disorders. The studies of oxytocin interventions in psychiatric disorders yielded potentially promising findings. This paper reviews the role of oxytocin in emotions, behavior and its effects in psychiatric disorders. [Psikiyatride Guncel Yaklasimlar - Current Approaches in Psychiatry 2016; 8(2: 102-113

  9. Neuroendocrine and cardiovascular parameters during simulation of stress-induced rise in circulating oxytocin in the rat.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ondrejcakova, M; Bakos, J; Garafova, A; Kovacs, L; Kvetnansky, R; Jezova, D

    2010-07-01

    Physiological functions of oxytocin released during stress are not well understood. We have (1) investigated the release of oxytocin during chronic stress using two long-term stress models and (2) simulated stress-induced oxytocin secretion by chronic treatment with oxytocin via osmotic minipumps. Plasma oxytocin levels were significantly elevated in rats subjected to acute immobilization stress for 120 min, to repeated immobilization for 7 days and to combined chronic cold stress exposure for 28 days with 7 days immobilization. To simulate elevation of oxytocin during chronic stress, rats were implanted with osmotic minipumps subcutaneously and treated with oxytocin (3.6 microg/100 g body weight/day) or vehicle for 2 weeks. Chronic subcutaneous oxytocin infusion led to an increase in plasma oxytocin, adrenocorticotropic hormone, corticosterone, adrenal weights and heart/body weight ratio. Oxytocin treatment had no effect on the incorporation of 5-bromo-2-deoxyuridine into DNA in the heart ventricle. Mean arterial pressure response to intravenous phenylephrine was reduced in oxytocin-treated animals. Decrease in adrenal tyrosin hydroxylase mRNA following oxytocin treatment was not statistically significant. Oxytocin treatment failed to modify food intake and slightly increased water consumption. These data provide evidence on increased concentrations of oxytocin during chronic stress. It is possible that the role of oxytocin released during stress is in modulating hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenocortical axis and selected sympathetic functions.

  10. Neurobiology of Maternal Stress: Role of Social Rank and Central Oxytocin in Hypothalamic-Pituitary Adrenal Axis Modulation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jeremy D Coplan

    2015-07-01

    Full Text Available Background: Chronic stress may conceivably require plasticity of maternal physiology and behavior to cope with the conflicting primary demands of infant rearing and foraging for food. In addition, social rank may play a pivotal role in mandating divergent homeostatic adaptations in cohesive social groups. We examined cerebrospinal fluid (CSF oxytocin (OT levels and hypothalamic pituitary adrenal (HPA axis regulation in the context of maternal social stress and assessed the contribution of social rank to dyadic-distance as reflective of distraction from normative maternal-infant interaction. Methods: Twelve socially-housed mother-infant bonnet macaque dyads were studied after variable foraging demand (VFD exposure compared to 11 unstressed dyads. Dyadic-distance was determined by behavioral observation. Social ranking was performed blindly by two observers. Post-VFD maternal plasma cortisol and CSF OT were compared to corresponding measures in non-VFD exposed mothers. Results: High social rank was associated with increased dyadic-distance only in VFD-exposed dyads and not in control dyads. In mothers unexposed to VFD, social rank was not related to maternal cortisol levels whereas VFD-exposed dominant versus subordinate mothers exhibited increased plasma cortisol. Maternal CSF OT directly predicted maternal cortisol only in VFD-exposed mothers. CSF OT was higher in dominant versus subordinate mothers. VFD-exposed mothers with high cortisol specifically exhibited CSF OT elevations in comparison to control groups. Conclusions: Pairing of maternal social rank to dyadic-distance in VFD presumably reduces maternal contingent responsivity, with ensuing long-term sequelae. VFD-exposure dichotomizes maternal HPA axis response as a function of social rank with relatively reduced cortisol in subordinates. OT may serve as a homeostatic buffer during maternal stress exposure.

  11. Oxytocin attenuates social and non-social avoidance: Re-thinking the social specificity of Oxytocin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harari-Dahan, Osnat; Bernstein, Amit

    2017-07-01

    Re-examining decades of the social construal of Oxytocin, the General Approach-Avoidance Hypothesis of Oxytocin (GAAO) predicts that Oxytocin will modulate responding to emotionally-evocative and personally-relevant social and non-social stimuli due to its action on the neural substrate of approach and avoidance motivation. We report the first critical experimental test of GAAO predictions by means of a double-blind intra-nasal administration of Oxytocin vs. placebo in 90 healthy adults (N=90, 50% women). As predicted, we found that among men and women for whom negative emotion (anxious arousal) is motivationally-relevant, intra-nasal administration of Oxytocin reduced behavioral avoidance of emotionally-evocative negatively-valenced social and non-social stimuli, but not closely matched emotionally-neutral stimuli. Findings cannot be explained by extant social theories of Oxytocin. We discuss the implications of the present findings for basic and translational clinical Oxytocin research. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  12. Site-directed mutagenesis of serine 158 demonstrates its role in spinach leaf sucrose-phosphate synthase modulation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Toroser, D.; McMichael, R. Jr; Krause, K. P.; Kurreck, J.; Sonnewald, U.; Stitt, M.; Huber, S. C.; Davies, E. (Principal Investigator)

    1999-01-01

    Site-directed mutagenesis of spinach sucrose-phosphate synthase (SPS) was performed to investigate the role of Ser158 in the modulation of spinach leaf SPS. Tobacco plants expressing the spinach wild-type (WT), S158A, S158T and S157F/S158E SPS transgenes were produced. Expression of transgenes appeared not to reduce expression of the tobacco host SPS. SPS activity in the WT and the S158T SPS transgenics showed light/dark modulation, whereas the S158A and S157F/S158E mutants were not similarly light/dark modulated: the S158A mutant enzyme was not inactivated in the dark, and the S157F/S158E was not activated in the light. The inability to modulate the activity of the S158A mutant enzyme by protein phosphorylation was demonstrated in vitro. The WT spinach enzyme immunopurified from dark transgenic tobacco leaves had a low initial activation state, and could be activated by PP2A and subsequently inactivated by SPS-kinase plus ATP. Rapid purification of the S158A mutant enzyme from dark leaves of transgenic plants using spinach-specific monoclonal antibodies yielded enzyme that had a high initial activation state, and pre-incubation with leaf PP2A or ATP plus SPS-kinase (the PKIII enzyme) caused little modulation of activity. The results demonstrate the regulatory significance of Ser158 as the major site responsible for dark inactivation of spinach SPS in vivo, and indicate that the significance of phosphorylation is the introduction of a negative charge at the Ser158 position.

  13. Nicotianamine synthase overexpression positively modulates iron homeostasis-related genes in high iron rice

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Meng eWang

    2013-05-01

    Full Text Available Nearly one-third of the world population, mostly women and children, suffer from iron malnutrition and its consequences, such as anemia or impaired mental development. Biofortification of rice, which is a staple crop for nearly half of the world’s population, can significantly contribute in alleviating iron deficiency. NFP rice (transgenic rice expressing nicotianamine synthase, ferritin and phytase genes has a more than six-fold increase in iron content in polished rice grains, resulting from the synergistic action of nicotianamine synthase (NAS and ferritin transgenes. We investigated iron homeostasis in NFP plants by analyzing the expression of 28 endogenous rice genes known to be involved in the homeostasis of iron and other metals, in iron-deficient and iron-sufficient conditions. RNA was collected from different tissues (roots, flag leaves, grains and at three developmental stages during grain filling. NFP plants showed increased sensitivity to iron-deficiency conditions and changes in the expression of endogenous genes involved in nicotianamine (NA metabolism, in comparison to their non-transgenic siblings. Elevated transcript levels were detected in NFP plants for several iron transporters. In contrast, expression of OsYSL2, which encodes a member of Yellow Stripe-like protein family, and a transporter of the NA-Fe(II complex was reduced in NFP plants under low iron conditions, indicating that expression of OsYSL2 is regulated by the endogenous iron status. Expression of the transgenes did not significantly affect overall iron homeostasis in NFP plants, which establishes the engineered push-pull mechanism as a suitable strategy to increase rice endosperm iron content.

  14. Social evolution. Oxytocin-gaze positive loop and the coevolution of human-dog bonds.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nagasawa, Miho; Mitsui, Shouhei; En, Shiori; Ohtani, Nobuyo; Ohta, Mitsuaki; Sakuma, Yasuo; Onaka, Tatsushi; Mogi, Kazutaka; Kikusui, Takefumi

    2015-04-17

    Human-like modes of communication, including mutual gaze, in dogs may have been acquired during domestication with humans. We show that gazing behavior from dogs, but not wolves, increased urinary oxytocin concentrations in owners, which consequently facilitated owners' affiliation and increased oxytocin concentration in dogs. Further, nasally administered oxytocin increased gazing behavior in dogs, which in turn increased urinary oxytocin concentrations in owners. These findings support the existence of an interspecies oxytocin-mediated positive loop facilitated and modulated by gazing, which may have supported the coevolution of human-dog bonding by engaging common modes of communicating social attachment. Copyright © 2015, American Association for the Advancement of Science.

  15. C75, a fatty acid synthase inhibitor, modulates AMP-activated protein kinase to alter neuronal energy metabolism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Landree, Leslie E; Hanlon, Andrea L; Strong, David W; Rumbaugh, Gavin; Miller, Ian M; Thupari, Jagan N; Connolly, Erin C; Huganir, Richard L; Richardson, Christine; Witters, Lee A; Kuhajda, Francis P; Ronnett, Gabriele V

    2004-01-30

    C75, a synthetic inhibitor of fatty acid synthase (FAS), is hypothesized to alter the metabolism of neurons in the hypothalamus that regulate feeding behavior to contribute to the decreased food intake and profound weight loss seen with C75 treatment. In the present study, we characterize the suitability of primary cultures of cortical neurons for studies designed to investigate the consequences of C75 treatment and the alteration of fatty acid metabolism in neurons. We demonstrate that in primary cortical neurons, C75 inhibits FAS activity and stimulates carnitine palmitoyltransferase-1 (CPT-1), consistent with its effects in peripheral tissues. C75 alters neuronal ATP levels and AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK) activity. Neuronal ATP levels are affected in a biphasic manner with C75 treatment, decreasing initially, followed by a prolonged increase above control levels. Cerulenin, a FAS inhibitor, causes a similar biphasic change in ATP levels, although levels do not exceed control. C75 and cerulenin modulate AMPK phosphorylation and activity. TOFA, an inhibitor of acetyl-CoA carboxylase, increases ATP levels, but does not affect AMPK activity. Several downstream pathways are affected by C75 treatment, including glucose metabolism and acetyl-CoA carboxylase (ACC) phosphorylation. These data demonstrate that C75 modulates the levels of energy intermediates, thus, affecting the energy sensor AMPK. Similar effects in hypothalamic neurons could form the basis for the effects of C75 on feeding behavior.

  16. Estrogen receptor β and oxytocin interact to modulate anxiety-like behavior and neuroendocrine stress reactivity in adult male and female rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kudwa, Andrea E; McGivern, Robert F; Handa, Robert J

    2014-04-22

    The hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis is activated in response to stressors and is controlled by neurons residing in the paraventricular nucleus of the hypothalamus (PVN). Although gonadal steroid hormones can influence HPA reactivity to stressors, the exact mechanism of action is not fully understood. It is known, however, that estrogen receptor β (ERβ) inhibits HPA reactivity and decreases anxiety-like behavior in rodents. Since ERβ is co-expressed with oxytocin (OT) in neurons of the PVN, an ERβ-selective agonist was utilized to test the whether ERβ decreases stress-induced HPA reactivity and anxiety-like behaviors via an OTergic pathway. Adult gonadectomized male and female rats were administered diarylpropionitrile, or vehicle, peripherally for 5days. When tested for anxiety-like behavior on the elevated plus maze (EPM), diarylpropionitrile-treated males and females significantly increased time on the open arm of the EPM compared to vehicle controls indicating that ERβ reduces anxiety-like behaviors. One week after behavioral evaluation, rats were subjected to a 20minute restraint stress. Treatment with diarylpropionitrile reduced CORT and ACTH responses in both males and females. Subsequently, another group of animals was implanted with cannulae directed at the lateral ventricle. One week later, rats underwent the same protocol as above but with the additional treatment of intracerebroventricular infusion with an OT antagonist (des Gly-NH2 d(CH2)5 [Tyr(Me)(2), Thr(4)] OVT) or VEH, 20min prior to behavioral evaluation. OT antagonist treatment blocked the effects of diarylpropionitrile on the display of anxiety-like behaviors and plasma CORT levels. These data indicate that ERβ and OT interact to modulate the HPA reactivity and the display of anxiety-like behaviors. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  17. Oxytocin Attenuates Neural Reactivity to Masked Threat Cues from the Eyes

    OpenAIRE

    Kanat, Manuela; Heinrichs, Markus; Schwarzwald, Ralf; Domes, Gregor

    2014-01-01

    The neuropeptide oxytocin has recently been shown to modulate covert attention shifts to emotional face cues and to improve discrimination of masked facial emotions. These results suggest that oxytocin modulates facial emotion processing at early perceptual stages prior to full evaluation of the emotional expression. Here, we used functional magnetic resonance imaging to examine whether oxytocin alters neural responses to backwardly masked angry and happy faces while controlling for attention...

  18. Modulating central gain in tinnitus: changes in nitric oxide synthase in the ventral cochlear nucleus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coomber, Ben; Kowalkowski, Victoria L; Berger, Joel I; Palmer, Alan Richard; Wallace, Mark Nelson

    2015-01-01

    A significant challenge in tinnitus research lies in explaining how acoustic insult leads to tinnitus in some individuals, but not others. One possibility is genetic variability in the expression and function of neuromodulators - components of neural signaling that alter the balance of excitation and inhibition in neural circuits. An example is nitric oxide (NO) - a free radical and potent neuromodulator in the mammalian brain - that regulates plasticity via both pre-synaptic and postsynaptic mechanisms. Changes in NO have previously been implicated in tinnitus generation, specifically in the ventral cochlear nucleus (VCN). Here, we examined nitric oxide synthase (NOS) - the enzyme responsible for NO production - in the guinea pig VCN following acoustic trauma. NOS was present in most cell types - including spherical and globular bushy cells, small, medium, and large multipolar cells, and octopus cells - spanning the entire extent of the VCN. The staining pattern was symmetrical in control animals. Unilateral acoustic over-exposure (AOE) resulted in marked asymmetries between ipsilateral and contralateral sides of the VCN in terms of the distribution of NOS across the cochlear nuclei in animals with behavioral evidence of tinnitus: fewer NOS-positive cells and a reduced level of NOS staining was present across the whole extent of the contralateral VCN, relative to the ipsilateral VCN. The asymmetric pattern of NOS-containing cells was observed as early as 1 day after AOE and was also present in some animals at 3, 7, and 21 days after AOE. However, it was not until 8 weeks after AOE, when tinnitus had developed, that asymmetries were significant overall, compared with control animals. Asymmetrical NOS expression was not correlated with shifts in the threshold hearing levels. Variability in NOS expression between animals may represent one underlying difference that can be linked to whether or not tinnitus develops after noise exposure.

  19. Modulating central gain in tinnitus: Changes in nitric oxide synthase in the ventral cochlear nucleus

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ben eCoomber

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available A significant challenge in tinnitus research lies in explaining how acoustic insult leads to tinnitus in some individuals, but not others. One possibility is genetic variability in the expression and function of neuromodulators – components of neural signalling that alter the balance of excitation and inhibition in neural circuits. An example is nitric oxide (NO – a free radical and potent neuromodulator in the mammalian brain – that regulates plasticity via both presynaptic and postsynaptic mechanisms. Changes in NO have previously been implicated in tinnitus generation, specifically in the ventral cochlear nucleus (VCN. Here, we examined nitric oxide synthase (NOS – the enzyme responsible for NO production – in the guinea pig VCN following acoustic trauma. NOS was present in most cell types – including spherical and globular bushy cells, small, medium and large multipolar cells, and octopus cells – spanning the entire extent of the VCN. The staining pattern was symmetrical in control animals. Unilateral acoustic over-exposure (AOE resulted in marked asymmetries between ipsilateral and contralateral sides of the VCN in terms of the distribution of NOS across the cochlear nuclei in animals with behavioural evidence of tinnitus: fewer NOS-positive cells and a reduced level of NOS staining was present across the whole extent of the contralateral VCN, relative to the ipsilateral VCN. The asymmetric pattern of NOS-containing cells was observed as early as one day after AOE and was also present in some animals at 3, 7 and 21 days after AOE. However it was not until eight weeks after AOE, when tinnitus had developed, that asymmetries were significant overall, compared with control animals. Asymmetrical NOS expression was not correlated with shifts in the threshold hearing levels. Variability in NOS expression between animals may represent one underlying difference that can be linked to whether or not tinnitus develops after noise

  20. A stable blue-light-derived signal modulates ultraviolet-light-induced activation of the chalcone-synthase gene in cultured parsley cells

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ohl, S.; Hahlbrock, K.; Schäfer, E.

    1989-01-01

    Run-off transcription assays were used to demonstrate that both the ultraviolet (UV)-B and blue-light receptors control transcription rates for chalcone-synthase mRNA in the course of light-induced flavonoid synthesis in parsley (Petroselinum crispum Miller (A.W. Hill)) cell-suspension cultures. Blue and red light alone, presumably acting via a blue-light receptor and active phytochrome (far-red absorbing form) respectively, can induce accumulation of chalcone-synthase mRNA. The extent of the response is however considerably smaller than that obtained when these wavebands are applied in combination with UV light. A preirradiation with blue light strongly increases the response to a subsequent UV pulse and this modulating effect of blue light is stable for at least 20 h. The modulating effect is abolished by a UV induction but can be reestablished by a second irradiation with blue light. (author)

  1. The Class II trehalose 6-phosphate synthase gene PvTPS9 modulates trehalose metabolism in Phaseolus vulgaris nodules.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Aarón Barraza

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available Legumes form symbioses with rhizobia, producing nitrogen-fixing nodules on the roots of the plant host. The network of plant signaling pathways affecting carbon metabolism may determine the final number of nodules. The trehalose biosynthetic pathway regulates carbon metabolism and plays a fundamental role in plant growth and development, as well as in plant-microbe interactions. The expression of genes for trehalose synthesis during nodule development suggests that this metabolite may play a role in legume-rhizobia symbiosis. In this work, PvTPS9, which encodes a Class II trehalose-6-phosphate synthase (TPS of common bean (Phaseolus vulgaris, was silenced by RNA interference in transgenic nodules. The silencing of PvTPS9 in root nodules resulted in a reduction of 85% (± 1% of its transcript, which correlated with a 30% decrease in trehalose contents of transgenic nodules and in untransformed leaves. Composite transgenic plants with PvTPS9 silenced in the roots showed no changes in nodule number and nitrogen fixation, but a severe reduction in plant biomass and altered transcript profiles of all Class II TPS genes. Our data suggest that PvTPS9 plays a key role in modulating trehalose metabolism in the symbiotic nodule and, therefore, in the whole plant.

  2. GNC and CGA1 Modulate Chlorophyll Biosynthesis and Glutamate Synthase (GLU1/Fd-GOGAT) Expression in Arabidopsis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hudson, Darryl; Guevara, David; Yaish, Mahmoud W.; Hannam, Carol; Long, Nykoll; Clarke, Joseph D.; Bi, Yong-Mei; Rothstein, Steven J.

    2011-01-01

    Chloroplast development is an important determinant of plant productivity and is controlled by environmental factors including amounts of light and nitrogen as well as internal phytohormones including cytokinins and gibberellins (GA). The paralog GATA transcription factors GNC and CGA1/GNL up-regulated by light, nitrogen and cytokinin while also being repressed by GA signaling. Modifying the expression of these genes has previously been shown to influence chlorophyll content in Arabidopsis while also altering aspects of germination, elongation growth and flowering time. In this work, we also use transgenic lines to demonstrate that GNC and CGA1 exhibit a partially redundant control over chlorophyll biosynthesis. We provide novel evidence that GNC and CGA1 influence both chloroplast number and leaf starch in proportion to their transcript level. GNC and CGA1 were found to modify the expression of chloroplast localized GLUTAMATE SYNTHASE (GLU1/Fd-GOGAT), which is the primary factor controlling nitrogen assimilation in green tissue. Altering GNC and CGA1 expression was also found to modulate the expression of important chlorophyll biosynthesis genes (GUN4, HEMA1, PORB, and PORC). As previously demonstrated, the CGA1 transgenic plants demonstrated significantly altered timing to a number of developmental events including germination, leaf production, flowering time and senescence. In contrast, the GNC transgenic lines we analyzed maintain relatively normal growth phenotypes outside of differences in chloroplast development. Despite some evidence for partial divergence, results indicate that regulation of both GNC and CGA1 by light, nitrogen, cytokinin, and GA acts to modulate nitrogen assimilation, chloroplast development and starch production. Understanding the mechanisms controlling these processes is important for agricultural biotechnology. PMID:22102866

  3. Glycogen Synthase Kinase-3 Modulates Hyperosmotic-Induced Urea Transporter A1 Relocation in the Inner Medullary Collecting Duct Cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Yong-Xia; Huang, Yun; Liu, Song; Mao, Yan; Yuan, Cheng-Yan; Yang, Xiao; Yao, Li-Jun

    2016-01-01

    Glycogen synthase kinase 3 (GSK3) regulates urine concentration by mediating the vasopressin-induced aquaporin 2 expression and water permeability, although it is unknown whether GSK3 also mediates the accumulation of the urea transporter A1 (UT-A1). The aim of this study is to investigate the effect of GSK3 on UT-A1 distribution. Mouse inner medullary collecting duct 3 cells were transfected with UT-A1-GFP construct. The stable transfected cells were cultured under hypertonic conditions, treated with GSK3 inhibitor lithium chloride, GSK3 activator, lysosome or proteasome inhibitor. The expression levels of UT-A1, GSK3, and phospho-GSK3 were analyzed using western blot. The interaction between UT-A1 and the Golgi apparatus was examined using confocal immunofluorescence microscope. The UT-A1 trafficking was examined using the biotinylation of surface membranes. UT-A1 dissociated away from the Golgi apparatus and translocated to the plasma membrane under hypertonic-NaCl and NaCl plus urea stimulation. This movement was accompanied by the increased phosphorylation of GSK3 and its localization on the cellular membrane. Moreover, these results were duplicated by treating the cells with the GSK3 inhibitor, and by contrast, were partially reversed by the GSK3 activator. Treating cells with a lysosome or proteasome inhibitor failed to attenuate the effects of hypertonic stimulus, indicating that the loss of UT-A1 from the Golgi was not due to degradation. Our results suggest that GSK3 may in part modulate the hypertonic-induced intracellular UT-A1 redistribution and its accumulation on the plasma membrane, which may constitute another mechanism by which GSK3 modulates urine concentration. © 2016 S. Karger AG, Basel.

  4. Regulation of Banana Phytoene Synthase (MaPSY) Expression, Characterization and Their Modulation under Various Abiotic Stress Conditions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kaur, Navneet; Pandey, Ashutosh; Shivani; Kumar, Prateek; Pandey, Pankaj; Kesarwani, Atul K.; Mantri, Shrikant S.; Awasthi, Praveen; Tiwari, Siddharth

    2017-01-01

    Phytoene synthase (PSY) is a key regulatory enzyme of carotenoid biosynthesis pathway in plants. The present study examines the role of PSY in carotenogenesis and stress management in banana. Germplasm screening of 10 Indian cultivars showed that Nendran (3011.94 μg/100 g dry weight) and Rasthali (105.35 μg/100 g dry weight) contained the highest and lowest amounts of β-carotene, respectively in ripe fruit-pulp. Nendran ripe pulp also showed significantly higher antioxidant activity as compared to Rasthali. Meta-analysis of three banana PSY genes (MaPSY1, MaPSY2, and MaPSY3) was performed to identify their structural features, subcellular, and chromosomal localization in banana genome. The distinct expression patterns of MaPSY1, MaPSY2, and MaPSY3 genes were observed in various tissues, and fruit developmental stages of these two contrasting cultivars, suggesting differential regulation of the banana PSY genes. A positive correlation was observed between the expression of MaPSY1 and β-carotene accumulation in the ripe fruit-peel and pulp of Nendran. The presence of stress responsive cis-regulatory motifs in promoter region of MaPSY genes were correlated with the expression pattern during various stress (abscisic acid, methyl jasmonate, salicylic acid and dark) treatments. The positive modulation of MaPSY1 noticed under abiotic stresses suggested its role in plant physiological functions and defense response. The amino acid sequence analysis of the PSY proteins in contrasting cultivars revealed that all PSY comprises conserved domains related to enzyme activity. Bacterial complementation assay has validated the functional activity of six PSY proteins and among them PSY1 of Nendran (Nen-PSY1) gave the highest activity. These data provide new insights into the regulation of PSY expression in banana by developmental and stress related signals that can be explored in the banana improvement programs. PMID:28421096

  5. Oxytocin's role on the cardiorespiratory activity of endotoxemic rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Elorza-Ávila, Ana Rosa; Reyes-Lagos, José Javier; Hadamitzky, Martin; Peña-Castillo, Miguel Ángel; Echeverría, Juan Carlos; Ortiz-Pedroza, María Del Rocío; Lückemann, Laura; Schedlowski, Manfred; Pacheco-López, Gustavo

    2017-02-01

    Recent findings concerning oxytocin indicate its anti-inflammatory, cardioprotective and parasympathetic modulating properties. In this study, we investigated the effects of systemically applied oxytocin on the cardiorespiratory activity in a rodent model of moderate endotoxemia. Telemetrically recorded electrocardiogram (ECGs) from animals which received lipopolysaccharide (LPS); oxytocin (Ox); lipopolysaccharide+oxytocin (LPS+Ox), or vehicle (V) were analyzed using the ECG-derived respiration (EDR) technique to estimate the respiratory rate. The mean R-R interval and the spectral parameters of heart rate variability (HRV), such as the natural logarithm of the high frequency (lnHF) and low frequency (lnLF) components were also estimated up to 24h after treatment. The endotoxemic animals (LPS) showed an elevated respiratory rate as well as a reduced mean R-R interval, lnHF and lnLF components compared to controls (V) from +5 to +12h after the treatment. The administration of oxytocin significantly attenuated the hyperventilation produced by the LPS-induced endotoxemia (LPS+Ox) and restored the values of the mean R-R interval and such spectral parameters at different time points. Our results support the existence of a link among the respiratory, cardiovascular, and immune systems in which oxytocin seems to act as a potential cardioprotective peptide by favoring cardiac cholinergic autonomic coupling. As a result, oxytocin diminished animal's endotoxemic tachypnea and restored the cardiorespiratory interactions, which was indicated by the spectral components of HRV. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  6. Oxytocin and first impressions

    OpenAIRE

    Friberg, Mads

    2012-01-01

    Subtle facial expressions may cause "core impressions" of other people, i.e. a feeling of like or dislike witch is affected by facial cues that is not explicitly and consciously recognized. In the present investigation, we were interested in how the neuropeptide oxytocin affects recognition of these subtle facial expressions. Participants received oxytocin or placebo, and viewed static and dynamic "hybrid" faces that showed a facial expression (happiness, anger, fear, sadness) only in the lo...

  7. Radioimmunoassay of oxytocin

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Dawood, M.Y.; Raghavan, K.S.; Pociask, C.

    1978-01-01

    The evaluation of a radioimmunoassay of oxytocin is described. The method involved careful collection and transportation of blood at 4 0 C, acidification of the plasma, extraction with Fuller's earth and radioimmunoassay using antisera raised in rabbits immunized against oxytocin conjugated to bovine serum albumin and 125 I-labelled oxytocin. The antisera showed insignificant cross-reaction with a variety of small peptides including vasopressin and vasotocin. The limit of detection of the assay was 2.5 pg with intra-assay and interassay coefficients of variation of 7 to 15% and 12 to 18% respectively. Seventy-seven per cent (88 out of 116) of the pregnant women tested had detect-able maternal plasma oxytocin. Serial samples of maternal plasma showed a significant increase in oxytocin from the first to the second stage of labour and a significant decrease in the third stage. Oxytocin concentrations in the umbilical arterial plasma were significantly higher in patients in labour. The significance of these findings is discussed. (author)

  8. Oxytocin, stress and social behavior: neurogenetics of the human oxytocin system.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kumsta, Robert; Heinrichs, Markus

    2013-02-01

    The neuropeptide oxytocin has had key roles throughout mammalian evolution in the regulation of complex social cognition and behaviors, such as attachment, parental care, pair-bonding, as well as social exploration and recognition. Recently, studies have begun to provide evidence that the function of this neuropeptide is impaired in mental disorders associated with social deficits. In this review, we focus on the genetic mechanisms of inter-individual variation in the social neuropeptide signaling. We discuss molecular genetic studies which identified variations in specific genes contributing to individual differences in social behavior and cognition, with a focus on the gene coding for the oxytocin receptor (OXTR) emerging as a particularly promising candidate. We conclude that molecular studies are warranted to elucidate functional consequences of variants that have shown stable associations with sociobehavioral phenotypes. With regard to the variability in individual responses to oxytocin administration, we advocate the need for pharmacogenetic approaches in order to test how the efficacy of oxytocin administration is modulated by genetic variation of OXTR or other genes involved in oxytocin signaling. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  9. Oxytocin and eating disorders: a narrative review on emerging findings and perspectives.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Giel, Katrin; Zipfel, Stephan; Hallschmid, Manfred

    2017-11-28

    The hypothalamic neuropeptide oxytocin regulates reproductive behavior and mother-infant interaction, and conclusive studies in humans indicate that oxytocin is also a potent modulator of psychosocial function. Pilot experiments have yielded first evidence that this neuropeptide moreover influences eating behavior. Brain administration of oxytocin in animals with normal weight, but also with diet-induced or genetically induced obesity, attenuates food intake and reduces body weight. In normal-weight and obese individuals, acute intranasal oxytocin delivery curbs calorie intake from main dishes and snacks. Such effects might converge with the poignant social and cognitive impact of oxytocin to also improve dysfunctional eating behavior in the therapeutic context. This assumption has received support in first studies showing that oxytocin might play a role in the disease process of anorexia nervosa. In contrast, respective experiments in patients with bulimia nervosa and binge eating disorder are still scarce. We briefly summarize currently available studies on the involvement of the oxytocin system in the pathophysiology of eating disorders, as well as on the effects of oxytocin administration in patients with these disorders. We propose a framework of oxytocin's role and its therapeutic potential in eating disorders that aims at integrating social and metabolic aspects of its pharmacological profile, and ponder perspectives and limitations of oxytocin use in the clinical setting. Copyright© Bentham Science Publishers; For any queries, please email at epub@benthamscience.org.

  10. Glucose-Modulated Mitochondria Adaptation in Tumor Cells: A Focus on ATP Synthase and Inhibitor Factor 1

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Irene Mavelli

    2012-02-01

    Full Text Available Warburg’s hypothesis has been challenged by a number of studies showing that oxidative phosphorylation is repressed in some tumors, rather than being inactive per se. Thus, treatments able to shift energy metabolism by activating mitochondrial pathways have been suggested as an intriguing basis for the optimization of antitumor strategies. In this study, HepG2 hepatocarcinoma cells were cultivated with different metabolic substrates under conditions mimicking “positive” (activation/biogenesis or “negative” (silencing mitochondrial adaptation. In addition to the expected up-regulation of mitochondrial biogenesis, glucose deprivation caused an increase in phosphorylating respiration and a rise in the expression levels of the ATP synthase β subunit and Inhibitor Factor 1 (IF1. Hyperglycemia, on the other hand, led to a markedly decreased level of the transcriptional coactivator PGC-α suggesting down-regulation of mitochondrial biogenesis, although no change in mitochondrial mass and no impairment of phosphorylating respiration were observed. Moreover, a reduction in mitochondrial networking and in ATP synthase dimer stability was produced. No effect on β-ATP synthase expression was elicited. Notably, hyperglycemia caused an increase in IF1 expression levels, but it did not alter the amount of IF1 associated with ATP synthase. These results point to a new role of IF1 in relation to high glucose utilization by tumor cells, in addition to its well known effect upon mitochondrial ATP synthase regulation.

  11. Participation of hippocampal nitric oxide synthase and soluble guanylate cyclase in the modulation of behavioral responses elicited by the rat forced swimming test.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sales, Amanda J; Hiroaki-Sato, Vinícius A; Joca, Sâmia R L

    2017-02-01

    Systemic or hippocampal administration of nitric oxide (NO) synthase inhibitors induces antidepressant-like effects in animals, implicating increased hippocampal levels of NO in the neurobiology of depression. However, the role played by different NO synthase in this process has not been clearly defined. As stress is able to induce neuroinflammatory mechanisms and trigger the expression of inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS) in the brain, as well as upregulate neuronal nitric oxide synthase (nNOS) activity, the aim of the present study was to investigate the possible differential contribution of hippocampal iNOS and nNOS in the modulation of the consequences of stress elicited by the forced swimming test. Male Wistar rats received intrahippocampal injections, immediately after the pretest or 1 h before the forced swimming test, of selective inhibitors of nNOS (N-propyl-L-arginine), iNOS (1400W), or sGC (ODQ), the main pharmacological target for NO. Stress exposure increased nNOS and phospho-nNOS levels at all time points, whereas iNOS expression was increased only 24 h after the pretest. All drugs induced an antidepressant-like effect. However, whereas the nNOS inhibitor was equally effective when injected at different times, the iNOS inhibitor was more effective 24 h after the pretest. These results suggest that hippocampal nNOS and iNOS contribute to increase in NO levels in response to stress, although with a differential time course after stress exposure.

  12. Engineering of Ion Sensing by the Cystathionine beta-Synthase Module of the ABC Transporter OpuA

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Mahmood, Nik A. B. N.; Biemans-Oldehinkel, Esther; Poolman, Bert

    2009-01-01

    We have previously shown that the C-terminal cystathionine beta-synthase (CBS) domains of the nucleotide-binding domains of the ABC transporter OpuA, in conjunction with an anionic membrane surface function, act as sensor of internal ionic strength (I(in)). Here, we show that a surface-exposed

  13. Imidazopyridine-Based Fatty Acid Synthase Inhibitors That Show Anti-HCV Activity and in Vivo Target Modulation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oslob, Johan D; Johnson, Russell J; Cai, Haiying; Feng, Shirley Q; Hu, Lily; Kosaka, Yuko; Lai, Julie; Sivaraja, Mohanram; Tep, Samnang; Yang, Hanbiao; Zaharia, Cristiana A; Evanchik, Marc J; McDowell, Robert S

    2013-01-10

    Potent imidazopyridine-based inhibitors of fatty acid synthase (FASN) are described. The compounds are shown to have antiviral (HCV replicon) activities that track with their biochemical activities. The most potent analogue (compound 19) also inhibits rat FASN and inhibits de novo palmitate synthesis in vitro (cell-based) as well as in vivo.

  14. Oxytocin as an Indicator of Psychological and Social Well-Being in Domesticated Animals: A Critical Review

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jean-Loup Rault

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available Oxytocin is often portrayed as a hormone specific to social behavior, reflective of positive welfare states, and linked to mental states. Research on oxytocin in domesticated animal species has been few to date but is rapidly increasing (in dog, pig, cattle, sheep, with direct implications for animal welfare. This review evaluates the evidence for the specificity of oxytocin as an indicator of: 1. Social, 2. Positive, and 3. Psychological well-being. Oxytocin has most often been studied in socially relevant paradigms, with a lack of non-social control paradigms. Oxytocin research appears biased toward investigating positive valence, with a lack of control in valence or arousal. Oxytocin actions are modulated by the environmental and social contexts, which are important factors to consider. Limited evidence supports that oxytocin's actions are linked to psychological states; nevertheless whether this is a direct effect of oxytocin per se remains to be demonstrated. Overall, it is premature to judge oxytocin's potential as an animal welfare indicator given the few and discrepant findings and a lack of standardization in methodology. We cover potential causes for discrepancies and suggest solutions through appropriate methodological design, oxytocin sampling or delivery, analysis and reporting. Of particular interest, the oxytocinergic system as a whole remains poorly understood. Appreciation for the differences that social contact and group living pose in domesticated species and the way they interact with humans should be key considerations in using oxytocin as a psychosocial indicator of well-being.

  15. "Lie to me"-Oxytocin impairs lie detection between sexes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pfundmair, Michaela; Erk, Wiebke; Reinelt, Annika

    2017-10-01

    The hormone oxytocin modulates various aspects of social behaviors and even seems to lead to a tendency for gullibility. The aim of the current study was to investigate the effect of oxytocin on lie detection. We hypothesized that people under oxytocin would be particularly susceptible to lies told by people of the opposite sex. After administration of oxytocin or a placebo, male and female participants were asked to judge the veracity of statements from same- vs. other-sex actors who either lied or told the truth. Results showed that oxytocin decreased the ability of both male and female participants to correctly classify other-sex statements as truths or lies compared to placebo. This effect was based on a lower ability to detect lies and not a stronger bias to regard truth statements as false. Revealing a new effect of oxytocin, the findings may support assumptions about the hormone working as a catalyst for social adaption. Copyright © 2017. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  16. A randomised controlled trial comparing oxytocin and oxytocin + ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    'rule of threes' as a means of administering oxytocin: 3 IU IVI as a slow bolus every 3 minutes depending on the contraction of the uterus.[5] The following guidelines were published in the SAMJ in. April 2015 for primary prophylaxis of PPH at CS:[6] (i) oxytocin. 2.5 IU IVI as a slow bolus (over 30 seconds); (ii) oxytocin 7.5 IU.

  17. Expression and activation of the oxytocin receptor in airway smooth muscle cells: Regulation by TNFα and IL-13

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Siddiqui Salman

    2010-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background During pregnancy asthma may remain stable, improve or worsen. The factors underlying the deleterious effect of pregnancy on asthma remain unknown. Oxytocin is a neurohypophyseal protein that regulates a number of central and peripheral responses such as uterine contractions and milk ejection. Additional evidence suggests that oxytocin regulates inflammatory processes in other tissues given the ubiquitous expression of the oxytocin receptor. The purpose of this study was to define the role of oxytocin in modulating human airway smooth muscle (HASMCs function in the presence and absence of IL-13 and TNFα, cytokines known to be important in asthma. Method Expression of oxytocin receptor in cultured HASMCs was performed by real time PCR and flow cytomery assays. Responses to oxytocin was assessed by fluorimetry to detect calcium signals while isolated tracheal rings and precision cut lung slices (PCLS were used to measure contractile responses. Finally, ELISA was used to compare oxytocin levels in the bronchoalveloar lavage (BAL samples from healthy subjects and those with asthma. Results PCR analysis demonstrates that OXTR is expressed in HASMCs under basal conditions and that both interleukin (IL-13 and tumor necrosis factor (TNFα stimulate a time-dependent increase in OXTR expression at 6 and 18 hr. Additionally, oxytocin increases cytosolic calcium levels in fura-2-loaded HASMCs that were enhanced in cells treated for 24 hr with IL-13. Interestingly, TNFα had little effect on oxytocin-induced calcium response despite increasing receptor expression. Using isolated murine tracheal rings and PCLS, oxytocin also promoted force generation and airway narrowing. Further, oxytocin levels are detectable in bronchoalveolar lavage (BAL fluid derived from healthy subjects as well as from those with asthma. Conclusion Taken together, we show that cytokines modulate the expression of functional oxytocin receptors in HASMCs suggesting a

  18. Intranasal administration of oxytocin increases envy and schadenfreude (gloating).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shamay-Tsoory, Simone G; Fischer, Meytal; Dvash, Jonathan; Harari, Hagai; Perach-Bloom, Nufar; Levkovitz, Yechiel

    2009-11-01

    Humans have a strong social tendency to compare themselves with others. We tend to feel envious when we receive less valuable rewards and may rejoice when our payoffs are more advantageous. Envy and schadenfreude (gloating over the other's misfortune) are social emotions widely agreed to be a symptom of the human social tendency to compare one's payoffs with those of others. Given the important social components of envy and gloating, we speculated that oxytocin may have a modulating effect on the intensity of these emotions. Fifty-six participants participated in this double-blind, placebo-controlled, within-subject study. Following the administration of oxytocin or a placebo, participants played a game of chance with another (fake) participant who either won more money (envy manipulation), lost more money (schadenfreude manipulation), or won/lost equal amounts of money. In comparison with the placebo, oxytocin increased the envy ratings during unequal monetary gain conditions involving relative loss (when the participant gained less money than another player). Oxytocin also increased the ratings of gloating during relative gain conditions (when the participant gained more money than the other player). By contrast, oxytocin had no effect on the emotional ratings following equal monetary gains nor did it affect general mood ratings. These results suggest that the oxytocinergic system is involved in modulating envy and gloating. Thus, contrary to the prevailing belief that this system is involved solely in positive prosocial behaviors, it probably plays a key role in a wider range of social emotion-related behaviors.

  19. Aspergillus fumigatus Trehalose-Regulatory Subunit Homolog Moonlights To Mediate Cell Wall Homeostasis through Modulation of Chitin Synthase Activity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Arsa Thammahong

    2017-04-01

    Full Text Available Trehalose biosynthesis is found in fungi but not humans. Proteins involved in trehalose biosynthesis are essential for fungal pathogen virulence in humans and plants through multiple mechanisms. Loss of canonical trehalose biosynthesis genes in the human pathogen Aspergillus fumigatus significantly alters cell wall structure and integrity, though the mechanistic link between these virulence-associated pathways remains enigmatic. Here we characterize genes, called tslA and tslB, which encode proteins that contain domains similar to those corresponding to trehalose-6-phosphate phosphatase but lack critical catalytic residues for phosphatase activity. Loss of tslA reduces trehalose content in both conidia and mycelia, impairs cell wall integrity, and significantly alters cell wall structure. To gain mechanistic insights into the role that TslA plays in cell wall homeostasis, immunoprecipitation assays coupled with liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS were used to reveal a direct interaction between TslA and CsmA, a type V chitin synthase enzyme. TslA regulates not only chitin synthase activity but also CsmA sub-cellular localization. Loss of TslA impacts the immunopathogenesis of murine invasive pulmonary aspergillosis through altering cytokine production and immune cell recruitment. In conclusion, our data provide a novel model whereby proteins in the trehalose pathway play a direct role in fungal cell wall homeostasis and consequently impact fungus-host interactions.

  20. Oxytocin makes females, but not males, less forgiving following betrayal of trust.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yao, Shuxia; Zhao, Weihua; Cheng, Rui; Geng, Yayuan; Luo, Lizhu; Kendrick, Keith M

    2014-11-01

    Although oxytocin has been shown to enhance trust behavior, to date no study has directly established whether oxytocin can modulate the effect of repair strategies on restoring damaged trust. In the current double-blind, between-subjects, placebo-controlled design study, two repair strategies were used to examine the effect of intranasal oxytocin administration on modulating trust restoration in a revised trust game. The results showed that although oxytocin had no overall effect on modulating trust restoration, it did have a significant gender specific effect. Female subjects showed less evidence for trust repair in the oxytocin compared with the placebo treatment group. This suggests that oxytocin may make female subjects exhibit more punitive behavior towards partners who violate their trust and less sensitive to repair strategies provided by them. Interestingly, this gender specific effect was more evident in the context of attempted trust repair using financial compensation. However, it also extended to both apology alone and no compensation conditions, but not to the fair one, in females exhibiting high trait forgiveness. Thus females with a more forgiving attitude towards betrayal may actually be more likely to punish betrayal following oxytocin treatment.

  1. Oxytocin and social functioning

    OpenAIRE

    Jones, Candace; Barrera, Ingrid; Brothers, Shaun; Ring, Robert; Wahlestedt, Claes

    2017-01-01

    Social anxiety is a form of anxiety characterized by continuous fear of one or more social or performance situations. Although multiple treatment modalities (cognitive behavioral therapy, selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors/selective norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors, benzodiazepines) exist for social anxiety, they are effective for only 60% to 70% of patients. Thus, researchers have looked for other candidates for social anxiety treatment. Our review focuses on the peptide oxytocin as a...

  2. Saliva oxytocin measures do not reflect peripheral plasma concentrations after intranasal oxytocin administration in men.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Quintana, Daniel S; Westlye, Lars T; Smerud, Knut T; Mahmoud, Ramy A; Andreassen, Ole A; Djupesland, Per G

    2018-05-16

    Oxytocin plays an important role in social behavior. Thus, there has been significant research interest for the role of the oxytocin system in several psychiatric disorders, and the potential of intranasal oxytocin administration to treat social dysfunction. Measurement of oxytocin concentrations in saliva are sometimes used to approximate peripheral levels of oxytocin; however, the validity of this approach is unclear. In this study, saliva and plasma oxytocin was assessed after two doses of Exhalation Delivery System delivered intranasal oxytocin (8 IU and 24 IU), intravenous oxytocin (1 IU) and placebo in a double-dummy, within-subjects design with men. We found that intranasal oxytocin (8 IU and 24 IU) administration increased saliva oxytocin concentrations in comparison to saliva oxytocin concentration levels after intravenous and placebo administration. Additionally, we found that saliva oxytocin concentrations were not significantly associated with plasma oxytocin concentrations after either intranasal or intravenous oxytocin administration. Altogether, we suggest that saliva oxytocin concentrations do not accurately index peripheral oxytocin after intranasal or intravenous oxytocin administration, at least in men. The data indicates that elevated oxytocin saliva levels after nasal delivery primarily reflect exogenous administered oxytocin that is cleared from the nasal cavity to the oropharynx, and is therefore a weak surrogate for peripheral blood measurements. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  3. The effect of oxytocin on attention to angry and happy faces in chronic depression.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Domes, Gregor; Normann, Claus; Heinrichs, Markus

    2016-04-06

    Chronic depression is characterized by a high degree of early life trauma, psychosocial impairment, and deficits in social cognition. Undisturbed recognition and processing of facial emotions are basic prerequisites for smooth social interactions. Intranasal application of the neuropeptide oxytocin has been reported to enhance emotion recognition in neuropsychiatric disorders and healthy individuals. We therefore investigated whether oxytocin modulates attention to emotional faces in patients with chronic depression. In this double-blind, randomized, controlled study, 43 patients received a single dose of oxytocin or placebo nasal spray and were tested while fulfilling a facial dot probe task. We assessed reaction times to neutral probes presented at the location of one of two faces depicting happy, angry, or neutral expressions as a prime. When comparing reaction times to the congruent (prime and probe at the same location) with incongruent presentation of facial emotions, neither the placebo nor oxytocin group showed an attentional preference for emotional facial expressions in terms of a threat bias. However, oxytocin treatment did reveal two specific effects: it generally reduced the allocation of attention towards angry facial expressions, and it increased sustained attention towards happy faces, specifically under conditions of heightened awareness, i.e. trials with longer primes. We investigated a heterogeneous group of medicated male and female patients. We conclude that oxytocin does modulate basic factors of facial emotion processing in chronic depression. Our findings encourage further investigations assessing the therapeutic potential of oxytocin in chronic depression. EUDRA-CT 2010-020956-69 . Date registered: 23 February 2011.

  4. Platelet-derived growth factor-DD targeting arrests pathological angiogenesis by modulating glycogen synthase kinase-3beta phosphorylation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kumar, Anil; Hou, Xu; Lee, Chunsik; Li, Yang; Maminishkis, Arvydas; Tang, Zhongshu; Zhang, Fan; Langer, Harald F; Arjunan, Pachiappan; Dong, Lijin; Wu, Zhijian; Zhu, Linda Y; Wang, Lianchun; Min, Wang; Colosi, Peter; Chavakis, Triantafyllos; Li, Xuri

    2010-05-14

    Platelet-derived growth factor-DD (PDGF-DD) is a recently discovered member of the PDGF family. The role of PDGF-DD in pathological angiogenesis and the underlying cellular and molecular mechanisms remain largely unexplored. In this study, using different animal models, we showed that PDGF-DD expression was up-regulated during pathological angiogenesis, and inhibition of PDGF-DD suppressed both choroidal and retinal neovascularization. We also demonstrated a novel mechanism mediating the function of PDGF-DD. PDGF-DD induced glycogen synthase kinase-3beta (GSK3beta) Ser(9) phosphorylation and Tyr(216) dephosphorylation in vitro and in vivo, leading to increased cell survival. Consistently, GSK3beta activity was required for the antiangiogenic effect of PDGF-DD targeting. Moreover, PDGF-DD regulated the expression of GSK3beta and many other genes important for angiogenesis and apoptosis. Thus, we identified PDGF-DD as an important target gene for antiangiogenic therapy due to its pleiotropic effects on vascular and non-vascular cells. PDGF-DD inhibition may offer new therapeutic options to treat neovascular diseases.

  5. On the role of oxytocin in borderline personality disorder.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brüne, Martin

    2016-09-01

    Interpersonal dysfunction is central to borderline personality disorder (BPD). Recent research has focused on the role of oxytocin (OT) in BPD, particularly regarding associations of OT activity with symptoms, genetic polymorphisms of the oxytocin receptor coding gene (OXTR) in BPD, and experimental modification of interpersonal core problems of patients with BPD such as hypervigilance towards threat detection, mistrust, and non-verbal behaviour during social interaction by intranasal application of OT. A literature ('medline') review was performed using the keywords 'oxytocin' and 'borderline personality disorder'. Secondary literature on trauma and attachment in relation to OT was also considered relevant. Together, findings suggest that in BPD OT is associated with enhanced defensive mechanisms and avoidance behaviour. Moreover, gene-environment interaction concerning polymorphic variations of the OXTR gene and childhood adversity in BPD suggests that these genes convey developmental flexibility or 'differential susceptibility' to environmental contingencies, whereby BPD resides at the poor outcome end of the spectrum. In view of the conflicting literature, it needs to be studied carefully whether OT can serve as a therapeutic agent given adjunct to psychotherapy in BPD. More research about the role of OT is also required with regard to the prevention of the non-genetic intergenerational transmission of BPD. Clarifying the role of OT in BPD may also benefit from research in non-human animals targeting the interaction between early adversity and OT availability more directly. The study of oxytocin can contribute to the understanding of the neurobiology of borderline personality disorder. Oxytocin is critically involved in attachment security, and methylation of the oxytocin receptor may play a role in the epigenetic modulation of early adversity. The intranasal application of oxytocin may be a useful therapeutic adjunct to psychotherapy. Insecure attachment and

  6. Peripheral administration of oxytocin increases social affiliation in the naked mole-rat (Heterocephalus glaber).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mooney, Skyler J; Douglas, Natasha R; Holmes, Melissa M

    2014-04-01

    The neuropeptide oxytocin regulates a wide variety of social behaviors across diverse species. However, the types of behaviors that are influenced by this hormone are constrained by the species in question and the social organization that a particular species exhibits. Therefore, the present experiments investigated behaviors regulated by oxytocin in a eusocial mammalian species by using the naked mole-rat (Heterocephalus glaber). In Experiment 1, adult non-breeding mole-rats were given intraperitoneal injections of either oxytocin (1mg/kg or 10mg/kg) or saline on alternate days. Animals were then returned to their colony and behavior was recorded for minutes 15-30 post-injection. Both doses of oxytocin increased huddling behavior during this time period. In Experiment 2, animals received intraperitoneal injections of either oxytocin (1mg/kg), an oxytocin-receptor antagonist (0.1mg/kg), a cocktail of oxytocin and the antagonist, or saline across 4 testing days in a counterbalanced design. Animals were placed in either a 2-chamber arena with a familiar conspecific or in a small chamber with 1week old pups from their home colony and behaviors were recorded for minutes 15-30 post-injection. Oxytocin increased investigation of, and time spent in close proximity to, a familiar conspecific; these effects were blocked by the oxytocin antagonist. No effects were seen on pup-directed behavior. These data suggest that oxytocin is capable of modulating affiliative-like behavior in this eusocial species. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  7. Modulation of inducible nitric oxide synthase gene expression in RAW 264.7 murine macrophages by Pacific ciguatoxin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kumar-Roiné, Shilpa; Matsui, Mariko; Chinain, Mireille; Laurent, Dominique; Pauillac, Serge

    2008-08-01

    To investigate the possible involvement of the nitric oxide radical (NO) in ciguatera fish poisoning (CFP), the in vitro effects of the main Pacific ciguatoxin (P-CTX-1B) and bacterial lipopolysaccharide (LPS) were comparatively studied on neuroblastoma Neuro-2a and on macrophage RAW 264.7 cell lines. NO accumulation was quantified by measuring nitrite levels in cellular supernatant using Griess reagent while the up-regulation of inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS) at the mRNA level was quantified via Real-Time Reverse-Transcription Polymerase Chain Reaction (RT-PCR). P-CTX-1B caused a concentration- and time-dependent induction of iNOS in RAW 264.7 cells but not in Neuro-2a cells. NO production was evidenced by increased nitrite levels in the 10 microM range after 48 h of RAW 264.7 cells exposure to LPS and P-CTX-1B (0.05 microg/ml and 6 nM, respectively). The expression of iNOS mRNA peaked at 8h for LPS then gradually decreased to low level at 48 h. In contrast, a sustained level was recorded with P-CTX-1B in the 8-48 h time interval. The addition of N(omega)-nitro-L-arginine methyl ester (L-NAME), a stereoselective NOS inhibitor, strongly diminished NO formation but had no effect on iNOS mRNA synthesis. The implication of NO in CFP paves the way for new therapies for both western and traditional medicines.

  8. Oxytocin signaling in the medial amygdala is required for sex discrimination of social cues

    OpenAIRE

    Yao, Shenqin; Bergan, Joseph; Lanjuin, Anne; Dulac, Catherine

    2017-01-01

    The neural control of social behaviors in rodents requires the encoding of pheromonal cues by the vomeronasal system. Here we show that the typical preference of male mice for females is eliminated in mutants lacking oxytocin, a neuropeptide modulating social behaviors in many species. Ablation of the oxytocin receptor in aromatase-expressing neurons of the medial amygdala (MeA) fully recapitulates the elimination of female preference in males. Further, single-unit recording in the MeA uncove...

  9. Oxytocin Signaling in the Medial Amygdala is required for Sex Discrimination of Social Cues

    OpenAIRE

    Bergan, Joseph; Yao, Shenqin; Lanjuin, Anne; Dulac, Catherine

    2017-01-01

    The neural control of social behaviors in rodents requires the encoding of pheromonal cues by the vomeronasal system. Here we show that the typical preference of male mice for females is eliminated in mutants lacking oxytocin, a neuropeptide modulating social behaviors in many species. Ablation of the oxytocin receptor in aromatase expressing neurons of the medial amygdala (MeA) fully recapitulates the elimination of female preference in males. Further, single unit recording in the MeA uncove...

  10. Amygdala response to negative images in postpartum vs nulliparous women and intranasal oxytocin

    OpenAIRE

    Rupp, Heather A.; James, Thomas W.; Ketterson, Ellen D.; Sengelaub, Dale R.; Ditzen, Beate; Heiman, Julia R.

    2012-01-01

    The neuroendocrine state of new mothers may alter their neural processing of stressors in the environment through modulatory actions of oxytocin on the limbic system. We predicted that amygdala sensitivity to negatively arousing stimuli would be suppressed in postpartum compared to nulliparous women and that this suppression would be modulated by administration of oxytocin nasal spray. We measured brain activation (fMRI) and subjective arousal in response to negatively arousing pictures in 29...

  11. Effects of Intranasal Oxytocin on Aggressive Responding in Antisocial Personality Disorder.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alcorn, Joseph L; Rathnayaka, Nuvan; Swann, Alan C; Moeller, F Gerard; Lane, Scott D

    2015-12-01

    The oxytocin receptor is important in several domains of social behavior, and administration of oxytocin modulates social responding in several mammalian species, including humans. Oxytocin has both therapeutic and scientific potential for elucidating the neural and behavioral mechanisms governing social behavior. In the present study, operationally-defined aggressive behavior of six males with Antisocial Personality Disorder (ASPD) was measured following acute intranasal oxytocin dosing (12, 24, and 48 international units) and placebo, using a well-validated laboratory task of human aggression (Point-Subtraction Aggression Paradigm, or PSAP). The PSAP provides participants with concurrently available monetary-earning and operationally-defined aggressive response options, maintained by fixed ratio schedules of consequences. Shifts in response rates and inter-response time (IRT) distributions were observed on the aggressive response option following oxytocin doses, relative to placebo. Few changes were observed in monetary-reinforced responding. However, across participants the direction and magnitude of changes in aggressive responding were not systematically related to dose. No trends were observed between psychometric or physiological data and oxytocin dosing or aggressive behavior. While this report is to our knowledge the first to examine the acute effects of oxytocin in this population at high risk for violence and other forms of antisocial behavior, several limitations in the experimental design and the results cast the study as a preliminary report. Strategies for more extensive future projects are discussed.

  12. Calcium/calmodulin-dependent kinase II and nitric oxide synthase 1-dependent modulation of ryanodine receptors during β-adrenergic stimulation is restricted to the dyadic cleft.

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    Dries, Eef; Santiago, Demetrio J; Johnson, Daniel M; Gilbert, Guillaume; Holemans, Patricia; Korte, Sanne M; Roderick, H Llewelyn; Sipido, Karin R

    2016-10-15

    The dyadic cleft, where coupled ryanodine receptors (RyRs) reside, is thought to serve as a microdomain for local signalling, as supported by distinct modulation of coupled RyRs dependent on Ca 2+ /calmodulin-dependent kinase II (CaMKII) activation during high-frequency stimulation. Sympathetic stimulation through β-adrenergic receptors activates an integrated signalling cascade, enhancing Ca 2+ cycling and is at least partially mediated through CaMKII. Here we report that CaMKII activation during β-adrenergic signalling is restricted to the dyadic cleft, where it enhances activity of coupled RyRs thereby contributing to the increase in diastolic events. Nitric oxide synthase 1 equally participates in the local modulation of coupled RyRs. In contrast, the increase in the Ca 2+ content of the sarcoplasmic reticulum and related increase in the amplitude of the Ca 2+ transient are primarily protein kinase A-dependent. The present data extend the concept of microdomain signalling in the dyadic cleft and give perspectives for selective modulation of RyR subpopulations and diastolic events. In cardiac myocytes, β-adrenergic stimulation enhances Ca 2+ cycling through an integrated signalling cascade modulating L-type Ca 2+ channels (LTCCs), phospholamban and ryanodine receptors (RyRs). Ca 2+ /calmodulin-dependent kinase II (CaMKII) and nitric oxide synthase 1 (NOS1) are proposed as prime mediators for increasing RyR open probability. We investigate whether this pathway is confined to the high Ca 2+ microdomain of the dyadic cleft and thus to coupled RyRs. Pig ventricular myocytes are studied under whole-cell voltage-clamp and confocal line-scan imaging with Fluo-4 as a [Ca 2+ ] i indicator. Following conditioning depolarizing pulses, spontaneous RyR activity is recorded as Ca 2+ sparks, which are assigned to coupled and non-coupled RyR clusters. Isoproterenol (ISO) (10 nm) increases Ca 2+ spark frequency in both populations of RyRs. However, CaMKII inhibition reduces

  13. Benzalacetone Synthase

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    Ikuro eAbe

    2012-03-01

    Full Text Available Benzalacetone synthase, from the medicinal plant Rheum palmatum (Polygonaceae (RpBAS, is a plant-specific chalcone synthase (CHS superfamily of type III polyketide synthase (PKS. RpBAS catalyzes the one-step, decarboxylative condensation of 4-coumaroyl-CoA with malonyl-CoA to produce the C6-C4 benzalacetone scaffold. The X-ray crystal structures of RpBAS confirmed that the diketide-forming activity is attributable to the characteristic substitution of the conserved active-site "gatekeeper" Phe with Leu. Furthermore, the crystal structures suggested that RpBAS employs novel catalytic machinery for the thioester bond cleavage of the enzyme-bound diketide intermediate and the final decarboxylation reaction to produce benzalacetone. Finally, by exploiting the remarkable substrate tolerance and catalytic versatility of RpBAS, precursor-directed biosynthesis efficiently generated chemically and structurally divergent, unnatural novel polyketide scaffolds. These findings provided a structural basis for the functional diversity of the type III PKS enzymes.

  14. Deciphering the interplay between cysteine synthase and thiol cascade proteins in modulating Amphotericin B resistance and survival of Leishmania donovani under oxidative stress

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    Kuljit Singh

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available Leishmania donovani is the causative organism of the neglected human disease known as visceral leishmaniasis which is often fatal, if left untreated. The cysteine biosynthesis pathway of Leishmania may serve as a potential drug target because it is different from human host and regulates downstream components of redox metabolism of the parasites; essential for their survival, pathogenicity and drug resistance. However, despite the apparent dependency of redox metabolism of cysteine biosynthesis pathway, the role of L. donovani cysteine synthase (LdCS in drug resistance and redox homeostasis has been unexplored. Herein, we report that over-expression of LdCS in Amphotericin B (Amp B sensitive strain (S1-OE modulates resistance towards oxidative stress and drug pressure. We observed that antioxidant enzyme activities were up-regulated in S1-OE parasites and these parasites alleviate intracellular reactive oxygen species (ROS efficiently by maintaining the reduced thiol pool. In contrast to S1-OE parasites, Amp B sensitive strain (S1 showed higher levels of ROS which was positively correlated with the protein carbonylation levels and negatively correlated with cell viability. Moreover, further investigations showed that LdCS over-expression also augments the ROS-primed induction of LdCS-GFP as well as endogenous LdCS and thiol pathway proteins (LdTryS, LdTryR and LdcTXN in L. donovani parasites; which probably aids in stress tolerance and drug resistance. In addition, the expression of LdCS was found to be up-regulated in Amp B resistant isolates and during infective stationary stages of growth and consistent with these observations, our ex vivo infectivity studies confirmed that LdCS over-expression enhances the infectivity of L. donovani parasites. Our results reveal a novel crosstalk between LdCS and thiol metabolic pathway proteins and demonstrate the crucial role of LdCS in drug resistance and redox homeostasis of Leishmania. Keywords

  15. Functional Layer-by-Layer Thin Films of Inducible Nitric Oxide (NO) Synthase Oxygenase and Polyethylenimine: Modulation of Enzyme Loading and NO-Release Activity.

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    Gunasekera, Bhagya; Abou Diwan, Charbel; Altawallbeh, Ghaith; Kalil, Haitham; Maher, Shaimaa; Xu, Song; Bayachou, Mekki

    2018-03-07

    Nitric oxide (NO) release counteracts platelet aggregation and prevents the thrombosis cascade in the inner walls of blood vessels. NO-release coatings also prevent thrombus formation on the surface of blood-contacting medical devices. Our previous work has shown that inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS) films release NO fluxes upon enzymatic conversion of the substrate l-arginine. In this work, we report on the modulation of enzyme loading in layer-by-layer (LbL) thin films of inducible nitric oxide synthase oxygenase (iNOSoxy) on polyethylenimine (PEI). The layer of iNOSoxy is electrostatically adsorbed onto the PEI layer. The pH of the iNOSoxy solution affects the amount of enzyme adsorbed. The overall negative surface charge of iNOSoxy in solution depends on the pH and hence determines the density of adsorbed protein on the positively charged PEI layer. We used buffered iNOSoxy solutions adjusted to pHs 8.6 and 7.0, while saline PEI solution was used at pH 7.0. Atomic force microscopy imaging of the outermost layer shows higher protein adsorption with iNOSoxy at pH 8.6 than with a solution of iNOSoxy at pH 7.0. Graphite electrodes with PEI/iNOSoxy films show higher catalytic currents for nitric oxide reduction mediated by iNOSoxy. The higher enzyme loading translates into higher NO flux when the enzyme-modified surface is exposed to a solution containing the substrate and a source of electrons. Spectrophotometric assays showed higher NO fluxes with iNOSoxy/PEI films built at pH 8.6 than with films built at pH 7.0. Fourier transform infrared analysis of iNOSoxy adsorbed on PEI at pH 8.6 and 7.0 shows structural differences of iNOSoxy in films, which explains the observed changes in enzymatic activity. Our findings show that pH provides a strategy to optimize the NOS loading and enzyme activity in NOS-based LbL thin films, which enables improved NO release with minimum layers of PEI/NOS.

  16. No laughing matter: intranasal oxytocin administration changes functional brain connectivity during exposure to infant laughter.

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    Riem, Madelon M E; van IJzendoorn, Marinus H; Tops, Mattie; Boksem, Maarten A S; Rombouts, Serge A R B; Bakermans-Kranenburg, Marian J

    2012-04-01

    Infant laughter is a rewarding experience. It activates neural reward circuits and promotes parental proximity and care, thus facilitating parent-infant attachment. The neuropeptide oxytocin might enhance the incentive salience of infant laughter by modulating neural circuits related to the perception of infant cues. In a randomized controlled trial with functional magnetic resonance imaging we investigated the influence of intranasally administered oxytocin on functional brain connectivity in response to infant laughter. Blood oxygenation level-dependent responses to infant laughter were measured in 22 nulliparous women who were administered oxytocin and 20 nulliparous women who were administered a placebo. Elevated oxytocin levels reduced activation in the amygdala during infant laughter and enhanced functional connectivity between the amygdala and the orbitofrontal cortex, the anterior cingulate, the hippocampus, the precuneus, the supramarginal gyri, and the middle temporal gyrus. Increased functional connectivity between the amygdala and regions involved in emotion regulation may reduce negative emotional arousal while enhancing the incentive salience of the infant laughter.

  17. Oxytocin and vasopressin neural networks: Implications for social behavioral diversity and translational neuroscience.

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    Johnson, Zachary V; Young, Larry J

    2017-05-01

    Oxytocin- and vasopressin-related systems are present in invertebrate and vertebrate bilaterian animals, including humans, and exhibit conserved neuroanatomical and functional properties. In vertebrates, these systems innervate conserved neural networks that regulate social learning and behavior, including conspecific recognition, social attachment, and parental behavior. Individual and species-level variation in central organization of oxytocin and vasopressin systems has been linked to individual and species variation in social learning and behavior. In humans, genetic polymorphisms in the genes encoding oxytocin and vasopressin peptides and/or their respective target receptors have been associated with individual variation in social recognition, social attachment phenotypes, parental behavior, and psychiatric phenotypes such as autism. Here we describe both conserved and variable features of central oxytocin and vasopressin systems in the context of social behavioral diversity, with a particular focus on neural networks that modulate social learning, behavior, and salience of sociosensory stimuli during species-typical social contexts. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  18. The Involvement of Oxytocin in the Subthalamic Nucleus on Relapse to Methamphetamine-Seeking Behaviour.

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    Sarah Jane Baracz

    Full Text Available The psychostimulant methamphetamine (METH is an addictive drug of abuse. The neuropeptide oxytocin has been shown to modulate METH-related reward and METH-seeking behaviour. Recent findings implicated the subthalamic nucleus (STh as a key brain region in oxytocin modulation of METH-induced reward. However, it is unclear if oxytocin acts in this region to attenuate relapse to METH-seeking behaviour, and if this action is through the oxytocin receptor. We aimed to determine whether oxytocin pretreatment administered into the STh would reduce reinstatement to METH use in rats experienced at METH self-administration, and if this could be reversed by the co-administration of the oxytocin receptor antagonist desGly-NH2,d(CH25[D-Tyr2,Thr4]OVT. Male Sprague Dawley rats underwent surgery to implant an intravenous jugular vein catheter and bilateral microinjection cannulae into the STh under isoflourane anaesthesia. Rats were then trained to self-administer intravenous METH (0.1 mg/kg/infusion by lever press during 2-hour sessions under a fixed ratio 1 schedule for 20 days. Following extinction of lever press activity, the effect of microinjecting saline, oxytocin (0.2 pmol, 0.6 pmol, 1.8 pmol, 3.6 pmol or co-administration of oxytocin (3.6 pmol and desGly-NH2,d(CH25[D-Tyr2,Thr4]OVT (3 nmol into the STh (200 nl/side was examined on METH-primed reinstatement (1 mg/kg; i.p.. We found that local administration of the highest oxytocin dose (3.6 pmol into the STh decreased METH-induced reinstatement and desGly-NH2,d(CH25[D-Tyr2,Thr4]OVT had a non-specific effect on lever press activity. These findings highlight that oxytocin modulation of the STh is an important modulator of relapse to METH abuse.

  19. Newborn Analgesia Mediated by Oxytocin during Delivery

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    Mazzuca, Michel; Minlebaev, Marat; Shakirzyanova, Anastasia; Tyzio, Roman; Taccola, Giuliano; Janackova, Sona; Gataullina, Svetlana; Ben-Ari, Yehezkel; Giniatullin, Rashid; Khazipov, Rustem

    2011-01-01

    The mechanisms controlling pain in newborns during delivery are poorly understood. We explored the hypothesis that oxytocin, an essential hormone for labor and a powerful neuromodulator, exerts analgesic actions on newborns during delivery. Using a thermal tail-flick assay, we report that pain sensitivity is two-fold lower in rat pups immediately after birth than 2 days later. Oxytocin receptor antagonists strongly enhanced pain sensitivity in newborn, but not in 2-day-old rats, whereas oxytocin reduced pain at both ages suggesting an endogenous analgesia by oxytocin during delivery. Similar analgesic effects of oxytocin, measured as attenuation of pain-vocalization induced by electrical whisker pad stimulation, were also observed in decerebrated newborns. Oxytocin reduced GABA-evoked calcium responses and depolarizing GABA driving force in isolated neonatal trigeminal neurons suggesting that oxytocin effects are mediated by alterations of intracellular chloride. Unlike GABA signaling, oxytocin did not affect responses mediated by P2X3 and TRPV1 receptors. In keeping with a GABAergic mechanism, reduction of intracellular chloride by the diuretic NKCC1 chloride co-transporter antagonist bumetanide mimicked the analgesic actions of oxytocin and its effects on GABA responses in nociceptive neurons. Therefore, endogenous oxytocin exerts an analgesic action in newborn pups that involves a reduction of the depolarizing action of GABA on nociceptive neurons. Therefore, the same hormone that triggers delivery also acts as a natural pain killer revealing a novel facet of the protective actions of oxytocin in the fetus at birth. PMID:21519396

  20. Oxytocin and Serotonin Brain Mechanisms in the Nonhuman Primate.

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    Lefevre, Arthur; Richard, Nathalie; Jazayeri, Mina; Beuriat, Pierre-Aurélien; Fieux, Sylvain; Zimmer, Luc; Duhamel, Jean-René; Sirigu, Angela

    2017-07-12

    strategy is to study the interaction between these systems. Here we depict the interplay between oxytocin and serotonin in the nonhuman primate brain. We found that oxytocin provokes the release of serotonin, which in turn impacts on the serotonin 1A receptor system, by modulating its availability. This happens in several key brain regions for social behavior, such as the amygdala and insula. This novel finding can open ways to advance treatments where drugs are combined to influence several neurotransmission networks. Copyright © 2017 the authors 0270-6474/17/376741-10$15.00/0.

  1. Oxytocin and Aggression.

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    de Jong, Trynke R; Neumann, Inga D

    2017-09-02

    The neuropeptide oxytocin (OT) has a solid reputation as a facilitator of social interactions such as parental and pair bonding, trust, and empathy. The many results supporting a pro-social role of OT have generated the hypothesis that impairments in the endogenous OT system may lead to antisocial behavior, most notably social withdrawal or pathological aggression. If this is indeed the case, administration of exogenous OT could be the "serenic" treatment that psychiatrists have for decades been searching for.In the present review, we list and discuss the evidence for an endogenous "hypo-oxytocinergic state" underlying aggressive and antisocial behavior, derived from both animal and human studies. We furthermore examine the reported effects of synthetic OT administration on aggression in rodents and humans.Although the scientific findings listed in this review support, in broad lines, the link between a down-regulated or impaired OT system activity and increased aggression, the anti-aggressive effects of synthetic OT are less straightforward and require further research. The rather complex picture that emerges adds to the ongoing debate questioning the unidirectional pro-social role of OT, as well as the strength of the effects of intranasal OT administration in humans.

  2. As time goes by: Oxytocin influences the subjective perception of time in a social context.

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    Colonnello, Valentina; Domes, Gregor; Heinrichs, Markus

    2016-06-01

    Time perception depends on an event's emotional relevance to the beholder; a subjective time dilation effect is associated with self-relevant, emotionally salient stimuli. Previous studies have revealed that oxytocin modulates the salience of social stimuli and attention to social cues. However, whether the oxytocin system is involved in human subjective time perception is unknown. The aim of the present study was to investigate whether increased oxytocin levels would induce a time dilation effect for self-relevant, positive social cues. In a double-blind, placebo-controlled, between-subject design, heterosexual men were administered intranasal oxytocin or placebo. After about 50min, participants completed a time-bisection task in which they estimated lengths of exposure to happy female faces (self-relevant positive stimuli, based on sexual orientation), emotionally neutral and negative female faces (control), and happy, neutral, and negative male faces (control). Oxytocin induced a subjective time dilation effect for happy female faces and a time compression effect for happy male faces. Our results provide evidence that oxytocin influences time perception, a primary form of human subjectivity. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  3. Oxytocin administration suppresses hypothalamic activation in response to visual food cues.

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    van der Klaauw, Agatha A; Ziauddeen, Hisham; Keogh, Julia M; Henning, Elana; Dachi, Sekesai; Fletcher, Paul C; Farooqi, I Sadaf

    2017-06-27

    The aim of this study was to use functional neuroimaging to investigate whether oxytocin modulates the neural response to visual food cues in brain regions involved in the control of food intake. Twenty-four normal weight volunteers received intranasal oxytocin (24 IU) or placebo in a double-blind, randomized crossover study. Measurements were made forty-five minutes after dosing. On two occasions, functional MRI (fMRI) scans were performed in the fasted state; the blood oxygen level-dependent (BOLD) response to images of high-calorie foods versus low-calorie foods was measured. Given its critical role in eating behaviour, the primary region of interest was the hypothalamus. Secondary analyses examined the parabrachial nuclei and other brain regions involved in food intake and food reward. Intranasal oxytocin administration suppressed hypothalamic activation to images of high-calorie compared to low-calorie food (P = 0.0125). There was also a trend towards suppression of activation in the parabrachial nucleus (P = 0.0683). No effects of intranasal oxytocin were seen in reward circuits or on ad libitum food intake. Further characterization of the effects of oxytocin on neural circuits in the hypothalamus is needed to establish the utility of targeting oxytocin signalling in obesity.

  4. Pupil-mimicry conditions trust in partners: moderation by oxytocin and group membership.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kret, Mariska E; De Dreu, Carsten K W

    2017-03-15

    Across species, oxytocin, an evolutionarily ancient neuropeptide, facilitates social communication by attuning individuals to conspecifics' social signals, fostering trust and bonding. The eyes have an important signalling function; and humans use their salient and communicative eyes to intentionally and unintentionally send social signals to others, by contracting the muscles around their eyes and pupils. In our earlier research, we observed that interaction partners with dilating pupils are trusted more than partners with constricting pupils. But over and beyond this effect, we found that the pupil sizes of partners synchronize and that when pupils synchronously dilate, trust is further boosted. Critically, this linkage between mimicry and trust was bound to interactions between ingroup members. The current study investigates whether these findings are modulated by oxytocin and sex of participant and partner. Using incentivized trust games with partners from ingroup and outgroup whose pupils dilated, remained static or constricted, this study replicates our earlier findings. It further reveals that (i) male participants withhold trust from partners with constricting pupils and extend trust to partners with dilating pupils, especially when given oxytocin rather than placebo; (ii) female participants trust partners with dilating pupils most, but this effect is blunted under oxytocin; (iii) under oxytocin rather than placebo, pupil dilation mimicry is weaker and pupil constriction mimicry stronger; and (iv) the link between pupil constriction mimicry and distrust observed under placebo disappears under oxytocin. We suggest that pupil-contingent trust is parochial and evolved in social species in and because of group life. © 2017 The Authors.

  5. Changes in social functioning and circulating oxytocin and vasopressin following the migration to a new country.

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    Gouin, Jean-Philippe; Pournajafi-Nazarloo, Hossein; Carter, C Sue

    2015-02-01

    Prior studies have reported associations between plasma oxytocin and vasopressin and markers of social functioning. However, because most human studies have used cross-sectional designs, it is unclear whether plasma oxytocin and vasopressin influences social functioning or whether social functioning modulates the production and peripheral release of these peptides. In order to address this question, we followed individuals who experienced major changes in social functioning subsequent to the migration to a new country. In this study, 59 new international students were recruited shortly after arrival in the host country and reassessed 2 and 5 months later. At each assessment participants provided information on their current social functioning and blood samples for oxytocin and vasopressin analysis. Results indicated that changes in social functioning were not related to changes in plasma oxytocin. Instead, baseline oxytocin predicted changes in social relationship satisfaction, social support, and loneliness over time. In contrast, plasma vasopressin changed as a function of social integration. Baseline vasopressin was not related to changes in social functioning over time. These results emphasize the different roles of plasma oxytocin and vasopressin in responses to changes in social functioning in humans. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  6. Emergent synchronous bursting of oxytocin neuronal network.

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    Enrico Rossoni

    2008-07-01

    Full Text Available When young suckle, they are rewarded intermittently with a let-down of milk that results from reflex secretion of the hormone oxytocin; without oxytocin, newly born young will die unless they are fostered. Oxytocin is made by magnocellular hypothalamic neurons, and is secreted from their nerve endings in the pituitary in response to action potentials (spikes that are generated in the cell bodies and which are propagated down their axons to the nerve endings. Normally, oxytocin cells discharge asynchronously at 1-3 spikes/s, but during suckling, every 5 min or so, each discharges a brief, intense burst of spikes that release a pulse of oxytocin into the circulation. This reflex was the first, and is perhaps the best, example of a physiological role for peptide-mediated communication within the brain: it is coordinated by the release of oxytocin from the dendrites of oxytocin cells; it can be facilitated by injection of tiny amounts of oxytocin into the hypothalamus, and it can be blocked by injection of tiny amounts of oxytocin antagonist. Here we show how synchronized bursting can arise in a neuronal network model that incorporates basic observations of the physiology of oxytocin cells. In our model, bursting is an emergent behaviour of a complex system, involving both positive and negative feedbacks, between many sparsely connected cells. The oxytocin cells are regulated by independent afferent inputs, but they interact by local release of oxytocin and endocannabinoids. Oxytocin released from the dendrites of these cells has a positive-feedback effect, while endocannabinoids have an inhibitory effect by suppressing the afferent input to the cells.

  7. Nasal Oxytocin Treatment Biases Dogs’ Visual Attention and Emotional Response toward Positive Human Facial Expressions

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    Sanni Somppi

    2017-10-01

    study provides further support for the role of the oxytocinergic system in the social perception abilities of domestic dogs. We propose that oxytocin modulates fundamental emotional processing in dogs through a mechanism that may facilitate communication between humans and dogs.

  8. Social support, oxytocin, and PTSD

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Olff, Miranda; Koch, Saskia B. J.; Nawijn, Laura; Frijling, Jessie L.; van Zuiden, Mirjam; Veltman, Dick J.

    2014-01-01

    A lack of social support and recognition by the environment is one of the most consistent risk factors for posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and PTSD patients will recover faster with proper social support. The oxytocin system has been proposed to underlie beneficial effects of social support as

  9. Inverse Effects of Oxytocin on Attributing Mental Activity to Others in Depressed and Healthy Subjects: A Double-Blind Placebo Controlled fMRI Study.

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    David Pincus

    2010-10-01

    Full Text Available Background: Oxytocin is a stress-attenuating and pro-social neuropeptide. To date, no study has looked at the effects of oxytocin in modulating brain activity in depressed individuals nor attempted to correlate this activity with attribution of mental activity in others. Method: We enrolled 10 unmedicated depressed adults and 10 matched healthy controls in a crossover, double blind placebo controlled fmri 40 i.u. intra-nasal oxytocin study (20 i.u. per nostril. Each subject performed Reading the Mind in the Eyes task (RMET before and after inhalation of oxytocin or placebo control for a total of 80 scans. Results: Before oxytocin administration, RMET engaged medial and lateral prefrontal cortex, amygdala, insula and associative areas. Depressed subjects showed increased anterior ventral activation for the RMET minus gender identification contrast whereas matched controls showed increased dorsal and frontal activity. Compared to placebo, oxytocin in depressed subjects showed increased activity in the superior middle frontal gyrus and insula, while controls exhibited more activity in ventral regions. Oxytocin also led to inverse effects in reaction times on attribution task between groups, with controls getting faster and depressed individuals slower to respond. Conclusion: Depression is associated with increased paralimbic activity during emotional mental attribution of others, appearing to be distinctly modulated by oxytocin when compared to healthy controls. Further studies are needed to explore long-term exposure to pro-social neuropeptides on mood in depressed populations and assess their clinical relevance.

  10. Centrally-administered oxytocin promotes preference for familiar objects at a short delay in ovariectomized female rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Madularu, Dan; Athanassiou, Maria; Yee, Jason R; Mumby, Dave G

    2014-11-01

    Oxytocin has been previously associated with social attachment behaviors in various species, however, most studies focused on partner preference in the socially-monogamous prairie vole. In these, oxytocin treatment was shown to promote partner preference, such that females receiving either central or pulsatile peripheral administration would spend more time with a familiar male. This behavioral outcome was blocked by oxytocin receptor antagonist treatment. The aim of the current study was to further explore the preference-inducing properties of oxytocin by examining its effects on object preference on ovariectomized female rats. In other words, we assessed whether these effects would apply to objects and if they would be persistent across species. Eight rats were infused with oxytocin into the left ventricle and object preference was assessed at two delays: 30min and 4h. At the 30min delay, oxytocin-treated animals showed preference for the familiar object, whereas saline-treated controls exhibited preference for the novel object. At the 4h delay, both groups showed novel-object preference. Our findings show that oxytocin modulates object preference in the female rat at a shorter delay, similar to the findings from partner-preference studies in the prairie vole, suggesting that the mechanisms driving object preference might be in part similar to those responsible for partner preference. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  11. The association between oxytocin and social capital.

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    Takeo Fujiwara

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Oxytocin is known to be related to social behaviors, including trust. However, few studies have investigated the association between oxytocin levels and social capital. Thus, we tested the hypothesis that endogenous oxytocin levels are positively associated with social capital. We also considered whether the association differed across gender because previous studies have shown differential effects of OT on social behaviors depending on gender. METHODS: We recruited a convenience sample of 50 women and 31 men in Japan via community sampling from whom we obtained urine sample with which to measure oxytocin levels. Individual-level cognitive social capital (social trust and mutual aid and structural social capital (community participation were assessed using a questionnaire. We used multivariate regression, adjusted for covariates (age, number of children, self-rated health, and education, and stratified by gender to consider associations between oxytocin and social capital. RESULTS: Among women, oxytocin was inversely associated with social trust and mutual aid (p<0.05. However, women participating in only 1 organization in the community showed higher oxytocin than women who participated in either no organizations (p<0.05 or 2 or more organization (i.e. inverse-U shape association. Among men, no association was observed between oxytocin and either form of cognitive and structural social capital. CONCLUSION: Women who perceived low cognitive social capital showed higher oxytocin levels, while structural social capital showed inverse-U shape association with oxytocin. No association between oxytocin and social capital was found among men. Further study is needed to elucidate why oxytocin was inversely associated with cognitive social capital only among women.

  12. Oxytocin and potential benefits for obesity treatment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Olszewski, Pawel K; Klockars, Anica; Levine, Allen S

    2017-10-01

    Laboratory animal experiments have consistently shown that oxytocin causes early termination of food intake, thereby promoting a decrease in body weight in a long term. Recent studies have also assessed some of oxytocin's effects on appetite and energy balance in humans. The present study examines the findings of the key basic research and of the few clinical studies published thus far in the context of potential benefits and challenges stemming from the use of oxytocin in obese patients. Basic research indicates the involvement of oxytocin in satiety, processing, in reducing a drive to eat for pleasure and because of psychosocial factors. Although the results of clinical studies are very scarce, they suggest that oxytocin administered intranasally in humans decreases energy-induced and reward-induced eating, supports cognitive control of food choices, and improves glucose homeostasis, and its effectiveness may be BMI dependent. Despite the wealth of basic research showing broad anorexigenic effects of oxytocin, clinical studies on oxytocin's therapeutic potential in obesity, are still in their infancy. Future implementation of oxytocin-based pharmacological strategies in controlling energy balance will likely depend on our ability to integrate diverse behavioral and metabolic effects of oxytocin in obesity treatment regimens.

  13. Oxytocin modulates trait-based rule following

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Gross, J.; de Dreu, C.K.W.

    Rules, whether in the form of norms, taboos or laws, regulate and coordinate human life. Some rules, however, are arbitrary and adhering to them can be personally costly. Rigidly sticking to such rules can be considered maladaptive. Here, we test whether, at the neurobiological level, (mal)adaptive

  14. Oxytocin decreases sweet taste sensitivity in mice.

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    Sinclair, Michael S; Perea-Martinez, Isabel; Abouyared, Marianne; St John, Steven J; Chaudhari, Nirupa

    2015-03-15

    Oxytocin (OXT) suppresses food intake and lack of OXT leads to overconsumption of sucrose. Taste bud cells were recently discovered to express OXT-receptor. In the present study we tested whether administering OXT to wild-type mice affects their licking behavior for tastants in a paradigm designed to be sensitive to taste perception. We injected C57BL/6J mice intraperitoneally (i.p.) with 10mg/kg OXT and assayed their brief-access lick responses, motivated by water deprivation, to NaCl (300mM), citric acid (20mM), quinine (0.3mM), saccharin (10mM), and a mix of MSG and IMP (100mM and 0.5mM respectively). OXT had no effect on licking for NaCl, citric acid, or quinine. A possible effect of OXT on saccharin and MSG+IMP was difficult to interpret due to unexpectedly low lick rates to water (the vehicle for all taste solutions), likely caused by the use of a high OXT dose that suppressed licking and other behaviors. A subsequent experiment focused on another preferred tastant, sucrose, and employed a much lower OXT dose (0.1mg/kg). This modification, based on our measurements of plasma OXT following i.p. injection, permitted us to elevate plasma [OXT] sufficiently to preferentially activate taste bud cells. OXT at this low dose significantly reduced licking responses to 0.3M sucrose, and overall shifted the sucrose concentration - behavioral response curves rightward (mean EC50saline=0.362M vs. EC50OXT=0.466M). Males did not differ from females under any condition in this study. We propose that circulating oxytocin is another factor that modulates taste-based behavior. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  15. Oxytocin determination by radioimmunoassay in cattle. 1

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Schams, D.; Schmidt-Polex, B.; Kruse, V.

    1979-01-01

    A radioimmunoassay for oxytocin in cow plasma is described. Antisera were raised in rabbits against synthetic oxytocin coupled to bovine thyroglobulin. Iodinated oxytocin free of unlabelled oxytocin and most likely also free of diiodo-oxytocin was used as radioactive tracer. The tracer showed a high degree of purity, and was stable on storage. It could be used in the assay for 2-3 months. The assay showed very little cross-reactivity with vasopressin. Acetone was used for the extraction of oxytocin from plasma as well as from standards made of synthetic exytocin in pooled cow plasma. Inhibition curves obtained with plasma collected from cows at parturition were parallel to those obtained with the oxytocin standard preparation. The mean recovery of oxytocin added to cow plasma was 106% (SD=14). The within-assay coefficient of variation (CV) varied from 5.2 to 10.9%, and the between-assay CV was in the order of 13%. The assay sensitivity was 1 pg (0.5 μU) per tube, corresponding to 3 pg/ml plasma. Around the time of milking the plasma oxytocin profile showed a strong response to the preparation for milking, and a further effect related to the attachment of the teat cups of the milking machine. Peak concentrations were in the range of 15-50 pg/ml. During parturition there was a peak of oxytocin (65 pg/ml) coinciding with the expulsion phase. After this peak levels decreased by remained measurably elevated until the expulsion of the placenta. The plasma disappearance curve for immunoreactive oxutocin after the infusion of 100 IU oxytocin over a period of 1 h showed two components with apparent half-lives of 7-9 and 25 min, respectively. (author)

  16. The effect of oxytocin on biological motion perception in dogs (Canis familiaris).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kovács, Krisztina; Kis, Anna; Kanizsár, Orsolya; Hernádi, Anna; Gácsi, Márta; Topál, József

    2016-05-01

    Recent studies have shown that the neuropeptide oxytocin is involved in the regulation of several complex human social behaviours. There is, however, little research on the effect of oxytocin on basic mechanisms underlying human sociality, such as the perception of biological motion. In the present study, we investigated the effect of oxytocin on biological motion perception in dogs (Canis familiaris), a species adapted to the human social environment and thus widely used to model many aspects of human social behaviour. In a within-subjects design, dogs (N = 39), after having received either oxytocin or placebo treatment, were presented with 2D projection of a moving point-light human figure and the inverted and scrambled version of the same movie. Heart rate (HR) and heart rate variability (HRV) were measured as physiological responses, and behavioural response was evaluated by observing dogs' looking time. Subjects were also rated on the personality traits of Neuroticism and Agreeableness by their owners. As expected, placebo-pretreated (control) dogs showed a spontaneous preference for the biological motion pattern; however, there was no such preference after oxytocin pretreatment. Furthermore, following the oxytocin pretreatment female subjects looked more at the moving point-light figure than males. The individual variations along the dimensions of Agreeableness and Neuroticism also modulated dogs' behaviour. Furthermore, HR and HRV measures were affected by oxytocin treatment and in turn played a role in subjects' looking behaviour. We discuss how these findings contribute to our understanding of the neurohormonal regulatory mechanisms of human (and non-human) social skills.

  17. Oxytocin biotransformation in the rat limbic brain

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Burbach, J.P.H.; Schotman, P.; Kloet, E.R. de

    2006-01-01

    Two peptide fragments of oxytocin were isolated by high-pressure liquid chromatography from digests of oxytocin obtained after exposure to a SPM preparation of the rat limbic brain. The structures of these peptides, being Gln-Asn-Cys(O)x-Pro-Leu-GlyNH2 and Gln-Asn-Cys(-S-S-Cys)-Pro-Leu-GlyNH2, were

  18. Neonatal oxytocin and vasopressin manipulation alter social behavior during the juvenile period in Mongolian gerbils.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Taylor, Jack H; Cavanaugh, Jon; French, Jeffrey A

    2017-07-01

    Oxytocin and vasopressin are important modulators of a wide variety of social behaviors, and increasing evidence is showing that these neuropeptides are important organizational effectors of later-life behavior as well. We treated day-old gerbil pups with oxytocin, vasopressin, an oxytocin receptor antagonist, a vasopressin V1a receptor antagonist, or saline control, and then measured received parental responsiveness during the early postnatal period and juvenile social behavior during weaning. Neonatal vasopressin treatment enhanced sociality in males, but not females, at both developmental time points. When pups were individually placed outside the nest, parents were more responsive to male pups treated with vasopressin compared with littermates, and vasopressin treated male pups exhibited increased play with littermates as juveniles. These results show that vasopressin during very early life can enhance social interactions throughout early development. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  19. Amygdala response to negative images in postpartum vs nulliparous women and intranasal oxytocin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rupp, Heather A; James, Thomas W; Ketterson, Ellen D; Sengelaub, Dale R; Ditzen, Beate; Heiman, Julia R

    2014-01-01

    The neuroendocrine state of new mothers may alter their neural processing of stressors in the environment through modulatory actions of oxytocin on the limbic system. We predicted that amygdala sensitivity to negatively arousing stimuli would be suppressed in postpartum compared to nulliparous women and that this suppression would be modulated by administration of oxytocin nasal spray. We measured brain activation (fMRI) and subjective arousal in response to negatively arousing pictures in 29 postpartum and 30 nulliparous women who received either oxytocin nasal spray or placebo before scanning. Pre- and post-exposure urinary cortisol levels were also measured. Postpartum women (placebo) demonstrated lower right amygdala activation in response to negative images, lower cortisol and lower negative photo arousal ratings to nulliparous women. Nulliparous women receiving oxytocin had lower right amygdala activation compared to placebo. Cortisol levels in the placebo group, and ratings of arousal across all women, were positively associated with right amygdala activation. Together, these findings demonstrate reductions in both amygdala activation and subjective negative arousal in untreated postpartum vs nulliparous women, supporting the hypothesis of an attenuated neural response to arousing stimuli in postpartum women. A causal role of oxytocin and the timing of potential effects require future investigation.

  20. Genetic Imaging of the Association of Oxytocin Receptor Gene (OXTR Polymorphisms with Positive Maternal Parenting

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kalina J. Michalska

    2014-02-01

    Full Text Available Background: Well-validated models of maternal behavior in small-brain mammals posit a central role of oxytocin in parenting, by reducing stress and enhancing the reward value of social interactions with offspring. In contrast, human studies are only beginning to gain insights into how oxytocin modulates maternal behavior and affiliation. Methods: To explore associations between oxytocin receptor genes and maternal parenting behavior in humans, we conducted a genetic imaging study of women selected to exhibit a wide range of observed parenting when their children were 4-6 years old. Results: In response to child stimuli during functional magnetic resonance imaging, hemodynamic responses in brain regions that mediate affect, reward, and social behavior were significantly correlated with observed positive parenting. Furthermore, single nucleotide polymorphisms (rs53576 and rs1042778 in the gene encoding the oxytocin receptor were significantly associated with both positive parenting and hemodynamic responses to child stimuli in orbitofrontal cortex, anterior cingulate cortex and hippocampus. Conclusions: These findings contribute to the emerging literature on the role of oxytocin in human social behavior and support the feasibility of tracing biological pathways from genes to neural regions to positive maternal parenting behaviors in humans using genetic imaging methods.

  1. Oxytocin Promotes Facial Emotion Recognition and Amygdala Reactivity in Adults with Asperger Syndrome

    Science.gov (United States)

    Domes, Gregor; Kumbier, Ekkehardt; Heinrichs, Markus; Herpertz, Sabine C

    2014-01-01

    The neuropeptide oxytocin has recently been shown to enhance eye gaze and emotion recognition in healthy men. Here, we report a randomized double-blind, placebo-controlled trial that examined the neural and behavioral effects of a single dose of intranasal oxytocin on emotion recognition in individuals with Asperger syndrome (AS), a clinical condition characterized by impaired eye gaze and facial emotion recognition. Using functional magnetic resonance imaging, we examined whether oxytocin would enhance emotion recognition from facial sections of the eye vs the mouth region and modulate regional activity in brain areas associated with face perception in both adults with AS, and a neurotypical control group. Intranasal administration of the neuropeptide oxytocin improved performance in a facial emotion recognition task in individuals with AS. This was linked to increased left amygdala reactivity in response to facial stimuli and increased activity in the neural network involved in social cognition. Our data suggest that the amygdala, together with functionally associated cortical areas mediate the positive effect of oxytocin on social cognitive functioning in AS. PMID:24067301

  2. Oxytocin and Estrogen Receptor β in the Brain: An Overview

    OpenAIRE

    Acevedo-Rodriguez, Alexandra; Mani, Shaila K.; Handa, Robert J.

    2015-01-01

    Oxytocin is a neuropeptide synthesized primarily by neurons of the paraventricular and supraoptic nuclei of the hypothalamus. These neurons have axons that project into the posterior pituitary and release oxytocin into the bloodstream to promote labor and lactation; however, oxytocin neurons also project to other brain areas where it plays a role in numerous brain functions. Oxytocin binds to the widely expressed oxytocin receptor, and, in doing so, it regulates homeostatic processes, social ...

  3. Oxytocin induces penile erection and yawning when injected into the bed nucleus of the stria terminalis: Involvement of glutamic acid, dopamine, and nitric oxide.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sanna, Fabrizio; Bratzu, Jessica; Argiolas, Antonio; Melis, Maria Rosaria

    2017-11-01

    Oxytocin (5-100ng), but not Arg 8 -vasopressin (100ng), injected unilaterally into the bed nucleus of the stria terminalis (BNST) induces penile erection and yawning in a dose-dependent manner in male rats. The minimal effective dose was 20ng for penile erection and 5ng for yawning. Oxytocin responses were abolished not only by the oxytocin receptor antagonist d(CH 2 ) 5 Tyr(Me) 2 -Orn 8 -vasotocin (1μg), but also by (+) MK-801 (1μg), an excitatory amino acid receptor antagonist of the N-methyl-d-aspartic acid (NMDA) subtype, SCH 23390 (1μg), a D1 receptor antagonist, but not haloperidol (1μg), a D2 receptor antagonist, and SMTC (40μg), an inhibitor of neuronal nitric oxide synthase, injected into the BNST 15min before oxytocin. Oxytocin-induced penile erection, but not yawning, was also abolished by CNQX (1μg), an excitatory amino acid receptor antagonist of the AMPA subtype. In contrast, oxytocin responses were not reduced by bicuculline (20ng), a GABA A receptor antagonist, phaclofen (5μg), a GABA B receptor antagonist, CP 376395, a CRF receptor-1 antagonist (5μg), or astressin 2B, a CRF receptor-2 antagonist (150ng). Considering the ability of NMDA (100ng) to induce penile erection and yawning when injected into the BNST and the available evidence showing possible interaction among oxytocin, glutamic acid, and dopamine in the BNST, oxytocin possibly activates glutamatergic neurotransmission in the BNST. This in turn leads to the activation of neural pathways projecting back to the paraventricular nucleus, medial preoptic area, ventral tegmental area, and/or ventral subiculum/amygdala, thereby inducing penile erection and yawning. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  4. Oxytocin determination by radioimmunoassay in cattle. 2

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Schams, D.; Baumann, G.; Leidl, W.

    1982-01-01

    Oxytocin concentration in jugular vein blood was measured radioimmunologically with a detection limit of 3 pg/ml plasma in male and female cattle. Five bulls were tested; during mating a cow in oestrus with intromission and ejaculation, during mounting a dummy or another bull with ejaculation into an artificial vagina or during false mounts. No increase in oxytocin concentrations could be observed, but stimulation with an electro-ejaculator caused an increase ranging from 5-84 pg/ml after a latent period of 3-5 min. A similar response was observed in two cows following the same procedure. The contact with a bull, false mount or mating with intromission and ejaculation was not followed by a measurable oxytocin release in 5 test cows. The following stimulation techniques, massage of vulva and clitoris, massage of cervix and uterus per rectum, artificial insemination, introduction of a speculum into the vagina or insufflation of air into the vagina were performed with 5 cows and 5 heifers. Insufflation of air into the vagina was the most effective stimulus, eleciting an oxytocin release up to 588 pg/ml. All 5 heiers responded positively, as well as 4 cows in oestrus. The other manipulations cuased an oxytocin response mainly in heifers (whether in oestrus or dioestrus), whereas only one cow in oestrus responded with an oxytocin release. In general, oxytocin concentrations increase about 30-90 s after the start of the stimulus. (author)

  5. Oxytocin improves emotion recognition for older males.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Campbell, Anna; Ruffman, Ted; Murray, Janice E; Glue, Paul

    2014-10-01

    Older adults (≥60 years) perform worse than young adults (18-30 years) when recognizing facial expressions of emotion. The hypothesized cause of these changes might be declines in neurotransmitters that could affect information processing within the brain. In the present study, we examined the neuropeptide oxytocin that functions to increase neurotransmission. Research suggests that oxytocin benefits the emotion recognition of less socially able individuals. Men tend to have lower levels of oxytocin and older men tend to have worse emotion recognition than older women; therefore, there is reason to think that older men will be particularly likely to benefit from oxytocin. We examined this idea using a double-blind design, testing 68 older and 68 young adults randomly allocated to receive oxytocin nasal spray (20 international units) or placebo. Forty-five minutes afterward they completed an emotion recognition task assessing labeling accuracy for angry, disgusted, fearful, happy, neutral, and sad faces. Older males receiving oxytocin showed improved emotion recognition relative to those taking placebo. No differences were found for older females or young adults. We hypothesize that oxytocin facilitates emotion recognition by improving neurotransmission in the group with the worst emotion recognition. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  6. Effects of intranasal and peripheral oxytocin or gastrin-releasing peptide administration on social interaction and corticosterone levels in rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kent, Pamela; Awadia, Alisha; Zhao, Leah; Ensan, Donna; Silva, Dinuka; Cayer, Christian; James, Jonathan S; Anisman, Hymie; Merali, Zul

    2016-02-01

    The intranasal route of drug administration has gained increased popularity as it is thought to allow large molecules, such as peptide hormones, more direct access to the brain, while limiting systemic exposure. Several studies have investigated the effects of intranasal oxytocin administration in humans as this peptide is associated with prosocial behavior. There are, however, few preclinical studies investigating the effects of intranasal oxytocin administration in rodents. Oxytocin modulates hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis functioning and it has been suggested that oxytocin's ability to increase sociability may occur through a reduction in stress reactivity. Another peptide that appears to influence both social behavior and HPA axis activity is gastrin-releasing peptide (GRP), but it is not known if these GRP-induced effects are related. With this in mind, in the present study, we assessed the effects of intranasal and intraperitoneal oxytocin and GRP administration on social interaction and release of corticosterone in rats. Intranasal and intraperitoneal administration of 20, but not 5 μg, of oxytocin significantly increased social interaction, whereas intranasal and peripheral administration of GRP (20 but not 5 μg) significantly decreased levels of social interaction. In addition, while intranasal oxytocin (20 μg) had no effect on blood corticosterone levels, a marked increase in blood corticosterone levels was observed following intraperitoneal oxytocin administration. With GRP, intranasal (20 μg) but not peripheral administration increased corticosterone levels. These findings provide further evidence that intranasal peptide delivery can induce behavioral alterations in rodents which is consistent with findings from human studies. In addition, the peptide-induced changes in social interaction were not linked to fluctuations in corticosterone levels. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  7. Oxytocin decreases colonic motility of cold water stressed rats via oxytocin receptors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Xiao; Xi, Tao-Fang; Li, Yu-Xian; Wang, Hai-Hong; Qin, Ying; Zhang, Jie-Ping; Cai, Wen-Ting; Huang, Meng-Ting; Shen, Ji-Qiao; Fan, Xi-Min; Shi, Xuan-Zheng; Xie, Dong-Ping

    2014-08-21

    To investigate whether cold water intake into the stomach affects colonic motility and the involvement of the oxytocin-oxytocin receptor pathway in rats. Female Sprague Dawley rats were used and some of them were ovariectomized. The rats were subjected to gastric instillation with cold (0-4 °C, cold group) or room temperature (20-25 °C, control group) saline for 14 consecutive days. Colon transit was determined with a bead inserted into the colon. Colonic longitudinal muscle strips were prepared to investigate the response to oxytocin in vitro. Plasma concentration of oxytocin was detected by ELISA. Oxytocin receptor expression was investigated by Western blot analysis. Immunohistochemistry was used to locate oxytocin receptors. Colon transit was slower in the cold group than in the control group (P cold water intake (0.69 ± 0.08 vs 0.88 ± 0.16, P receptors were located in the myenteric plexus, and their expression was up-regulated in the cold group (P Cold water intake increased blood concentration of oxytocin, but this effect was attenuated in ovariectomized rats (286.99 ± 83.72 pg/mL vs 100.56 ± 92.71 pg/mL, P Cold water intake inhibits colonic motility partially through oxytocin-oxytocin receptor signaling in the myenteric nervous system pathway, which is estrogen dependent.

  8. Oxytocin promotes social bonding in dogs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Romero, Teresa; Nagasawa, Miho; Mogi, Kazutaka; Hasegawa, Toshikazu; Kikusui, Takefumi

    2014-06-24

    Recent evidence suggests that enduring social bonds have fitness benefits. However, very little is known about the neural circuitry and neurochemistry underlying the formation and maintenance of stable social bonds outside reproductive contexts. Oxytocin (OT), a neuropeptide synthetized by the hypothalamus in mammals, regulates many complex forms of social behavior and cognition in both human and nonhuman animals. Animal research, however, has concentrated on monogamous mammals, and it remains unknown whether OT also modulates social bonds in nonreproductive contexts. In this study we provide behavioral evidence that exogenous OT promotes positive social behaviors in the domestic dog toward not only conspecifics but also human partners. Specifically, when sprayed with OT, dogs showed higher social orientation and affiliation toward their owners and higher affiliation and approach behaviors toward dog partners than when sprayed with placebo. Additionally, the exchange of socio-positive behaviors with dog partners triggered the release of endogenous OT, highlighting the involvement of OT in the development of social relationships in the domestic dog. These data provide new insight into the mechanisms that facilitate the maintenance of close social bonds beyond immediate reproductive interest or genetic ties and complement a growing body of evidence that identifies OT as one of the neurochemical foundations of sociality in mammalian species.

  9. Modulation of fatty acid synthase degradation by concerted action of p38 MAP kinase, E3 ligase COP1, and SH2-tyrosine phosphatase Shp2.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yu, Jianxiu; Deng, Rong; Zhu, Helen H; Zhang, Sharon S; Zhu, Changhong; Montminy, Marc; Davis, Roger; Feng, Gen-Sheng

    2013-02-08

    The Src-homology 2 (SH2) domain-containing tyrosine phosphatase Shp2 has been known to regulate various signaling pathways triggered by receptor and cytoplasmic tyrosine kinases. Here we describe a novel function of Shp2 in control of lipid metabolism by mediating degradation of fatty acid synthase (FASN). p38-phosphorylated COP1 accumulates in the cytoplasm and subsequently binds FASN through Shp2 here as an adapter, leading to FASN-Shp2-COP1 complex formation and FASN degradation mediated by ubiquitination pathway. By fasting p38 is activated and stimulates FASN protein degradation in mice. Consistently, the FASN protein levels are dramatically elevated in mouse liver and pancreas in which Shp2/Ptpn11 is selectively deleted. Thus, this study identifies a new activity for Shp2 in lipid metabolism.

  10. Differential effects of oxytocin on social sensitivity in two distinct breeds of dogs (Canis familiaris).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kovács, Krisztina; Kis, Anna; Pogány, Ákos; Koller, Dóra; Topál, József

    2016-12-01

    Dogs have been proven to show several human-analogue social behaviors, and recent research raises the possibility that the oxytocin system is related to these. However, despite dogs' general tendency to excel in the domain of social cognition, there is increasing evidence that dogs' ability to utilize human signals may vary with breed. Moreover, breeds may show differences not only in their 'inborn' communicative abilities, but also in their learning skills related to these. The aim of the present study was to explore breed differences and breed-specific effects of oxytocin administration on different aspects of social responsiveness. Dogs from two markedly different breeds, Border Collies (cooperative workers) and Siberian Huskies (independent workers) were tested. After having received intranasal administration of oxytocin or placebo, subjects participated in three behavioral tests measuring social responsiveness. Our results show that there are several behavioral differences between the two breeds and also that there are differential effects of the oxytocin treatment. Border Collies were in general more susceptible to the 'social' effects of oxytocin compared to Siberian Huskies: after oxytocin administration they (1) looked more at the experimenter in the 'Unreachable food' situation, (2) looked more at the owner and shifted their gaze more between the sound source and the owner in a potentially dangerous situation, and (3) looked longer at the experimenter's eyes in the 'Tolerance of prolonged eye contact' test. These findings suggest that selection for enhanced cooperative abilities, possibly complemented by the effect of different social environments the two breeds experience, affects dogs' performance in several behavioral tests and that the neurohormonal background differently modulates social behavior in different working breeds. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  11. Activation of Supraoptic Oxytocin Neurons by Secretin Facilitates Social Recognition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Takayanagi, Yuki; Yoshida, Masahide; Takashima, Akihide; Takanami, Keiko; Yoshida, Shoma; Nishimori, Katsuhiko; Nishijima, Ichiko; Sakamoto, Hirotaka; Yamagata, Takanori; Onaka, Tatsushi

    2017-02-01

    Social recognition underlies social behavior in animals, and patients with psychiatric disorders associated with social deficits show abnormalities in social recognition. Oxytocin is implicated in social behavior and has received attention as an effective treatment for sociobehavioral deficits. Secretin receptor-deficient mice show deficits in social behavior. The relationship between oxytocin and secretin concerning social behavior remains to be determined. Expression of c-Fos in oxytocin neurons and release of oxytocin from their dendrites after secretin application were investigated. Social recognition was examined after intracerebroventricular or local injection of secretin, oxytocin, or an oxytocin receptor antagonist in rats, oxytocin receptor-deficient mice, and secretin receptor-deficient mice. Electron and light microscopic immunohistochemical analysis was also performed to determine whether oxytocin neurons extend their dendrites into the medial amygdala. Supraoptic oxytocin neurons expressed the secretin receptor. Secretin activated supraoptic oxytocin neurons and facilitated oxytocin release from dendrites. Secretin increased acquisition of social recognition in an oxytocin receptor-dependent manner. Local application of secretin into the supraoptic nucleus facilitated social recognition, and this facilitation was blocked by an oxytocin receptor antagonist injected into, but not outside of, the medial amygdala. In the medial amygdala, dendrite-like thick oxytocin processes were found to extend from the supraoptic nucleus. Furthermore, oxytocin treatment restored deficits of social recognition in secretin receptor-deficient mice. The results of our study demonstrate that secretin-induced dendritic oxytocin release from supraoptic neurons enhances social recognition. The newly defined secretin-oxytocin system may lead to a possible treatment for social deficits. Copyright © 2016 Society of Biological Psychiatry. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights

  12. Oxytocin reduces alcohol consumption in prairie voles.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stevenson, J R; Wenner, S M; Freestone, D M; Romaine, C C; Parian, M C; Christian, S M; Bohidar, A E; Ndem, J R; Vogel, I R; O'Kane, C M

    2017-10-01

    Alcohol use disorder (AUD) negatively affects millions of people every year in the United States, and effective treatments for AUD are still needed. The neuropeptide oxytocin has shown promise for reducing alcohol drinking in mice and rats. Because oxytocin also plays a key role in complex prosocial behaviors like bonding and attachment, we tested the effect of oxytocin on alcohol drinking in prairie voles, a species that both consumes high amounts of alcohol and forms oxytocin dependent social bonds in a manner similar to humans. Oxytocin treatment (1.0, 3.0, and 10.0mg/kg, i.p.) reduced alcohol consumption in male and female prairie voles in animals that had access to 15% ethanol vs water every other day for 12 alcohol drinking sessions. In animals with continuous access to 15% alcohol and water, oxytocin (3.0mg/kg) reduced alcohol consumption only in the first hour of access after treatment, with no significant effects on consumption over the 24-hr period. In an open field locomotor test, oxytocin (1.0, 3.0, and 10.0mg/kg, i.p.) did not affect overall locomotor activity; however, ethanol (2g/kg, i.p.) increased locomotor activity in males and females, and produced anxiolytic effects (increased time in the center of an open field) in females only. Because prairie voles have been shown to match the alcohol consumption of their cage mate, we evaluated the relationship between cage mates' alcohol drinking. There was an overall pattern of social facilitation (consumption by one cage mate predicted consumption by the other cage mate); however, we found significant individual differences across cages in which many cages did not show significant matching, and, in some cases one cage mate's consumption negatively predicted the other cage mate's consumption. Overall, our data provide support for the potential of oxytocin as a treatment to reduce alcohol consumption. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  13. Oxytocin promotes group-serving dishonesty.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shalvi, Shaul; De Dreu, Carsten K W

    2014-04-15

    To protect and promote the well-being of others, humans may bend the truth and behave unethically. Here we link such tendencies to oxytocin, a neuropeptide known to promote affiliation and cooperation with others. Using a simple coin-toss prediction task in which participants could dishonestly report their performance levels to benefit their group's outcome, we tested the prediction that oxytocin increases group-serving dishonesty. A double-blind, placebo-controlled experiment allowing individuals to lie privately and anonymously to benefit themselves and fellow group members showed that healthy males (n = 60) receiving intranasal oxytocin, rather than placebo, lied more to benefit their group, and did so faster, yet did not necessarily do so because they expected reciprocal dishonesty from fellow group members. Treatment effects emerged when lying had financial consequences and money could be gained; when losses were at stake, individuals in placebo and oxytocin conditions lied to similar degrees. In a control condition (n = 60) in which dishonesty only benefited participants themselves, but not fellow group members, oxytocin did not influence lying. Together, these findings fit a functional perspective on morality revealing dishonesty to be plastic and rooted in evolved neurobiological circuitries, and align with work showing that oxytocin shifts the decision-maker's focus from self to group interests. These findings highlight the role of bonding and cooperation in shaping dishonesty, providing insight into when and why collaboration turns into corruption.

  14. The effects of oxytocine in autism : De werking van oxytocine bij autisme

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Groen, Yvonne; Althaus, Monika; Oosterhoff, Menno; van Balkom, Ingrid; Hoekstra, Pieter J.

    2017-01-01

    Oxytocin is viewed as the hormone of calm, healing and love, and plays an important role in establishing and maintaining social relationships. As autism is characterized by difficulties in social relationships, a dysregulated oxytocin system could possibly be an underlying factor. Our recently

  15. The bZIP transcription factor HY5 interacts with the promoter of the monoterpene synthase gene QH6 in modulating its rhythmic expression.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhou, Fei; Sun, Tian-Hu; Zhao, Lei; Pan, Xi-Wu; Lu, Shan

    2015-01-01

    The Artemisia annua L. β-pinene synthase QH6 was previously determined to be circadian-regulated at the transcriptional level, showing a rhythmic fluctuation of steady-state transcript abundances. Here we isolated both the genomic sequence and upstream promoter region of QH6. Different regulatory elements, such as G-box (TGACACGTGGCA, -421 bp from the translation initiation site) which might have effects on rhythmic gene expression, were found. Using the yeast one-hybrid and electrophoretic mobility shift assay (EMSA), we confirmed that the bZIP transcription factor HY5 binds to this motif of QH6. Studies with promoter truncations before and after this motif suggested that this G-box was important for the diurnal fluctuation of the transgenic β-glucuronidase gene (GUS) transcript abundance in Arabidopsis thaliana. GUS gene driven by the promoter region immediately after G-box showed an arrhythmic expression in both light/dark (LD) and constant dark (DD) conditions, whereas the control with G-box retained its fluctuation in both LD and DD. We further transformed A. thaliana with the luciferase gene (LUC) driven by an 1400 bp fragment upstream QH6 with its G-box intact or mutated, respectively. The luciferase activity assay showed that a peak in the early morning disappeared in the mutant. Gene expression analysis also demonstrated that the rhythmic expression of LUC was abolished in the hy5-1 mutant.

  16. The bZIP transcription factor HY5 interacts with the promoter of the monoterpene synthase gene QH6 in modulating its rhythmic expression

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fei eZhou

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available The Artemisia annua L. β-pinene synthase QH6 was previously determined to be circadian-regulated at the transcriptional level, showing a rhythmic fluctuation of steady-state transcript abundances. Here we isolated both the genomic sequence and upstream promoter region of QH6. Different regulatory elements, such as G-box (TGACACGTGGCA, -421 bp from the translation initiation site which might have effects on rhythmic gene expression, were found. Using the yeast one-hybrid and electrophoretic mobility shift assay (EMSA, we confirmed that the bZIP transcription factor HY5 binds to this motif of QH6. Studies with promoter truncations before and after this motif suggested that this G-box was important for the diurnal fluctuation of the transgenic β-glucuronidase gene (GUS transcript abundance in Arabidopsis thaliana. GUS gene driven by the promoter region immediately after G-box showed an arrhythmic expression in both light/dark (LD and constant dark (DD conditions, whereas the control with G-box retained its fluctuation in both LD and DD. We further transformed A. thaliana with the luciferase gene (LUC driven by an 1400 bp fragment upstream QH6 with its G-box intact or mutated, respectively. The luciferase activity assay showed that a peak in the early morning disappeared in the mutant. Gene expression analysis also demonstrated that the rhythmic expression of LUC was abolished in the hy5-1 mutant.

  17. Modulation of Matrix Metalloproteinase 14, Tissue Inhibitor of Metalloproteinase 3, Tissue Inhibitor of Metalloproteinase 4, and Inducible Nitric Oxide Synthase in the Development of Periapical Lesions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cassanta, Lorena Teodoro de Castro; Rodrigues, Virmondes; Violatti-Filho, Jose Roberto; Teixeira Neto, Benedito Alves; Tavares, Vinícius Marques; Bernal, Eduarda Castelo Branco Araujo; Souza, Danila Malheiros; Araujo, Marcelo Sivieri; de Lima Pereira, Sanivia Aparecida; Rodrigues, Denise Bertulucci Rocha

    2017-07-01

    Periapical cysts and granulomas are chronic lesions caused by an inflammatory immune response against microbial challenge in the root canal. Different cell types, cytokines, and molecules have been associated with periapical lesion formation and expansion. Therefore, because of the chronic inflammatory state of these lesions, the aim of this study was to evaluate the in situ expression of matrix metalloproteinase (MMP)-14 and -19, tissue inhibitor of metalloproteinase (TIMP)-3 and -4, CD68, and inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS) in periapical cysts and granulomas. Sixteen cases of periapical cysts and 15 cases of periapical granulomas were analyzed. Ten normal dental pulps were used as the negative control. Immunohistochemistry was performed with anti-MMP-19, anti-MMP-14, anti-TIMP-3, anti-TIMP-4, anti-iNOS, and anti-CD68 antibodies. The expression of TIMP-3, TIMP-4, iNOS, and CD68 was significantly higher in both the cyst and granuloma groups than in the control group. TIMP-4 was also significantly higher in cases of chronic apical abscess. There was also a significant difference in the expression of MMP-14 between the cyst and control groups. However, there were no differences in the expression of MMP-19 between the 3 groups. Our data suggest that the expression of MMP-14, TIMP-3, and TIMP-4 is associated with the development of periapical lesions. Copyright © 2017 American Association of Endodontists. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  18. Sorafenib targets the mitochondrial electron transport chain complexes and ATP synthase to activate the PINK1-Parkin pathway and modulate cellular drug response.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Conggang; Liu, Zeyu; Bunker, Eric; Ramirez, Adrian; Lee, Schuyler; Peng, Yinghua; Tan, Aik-Choon; Eckhardt, S Gail; Chapnick, Douglas A; Liu, Xuedong

    2017-09-08

    Sorafenib (Nexavar) is a broad-spectrum multikinase inhibitor that proves effective in treating advanced renal-cell carcinoma and liver cancer. Despite its well-characterized mechanism of action on several established cancer-related protein kinases, sorafenib causes variable responses among human tumors, although the cause for this variation is unknown. In an unbiased screening of an oncology drug library, we found that sorafenib activates recruitment of the ubiquitin E3 ligase Parkin to damaged mitochondria. We show that sorafenib inhibits the activity of both complex II/III of the electron transport chain and ATP synthase. Dual inhibition of these complexes, but not inhibition of each individual complex, stabilizes the serine-threonine protein kinase PINK1 on the mitochondrial outer membrane and activates Parkin. Unlike the protonophore carbonyl cyanide m -chlorophenylhydrazone, which activates the mitophagy response, sorafenib treatment triggers PINK1/Parkin-dependent cellular apoptosis, which is attenuated upon Bcl-2 overexpression. In summary, our results reveal a new mechanism of action for sorafenib as a mitocan and suggest that high Parkin activity levels could make tumor cells more sensitive to sorafenib's actions, providing one possible explanation why Parkin may be a tumor suppressor gene. These insights could be useful in developing new rationally designed combination therapies with sorafenib. © 2017 by The American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Inc.

  19. Mutations in the FMN domain modulate MCD spectra of the heme site in the oxygenase domain of inducible nitric oxide synthase.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sempombe, Joseph; Elmore, Bradley O; Sun, Xi; Dupont, Andrea; Ghosh, Dipak K; Guillemette, J Guy; Kirk, Martin L; Feng, Changjian

    2009-05-27

    The nitric oxide synthase (NOS) output state for NO production is a complex of the flavin mononucleotide (FMN)-binding domain and the heme domain, and thereby it facilitates the interdomain electron transfer from the FMN to the catalytic heme site. Emerging evidence suggests that interdomain FMN-heme interactions are important in the formation of the output state because they guide the docking of the FMN domain to the heme domain. In this study, notable effects of mutations in the adjacent FMN domain on the heme structure in a human iNOS bidomain oxygenase/FMN construct have been observed by using low-temperature magnetic circular dichroism (MCD) spectroscopy. The comparative MCD study of wild-type and mutant proteins clearly indicates that a properly docked FMN domain contributes to the observed L-Arg perturbation of the heme MCD spectrum in the wild-type protein and that the conserved surface residues in the FMN domain (E546 and E603) play key roles in facilitating a productive alignment of the FMN and heme domains in iNOS.

  20. A general approach-avoidance hypothesis of oxytocin: accounting for social and non-social effects of oxytocin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harari-Dahan, Osnat; Bernstein, Amit

    2014-11-01

    We critically reexamine extant theory and empirical study of Oxytocin. We question whether OT is, in fact, a "social neuropeptide" as argued in dominant theories of OT. We critically review human and animal research on the social and non-social effects of Oxytocin, including behavioral, psychophysiological, neurobiological, and neuroimaging studies. We find that extant (social) theories of Oxytocin do not account for well-documented non-social effects of Oxytocin. Furthermore, we find a range of evidence that social and non-social effects of Oxytocin may be mediated by core approach-avoidance motivational processes. We propose a General Approach-avoidance Hypothesis of Oxytocin (GAAO). We argue that the GAAO may provide a parsimonious account of established social and non-social effects of Oxytocin. We thus re-conceptualize the basic function(s) and mechanism(s) of action of Oxytocin. Finally, we highlight implications of the GAAO for basic and clinical research in humans

  1. Sequence of the gamma-subunit of Spirulina platensis : a new principle of thiol modulation of F0F1 ATP synthase?

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Steinemann, D.; Lill, H

    1995-01-01

    The gene encoding the gamma subunit of Spirulina platensis F0F1, the relative of the chloroplast F1 subunit responsible for thiol activation, has been cloned and sequenced. As in other cyanobacteria, a specific couple of cysteines like those involved in thiol modulation of the chloroplast enzyme was

  2. Oxytocin in the Treatment of Dystocia in Mice

    Science.gov (United States)

    Narver, Heather L

    2012-01-01

    Physicians and veterinarians often prescribe oxytocin to treat dystocia. However, oxytocin administration to pregnant women or animals is not without risk. In the venue of laboratory animal medicine, the use of oxytocin may present confounding variables to research. Although oxytocin has been studied extensively, many of its physiologic effects and interactions with other hormones remain unclear. Investigator concerns about adverse and confounding effects of oxytocin in their research mice prompted the current review of oxytocin and its use to treat murine dystocia. Well-controlled studies of oxytocin in dystocic mice have not been conducted. However, in humans and other animals, inconsistent and adverse effects are well-documented. Limited knowledge of the complex physiologic and molecular mechanisms of action of oxytocin and scant support for the efficacy of oxytocin in dystocic mice fail to meet the standards of evidence-based veterinary medical practice. The administration of oxytocin is contraindicated in many cases of dystocia in research mice, and its use in dystocic mice may be unfounded. A brief review of oxytocin and the physiologic mechanisms of parturition are provided to support this conclusion. Alternative treatments for murine dystocia are discussed, and a holistic approach is advocated to better serve animal welfare and to safeguard the integrity of valuable research. Laboratory animal veterinarians overseeing the development of guidelines or standard operating procedures for technician or investigator treatment of dystocic mice should understand the effects of oxytocin administration in light of relevant research. PMID:22330862

  3. Extracellular Protein Kinase A Modulates Intracellular Calcium/Calmodulin-Dependent Protein Kinase II, Nitric Oxide Synthase, and the Glutamate-Nitric Oxide-cGMP Pathway in Cerebellum. Differential Effects in Hyperammonemia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cabrera-Pastor, Andrea; Llansola, Marta; Felipo, Vicente

    2016-12-21

    Extracellular protein kinases, including cAMP-dependent protein kinase (PKA), modulate neuronal functions including N-methyl-d-aspartate (NMDA) receptor-dependent long-term potentiation. NMDA receptor activation increases calcium, which binds to calmodulin and activates nitric oxide synthase (NOS), increasing nitric oxide (NO), which activates guanylate cyclase, increasing cGMP, which is released to the extracellular fluid, allowing analysis of this glutamate-NO-cGMP pathway in vivo by microdialysis. The function of this pathway is impaired in hyperammonemic rats. The aims of this work were to assess (1) whether the glutamate-NO-cGMP pathway is modulated in cerebellum in vivo by an extracellular PKA, (2) the role of phosphorylation and activity of calcium/calmodulin-dependent protein kinase II (CaMKII) and NOS in the pathway modulation by extracellular PKA, and (3) whether the effects are different in hyperammonemic and control rats. The pathway was analyzed by in vivo microdialysis. The role of extracellular PKA was analyzed by inhibiting it with a membrane-impermeable inhibitor. The mechanisms involved were analyzed in freshly isolated cerebellar slices from control and hyperammonemic rats. In control rats, inhibiting extracellular PKA reduces the glutamate-NO-cGMP pathway function in vivo. This is due to reduction of CaMKII phosphorylation and activity, which reduces NOS phosphorylation at Ser1417 and NOS activity, resulting in reduced guanylate cyclase activation and cGMP formation. In hyperammonemic rats, under basal conditions, CaMKII phosphorylation and activity are increased, increasing NOS phosphorylation at Ser847, which reduces NOS activity, guanylate cyclase activation, and cGMP. Inhibiting extracellular PKA in hyperammonemic rats normalizes CaMKII phosphorylation and activity, NOS phosphorylation, NOS activity, and cGMP, restoring normal function of the pathway.

  4. Glyoxalase I reduces glycative and oxidative stress and prevents age-related endothelial dysfunction through modulation of endothelial nitric oxide synthase phosphorylation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jo-Watanabe, Airi; Ohse, Takamoto; Nishimatsu, Hiroaki; Takahashi, Masao; Ikeda, Yoichiro; Wada, Takehiko; Shirakawa, Jun-ichi; Nagai, Ryoji; Miyata, Toshio; Nagano, Tetsuo; Hirata, Yasunobu; Inagi, Reiko; Nangaku, Masaomi

    2014-06-01

    Endothelial dysfunction is a major contributor to cardiovascular disease (CVD), particularly in elderly people. Studies have demonstrated the role of glycation in endothelial dysfunction in nonphysiological models, but the physiological role of glycation in age-related endothelial dysfunction has been poorly addressed. Here, to investigate how vascular glycation affects age-related endothelial function, we employed rats systemically overexpressing glyoxalase I (GLO1), which detoxifies methylglyoxal (MG), a representative precursor of glycation. Four groups of rats were examined, namely young (13 weeks old), mid-age (53 weeks old) wild-type, and GLO1 transgenic (WT/GLO1 Tg) rats. Age-related acceleration in glycation was attenuated in GLO1 Tg rats, together with lower aortic carboxymethyllysine (CML) and urinary 8-hydroxydeoxyguanosine (8-OHdG) levels. Age-related impairment of endothelium-dependent vasorelaxation was attenuated in GLO1 Tg rats, whereas endothelium-independent vasorelaxation was not different between WT and GLO1 Tg rats. Nitric oxide (NO) production was decreased in mid-age WT rats, but not in mid-age GLO1 Tg rats. Age-related inactivation of endothelial NO synthase (eNOS) due to phosphorylation of eNOS on Thr495 and dephosphorylation on Ser1177 was ameliorated in GLO1 Tg rats. In vitro, MG increased phosphorylation of eNOS (Thr495) in primary human aortic endothelial cells (HAECs), and overexpression of GLO1 decreased glycative stress and phosphorylation of eNOS (Thr495). Together, GLO1 reduced age-related endothelial glycative and oxidative stress, altered phohphorylation of eNOS, and attenuated endothelial dysfunction. As a molecular mechanism, GLO1 lessened inhibitory phosphorylation of eNOS (Thr495) by reducing glycative stress. Our study demonstrates that blunting glycative stress prevents the long-term impact of endothelial dysfunction on vascular aging. © 2014 The Authors. Aging Cell published by the Anatomical Society and John Wiley & Sons

  5. Determination of plasma oxytocin by radioimmunoassay

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ogawa, Satsuki; Fukuchi, Soitsu; Miura, Tadashi

    1978-01-01

    A simple radioimmunoassay was applied to the measurement of oxytocin in human plasma. A high specificity of immunoassay was demonstrated by the fact that large excess of angiotensin I and II, and ACTH did not displace labelled oxytocin from the antibody. Lysine-8-vasopressin and arginine-8-vasopressin showed very little cross-reaction in the assay, possessing only 0.002% of the immunological potency of oxytocin. The specific activity of 125 I-oxytocin was 166 μCi/μg. Adsorption and extraction capacities of Florisil were 96.6 +- 2.1% and 85.7 +- 2.5%, respectively. Intra- and inter-assay variability were 7.2 +- 4.9% and 4.3 +- 2.2%, respectively. The sensitivity of the assay was below 1 pg/tube. Normal levels of plasma oxytocin were 0 - 2.2 pg/ml (n=13) in males and 0 - 10.4 pg/ml (n=10) in females. Plasma oxytocin levels in the 39th and 40th weeks of pregnancy were 27.9 +- 4.14 pg/ml (n=4) and 29.8 +- 17.1 pg/ml (n=13), respectively. The levels increased to 33.1 +- 12.1 pg/ml (n=7) and 37.1 +- 17.5 pg/ml (n=7) in the first and third stages of labor, and decreased to 13.6 +- 5.25 pg/ml (n=6) on the 2nd to 8th day after labor. The radioimmunoassay for oxytocin in plasma is considered to be sufficiently applicable for clinical use. (auth.)

  6. Neurofunctional maps of the 'maternal brain' and the effects of oxytocin: a multimodal voxel-based meta-analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rocchetti, Matteo; Radua, Joaquim; Paloyelis, Yannis; Xenaki, Lida-Alkisti; Frascarelli, Marianna; Caverzasi, Edgardo; Politi, Pierluigi; Fusar-Poli, Paolo

    2014-10-01

    Several studies have tried to understand the possible neurobiological basis of mothering. The putative involvement of oxytocin, in this regard, has been deeply investigated. Performing a voxel-based meta-analysis, we aimed at testing the hypothesis of overlapping brain activation in functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) studies investigating the mother-infant interaction and the oxytocin modulation of emotional stimuli in humans. We performed two systematic literature searches: fMRI studies investigating the neurofunctional correlates of the 'maternal brain' by employing mother-infant paradigms; and fMRI studies employing oxytocin during emotional tasks. A unimodal voxel-based meta-analysis was performed on each database, whereas a multimodal voxel-based meta-analytical tool was adopted to assess the hypothesis that the neurofunctional effects of oxytocin are detected in brain areas implicated in the 'maternal brain.' We found greater activation in the bilateral insula extending to the inferior frontal gyrus, basal ganglia and thalamus during mother-infant interaction and greater left insular activation associated with oxytocin administration versus placebo. Left insula extending to basal ganglia and frontotemporal gyri as well as bilateral thalamus and amygdala showed consistent activation across the two paradigms. Right insula also showed activation across the two paradigms, and dorsomedial frontal cortex activation in mothers but deactivation with oxytocin. Significant activation in areas involved in empathy, emotion regulation, motivation, social cognition and theory of mind emerged from our multimodal meta-analysis, supporting the need for further studies directly investigating the neurobiology of oxytocin in the mother-infant relationship. © 2014 The Authors. Psychiatry and Clinical Neurosciences © 2014 Japanese Society of Psychiatry and Neurology.

  7. A randomised controlled trial comparing oxytocin and oxytocin + ergometrine for prevention of postpartum haemorrhage at caesarean section.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Koen, Sandy; Snyman, Leon Cornelius; Pattinson, Robert C; Makin, Jennifer A

    2016-03-07

    Globally 166 000 women die annually as a result of obstetric haemorrhage. More than 50% of these deaths occur in sub-Saharan Africa. Uterine atony is the commonest cause of severe postpartum haemorrhage (PPH). Bleeding at or after caesarean section (CS) is responsible for >30% of maternal deaths due to obstetric haemorrhage in South Africa (SA). To compare oxytocin alone with oxytocin + ergometrine in terms of primary prophylaxis for PPH at the time of CS. This was a double-blind randomised controlled interventional study comparing oxytocin with oxytocin + ergometrine administered during CS. Patients were randomised to receive oxytocin alone intravenously as a bolus or oxytocin + ergometrine intramuscularly, with the placebo being an injection of sterile water. The study population consisted of women undergoing CS at Kalafong Provincial Tertiary Hospital in Atteridgeville, Gauteng, SA. Five hundred and forty women were randomised and data for 416 women, of whom 214 received oxytocin and 202 oxytocin + ergometrine, were available for analysis. In the oxytocin group 19 women (8.9%) required blood transfusion, compared with seven (3.5%) in the oxytocin + ergometrine group (p=0.01; relative risk = 2.78; 95% confidence interval 1.21 - 6.4). There were no statistically significant differences in the mean estimated visual and mean calculated blood loss. The overall need for blood transfusion was significantly reduced by about two-thirds in women receiving the oxytocin + ergometrine combination. Consideration should be given to using oxytocin + ergometrine for prophylaxis of PPH at CS.

  8. Fto colocalizes with a satiety mediator oxytocin in the brain and upregulates oxytocin gene expression

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Olszewski, Pawel K., E-mail: olsze005@umn.edu [Department of Neuroscience, Functional Pharmacology, Uppsala University, 75124 Uppsala (Sweden); Minnesota Obesity Center, Saint Paul, MN 55108 (United States); Fredriksson, Robert; Eriksson, Jenny D. [Department of Neuroscience, Functional Pharmacology, Uppsala University, 75124 Uppsala (Sweden); Mitra, Anaya [Department of Food Science and Nutrition, Saint Paul, MN 55108 (United States); Radomska, Katarzyna J. [Department of Neuroscience, Functional Pharmacology, Uppsala University, 75124 Uppsala (Sweden); Gosnell, Blake A. [Department of Food Science and Nutrition, Saint Paul, MN 55108 (United States); Solvang, Maria N. [Department of Neuroscience, Functional Pharmacology, Uppsala University, 75124 Uppsala (Sweden); Levine, Allen S. [Minnesota Obesity Center, Saint Paul, MN 55108 (United States); Department of Food Science and Nutrition, Saint Paul, MN 55108 (United States); Schioeth, Helgi B. [Department of Neuroscience, Functional Pharmacology, Uppsala University, 75124 Uppsala (Sweden)

    2011-05-13

    Highlights: {yields} The majority of neurons synthesizing a satiety mediator, oxytocin, coexpress Fto. {yields} The level of colocalization is similar in the male and female brain. {yields} Fto overexpression in hypothalamic neurons increases oxytocin mRNA levels by 50%. {yields} Oxytocin does not affect Fto expression through negative feedback mechanisms. -- Abstract: Single nucleotide polymorphisms in the fat mass and obesity-associated (FTO) gene have been associated with obesity in humans. Alterations in Fto expression in transgenic animals affect body weight, energy expenditure and food intake. Fto, a nuclear protein and proposed transcription co-factor, has been speculated to affect energy balance through a functional relationship with specific genes encoding feeding-related peptides. Herein, we employed double immunohistochemistry and showed that the majority of neurons synthesizing a satiety mediator, oxytocin, coexpress Fto in the brain of male and female mice. We then overexpressed Fto in a murine hypothalamic cell line and, using qPCR, detected a 50% increase in the level of oxytocin mRNA. Expression levels of several other feeding-related genes, including neuropeptide Y (NPY) and Agouti-related protein (AgRP), were unaffected by the FTO transfection. Addition of 10 and 100 nmol oxytocin to the cell culture medium did not affect Fto expression in hypothalamic cells. We conclude that Fto, a proposed transcription co-factor, influences expression of the gene encoding a satiety mediator, oxytocin.

  9. Fto colocalizes with a satiety mediator oxytocin in the brain and upregulates oxytocin gene expression

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Olszewski, Pawel K.; Fredriksson, Robert; Eriksson, Jenny D.; Mitra, Anaya; Radomska, Katarzyna J.; Gosnell, Blake A.; Solvang, Maria N.; Levine, Allen S.; Schioeth, Helgi B.

    2011-01-01

    Highlights: → The majority of neurons synthesizing a satiety mediator, oxytocin, coexpress Fto. → The level of colocalization is similar in the male and female brain. → Fto overexpression in hypothalamic neurons increases oxytocin mRNA levels by 50%. → Oxytocin does not affect Fto expression through negative feedback mechanisms. -- Abstract: Single nucleotide polymorphisms in the fat mass and obesity-associated (FTO) gene have been associated with obesity in humans. Alterations in Fto expression in transgenic animals affect body weight, energy expenditure and food intake. Fto, a nuclear protein and proposed transcription co-factor, has been speculated to affect energy balance through a functional relationship with specific genes encoding feeding-related peptides. Herein, we employed double immunohistochemistry and showed that the majority of neurons synthesizing a satiety mediator, oxytocin, coexpress Fto in the brain of male and female mice. We then overexpressed Fto in a murine hypothalamic cell line and, using qPCR, detected a 50% increase in the level of oxytocin mRNA. Expression levels of several other feeding-related genes, including neuropeptide Y (NPY) and Agouti-related protein (AgRP), were unaffected by the FTO transfection. Addition of 10 and 100 nmol oxytocin to the cell culture medium did not affect Fto expression in hypothalamic cells. We conclude that Fto, a proposed transcription co-factor, influences expression of the gene encoding a satiety mediator, oxytocin.

  10. Associative and sensorimotor learning for parenting involves mirror neurons under the influence of oxytocin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ho, S Shaun; Macdonald, Adam; Swain, James E

    2014-04-01

    Mirror neuron-based associative learning may be understood according to associative learning theories, in addition to sensorimotor learning theories. This is important for a comprehensive understanding of the role of mirror neurons and related hormone modulators, such as oxytocin, in complex social interactions such as among parent-infant dyads and in examples of mirror neuron function that involve abnormal motor systems such as depression.

  11. Associative and sensorimotor learning for parenting involves mirror neurons under the influence of oxytocin

    OpenAIRE

    Ho, S. Shaun; MacDonald, Adam; Swain, James E.

    2014-01-01

    Mirror neuron–based associative learning may be understood according to associative learning theories, in addition to sensorimotor learning theories. This is important for a comprehensive understanding of the role of mirror neurons and related hormone modulators, such as oxytocin, in complex social interactions such as among parent–infant dyads and in examples of mirror neuron function that involve abnormal motor systems such as depression.

  12. Brassica juncea nitric oxide synthase like activity is stimulated by PKC activators and calcium suggesting modulation by PKC-like kinase.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Talwar, Pooja Saigal; Gupta, Ravi; Maurya, Arun Kumar; Deswal, Renu

    2012-11-01

    Nitric oxide (NO) is an important signaling molecule having varied physiological and regulatory roles in biological systems. The fact that nitric oxide synthase (NOS) is responsible for NO generation in animals, prompted major search for a similar enzyme in plants. Arginine dependent NOS like activity (BjNOSla) was detected in Brassica juncea seedlings using oxyhemoglobin and citrulline assays. BjNOSla showed 25% activation by NADPH (0.4 mM) and 40% by calcium (0.4 mM) but the activity was flavin mononucleotide (FMN), flavin dinucleotide (FAD) and calmodulin (CaM) independent. Pharmacological approach using mammalian NOS inhibitors, NBT (300 μM) and l-NAME (5 mM), showed significant inhibition (100% and 67% respectively) supporting that the BjNOSla operates via the oxidative pathway. Most of the BjNOSla activity (80%) was confined to shoot while root showed only 20% activity. Localization studies by NADPH-diaphorase and DAF-2DA staining showed the presence of BjNOSla in guard cells. Kinetic analysis showed positive cooperativity with calcium as reflected by a decreased K(m) (∼13%) and almost two fold increase in V(max). PMA (438 nM), a kinase activator, activated BjNOSla ∼1.9 fold while its inactive analog 4αPDD was ineffective. Calcium and PMA activated the enzyme to ∼3 folds. Interestingly, 1,2-DG6 (2.5 μM) and PS (1 μM) with calcium activated the enzyme activity to ∼7 fold. A significant inhibition of BjNOSla by PKC inhibitors-staurosporine (∼90%) and calphostin-C (∼40%), further supports involvement of PKC-like kinase. The activity was also enhanced by abiotic stress conditions (7-46%). All these findings suggest that BjNOSla generates NO via oxidative pathway and is probably regulated by phosphorylation. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Masson SAS. All rights reserved.

  13. Nitric Oxide Synthase 1 Modulates Basal and β-Adrenergic-Stimulated Contractility by Rapid and Reversible Redox-Dependent S-Nitrosylation of the Heart

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vielma, Alejandra Z.; León, Luisa; Fernández, Ignacio C.; González, Daniel R.

    2016-01-01

    S-nitrosylation of several Ca2+ regulating proteins in response to β-adrenergic stimulation was recently described in the heart; however the specific nitric oxide synthase (NOS) isoform and signaling pathways responsible for this modification have not been elucidated. NOS-1 activity increases inotropism, therefore, we tested whether β-adrenergic stimulation induces NOS-1-dependent S-nitrosylation of total proteins, the ryanodine receptor (RyR2), SERCA2 and the L-Type Ca2+ channel (LTCC). In the isolated rat heart, isoproterenol (10 nM, 3-min) increased S-nitrosylation of total cardiac proteins (+46±14%) and RyR2 (+146±77%), without affecting S-nitrosylation of SERCA2 and LTCC. Selective NOS-1 blockade with S-methyl-L-thiocitrulline (SMTC) and Nω-propyl-l-arginine decreased basal contractility and relaxation (−25–30%) and basal S-nitrosylation of total proteins (−25–60%), RyR2, SERCA2 and LTCC (−60–75%). NOS-1 inhibition reduced (−25–40%) the inotropic response and protein S-nitrosylation induced by isoproterenol, particularly that of RyR2 (−85±7%). Tempol, a superoxide scavenger, mimicked the effects of NOS-1 inhibition on inotropism and protein S-nitrosylation; whereas selective NOS-3 inhibitor L-N5-(1-Iminoethyl)ornithine had no effect. Inhibition of NOS-1 did not affect phospholamban phosphorylation, but reduced its oligomerization. Attenuation of contractility was abolished by PKA blockade and unaffected by guanylate cyclase inhibition. Additionally, in isolated mouse cardiomyocytes, NOS-1 inhibition or removal reduced the Ca2+-transient amplitude and sarcomere shortening induced by isoproterenol or by direct PKA activation. We conclude that 1) normal cardiac performance requires basal NOS-1 activity and S-nitrosylation of the calcium-cycling machinery; 2) β-adrenergic stimulation induces rapid and reversible NOS-1 dependent, PKA and ROS-dependent, S-nitrosylation of RyR2 and other proteins, accounting for about one third of its

  14. Oxytocin, Motivation and the Role of Dopamine

    Science.gov (United States)

    Love, Tiffany M.

    2013-01-01

    The hypothalamic neuropeptide oxytocin has drawn the attention of scientists for more than a century. The understanding of the function of oxytocin has expanded dramatically over the years from a simple peptide adept at inducing uterine contractions and milk ejection to a complex neuromodulator with a capacity to shape human social behavior. Decades of research have outlined oxytocin’s ability to enhance intricate social activities ranging from pair bonding, sexual activity, affiliative preferences, and parental behaviors. The precise neural mechanisms underlying oxytocin’s influence on such behaviors have just begun to be understood. Research suggests that oxytocin interacts closely with the neural pathways responsible for processing motivationally relevant stimuli. In particular, oxytocin appears to impact dopaminergic activity within the mesocorticolimbic dopamine system, which is crucial not only for reward and motivated behavior but also for the expression of affiliative behaviors. Though most of the work performed in this area has been done using animal models, several neuroimaging studies suggest similar relationships may be observed in humans. In order to introduce this topic further, this paper will review the recent evidence that oxytocin may exert some of its social-behavioral effects through its impact on motivational networks. PMID:23850525

  15. Ovarian hormone deprivation reduces oxytocin expression in Paraventricular Nucleus preautonomic neurons and correlates with baroreflex impairment in rats

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vitor Ulisses De Melo

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available The prevalence of cardiovascular diseases including hypertension increases dramatically in women after menopause, however the mechanisms involved remain incompletely understood. Oxytocinergic (OTergic neurons are largely present within the paraventricular nucleus of the hypothalamus (PVN. Several studies have shown that OTergic drive from PVN to brainstem increases baroreflex sensitivity and improves autonomic control of the circulation. Since preautonomic PVN neurons express different types of estrogen receptors, we hypothesize that ovarian hormone deprivation causes baroreflex impairment, autonomic imbalance and hypertension by negatively impacting OTergic drive and oxytocin levels in pre-autonomic neurons. Here, we assessed oxytocin gene and protein expression (qPCR and immunohistochemistry within PVN subnuclei in sham-operated and ovariectomized Wistar rats. Conscious hemodynamic recordings were used to assess resting blood pressure and heart rate and the autonomic modulation of heart and vessels was estimated by power spectral analysis. We observed that the ovarian hormone deprivation in ovariectomized rats decreased baroreflex sensitivity, increased sympathetic and reduced vagal outflows to the heart and augmented the resting blood pressure. Of note, ovariectomized rats had reduced PVN oxytocin mRNA and protein expression in all pre-autonomic PVN subnuclei. Furthermore, reduced PVN oxytocin protein levels were positively correlated with decreased baroreflex sensitivity and negatively correlated with increased LF/HF ratio. These findings suggest that reduced oxytocin expression in OTergic neurons of the PVN contributes to the baroreflex dysfunction and autonomic dysregulation observed with ovarian hormone deprivation.

  16. Oxytocin: Old Hormone, New Drug

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jolanta Gutkowska

    2009-12-01

    Full Text Available Oxytocin (OT, traditionally associated with reproductive functions, was revisited recently, and several new functions in cardiovascular regulation were discovered. These functions include stimulation of the cardioprotective mediators nitric oxide (NO and atrial natriuretic peptide. OT’s cardiovascular outcomes comprise: (i natriuresis, (ii blood pressure reduction, (iii negative inotropic and chronotropic effects, (iv parasympathetic neuromodulation, (v NO pathway involvement in vasodilatation and endothelial cell growth, (vi anti-inflammatory and (vii antioxidant activities as well as (viii metabolic effects. In addition, we have reported abundant OT in the early developing heart with its capacity to generate cardiomyocytes (CMs from mouse embryonic stem cells and stem cells residing in the heart. OT increases glucose uptake by cultured CMs, in normal, hypoxic and even in insulin resistance conditions. In experimentally-induced myocardial infarction in rats, continuous in vivo OT delivery improves the cardiac healing process and cardiac work, diminishes inflammation, and stimulates angiogenesis. Therefore, in pathological situations, OT plays an anti-inflammatory and cardioprotective role, enhancing vascular and metabolic functions, with potential therapeutic application(s.

  17. Human ovolution and plasma oxytocin

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kumaresan, Perianna; Kumaresan, Malathi; Hossini, Mahmood; Arellano, Carolina; Vasicka, Alois

    1983-01-01

    Plasma oxytocin (OT) concentrations were measured by radioimmunoassay (RIA) method without extracting plasma in 11 normal menstruating women. Mean plasma OT level began to increase steadily from the 7th day of the menstrual cycle and this level rose up to 20+-5 μU/ml (Mean+-S.E.) on the 10th day of the cycle. OT level declined to 13+-6 μU/ml on the day of the LH peak and continuously declined for another 2 days - then rose. The OT level was higher during the follicular phase than during the luteal phase. In 1 individual OT measured in 2 cycles a year apart showed the highest level of OT coincided with LH and FSH peak and abruptly declined. When there was the highest level of progesterone, the OT level was measurable 1 out of 11 cycles. From this study, we conclude that OT may have a role in human ovulation either synergistically or alone with other ovulatory mechanisms and ovarian estradiol and progesterone control the secretion of OT and also suggests that OT may play some role in the regulation of the luteolysis and the menstrual cycle in women. (author)

  18. Oxytocin signaling in mouse taste buds.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michael S Sinclair

    2010-08-01

    Full Text Available The neuropeptide, oxytocin (OXT, acts on brain circuits to inhibit food intake. Mutant mice lacking OXT (OXT knockout overconsume salty and sweet (i.e. sucrose, saccharin solutions. We asked if OXT might also act on taste buds via its receptor, OXTR.Using RT-PCR, we detected the expression of OXTR in taste buds throughout the oral cavity, but not in adjacent non-taste lingual epithelium. By immunostaining tissues from OXTR-YFP knock-in mice, we found that OXTR is expressed in a subset of Glial-like (Type I taste cells, and also in cells on the periphery of taste buds. Single-cell RT-PCR confirmed this cell-type assignment. Using Ca2+ imaging, we observed that physiologically appropriate concentrations of OXT evoked [Ca2+]i mobilization in a subset of taste cells (EC50 approximately 33 nM. OXT-evoked responses were significantly inhibited by the OXTR antagonist, L-371,257. Isolated OXT-responsive taste cells were neither Receptor (Type II nor Presynaptic (Type III cells, consistent with our immunofluorescence observations. We also investigated the source of OXT peptide that may act on taste cells. Both RT-PCR and immunostaining suggest that the OXT peptide is not produced in taste buds or in their associated nerves. Finally, we also examined the morphology of taste buds from mice that lack OXTR. Taste buds and their constituent cell types appeared very similar in mice with two, one or no copies of the OXTR gene.We conclude that OXT elicits Ca2+ signals via OXTR in murine taste buds. OXT-responsive cells are most likely a subset of Glial-like (Type I taste cells. OXT itself is not produced locally in taste tissue and is likely delivered through the circulation. Loss of OXTR does not grossly alter the morphology of any of the cell types contained in taste buds. Instead, we speculate that OXT-responsive Glial-like (Type I taste bud cells modulate taste signaling and afferent sensory output. Such modulation would complement central pathways of

  19. Oxytocin signaling in mouse taste buds.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sinclair, Michael S; Perea-Martinez, Isabel; Dvoryanchikov, Gennady; Yoshida, Masahide; Nishimori, Katsuhiko; Roper, Stephen D; Chaudhari, Nirupa

    2010-08-05

    The neuropeptide, oxytocin (OXT), acts on brain circuits to inhibit food intake. Mutant mice lacking OXT (OXT knockout) overconsume salty and sweet (i.e. sucrose, saccharin) solutions. We asked if OXT might also act on taste buds via its receptor, OXTR. Using RT-PCR, we detected the expression of OXTR in taste buds throughout the oral cavity, but not in adjacent non-taste lingual epithelium. By immunostaining tissues from OXTR-YFP knock-in mice, we found that OXTR is expressed in a subset of Glial-like (Type I) taste cells, and also in cells on the periphery of taste buds. Single-cell RT-PCR confirmed this cell-type assignment. Using Ca2+ imaging, we observed that physiologically appropriate concentrations of OXT evoked [Ca2+]i mobilization in a subset of taste cells (EC50 approximately 33 nM). OXT-evoked responses were significantly inhibited by the OXTR antagonist, L-371,257. Isolated OXT-responsive taste cells were neither Receptor (Type II) nor Presynaptic (Type III) cells, consistent with our immunofluorescence observations. We also investigated the source of OXT peptide that may act on taste cells. Both RT-PCR and immunostaining suggest that the OXT peptide is not produced in taste buds or in their associated nerves. Finally, we also examined the morphology of taste buds from mice that lack OXTR. Taste buds and their constituent cell types appeared very similar in mice with two, one or no copies of the OXTR gene. We conclude that OXT elicits Ca2+ signals via OXTR in murine taste buds. OXT-responsive cells are most likely a subset of Glial-like (Type I) taste cells. OXT itself is not produced locally in taste tissue and is likely delivered through the circulation. Loss of OXTR does not grossly alter the morphology of any of the cell types contained in taste buds. Instead, we speculate that OXT-responsive Glial-like (Type I) taste bud cells modulate taste signaling and afferent sensory output. Such modulation would complement central pathways of appetite

  20. Plasma oxytocin and personality traits in psychiatric outpatients.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bendix, Marie; Uvnäs-Moberg, Kerstin; Petersson, Maria; Gustavsson, Petter; Svanborg, Pär; Åsberg, Marie; Jokinen, Jussi

    2015-07-01

    The oxytocin system is regarded as being of relevance for social interaction. In spite of this, very few studies have investigated the relationship between oxytocin and personality traits in clinical psychiatric populations. We assessed the relationship between personality traits and plasma oxytocin levels in a population of 101 medication-free psychiatric outpatients (men = 37, women = 64). We used the Karolinska Scale of Personality (KSP) and diagnostic and symptomatic testing. Plasma oxytocin levels were analysed with a specific radioimmunoassay at inclusion and after one month for testing of stability. Plasma oxytocin levels were stable over time and did not differ between patients with or without personality disorders, nor were they related to severity of depressive or anxiety symptoms. The KSP factors Impulsiveness and Negative Emotionality were significant independent predictors of plasma oxytocin. A subscale analysis of these personality factors showed significant positive correlations between baseline plasma oxytocin and the KSP subscales monotony avoidance and psychic anxiety. The significant association between the KSP factor Impulsiveness and oxytocin levels observed at baseline was observed also one month later in men. These findings suggest that personality traits such as Impulsiveness and Negative emotionality which are linked to social functioning in several psychiatric disorders seem to be associated with endogenous plasma oxytocin levels. These variations in oxytocin levels might have an impact on social sensitivity or social motivation with possible gender differences. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  1. Sniffing and Oxytocin: Effects on Olfactory Memories.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stoop, Ron

    2016-05-04

    In this issue of Neuron, Oettl et al. (2016) show how oxytocin can boost processing of olfactory information in female rats by a top-downregulation from the anterior olfactory nucleus onto the main olfactory bulb. As a result, interactions with juvenile conspecifics receive more attention and are longer memorized. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  2. Labor Augmentation with Oxytocin Decreases Glutathione Level

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Naomi Schneid-Kofman

    2009-01-01

    Full Text Available Objective. To compare oxidative stress following spontaneous vaginal delivery with that induced by Oxytocin augmented delivery. Methods. 98 women recruited prior to labor. 57 delivered spontaneously, while 41 received Oxytocin for augmentation of labor. Complicated deliveries and high-risk pregnancies were excluded. Informed consent was documented. Arterial cord blood gases, levels of Hematocrit, Hemoglobin, and Bilirubin were studied. Glutathione (GSH concentration was measured by a spectroscopic method. Plasma and red blood cell (RBC levels of Malondialdehyde indicated lipid peroxidation. RBC uptake of phenol red denoted cell penetrability. SPSS data analysis was used. Results. Cord blood GSH was significantly lower in the Oxytocin group (2.3±0.55 mM versus 2.55±0.55 mM, =.01. No differences were found in plasma or RBC levels of MDA or in uptake of Phenol red between the groups. Conclusion. Lower GSH levels following Oxytocin augmentation indicate an oxidative stress, though selected measures of oxidative stress demonstrate no cell damage.

  3. Postnatal depression, oxytocin and maternal sensitivity

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Mah, Beth Lynette

    2015-01-01

    Intra nasal oxytocin administered to a population of mothers with a diagnosis of postnatal depression: -lowers their current mood -causes mothers to report that their infants are more difficult but their relationship with them is more positive -increases their protective response towards them in the

  4. Oxytocin, testosterone, and human social cognition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Crespi, Bernard J

    2016-05-01

    I describe an integrative social-evolutionary model for the adaptive significance of the human oxytocinergic system. The model is based on a role for this hormone in the generation and maintenance of social familiarity and affiliation across five homologous, functionally similar, and sequentially co-opted contexts: mothers with offspring, female and male mates, kin groups, individuals with reciprocity partners, and individuals within cooperating and competing social groups defined by culture. In each situation, oxytocin motivates, mediates and rewards the cognitive and behavioural processes that underlie the formation and dynamics of a more or less stable social group, and promotes a relationship between two or more individuals. Such relationships may be positive (eliciting neurological reward, reducing anxiety and thus indicating fitness-enhancing effects), or negative (increasing anxiety and distress, and thus motivating attempts to alleviate a problematic, fitness-reducing social situation). I also present evidence that testosterone exhibits opposite effects from oxytocin on diverse aspects of cognition and behaviour, most generally by favouring self-oriented, asocial and antisocial behaviours. I apply this model for effects of oxytocin and testosterone to understanding human psychological disorders centrally involving social behaviour. Reduced oxytocin and higher testosterone levels have been associated with under-developed social cognition, especially in autism. By contrast, some combination of oxytocin increased above normal levels, and lower testosterone, has been reported in a notable number of studies of schizophrenia, bipolar disorder and depression, and, in some cases, higher oxytocin involves maladaptively 'hyper-developed' social cognition in these conditions. This pattern of findings suggests that human social cognition and behaviour are structured, in part, by joint and opposing effects of oxytocin and testosterone, and that extremes of such joint

  5. Sex differences in methamphetamine seeking in rats: Impact of oxytocin

    OpenAIRE

    Cox, Brittney M.; Young, Amy B.; See, Ronald E.; Reichel, Carmela M.

    2013-01-01

    Previous evidence in an animal model of drug self-administration and drug seeking showed that acute oxytocin decreased methamphetamine (meth) seeking in male rats, suggesting potential clinical efficacy for the treatment of psychostimulant addiction. However, based on the well-established role of oxytocin in reproduction and pair bond formation, it is important to know how this effect extrapolates to females. Here, we tested whether oxytocin (1 mg/kg, IP) would decrease meth seeking in female...

  6. Oxytocin is a cardiovascular hormone

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gutkowska J.

    2000-01-01

    Full Text Available Oxytocin (OT, a nonapeptide, was the first hormone to have its biological activities established and chemical structure determined. It was believed that OT is released from hypothalamic nerve terminals of the posterior hypophysis into the circulation where it stimulates uterine contractions during parturition, and milk ejection during lactation. However, equivalent concentrations of OT were found in the male hypophysis, and similar stimuli of OT release were determined for both sexes, suggesting other physiological functions. Indeed, recent studies indicate that OT is involved in cognition, tolerance, adaptation and complex sexual and maternal behaviour, as well as in the regulation of cardiovascular functions. It has long been known that OT induces natriuresis and causes a fall in mean arterial pressure, both after acute and chronic treatment, but the mechanism was not clear. The discovery of the natriuretic family shed new light on this matter. Atrial natriuretic peptide (ANP, a potent natriuretic and vasorelaxant hormone, originally isolated from rat atria, has been found at other sites, including the brain. Blood volume expansion causes ANP release that is believed to be important in the induction of natriuresis and diuresis, which in turn act to reduce the increase in blood volume. Neurohypophysectomy totally abolishes the ANP response to volume expansion. This indicates that one of the major hypophyseal peptides is responsible for ANP release. The role of ANP in OT-induced natriuresis was evaluated, and we hypothesized that the cardio-renal effects of OT are mediated by the release of ANP from the heart. To support this hypothesis, we have demonstrated the presence and synthesis of OT receptors in all heart compartments and the vasculature. The functionality of these receptors has been established by the ability of OT to induce ANP release from perfused heart or atrial slices. Furthermore, we have shown that the heart and large vessels

  7. Dose-dependent social-cognitive effects of intranasal oxytocin delivered with novel Breath Powered device in adults with autism spectrum disorder: a randomized placebo-controlled double-blind crossover trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Quintana, D S; Westlye, L T; Hope, S; Nærland, T; Elvsåshagen, T; Dørum, E; Rustan, Ø; Valstad, M; Rezvaya, L; Lishaugen, H; Stensønes, E; Yaqub, S; Smerud, K T; Mahmoud, R A; Djupesland, P G; Andreassen, O A

    2017-05-23

    The neuropeptide oxytocin has shown promise as a treatment for symptoms of autism spectrum disorders (ASD). However, clinical research progress has been hampered by a poor understanding of oxytocin's dose-response and sub-optimal intranasal delivery methods. We examined two doses of oxytocin delivered using a novel Breath Powered intranasal delivery device designed to improve direct nose-to-brain activity in a double-blind, crossover, randomized, placebo-controlled trial. In a randomized sequence of single-dose sessions, 17 male adults with ASD received 8 international units (IU) oxytocin, 24IU oxytocin or placebo followed by four social-cognitive tasks. We observed an omnibus main effect of treatment on the primary outcome measure of overt emotion salience as measured by emotional ratings of faces (η 2 =0.18). Compared to placebo, 8IU treatment increased overt emotion salience (P=0.02, d=0.63). There was no statistically significant increase after 24IU treatment (P=0.12, d=0.4). The effects after 8IU oxytocin were observed despite no significant increase in peripheral blood plasma oxytocin concentrations. We found no significant effects for reading the mind in the eyes task performance or secondary outcome social-cognitive tasks (emotional dot probe and face-morphing). To our knowledge, this is the first trial to assess the dose-dependent effects of a single oxytocin administration in autism, with results indicating that a low dose of oxytocin can significantly modulate overt emotion salience despite minimal systemic exposure.

  8. Intranasal oxytocin reduces provoked symptoms in female patients with posttraumatic stress disorder despite exerting sympathomimetic and positive chronotropic effects in a randomized controlled trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sack, M; Spieler, D; Wizelman, L; Epple, G; Stich, J; Zaba, M; Schmidt, U

    2017-02-17

    Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is a severe psychiatric disease accompanied by neuroendocrine changes such as adrenergic overdrive and hence an elevated cardiovascular morbidity. Current pharmacotherapeutic options for PTSD are less than suboptimal, necessitating the development of PTSD-specific drugs. Although the neuropeptide oxytocin has been repeatedly suggested to be effective in PTSD treatment, there are, to our knowledge, only three studies that have assessed its efficacy on the intensity of PTSD symptoms in PTSD patients - among them one symptom provocation study in male veterans. To evaluate for the first time how oxytocin influences the intensity of provoked PTSD symptoms and, furthermore, cardiac control in female PTSD patients, we assessed their psychic and cardiac response to trauma-script exposure with and without oxytocin pretreatment in a double-blind randomized placebo-controlled study. We used a within-subject design to study 35 female PTSD patients who received oxytocin and placebo in a 2-week interval. Furthermore, we performed a small pilot study to get an idea of the relation of the stress-modulated endogenous oxytocin levels and heart rate - we correlated oxytocin serum levels with the heart rate of 10 healthy individuals before and after exposure to the Trier Social Stress Test (TSST). Intranasal oxytocin treatment was followed by a reduction of provoked total PTSD symptoms, in particular of avoidance, and by an elevation in baseline and maximum heart rate together with a drop in the pre-ejection period, a marker for sympathetic cardiac control. Furthermore, we found a positive correlation between endogenous oxytocin levels and heart rate both before and after TSST challenge in healthy control subjects. This study provides the first evidence that oxytocin treatment reduces the intensity of provoked PTSD symptoms in female PTSD patients. The small size of both samples and the heterogeneity of the patient sample restrict the

  9. Maternal and Paternal Plasma, Salivary, and Urinary Oxytocin and Parent-Infant Synchrony: Considering Stress and Affiliation Components of Human Bonding

    Science.gov (United States)

    Feldman, Ruth; Gordon, Ilanit; Zagoory-Sharon, Orna

    2011-01-01

    Studies in mammals have implicated the neuropeptide oxytocin (OT) in processes of bond formation and stress modulation, yet the involvement of OT in human bonding throughout life remains poorly understood. We assessed OT in the plasma, saliva, and urine of 112 mothers and fathers interacting with their 4-6-month-old infants. Parent-infant…

  10. Oxytocin: parallel processing in the social brain?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dölen, Gül

    2015-06-01

    Early studies attempting to disentangle the network complexity of the brain exploited the accessibility of sensory receptive fields to reveal circuits made up of synapses connected both in series and in parallel. More recently, extension of this organisational principle beyond the sensory systems has been made possible by the advent of modern molecular, viral and optogenetic approaches. Here, evidence supporting parallel processing of social behaviours mediated by oxytocin is reviewed. Understanding oxytocinergic signalling from this perspective has significant implications for the design of oxytocin-based therapeutic interventions aimed at disorders such as autism, where disrupted social function is a core clinical feature. Moreover, identification of opportunities for novel technology development will require a better appreciation of the complexity of the circuit-level organisation of the social brain. © 2015 The Authors. Journal of Neuroendocrinology published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd on behalf of British Society for Neuroendocrinology.

  11. Hybrid polyketide synthases

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Fortman, Jeffrey L.; Hagen, Andrew; Katz, Leonard; Keasling, Jay D.; Poust, Sean; Zhang, Jingwei; Zotchev, Sergey

    2016-05-10

    The present invention provides for a polyketide synthase (PKS) capable of synthesizing an even-chain or odd-chain diacid or lactam or diamine. The present invention also provides for a host cell comprising the PKS and when cultured produces the even-chain diacid, odd-chain diacid, or KAPA. The present invention also provides for a host cell comprising the PKS capable of synthesizing a pimelic acid or KAPA, and when cultured produces biotin.

  12. Oxytocin improves synchronisation in leader-follower interaction

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Gebauer, L.; Witek, M. A. G.; Hansen, N. C.

    2016-01-01

    , there was no effect when following a regular metronome or when both tappers were mutually adapting to each other. Furthermore, relative to their self-paced tapping partners, oxytocin followers were less variable than placebo followers. Our data suggests that oxytocin improves synchronisation to an unresponsive...

  13. Oxytocin: the neuropeptide of love reveals some of its secrets.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Neumann, Inga D

    2007-04-01

    The neuropeptide oxytocin is synthesized in the brain and released from neurohypophyseal terminals into the blood and within defined brain regions that regulate emotional, cognitive, and social behaviors. A recent study of CD38-/- mice (Jin et al., 2007) has demonstrated an essential role for the transmembrane receptor CD38 in secretion of oxytocin into the blood.

  14. Intranasal Oxytocin Failed to Affect Chimpanzee (Pan troglodytes) Social Behavior

    Science.gov (United States)

    Calcutt, Sarah E.; Burke, Kimberly; de Waal, Frans B. M.

    2017-01-01

    Oxytocin has been suggested as a treatment to promote positive social interactions in people with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD). However, it is difficult to test this effect outside of the laboratory in realistic social situations. One way to resolve this issue is to study behavioral changes in closely related species with complex social relationships, such as chimpanzees. Here, we use captive, socially housed chimpanzees to evaluate the effects of oxytocin in a socially complex environment. After administering intranasal oxytocin or a placebo to an individual chimpanzee (total n = 8), she was returned to her social group. An experimenter blind to the condition measured the subject's social behavior. We failed to find a behavioral difference between conditions. As one of the goals for oxytocin administration as a treatment for ASD is increasing prosocial behaviors during ‘real world’ encounters, it is problematic that we failed to detect behavioral changes in our closest living relatives. However, our null findings may be related to methodological challenges such as determining an effective dose of oxytocin for chimpanzees and how long oxytocin takes to cross the blood-brain barrier. Thus, more research on intranasal oxytocin dosing and uptake are needed to continue exploring whether oxytocin changes social behavior in naturalistic settings and as a treatment for ASD. PMID:28845444

  15. Oxytocin and the Biopsychology of Performance in Team Sports

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Pepping, Gert-Jan; Timmermans, Erik J.

    2012-01-01

    Little is known about the biopsychological underpinnings of expert performance in team sports. In this paper we show that there is a vast support for oxytocin as a neuropeptide involved in the encouragement of important processes linked to greater team performance in sport. We argue that oxytocin is

  16. Evolution of oxytocin pathways in the brain of vertebrates

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    H. Sophie Knobloch

    2014-02-01

    Full Text Available The central oxytocin system transformed tremendously during the evolution, thereby adapting to the expanding properties of species. In more basal vertebrates (paraphyletic taxon Anamnia, which includes agnathans, fish and amphibians, magnocellular neurosecretory neurons producing oxytocin, vasopressin and their homologs reside in the wall of the third ventricle of the hypothalamus composing a single hypothalamic structure, the preoptic nucleus. This nucleus further diverged in advanced vertebrates (monophyletic taxon Amniota, which includes reptiles, birds and mammals into the paraventricular and supraoptic nuclei with accessory nuclei between them. The individual magnocellular neurons underwent a process of transformation from primitive uni- or bipolar neurons into highly differentiated neurons. Due to these microanatomical and cytological changes, the ancient release modes of oxytocin into the cerebrospinal fluid were largely replaced by vascular release. However, the most fascinating feature of the progressive transformations of the oxytocin system has been the expansion of oxytocin axonal projections to forebrain regions. In the present review we provide a background on these evolutionary advancements. Furthermore, we draw attention to the non-synaptic axonal release in small and defined brain regions with the aim to clearly distinguish this way of oxytocin action from the classical synaptic transmission on one side and from dendritic release followed by a global diffusion on the other side. Finally, we will summarize the effects of oxytocin and its homologs on pro-social reproductive behaviors in representatives of the phylogenetic tree and will propose anatomically plausible pathways of oxytocin release contributing to these behaviors in basal vertebrates and amniots.

  17. Oxytocin augmentation: Poison or potion in the multipara? | Cluver ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Oxytocin is one of the most commonly used drugs in obstetric practice but it is also the drug associated with the most preventable adverse events in childbirth. In this review we look at the use of oxytocin augmentation in the multigravida. We look at the concept of whether the multigravida is different to the primigravida.

  18. Sex differences in the neural and behavioral response to intranasal oxytocin and vasopressin during human social interaction

    OpenAIRE

    Rilling James K.; DeMarco Ashley C.; Hackett Patrick D.; Chen Xu; Gautam Pritam; Stair Sabrina; Haroon Ebrahim; Thompson Richmond; Ditzen Beate; Patel Rajan; Pagnoni Giuseppe

    2014-01-01

    Both oxytocin (OT) and vasopressin (AVP) are known to modulate social behavior, and dysfunction in both systems has been postulated as a potential cause of certain psychiatric disorders that involve social behavioral deficits. In particular, there is growing interest in intranasal OT as a potential treatment for certain psychiatric disorders, and preliminary preclinical and clinical studies suggest efficacy in alleviating some of the associated symptoms. However, the vast majority of research...

  19. Oxytocin and Estrogen Receptor β in the Brain: An Overview.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Acevedo-Rodriguez, Alexandra; Mani, Shaila K; Handa, Robert J

    2015-01-01

    Oxytocin (OT) is a neuropeptide synthesized primarily by neurons of the paraventricular and supraoptic nuclei of the hypothalamus. These neurons have axons that project into the posterior pituitary and release OT into the bloodstream to promote labor and lactation; however, OT neurons also project to other brain areas where it plays a role in numerous brain functions. OT binds to the widely expressed OT receptor (OTR), and, in doing so, it regulates homeostatic processes, social recognition, and fear conditioning. In addition to these functions, OT decreases neuroendocrine stress signaling and anxiety-related and depression-like behaviors. Steroid hormones differentially modulate stress responses and alter OTR expression. In particular, estrogen receptor β activation has been found to both reduce anxiety-related behaviors and increase OT peptide transcription, suggesting a role for OT in this estrogen receptor β-mediated anxiolytic effect. Further research is needed to identify modulators of OT signaling and the pathways utilized and to elucidate molecular mechanisms controlling OT expression to allow better therapeutic manipulations of this system in patient populations.

  20. Oxytocin increases amygdala reactivity to threatening scenes in females.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lischke, Alexander; Gamer, Matthias; Berger, Christoph; Grossmann, Annette; Hauenstein, Karlheinz; Heinrichs, Markus; Herpertz, Sabine C; Domes, Gregor

    2012-09-01

    The neuropeptide oxytocin (OT) is well known for its profound effects on social behavior, which appear to be mediated by an OT-dependent modulation of amygdala activity in the context of social stimuli. In humans, OT decreases amygdala reactivity to threatening faces in males, but enhances amygdala reactivity to similar faces in females, suggesting sex-specific differences in OT-dependent threat-processing. To further explore whether OT generally enhances amygdala-dependent threat-processing in females, we used functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) in a randomized within-subject crossover design to measure amygdala activity in response to threatening and non-threatening scenes in 14 females following intranasal administration of OT or placebo. Participants' eye movements were recorded to investigate whether an OT-dependent modulation of amygdala activity is accompanied by enhanced exploration of salient scene features. Although OT had no effect on participants' gazing behavior, it increased amygdala reactivity to scenes depicting social and non-social threat. In females, OT may, thus, enhance the detection of threatening stimuli in the environment, potentially by interacting with gonadal steroids, such as progesterone and estrogen. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  1. Sex differences in methamphetamine seeking in rats: impact of oxytocin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cox, Brittney M; Young, Amy B; See, Ronald E; Reichel, Carmela M

    2013-10-01

    Previous evidence in an animal model of drug self-administration and drug seeking showed that acute oxytocin decreased methamphetamine (meth) seeking in male rats, suggesting potential clinical efficacy for the treatment of psychostimulant addiction. However, based on the well-established role of oxytocin in reproduction and pair bond formation, it is important to know how this effect extrapolates to females. Here, we tested whether oxytocin (1mg/kg, IP) would decrease meth seeking in female rats across various stages of the estrous cycle (Experiment 1). Freely cycling Long Evans female rats self-administered meth (IV) in 2-h daily sessions, followed by daily extinction sessions. Following extinction, rats received oxytocin (0, 0.3, or 1mg/kg, IP) 30min before a meth priming injection (1mg/kg, IP) to assess reinstatement of meth seeking. Next, we examined the effects of oxytocin on motivated meth- and sucrose-taking and seeking in male and female rats. In separate experiments, males and females self-administered meth (Experiment 2) or sucrose (Experiment 3) until responding was stabilized along a fixed ratio (FR) 5 schedule of reinforcement. Subsequently, rats received either oxytocin or vehicle prior to self-administration along a progressive ratio (PR) schedule of reinforcement. Rats were subsequently tested for cue-, meth-, and stress-induced reinstatement after pretreatment with oxytocin or vehicle. While oxytocin reduced meth seeking in females, we found that estrous cycle stage (as determined from vaginal cytology) did not influence meth-primed reinstatement or the ability of oxytocin to decrease reinstatement of meth seeking. Oxytocin reduced PR responding for meth only in females. Females responded more than males during cue-induced reinstatement of meth and sucrose seeking, and oxytocin reduced this responding only in meth females. In both sexes, oxytocin attenuated meth seeking in response to a meth prime and yohimbine (a pharmacological stressor). The

  2. Oxytocin and Social Cognition in Affective and Psychotic Disorders

    Science.gov (United States)

    Perez-Rodriguez, M. Mercedes; Mahon, Katie; Russo, Manuela; Ungar, Allison K.; Burdick, Katherine E.

    2014-01-01

    Impairments in social cognition are now recognized as core illness features in psychotic and affective disorders. Despite the significant disability caused by social cognitive abnormalities, treatments for this symptom dimension are lacking. Here, we describe the evidence demonstrating abnormalities in social cognition in schizophrenia, major depressive disorder, and bipolar disorder, as well as the neurobiology of social cognition including the role of oxytocin. We then review clinical trials of oxytocin administration in psychotic and affective disorders and the impact of this agent on social cognition. To date, several studies have demonstrated that oxytocin may improve social cognition in schizophrenia; too few studies have been conducted in affective disorders to determine the effect of oxytocin on social cognition in these disorders. Future work is needed to clarify which aspects of social cognition may be improved with oxytocin treatment in psychotic and affective disorders. PMID:25153535

  3. Stimulation of Oxytocin Receptor during Early Reperfusion Period Protects the Heart against Ischemia/Reperfusion Injury: the Role of Mitochondrial ATPSensitive Potassium Channel, Nitric Oxide, and Prostaglandins

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alireza Imani

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available Postconditioning is a simple and safe strategy for cardioprotection and infarct size limitation. Ourprevious study showed that oxytocin (OT exerts postconditioning effect on ischemic/reperfused isolated ratheart. The aim of this study was to investigate the involvement of OT receptor, mitochondrial ATP-sensitivepotassium channel (mKATP, nitric oxide (NO and cyclooxygenase (COX pathways in OTpostconditioning. Isolated rat hearts were divided into10 groups and underwent 30 min of regional ischemiafollowed by 120 min of reperfusion (n =6. In I/R (ischemia/reperfusion group, ischemia and reperfusionwere induced without any treatment. In OT group, oxytocin was perfused 5 min prior to beginning ofreperfusion for 25 min. In groups 3-6, atosiban (oxytocin receptor blocker, L-NAME (N-Nitro-L-ArginineMethyl Ester, non-specific nitric oxide synthase inhibitor, 5-HD (5-hydroxydecanoate, mKATP inhibitorand indomethacin (cyclooxygenase inhibitor were infused prior to oxytocin administration. In others, thementioned inhibitors were perfused prior to ischemia without oxytocin infusion. Infarct size, ventricularhemodynamic, coronary effluent, malondialdehyde (MDA and lactate dehydrogenase (LDH were measuredat the end of reperfusion. OT perfusion significantly reduced infarct size, MDA and LDH in comparison withIR group. Atosiban, 5HD, L-NAME and indomethacin abolished the postconditioning effect of OT. Perfusionof the inhibitors alone prior to ischemia had no effect on infarct size, hemodynamic parameters, coronaryeffluent and biochemical markers as compared with I/R group. In conclusion, this study indicates thatpostconditioning effects of OT are mediated by activation of mKATP and production of NO andProstaglandins (PGs.

  4. Life in groups: the roles of oxytocin in mammalian sociality

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Allison eAnacker

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available In recent decades, scientific understanding of the many roles of oxytocin in social behavior has advanced tremendously. The focus of this research has been on maternal attachments and reproductive pair-bonds, and much less is known about the substrates of sociality outside of reproductive contexts. It is now apparent that oxytocin influences many aspects of social behavior including recognition, trust, empathy, and other components of the behavioral repertoire of social species. This review provides a comparative perspective on the contributions of oxytocin to life in mammalian social groups. We provide background on the functions of oxytocin in maternal attachments and the early social environment, and give an overview of the role of oxytocin circuitry in support of different mating systems. We then introduce peer relationships in group-living rodents as a means for studying the importance of oxytocin in non-reproductive affiliative behaviors. We review species differences in oxytocin receptor distributions in solitary and group-living species of South American tuco-tucos and in African mole-rats, as well as singing mice. We discuss variation in oxytocin receptor levels with seasonal changes in social behavior in female meadow voles, and the effects of oxytocin manipulations on peer huddling behavior. Finally, we discuss avenues of promise for future investigation, and relate current findings to research in humans and non-human primates. There is growing evidence that oxytocin is involved in social selectivity, including increases in aggression toward social outgroups and decreased huddling with unfamiliar individuals, which may support existing social structures or relationships at the expense of others. Oxytocin’s effects reach beyond maternal attachment and pair bonds to play a role in affiliative behavior underlying friendships, organization of broad social structures, and maintenance of established social relationships with individuals

  5. A hypothesis on a role of oxytocin in the social mechanisms of speech and vocal learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Theofanopoulou, Constantina; Boeckx, Cedric; Jarvis, Erich D

    2017-08-30

    Language acquisition in humans and song learning in songbirds naturally happen as a social learning experience, providing an excellent opportunity to reveal social motivation and reward mechanisms that boost sensorimotor learning. Our knowledge about the molecules and circuits that control these social mechanisms for vocal learning and language is limited. Here we propose a hypothesis of a role for oxytocin (OT) in the social motivation and evolution of vocal learning and language. Building upon existing evidence, we suggest specific neural pathways and mechanisms through which OT might modulate vocal learning circuits in specific developmental stages. © 2017 The Authors.

  6. Oxytocin and social pretreatment have similar effects on processing of negative emotional faces in healthy adult males

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anna eKis

    2013-08-01

    Full Text Available Oxytocin has been shown to affect several aspects of human social cognition, including facial emotion processing. There is also evidence that social stimuli (such as eye-contact can effectively modulate endogenous oxytocin levels.In the present study we directly tested whether intranasal oxytocin administration and pre-treatment with social stimuli had similar effects on face processing at the behavioural level. Subjects (N=52 healthy adult males were presented with a set of faces with expressions of different valence (negative, neutral, positive following different types of pretreatment (oxytocin – OT or placebo – PL and social interaction – Soc or no social interaction – NSoc, N=13 in each and were asked to rate all faces for perceived emotion and trustworthiness. On the next day subjects’ recognition memory was tested on a set of neutral faces and additionally they had to again rate each face for trustworthiness and emotion.Subjects in both the OT and the Soc pretreatment group (as compared to the PL and to the NSoc groups gave higher emotion and trustworthiness scores for faces with negative emotional expression. Moreover, 24 h later, subjects in the OT and Soc groups (unlike in control groups gave lower trustworthiness scores for previously negative faces, than for faces previously seen as emotionally neutral or positive.In sum these results provide the first direct evidence of the similar effects of intranasal oxytocin administration and social stimulation on the perception of negative facial emotions as well as on the delayed recall of negative emotional information.

  7. Activation of presynaptic oxytocin receptors enhances glutamate release in the ventral hippocampus of prenatally restraint stressed rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mairesse, Jérôme; Gatta, Eleonora; Reynaert, Marie-Line; Marrocco, Jordan; Morley-Fletcher, Sara; Soichot, Marion; Deruyter, Lucie; Camp, Gilles Van; Bouwalerh, Hammou; Fagioli, Francesca; Pittaluga, Anna; Allorge, Delphine; Nicoletti, Ferdinando; Maccari, Stefania

    2015-12-01

    Oxytocin receptors are known to modulate synaptic transmission and network activity in the hippocampus, but their precise function has been only partially elucidated. Here, we have found that activation of presynaptic oxytocin receptor with the potent agonist, carbetocin, enhanced depolarization-evoked glutamate release in the ventral hippocampus with no effect on GABA release. This evidence paved the way for examining the effect of carbetocin treatment in "prenatally restraint stressed" (PRS) rats, i.e., the offspring of dams exposed to repeated episodes of restraint stress during pregnancy. Adult PRS rats exhibit an anxious/depressive-like phenotype associated with an abnormal glucocorticoid feedback regulation of the hypothalamus-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis, and, remarkably, with a reduced depolarization-evoked glutamate release in the ventral hippocampus. Chronic systemic treatment with carbetocin (1mg/kg, i.p., once a day for 2-3 weeks) in PRS rats corrected the defect in glutamate release, anxiety- and depressive-like behavior, and abnormalities in social behavior, in the HPA response to stress, and in the expression of stress-related genes in the hippocampus and amygdala. Of note, carbetocin treatment had no effect on these behavioral and neuroendocrine parameters in prenatally unstressed (control) rats, with the exception of a reduced expression of the oxytocin receptor gene in the amygdala. These findings disclose a novel function of oxytocin receptors in the hippocampus, and encourage the use of oxytocin receptor agonists in the treatment of stress-related psychiatric disorders in adult life. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  8. An Arabidopsis callose synthase

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ostergaard, Lars; Petersen, Morten; Mattsson, Ole

    2002-01-01

    in the Arabidopsis mpk4 mutant which exhibits systemic acquired resistance (SAR), elevated beta-1,3-glucan synthase activity, and increased callose levels. In addition, AtGsl5 is a likely target of salicylic acid (SA)-dependent SAR, since AtGsl5 mRNA accumulation is induced by SA in wild-type plants, while...... expression of the nahG salicylate hydroxylase reduces AtGsl5 mRNA levels in the mpk4 mutant. These results indicate that AtGsl5 is likely involved in callose synthesis in flowering tissues and in the mpk4 mutant....

  9. Monoterpene synthases from common sage (Salvia officinalis)

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Croteau, Rodney Bruce (Pullman, WA); Wise, Mitchell Lynn (Pullman, WA); Katahira, Eva Joy (Pullman, WA); Savage, Thomas Jonathan (Christchurch 5, NZ)

    1999-01-01

    cDNAs encoding (+)-bornyl diphosphate synthase, 1,8-cineole synthase and (+)-sabinene synthase from common sage (Salvia officinalis) have been isolated and sequenced, and the corresponding amino acid sequences has been determined. Accordingly, isolated DNA sequences (SEQ ID No:1; SEQ ID No:3 and SEQ ID No:5) are provided which code for the expression of (+)-bornyl diphosphate synthase (SEQ ID No:2), 1,8-cineole synthase (SEQ ID No:4) and (+)-sabinene synthase SEQ ID No:6), respectively, from sage (Salvia officinalis). In other aspects, replicable recombinant cloning vehicles are provided which code for (+)-bornyl diphosphate synthase, 1,8-cineole synthase or (+)-sabinene synthase, or for a base sequence sufficiently complementary to at least a portion of (+)-bornyl diphosphate synthase, 1,8-cineole synthase or (+)-sabinene synthase DNA or RNA to enable hybridization therewith. In yet other aspects, modified host cells are provided that have been transformed, transfected, infected and/or injected with a recombinant cloning vehicle and/or DNA sequence encoding (+)-bornyl diphosphate synthase, 1,8-cineole synthase or (+)-sabinene synthase. Thus, systems and methods are provided for the recombinant expression of the aforementioned recombinant monoterpene synthases that may be used to facilitate their production, isolation and purification in significant amounts. Recombinant (+)-bornyl diphosphate synthase, 1,8-cineole synthase and (+)-sabinene synthase may be used to obtain expression or enhanced expression of (+)-bornyl diphosphate synthase, 1,8-cineole synthase and (+)-sabinene synthase in plants in order to enhance the production of monoterpenoids, or may be otherwise employed for the regulation or expression of (+)-bornyl diphosphate synthase, 1,8-cineole synthase and (+)-sabinene synthase, or the production of their products.

  10. Factors associated with higher oxytocin requirements in labor.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frey, Heather A; Tuuli, Methodius G; England, Sarah K; Roehl, Kimberly A; Odibo, Anthony O; Macones, George A; Cahill, Alison G

    2015-09-01

    To identify clinical characteristics associated with high maximum oxytocin doses in women who achieve complete cervical dilation. A retrospective nested case-control study was performed within a cohort of all term women at a single center between 2004 and 2008 who reached the second stage of labor. Cases were defined as women who had a maximum oxytocin dose during labor >20 mu/min, while women in the control group had a maximum oxytocin dose during labor of ≤20 mu/min. Exclusion criteria included no oxytocin administration during labor, multiple gestations, major fetal anomalies, nonvertex presentation, and prior cesarean delivery. Multiple maternal, fetal, and labor factors were evaluated with univariable analysis and multivariable logistic regression. Maximum oxytocin doses >20 mu/min were administered to 108 women (3.6%), while 2864 women received doses ≤20 mu/min. Factors associated with higher maximum oxytocin dose after adjusting for relevant confounders included maternal diabetes, birthweight >4000 g, intrapartum fever, administration of magnesium, and induction of labor. Few women who achieve complete cervical dilation require high doses of oxytocin. We identified maternal, fetal and labor factors that characterize this group of parturients.

  11. Oxytocin in survivors of childhood-onset craniopharyngioma.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Daubenbüchel, Anna M M; Hoffmann, Anika; Eveslage, Maria; Özyurt, Jale; Lohle, Kristin; Reichel, Julia; Thiel, Christiane M; Martens, Henri; Geenen, Vincent; Müller, Hermann L

    2016-11-01

    Quality of survival of childhood-onset craniopharyngioma patients is frequently impaired by hypothalamic involvement or surgical lesions sequelae such as obesity and neuropsychological deficits. Oxytocin, a peptide hormone produced in the hypothalamus and secreted by posterior pituitary gland, plays a major role in regulation of behavior and body composition. In a cross-sectional study, oxytocin saliva concentrations were analyzed in 34 long-term craniopharyngioma survivors with and without hypothalamic involvement or treatment-related damage, recruited in the German Childhood Craniopharyngioma Registry, and in 73 healthy controls, attending the Craniopharyngioma Support Group Meeting 2014. Oxytocin was measured in saliva of craniopharyngioma patients and controls before and after standardized breakfast and associations with gender, body mass index, hypothalamic involvement, diabetes insipidus, and irradiation were analyzed. Patients with preoperative hypothalamic involvement showed similar oxytocin levels compared to patients without hypothalamic involvement and controls. However, patients with surgical hypothalamic lesions grade 1 (anterior hypothalamic area) presented with lower levels (p = 0.017) of oxytocin under fasting condition compared to patients with surgical lesion of posterior hypothalamic areas (grade 2) and patients without hypothalamic lesions (grade 0). Craniopharyngioma patients' changes in oxytocin levels before and after breakfast correlated (p = 0.02) with their body mass index. Craniopharyngioma patients continue to secrete oxytocin, especially when anterior hypothalamic areas are not involved or damaged, but oxytocin shows less variation due to nutrition. Oxytocin supplementation should be explored as a therapeutic option in craniopharyngioma patients with hypothalamic obesity and/or behavioral pathologies due to lesions of specific anterior hypothalamic areas. Clinical trial number: KRANIOPHARYNGEOM 2000/2007(NCT00258453; NCT01272622).

  12. The ventromedial hypothalamus oxytocin induces locomotor behavior regulated by estrogen.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Narita, Kazumi; Murata, Takuya; Matsuoka, Satoshi

    2016-10-01

    Our previous studies demonstrated that excitation of neurons in the rat ventromedial hypothalamus (VMH) induced locomotor activity. An oxytocin receptor (Oxtr) exists in the VMH and plays a role in regulating sexual behavior. However, the role of Oxtr in the VMH in locomotor activity is not clear. In this study we examined the roles of oxytocin in the VMH in running behavior, and also investigated the involvement of estrogen in this behavioral change. Microinjection of oxytocin into the VMH induced a dose-dependent increase in the running behavior in male rats. The oxytocin-induced running activity was inhibited by simultaneous injection of Oxtr-antagonist, (d(CH2)5(1), Try(Me)(2), Orn(8))-oxytocin. Oxytocin injection also induced running behavior in ovariectomized (OVX) female rats. Pretreatment of the OVX rats with estrogen augmented the oxytocin-induced running activity twofold, and increased the Oxtr mRNA in the VMH threefold. During the estrus cycle locomotor activity spontaneously increased in the dark period of proestrus. The Oxtr mRNA was up-regulated in the proestrus afternoon. Blockade of oxytocin neurotransmission by its antagonist before the onset of the dark period of proestrus decreased the following nocturnal locomotor activity. These findings demonstrate that Oxtr in the VMH is involved in the induction of running behavior and that estrogen facilitates this effect by means of Oxtr up-regulation, suggesting the involvement of oxytocin in the locomotor activity of proestrus female rats. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  13. Brief Report: Oxytocin Enhances Paternal Sensitivity to a Child with Autism--A Double-Blind Within-Subject Experiment with Intranasally Administered Oxytocin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Naber, Fabienne B. A.; Poslawsky, Irina E.; van Ijzendoorn, Marinus H.; van Engeland, Herman; Bakermans-Kranenburg, Marian J.

    2013-01-01

    Oxytocin seems associated with parenting style, and experimental work showed positive effects of intranasally administered oxytocin on parenting style of fathers. Here, the first double-blind, placebo-controlled, within-subject experiment with intranasal oxytocin administration to fathers of children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is…

  14. Genetic and epigenetic regulatory mechanisms of the oxytocin receptor gene (OXTR) and the (clinical) implications for social behavior.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tops, Sanne; Habel, Ute; Radke, Sina

    2018-03-12

    Oxytocin and the oxytocin receptor (OXTR) play an important role in a large variety of social behaviors. The oxytocinergic system interacts with environmental cues and is highly dependent on interindividual factors. Deficits in this system have been linked to mental disorders associated with social impairments, such as autism spectrum disorder (ASD). This review focuses on the modulation of social behavior by alterations in two domains of the oxytocinergic system. We discuss genetic and epigenetic regulatory mechanisms and alterations in these mechanisms that were found to have clinical implications for ASD. We propose possible explanations how these alterations affect the biological pathways underlying the aberrant social behavior and point out avenues for future research. We advocate the need for integration studies that combine multiple measures covering a broad range of social behaviors and link these to genetic and epigenetic profiles. Copyright © 2018. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  15. Effects of Oxytocin Administration on Receiving Help.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Human, Lauren J; Woolley, Joshua D; Mendes, Wendy Berry

    2017-11-27

    Receiving help can be a "mixed blessing." Despite the many psychosocial benefits it can carry, it sometimes has negative psychological consequences, such as loss in self-esteem or enhanced guilt. It is, therefore, important to understand the factors that modify responses to receiving help from others. We explored the role of the hormone oxytocin (OT) on affective and social responses to receiving help, given the putative role of OT in social bonding and attunement. To this end, we manipulated whether help was received from a same-sex interaction partner (confederate) versus a control condition, crossed with a double-blind administration of intranasal OT (vs. placebo), and examined subjective and observer-rated participant responses to help. We observed significant interactions between OT and the help manipulation. In the placebo condition, receiving help from the interaction partner compared with the control condition had negative consequences, such that participants reported greater negative affect and came to view themselves and their interaction partners more negatively after interacting together on several tasks. What is important, however, is that OT administration buffered against these negative subjective responses to receiving help. Further, outside observers rated participants who received OT administration as expressing greater happiness and gratitude in response to help, relative to those who received placebo. In sum, in the context of receiving help from a stranger, oxytocin administration fostered more positive affective and social responses. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2017 APA, all rights reserved).

  16. Attachment style and oxytocin receptor gene variation interact in influencing social anxiety.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Notzon, S; Domschke, K; Holitschke, K; Ziegler, C; Arolt, V; Pauli, P; Reif, A; Deckert, J; Zwanzger, P

    2016-01-01

    Social anxiety has been suggested to be promoted by an insecure attachment style. Oxytocin is discussed as a mediator of trust and social bonding as well as a modulator of social anxiety. Applying a gene-environment (G × E) interaction approach, in the present pilot study the main and interactive effects of attachment styles and oxytocin receptor (OXTR) gene variation were probed in a combined risk factor model of social anxiety in healthy probands. Participants (N = 388; 219 females, 169 males; age 24.7 ± 4.7 years) were assessed for anxiety in social situations (Social Phobia and Anxiety Inventory) depending on attachment style (Adult Attachment Scale, AAS) and OXTR rs53576 A/G genotype. A less secure attachment style was significantly associated with higher social anxiety. This association was partly modulated by OXTR genotype, with a stronger negative influence of a less secure attachment style on social anxiety in A allele carriers as compared to GG homozygotes. The present pilot data point to a strong association of less secure attachment and social anxiety as well as to a gene-environment interaction effect of OXTR rs53576 genotype and attachment style on social anxiety possibly constituting a targetable combined risk marker of social anxiety disorder.

  17. Personality is Tightly Coupled to Vasopressin-Oxytocin Neuron Activity in a Gregarious Finch

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Aubrey M Kelly

    2014-02-01

    Full Text Available Nonapeptides of the vasopressin-oxytocin family modulate social processes differentially in relation to sex, species, behavioral phenotype, and human personality. However, the mechanistic bases for these differences are not well understood, in part because multidimensional personality structures remain to be described for common laboratory animals. Based upon principal components (PC analysis of extensive behavioral measures in social and nonsocial contexts, we now describe three complex dimensions of phenotype (personality for the zebra finch, a species that exhibits a human-like social organization that is based upon biparental nuclear families embedded within larger social groups. These dimensions can be characterized as Social competence/dominance, Gregariousness, and Anxiety. We further demonstrate that the phasic Fos response of nonapeptide neurons in the paraventricular nucleus of the hypothalamus and medial bed nucleus of the stria terminalis are significantly predicted by personality, sex, social context, and their interactions. Furthermore the behavioral PCs are each associated with a distinct suite of neural PCs that incorporate both peptide cell numbers and their phasic Fos responses, indicating that personality is reflected in complex patterns of neuromodulation arising from multiple peptide cell groups. These findings provide novel insights into the mechanisms underlying sex- and phenotype-specific modulation of behavior, and should be broadly relevant, given that vasopressin-oxytocin systems are strongly conserved across vertebrates.

  18. Oxytocin in survivors of childhood-onset craniopharyngioma

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Daubenbuechel, Anna M. M.; Hoffmann, Anika; Eveslage, Maria; Oezyurt, Jale; Lohle, Kristin; Reichel, Julia; Thiel, Christiane M.; Martens, Henri; Geenen, Vincent; Mueller, Hermann L.

    2016-01-01

    Quality of survival of childhood-onset craniopharyngioma patients is frequently impaired by hypothalamic involvement or surgical lesions sequelae such as obesity and neuropsychological deficits. Oxytocin, a peptide hormone produced in the hypothalamus and secreted by posterior pituitary gland, plays

  19. Oxytocin and the Biopsychology of Performance in Team Sports

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pepping, Gert-Jan; Timmermans, Erik J.

    2012-01-01

    Little is known about the biopsychological underpinnings of expert performance in team sports. In this paper we show that there is a vast support for oxytocin as a neuropeptide involved in the encouragement of important processes linked to greater team performance in sport. We argue that oxytocin is related to biopsychological processes aimed at convergence of emotions and moods between people, and in doing so it is a critical neuropeptide involved in the shaping of important team processes in sport such as trust, generosity, altruism, cohesion, cooperation, and social motivation, and also envy and gloating. Future research should examine the role of oxytocin in these essential components of sport performance. In particular, the link between oxytocin, emotional contagion and the cultivation of experiences of positive emotions is a worthwhile line of investigation for sport participation and development as well as high performance in sport. PMID:22997498

  20. Oxytocin in survivors of childhood-onset craniopharyngioma

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Daubenbuechel, Anna M. M.; Hoffmann, Anika; Eveslage, Maria; Oezyurt, Jale; Lohle, Kristin; Reichel, Julia; Thiel, Christiane M.; Martens, Henri; Geenen, Vincent; Mueller, Hermann L.

    Quality of survival of childhood-onset craniopharyngioma patients is frequently impaired by hypothalamic involvement or surgical lesions sequelae such as obesity and neuropsychological deficits. Oxytocin, a peptide hormone produced in the hypothalamus and secreted by posterior pituitary gland, plays

  1. Oxytocin and the biopsychology of performance in team sports.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pepping, Gert-Jan; Timmermans, Erik J

    2012-01-01

    Little is known about the biopsychological underpinnings of expert performance in team sports. In this paper we show that there is a vast support for oxytocin as a neuropeptide involved in the encouragement of important processes linked to greater team performance in sport. We argue that oxytocin is related to biopsychological processes aimed at convergence of emotions and moods between people, and in doing so it is a critical neuropeptide involved in the shaping of important team processes in sport such as trust, generosity, altruism, cohesion, cooperation, and social motivation, and also envy and gloating. Future research should examine the role of oxytocin in these essential components of sport performance. In particular, the link between oxytocin, emotional contagion and the cultivation of experiences of positive emotions is a worthwhile line of investigation for sport participation and development as well as high performance in sport.

  2. Empathy toward strangers triggers oxytocin release and subsequent generosity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barraza, Jorge A; Zak, Paul J

    2009-06-01

    Empathy is related to a variety of prosocial behaviors, but the brain mechanisms producing the experience of empathy have not been fully characterized. This study investigated whether the experience of empathy raises oxytocin levels and affects subsequent generosity toward strangers. Short video clips of an emotional scene and an unemotional scene were used as stimuli. Participants rated the emotions they experienced and then played a $40 ultimatum game to gauge their generosity. We found that empathy was associated with a 47% increase in oxytocin from baseline. We also found the empathy-oxytocin response was stronger in women than in men. Higher levels of empathy were also associated with more generous monetary offers toward strangers in the ultimatum game. Our findings provide the first evidence that oxytocin is a physiologic signature for empathy and that empathy mediates generosity.

  3. Intranasal Oxytocin Normalizes Amygdala Functional Connectivity in Posttraumatic Stress Disorder

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Koch, Saskia B. J.; van Zuiden, Mirjam; Nawijn, Laura; Frijling, Jessie L.; Veltman, Dick J.; Olff, Miranda

    2016-01-01

    The neuropeptide oxytocin (OT) has been suggested as a promising pharmacological agent for medication-enhanced psychotherapy in posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) because of its anxiolytic and prosocial properties. We therefore investigated the behavioral and neurobiological effects of a single

  4. Oxytocin use in South Africa — a review

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Nicky

    2005-06-28

    Jun 28, 2005 ... The aim of this study was to examine the use of oxytocin by obstetricians ... Use with grand multipara ... Labour is induced when delivery will benefit the health of ..... intensive nursing. ... No one used auscultation exclusively in.

  5. Oxytocin and the Biopsychology of Performance in Team Sports

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gert-Jan Pepping

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Little is known about the biopsychological underpinnings of expert performance in team sports. In this paper we show that there is a vast support for oxytocin as a neuropeptide involved in the encouragement of important processes linked to greater team performance in sport. We argue that oxytocin is related to biopsychological processes aimed at convergence of emotions and moods between people, and in doing so it is a critical neuropeptide involved in the shaping of important team processes in sport such as trust, generosity, altruism, cohesion, cooperation, and social motivation, and also envy and gloating. Future research should examine the role of oxytocin in these essential components of sport performance. In particular, the link between oxytocin, emotional contagion and the cultivation of experiences of positive emotions is a worthwhile line of investigation for sport participation and development as well as high performance in sport.

  6. Gender differences in oxytocin-associated disruption of decision bias during emotion perception.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lynn, Spencer K; Hoge, Elizabeth A; Fischer, Laura E; Barrett, Lisa Feldman; Simon, Naomi M

    2014-09-30

    Oxytocin is associated with differences in the perception of and response to socially mediated information, such as facial expressions. Across studies, however, oxytocin׳s effect on emotion perception has been inconsistent. Outside the laboratory, emotion perception involves interpretation of perceptual uncertainty and assessment of behavioral risk. An account of these factors is largely missing from studies of oxytocin׳s effect on emotion perception and might explain inconsistent results across studies. Of relevance, studies of oxytocin׳s effect on learning and decision-making indicate that oxytocin attenuates risk aversion. We used the probability of encountering angry faces and the cost of misidentifying them as not angry to create a risky environment wherein bias to categorize faces as angry would maximize point earnings. Consistent with an underestimation of the factors creating risk (i.e., encounter rate and cost), men given oxytocin exhibited a worse (i.e., less liberal) response bias than men given placebo. Oxytocin did not influence women׳s performance. These results suggest that oxytocin may impair men׳s ability to adapt to changes in risk and uncertainty when introduced to novel or changing social environments. Because oxytocin also influences behavior in non-social realms, oxytocin pharmacotherapy could have unintended consequences (i.e., risk-prone decision-making) while nonetheless normalizing pathological social interaction. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  7. Oxytocin and the Biopsychology of Performance in Team Sports

    OpenAIRE

    Pepping, Gert-Jan; Timmermans, Erik J.

    2012-01-01

    Little is known about the biopsychological underpinnings of expert performance in team sports. In this paper we show that there is a vast support for oxytocin as a neuropeptide involved in the encouragement of important processes linked to greater team performance in sport. We argue that oxytocin is related to biopsychological processes aimed at convergence of emotions and moods between people, and in doing so it is a critical neuropeptide involved in the shaping of important team processes i...

  8. Hypothalamic oxytocin mediates social buffering of the stress response.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, Adam S; Wang, Zuoxin

    2014-08-15

    While stressful life events can enhance the risk of mental disorders, positive social interactions can propagate good mental health and normal behavioral routines. Still, the neural systems that promote these benefits are undetermined. Oxytocin is a hormone involved in social behavior and stress; thus, we focus on the impact that social buffering has on the stress response and the governing effects of oxytocin. Female prairie voles (Microtus ochrogaster) were exposed to 1 hour immobilization stress and then recovered alone or with their male partner to characterize the effect of social contact on the behavioral, physiological, and neuroendocrine stress response. In addition, we treated immobilized female voles recovering alone with oxytocin or vehicle and female voles recovering with their male partner with a selective oxytocin receptor antagonist or vehicle. Group sizes varied from 6 to 8 voles (N = 98 total). We found that 1 hour immobilization increased anxiety-like behaviors and circulating levels of corticosterone, a stress hormone, in female prairie voles recovering alone but not the female prairie voles recovering with their male partner. This social buffering by the male partner on biobehavioral responses to stress was accompanied by increased oxytocin release in the paraventricular nucleus of the hypothalamus. Intra-paraventricular nucleus oxytocin injections reduced behavioral and corticosterone responses to immobilization, whereas injections of an oxytocin receptor antagonist blocked the effects of the social buffering. Together, our data demonstrate that paraventricular nucleus oxytocin mediates the social buffering effects on the stress response and thus may be a target for treatment of stress-related disorders. Published by Society of Biological Psychiatry on behalf of Society of Biological Psychiatry.

  9. The human oxytocin gene promoter is regulated by estrogens.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Richard, S; Zingg, H H

    1990-04-15

    Gonadal steroids affect brain function primarily by altering the expression of specific genes, yet the specific mechanisms by which neuronal target genes undergo such regulation are unknown. Recent evidence suggests that the expression of the neuropeptide gene for oxytocin (OT) is modulated by estrogens. We therefore examined the possibility that this regulation occurred via a direct interaction of the estrogen-receptor complex with cis-acting elements flanking the OT gene. DNA-mediated gene transfer experiments were performed using Neuro-2a neuroblastoma cells and chimeric plasmids containing portions of the human OT gene 5'-glanking region linked to the chloramphenicol acetyltransferase gene. We identified a 19-base pair region located at -164 to -146 upstream of the transcription start site which is capable of conferring estrogen responsiveness to the homologous as well as to a heterologous promoter. The hormonal response is strictly dependent on the presence of intracellular estrogen receptors, since estrogen induced stimulation occurred only in Neuro-2a cells co-transfected with an expression vector for the human estrogen receptor. The identified region contains a novel imperfect palindrome (GGTGACCTTGACC) with sequence similarity to other estrogen response elements (EREs). To define cis-acting elements that function in synergism with the ERE, sequences 3' to the ERE were deleted, including the CCAAT box, two additional motifs corresponding to the right half of the ERE palindrome (TGACC), as well as a CTGCTAA heptamer similar to the "elegans box" found in Caenorhabditis elegans. Interestingly, optimal function of the identified ERE was fully independent of these elements and only required a short promoter region (-49 to +36). Our studies define a molecular mechanism by which estrogens can directly modulate OT gene expression. However, only a subset of OT neurons are capable of binding estrogens, therefore, direct action of estrogens on the OT gene may be

  10. Labor stimulation with oxytocin: effects on obstetrical and neonatal outcomes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pedro Hidalgo-Lopezosa

    Full Text Available Abstract Objective: to evaluate the effects of labor stimulation with oxytocin on maternal and neonatal outcomes. Method: descriptive and analytical study with 338 women who gave birth at a tertiary hospital. Obstetric and neonatal variables were measured and compared in women submitted and non-submitted to stimulation with oxytocin. Statistics were performed using Chi-square test, Fisher exact test, Student t-test; and crude Odds Ratio with 95% confidence interval were calculated. A p < 0.05 was considered statistically significant. Results: stimulation with oxytocin increases the rates of cesarean sections, epidural anesthesia and intrapartum maternal fever in primiparous and multiparous women. It has also been associated with low pH values of umbilical cord blood and with a shorter duration of the first stage of labor in primiparous women. However, it did not affect the rates of 3rd and 4th degree perineal lacerations, episiotomies, advanced neonatal resuscitation, 5-minute Apgar scores and meconium. Conclusion: stimulation with oxytocin should not be used systematically, but only in specific cases. These findings provide further evidence to health professionals and midwives on the use of oxytocin during labor. Under normal conditions, women should be informed of the possible effects of labor stimulation with oxytocin.

  11. Effects of Exogenous Oxytocin on Embryonic Survival in Cows

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. Yildiz

    2006-01-01

    Full Text Available The aim of this study was to evaluate the effect of oxytocin on embryonic survival in dairy cows. Pregnancy was verified using the early pregnancy factor (EPF activity on Day 4 after artificial insemination (AI. Pregnant cows were randomly allotted to two groups: treated (n = 8 and control (n = 8. Oxytocin (100 IU, 5 ml, DIF Turkey was administered twice daily by intravenous injections to treated cows and sterile saline (5 ml to control cows immediately before milking on days 4 to 7 after AI. Blood samples were taken via jugular vein every day from day 4 to 8 and every other day until Day 20 following insemination to evaluate the effect of oxytocin on embryonic survival. The embryonic loss was diagnosed in 3 of the 8 cows treated with oxytocin, and embryonic survival rate was 62.5% in this group versus 87.5% in controls. Short cycles occurred in 37.5% of oxytocin-treated cows. At the same time their serum progesterone concentrations rose more slowly than in controls. It was concluded that cows administered oxytocin on days 4 to 7 after insemination are at a higher risk of pregnancy loss.

  12. Randomised controlled trial of oxytocin alone versus oxytocin and ergometrine in active management of third stage of labour.

    OpenAIRE

    McDonald, S J; Prendiville, W J; Blair, E

    1993-01-01

    OBJECTIVE--To compare intramuscular oxytocin alone and intramuscular oxytocin with ergometrine (Syntometrine) for their effect in reducing the risk of postpartum haemorrhage when both are used as part of the active management of the third stage of labour. DESIGN--Double blind, randomised controlled trial. SETTING--Two metropolitan teaching hospitals in Perth, Western Australia. SUBJECTS--All women who expected a vaginal birth during the period of the trial. Informed consent was obtained. MAIN...

  13. Correlation between oxytocin neuronal sensitivity and oxytocin receptor binding: An electrophysiological and autoradiographical study comparing rat and guinea pig hippocampus

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Raggenbass, M.; Tribollet, E.; Dubois-Dauphin, M.; Dreifuss, J.J.

    1989-01-01

    In transverse hippocampal slices from rat and guinea pig brains, the authors obtained unitary extracellular recordings from nonpyramidal neurones located in or near the stratum pyramidale in the CA1 field and in the transition region between the CA1 and the subiculum. In rats, these neurones responded to oxytocin at 50-1,000 nM by a reversible increase in firing rate. The oxytocin-induced excitation was suppressed by a synthetic structural analogue that acts as a potent, selective antioxytocic on peripheral receptors. Nonpyramidal neurones were also excited by carbachol at 0.5-10 μM. The effect of this compound was postsynaptic and was blocked by the muscarinic antagonist atropine. In guinea pigs, by contrast, nonpyramidal neurones were unaffected by oxytocin, although they were excited by carbachol. Light microscopic autoradiography, carried out using a radioiodinated selective antioxytocic as a ligand, revealed labeling in the subiculum and in the CA1 area of the hippocampus of rats, whereas no oxytocin-binding sites were detected in the hippocampus of guinea pigs. The results indicate (i) that a hippocampal action of oxytocin is species-dependent and (ii) that a positive correlation exists between neuronal responsiveness to oxytocin and the presence in the hippocampus of high-affinity binding sites for this peptide

  14. Physicians' subjectivity in evaluating oxytocin challenge tests.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peck, T M

    1980-07-01

    Five physicians subspecializing in maternal-fetal medicine individually evaluated 50 oxytocin challenge tests (OCTs), of which 33 were originally read as positive. There was considerable disagreement among the study physicians (SPs) such that 2 SPs would agree, on the average, only 52% of the time on any one OCT. The SPs were also asked to evaluate fetal heart rate (FHR) reactivity patterns, if present. Again, there was great disagreement. When the majority (3 of 5 or more) of SPs agreed on the OCT result and/or reactivity, there was reasonable correlation with neonatal outcome, indicating the validity of the physiologic premise of the test. In particular, the presence or absence of FHR accelerations with fetal motion, regardless of the OCT reading, correlated extremely well with eventual neonatal outcome. This indicates that the most significant variable in antepartum FHR monitoring is the FHR acceleration pattern.

  15. Radioimmunoassay of urine oxytocin in man

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Zebidi, A.; Geelen, G.; Allevard, A.M.; Sempore, B.; Jarsaillon, E.; Meunier, C.; Gharib, C.

    1978-01-01

    A radioimmunoassay (RIA) for oxytocin (OT) in urine is described. 125 I-OT was prepared, and antibodies were raised in rabbits against OT coupled to bovine serumalbumine. This allowed us to set up a RIA for OT which limit of detection is 1.25 pg/tube (0.6 μU). The use of an extraction procedure using CG 50 Amberlite is essential. The recovery after extraction reaches 70.5 %. pH 5 is the optimum pH were urine samples must be stored. The superposition of the elution peak of endogenous OT on that of exogenous hormone is an argument in favour of the validity of such an extraction procedure. Daily urinary excretion of OT reaches 9.58 mU +- 3.48 in 18 healthy young men [fr

  16. The radioimmunoassay of plasma oxytocin in pregnancy and at parturition

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kogure, Satohisa

    1976-01-01

    The titer of the antiserum obtained by inoculating oxytocin-bovine serum albumin antigen into mature male rabbits was 1:64,000 in the final dilution, and the rate of conjugation with labeled-oxytocin was 34%. The cross reaction rate of the antiserum was 0.01% or below, both for lysine vasopressin and arginine vasopressin. The sensitivity of the radioimmunoassay using this antiserum was 5μIU. When a known quantity of oxytocin was added to plasma for measurement, the mean recovery rate was about 93%. The blood oxytocin concentration was 6.1+-2.5μIU/ml (ml omitted hereafter) in the early stage of pregnancy, 12.5+-6.0μIU in the middle stage, and 27.0+-7.5μIU in the terminal stage. The oxytocin concentration in the maternal blood was 34.1+-4.9μIU in the second stage, the concentration in the umbilical arterial blood immediately after delivery 3.5+-5.3μIU, and that in the umbilical venous blood 30.0+-4.2μIU. In cases of caesarean section not in labor, the oxytocin concentration in the maternal blood was 27.1+-6.6μIU, that in the umbilical arterial blood 25.1+-5.4μIU, and that in the umbilical venous blood 25.4+-5.4μIU. In cases of caesarean section in labor, the oxytocin concentration in the maternal blood was 37.1+-7.1μIU, that in the umbilical arterial blood 31.4+-6.7μIU, and that in the umbilical venous blood 27.0+-7.8μIU. The half-life of the oxytocin in the peripheral blood in cases injected with oxytocin was 5-10 minutes. When prostaglandin F2α was administered intravenously, the oxytocin concentration in the peripheral blood was increased in cases in labor. (Chiba, N.)

  17. Plasma oxytocin during third stage of labour: comparison of natural and active management.

    OpenAIRE

    Thornton, S.; Davison, J. M.; Baylis, P. H.

    1988-01-01

    The incidences of postpartum haemorrhage and retained placenta have decreased with the use of synthetic oxytocin and controlled cord traction. Whether such treatment is valuable is open to question because of the lack of clinical and physiological studies. The physiological effects of synthetic oxytocin on plasma concentrations of oxytocin and events during delivery were assessed. Plasma oxytocin concentration was determined in serial samples during the late second stage and throughout the th...

  18. Oxytocin signaling in the medial amygdala is required for sex discrimination of social cues

    OpenAIRE

    Yao, Shenqin; Bergan, Joseph; Lanjuin, Anne; Dulac, Catherine

    2017-01-01

    eLife digest Oxytocin is a hormone that promotes milk production, contractions during childbirth, and many social interactions in humans and other creatures. It has also been implicated in conditions like autism or schizophrenia, which show altered social interactions. Oxytocin is made and released by cells in the brain called neurons. The oxytocin-producing neurons are clustered in a brain region called the hypothalamus, and oxytocin can act over a long distance in the brain or in the body. ...

  19. Oxytocin Differentially Affects Sucrose Taking and Seeking in Male and Female Rats

    OpenAIRE

    Zhou, Luyi; Ghee, Shannon M.; See, Ronald E.; Reichel, Carmela M.

    2015-01-01

    Oxytocin has a modulatory role in natural and drug reward processes. While the role of oxytocin in pair bonding and reproduction has been extensively studied, sex differences in conditioned and unconditioned behavioral responses to oxytocin treatment have not been fully characterized. Here, we determined whether male and female rats would show similar dose response curves in response to acute oxytocin on measures of locomotor activity, sucrose seeking, and sucrose intake. Male and freely cycl...

  20. Oxytocin is required for nursing but is not essential for parturition or reproductive behavior.

    OpenAIRE

    Nishimori, K; Young, L J; Guo, Q; Wang, Z; Insel, T R; Matzuk, M M

    1996-01-01

    Oxytocin, a neurohypophyseal hormone, has been traditionally considered essential for mammalian reproduction. In addition to uterine contractions during labor and milk ejection during nursing, oxytocin has been implicated in anterior pituitary function, paracrine effects in the testis and ovary and the neural control of maternal and sexual behaviors. To determine the essential role(s) of oxytocin in mammalian reproductive function, mice deficient in oxytocin have been generated using embryoni...

  1. Oxytocin and social affiliation in humans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Feldman, Ruth

    2012-03-01

    A conceptual model detailing the process of bio-behavioral synchrony between the online physiological and behavioral responses of attachment partners during social contact is presented as a theoretical and empirical framework for the study of affiliative bonds. Guided by an ethological behavior-based approach, we suggest that micro-level social behaviors in the gaze, vocal, affective, and touch modalities are dynamically integrated with online physiological processes and hormonal response to create dyad-specific affiliations. Studies across multiple attachments throughout life are presented and demonstrate that the extended oxytocin (OT) system provides the neurohormonal substrate for parental, romantic, and filial attachment in humans; that the three prototypes of affiliation are expressed in similar constellations of social behavior; and that OT is stable over time within individuals, is mutually-influencing among partners, and that mechanisms of cross-generation and inter-couple transmission relate to coordinated social behavior. Research showing links between peripheral and genetic markers of OT with concurrent parenting and memories of parental care; between administration of OT to parent and infant's physiological readiness for social engagement; and between neuropeptides and the online synchrony of maternal and paternal brain response in social-cognitive and empathy networks support the hypothesis that human attachment develops within the matrix of biological attunement and close behavioral synchrony. The findings have conceptual implications for the study of inter-subjectivity as well as translational implications for the treatment of social disorders originating in early childhood, such as autism spectrum disorders, or those associated with disruptions to early bonding, such as postpartum depression or child abuse and neglect. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled Oxytocin, Vasopressin, and Social Behavior. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Inc. All

  2. Taking the Focus Away from the Self: Low Individualism Mediates the Effect of Oxytocin on Creativity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pfundmair, Michaela; Frey, Dieter; Hodgson, Timothy L.

    2017-01-01

    Recently, it has been shown that the hormone oxytocin can enable creative cognition. The aim of this investigation was to examine the psychological mechanism via which oxytocin influences creativity. Two opposing explanatory approaches suggested by previous research were investigated: It was predicted that the effect of oxytocin on creativity…

  3. Oxytocin differentially affects sucrose taking and seeking in male and female rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhou, Luyi; Ghee, Shannon M; See, Ronald E; Reichel, Carmela M

    2015-04-15

    Oxytocin has a modulatory role in natural and drug reward processes. While the role of oxytocin in pair bonding and reproduction has been extensively studied, sex differences in conditioned and unconditioned behavioral responses to oxytocin treatment have not been fully characterized. Here, we determined whether male and female rats would show similar dose response curves in response to acute oxytocin on measures of locomotor activity, sucrose seeking, and sucrose intake. Male and freely cycling female rats received vehicle or oxytocin (0.1, 0.3, 1, 3mg/kg, IP) injections before behavioral tests designed to assess general motor activity, as well as sucrose self-administration and seeking. Lower doses of oxytocin decreased motor activity in a novel environment in females relative to males. Likewise, lower doses of oxytocin in females decreased responding for sucrose during maintenance of sucrose self-administration and reinstatement to sucrose-conditioned cues. However, sucrose seeking in response to a sucrose prime was only decreased by the highest oxytocin dose in both sexes. In general, oxytocin had similar effects in both sexes. However, females were more sensitive to lower doses of oxytocin than males. These findings are consistent with the notion that oxytocin regulates many of the same behaviors in males and females, but that the effects are typically more profound in females. Therapeutic use of oxytocin should include sex as a factor in determining dose regimens. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  4. Aspartate buffer and divalent metal ions affect oxytocin in aqueous solution and protect it from degradation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Avanti, Christina; Oktaviani, Nur Alia; Hinrichs, Wouther L.J.

    2013-01-01

    Oxytocin is a peptide drug used to induce labor and prevent bleeding after childbirth. Due to its instability, transport and storage of oxytocin formulations under tropical conditions is problematic. In a previous study, we have found that the stability of oxytocin in aspartate buffered formulati...

  5. Endogenous peripheral oxytocin measures can give insight into the dynamics of social relationships: a review

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Catherine eCrockford

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available The neuropeptide, oxytocin, receives increasing attention due to its role in stress regulation and promoting affiliative social behavior. Research across mammals points to a complex pattern whereby social context and individual differences moderate the endogenous release of oxytocin as well as moderate the effects that exogenous administration of oxytocin has on social behavior. In addition to measuring central release of oxytocin or exogenous administration of oxytocin on social behavior, for example via inhalation, it is becoming evident that measuring endogenous peripheral oxytocin levels is an additional, informative tool. This is particularly so when oxytocin can be measured from non-invasively collected samples, such as in urine. Although it is still debated as to whether peripheral measures of oxytocin relate to central measures of oxytocin, anatomical and functional evidence indicate a link between the two. We argue that non-invasive measures of peripheral oxytocin hold several research and potential therapeutic advantages. Principally, study subjects can be sampled repeatedly in different social contexts where social history between interaction partners can be taken into account. Several hormones can be measured simultaneously allowing examination of the influence of oxytocin interactions with other hormones on motivational states. Valence of relationships as well as changes in relationship quality over time can be measured through endocrine responses. Also, the approach of identifying natural social contexts that are associated with endogenous oxytocin release offers the potential of behavioral therapy as an addition or alternative to chemical therapy in the field of mental health.

  6. Oxytocin effects on complex brain networks are moderated by experiences of maternal love withdrawal

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Riem, M.M.E.; van IJzendoorn, M.H.; Tops, M.; Boksem, M.A.S.; Rombouts, S.A.R.B.; Bakermans-Kranenburg, M.J.

    2013-01-01

    The neuropeptide oxytocin has been implicated in a variety of social processes. However, recent studies indicate that oxytocin does not enhance prosocial behavior in all people in all circumstances. Here, we investigate effects of intranasal oxytocin administration on intrinsic functional brain

  7. Aspartate buffer and divalent metal ions affect oxytocin in aqueous solution and protect it from degradation

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Avanti, Christina; Oktaviani, Nur Alia; Hinrichs, Wouter L J; Frijlink, Henderik W; Mulder, Frans A A

    2013-01-01

    Oxytocin is a peptide drug used to induce labor and prevent bleeding after childbirth. Due to its instability, transport and storage of oxytocin formulations under tropical conditions is problematic. In a previous study, we have found that the stability of oxytocin in aspartate buffered formulation

  8. Stress, sex, and addiction: potential roles of corticotropin-releasing factor, oxytocin, and arginine-vasopressin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bisagno, Verónica; Cadet, Jean Lud

    2014-09-01

    Stress sensitivity and sex are predictive factors for the development of neuropsychiatric disorders. Life stresses are not only risk factors for the development of addiction but also are triggers for relapse to drug use. Therefore, it is imperative to elucidate the molecular mechanisms underlying the interactions between stress and drug abuse, as an understanding of this may help in the development of novel and more effective therapeutic approaches to block the clinical manifestations of drug addiction. The development and clinical course of addiction-related disorders do appear to involve neuroadaptations within neurocircuitries that modulate stress responses and are influenced by several neuropeptides. These include corticotropin-releasing factor, the prototypic member of this class, as well as oxytocin and arginine-vasopressin that play important roles in affiliative behaviors. Interestingly, these peptides function to balance emotional behavior, with sexual dimorphism in the oxytocin/arginine-vasopressin systems, a fact that might play an important role in the differential responses of women and men to stressful stimuli and the specific sex-based prevalence of certain addictive disorders. Thus, this review aims to summarize (i) the contribution of sex differences to the function of dopamine systems, and (ii) the behavioral, neurochemical, and anatomical changes in brain stress systems.

  9. Increased Serum and Urinary Oxytocin Concentrations after Nasal Administration in Beagle Dogs

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrea Temesi

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available In recent years more and more studies have revealed the effect of extraneous oxytocin on the social behavior of dogs. The distribution of administered oxytocin in different physiologically relevant compartments is important because this knowledge forms the basis for the timing of behavior tests after the administration. Most behavioral studies rely on the non-invasive intranasal application of oxytocin. The aim of this study was to determine the time course of intranasal administered oxytocin secretion into blood and urine and also establish a connection between intranasal received oxytocin and urinary cortisol in dogs. In our experiment, four dogs received three puffs, 12 IU intranasal oxytocin treatment, two dogs received three puffs intranasal placebo treatment. Blood and urine samples were collected immediately prior to the administration then regularly during 4 h. After nasal oxytocin application, the serum oxytocin concentration increased, reached a maximum 15 min after the treatment and then rapidly returned to baseline levels 45 min later. The peak urinary oxytocin concentration occurred between 45 and 60 min after administration and returned to baseline levels slowly. We found considerable differences among individuals in the secretion of oxytocin in both the serum and the urinary oxytocin concentration measurements. Our results confirm that intranasally administered oxytocin passes into the blood stream. The time course of intranasally administered oxytocin secretion is similar to the time course of intravenously administered oxytocin secretion, and the peak values are also similar in both the serum and the urinary oxytocin concentration measurements, although there are large individual differences.

  10. Approaches Mediating Oxytocin Regulation of the Immune System.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Tong; Wang, Ping; Wang, Stephani C; Wang, Yu-Feng

    2016-01-01

    The hypothalamic neuroendocrine system is mainly composed of the neural structures regulating hormone secretion from the pituitary gland and has been considered as the higher regulatory center of the immune system. Recently, the hypothalamo-neurohypophysial system (HNS) emerged as an important component of neuroendocrine-immune network, wherein the oxytocin (OT)-secreting system (OSS) plays an essential role. The OSS, consisting of OT neurons in the supraoptic nucleus, paraventricular nucleus, their several accessory nuclei and associated structures, can integrate neural, endocrine, metabolic, and immune information and plays a pivotal role in the development and functions of the immune system. The OSS can promote the development of thymus and bone marrow, perform immune surveillance, strengthen immune defense, and maintain immune homeostasis. Correspondingly, OT can inhibit inflammation, exert antibiotic-like effect, promote wound healing and regeneration, and suppress stress-associated immune disorders. In this process, the OSS can release OT to act on immune system directly by activating OT receptors or through modulating activities of other hypothalamic-pituitary-immune axes and autonomic nervous system indirectly. However, our understandings of the role of the OSS in neuroendocrine regulation of immune system are largely incomplete, particularly its relationship with other hypothalamic-pituitary-immune axes and the vasopressin-secreting system that coexists with the OSS in the HNS. In addition, it remains unclear about the relationship between the OSS and peripherally produced OT in immune regulation, particularly intrathymic OT that is known to elicit central immunological self-tolerance of T-cells to hypophysial hormones. In this work, we provide a brief review of current knowledge of the features of OSS regulation of the immune system and of potential approaches that mediate OSS coordination of the activities of entire neuroendocrine-immune network.

  11. Low dose oxytocin delivered intranasally with Breath Powered device affects social-cognitive behavior: a randomized 4-way crossover trial with nasal cavity dimension assessment

    OpenAIRE

    Quintana, Daniel; Westlye, Lars Tjelta; Rustan, Øyvind; Tesli, Natalia; Poppy, Claire; Smevik, Hanne; Tesli, Martin Steen; Røine, Marianne; Mahmoud, Ramy; Smerud, Knut Terje; Djupesland, Per G.; Andreassen, Ole Andreas

    2015-01-01

    Despite the promise of intranasal oxytocin (OT) for modulating social behavior, recent work has provided mixed results. This may relate to suboptimal drug deposition achieved with conventional nasal sprays, inter-individual differences in nasal physiology and a poor understanding of how intranasal OT is delivered to the brain in humans. Delivering OT using a novel ?Breath Powered' nasal device previously shown to enhance deposition in intranasal sites targeted for nose-to-brain transport, we ...

  12. Emotion recognition and oxytocin in patients with schizophrenia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Averbeck, B. B.; Bobin, T.; Evans, S.; Shergill, S. S.

    2012-01-01

    Background Studies have suggested that patients with schizophrenia are impaired at recognizing emotions. Recently, it has been shown that the neuropeptide oxytocin can have beneficial effects on social behaviors. Method To examine emotion recognition deficits in patients and see whether oxytocin could improve these deficits, we carried out two experiments. In the first experiment we recruited 30 patients with schizophrenia and 29 age- and IQ-matched control subjects, and gave them an emotion recognition task. Following this, we carried out a second experiment in which we recruited 21 patients with schizophrenia for a double-blind, placebo-controlled cross-over study of the effects of oxytocin on the same emotion recognition task. Results In the first experiment we found that patients with schizophrenia had a deficit relative to controls in recognizing emotions. In the second experiment we found that administration of oxytocin improved the ability of patients to recognize emotions. The improvement was consistent and occurred for most emotions, and was present whether patients were identifying morphed or non-morphed faces. Conclusions These data add to a growing literature showing beneficial effects of oxytocin on social–behavioral tasks, as well as clinical symptoms. PMID:21835090

  13. Oxytocin receptor gene variation predicts subjective responses to MDMA.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bershad, Anya K; Weafer, Jessica J; Kirkpatrick, Matthew G; Wardle, Margaret C; Miller, Melissa A; de Wit, Harriet

    2016-12-01

    3,4-Methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA, "ecstasy") enhances desire to socialize and feelings of empathy, which are thought to be related to increased oxytocin levels. Thus, variation in the oxytocin receptor gene (OXTR) may influence responses to the drug. Here, we examined the influence of a single OXTR nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) on responses to MDMA in humans. Based on findings that carriers of the A allele at rs53576 exhibit reduced sensitivity to oxytocin-induced social behavior, we hypothesized that these individuals would show reduced subjective responses to MDMA, including sociability. In this three-session, double blind, within-subjects study, healthy volunteers with past MDMA experience (N = 68) received a MDMA (0, 0.75 mg/kg, and 1.5 mg/kg) and provided self-report ratings of sociability, anxiety, and drug effects. These responses were examined in relation to rs53576. MDMA (1.5 mg/kg) did not increase sociability in individuals with the A/A genotype as it did in G allele carriers. The genotypic groups did not differ in responses at the lower MDMA dose, or in cardiovascular or other subjective responses. These findings are consistent with the idea that MDMA-induced sociability is mediated by oxytocin, and that variation in the oxytocin receptor gene may influence responses to the drug.

  14. The influence of oxytocin on interpersonal rhythmic synchronization and social bonding

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Gebauer, Line; Witek, Maria; Hansen, Niels Chr.

    oxytocin. In this study we investigated the role of oxytocin on interpersonal rhythmic synchronization, and its relation to pro-social effects, using an interactive finger tapping setup. Pairs of two tapped together, and both participants in each pair received either oxytocin or a non-active placebo...... as nasal spray. Our preliminary analyses showed trends in which intranasally administered oxytocin improved interpersonal synchronization. In this poster we present the full data set and analysis of the effect of oxytocin on interpersonal synchronization and social bonding....

  15. Characterization of the oxytocin system regulating affiliative behavior in female prairie voles.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ross, H E; Cole, C D; Smith, Y; Neumann, I D; Landgraf, R; Murphy, A Z; Young, L J

    2009-09-15

    Oxytocin regulates partner preference formation and alloparental behavior in the socially monogamous prairie vole (Microtus ochrogaster) by activating oxytocin receptors in the nucleus accumbens of females. Mating facilitates partner preference formation, and oxytocin-immunoreactive fibers in the nucleus accumbens have been described in prairie voles. However, there has been no direct evidence of oxytocin release in the nucleus accumbens during sociosexual interactions, and the origin of the oxytocin fibers is unknown. Here we show for the first time that extracellular concentrations of oxytocin are increased in the nucleus accumbens of female prairie vole during unrestricted interactions with a male. We further show that the distribution of oxytocin-immunoreactive fibers in the nucleus accumbens is conserved in voles, mice and rats, despite remarkable species differences in oxytocin receptor binding in the region. Using a combination of site-specific and peripheral infusions of the retrograde tracer Fluorogold, we demonstrate that the nucleus accumbens oxytocin-immunoreactive fibers likely originate from paraventricular and supraoptic hypothalamic neurons. This distribution of retrogradely labeled neurons is consistent with the hypothesis that striatal oxytocin fibers arise from collaterals of magnocellular neurons of the neurohypophysial system. If correct, this may serve to coordinate peripheral and central release of oxytocin with appropriate behavioral responses associated with reproduction, including pair bonding after mating, and maternal responsiveness following parturition and during lactation.

  16. Targeting the Oxytocin System to Treat Addictive Disorders: Rationale and Progress to Date

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Mary R.; Rohn, Matthew C.H.; Tanda, Gianluigi; Leggio, Lorenzo

    2016-01-01

    The neuropeptide oxytocin plays a role in reward, stress, social affiliation, learning and memory processes. As such there is increasing interest in oxytocin as a potential treatment for addictions. The oxytocin system is itself altered by acute or chronic exposure to drugs of abuse. A large number of preclinical studies in rodents have investigated the effect of oxytocin on various drug-induced behaviors to determine whether oxytocin can reverse the neuroadaptations occurring with repeated drug and alcohol use. In addition, the mechanisms by which oxytocin acts to modify the behavioral response to drugs of abuse are beginning to be understood. More recently, a few small clinical studies have been conducted in cocaine, cannabis and alcohol dependence. This review summarizes the preclinical as well as clinical literature to date on the oxytocin system and its relevance to drug and alcohol addiction. PMID:26932552

  17. The role of oxytocin in familiarization-habituation responses to social novelty

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mattie eTops

    2013-10-01

    Full Text Available Stress or arousal responses to novel social contexts ease off when individuals get familiar with the social context. In the present study we investigated whether oxytocin is involved in this process of familiarization-habituation, as oxytocin is known to increase trust and decrease anxiety. Fifty-nine healthy female subjects took part in the same experimental procedure in two sessions separated by four weeks. In the first (novelty session state trust scores were significantly positively correlated with salivary oxytocin levels, while in the second (familiarity session state trust scores were significantly negatively correlated with salivary oxytocin levels. In a path model, oxytocin was associated with increased trust in the novelty session and trust was associated with decreased oxytocin levels in the familiarity session. The results are consistent with the idea that oxytocin decreases stress-to-novelty responses by promoting familiarization to novel social contexts.

  18. Investigation of Oxytocin Secretion in Anorexia Nervosa and Bulimia Nervosa: Relationships to Temperament Personality Dimensions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Monteleone, Alessio Maria; Scognamiglio, Pasquale; Volpe, Umberto; Di Maso, Virginia; Monteleone, Palmiero

    2016-01-01

    Published studies suggested an implication of oxytocin in some temperament characteristics of personality. Therefore, we measured oxytocin secretion in 23 women with anorexia nervosa (AN), 27 with bulimia nervosa (BN) and 19 healthy controls and explored the relationships between circulating oxytocin and patients' personality traits. Plasma oxytocin levels were significantly reduced in AN women but not in BN ones. In healthy women, the attachment subscale scores of the reward dependence temperament and the harm avoidance (HA) scores explained 82% of the variability in circulating oxytocin. In BN patients, plasma oxytocin resulted to be negatively correlated with HA, whereas no significant correlations emerged in AN patients. These findings confirm a dysregulation of oxytocin production in AN but not in BN and show, for the first time, a disruption of the associations between hormone levels and patients' temperament traits, which may have a role in certain deranged behaviours of eating disorder patients. Copyright © 2015 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd and Eating Disorders Association.

  19. Oxytocin increases the influence of public service advertisements.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pei-Ying Lin

    Full Text Available This paper presents a neurophysiologic model of effective public service advertisements (PSAs and reports two experiments that test the model. In Experiment 1, we show that after watching 16 PSAs participants who received oxytocin, compared to those given a placebo, donated to 57% more causes, donated 56% more money, and reported 17% greater concern for those in the ads. In Experiment 2, we measured adrenocorticotropin hormone (ACTH and oxytocin levels in blood before and after participants watched a PSA. As predicted by the model, donations occurred when participants had increases in both ACTH and oxytocin. Our results indicate that PSAs with social content that cause OT release will be more effective than those that do not. Our results also explain why some individuals do not respond to PSAs.

  20. Oxytocin increases the influence of public service advertisements.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lin, Pei-Ying; Grewal, Naomi Sparks; Morin, Christophe; Johnson, Walter D; Zak, Paul J

    2013-01-01

    This paper presents a neurophysiologic model of effective public service advertisements (PSAs) and reports two experiments that test the model. In Experiment 1, we show that after watching 16 PSAs participants who received oxytocin, compared to those given a placebo, donated to 57% more causes, donated 56% more money, and reported 17% greater concern for those in the ads. In Experiment 2, we measured adrenocorticotropin hormone (ACTH) and oxytocin levels in blood before and after participants watched a PSA. As predicted by the model, donations occurred when participants had increases in both ACTH and oxytocin. Our results indicate that PSAs with social content that cause OT release will be more effective than those that do not. Our results also explain why some individuals do not respond to PSAs.

  1. Providing straw to allow exploratory behaviour in a pig experimental system does not modify putative indicators of positive welfare: peripheral oxytocin and serotonin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marcet Rius, M; Cozzi, A; Bienboire-Frosini, C; Teruel, E; Chabaud, C; Monneret, P; Leclercq, J; Lafont-Lecuelle, C; Pageat, P

    2018-01-22

    Numerous studies have shown that providing straw to pigs can reduce undesirable behaviours such as aggression, tail biting and stereotypy. The measurement of various neuromodulators can be helpful in assessing the development of positive behaviours and overall animal welfare. The oxytocin release is frequently linked to positive emotions and positive welfare. It has been suggested that oxytocin modulates the serotoninergic system. This study aims to investigate the potential effect of straw provision in pigs on peripheral levels of oxytocin and serotonin. In total, 18 mini-pigs were involved in an exploratory study conducted in two parallel groups, Enriched (n=10) and Control (n=8) groups. Pigs were divided by group and housed in pens of two individuals. Straw was provided continuously only in Enriched group and renewed each day for 2 weeks. Two blood samples were drawn from each animal 5 to 10 min before providing the straw, and 15 min after providing straw, during the 1st week, to analyse peripheral changes in oxytocin and serotonin before and after straw provision, and determine the existence of a putative short-term effect. The same procedure was carried out for Control group, without straw provision. Long-term effects of straw provision were also examined using blood samples drawn at the same hour from each animal in the 2nd and 3rd weeks. During this time, animals had the permanent possibility to explore the straw in Enriched group but not in Control group. At the end of each week, one animal-keeper completed two visual analogue scales for each mini-pig regarding the difficulty/ease to work with and handle it and its trust in humans. Results showed peripheral oxytocin increases in both groups after 2 weeks (P=0.02). Results did not demonstrate any effect of providing straw to allow exploratory behaviour on peripheral serotonin. Other results were not significant. This preliminary study explored the relationship between peripheral oxytocin and serotonin and

  2. Oxytocin Reduces Cocaine Cued Fos Activation in a Regionally Specific Manner

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leong, Kah-Chung; Freeman, Linnea R; Berini, Carole R; Ghee, Shannon M; See, Ronald E

    2017-01-01

    Abstract Background Oxytocin may be a possible treatment for multiple neuropsychiatric disorders, including cocaine addiction. Little is known about the site-specific effects of oxytocin on various drug addiction-related brain regions. Furthermore, sexually dimorphic effects of oxytocin on neural function in the addiction circuit have not been established. Here, we studied Fos expression following cocaine-cued reinstatement in both male and female rats. Methods Male and female rats underwent self-administration, extinction, and reinstatement tests. On test days, rats were given oxytocin or vehicle, and lever pressing was measured in response to conditioned cocaine cues. Rats were perfused and Fos staining measured in the central amygdala, medial prefrontal cortex, nucleus accumbens core, and subthalamic nucleus. Fos/oxytocin double labeling occurred in the paraventricular nucleus of the hypothalamus. Results Rats reinstated to cocaine cues relative to extinction responding and oxytocin reduced cocaine seeking. Oxytocin combined with contingent cue presentations increased Fos+ oxytocin cell bodies within the paraventricular nucleus of the hypothalamus relative to vehicle. Fos expression robustly increased in the central amygdala following oxytocin administration. Oxytocin reversed cue-induced Fos expression in the medial prefrontal cortex, nucleus accumbens core, and subthalamic nucleus. Central oxytocin infusion also attenuated reinstated cocaine seeking. Conclusions Oxytocin decreased reinstated cocaine seeking, increased Fos activation in the paraventricular nucleus of the hypothalamus and central amygdala, but normalized cue-induced Fos activation in the medial prefrontal cortex, nucleus accumbens core, and subthalamic nucleus, thereby demonstrating regionally specific activation patterns. No sex differences were seen for the effects of oxytocin on cocaine seeking and Fos activation, indicating that oxytocin acts on similar central neural circuits critical to

  3. The Neuropeptide Oxytocin Induces a Social Altruism Bias.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marsh, Nina; Scheele, Dirk; Gerhardt, Holger; Strang, Sabrina; Enax, Laura; Weber, Bernd; Maier, Wolfgang; Hurlemann, René

    2015-11-25

    Current psychological concepts of social and ecological responsibility emphasize the relevance of altruism, suggesting that more altruistic individuals are more likely to engage in sustainable behaviors. Emerging evidence indicates a central role of the neuropeptide oxytocin in promoting altruism. Whether this influence extends to ecological responsibility or is limited to the social domain remains unknown. In two independent experiments involving 172 human participants, we addressed this question by exposing subjects to a sustainability-related monetary donation task, with the option to support either socially or ecologically framed charities. We found that oxytocin induced a context-dependent change in altruistic behavior away from pro-environmental toward pro-social donations, while keeping constant the overall proportion of donated money. This pro-social bias transcended to the domain of sustainable consumption. Collectively, our findings demonstrate that altruistic priorities vary as a function of oxytocin system activity, which has implications for the promotion of pro-environmental attitudes and eco-friendly behaviors. Individual responses to ecological and social sustainability require a shift in personal priorities away from selfish to more altruistic behaviors. Emerging evidence indicates a central role of the hypothalamic peptide oxytocin in promoting altruism, but whether the influence of oxytocin benefits altruistic decision-making in the context of ecological and social sustainability is unclear. In two independent behavioral experiments involving 172 human subjects, we show that heightened oxytocin system activity induces a social altruism bias at the cost of ecological responsibility. Our results have fundamental implications for policy interventions and business strategies designed to sustain ecological resources by suggesting that a social framing may attract more individuals to engage in pro-environmental and eco-friendly behaviors. Copyright

  4. A New Perspective on the Pathophysiology of Borderline Personality Disorder: A Model of the Role of Oxytocin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Herpertz, Sabine C; Bertsch, Katja

    2015-09-01

    Borderline personality disorder is characterized by three domains of dysfunction: affect dysregulation, behavioral dyscontrol, and interpersonal hypersensitivity. Interpersonal hypersensitivity is associated with a (pre)attentive bias toward negative social information and, on the level of the brain, enhanced bottom-up emotion generation, while affect dysregulation results from abnormal top-down processes. Additionally, the problems of patients with borderline personality disorder in interpersonal functioning appear to be related to alterations in the (social) reward and empathy networks. There is increasing evidence that the oxytocinergic system may be involved in these domains of dysfunction and may thus contribute to borderline psychopathology and even open new avenues for targeted pharmacotherapeutic approaches. From studies in healthy and clinical subjects (including first studies with borderline personality disorder patients), the authors provide a conceptual framework for future research in borderline personality disorder that is based on oxytocinergic modulation of the following biobehavioral mechanisms: 1) the brain salience network favoring adaptive social approach behavior, 2) the affect regulation circuit normalizing top-down processes, 3) the mesolimbic circuit improving social reward experiences, and 4) modulating brain regions involved in cognitive and emotional empathy. In addition, preliminary data point to interactions between the oxytocin and cannabinoid system, with implications for pain processing. These mechanisms, which the authors believe to be modulated by oxytocin, may not be specific for borderline personality disorder but rather may be common to a host of psychiatric disorders in which disturbed parent-infant attachment is a major etiological factor.

  5. The role of oxytocin in cardiovascular regulation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J. Gutkowska

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available Studies of body volume expansion have indicated that lesions of the anteroventral third ventricle and median eminence block the release of atrial natriuretic peptide (ANP into the circulation. Detailed analysis of the lesions showed that activation of oxytocin (OT-ergic neurons is responsible for ANP release, and it has become clear that activation of neuronal circuitry elicits OT secretion into the circulation, activating atrial OT receptors and ANP release from the heart. Subsequently, we have uncovered the entire functional OT system in the rat and the human heart. An abundance of OT has been observed in the early development of the fetal heart, and the capacity of OT to generate cardiomyocytes (CMs has been demonstrated in various types of stem cells. OT treatment of mesenchymal stem cells stimulates paracrine factors beneficial for cardioprotection. Cardiovascular actions of OT include: i lowering blood pressure, ii negative inotropic and chronotropic effects, iii parasympathetic neuromodulation, iv vasodilatation, v anti-inflammatory activity, vi antioxidant activity, and vii metabolic effects. OT actions are mediated by nitric oxide and ANP. The beneficial actions of OT may include the increase in glucose uptake by CMs and stem cells, reduction in CM hypertrophy, oxidative stress, and mitochondrial protection of several cell types. In experimentally induced myocardial infarction in rats, continuous in vivo OT delivery improves cardiac healing and cardiac work, reduces inflammation, and stimulates angiogenesis. Because OT plays anti-inflammatory and cardioprotective roles and improves vascular and metabolic functions, it demonstrates potential for therapeutic use in various pathologic conditions.

  6. The role of oxytocin in cardiovascular regulation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gutkowska, J.; Jankowski, M.; Antunes-Rodrigues, J.

    2014-01-01

    Studies of body volume expansion have indicated that lesions of the anteroventral third ventricle and median eminence block the release of atrial natriuretic peptide (ANP) into the circulation. Detailed analysis of the lesions showed that activation of oxytocin (OT)-ergic neurons is responsible for ANP release, and it has become clear that activation of neuronal circuitry elicits OT secretion into the circulation, activating atrial OT receptors and ANP release from the heart. Subsequently, we have uncovered the entire functional OT system in the rat and the human heart. An abundance of OT has been observed in the early development of the fetal heart, and the capacity of OT to generate cardiomyocytes (CMs) has been demonstrated in various types of stem cells. OT treatment of mesenchymal stem cells stimulates paracrine factors beneficial for cardioprotection. Cardiovascular actions of OT include: i) lowering blood pressure, ii) negative inotropic and chronotropic effects, iii) parasympathetic neuromodulation, iv) vasodilatation, v) anti-inflammatory activity, vi) antioxidant activity, and vii) metabolic effects. OT actions are mediated by nitric oxide and ANP. The beneficial actions of OT may include the increase in glucose uptake by CMs and stem cells, reduction in CM hypertrophy, oxidative stress, and mitochondrial protection of several cell types. In experimentally induced myocardial infarction in rats, continuous in vivo OT delivery improves cardiac healing and cardiac work, reduces inflammation, and stimulates angiogenesis. Because OT plays anti-inflammatory and cardioprotective roles and improves vascular and metabolic functions, it demonstrates potential for therapeutic use in various pathologic conditions

  7. The role of oxytocin in cardiovascular regulation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Gutkowska, J.; Jankowski, M. [University of Montreal, CHUM Research Centre, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Medicine, Laboratory of Cardiovascular Biochemistry, Montreal, Quebec, Canada, Laboratory of Cardiovascular Biochemistry, Department of Medicine, Faculty of Medicine, University of Montreal, CHUM Research Centre, Montreal, Quebec (Canada); Antunes-Rodrigues, J. [Universidade de São Paulo, Faculdade de Medicina de Ribeirão Preto, Departamento de Fisiologia, Ribeirão Preto, SP, Brasil, Departamento de Fisiologia, Faculdade de Medicina de Ribeirão Preto, Universidade de São Paulo, Ribeirão Preto, SP (Brazil)

    2014-03-03

    Studies of body volume expansion have indicated that lesions of the anteroventral third ventricle and median eminence block the release of atrial natriuretic peptide (ANP) into the circulation. Detailed analysis of the lesions showed that activation of oxytocin (OT)-ergic neurons is responsible for ANP release, and it has become clear that activation of neuronal circuitry elicits OT secretion into the circulation, activating atrial OT receptors and ANP release from the heart. Subsequently, we have uncovered the entire functional OT system in the rat and the human heart. An abundance of OT has been observed in the early development of the fetal heart, and the capacity of OT to generate cardiomyocytes (CMs) has been demonstrated in various types of stem cells. OT treatment of mesenchymal stem cells stimulates paracrine factors beneficial for cardioprotection. Cardiovascular actions of OT include: i) lowering blood pressure, ii) negative inotropic and chronotropic effects, iii) parasympathetic neuromodulation, iv) vasodilatation, v) anti-inflammatory activity, vi) antioxidant activity, and vii) metabolic effects. OT actions are mediated by nitric oxide and ANP. The beneficial actions of OT may include the increase in glucose uptake by CMs and stem cells, reduction in CM hypertrophy, oxidative stress, and mitochondrial protection of several cell types. In experimentally induced myocardial infarction in rats, continuous in vivo OT delivery improves cardiac healing and cardiac work, reduces inflammation, and stimulates angiogenesis. Because OT plays anti-inflammatory and cardioprotective roles and improves vascular and metabolic functions, it demonstrates potential for therapeutic use in various pathologic conditions.

  8. Concurrent Oxytocin in Women Needing Second Dinoprostone

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sher, Z.; Ashraf, M.; Irum, N.; Bashir, S.; Khaliq, N.; Yaqub, S.

    2015-01-01

    Objective: To reduce average induction delivery internal in patients with poor Bishop score without compromising fetomaternal outcome (in terms of birth weight, NICU admission, maternal complications and mode of delivery). Study Design: A descriptive study. Place and Duration of Study: Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Pakistan Atomic Energy Commission (PAEC) General Hospital, Islamabad, from February to December 2009. Methodology: All patients needing 2nd dinoprostone pessary for induction of labour were included in the study. Patients with gestation below 37 weeks, those with intra-uterine growth restriction, bad obstetric history, previous uterine scar and patients in whom Bishop score improved for amniotomy after 1st dinoprostone pessary, were excluded. Data was collected on a special proforma where all variables were defined. Results:Out of 90 patients, 44 (48.8 percentage) had spontaneous vertex deliveries and 12 (13.3 percentage) had instrumental deliveries so a total vaginal deliveries occurred in 56 (62.2 percentage) patients. Thirty four patients (37.8 percentage) had emergency caesarean sections. Main indication for cesarean was failure to progress in 1st stage of labour followed by fetal distress. There were 3 failed inductions. Only 2 patients had hyperstimulation. NICU admission were 8 and all babies were discharged healthy from nursery with no case of early neonatal death. Conclusion:Concurrent oxytocin with 2nd dinoprostone in patients with poor Bishop scores (initial scores 2 and 3) resulted in more vaginal birth and comparatively shorter induction delivery time with almost negligible fetomaternal complications. (author)

  9. Prevention of postpartum haemorrhage with the oxytocin analogue carbetocin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rath, Werner

    2009-11-01

    Postpartum haemorrhage is the leading cause of maternal mortality worldwide: 67-80% of cases are caused by uterine atony. Preventive measures include prophylactic drug use to aid uterine contraction after delivery, thus avoiding severe blood loss and reducing maternal morbidity and mortality. Carbetocin is a synthetic analogue of oxytocin with a half-life approximately 4-10 times longer than that reported for oxytocin. It combines the safety and tolerability profile of oxytocin with the sustained uterotonic activity of injectable ergot alkaloids. Furthermore, carbetocin can be administered as a single dose injection either intravenously or intramuscularly rather than as an infusion over several hours as is the case with oxytocin. Carbetocin is currently indicated for prevention of uterine atony after delivery by caesarean section in spinal or epidural anaesthesia. Data from three randomised controlled trials in caesarean delivery and a meta-analysis indicate that carbetocin significantly reduces the need for additional uterotonic agents or uterine massage to prevent excessive bleeding compared with placebo or oxytocin. The risk of headache, tremor, hypotension, flushing, nausea, abdominal pain, pruritus and feeling of warmth was similar in women who received carbetocin or oxytocin. The findings from two more recent double-blind randomised trials and one retrospective study suggest that carbetocin may also represent a good alternative to conventional uterotonic agents for prevention of postpartum haemorrhage after vaginal deliveries. A reduced need for additional uterotonics was observed with carbetocin vs. oxytocin in high-risk women and carbetocin was at least as effective as syntometrine in low-risk women. In these studies of vaginal deliveries, carbetocin was associated with a low incidence of adverse effects and demonstrated a better tolerability profile than syntometrine. Carbetocin had a long duration of action compared with intravenous oxytocin alone and a

  10. Vasopressin and Oxytocin Reduce Food Sharing Behavior in Male, but Not Female Marmosets in Family Groups

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jack H. Taylor

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available Oxytocin (OT is critical for lactation and maternal care, but OT and the related nonapeptide vasopressin are important for caregiving behaviors in fathers and alloparents as well. This experiment tested the effects of vasopressin and OT on food sharing in marmoset families. We treated caregivers (parents, siblings with intranasal vasopressin, OT, or saline, and then paired them with the youngest marmoset in the family. Caregivers were given preferred food, and then observed for food sharing and aggressive behavior with young marmosets. OT reduced food sharing from male alloparents to youngest siblings, and fathers that received vasopressin refused to share food with their youngest offspring more often than when treated with OT. Vasopressin increased aggressive vocalizations directed toward potential food recipients in all classes of caregivers. These results indicate that vasopressin and OT do not always enhance prosocial behavior: modulation of food sharing depends on both sex and parental status.

  11. A New Population of Parvocellular Oxytocin Neurons Controlling Magnocellular Neuron Activity and Inflammatory Pain Processing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eliava, Marina; Melchior, Meggane; Knobloch-Bollmann, H Sophie; Wahis, Jérôme; da Silva Gouveia, Miriam; Tang, Yan; Ciobanu, Alexandru Cristian; Triana Del Rio, Rodrigo; Roth, Lena C; Althammer, Ferdinand; Chavant, Virginie; Goumon, Yannick; Gruber, Tim; Petit-Demoulière, Nathalie; Busnelli, Marta; Chini, Bice; Tan, Linette L; Mitre, Mariela; Froemke, Robert C; Chao, Moses V; Giese, Günter; Sprengel, Rolf; Kuner, Rohini; Poisbeau, Pierrick; Seeburg, Peter H; Stoop, Ron; Charlet, Alexandre; Grinevich, Valery

    2016-03-16

    Oxytocin (OT) is a neuropeptide elaborated by the hypothalamic paraventricular (PVN) and supraoptic (SON) nuclei. Magnocellular OT neurons of these nuclei innervate numerous forebrain regions and release OT into the blood from the posterior pituitary. The PVN also harbors parvocellular OT cells that project to the brainstem and spinal cord, but their function has not been directly assessed. Here, we identified a subset of approximately 30 parvocellular OT neurons, with collateral projections onto magnocellular OT neurons and neurons of deep layers of the spinal cord. Evoked OT release from these OT neurons suppresses nociception and promotes analgesia in an animal model of inflammatory pain. Our findings identify a new population of OT neurons that modulates nociception in a two tier process: (1) directly by release of OT from axons onto sensory spinal cord neurons and inhibiting their activity and (2) indirectly by stimulating OT release from SON neurons into the periphery. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  12. Dissecting the Role of Oxytocin in the Formation and Loss of Social Relationships.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hurlemann, René; Scheele, Dirk

    2016-02-01

    Current concepts of human sociality highlight a fundamental role of the hypothalamic peptide oxytocin (OXT) in the formation and maintenance of social relationships. However, emerging evidence indicates that OXT does not invariably facilitate social bonding but also produces nonprosocial effects that may have evolved to promote offspring survival. From a mechanistic perspective, we hypothesize that OXT modulates interoceptive signals and self-referential processing, which may result in various social outcomes depending on context- and person-dependent variables such as early-life adversity. Based on this theoretical framework, we discuss translational implications for clinical trials and identify open questions for future research. Specifically, we propose that disrupted OXT signaling due to the loss of affectionate bonds may contribute to emotional disequilibrium and confer elevated risk for the onset of stress-related disorders. Copyright © 2016 Society of Biological Psychiatry. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  13. Oxytocin is not involved in luteolysis and early maternal recognition of pregnancy (MRP) in alpacas.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ciccarelli, Michela; Waqas, Muhammad Salman; Pru, James K; Tibary, Ahmed

    2017-12-01

    Pregnancy maintenance depends on the maternal recognition of pregnancy (MRP), a physiological process by which the lifespan of the corpus luteum is prolonged. This mechanism is not well characterized in camelids. The objectives of the present research were to determine if exogenous oxytocin prolongs the corpus luteum activity in alpacas and to evaluate expression and localization of oxytocin receptors within the endometrium at 9 and 14days post-mating. In the oxytocin studies, plasma progesterone profiles were determined after ovulation in the same alpacas on 2 cycles: one cycle without oxytocin treatment and one cycle with oxytocin treatment. Oxytocin was administered daily by intramuscular injections (IM) at a dose of 20IU (experiment 1, n=6) or 60IU (experiment 2, n=7 from day 3 through day 10 after induction of ovulation with GnRH IM. There was no significant difference in the length of the luteal phase (i.e. corpus luteum lifespan) between the treated and control cycles using either 20 or 60IU of oxytocin. In the final experiment, uteri from open and pregnant alpacas (n=4 per group) at 9 and 14days post-mating were evaluated for expressions of oxytocin receptors by immunohistochemistry. No significant difference (P≤0.05) in the expression of oxytocin receptors was observed between open and pregnant animals in either staining intensity or tissue localization. We conclude that oxytocin is not involved in luteolysis and early MRP in alpacas. Published by Elsevier B.V.

  14. The Role of Oxytocin in Parenting and as Augmentative Pharmacotherapy: Critical Issues and Bold Conjectures.

    Science.gov (United States)

    van IJzendoorn, M H; Bakermans-Kranenburg, M J

    2016-08-01

    Despite the sometimes heated debate about the validity of human oxytocin studies, experimental oxytocin research with intranasal administration is a growing field with promising preliminary findings. The effects of intranasally administered oxytocin compared to placebo on brain neural activity have been supported in animal studies and in human studies of neural resting state. In several studies, oxytocin sniffs have been shown to lead to down-regulation of amygdala activation in response to infant attachment vocalisations. Meta-analytic evidence shows that oxytocin enhances the salience of (emotional) stimuli, lowers stress and arousal, and elevates empathic concern and tender care, in particular for offspring and in-group members. Less firm evidence points at the amnestic effects of oxytocin. We also note that the average effect sizes of oxytocin experiments are small to modest, and that most studies include a small number of subjects and thus are seriously underpowered, which implies a high risk for publication bias and nonreplicability. Nevertheless, we argue that the power of within-subjects experiments with oxytocin has been underestimated. Much more work is needed, however, to create a firm knowledge base of the neural and behavioural effects of oxytocin. Human oxytocin research is still taking place in the context of discovery, in which bold conjectures are being generated. In the context of justification, these conjectures should subsequently be subjected to stringent attempts at refutations before we jump to theoretical or clinical conclusions. For this context of justification, we propose a multisite multiple replications project on the social stimuli salience enhancing effect of oxytocin. Clinical application of oxytocin is premature. Meta-analytically, the use of oxytocin in clinical groups tends to show only effectiveness in changing symptomatology in individuals with autism spectrum disorders but, even then, it is not yet a validated therapy and its

  15. Antiaggressive activity of central oxytocin in male rats

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Calcagnoli, F.; de Boer, S.F.; Althaus, M.; den Boer, J.A.; Koolhaas, J.M.

    2013-01-01

    A substantial body of research suggests that the neuropeptide oxytocin promotes social affiliative behaviors in a wide range of animals including humans. However, its antiaggressive action has not been unequivocally demonstrated in male laboratory rodents. Our primary goal was to examine the

  16. The role of oxytocin in male and female reproductive behavior

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Veening, J.G.; Jong, T.R. de; Waldinger, M.D.; Korte, S.M.; Olivier, B.

    2015-01-01

    Oxytocin (OT) is a nonapeptide with an impressive variety of physiological functions. Among them, the 'prosocial' effects have been discussed in several recent reviews, but the direct effects on male and female sexual behavior did receive much less attention so far. As our contribution to honor the

  17. Effect of estradiol and oxytocin on ovine cervical relaxation

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Yomi

    2012-02-07

    Feb 7, 2012 ... The aim of this study was to examine the effect of estradiol (E2) and oxytocin ... Artificial insemination (AI) is a good way for the use of superior rams in reproduction but the conception rates in ... successful in sheep industry because it is costly, time .... during luteolysis and its abrogation in early pregnancy.

  18. Helping Oxytocin Deliver: Considerations in the Development of Oxytocin-Based Therapeutics for Brain Disorders.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kai eMacdonald

    2013-03-01

    Full Text Available Concerns regarding a drought in psychopharmacology have risen from many quarters. From one perspective, the wellspring of bedrock medications for anxiety disorders, depression, and schizophrenia was serendipitously discovered over thirty year ago, the swell of pharmaceutical investment in drug discovery has receded, and the pipeline’s flow of medications with unique mechanisms of action (i.e. glutamatergic agents, CRF antagonists has slowed to a trickle. Might oxytocin (OT-based therapeutics be an oasis? Though a large basic science literature and a slowly increasing number of studies in human diseases support this hope, the bulk of extant OT studies in humans are single-dose studies on normals, and do not directly relate to improvements in human brain-based diseases. Instead, these studies have left us with a field pregnant with therapeutic possibilities, but barren of definitive treatments. In this clinically-oriented review, we discuss the extant OT literature with an eye toward helping OT deliver on its promise as a therapeutic agent. To this end, we identify ten key questions that we believe future OT research should address. From this overview, several conclusions are clear: 1 the OT system represents an extremely promising target for novel CNS drug development; 2 there is a pressing need for rigorous, randomized controlled clinical trials targeting actual patients; and 3 in order to inform the design and execution of these vital trials, we need further translational studies addressing the questions posed in this review. Looking forward, we extend a cautious hope that the next decade of OT research will birth oxytocin-targetted therapeutics that can truly deliver on this system’s therapeutic potential.

  19. Oxytocin and the oxytocin receptor underlie intrastrain, but not interstrain, social recognition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Macbeth, A H; Lee, H-J; Edds, J; Young, W S

    2009-07-01

    We studied three lines of oxytocin (Oxt) and oxytocin receptor (Oxtr) knockout (KO) male mice [Oxt(-/-), total Oxtr(-/-) and partial forebrain Oxtr (Oxtr(FB/FB))] with established deficits in social recognition to further refine our understanding of their deficits with regard to stimulus female's strain. We used a modified social discrimination paradigm in which subjects are singly housed only for the duration of the test. Additionally, stimulus females are singly housed throughout testing and are presented within corrals for rapid comparison of investigation by subject males. Wild-type (WT) males from all three lines discriminated between familiar and novel females of three different strains (C57BL/6, BALB/c and Swiss-Webster). No KO males discriminated between familiar and novel BALB/c or C57BL/6 females. Male Oxt(-/-) and Oxtr(-/-) mice, but not Oxtr(FB/FB) mice, discriminated between familiar and novel Swiss-Webster females. As this might indicate a global deficit in individual recognition for Oxtr(FB/FB) males, we examined their ability to discriminate between females from different strains and compared performance with Oxtr(-/-) males. WT and KO males from both lines were able to distinguish between familiar and novel females from different strains, indicating the social recognition deficit is not universal. Instead, we hypothesize that the Oxtr is involved in 'fine' intrastrain recognition, but is less important in 'broad' interstrain recognition. We also present the novel finding of decreased investigation across tests, which is likely an artifact of repeated testing and not because of stimulus female's strain or age of subject males.

  20. De-masking oxytocin-deficiency in craniopharyngioma and assessing its link with affective function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gebert, Dorothea; Auer, Matthias K; Stieg, Mareike R; Freitag, Martin T; Lahne, Madlén; Fuss, Johannes; Schilbach, Katharina; Schopohl, Jochen; Stalla, Günter K; Kopczak, Anna

    2018-02-01

    Despite the high prevalence of panhypopituitarism and diabetes insipidus in patients with craniopharyngioma (CP), little is known about the functioning of the neuropeptide oxytocin in these patients. This is of special interest as tumor-associated lesions often impair sites critical for oxytocin production and release, and affective dysfunction in CP links with elsewhere reported prosocial, antidepressant and anxiolytic oxytocin effects. Using a prospective study-design, we tested whether oxytocin is reduced in CP-patients, and whether altered oxytocin levels account for affective and emotional dysfunction. 26 adult CP-patients and 26 healthy controls matched in sex and age underwent physical exercise, a stimulus previously shown to induce oxytocin release. Baseline and stimulated salivary oxytocin levels, as well as empathy, depression and anxiety scores were measured. Results showed that patients overall did not present with lower baseline oxytocin levels than controls (F[1,30]=0.21, p=0.649), but baseline oxytocin levels were indeed reduced in patients with hypothalamic damage, as assessed by MRI-based grading (F[2,9.79]=4.54, p=0.040). In response to exercise-induced stimulation, all CP-patients showed a blunted oxytocin-release compared to controls (F[1,30]=9.36, p=0.005). DI was not associated with oxytocin levels. Regarding affective function, unexpectedly, higher baseline oxytocin was related to higher trait anxiety (b=2.885, t(43)=2.421, p=0.020, CI[.478; 5.292]); the positive link with higher depression failed to reach statistical significance (b=1.928, t(43)=1.949, p=0.058, CI[-0.070; 3.927]). A blunted oxytocin-release was linked with higher state anxiety (b=-0.133, t(43)=-2.797, p=0.008, CI[-0.230; -0.037]). Empathy was not associated with oxytocin measures. In conclusion, we observed reduced baseline oxytocin levels only in CP-patients with hypothalamic damage. Exercise-induced stimulation de-masked an oxytocin-deficiency in all CP-patients. Baseline

  1. ATP Synthase, a Target for Dementia and Aging?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Larrick, James W; Larrick, Jasmine W; Mendelsohn, Andrew R

    2018-02-01

    Advancing age is the biggest risk factor for development for the major life-threatening diseases in industrialized nations accounting for >90% of deaths. Alzheimer's dementia (AD) is among the most devastating. Currently approved therapies fail to slow progression of the disease, providing only modest improvements in memory. Recently reported work describes mechanistic studies of J147, a promising therapeutic molecule previously shown to rescue the severe cognitive deficits exhibited by aged, transgenic AD mice. Apparently, J147 targets the mitochondrial alpha-F1-ATP synthase (ATP5A). Modest inhibition of the ATP synthase modulates intracellular calcium to activate AMP-activated protein kinase to inhibit mammalian target of rapamycin, a known mechanism of lifespan extension from worms to mammals.

  2. Prenatal stress puzzle, the oxytocin piece: Prenatal stress alters the behaviour and autonomic regulation in piglets, insights from oxytocin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Developmental changes in response to prenatal stressors (PNS) may represent an adaptive strategy to enhance survival traits in the offspring. Yet, PNS could be maladaptive for captive animals, causing anxiety and abnormal social development. Oxytocin (OT) reduces anxiety, whereas OT deficiencies are...

  3. Promoting social behavior with oxytocin in high-functioning autism spectrum disorders.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Andari, Elissar; Duhamel, Jean-René; Zalla, Tiziana; Herbrecht, Evelyn; Leboyer, Marion; Sirigu, Angela

    2010-03-02

    Social adaptation requires specific cognitive and emotional competences. Individuals with high-functioning autism or with Asperger syndrome cannot understand or engage in social situations despite preserved intellectual abilities. Recently, it has been suggested that oxytocin, a hormone known to promote mother-infant bonds, may be implicated in the social deficit of autism. We investigated the behavioral effects of oxytocin in 13 subjects with autism. In a simulated ball game where participants interacted with fictitious partners, we found that after oxytocin inhalation, patients exhibited stronger interactions with the most socially cooperative partner and reported enhanced feelings of trust and preference. Also, during free viewing of pictures of faces, oxytocin selectively increased patients' gazing time on the socially informative region of the face, namely the eyes. Thus, under oxytocin, patients respond more strongly to others and exhibit more appropriate social behavior and affect, suggesting a therapeutic potential of oxytocin through its action on a core dimension of autism.

  4. Central oxytocin receptors mediate mating-induced partner preferences and enhance correlated activation across forebrain nuclei in male prairie voles.

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    Johnson, Zachary V; Walum, Hasse; Jamal, Yaseen A; Xiao, Yao; Keebaugh, Alaine C; Inoue, Kiyoshi; Young, Larry J

    2016-03-01

    Oxytocin (OT) is a deeply conserved nonapeptide that acts both peripherally and centrally to modulate reproductive physiology and sociosexual behavior across divergent taxa, including humans. In vertebrates, the distribution of the oxytocin receptor (OTR) in the brain is variable within and across species, and OTR signaling is critical for a variety of species-typical social and reproductive behaviors, including affiliative and pair bonding behaviors in multiple socially monogamous lineages of fishes, birds, and mammals. Early work in prairie voles suggested that the endogenous OT system modulates mating-induced partner preference formation in females but not males; however, there is significant evidence that central OTRs may modulate pair bonding behavior in both sexes. In addition, it remains unclear how transient windows of central OTR signaling during sociosexual interaction modulate neural activity to produce enduring shifts in sociobehavioral phenotypes, including the formation of selective social bonds. Here we re-examine the role of the central OT system in partner preference formation in male prairie voles using a selective OTR antagonist delivered intracranially. We then use the same antagonist to examine how central OTRs modulate behavior and immediate early gene (Fos) expression, a metric of neuronal activation, in males during brief sociosexual interaction with a female. Our results suggest that, as in females, OTR signaling is critical for partner preference formation in males and enhances correlated activation across sensory and reward processing brain areas during sociosexual interaction. These results are consistent with the hypothesis that central OTR signaling facilitates social bond formation by coordinating activity across a pair bonding neural network. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  5. Central oxytocin receptors mediate mating-induced partner preferences and enhance correlated activation across forebrain nuclei in male prairie voles

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnson, Zachary V.; Walum, Hasse; Jamal, Yaseen A.; Xiao, Yao; Keebaugh, Alaine C.; Inoue, Kiyoshi; Young, Larry J.

    2016-01-01

    Oxytocin (OT) is a deeply conserved nonapeptide that acts both peripherally and centrally to modulate reproductive physiology and sociosexual behavior across divergent taxa, including humans. In vertebrates, the distribution of the oxytocin receptor (OTR) in the brain is variable within and across species, and OTR signaling is critical for a variety of species-typical social and reproductive behaviors, including affiliative and pair bonding behaviors in multiple socially monogamous lineages of fishes, birds, and mammals. Early work in prairie voles suggested that the endogenous OT system modulates mating-induced partner preference formation in females but not males; however, there is significant evidence that central OTRs may modulate pair bonding behavior in both sexes. In addition, it remains unclear how transient windows of central OTR signaling during sociosexual interaction modulate neural activity to produce enduring shifts in sociobehavioral phenotypes, including the formation of selective social bonds. Here we re-examine the role of the central OT system in partner preference formation in male prairie voles using a selective OTR antagonist delivered intracranially. We then use the same antagonist to examine how central OTRs modulate behavior and immediate early gene (Fos) expression, a metric of neuronal activation, in males during brief sociosexual interaction with a female. Our results suggest that, as in females, OTR signaling is critical for partner preference formation in males and enhances correlated activation across sensory and reward processing brain areas during sociosexual interaction. These results are consistent with the hypothesis that central OTR signaling facilitates social bond formation by coordinating activity across a pair bonding neural network. PMID:26643557

  6. Oxytocin in pregnancy and the postpartum: relations to labor and its management

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marie ePrevost

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available The purpose of this study was to examine variations in endogenous oxytocin levels in pregnancy and postpartum state. We also explored the associations between delivery variables and oxytocin levels. A final sample of 272 mothers in their first trimester of pregnancy were included for the study. Blood samples were drawn during the 1st trimester and 3rd trimester of pregnancy and at 8 weeks postpartum. Socio-demographic data were collected at each time point and medical files were consulted for delivery details. In most women, levels of circulating oxytocin increased from the 1st to 3rd trimester of pregnancy followed by a decrease in the postpartum period. Oxytocin levels varied considerably between individuals, ranging from 50 pg/mL to over 2000 pg/mL. Parity was the main predictor of oxytocin levels in the 3rd trimester of pregnancy and of oxytocin level changes from the 1st to the 3rd trimester of pregnancy. Oxytocin levels in the 3rd trimester of pregnancy predicted a self-reported negative labor experience and increased the chances of having an epidural. Intrapartum exogenous oxytocin was positively associated with levels of oxytocin during the postpartum period. Our exploratory results suggest that circulating oxytocin levels during the 3rd trimester of pregnancy may predict the type of labor a woman will experience. More importantly, the quantity of intrapartum exogenous oxytocin administered during labor predicted plasma oxytocin levels 2 months postpartum, suggesting a possible long-term effect of this routine intervention, the consequences of which are largely unknown.

  7. The role of oxytocin in the pathogenesis and treatment of schizophrenia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jusiak Katarzyna

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available Introduction: Until recently, oxytocin was mainly associated with the pathophysiology of childbirth and sexual functions, but lately this hormone has become the object of interest to psychiatry and psychology due to the significant influence of oxytocin on human behavior in the field of social and emotional functioning. Current scientific research focuses on the participation of oxytocin in the pathogenesis and therapy of mental disorders.

  8. Oxytocin increases bias, but not accuracy, in face recognition line-ups

    OpenAIRE

    Bate, Sarah; Bennetts, Rachel; Parris, Benjamin A.; Bindemann, Markus; Udale, Robert; Bussunt, Amanda

    2014-01-01

    Previous work indicates that intranasal inhalation of oxytocin improves face recognition skills, raising the possibility that it may be used in security settings. However, it is unclear whether oxytocin directly acts upon the core face-processing system itself, or indirectly improves face recognition via affective or social salience mechanisms. In a double-blind procedure, 60 participants received either an oxytocin or placebo nasal spray before completing the One-in-Ten task – a standardized...

  9. Restoring effects of oxytocin on the attentional preference for faces in autism

    OpenAIRE

    Kanat, M; Spenthof, I; Riedel, A; van Elst, L T; Heinrichs, M; Domes, G

    2017-01-01

    Reduced attentional preference for faces and symptoms of social anxiety are common in autism spectrum disorders (ASDs). The neuropeptide oxytocin triggers anxiolytic functions and enhances eye gaze, facial emotion recognition and neural correlates of face processing in ASD. Here we investigated whether a single dose of oxytocin increases attention to faces in ASD. As a secondary question, we explored the influence of social anxiety on these effects. We tested for oxytocin's effects on attenti...

  10. Stress-induced oxytocin release and oxytocin cell number and size in prepubertal and adult male and female rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Minhas, Sumeet; Liu, Clarissa; Galdamez, Josselyn; So, Veronica M; Romeo, Russell D

    2016-08-01

    Studies indicate that adolescent exposure to stress is a potent environmental factor that contributes to psychological and physiological disorders, though the mechanisms that mediate these dysfunctions are not well understood. Periadolescent animals display greater stress-induced hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis responses than adults, which may contribute to these vulnerabilities. In addition to the HPA axis, the hypothalamo-neurohypophyseal tract (HNT) is also activated in response to stress. In adults, stress activates this system resulting in secretion of oxytocin from neurons in the supraoptic (SON) and paraventricular (PVN) nuclei. However, it is currently unknown whether a similar or different response occurs in prepubertal animals. Given the influence of these hormones on a variety of emotional behaviors and physiological systems known to change as an animal transitions into adulthood, we investigated stress-induced HPA and HNT hormonal responses before and after stress, as well as the number and size of oxytocin-containing cells in the SON and PVN of prepubertal (30d) and adult (70d) male and female rats. Though we found the well-established protracted adrenocorticotropic hormone and corticosterone response in prepubertal males and females, only adult males and prepubertal females showed a significant stress-induced increase in plasma oxytocin levels. Moreover, though we found no pubertal changes in the number of oxytocin cells, we did find a pubertal-related increase in oxytocin somal size in both the SON and PVN of males and females. Taken together, these data indicate that neuroendocrine systems can show different patterns of stress reactivity before and after adolescent development and that these responses can be further modified by sex. Given the impact of these hormones on a variety of systems, it will be imperative to further explore these changes in hormonal stress reactivity and their role in adolescent health. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier

  11. Structural Basis of Catalysis in the Bacterial Monoterpene Synthases Linalool Synthase and 1,8-Cineole Synthase

    OpenAIRE

    Karuppiah, Vijaykumar; Ranaghan, Kara E.; Leferink, Nicole G. H.; Johannissen, Linus O.; Shanmugam, Muralidharan; Ní Cheallaigh, Aisling; Bennett, Nathan J.; Kearsey, Lewis J.; Takano, Eriko; Gardiner, John M.; van der Kamp, Marc W.; Hay, Sam; Mulholland, Adrian J.; Leys, David; Scrutton, Nigel S.

    2017-01-01

    Terpenoids form the largest and stereochemically most diverse class of natural products, and there is considerable interest in producing these by biocatalysis with whole cells or purified enzymes, and by metabolic engineering. The monoterpenes are an important class of terpenes and are industrially important as flavors and fragrances. We report here structures for the recently discovered Streptomyces clavuligerus monoterpene synthases linalool synthase (bLinS) and 1,8-cineole synthase (bCinS)...

  12. First experiences with neuropsychological effects of oxytocin administration in childhood-onset craniopharyngioma.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hoffmann, Anika; Özyurt, Jale; Lohle, Kristin; Reichel, Julia; Thiel, Christiane M; Müller, Hermann L

    2017-04-01

    The hypothalamic hormone oxytocin plays a major role in regulation of behavior and body composition. Quality of survival is frequently impaired in childhood craniopharyngioma patients due to sequelae such as behavioral deficits and severe obesity caused by tumor or treatment-related hypothalamic lesions. In our pilot cross-sectional study, we analyzed emotion recognition abilities and oxytocin concentrations in saliva and urine before and after single nasal administration of 24 IU oxytocin in 10 craniopharyngioma patients. Four craniopharyngioma presented with grade I lesions (limited to anterior hypothalamic areas) and 6 craniopharyngioma with grade II lesions (involving mammillary bodies and posterior hypothalamic areas). Emotional tasks were assessed before and after administration of oxytocin using the Geneva multimodal emotion portrayals corpus and the Multidimensional Mood Questionnaire. All patients presented with detectable levels of oxytocin before administration. Nasal administration of oxytocin was well-tolerated and resulted in increased oxytocin concentrations in saliva and urine. After oxytocin administration, craniopharyngioma patients with postsurgical lesions limited to the anterior hypothalamus area showed improvements in emotional identifications compared to craniopharyngioma patients with lesions of anterior and posterior hypothalamic areas. Focusing on correct assignments to positive and negative emotion categories, craniopharyngioma patients improved assignment to negative emotions. Oxytocin might have positive effects on emotion perception in craniopharyngioma patients with specific lesions of the anterior hypothalamic area. Further studies on larger cohorts are warranted.

  13. Oxytocin attenuates aversive response to nicotine and anxiety-like behavior in adolescent rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Hyunchan; Jang, Minji; Noh, Jihyun

    2017-02-01

    Initial tobacco use is initiated with rewarding and aversive properties of nicotine and aversive response to nicotine plays a critical role in nicotine dependency. Decrease of nicotine aversion increases the nicotine use that causes behavioral and neuronal changes of animals. Oxytocin influences drug abuse and reciprocally affect vulnerability to drug use. To assess the effect of oxytocin on initial nicotine aversion and anxiety, we examined voluntary oral nicotine intake and anxiety-like behavior following oxytocin treatment in adolescent rats. Sprague-Dawley male rats (4 weeks old) were used. For oxytocin administration, rats were injected subcutaneously with saline or oxytocin (0.01, 0.1 and 1mg/kg) according to the assigned groups. Voluntary oral nicotine consumption test was performed by two bottle free-choice paradigm. To examine anxiety-like behavior in rats, we performed a light/dark box test. Oxytocin not only significantly increased the nicotine intake but also alleviated nicotine aversion after acclimation to nicotine solution in a concentration dependent manner. Meanwhile, oxytocin significantly reduced anxiety-like behavior. We suggest that oxytocin itself mitigates aversive response toward initial nicotine intake and anxiety-like behavior. These results widen the psychophysiological perspective on oxytocin for better understanding of nicotine addiction related behaviors influenced by diverse social factors. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ireland Ltd and Japan Neuroscience Society. All rights reserved.

  14. Plasma Oxytocin Immunoreactive Products and Response to Trust in Patients with Social Anxiety Disorder

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hoge, EA; Lawson, EA; Metcalf, CA; Keshaviah, A; Zak, PJ; Pollack, MH; Simon, NM

    2013-01-01

    Background Generalized Social Anxiety Disorder (GSAD) is characterized by excessive fear and avoidance of several types of social and performance situations. The pathophysiology is not well understood, but research in animals and humans has provided evidence that oxytocin helps regulate normal social affiliative behavior. Previous work in healthy male subjects demonstrated a rise in plasma oxytocin after receiving a high trust signal. To examine the oxytocin system in GSAD, we measured plasma oxytocin in GSAD patients and controls, before and after the social “Trust Game,” a neuroeconomic test examining trust behavior and reaction to trust using real monetary incentives. Methods Thirty-nine subjects with GSAD and 28 healthy controls provided three blood samples for oxytocin measurement before the Trust Game, and one sample after the game. Plasma estradiol was also measured at baseline. The Trust Game protocol version prioritized the sending of a signal of high cooperation and trust to all participants. All analyses controlled for gender and estradiol levels. Results Mean oxytocin levels post-Trust Game (p=0.025), and overall (area under the curve, p=0.011) were lower in GSAD patients compared to controls, after controlling for sex and estradiol. There was no significant change in oxytocin levels after the Game in either group. Conclusions We report low plasma oxytocin levels in patients with generalized social anxiety disorder during a pro-social laboratory task paradigm. Additional research will be important to further examine the relationship between oxytocin and social behavior in GSAD. PMID:22807189

  15. The Neuropeptide Oxytocin Enhances Information Sharing and Group Decision Making Quality.

    Science.gov (United States)

    De Wilde, Tim R W; Ten Velden, Femke S; De Dreu, Carsten K W

    2017-01-11

    Groups can make better decisions than individuals when members cooperatively exchange and integrate their uniquely held information and insights. However, under conformity pressures group members are biased towards exchanging commonly known information, and away from exchanging unique information, thus undermining group decision-making quality. At the neurobiological level, conformity associates with the neuropeptide oxytocin. A double-blind placebo controlled study found no evidence for oxytocin induced conformity. Compared to placebo groups, three-person groups whose members received intranasal oxytocin, focused more on unique information (i) and repeated this information more often (ii). These findings reveal oxytocin as a neurobiological driver of group decision-making processes.

  16. [Oxytocin: the hormone of love, trust and social bond. Clinical use in autism and social phobia].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martin-Du Pan, R C

    2012-03-21

    Oxytocin, an octapeptide synthesized in the hypothalamus, stimulates milk election and uterine contractions. In the brain this hormone acts as a neuropeptide. It could inhibit through the GABAergic system the activity of limbic amygdala, which is involved in the response to fear. Oxytocin could also induce the protective behaviour of the mother towards its offspring through the dopaminergic system. In mankind, oxytocin plays a role in trust, empathy, generosity, stress and sexuality. Clinical studies are testing potential benefits of oxytocin administration in autism, depression and social phobia. Results are still preliminary.

  17. Urinary and plasma oxytocin changes in response to MDMA or intranasal oxytocin administration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Francis, Sunday M; Kirkpatrick, Matthew G; de Wit, Harriet; Jacob, Suma

    2016-12-01

    The neuropeptide oxytocin (OT) has received increased experimental attention for its putative role in both normal social functioning and several psychiatric disorders that are partially characterized by social dysfunction (e.g., autism spectrum disorders: ASD). Many human experimental studies measure circulating plasma levels of OT in order to examine the relationship between the hormone and behavior. Urinary OT (uOT) assays offer a simple, easy, and non-invasive method to measure peripheral hormone levels, but the correspondence between uOT and plasma OT (pOT) levels is unclear. Here, we conducted two within-subjects, double-blind studies exploring changes in uOT and pOT levels following administration of two drugs: MDMA, an oxytocin-releasing drug (Study 1), and intranasal oxytocin (INOT: Study 1 and 2). In Study 1, 14 adult participants (2 females) were each administered either oral 1.5mg/kg MDMA or 40IU INOT across two different study sessions. In Study 2, 10 male participants (adolescents and young adults) diagnosed with ASD received either 40IU INOT or placebo across two different sessions. In both studies, blood and urine samples were collected before and after drug administration at each study session. For Study 1, 10 participants provided valid plasma and urine samples for the MDMA session, and 8 provided valid samples for the INOT session. For Study 2, all 10 participants provided valid samples for both INOT and placebo sessions. Pre- and post-administration levels of pOT and uOT were compared. Additionally, correlations between percent change from baseline uOT and pOT levels were examined. Study 1: Plasma OT and uOT levels significantly increased after administration of MDMA and INOT. Furthermore, uOT levels were positively correlated with pOT levels following administration of MDMA (r=0.57, p=0.042) but not INOT (r=0.51, p=0.097). Study 2: There was a significant increase in uOT levels after administration of INOT, but not after administration of

  18. Producing biofuels using polyketide synthases

    Science.gov (United States)

    Katz, Leonard; Fortman, Jeffrey L; Keasling, Jay D

    2013-04-16

    The present invention provides for a non-naturally occurring polyketide synthase (PKS) capable of synthesizing a carboxylic acid or a lactone, and a composition such that a carboxylic acid or lactone is included. The carboxylic acid or lactone, or derivative thereof, is useful as a biofuel. The present invention also provides for a recombinant nucleic acid or vector that encodes such a PKS, and host cells which also have such a recombinant nucleic acid or vector. The present invention also provides for a method of producing such carboxylic acids or lactones using such a PKS.

  19. Mechanisms of the anti-obesity effects of oxytocin in diet-induced obese rats.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nicolas Deblon

    Full Text Available Apart from its role during labor and lactation, oxytocin is involved in several other functions. Interestingly, oxytocin- and oxytocin receptor-deficient mice develop late-onset obesity with normal food intake, suggesting that the hormone might exert a series of beneficial metabolic effects. This was recently confirmed by data showing that central oxytocin infusion causes weight loss in diet-induced obese mice. The aim of the present study was to unravel the mechanisms underlying such beneficial effects of oxytocin. Chronic central oxytocin infusion was carried out in high fat diet-induced obese rats. Its impact on body weight, lipid metabolism and insulin sensitivity was determined. We observed a dose-dependent decrease in body weight gain, increased adipose tissue lipolysis and fatty acid β-oxidation, as well as reduced glucose intolerance and insulin resistance. The additional observation that plasma oxytocin levels increased upon central infusion suggested that the hormone might affect adipose tissue metabolism by direct action. This was demonstrated using in vitro, ex vivo, as well as in vivo experiments. With regard to its mechanism of action in adipose tissue, oxytocin increased the expression of stearoyl-coenzyme A desaturase 1, as well as the tissue content of the phospholipid precursor, N-oleoyl-phosphatidylethanolamine, the biosynthetic precursor of the oleic acid-derived PPAR-alpha activator, oleoylethanolamide. Because PPAR-alpha regulates fatty acid β-oxidation, we hypothesized that this transcription factor might mediate the oxytocin effects. This was substantiated by the observation that, in contrast to its effects in wild-type mice, oxytocin infusion failed to induce weight loss and fat oxidation in PPAR-alpha-deficient animals. Altogether, these results suggest that oxytocin administration could represent a promising therapeutic approach for the treatment of human obesity and type 2 diabetes.

  20. Oxytocin Receptor (OXTR Polymorphisms and Attachment in Human Infants

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Frances S Chen

    2011-08-01

    Full Text Available Ordinary variations in human infants’ attachment behaviors—their proclivity to seek and accept comfort from caregivers—are associated with a wide range of individual differences in psychological functioning in adults. The current investigation examined variation in the oxytocin receptor (OXTR gene as one possible source of these variations in infant attachment. One hundred and seventy-six infants (77 Caucasian, 99 non-Caucasian were classified as securely or insecurely attached based on their behavior in the Strange Situation (Ainsworth et al., 1976. The A allele at OXTR rs2254298 was associated with attachment security in the non-Caucasian infants (p < .005. These findings underscore the importance of oxytocin in the development of human social behavior and support its role in social stress-regulation and the development of trust.

  1. Fluorescent visualization of oxytocin in the hypothalamo-neurohypophysial system

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hirofumi eHashimoto

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available Oxytocin (OXT is well known for its ability to the milk ejection reflex and uterine contraction. It is also involved in several other behaviors, such as anti-nociception, anxiety, feeding, social recognition and stress responses. OXT is synthesized in the magnocellular neurosecretory cells (MNCs in the hypothalamic paraventricular (PVN and the supraoptic nuclei (SON that terminate their axons in the posterior pituitary (PP. We generated transgenic rats that express the OXT and fluorescent protein fusion gene in order to visualize oxytocin in the hypothalamo-neurohypophysial system. In these transgenic rats, fluorescent proteins were observed in the MNCs and axon terminals in the PP. This transgenic rat is a new tool to study the physiological role of OXT in the hypothalamo-neurohypophysial system.

  2. Longevity in vivo of primary cell wall cellulose synthases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hill, Joseph Lee; Josephs, Cooper; Barnes, William J; Anderson, Charles T; Tien, Ming

    2018-02-01

    Our work focuses on understanding the lifetime and thus stability of the three main cellulose synthase (CESA) proteins involved in primary cell wall synthesis of Arabidopsis. It had long been thought that a major means of CESA regulation was via their rapid degradation. However, our studies here have uncovered that AtCESA proteins are not rapidly degraded. Rather, they persist for an extended time in the plant cell. Plant cellulose is synthesized by membrane-embedded cellulose synthase complexes (CSCs). The CSC is composed of cellulose synthases (CESAs), of which three distinct isozymes form the primary cell wall CSC and another set of three isozymes form the secondary cell wall CSC. We determined the stability over time of primary cell wall (PCW) CESAs in Arabidopsis thaliana seedlings, using immunoblotting after inhibiting protein synthesis with cycloheximide treatment. Our work reveals very slow turnover for the Arabidopsis PCW CESAs in vivo. Additionally, we show that the stability of all three CESAs within the PCW CSC is altered by mutations in individual CESAs, elevated temperature, and light conditions. Together, these results suggest that CESA proteins are very stable in vivo, but that their lifetimes can be modulated by intrinsic and environmental cues.

  3. The orgasmic history of oxytocin: Love, lust, and labor

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Navneet Magon

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Oxytocin has been best known for its roles in female reproduction. It is released in large amounts during labor, and after stimulation of the nipples. It is a facilitator for childbirth and breastfeeding. However, recent studies have begun to investigate oxytocin′s role in various behaviors, including orgasm, social recognition, bonding, and maternal behaviors. This small nine amino acid peptide is now believed to be involved in a wide variety of physiological and pathological functions such as sexual activity, penile erection, ejaculation, pregnancy, uterine contraction, milk ejection, maternal behavior, social bonding, stress and probably many more, which makes oxytocin and its receptor potential candidates as targets for drug therapy. From an innocuous agent as an aid in labor and delivery, oxytocin has come a long way in being touted as the latest party drug. The hormone of labor during the course of the last 100 years has had multiple orgasms to be the hormone of love. Many more shall be seen in the times to come!

  4. Oxytocin mediates copulation-induced hypoalgesia of male rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Futagami, Hiroko; Sakuma, Yasuo; Kondo, Yasuhiko

    2016-04-08

    Copulatory behavior has been reported to raise the pain threshold in male rats. In this study, we examined the effect of copulatory behavior with or without ejaculation on pain threshold measured by electrical shock via an electrode attached to the tail. It was demonstrated that ejaculation is not necessary to raise the pain threshold in male rats. In addition, we examined whether oxytocin, a hypothalamic neuropeptide, was involved in copulation-induced hypoalgesia. Sexually experienced males were subjected to stereotaxic implantation of a guide cannula targeting the lateral ventricle. After the recovery period, half of the males were intracerebroventricularly treated with an oxytocin antagonist (OTA, 100ng d(CH2)51,Tyr(Me)2,Thr4, Orn8,Tyr-NH29]-vasotocin/1μL saline) and the remaining half were administered saline without anesthesia. Fifteen minutes later, half of each group were given sexual behavior with receptive females. We found no effect of OTA on sexual activity. Immediately after ejaculation, pain threshold was measured. While raised pain threshold was observed after sexual behavior in saline-treated males, no change in pain threshold was found in OTA-treated males even after copulation. The results suggest that central oxytocin mediates copulation-induced hypoalgesia in male rats. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  5. Microbial symbionts accelerate wound healing via the neuropeptide hormone oxytocin.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Theofilos Poutahidis

    Full Text Available Wound healing capability is inextricably linked with diverse aspects of physical fitness ranging from recovery after minor injuries and surgery to diabetes and some types of cancer. Impact of the microbiome upon the mammalian wound healing process is poorly understood. We discover that supplementing the gut microbiome with lactic acid microbes in drinking water accelerates the wound-healing process to occur in half the time required for matched control animals. Further, we find that Lactobacillus reuteri enhances wound-healing properties through up-regulation of the neuropeptide hormone oxytocin, a factor integral in social bonding and reproduction, by a vagus nerve-mediated pathway. Bacteria-triggered oxytocin serves to activate host CD4+Foxp3+CD25+ immune T regulatory cells conveying transplantable wound healing capacity to naive Rag2-deficient animals. This study determined oxytocin to be a novel component of a multi-directional gut microbe-brain-immune axis, with wound-healing capability as a previously unrecognized output of this axis. We also provide experimental evidence to support long-standing medical traditions associating diet, social practices, and the immune system with efficient recovery after injury, sustained good health, and longevity.

  6. Oxytocin in the medial prefrontal cortex regulates maternal care, maternal aggression and anxiety during the postpartum period

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sabihi, Sara; Dong, Shirley M.; Durosko, Nicole E.; Leuner, Benedetta

    2014-01-01

    The neuropeptide oxytocin (OT) acts on a widespread network of brain regions to regulate numerous behavioral adaptations during the postpartum period including maternal care, maternal aggression, and anxiety. In the present study, we examined whether this network also includes the medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC). We found that bilateral infusion of a highly specific oxytocin receptor antagonist (OTR-A) into the prelimbic (PL) region of the mPFC increased anxiety-like behavior in postpartum, but not virgin, females. In addition, OTR blockade in the postpartum mPFC impaired maternal care behaviors and enhanced maternal aggression. Overall, these results suggest that OT in the mPFC modulates maternal care and aggression, as well as anxiety-like behavior, during the postpartum period. Although the relationship among these behaviors is complicated and further investigation is required to refine our understanding of OT actions in the maternal mPFC, these data nonetheless provide new insights into neural circuitry of OT-mediated postpartum behaviors. PMID:25147513

  7. Heterooligomeric phosphoribosyl diphosphate synthase of Saccharomyces cerevisiae

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hove-Jensen, Bjarne

    2004-01-01

    The yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae contains five phosphoribosyl diphosphate (PRPP) synthase-homologous genes (PRS1-5), which specify PRPP synthase subunits 1-5. Expression of the five S. cerevisiae PRS genes individually in an Escherichia coli PRPP-less strain (Deltaprs) showed that a single PRS...

  8. [Association between oxytocin augmentation intervals and the risk of postpartum haemorrhage].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Loscul, C; Chantry, A-A; Caubit, L; Deneux-Tharaux, C; Goffinet, F; Le Ray, C

    2016-09-01

    To study the association between the duration of oxytocin augmentation intervals and the risk of postpartum haemorrhage (PPH) among primiparous women in spontaneous labour. Retrospective cohort including primiparous women in spontaneous labour who received oxytocin during labour (n=454). Oxytocin augmentation intervals were dichotomized in intervalsoxytocin augmentation intervals. The association between oxytocin augmentation intervals and PPH was analyzed using univariate and multivariate analysis. Oxytocin augmentation intervals were shorter than 20minutes for 43.8% of the study population. The rate of PPH was higher (9.1% vs 3.5%; P=0.014), and the use of sulprostone was more frequent (6.5% vs 3.5%; P=0.013) if oxytocin augmentation intervals were shorter than 20minutes in comparison with intervals≥20minutes. The association between oxytocin augmentation intervals and PPH remains significant after adjustment on other PPH risk factors (adjusted OR=3.48, 95% CI [1.45-8.34]). The rate of adverse neonatal issue, defined by arterial pH at birth≤7.10 and/or 5minutes score d'Apgar≤7, was higher if oxytocin augmentation intervals wereoxytocin with augmentation intervals shorter than 20minutes. Copyright © 2016. Published by Elsevier Masson SAS.

  9. Use of oxytocin during Caesarean section at Princess Marina Hospital, Botswana: An audit of clinical practice

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Billy M. Tsima

    2013-02-01

    Full Text Available Background: Oxytocin is widely used for the prevention of postpartum haemorrhage. In the setting of Caesarean section (CS, the dosage and mode of administrating oxytocin differs according to different guidelines. Inappropriate oxytocin doses have been identified ascontributory to some cases of maternal deaths. The main aim of this study was to audit the current standard of clinical practice with regard to the use of oxytocin during CS at a referral hospital in Botswana.Methods: A clinical audit of pregnant women having CS and given oxytocin at the time of the operation was conducted over a period of three months. Data included indications for CS, oxytocin dose regimen, prescribing clinician’s designation, type of anaesthesia for the CS and estimated blood loss.Results: A total of 139 case records were included. The commonest dose was 20 IU infusion (31.7%. The potentially dangerous regimen of 10 IU intravenous bolus of oxytocin was used in 12.9% of CS. Further doses were utilized in 57 patients (41%. The top three indications forCS were fetal distress (36 patients, 24.5%, dystocia (32 patients, 21.8% and a previous CS (25 patients, 17.0%. Estimated blood loss ranged from 50 mL – 2000 mL.Conclusion: The use of oxytocin during CS in the local setting does not follow recommended practice. This has potentially harmful consequences. Education and guidance through evidencebased national guidelines could help alleviate the problem.

  10. Lack of association between human plasma oxytocin and interpersonal trust in a Prisoner's Dilemma paradigm.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    James C Christensen

    Full Text Available Expanding interest in oxytocin, particularly the role of endogenous oxytocin in human social behavior, has created a pressing need for replication of results and verification of assay methods. In this study, we sought to replicate and extend previous results correlating plasma oxytocin with trust and trustworthy behavior. As a necessary first step, the two most commonly used commercial assays were compared in human plasma via the addition of a known quantity of exogenous oxytocin, with and without sample extraction. Plasma sample extraction was found to be critical in obtaining repeatable concentrations of oxytocin. In the subsequent trust experiment, twelve samples in duplicate, from each of 82 participants, were collected over approximately six hours during the performance of a Prisoner's Dilemma task paradigm that stressed human interpersonal trust. We found no significant relationship between plasma oxytocin concentrations and trusting or trustworthy behavior. In light of these findings, previous published work that used oxytocin immunoassays without sample extraction should be reexamined and future research exploring links between endogenous human oxytocin and trust or social behavior should proceed with careful consideration of methods and appropriate biofluids for analysis.

  11. Induction of oviposition by the administration of oxytocin in hawksbill turtles.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kawazu, Isao; Kino, Masakatsu; Maeda, Konomi; Yamaguchi, Yasuhiro; Sawamukai, Yutaka

    2014-12-01

    We set out to develop an oviposition induction technique for captive female hawksbill turtles Eretmochelys imbricata. The infertile eggs of nine females were induced to develop by the administration of follicle-stimulating hormone, after which we investigated the effects of administering oxytocin on oviposition. Seven of the turtles were held in a stationary horizontal position on a retention stand, and then oxytocin was administrated (0.6-0.8 units/kg of body weight; 5 mL). The seven turtles were retained for a mandatory 2 h period after oxytocin administration, and were then returned to the holding tanks. As the control, normal saline (5 mL) was administered to the other two turtles, followed by the administration of oxytocin after 24 h. The eggs in oviducts of all nine turtles were observed by ultrasonography at 24 h after oxytocin administration. The control experiment validated that stationary retention and normal saline administration had no effect on egg oviposition. Eight of the turtles began ovipositing eggs at 17-43 min after oxytocin administration, while one began ovipositing in the holding tank immediately after retention. All turtles finished ovipositing eggs within 24 h of oxytocin administration. This report is the first to demonstrate successful induced oviposition in sea turtles. We suggest that the muscles in the oviducts of hawksbill turtles may respond to relatively lower doses of oxytocin (inducing contractions) compared to land and freshwater turtles (4-40 units/kg) based on existing studies.

  12. Working hard for oneself or others: Effects of oxytocin on reward motivation in social anxiety disorder.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fang, Angela; Treadway, Michael T; Hofmann, Stefan G

    2017-07-01

    There is some evidence to suggest that oxytocin promotes social behavior, especially for disorders characterized by social dysfunction, such as social anxiety disorder (SAD). The goal of this study was to examine the effect of oxytocin on reward motivation in SAD. We tested whether oxytocin promotes prosocial, or antisocial, self-directed decisions, and whether its effects depended on social anxiety severity and attachment. Fifty-two males with SAD received 24 international units of oxytocin or placebo, and completed a reward motivation task that measured willingness to work for self vs. other monetary rewards. Although there was no main drug effect, social anxiety severity moderated the effect of oxytocin. Less socially anxious individuals who received oxytocin worked harder for other vs. own rewards, compared to high socially anxious individuals. Attachment did not moderate this effect. Among people with SAD, oxytocin enhances prosocial behaviors in individuals with relatively lower levels of social anxiety. National Institutes of Health ClinicalTrials.gov Registry #NCT01856530. https://clinicaltrials.gov/ct2/show/NCT01856530?term=oxytocin+pro-social&rank=2. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  13. Relations between plasma oxytocin and cortisol: The stress buffering role of social support

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Robyn J. McQuaid

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available Stress responses in humans can be attenuated by exogenous oxytocin administration, and these stress-buffering properties may be moderated by social factors. Yet, the influence of acute stressors on circulating endogenous oxytocin levels have been inconsistent, and limited information is available concerning the influence of social support in moderating this relationship. In the current investigation, undergraduate women (N = 67 were assessed in the Trier Social Stress Test (TSST with either social support available from a close female friend or no social support being available. An additional set of women served as controls. The TSST elicited marked elevations of state anxiety and negative emotions, which were largely attenuated among women who received social support. Furthermore, baseline oxytocin levels were inversely related to women's general feelings of distrust, as well as basal plasma cortisol levels. Despite these associations, oxytocin levels were unaffected by the TSST, and this was the case irrespective of oral contraceptive use or estrogen levels. In contrast, plasma cortisol elevations were elicited by the psychosocial stressor, but only in women using oral contraceptives, an effect that was prevented when social support was available. Taken together, these data provisionally suggest that changes in plasma oxytocin might not accompany the stress attenuating effects of social support on cortisol levels. Moreover, as plasma oxytocin might not reliably reflect brain oxytocin levels, the linkage between oxytocin and prosocial behaviors remains tenuous.

  14. Effects of oxytocin on fertility of red sokoto goats treated with ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The objective of this study was to evaluate the effects of oxytocin (OX) administration on conception rates in does. Red Sokoto (RS) does (n = 38) were equally allocated into 2 groups; I: does treated with prostaglandin plus normal saline (PGNS) and II: does treated with prostaglandin plus oxytocin (PGOX). Does were ...

  15. Hypooxytocinaemia in obese Zucker rats relates to oxytocin degradation in liver and adipose tissue

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Gajdošechová, L.; Kršková, K.; Segarra, A. B.; Špolcová, Andrea; Suski, M.; Olszanecki, R.; Zórad, S.

    2014-01-01

    Roč. 220, č. 3 (2014), s. 333-343 ISSN 0022-0795 Institutional support: RVO:61388963 Keywords : oxytocin * obesity * insulin resistance * oxytocinase * oxytocin receptor Subject RIV: FB - Endocrinology, Diabetology, Metabolism, Nutrition Impact factor: 3.718, year: 2014

  16. THE EFFECTIVENESS OF COMBINATION OF OXYTOCIN AND ENDORPHIN MASSAGE ON UTERINE INVOLUTION IN PRIMIPAROUS MOTHERS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nurmala Sari

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available Background: One of the puerperal complication is uterine subinvolution that can cause bleeding to maternal death. Oxytocin massage can stimulate oxytocin hormone that plays a role in the process of uterine involution. Endorphine massage can increase the release of oxytocin and endorphine hormone that give a sense of calm and comfort. It also increases production of oxytocin hormone that can improve the process of uterine involution. Objective: To prove the effectiveness of a combination of oxytocin massage and endorphine massage to uterine involution in primiparaous mothers during postpartum period. Methods: This was a quasy-experimental study with pretest-posttest with control group design. Total samples were 44 normal postpartum mothers selected using purposive sampling technique, which were randomly assigned in four groups, namely: 1 oxytocin massage group, 2 endorphin massage group, 3 combined oxytocin-endorphin massage group, and 4 control group. The data were analyzed using univariate, bivariate and One Way Anova to test the effectiveness of the intervention. Results: There were statistically significant differences of fundal height before and after intervention among the four groups (p=<0.05. Conclusion: The combination of oxytocin massage and endorphine massage proved most effective in accelerating uterine involution in normal postpartum mothers.

  17. Nasal Oxytocin for Social Deficits in Childhood Autism: A Randomized Controlled Trial

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dadds, Mark R.; MacDonald, Elayne; Cauchi, Avril; Williams, Katrina; Levy, Florence; Brennan, John

    2014-01-01

    The last two decades have witnessed a surge in research investigating the application of oxytocin as a method of enhancing social behaviour in humans. Preliminary evidence suggests oxytocin may have potential as an intervention for autism. We evaluated a 5-day "live-in" intervention using a double-blind randomized control trial. 38 male…

  18. Intrapartum synthetic oxytocin reduce the expression of primitive reflexes associated with breastfeeding.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marín Gabriel, Miguel A; Olza Fernández, Ibone; Malalana Martínez, Ana M; González Armengod, Carmen; Costarelli, Valeria; Millán Santos, Isabel; Fernández-Cañadas Morillo, Aurora; Pérez Riveiro, Pilar; López Sánchez, Francisco; García Murillo, Lourdes

    2015-05-01

    Several synthetic peptide manipulations during the time surrounding birth can alter the specific neurohormonal status in the newborn brain. This study is aimed at assessing whether intrapartum oxytocin administration has any effect on primitive neonatal reflexes and determining whether such an effect is dose-dependent. A cohort prospective study was conducted at a tertiary hospital. Mother-infant dyads who received intrapartum oxytocin (n=53) were compared with mother-infant dyads who did not receive intrapartum oxytocin (n=45). Primitive neonatal reflexes (endogenous, antigravity, motor, and rhythmic reflexes) were quantified by analyzing videotaped breastfeeding sessions in a biological nurturing position. Two observers blind to the group assignment and the oxytocin dose analyzed the videotapes and assesed the newborn's state of consciousness according to the Brazelton scale. The release of all rhythmic reflexes (p=0.01), the antigravity reflex (p=0.04), and total primitive neonatal reflexes (p=0.02) in the group exposed to oxytocin was lower than in the group not exposed to oxytocin. No correlations were observed between the dose of oxytocin administered and the percentage of primitive neonatal reflexes released (r=0.03; p=0.82). Intrapartum oxytocin administration might inhibit the expression of several primitive neonatal reflexes associated with breastfeeding. This correlation does not seem to be dose-dependent.

  19. Neonatal oxytocin manipulations have long-lasting, sexually dimorphic effects on vasopressin receptors

    OpenAIRE

    Bales, KL; Plotsky, PM; Young, LJ; Lim, MM; Grotte, N; Ferrer, E; Carter, CS

    2007-01-01

    Developmental exposure to oxytocin (OT) or oxytocin antagonists (OTAs) has been shown to cause long-lasting and often sexually dimorphic effects on social behaviors in prairie voles (Microtus ochrogaster). Because regulation of social behavior in monogamous mammals involves central receptors for OT, arginine vasopressin (AVP), and dopamine, we examined the hypothesis that the lon...

  20. Oxytocin is associated with PTSD's anxious arousal symptoms in Chinese male earthquake survivors

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chengqi Cao

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available Background: Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD is a complex and severe mental disorder triggered by exposure to an extraordinarily traumatic event. Human and animal studies have implied the functional role of the oxytocin system in the development of PTSD (Cochran, Fallon, Hill, & Frazier, 2013; Koch et al., 2014; Olff, 2012. Specification of the role of the oxytocin system in the emergence and progression of PTSD symptomatology would provide evidence to inform both theory and clinical practice. Methods: This study examined the association between oxytocin serum levels and PTSD symptoms. A total of 106 Chinese male adults who suffered from the deadly 2008 Wenchuan earthquake participated in this study. PTSD symptoms were measured with PTSD Checklist for DSM-5 (PCL-5, and serum oxytocin level was determined with ELISA oxytocin kits. Results: The mean score on the PCL-5 was 19.30 (SD=14.50, range: 1–65 in this sample. The mean oxytocin level was 101.59 pg/ml (SD=55.89, range: 31.50–286.71. The results indicated that although the oxytocin was not associated with total PTSD symptoms, it was associated with PTSD's anxious arousal symptoms. Conclusion: These findings support that the oxytocin may play an important functional role in the development of PTSD and contribute to the extant knowledge on the genetic basis of the PTSD symptoms.

  1. Radioimmunoassay measurement of plasma oxytocin and vasopressin in cows during machine milking

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Landgraf, R; Wehowsky, G; Schulz, J; Schulze, H; Bothur, D [Forschungsinstitut fuer Koerperkultur und Sport, Leipzig (German Democratic Republic); Karl-Marx-Universitaet, Leipzig (German Democratic Republic). Sektion Tierproduktion und Veterinaermedizin)

    1982-07-01

    The response of plasma oxytocin and vasopressin to machine milking in cows was studied by radioimmunoassay. Depending on the method of machine milking used, plasma oxytocin increased to a greater or lesser degree after teat cup application. Plasma vasopressin was not affected by the milking procedures.

  2. Oxytocin eliminates the own-race bias in face recognition memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blandón-Gitlin, Iris; Pezdek, Kathy; Saldivar, Sesar; Steelman, Erin

    2014-09-11

    The neuropeptide Oxytocin influences a number of social behaviors, including processing of faces. We examined whether Oxytocin facilitates the processing of out-group faces and reduce the own-race bias (ORB). The ORB is a robust phenomenon characterized by poor recognition memory of other-race faces compared to the same-race faces. In Experiment 1, participants received intranasal solutions of Oxytocin or placebo prior to viewing White and Black faces. On a subsequent recognition test, whereas in the placebo condition the same-race faces were better recognized than other-race faces, in the Oxytocin condition Black and White faces were equally well recognized, effectively eliminating the ORB. In Experiment 2, Oxytocin was administered after the study phase. The ORB resulted, but Oxytocin did not significantly reduce the effect. This study is the first to show that Oxytocin can enhance face memory of out-group members and underscore the importance of social encoding mechanisms underlying the own-race bias. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled Oxytocin and Social Behav. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  3. Sex hormones and oxytocin augmentation strategies in schizophrenia : A quantitative review

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Heringa, Sophie M; Begemann, Marieke J H; Goverde, Angelique J; Sommer, Iris E C

    2015-01-01

    INTRODUCTION: Sex differences in incidence, onset and course of schizophrenia suggest sex hormones play a protective role in the pathophysiology. Such a role is also proposed for oxytocin, another important regulator of reproduction function. Evidence on the efficacy of sex hormones and oxytocin in

  4. Oxytocin effects on complex brain networks are moderated by experiences of maternal love withdrawal.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Riem, Madelon M E; van IJzendoorn, Marinus H; Tops, Mattie; Boksem, Maarten A S; Rombouts, Serge A R B; Bakermans-Kranenburg, Marian J

    2013-10-01

    The neuropeptide oxytocin has been implicated in a variety of social processes. However, recent studies indicate that oxytocin does not enhance prosocial behavior in all people in all circumstances. Here, we investigate effects of intranasal oxytocin administration on intrinsic functional brain connectivity with resting state functional magnetic resonance imaging. Participants were 42 women who received a nasal spray containing either 16 IU of oxytocin or a placebo and reported how often their mother used love withdrawal as a disciplinary strategy involving withholding love and affection after a failure or misbehavior. We found that oxytocin changes functional connectivity between the posterior cingulate cortex (PCC) and the brainstem. In the oxytocin group there was a positive connectivity between these regions, whereas the placebo group showed negative connectivity. In addition, oxytocin induced functional connectivity changes between the PCC, the cerebellum and the postcentral gyrus, but only for those participants who experienced low levels of maternal love withdrawal. We speculate that oxytocin enhances prosocial behavior by influencing complex brain networks involved in self-referential processing and affectionate touch, most prominently in individuals with supportive family backgrounds. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier B.V. and ECNP. All rights reserved.

  5. Can oxytocin augmentation modify the risk of epidural analgesia by maternal age in cesarean sections?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rossen, Janne; Klungsøyr, Kari; Albrechtsen, Susanne; Løkkegård, Ellen; Rasmussen, Steen; Bergholt, Thomas; Skjeldestad, Finn E

    2018-03-07

    Maternal age is an established risk factor for cesarean section; epidural analgesia and oxytocin augmentation may modify this association. We investigated the effects and interactions of oxytocin augmentation, epidural analgesia and maternal age on the risk of cesarean section. In all, 416 386 nulliparous women with spontaneous onset of labor, ≥37 weeks of gestation and singleton infants with a cephalic presentation during 2000-2011 from Norway and Denmark were included [Ten-group classification system (Robson) group 1]. In this case-control study the main exposure was maternal age; epidural analgesia, oxytocin augmentation, birthweight and time period were explanatory variables. Chi-square test and logistic regression were used to estimate associations and interactions. The cesarean section rate increased consistently with advancing maternal age, both overall and in strata of epidural analgesia and oxytocin augmentation. We observed strong interactions between maternal age, oxytocin augmentation and epidural analgesia for the risk of cesarean section. Women with epidural analgesia generally had a reduced adjusted odds ratio when oxytocin was used compared with when it was not used. In Norway, this applied to all maternal age groups but in Denmark only for women ≥30 years. Among women without epidural, oxytocin augmentation was associated with an increased odds ratio for cesarean section in Denmark, whereas no difference was observed in Norway. Oxytocin augmentation in nulliparous women with epidural analgesia is associated with a reduced risk of cesarean section in labor with spontaneous onset. © 2018 Nordic Federation of Societies of Obstetrics and Gynecology.

  6. Effect of different doses of oxytocin on cardiac electrophysiology and arrhythmias induced by ischemia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Houshmand, Fariba; Faghihi, Mahdieh; Imani, Alireza; Kheiri, Soleiman

    2017-01-01

    The onset of acute myocardial ischemia (MI) is accompanied by a rapid increase in electrical instability and often fatal ventricular arrhythmias. This study investigated that whether oxytocin (OT) can modulate ischemia-induced arrhythmias and considered relationships between the severity of arrhythmia and the electrocardiogram parameters during ischemia. OT (0.0001-1 μg) was administrated intraperitoneally 30 min before ischemia. To examine receptor involved, a selective OT-receptor antagonist, atosiban (ATO), was infused 10 min before OT. OT caused a significant and biphasic dose-dependent reduction in ectopic heart activity and arrhythmia score. OT doses that reduced ventricular arrhythmia elicited significant increase in QT interval. OT attenuated the electrophysiological changes associated with MI and there was significant direct relationship between QRS duration and arrhythmia score. ATO treatment reduced beneficial effects of OT on arrhythmogenesis. Nevertheless, ATO failed to alter OT effects on premature ventricular contractions. We assume that the ability of OT to modulate the electrical activity of the heart may play an important role in the antiarrhythmic actions of OT.

  7. Effect of different doses of oxytocin on cardiac electrophysiology and arrhythmias induced by ischemia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fariba Houshmand

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available The onset of acute myocardial ischemia (MI is accompanied by a rapid increase in electrical instability and often fatal ventricular arrhythmias. This study investigated that whether oxytocin (OT can modulate ischemia-induced arrhythmias and considered relationships between the severity of arrhythmia and the electrocardiogram parameters during ischemia. OT (0.0001–1 μg was administrated intraperitoneally 30 min before ischemia. To examine receptor involved, a selective OT-receptor antagonist, atosiban (ATO, was infused 10 min before OT. OT caused a significant and biphasic dose-dependent reduction in ectopic heart activity and arrhythmia score. OT doses that reduced ventricular arrhythmia elicited significant increase in QT interval. OT attenuated the electrophysiological changes associated with MI and there was significant direct relationship between QRS duration and arrhythmia score. ATO treatment reduced beneficial effects of OT on arrhythmogenesis. Nevertheless, ATO failed to alter OT effects on premature ventricular contractions. We assume that the ability of OT to modulate the electrical activity of the heart may play an important role in the antiarrhythmic actions of OT.

  8. A Cortical Circuit for Sexually Dimorphic Oxytocin-Dependent Anxiety Behaviors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Kun; Nakajima, Miho; Ibañez-Tallon, Ines; Heintz, Nathaniel

    2016-09-22

    The frequency of human social and emotional disorders varies significantly between males and females. We have recently reported that oxytocin receptor interneurons (OxtrINs) modulate female sociosexual behavior. Here, we show that, in male mice, OxtrINs regulate anxiety-related behaviors. We demonstrate that corticotropin-releasing-hormone-binding protein (CRHBP), an antagonist of the stress hormone CRH, is specifically expressed in OxtrINs. Production of CRHBP blocks the CRH-induced potentiation of postsynaptic layer 2/3 pyramidal cell activity of male, but not female, mice, thus producing an anxiolytic effect. Our data identify OxtrINs as critical for modulation of social and emotional behaviors in both females and males and reveal a molecular mechanism that acts on local medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC) circuits to coordinate responses to OXT and CRH. They suggest that additional studies of the impact of the OXT/OXTR and CRHBP/CRH pathways in males and females will be important in development of gender-specific therapies. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  9. Threonine phosphorylation of rat liver glycogen synthase

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Arino, J.; Arro, M.; Guinovart, J.J.

    1985-01-01

    32 P-labeled glycogen synthase specifically immunoprecipitated from 32 P-phosphate incubated rat hepatocytes contains, in addition to [ 32 P] phosphoserine, significant levels of [ 32 P] phosphothreonine. When the 32 P-immunoprecipitate was cleaved with CNBr, the [ 32 P] phosphothreonine was recovered in the large CNBr fragment (CB-2, Mapp 28 Kd). Homogeneous rat liver glycogen synthase was phosphorylated by all the protein kinases able to phosphorylate CB-2 in vitro. After analysis of the immunoprecipitated enzyme for phosphoaminoacids, it was observed that only casein kinase II was able to phosphorylate on threonine and 32 P-phosphate was only found in CB-2. These results demonstrate that rat liver glycogen synthase is phosphorylated at threonine site(s) contained in CB-2 and strongly indicate that casein kinase II may play a role in the ''in vivo'' phosphorylation of liver glycogen synthase. This is the first protein kinase reported to phosphorylate threonine residues in liver glycogen synthase

  10. The effects of oxytocin on social cognition in borderline personality disorder.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Servan, A; Brunelin, J; Poulet, E

    2018-02-01

    Deficits in social cognition and interpersonal difficulties are key features in borderline personality disorder. Social cognition refers to the function of perceiving and adequately dealing with social signals, leading to the establishment and maintenance of healthy and positive social relationships. Evidence suggests that oxytocin (OT) may improve social cognition and human social behavior. Recently, several studies have highlighted the beneficial effects of oxytocin in several psychiatric conditions involving social cognition deficits such as schizophrenia, autism or social phobia. However, despite growing interest, the effects of oxytocin in patients with borderline personality disorder are far from being clearly demonstrated. The objective of this work was to review and discuss studies investigating the interest of oxytocin in alleviating social cognition deficits in patients with borderline personality disorder (recognition of emotion, trust and cooperation, affective and cognitive empathy, emotional expression and social problem-solving). A systematic review of the literature was conducted up to September 31, 2016 on the Pubmed, Science direct, Medline and Scopus databases using "borderline personality disorder" and "oxytocin" as keywords. To be included, studies were to include patients with borderline personality disorder; to investigate social cognition and to investigate the effect of oxytocin on social cognition in patients with TPB. The initial search yielded 52 articles. Among them, 11 studies were selected according to the PRISMA criteria. The effect of oxytocin on social cognition in patients with borderline personality disorder was mainly investigated in relation to recognition of emotions and trust and cooperation. We did not find any studies investigating the effect of oxytocin on affective and cognitive empathy, emotional expression or social problem-solving abilities. In patients with borderline personality disorder, oxytocin had a beneficial

  11. Consequence of oxytocin injections on minerals concentration in Sahiwal cow milk

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hameed, A.; Anjum, F.M.; Zahoor, T.; Jamil, A.

    2010-01-01

    The major objective of this study was to find out the consequence of exogenous administration of oxytocin to Sahiwal cow, local breed of Pakistan (to enhance milk let down) on mineral composition. Milk samples were collected from two groups of eight animals under controlled atmosphere and feeding input. The analysis of fodder and feed samples were also carried out to support this study. Means of macro and micro minerals of fodder and feed samples were determined. One group of Sahiwal cows was subjected to intramuscular injection of oxytocin (20 IU). The milk obtained from oxytocin injected animals possessed significantly higher sodium and chloride with increment in ash content. Lactose content decreased by 0.39% and ash content increased by 0.08% in milk treated with oxytocin injections. Oxytocin administration increased the level of Na (19.74%), Cl (9.39%) and Cu (146.89%) while K content decreased (10.06%). (author)

  12. Oxytocin increases extrapancreatic glucagon secretion and glucose production in pancreatectomized dogs

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Altszuler, N.; Puma, F.; Winkler, B.; Fontan, N.; Saudek, C.D.

    1986-01-01

    Infusion of oxytocin into normal dogs increases plasma levels of insulin and glucagon and glucose production and uptake. To determine whether infused oxytocin also increases glucagon secretion from extrapancreatic sites, pancreatectomized dogs, off insulin of 18 hr, were infused with oxytocin and plasma glucagon, and glucose production and uptake were measured using the [6- 3 H]glucose primer-infusion technique. The diabetic dogs, in the control period, had elevated plasma glucose and glucagon levels, an increased rate of glucose production, and a relative decrease in glucose uptake (decreased clearance). Infusion of oxytocin (500 μU/kg/min) caused a rise in plasma glucagon and glucose levels, increased glucose production, and further decreased glucose clearance. it is concluded that oxytocin can stimulate secretion of extrapancreatic glucagon, which contributes to the increased glucose production

  13. Preventing PTSD with oxytocin: effects of oxytocin administration on fear neurocircuitry and PTSD symptom development in recently trauma-exposed individuals

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Frijling, Jessie L.

    2017-01-01

    Background: Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is a debilitating psychiatric disorder which develops in approximately 10% of trauma-exposed individuals. Currently, there are few early preventive interventions available for PTSD. Intranasal oxytocin administration early posttrauma may prevent PTSD

  14. Synthetic biology of polyketide synthases

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Yuzawa, Satoshi; Backman, Tyler W.H.; Keasling, Jay D.

    2018-01-01

    ). The modules are composed of enzymatic domains that share sequence and functional similarity across all known PKSs. We have used the nomenclature of synthetic biology to classify the enzymatic domains and modules as parts and devices, respectively, and have generated detailed lists of both. In addition, we...... realize the potential that synthetic biology approaches bring to this class of molecules....

  15. Plasma oxytocin concentrations during late pregnancy and parturition in the dog.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Klarenbeek, M; Okkens, A C; Kooistra, H S; Mol, J A; M M Bevers; Taverne, M A M

    2007-11-01

    While oxytocin is widely used in the treatment of dystocia in dogs, there is little information about its secretion before and during normal unassisted whelping. We therefore measured plasma oxytocin concentrations during late pregnancy and the expulsive stage of parturition. Blood samples were collected from eight dogs at 3-min intervals during a 42-min period between the 2nd and 14th day before whelping and during parturition after the birth of 1-3 pups. The litters consisted of 5-15 pups and the progression of the expulsive stage was linear and nearly parallel in the eight bitches. The overall mean (+/-S.D.) plasma oxytocin concentration during late pregnancy was 3.6+/-2.1pg/ml. Mean values in individual dogs ranged from 1.2 to 7.4 pg/ml, but the intra-animal variation was rather small. During the expulsive stage the overall mean (+/-S.D.) plasma oxytocin concentration was 12.9+/-13.9 pg/ml, with mean values in individual dogs ranging from 3.5 to 46 pg/ml. The mean area under the oxytocin curve for parturient dogs was significantly higher (Pdogs. During the expulsive stage, the peak plasma oxytocin level in individual dogs ranged between 10 and 117 pg/ml. In six of the eight dogs a pup was born during blood collection and in five of these animals the plasma oxytocin concentration increased temporarily during periods of abdominal straining and expulsion. However, straining efforts and expulsion were not consistently associated with a rise in the circulating oxytocin level. It is concluded that in the dog plasma oxytocin levels are higher and more variable during the expulsive stage of parturition than during late pregnancy. Interrelationships between the secretion pattern of oxytocin, the level of uterine contractility, and the progress of fetal expulsion in dogs need further exploration.

  16. Postprandial oxytocin secretion is associated with severity of anxiety and depressive symptoms in anorexia nervosa.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lawson, Elizabeth A; Holsen, Laura M; Santin, McKale; DeSanti, Rebecca; Meenaghan, Erinne; Eddy, Kamryn T; Herzog, David B; Goldstein, Jill M; Klibanski, Anne

    2013-05-01

    Anorexia nervosa, a psychiatric disorder characterized by self-induced starvation, is associated with endocrine dysfunction and comorbid anxiety and depression. Animal data suggest that oxytocin may have anxiolytic and antidepressant effects. We have reported increased postprandial oxytocin levels in women with active anorexia nervosa and decreased levels in weight-recovered women with anorexia nervosa compared to healthy controls. A meal may represent a significant source of stress in patients with disordered eating. We therefore investigated the association between postprandial oxytocin secretion and symptoms of anxiety and depression in anorexia nervosa. We performed a cross-sectional study of 35 women (13 women with active anorexia nervosa, 9 with weight-recovered anorexia nervosa, and 13 healthy controls). Anorexia nervosa was diagnosed according to DSM-IV-TR criteria. Serum oxytocin and cortisol and plasma leptin levels were measured fasting and 30, 60, and 120 minutes after a standardized mixed meal. The area under the curve (AUC) and, for oxytocin, postprandial nadir and peak levels were determined. Anxiety and depressive symptoms were assessed using the Spielberger State-Trait Anxiety Inventory (STAI) and Beck Depression Inventory II (BDI-II). The study was conducted from January 2009 to March 2011. In women with anorexia nervosa, oxytocin AUC and postprandial nadir and peak levels were positively associated with STAI trait and STAI premeal and postmeal state scores. Oxytocin AUC and nadir levels were positively associated with BDI-II scores. After controlling for cortisol AUC, all of the relationships remained significant. After controlling for leptin AUC, most of the relationships remained significant. Oxytocin secretion explained up to 51% of the variance in STAI trait and 24% of the variance in BDI-II scores. Abnormal postprandial oxytocin secretion in women with anorexia nervosa is associated with increased symptoms of anxiety and depression. This

  17. Effects of acetoacetyl-CoA synthase expression on production of farnesene in Saccharomyces cerevisiae

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Tippmann, Stefan; Ferreira, Raphael; Siewers, Verena

    2017-01-01

    to overcome the thermodynamic constraint imposed on the first reaction, in which acetoacetyl-CoA is produced from two moles of acetyl-CoA by acetoacetyl-CoA thiolase. Recently, a novel acetoacetyl-CoA synthase (nphT7) has been identified from Streptomyces sp. strain CL190, which catalyzes the irreversible...... functionality of the bypass was limited by the efficiency of acetoacetyl-CoA synthase (nphT7). Besides modulation of the expression level, which could be used as a means to partially restore the phenotype, nphT7 from Streptomyces glaucescens showed clearly higher efficiency compared to Streptomyces sp. strain...

  18. Oxytocin differently regulates pressor responses to stress in WKY and SHR rats: the role of central oxytocin and V1a receptors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wsol, A; Szczepanska-Sadowska, E; Kowalewski, S; Puchalska, L; Cudnoch-Jedrzejewska, A

    2014-01-01

    The role of central oxytocin in the regulation of cardiovascular parameters under resting conditions and during acute stress was investigated in male normotensive Wistar-Kyoto (WKY; n = 40) and spontaneously hypertensive rats (SHR; n = 28). In Experiment 1, mean arterial blood pressure (MABP) and heart rate (HR) were recorded in WKY and SHR rats at rest and after an air-jet stressor during intracerebroventricular (ICV) infusions of vehicle, oxytocin or oxytocin receptor (OTR) antagonist. In Experiment 2, the effects of vehicle, oxytocin and OTR antagonist were determined in WKY rats after prior administration of a V1a vasopressin receptor (V1aR) antagonist. Resting MABP and HR were not affected by any of the ICV infusions either in WKY or in SHR rats. In control experiments (vehicle), the pressor response to stress was significantly higher in SHR. Oxytocin enhanced the pressor response to stress in the WKY rats but reduced it in SHR. During V1aR blockade, oxytocin infusion entirely abolished the pressor response to stress in WKY rats. Combined blockade of V1aR and OTR elicited a significantly greater MABP response to stress than infusion of V1a antagonist and vehicle. This study reveals significant differences in the regulation of blood pressure in WKY and SHR rats during alarming stress. Specifically, the augmentation of the pressor response to stress by exogenous oxytocin in WKY rats is caused by its interaction with V1aR, and endogenous oxytocin regulates the magnitude of the pressor response to stress in WKY rats by simultaneous interaction with OTR and V1aR.

  19. Sex-Specific Effects of Stress on Oxytocin Neurons Correspond With Responses to Intranasal Oxytocin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Steinman, Michael Q; Duque-Wilckens, Natalia; Greenberg, Gian D; Hao, Rebecca; Campi, Katharine L; Laredo, Sarah A; Laman-Maharg, Abigail; Manning, Claire E; Doig, Ian E; Lopez, Eduardo M; Walch, Keenan; Bales, Karen L; Trainor, Brian C

    2016-09-01

    Oxytocin (OT) is considered to be a stress-buffering hormone, dampening the physiologic effects of stress. However, OT can also be anxiogenic. We examined acute and long-lasting effects of social defeat on OT neurons in male and female California mice. We used immunohistochemistry for OT and c-fos cells to examine OT neuron activity immediately after defeat (n = 6-9) and 2 weeks (n = 6-9) and 10 weeks (n = 4-5) later. We quantified Oxt messenger RNA with quantitative polymerase chain reaction (n = 5-9). Intranasal OT was administered to naïve and stressed mice tested in social interaction and resident-intruder tests (n = 8-14). Acute exposure to a third episode of defeat increased OT/c-fos colocalizations in the paraventricular nucleus of both sexes. In the medioventral bed nucleus of the stria terminalis, defeat increased Oxt messenger RNA, total OT neurons, and OT/c-fos colocalizations in female mice but not male mice. Intranasal OT failed to reverse stress-induced social withdrawal in female mice and reduced social interaction behavior in female mice naïve to defeat. In contrast, intranasal OT increased social interaction in stressed male mice and reduced freezing in the resident-intruder test. Social defeat induces long-lasting increases in OT production and OT/c-fos cells in the medioventral bed nucleus of the stria terminalis of female mice but not male mice. Intranasal OT largely reversed the effects of stress on behavior in male mice, but effects were mixed in female mice. These results suggest that changes in OT-sensitive networks contribute to sex differences in behavioral responses to stress. Copyright © 2015 Society of Biological Psychiatry. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  20. Glycogen Synthase Kinase-3β

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Munkholm, Klaus; Lenskjold, Toke; Jacoby, Anne Sophie

    2016-01-01

    cells were quantitated using enzyme immunometric assays. The activity of GSK-3β (serine-9-phosphorylated GSK-3β/total GSK-3β) was lower at baseline compared with follow-up. No significant mean change over time was observed in levels of total GSK-3β and serine-9-phosphorylated GSK-3β. Exploratory......Evidence indicates a role for glycogen synthase kinase-3β (GSK-3β) in the pathophysiology of mood disorders and in cognitive disturbances; however, the natural variation in GSK-3β activity over time is unknown. We aimed to investigate GSK-3β activity over time and its possible correlation...... with emotional lability, subjective mood fluctuations and cognitive function in healthy individuals. Thirty-seven healthy subjects were evaluated with neuropsychological tests and blood samples at baseline and 12-week follow-up. Total GSK-3β and serine-9-phosphorylated GSK-3β in peripheral blood mononuclear...

  1. Imaging oxytocin x dopamine interactions: An epistasis effect of CD38 and COMT gene variants influences the impact of oxytocin on amygdala activation to social stimuli

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carina eSauer

    2013-04-01

    Full Text Available Although oxytocin (OT has become a major target for the investigation of positive social processes, it can be assumed that it exerts its effects in concert with other neurotransmitters. One candidate for such an interaction is dopamine (DA. For both systems, genetic variants have been identified that influence the availability of the particular substance. A variant of the gene coding for the transmembrane protein CD38 (rs3796863, which is engaged in OT secretion, has been associated with OT plasma level. The common catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT val158met polymorphism is known to influence COMT activity and therefore the degradation of DA. The present study aimed to investigate OTxDA interactions in the context of an OT challenge study. Hence, we tested the influence of the above mentioned genetic variants and their interaction on the activation of different brain regions (amygdala, VTA, ventral striatum and fusiform gyrus during the presentation of social stimuli. In a pharmacological cross-over design 55 participants were investigated under OT and placebo (PLA by means of fMRI.Brain imaging results revealed no significant effects for VTA or ventral striatum. Regarding the fusiform gyrus, we could not find any effects apart from those already described in (Sauer et al., 2012. Analyses of amygdala activation resulted in no gene main effect, no gene x substance interaction but a significant gene x gene x substance interaction. While under PLA the effect of CD38 on bilateral amygdala activation to social stimuli was modulated by the COMT genotype, no such epistasis effect was found under OT. Our results provide evidence for an OTxDA interaction during responses to social stimuli. We postulate that the effect of central OT secretion on amygdala response is modulated by the availability of DA. Therefore, for an understanding of the effect of social hormones on social behavior, interactions of OT with other transmitter systems have to be taken

  2. Crystal structure of riboflavin synthase

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Liao, D.-I.; Wawrzak, Z.; Calabrese, J.C.; Viitanen, P.V.; Jordan, D.B. (DuPont); (NWU)

    2010-03-05

    Riboflavin synthase catalyzes the dismutation of two molecules of 6,7-dimethyl-8-(1'-D-ribityl)-lumazine to yield riboflavin and 4-ribitylamino-5-amino-2,6-dihydroxypyrimidine. The homotrimer of 23 kDa subunits has no cofactor requirements for catalysis. The enzyme is nonexistent in humans and is an attractive target for antimicrobial agents of organisms whose pathogenicity depends on their ability to biosynthesize riboflavin. The first three-dimensional structure of the enzyme was determined at 2.0 {angstrom} resolution using the multiwavelength anomalous diffraction (MAD) method on the Escherichia coli protein containing selenomethionine residues. The homotrimer consists of an asymmetric assembly of monomers, each of which comprises two similar {beta} barrels and a C-terminal {alpha} helix. The similar {beta} barrels within the monomer confirm a prediction of pseudo two-fold symmetry that is inferred from the sequence similarity between the two halves of the protein. The {beta} barrels closely resemble folds found in phthalate dioxygenase reductase and other flavoproteins. The three active sites of the trimer are proposed to lie between pairs of monomers in which residues conserved among species reside, including two Asp-His-Ser triads and dyads of Cys-Ser and His-Thr. The proposed active sites are located where FMN (an analog of riboflavin) is modeled from an overlay of the {beta} barrels of phthalate dioxygenase reductase and riboflavin synthase. In the trimer, one active site is formed, and the other two active sites are wide open and exposed to solvent. The nature of the trimer configuration suggests that only one active site can be formed and be catalytically competent at a time.

  3. Association between genetic variation in the oxytocin receptor gene and emotional withdrawal, but not between oxytocin pathway genes and diagnosis in psychotic disorders.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marit eHaram

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Social dysfunction is common in patients with psychotic disorders. Oxytocin is a neuropeptide with a central role in social behaviour. This study aims to explore the relationship between oxytocin pathway genes and symptoms related to social dysfunction in patients with psychotic disorders. We performed association analyses between four oxytocin pathway genes (OXT, OXTR, AVP, CD38 and four areas of social behaviour-related psychopathology as measured by Positive and Negative Syndrome Scale (PANSS. For this purpose, we used both a polygenic risk score (PGRS and single OXTR candidate SNPs previously reported in the literature (rs53576, rs237902, rs2254298. A total of 734 subjects with DSM-IV psychotic spectrum disorders and 420 healthy controls were included. Oxytocin pathway PGRSs were calculated based on the independent Psychiatric Genomics Consortium study sample. There was a significant association between symptom of Emotional Withdrawal and the previously reported OXTR risk allele A in rs53576. No significant associations between oxytocin pathway gene variants and a diagnosis of psychotic disorder were found. Our findings indicate that while oxytocin pathway genes do not appear to contribute to the susceptibility to psychotic disorders, variations in the OXTR gene might play a role in the development of impaired social behaviour.

  4. The cellulose synthase companion proteins act non-redundantly with CELLULOSE SYNTHASE INTERACTING1/POM2 and CELLULOSE SYNTHASE 6

    OpenAIRE

    Endler, Anne; Schneider, Rene; Kesten, Christopher; Lampugnani, Edwin R.; Persson, Staffan

    2016-01-01

    Cellulose is a cell wall constituent that is essential for plant growth and development, and an important raw material for a range of industrial applications. Cellulose is synthesized at the plasma membrane by massive cellulose synthase (CesA) complexes that track along cortical microtubules in elongating cells of Arabidopsis through the activity of the protein CELLULOSE SYNTHASE INTERACTING1 (CSI1). In a recent study we identified another family of proteins that also are associated with the ...

  5. Sphingomyelin synthases regulate protein trafficking and secretion.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marimuthu Subathra

    Full Text Available Sphingomyelin synthases (SMS1 and 2 represent a class of enzymes that transfer a phosphocholine moiety from phosphatidylcholine onto ceramide thus producing sphingomyelin and diacylglycerol (DAG. SMS1 localizes at the Golgi while SMS2 localizes both at the Golgi and the plasma membrane. Previous studies from our laboratory showed that modulation of SMS1 and, to a lesser extent, of SMS2 affected the formation of DAG at the Golgi apparatus. As a consequence, down-regulation of SMS1 and SMS2 reduced the localization of the DAG-binding protein, protein kinase D (PKD, to the Golgi. Since PKD recruitment to the Golgi has been implicated in cellular secretion through the trans golgi network (TGN, the effect of down-regulation of SMSs on TGN-to-plasma membrane trafficking was studied. Down regulation of either SMS1 or SMS2 significantly retarded trafficking of the reporter protein vesicular stomatitis virus G protein tagged with GFP (VSVG-GFP from the TGN to the cell surface. Inhibition of SMSs also induced tubular protrusions from the trans Golgi network reminiscent of inhibited TGN membrane fission. Since a recent study demonstrated the requirement of PKD activity for insulin secretion in beta cells, we tested the function of SMS in this model. Inhibition of SMS significantly reduced insulin secretion in rat INS-1 cells. Taken together these results provide the first direct evidence that both enzymes (SMS1 and 2 are capable of regulating TGN-mediated protein trafficking and secretion, functions that are compatible with PKD being a down-stream target for SMSs in the Golgi.

  6. Effects of acute doses of prosocial drugs methamphetamine and alcohol on plasma oxytocin levels.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bershad, Anya K; Kirkpatrick, Matthew G; Seiden, Jacob A; de Wit, Harriet

    2015-06-01

    Many drugs, including alcohol and stimulants, demonstrably increase sociability and verbal interaction and are recreationally consumed in social settings. One drug, 3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA, ecstasy), seems to produce its prosocial effects by increasing plasma oxytocin levels, and the oxytocin system has been implicated in responses to several other drugs of abuse. Here, we sought to investigate the effects of 2 other "social" drugs on plasma oxytocin levels--methamphetamine and alcohol. Based on their shared capacity to enhance sociability, we hypothesized that both methamphetamine and alcohol would increase plasma oxytocin levels. In study 1, 11 healthy adult volunteers attended 3 sessions during which they received methamphetamine (10 mg or 20 mg) or placebo under double-blind conditions. Subjective drug effects, cardiovascular effects, and plasma oxytocin levels were measured at regular intervals throughout the sessions. In study 2, 8 healthy adult volunteers attended a single session during which they received 1 beverage containing placebo, and then a beverage containing alcohol (0.8 g/kg). Subjective effects, breath alcohol levels, and plasma oxytocin levels were measured at regular intervals. Both methamphetamine and alcohol produced their expected physiological and subjective effects, but neither of these drugs increased plasma oxytocin levels. The neurobiological mechanisms mediating the prosocial effects of drugs such as alcohol and methamphetamine remain to be identified.

  7. Basal salivary oxytocin level predicts extra- but not intra-personal dimensions of emotional intelligence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Koven, Nancy S; Max, Laura K

    2014-06-01

    A wealth of literature suggests that oxytocin is an important mediator of social cognition, but much of the research to date has relied on pharmaceutical administration methods that can raise oxytocin to artificially high levels. The present study builds upon previous work by examining whether basal oxytocin level predicts intra- and extra-personal (i.e., self- and other-focused) elements of emotional intelligence (EI), independent of shared variance with current mood. The sample included 71 healthy young adults (46 women). Assessment measures included the Mayer-Salovey-Caruso Emotional Intelligence Test Version 2.0 (MSCEIT), the Trait Meta-Mood Scale, and the Profile of Mood States. Peripheral oxytocin levels were examined with enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay from saliva after solid phase extraction. Oxytocin level was unrelated to TMMS scores but was positively associated with performance in the Experiential EI domain of the MSCEIT. However, total mood disturbance was positively related to MSCEIT scores. Hierarchical regression analysis indicated that oxytocin level added unique variance to the prediction of MSCEIT performance beyond that of current mood. These results confirm an association between endogenous levels of oxytocin in healthy adults and a subset of EI abilities, including extra-personal emotion recognition and the channeling of emotions to enhance social proficiency. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  8. Does oxytocin lead to emotional interference during a working memory paradigm?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tollenaar, Marieke S; Ruissen, M; Elzinga, B M; de Bruijn, E R A

    2017-12-01

    Oxytocin administration may increase attention to emotional information. We hypothesized that this augmented emotional processing might in turn lead to interference on concurrent cognitive tasks. To test this hypothesis, we examined whether oxytocin administration would lead to heightened emotional interference during a working memory paradigm. Additionally, moderating effects of childhood maltreatment were explored. Seventy-eight healthy males received 24 IU of intranasal oxytocin or placebo in a randomized placebo-controlled double-blind between-subjects study. A working memory task was performed during which neutral, positive, and negative distractors were presented. The main outcome observed was that oxytocin did not enhance interference by emotional information during the working memory task. There was a non-significant trend for oxytocin to slow down performance irrespective of distractor valence, while accuracy was unaffected. Exploratory analyses showed that childhood maltreatment was related to lower overall accuracy, but in the placebo condition only. However, the maltreated group sample size was very small precluding any conclusions on its moderating effect. Despite oxytocin's previously proposed role in enhanced emotional processing, no proof was found that this would lead to reduced performance on a concurrent cognitive task. The routes by which oxytocin exerts its effects on cognitive and social-emotional processes remain to be fully elucidated.

  9. Intranasal oxytocin increases neural responses to social reward in post-traumatic stress disorder.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nawijn, Laura; van Zuiden, Mirjam; Koch, Saskia B J; Frijling, Jessie L; Veltman, Dick J; Olff, Miranda

    2017-02-01

    Therapeutic alliance and perceived social support are important predictors of treatment response for post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Intranasal oxytocin administration may enhance treatment response by increasing sensitivity for social reward and thereby therapeutic alliance and perceived social support. As a first step to investigate this therapeutical potential, we investigated whether intranasal oxytocin enhances neural sensitivity to social reward in PTSD patients. Male and female police officers with (n = 35) and without PTSD (n = 37) were included in a double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled cross-over fMRI study. After intranasal oxytocin (40 IU) and placebo administration, a social incentive delay task was conducted to investigate neural responses during social reward and punishment anticipation and feedback. Under placebo, PTSD patients showed reduced left anterior insula (AI) responses to social rewards (i.e. happy faces) compared with controls. Oxytocin administration increased left AI responses during social reward in PTSD patients, such that PTSD patients no longer differed from controls under placebo. Furthermore, in PTSD patients, oxytocin increased responses to social reward in the right putamen. By normalizing abberant insula responses and increasing putamen responses to social reward, oxytocin administration may enhance sensitivity for social support and therapeutic alliance in PTSD patients. Future studies are needed to investigate clinical effects of oxytocin. © The Author (2016). Published by Oxford University Press.

  10. Oxytocin facilitation of acceptance of social advice is dependent upon the perceived trustworthiness of individual advisors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Luo, Ruixue; Xu, Lei; Zhao, Weihua; Ma, Xiaole; Xu, Xiaolei; Kou, Juan; Gao, Zhao; Becker, Benjamin; Kendrick, Keith M

    2017-09-01

    The neuropeptide oxytocin may increase social cohesion by making us more willing to trust others and/or to conform to their opinions. Here we investigated whether intranasal oxytocin can influence acceptance of advice given on solving everyday social problems by either individual expert (psychologist) or non-expert advisors with or without influencing their perceived likeability or trustworthiness. In a double-blind, between-subject, placebo-control design study in 160 male and female subjects, intranasal oxytocin (24IU) only significantly enhanced acceptance of advice given by female psychologists who were rated as the most trustworthy advisors. However, oxytocin itself did not alter either trustworthiness or likeability ratings. The oxytocin effect on acceptance of the female psychologist's advice was not maintained after a week, with subjects mainly reverting to their original solutions. These findings suggest that while oxytocin can transiently increase acceptance of advice from the most trustworthy individuals this is because it makes subjects more likely to conform to their opinions rather than enhancing their perceived trustworthiness or likeability. Thus in every day contexts oxytocin may primarily promote social cohesion by facilitating conformity towards the opinions of the most trusted individuals. Copyright © 2017. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  11. Oxytocin decreases cocaine taking, cocaine seeking, and locomotor activity in female rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leong, Kah-Chung; Zhou, Luyi; Ghee, Shannon M; See, Ronald E; Reichel, Carmela M

    2016-02-01

    Oxytocin has been shown to decrease cocaine taking and seeking in male rats, suggesting potential treatment efficacy for drug addiction. In the present study, we extended these findings to the assessment of cocaine seeking and taking in female rats. Further, we made direct comparisons of oxytocin's impact on cocaine induced locomotor activity in both males and females. In females, systemic oxytocin (0.3, 1.0, 3.0 mg/kg) attenuated lever pressing for cocaine during self-administration and oxytocin (1.0 mg/kg) attenuated cue-induced cocaine seeking following extinction. Cocaine increased baseline locomotor activity to a greater degree in females relative to males. Oxytocin (0.1, 0.3, 1.0, and 3.0 mg/kg) reduced cocaine-induced locomotor activity in females, but not significantly in males. These data illustrate sex similarities in oxytocin's attenuation of cocaine seeking, but sex differences in cocaine-induced locomotor effects. While reductions in cocaine seeking cannot be attributed to a reduction in locomotor activity in males, attenuation of locomotor function cannot be entirely ruled out as an explanation for a decrease in cocaine seeking in females suggesting that oxytocin's effect on cocaine seeking may be mediated by different mechanisms in male and females. PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2016 APA, all rights reserved.

  12. Oxytocin eliminates the own-race bias in face recognition memory☆

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blandón-Gitlin, Iris; Pezdek, Kathy; Saldivar, Sesar; Steelman, Erin

    2015-01-01

    The neuropeptide Oxytocin influences a number of social behaviors, including processing of faces. We examined whether Oxytocin facilitates the processing of out-group faces and reduce the own-race bias (ORB). The ORB is a robust phenomenon characterized by poor recognition memory of other-race faces compared to the same-race faces. In Experiment 1, participants received intranasal solutions of Oxytocin or placebo prior to viewing White and Black faces. On a subsequent recognition test, whereas in the placebo condition the same-race faces were better recognized than other-race faces, in the Oxytocin condition Black and White faces were equally well recognized, effectively eliminating the ORB. In Experiment 2, Oxytocin was administered after the study phase. The ORB resulted, but Oxytocin did not significantly reduce the effect. This study is the first to show that Oxytocin can enhance face memory of out-group members and underscore the importance of social encoding mechanisms underlying the own-race bias. PMID:23872107

  13. Early social environment affects the endogenous oxytocin system: a review and future directions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Emily eAlves

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available Endogenous oxytocin plays an important role in a wide range of human functions including birth, milk ejection during lactation and facilitation of social interaction. There is increasing evidence that both variations in the oxytocin receptor (OXTR and concentrations of oxytocin are associated with differences in these functions. The causes for the differences that have been observed in tonic and stimulated oxytocin release remain unclear. Previous reviews have suggested that across the life course, these differences may be due to individual factors, e.g. genetic variation (of the OXTR, age or sex, or be the result of early environmental influences such as social experiences, stress or trauma partly by inducing epigenetic changes. This review has three aims. First, we briefly discuss the endogenous oxytocin system, including physiology, development, individual differences and function. Secondly, current models describing the relationship between the early life environment and the development of the oxytocin system in humans and animals are discussed. Finally, we describe research designs that can be used to investigate the effects of the early environment on the oxytocin system, identifying specific areas of research that need further attention.

  14. Oxytocin increases bias, but not accuracy, in face recognition line-ups.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bate, Sarah; Bennetts, Rachel; Parris, Benjamin A; Bindemann, Markus; Udale, Robert; Bussunt, Amanda

    2015-07-01

    Previous work indicates that intranasal inhalation of oxytocin improves face recognition skills, raising the possibility that it may be used in security settings. However, it is unclear whether oxytocin directly acts upon the core face-processing system itself or indirectly improves face recognition via affective or social salience mechanisms. In a double-blind procedure, 60 participants received either an oxytocin or placebo nasal spray before completing the One-in-Ten task-a standardized test of unfamiliar face recognition containing target-present and target-absent line-ups. Participants in the oxytocin condition outperformed those in the placebo condition on target-present trials, yet were more likely to make false-positive errors on target-absent trials. Signal detection analyses indicated that oxytocin induced a more liberal response bias, rather than increasing accuracy per se. These findings support a social salience account of the effects of oxytocin on face recognition and indicate that oxytocin may impede face recognition in certain scenarios. © The Author (2014). Published by Oxford University Press. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  15. Safety and Efficacy of Misoprostol versus Oxytocin for the Prevention of Postpartum Hemorrhage

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Minoo Rajaei

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Postpartum hemorrhage (PPH is the commonest cause of maternal death worldwide. Studies suggest that the use of misoprostol may be beneficial in clinical settings where oxytocin is unavailable. The aim of this study was to compare the safety and efficacy of oxytocin and misoprostol when used in the prevention of PPH. In a double-blind randomized controlled trial, 400 pregnant women who had a vaginal delivery were assigned into two groups: to receive either 20 IU of oxytocin in 1000 mL Ringer’s solution and two placebo tablets or 400 mcg oral misoprostol (as two tablets and 2 mL normal saline in 1000 mL Ringer’s solution. The quantity of blood loss was higher in the oxytocin group in comparison to the misoprostol group. There was no significant difference in the decrease in hematocrit and hemoglobin between the two groups. Although there was no significant difference in the need for transfusions between the two groups, the patients in the oxytocin group had greater need for additional oxytocin. Results from this study indicate that it may be considered as an alternative for oxytocin in low resource clinical settings. This study is registered with ClinicalTrials.gov NCT01863706.

  16. Revisiting the wandering womb: Oxytocin in endometriosis and bipolar disorder.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dinsdale, Natalie L; Crespi, Bernard J

    2017-11-01

    Hippocrates attributed women's high emotionality - hysteria - to a 'wandering womb'. Although hysteria diagnoses were abandoned along with the notion that displaced wombs cause emotional disturbance, recent research suggests that elevated levels of oxytocin occur in both bipolar disorder and endometriosis, a gynecological condition involving migration of endometrial tissue beyond the uterus. We propose and evaluate the hypothesis that elevated oxytocinergic system activity jointly contributes to bipolar disorder and endometriosis. First, we provide relevant background on endometriosis and bipolar disorder, and then we examine evidence for comorbidity between these conditions. We next: (1) review oxytocin's associations with personality traits, especially extraversion and openness, and how they overlap with bipolar spectrum traits; (2) describe evidence for higher oxytocinergic activity in both endometriosis and bipolar disorder; (3) examine altered hypothalamic-pituitary-gonadal axis functioning in both conditions; (4) describe data showing that medications that treat one condition can improve symptoms of the other; (5) discuss fitness-related impacts of endometriosis and bipolar disorder; and (6) review a pair of conditions, polycystic ovary syndrome and autism, that show evidence of involving reduced oxytocinergic activity, in direct contrast to endometriosis and bipolar disorder. Considered together, the bipolar spectrum and endometriosis appear to involve dysregulated high extremes of normally adaptive pleiotropy in the female oxytocin system, whereby elevated levels of oxytocinergic activity coordinate outgoing sociality with heightened fertility, apparently characterizing, overall, a faster life history. These findings should prompt a re-examination of how mind-body interactions, and the pleiotropic endocrine systems that underlie them, contribute to health and disease. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  17. Oxytocin and Socioemotional Aging─Current Knowledge and Future Trends

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Natalie C. Ebner

    2013-08-01

    Full Text Available The oxytocin (OT system is involved in various aspects of social cognition and prosocial behavior. Specifically, OT has been examined in the context of social memory, emotion recognition, cooperation, trust, empathy, and bonding, and─though evidence is somewhat mixed─intranasal OT appears to benefit aspects of socioemotional functioning. However, most of the extant data on aging and OT is from animal research and human OT research has focused largely on young adults. As such, though we know that various socioemotional capacities change with age, we know little about whether age-related changes in the OT system may underlie age-related differences in socioemotional functioning. In this review, we take a genetic-neuro-behavioral approach and evaluate current evidence on age-related changes in the OT system as well as the putative effects of these alterations on age-related socioemotional functioning. Looking forward, we identify informational gaps and propose an Age-Related Genetic, Neurobiological, Sociobehavioral Model of Oxytocin (AGeNeS-OT model which may structure and inform investigations into aging-related genetic, neural, and sociocognitive processes related to OT. As an exemplar of the use of the model, we report exploratory data suggesting differences in socioemotional processing associated with genetic variation in the oxytocin receptor gene (OXTR in samples of young and older adults. Information gained from this arena has translational potential in depression, social stress, and anxiety─all of which have high relevance in aging─and may contribute to reducing social isolation and improving well-being of individuals across the lifespan.

  18. Cyclophilin D Promotes Brain Mitochondrial F1FO ATP Synthase Dysfunction in Aging Mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gauba, Esha; Guo, Lan; Du, Heng

    2017-01-01

    Brain aging is the known strongest risk factor for Alzheimer's disease (AD). In recent years, mitochondrial deficits have been proposed to be a common mechanism linking brain aging to AD. Therefore, to elucidate the causative mechanisms of mitochondrial dysfunction in aging brains is of paramount importance for our understanding of the pathogenesis of AD, in particular its sporadic form. Cyclophilin D (CypD) is a specific mitochondrial protein. Recent studies have shown that F1FO ATP synthase oligomycin sensitivity conferring protein (OSCP) is a binding partner of CypD. The interaction of CypD with OSCP modulates F1FO ATP synthase function and mediates mitochondrial permeability transition pore (mPTP) opening. Here, we have found that increased CypD expression, enhanced CypD/OSCP interaction, and selective loss of OSCP are prominent brain mitochondrial changes in aging mice. Along with these changes, brain mitochondria from the aging mice demonstrated decreased F1FO ATP synthase activity and defective F1FO complex coupling. In contrast, CypD deficient mice exhibited substantially mitigated brain mitochondrial F1FO ATP synthase dysfunction with relatively preserved mitochondrial function during aging. Interestingly, the aging-related OSCP loss was also dramatically attenuated by CypD depletion. Therefore, the simplest interpretation of this study is that CypD promotes F1FO ATP synthase dysfunction and the resultant mitochondrial deficits in aging brains. In addition, in view of CypD and F1FO ATP synthase alterations seen in AD brains, the results further suggest that CypD-mediated F1FO ATP synthase deregulation is a shared mechanism linking mitochondrial deficits in brain aging and AD.

  19. Oxytocin Depolarizes Fast-Spiking Hilar Interneurons and Induces GABA Release onto Mossy Cells of the Rat Dentate Gyrus

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harden, Scott W.; Frazier, Charles J.

    2016-01-01

    Delivery of exogenous oxytocin (OXT) to central oxytocin receptors (OXT-Rs) is currently being investigated as a potential treatment for conditions such as post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), depression, social anxiety, and autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Despite significant research implicating central OXT signaling in modulation of mood, affect, social behavior, and stress response, relatively little is known about the cellular and synaptic mechanisms underlying these complex actions, particularly in brain regions which express the OXT-R but lie outside of the hypothalamus (where OXT-synthesizing neurons reside). We report that bath application of low concentrations of the selective OXT-R agonist Thr4,Gly7-OXT (TGOT) reliably and robustly drives GABA release in the dentate gyrus in an action potential dependent manner. Additional experiments led to identification of a small subset of small hilar interneurons that are directly depolarized by acute application of TGOT. From a physiological perspective, TGOT-responsive hilar interneurons have high input resistance, rapid repolarization velocity during an action potential, and a robust afterhyperpolarization. Further, they fire irregularly (or stutter) in response to moderate depolarization, and fire quickly with minimal spike frequency accommodation in response to large current injections. From an anatomical perspective, TGOT responsive hilar interneurons have dense axonal arborizations in the hilus that were found close proximity with mossy cell somata and/or proximal dendrites, and also invade the granule cell layer. Further, they have primary dendrites that always extend into the granule cell layer, and sometimes have clear arborizations in the molecular layer. Overall, these data reveal a novel site of action for OXT in an important limbic circuit, and represent a significant step towards better understanding how endogenous OXT may modulate flow of information in hippocampal networks. PMID:27068005

  20. Dopamine and oxytocin interactions underlying behaviors: potential contributions to behavioral disorders.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baskerville, Tracey A; Douglas, Alison J

    2010-06-01

    Dopamine is an important neuromodulator that exerts widespread effects on the central nervous system (CNS) function. Disruption in dopaminergic neurotransmission can have profound effects on mood and behavior and as such is known to be implicated in various neuropsychiatric behavioral disorders including autism and depression. The subsequent effects on other neurocircuitries due to dysregulated dopamine function have yet to be fully explored. Due to the marked social deficits observed in psychiatric patients, the neuropeptide, oxytocin is emerging as one particular neural substrate that may be influenced by the altered dopamine levels subserving neuropathologic-related behavioral diseases. Oxytocin has a substantial role in social attachment, affiliation and sexual behavior. More recently, it has emerged that disturbances in peripheral and central oxytocin levels have been detected in some patients with dopamine-dependent disorders. Thus, oxytocin is proposed to be a key neural substrate that interacts with central dopamine systems. In addition to psychosocial improvement, oxytocin has recently been implicated in mediating mesolimbic dopamine pathways during drug addiction and withdrawal. This bi-directional role of dopamine has also been implicated during some components of sexual behavior. This review will discuss evidence for the existence dopamine/oxytocin positive interaction in social behavioral paradigms and associated disorders such as sexual dysfunction, autism, addiction, anorexia/bulimia, and depression. Preliminary findings suggest that whilst further rigorous testing has to be conducted to establish a dopamine/oxytocin link in human disorders, animal models seem to indicate the existence of broad and integrated brain circuits where dopamine and oxytocin interactions at least in part mediate socio-affiliative behaviors. A profound disruption to these pathways is likely to underpin associated behavioral disorders. Central oxytocin pathways may serve as a

  1. Research review: Social motivation and oxytocin in autism--implications for joint attention development and intervention.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stavropoulos, Katherine K M; Carver, Leslie J

    2013-06-01

    The social motivation hypothesis (SMH) suggests that individuals with autism spectrum disorders (ASD) are less intrinsically rewarded by social stimuli than their neurotypical peers. This difference in social motivation has been posited as a factor contributing to social deficits in ASD. Social motivation is thought to involve the neuropeptide oxytocin. Here, we review the evidence for oxytocin effects in ASD, and discuss its potential role in one important social cognitive behavior. Systematic searches were conducted using the PsychINFO and MEDLINE databases and the search terms 'oxytocin' and 'autism'; the same databases were used for separate searches for 'joint attention', 'intervention', and 'autism', using the same inclusion criteria as an earlier 2011 review but updating it for the period 2010 to October 2012. Several studies suggest that giving oxytocin to both individuals with ASD and neurotypical individuals can enhance performance on social cognitive tasks. Studies that have attempted to intervene in joint attention in ASD suggest that social motivation may be a particular obstacle to lasting effects. The review of the evidence for the SMH suggests a potential role for oxytocin in social motivation deficits in ASD. Because of its importance for later communicative and social development, the focus here is on implications of oxytocin and social motivation in the development of and interventions in joint attention. Joint attention is a central impairment in ASD, and as a result is the focus of several behavioral interventions. In describing this previous research on joint attention interventions in ASD, we pay particular attention to problems encountered in such studies, and propose ways that oxytocin may facilitate behavioral intervention in this area. For future research, integrating behavioral and pharmacological interventions (oxytocin administration) would be a worthwhile experimental direction to improve understanding of the role of oxytocin in ASD

  2. Visualization of oxytocin release that mediates paired pulse facilitation in hypothalamic pathways to brainstem autonomic neurons.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ramón A Piñol

    Full Text Available Recent work has shown that oxytocin is involved in more than lactation and uterine contraction. The paraventricular nucleus of the hypothalamus (PVN contains neuroendocrine neurons that control the release of hormones, including vasopressin and oxytocin. Other populations of PVN neurons do not release hormones, but rather project to and release neurotransmitters onto other neurons in the CNS involved in fluid retention, thermoregulation, sexual behavior and responses to stress. Activation of oxytocin receptors can be cardioprotective and reduces the adverse cardiovascular consequences of anxiety and stress, yet how oxytocin can affect heart rate and cardiac function is unknown. While anatomical work has shown the presence of peptides, including oxytocin, in the projections from the PVN to parasympathetic nuclei, electrophysiological studies to date have only demonstrated release of glutamate and activation of fast ligand gated receptors in these pathways. In this study, using rats, we directly show, using sniffer CHO cells that express oxytocin receptors and the Ca2+ indicator R-GECO, that optogenetic activation of channelrhodopsin-2 (ChR2 expressing PVN fibers in the brainstem activates oxytocin receptors in the dorsomotor nucleus of the vagus (DMNV. We also demonstrate that while a single photoactivation of PVN terminals only activates glutamatergic receptors in brainstem cardiac vagal neurons (CVNs, neurons that dominate the neural control of heart rate, both the paired pulse facilitation, and sustained enhancement of glutamate release in this pathway is mediated by activation of oxytocin receptors. Our results provide direct evidence that a pathway from the PVN likely releases oxytocin and enhances short-term plasticity of this critical autonomic connection.

  3. Visualization of Oxytocin Release that Mediates Paired Pulse Facilitation in Hypothalamic Pathways to Brainstem Autonomic Neurons

    Science.gov (United States)

    Piñol, Ramón A.; Jameson, Heather; Popratiloff, Anastas; Lee, Norman H.; Mendelowitz, David

    2014-01-01

    Recent work has shown that oxytocin is involved in more than lactation and uterine contraction. The paraventricular nucleus of the hypothalamus (PVN) contains neuroendocrine neurons that control the release of hormones, including vasopressin and oxytocin. Other populations of PVN neurons do not release hormones, but rather project to and release neurotransmitters onto other neurons in the CNS involved in fluid retention, thermoregulation, sexual behavior and responses to stress. Activation of oxytocin receptors can be cardioprotective and reduces the adverse cardiovascular consequences of anxiety and stress, yet how oxytocin can affect heart rate and cardiac function is unknown. While anatomical work has shown the presence of peptides, including oxytocin, in the projections from the PVN to parasympathetic nuclei, electrophysiological studies to date have only demonstrated release of glutamate and activation of fast ligand gated receptors in these pathways. In this study, using rats, we directly show, using sniffer CHO cells that express oxytocin receptors and the Ca2+ indicator R-GECO, that optogenetic activation of channelrhodopsin-2 (ChR2) expressing PVN fibers in the brainstem activates oxytocin receptors in the dorsomotor nucleus of the vagus (DMNV). We also demonstrate that while a single photoactivation of PVN terminals only activates glutamatergic receptors in brainstem cardiac vagal neurons (CVNs), neurons that dominate the neural control of heart rate, both the paired pulse facilitation, and sustained enhancement of glutamate release in this pathway is mediated by activation of oxytocin receptors. Our results provide direct evidence that a pathway from the PVN likely releases oxytocin and enhances short-term plasticity of this critical autonomic connection. PMID:25379676

  4. Oxytocin Acts in Nucleus Accumbens to Attenuate Methamphetamine Seeking and Demand.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cox, Brittney M; Bentzley, Brandon S; Regen-Tuero, Helaina; See, Ronald E; Reichel, Carmela M; Aston-Jones, Gary

    2017-06-01

    Evidence indicates that oxytocin, an endogenous peptide well known for its role in social behaviors, childbirth, and lactation, is a promising addiction pharmacotherapy. We employed a within-session behavioral-economic (BE) procedure in rats to examine oxytocin as a pharmacotherapy for methamphetamine (meth) addiction. The BE paradigm was modeled after BE procedures used to assess motivation for drugs in humans with addiction. The same BE variables assessed across species have been shown to predict later relapse behavior. Thus, the translational potential of preclinical BE studies is particularly strong. We tested the effects of systemic and microinfused oxytocin on demand for self-administered intravenous meth and reinstatement of extinguished meth seeking in male and female rats using a BE paradigm. Correlations between meth demand and meth seeking were assessed. Female rats showed greater demand (i.e., motivation) for meth compared with male rats. In both male and female rats, meth demand predicted reinstatement of meth seeking, and systemic oxytocin decreased demand for meth and attenuated reinstatement to meth seeking. Oxytocin was most effective at decreasing meth demand and seeking in rats with the strongest motivation for drug. Finally, these effects of systemic oxytocin were mediated by actions in the nucleus accumbens. Oxytocin decreases meth demand and seeking in both sexes, and these effects depend on oxytocin signaling in the nucleus accumbens. Overall, these data indicate that development of oxytocin-based therapies may be a promising treatment approach for meth addiction in humans. Copyright © 2017 Society of Biological Psychiatry. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  5. Effects of oxytocin on high intensity focused ultrasound (HIFU) ablation of adenomysis: A prospective study

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Zhang, Xin; Zou, Min; Zhang, Cai; He, Jia; Mao, Shihua; Wu, Qingrong; He, Min; Wang, Jian; Zhang, Ruitao; Zhang, Lian

    2014-01-01

    Objective: To investigate the effects of oxytocin on high-intensity focused ultrasound (HIFU) ablation for the treatment of adenomyosis. Materials and methods: Eighty-six patients with adenomyosis from three hospitals were randomly assigned to the oxytocin group or control group for HIFU treatment. During HIFU treatment, 80 units of oxytocin was added in 500 ml of 0.9% normal saline running at the rate of 2 ml/min (0.32 U/min) in the oxytocin group, while 0.9% normal saline was used in the control group. Both patients and HIFU operators were blinded to oxytocin or saline application. Treatment results, adverse effects were compared. Results: When using oxytocin, the non-perfused volume (NPV) ratio was 80.7 ± 11.6%, the energy-efficiency factor (EEF) was 8.1 ± 9.9 J/mm 3 , and the sonication time required to ablate 1 cm 3 was 30.0 ± 36.0 s/cm 3 . When not using oxytocin, the non-perfused volume ratio was 70.8 ± 16.7%, the EEF was 15.8 ± 19.6 J/mm 3 , and the sonication time required to ablate 1 cm 3 was 58.2 ± 72.7 S/cm 3 . Significant difference in the NPV ratio, EEF, and the sonication time required to ablate 1 cm 3 between the two groups was observed. No oxytocin related adverse effects occurred. Conclusion: Oxytocin could significantly decrease the energy for ablating adenomyosis with HIFU, safely enhance the treatment efficiency

  6. Restoring effects of oxytocin on the attentional preference for faces in autism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kanat, M; Spenthof, I; Riedel, A; van Elst, L T; Heinrichs, M; Domes, G

    2017-04-18

    Reduced attentional preference for faces and symptoms of social anxiety are common in autism spectrum disorders (ASDs). The neuropeptide oxytocin triggers anxiolytic functions and enhances eye gaze, facial emotion recognition and neural correlates of face processing in ASD. Here we investigated whether a single dose of oxytocin increases attention to faces in ASD. As a secondary question, we explored the influence of social anxiety on these effects. We tested for oxytocin's effects on attention to neutral faces as compared to houses in a sample of 29 autistic individuals and 30 control participants using a dot-probe paradigm with two different presentation times (100 or 500 ms). A single dose of 24 IU oxytocin was administered in a randomized, double-blind placebo-controlled, cross-over design. Under placebo, ASD individuals paid less attention to faces presented for 500 ms than did controls. Oxytocin administration increased the allocation of attention toward faces in ASD to a level observed in controls. Secondary analyses revealed that these oxytocin effects primarily occurred in ASD individuals with high levels of social anxiety who were characterized by attentional avoidance of faces under placebo. Our results confirm a positive influence of intranasal oxytocin on social attention processes in ASD. Further, they suggest that oxytocin may in particular restore the attentional preference for facial information in ASD individuals with high social anxiety. We conclude that oxytocin's anxiolytic properties may partially account for its positive effects on socio-cognitive functioning in ASD, such as enhanced eye gaze and facial emotion recognition.

  7. Oral misoprostol versus oxytocin in the management of third stage of labour

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Aziz, S.; Kazi, S.; Haq, G.; Soomro, N.

    2014-01-01

    Objectives: To compare oral misoprostol versus intramuscular oxytocin in the management of third stage of labour. Methods: The quasi-experimental study was conducted at the Obstetrics and Gynaecology Unit II, Civil Hospital, Karachi, from June 20 to December 19, 2006. A total of 70 patients diagnosed in active phase of labour who fulfilled the inclusion criteria were selected by non-probability convenience sampling. These patients were divided into 2 groups of 35 patients each, for Oxytocin (Group 1) and misoprostol (Group 2). Main and secondary outcome measures were analysed. SPSS 10 was used for statistical analysis. Results: Average amount of blood loss(ml) was 267.14+-140.35 with Oxytocin versus 302.86+-160.4, with Misoprostol, this difference was statistically insignificant (p=0.236). Average drop in haemoglobin concentration (g/dl) with Oxytocin was 1.55+-0.38 vs 1.66+-0.61 with Misoprostol (p=0.684). Drop in haematocrit (%) was 4.18+-0.64 with Oxytocin vs. 4.50+-0.92 with Misoprostol (p=0.133). There was also insignificant difference in duration of third stage of labour, between oxytocin and Misoprostol groups (5.37+-2.20 vs. 5.23+-2.46, p=0.451) Shivering, in Misoprostol group occured in n=11 (31.4%) vs n=3 (8.6%) with Oxytocin (p=0.017) and pyrexia in n=6 (17.1%) with misoprostol vs n=0, with oxytocin (p=0.025) thus significantly higher in misoprostol group. Conclusion: There were no major differences in oral misoprostol and intramuscular oxytocin in the management of third stage of labour. (author)

  8. Endothelial nitric oxide synthase gene polymorphisms associated ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    STORAGESEVER

    2010-05-24

    May 24, 2010 ... chronic periodontitis (CP), 31 with gingivitis (G) and 50 healthy controls. Probing depth ..... Periodontal disease in pregnancy I. Prevalence and severity. ... endothelial nitric oxide synthase gene in premenopausal women with.

  9. High order quaternary arrangement confers increased structural stability to Brucella Spp. lumazine synthase

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Zylberman, V.; Craig, P.O.; Klinke, S.; Cauerhff, A.; Goldbaum, F.A. [Instituto Leloir, Buenos Aires (Argentina); Braden, B.C. [Bowie State Univ., Maryland (United States)

    2004-07-01

    The penultimate step in the pathway of riboflavin biosynthesis is catalyzed by the enzyme lumazine synthase (LS). One of the most distinctive characteristics of this enzyme is the structural quaternary divergence found in different species. The protein exists as pentameric and icosahedral forms, built from practically the same structural monomeric unit. The pentameric structure is formed by five 18 kDa monomers, each extensively contacting neighboring monomers. The icosahedral structure consists of 60 LS monomers arranged as twelve pentamers giving rise to a capsid exhibiting icosahedral 532 symmetry. In all lumazine synthases studied, the topologically equivalent active sites are located at the interfaces between adjacent subunits in the pentameric modules. The Brucella spp. lumazine synthase (BLS) sequence clearly diverges from pentameric and icosahedral enzymes. This unusual divergence prompted to further investigate on its quaternary arrangement. In the present work, we demonstrate by means of solution Light Scattering and X-ray structural analyses that BLS assembles as a very stable dimer of pentamers representing a third category of quaternary assembly for lumazine synthases. We also describe by spectroscopic studies the thermodynamic stability of this oligomeric protein, and postulate a mechanism for dissociation/unfolding of this macromolecular assembly. The higher molecular order of BLS increases its stability 20 deg C compared to pentameric lumazine synthases. The decameric arrangement described in this work highlights the importance of quaternary interactions in the stabilization of proteins. (author)

  10. High order quaternary arrangement confers increased structural stability to Brucella Spp. lumazine synthase

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Zylberman, V.; Craig, P.O.; Klinke, S.; Cauerhff, A.; Goldbaum, F.A.; Braden, B.C.

    2004-01-01

    The penultimate step in the pathway of riboflavin biosynthesis is catalyzed by the enzyme lumazine synthase (LS). One of the most distinctive characteristics of this enzyme is the structural quaternary divergence found in different species. The protein exists as pentameric and icosahedral forms, built from practically the same structural monomeric unit. The pentameric structure is formed by five 18 kDa monomers, each extensively contacting neighboring monomers. The icosahedral structure consists of 60 LS monomers arranged as twelve pentamers giving rise to a capsid exhibiting icosahedral 532 symmetry. In all lumazine synthases studied, the topologically equivalent active sites are located at the interfaces between adjacent subunits in the pentameric modules. The Brucella spp. lumazine synthase (BLS) sequence clearly diverges from pentameric and icosahedral enzymes. This unusual divergence prompted to further investigate on its quaternary arrangement. In the present work, we demonstrate by means of solution Light Scattering and X-ray structural analyses that BLS assembles as a very stable dimer of pentamers representing a third category of quaternary assembly for lumazine synthases. We also describe by spectroscopic studies the thermodynamic stability of this oligomeric protein, and postulate a mechanism for dissociation/unfolding of this macromolecular assembly. The higher molecular order of BLS increases its stability 20 deg C compared to pentameric lumazine synthases. The decameric arrangement described in this work highlights the importance of quaternary interactions in the stabilization of proteins. (author)

  11. Regulation of galactan synthase expression to modify galactan content in plants

    Science.gov (United States)

    None

    2017-08-22

    The disclosure provides methods of engineering plants to modulate galactan content. Specifically, the disclosure provides methods for engineering a plant to increase the galactan content in a plant tissue by inducing expression of beta-1,4-galactan synthase (GALS), modulated by a heterologous promoter. Further disclosed are the methods of modulating expression level of GALS under the regulation of a transcription factor, as well as overexpression of UDP-galactose epimerse in the same plant tissue. Tissue specific promoters and transcription factors can be used in the methods are also provided.

  12. The effect of oxytocin on human-directed social behaviour in dogs (Canis familiaris).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kis, Anna; Ciobica, Alin; Topál, József

    2017-08-01

    The oxytocin system has recently received increasing attention due to its effect on complex human behaviours. In parallel to this, over the past couple of decades, the human-analogue social behaviour of dogs has been intensively studied. Combining these two lines of research (e.g. studying the relationship between dog social behaviour and the oxytocin system) is a promising new research area. The present paper reviews the existing literature on how oxytocin is related to different aspects of human-directed social behaviour in dogs. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  13. Examination of the Pharmacology of Oxytocin and Clinical Guidelines for Use in Labor.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Page, Katie; McCool, William F; Guidera, Mamie

    2017-07-01

    The use of exogenous oxytocin to induce or augment labor has increased in recent years. This literature-informed review examines the action of this medication and the potential associated complications, with an evaluation of current professional practice guidelines. A brief history of the use of exogenous oxytocin for labor induction or augmentation is presented. In addition, risk management strategies for the prevention of oxytocin-related adverse outcomes and subsequent litigation are identified. © 2017 by the American College of Nurse-Midwives.

  14. Effects of selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor treatment on plasma oxytocin and cortisol in major depressive disorder.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Keating, Charlotte; Dawood, Tye; Barton, David A; Lambert, Gavin W; Tilbrook, Alan J

    2013-04-29

    Oxytocin is known for its capacity to facilitate social bonding, reduce anxiety and for its actions on the stress hypothalamopituitary adrenal (HPA) axis. Since oxytocin can physiologically suppress activity of the HPA axis, clinical applications of this neuropeptide have been proposed in conditions where the function of the HPA axis is dysregulated. One such condition is major depressive disorder (MDD). Dysregulation of the HPA system is the most prominent endocrine change seen with MDD, and normalizing the HPA axis is one of the major targets of recent treatments. The potential clinical application of oxytocin in MDD requires improved understanding of its relationship to the symptoms and underlying pathophysiology of MDD. Previous research has investigated potential correlations between oxytocin and symptoms of MDD, including a link between oxytocin and treatment related symptom reduction. The outcomes of studies investigating whether antidepressive treatment (pharmacological and non-pharmacological) influences oxytocin concentrations in MDD, have produced conflicting outcomes. These outcomes suggest the need for an investigation of the influence of a single treatment class on oxytocin concentrations, to determine whether there is a relationship between oxytocin, the HPA axis (e.g., oxytocin and cortisol) and MDD. Our objective was to measure oxytocin and cortisol in patients with MDD before and following treatment with selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors, SSRI. We sampled blood from arterial plasma. Patients with MDD were studied at the same time twice; pre- and post- 12 weeks treatment, in an unblinded sequential design (clinicaltrials.govNCT00168493). Results did not reveal differences in oxytocin or cortisol concentrations before relative to following SSRI treatment, and there were no significant relationships between oxytocin and cortisol, or these two physiological variables and psychological symptom scores, before or after treatment. These outcomes

  15. The Effect of Oxygen Inhalation Plus Oxytocin Compared with Oxytocin Only on Postpartum Haemorrhage: A Randomized Clinical Trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Suhrabi, Zainab; Taghinejad, Hamid; Direkvand-Moghadam, Ashraf; Akbari, Malihe

    2016-09-01

    Post Partum Haemorrhage (PPH) is the leading cause of maternal mortality across the world, mainly in the developing countries. The present study was conducted with the aim to investigate effect of oxygen inhalation plus oxytocin compared with oxytocin only on PPH. This study was a clinical trial which was performed in Shahid Mustafa Khomieni Teaching Hospital of Ilam (western Iran) from April 2012 to Nov 2013. One hundred and twenty pregnant women who were referred to delivery ward for normal vaginal delivery were selected with convenience sampling method and they were randomly assigned into two groups. For both groups management of the third stage of labour was done using 1000CC Ringer and 20 units of Oxytocin. In the intervention group, in addition to the routine administration, 8 liters of oxygen via face mask was used continuously until 2 hours after delivery. Blood loss was determined by regular weighing of the buttocks that were previously weighted. The difference was calculated before and after weighing (1 gram increasing of weight was considered to be equivalent to 1CC blood loss). Data were analysed by SPSS 16 version using Student- t and Chi-square tests. The two groups were homogenous in regard to all the base line variables. The study results indicated that the mean of blood loss were (256.16±97) ml at two hours after delivery in the control group and (149.5±46.49) ml in the intervention group. There was a significant difference between PPH of the two groups (poxytocin infusion during 2hours later resulted in a significant decreasing in the amount of bleeding after normal vaginal delivery.

  16. Terpene synthases from Cannabis sativa.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Judith K Booth

    Full Text Available Cannabis (Cannabis sativa plants produce and accumulate a terpene-rich resin in glandular trichomes, which are abundant on the surface of the female inflorescence. Bouquets of different monoterpenes and sesquiterpenes are important components of cannabis resin as they define some of the unique organoleptic properties and may also influence medicinal qualities of different cannabis strains and varieties. Transcriptome analysis of trichomes of the cannabis hemp variety 'Finola' revealed sequences of all stages of terpene biosynthesis. Nine cannabis terpene synthases (CsTPS were identified in subfamilies TPS-a and TPS-b. Functional characterization identified mono- and sesqui-TPS, whose products collectively comprise most of the terpenes of 'Finola' resin, including major compounds such as β-myrcene, (E-β-ocimene, (--limonene, (+-α-pinene, β-caryophyllene, and α-humulene. Transcripts associated with terpene biosynthesis are highly expressed in trichomes compared to non-resin producing tissues. Knowledge of the CsTPS gene family may offer opportunities for selection and improvement of terpene profiles of interest in different cannabis strains and varieties.

  17. Terpene synthases from Cannabis sativa.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Booth, Judith K; Page, Jonathan E; Bohlmann, Jörg

    2017-01-01

    Cannabis (Cannabis sativa) plants produce and accumulate a terpene-rich resin in glandular trichomes, which are abundant on the surface of the female inflorescence. Bouquets of different monoterpenes and sesquiterpenes are important components of cannabis resin as they define some of the unique organoleptic properties and may also influence medicinal qualities of different cannabis strains and varieties. Transcriptome analysis of trichomes of the cannabis hemp variety 'Finola' revealed sequences of all stages of terpene biosynthesis. Nine cannabis terpene synthases (CsTPS) were identified in subfamilies TPS-a and TPS-b. Functional characterization identified mono- and sesqui-TPS, whose products collectively comprise most of the terpenes of 'Finola' resin, including major compounds such as β-myrcene, (E)-β-ocimene, (-)-limonene, (+)-α-pinene, β-caryophyllene, and α-humulene. Transcripts associated with terpene biosynthesis are highly expressed in trichomes compared to non-resin producing tissues. Knowledge of the CsTPS gene family may offer opportunities for selection and improvement of terpene profiles of interest in different cannabis strains and varieties.

  18. Influence of oxytocin on emotion recognition from body language: A randomized placebo-controlled trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bernaerts, Sylvie; Berra, Emmely; Wenderoth, Nicole; Alaerts, Kaat

    2016-10-01

    The neuropeptide 'oxytocin' (OT) is known to play a pivotal role in a variety of complex social behaviors by promoting a prosocial attitude and interpersonal bonding. One mechanism by which OT is hypothesized to promote prosocial behavior is by enhancing the processing of socially relevant information from the environment. With the present study, we explored to what extent OT can alter the 'reading' of emotional body language as presented by impoverished biological motion point light displays (PLDs). To do so, a double-blind between-subjects randomized placebo-controlled trial was conducted, assessing performance on a bodily emotion recognition task in healthy adult males before and after a single-dose of intranasal OT (24 IU). Overall, a single-dose of OT administration had a significant effect of medium size on emotion recognition from body language. OT-induced improvements in emotion recognition were not differentially modulated by the emotional valence of the presented stimuli (positive versus negative) and also, the overall tendency to label an observed emotional state as 'happy' (positive) or 'angry' (negative) was not modified by the administration of OT. Albeit moderate, the present findings of OT-induced improvements in bodily emotion recognition from whole-body PLD provide further support for a link between OT and the processing of socio-communicative cues originating from the body of others. Copyright © 2016 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd.. All rights reserved.

  19. Interplay of oxytocin, vasopressin, and sex hormones in the regulation of social recognition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gabor, Christopher S; Phan, Anna; Clipperton-Allen, Amy E; Kavaliers, Martin; Choleris, Elena

    2012-02-01

    Social Recognition is a fundamental skill that forms the basis of behaviors essential to the proper functioning of pair or group living in most social species. We review here various neurobiological and genetic studies that point to an interplay of oxytocin (OT), arginine-vasopressin (AVP), and the gonadal hormones, estrogens and testosterone, in the mediation of social recognition. Results of a number of studies have shown that OT and its actions at the medial amygdala seem to be essential for social recognition in both sexes. Estrogens facilitate social recognition, possibly by regulating OT production in the hypothalamus and the OT receptors at the medial amygdala. Estrogens also affect social recognition on a rapid time scale, likely through nongenomic actions. The mechanisms of these rapid effects are currently unknown but available evidence points at the hippocampus as the possible site of action. Male rodents seem to be more dependent on AVP acting at the level of the lateral septum for social recognition than female rodents. Results of various studies suggest that testosterone and its metabolites (including estradiol) influence social recognition in males primarily through the AVP V1a receptor. Overall, it appears that gonadal hormone modulation of OT and AVP regulates and fine tunes social recognition and those behaviors that depend upon it (e.g., social bonds, social hierarchies) in a sex specific manner. This points at an important role for these neuroendocrine systems in the regulation of the sex differences that are evident in social behavior and of sociality as a whole.

  20. Oxytocin, vasopressin and estrogen receptor gene expression in relation to social recognition in female mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clipperton-Allen, Amy E; Lee, Anna W; Reyes, Anny; Devidze, Nino; Phan, Anna; Pfaff, Donald W; Choleris, Elena

    2012-02-28

    Inter- and intra-species differences in social behavior and recognition-related hormones and receptors suggest that different distribution and/or expression patterns may relate to social recognition. We used qRT-PCR to investigate naturally occurring differences in expression of estrogen receptor-alpha (ERα), ER-beta (ERβ), progesterone receptor (PR), oxytocin (OT) and receptor, and vasopressin (AVP) and receptors in proestrous female mice. Following four 5 min exposures to the same two conspecifics, one was replaced with a novel mouse in the final trial (T5). Gene expression was examined in mice showing high (85-100%) and low (40-60%) social recognition scores (i.e., preferential novel mouse investigation in T5) in eight socially-relevant brain regions. Results supported OT and AVP involvement in social recognition, and suggest that in the medial preoptic area, increased OT and AVP mRNA, together with ERα and ERβ gene activation, relate to improved social recognition. Initial social investigation correlated with ERs, PR and OTR in the dorsolateral septum, suggesting that these receptors may modulate social interest without affecting social recognition. Finally, increased lateral amygdala gene activation in the LR mice may be associated with general learning impairments, while decreased lateral amygdala activity may indicate more efficient cognitive mechanisms in the HR mice. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  1. Melanocortin Receptor Agonists Facilitate Oxytocin-Dependent Partner Preference Formation in the Prairie Vole.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Modi, Meera E; Inoue, Kiyoshi; Barrett, Catherine E; Kittelberger, Kara A; Smith, Daniel G; Landgraf, Rainer; Young, Larry J

    2015-07-01

    The central melanocortin (MC) system has been widely studied for its effects on food intake and sexual behavior. However, the MC system, and more specifically the MC4 receptor (MC4R), also interacts with neurochemical systems that regulate socioemotional behaviors, including oxytocin (OT) and dopamine. In monogamous prairie voles, OT and dopamine interact to promote partner preference formation, a laboratory measure of an enduring social bond between mates. Here we investigated the effects of MC receptor activation on partner preference formation in prairie voles, as well as the interaction between the MC and OT systems during this process. Peripheral administration of the brain penetrant MC3/4R receptor peptide agonist, Melanotan II (MTII), and the highly selective, small-molecule MC4R agonist, Pf-446687, enhanced partner preference formation in the prairie vole, but not in the non-monogamous meadow vole. MTII-induced partner preferences were enduring, as they were present 1 week after drug manipulation. The prosocial effects of MCR agonists may be mediated, in part, through modulation of OT, as coadministration of an OT receptor antagonist prevented MTII-induced partner preferences. MTII also selectively activated hypothalamic OT neurons and potentiated central OT release. As OT has been shown to enhance some aspects of social cognition in humans, our data suggest that the MC4R may be a viable therapeutic target for enhancing social function in psychiatric disorders, including autism spectrum disorders and schizophrenia, potentially through activation of the OT system.

  2. Oxytocin and vasopressin enhance responsiveness to infant stimuli in adult marmosets.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Taylor, Jack H; French, Jeffrey A

    2015-09-01

    The neuropeptides oxytocin (OT) and arginine-vasopressin (AVP) have been implicated in modulating sex-specific responses to offspring in a variety of uniparental and biparental rodent species. Despite the large body of research in rodents, the effects of these hormones in biparental primates are less understood. Marmoset monkeys (Callithrix jacchus) belong to a clade of primates with a high incidence of biparental care and also synthesize a structurally distinct variant of OT (proline instead of leucine at the 8th amino acid position; Pro(8)-OT). We examined the roles of the OT and AVP systems in the control of responses to infant stimuli in marmoset monkeys. We administered neuropeptide receptor agonists and antagonists to male and female marmosets, and then exposed them to visual and auditory infant-related and control stimuli. Intranasal Pro(8)-OT decreased latencies to respond to infant stimuli in males, and intranasal AVP decreased latencies to respond to infant stimuli in females. Our study is the first to demonstrate that Pro(8)-OT and AVP alter responsiveness to infant stimuli in a biparental New World monkey. Across species, the effects of OT and AVP on parental behavior appear to vary by species-typical caregiving responsibilities in males and females. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  3. Oxytocin--its role in male reproduction and new potential therapeutic uses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thackare, Hemlata; Nicholson, Helen D; Whittington, Kate

    2006-01-01

    Oxytocin (OT) is traditionally thought of as a "female" neurohypophysis hormone due to its role in parturition and milk ejection. However, OT is recognized as having endocrine and paracrine roles in male reproduction. At ejaculation, a burst of OT is released from the neurohypophysis into the systemic circulation and stimulates contractions of the reproductive tract aiding sperm release. There is conclusive evidence that OT is synthesized within the mammalian testis, epididymis and prostate and the presence of OT receptors (OTRs) through the reproductive tract supports a local action for this peptide. OT has a paracrine role in stimulating contractility of the seminiferous tubules, epididymis and the prostate gland. Interestingly, OT has also been shown to modulate androgen levels in these tissues via stimulation of the conversion of testosterone to dihydrotestostone (DHT) by 5alpha-reductase. The elucidation of OT's role in male reproduction has suggested a number of potential therapeutic uses for this hormone. Exogenous administration of OT has, in some cases, been shown to increase the numbers of ejaculated sperm, possibly by stimulating contractions of the reproductive tract and thus aiding sperm passage. Within the prostate, OT has been shown to affect gland growth both directly and via its interaction with androgen metabolism. Prostate pathologies due to unregulated cell proliferation/growth, such as benign prostatic hyperplasia and cancer, are unfortunately very common and few effective treatments are available. Greater understanding of paracrine growth mediators, such as OT, is likely to provide new mechanisms for treating such pathologies.

  4. [Carbetocin versus Oxytocin during caesarean section for preventing postpartum haemorrhage].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pizzagalli, F; Agasse, J; Marpeau, L

    2015-05-01

    The aim of the study was to compare the effectiveness of Carbetocin versus Oxyotcin during caesarean section for preventing postpartum haemorrhage. Prospective observational study (before/after design). Five hundred and forty patients who received an injection of Oxytocin were compared to 262 patients with single injection of 100 micrograms of Carbetocin. The primary outcome was to compare the differential hematocrit level between pre- and postoperative blood samples. The secondary outcome was to compare differential hemoglobin level and the use of complementary therapies for postpartum haemorrhage. We did not find any difference between the Oxytocin and Carbetocin groups on differential hematocrit level. There was no difference between the groups regarding the use of additionnal therapies (Sulproston injections, blood transfusions and surgery methods). The rate of postpartum haemorrhage was similar in the two groups (18.7% vs 21.6%; P=0.33). We found a lower percentage of patients with differential of hemoglobin level between 2 g/dL and 4 g/dL in the Carbetocin group (6.5% vs 15.6%, Poxytocin. Carbetocin seems to reduce the need for postoperative intravenous iron injection. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Masson SAS. All rights reserved.

  5. Salubrious effects of oxytocin on social stress-induced deficits

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, Adam S.; Wang, Zuoxin

    2012-01-01

    Social relationships are a fundamental aspect of life, affecting social, psychological, physiological, and behavioral functions. While social interactions can attenuate stress and promote health, disruption, confrontations, isolation, or neglect in the social environment can each be major stressors. Social stress can impair the basal function and stress-induced activation of the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis, impairing function of multiple biological systems and posing a risk to mental and physical health. In contrast, social support can ameliorate stress-induced physiological and immunological deficits, reducing the risk of subsequent psychological distress and improving an individual's overall well-being. For better clinical treatment of these physiological and mental pathologies, it is necessary to understand the regulatory mechanisms of stress-induced pathologies as well as determine the underlying biological mechanisms that regulate social buffering of the stress system. A number of ethologically relevant animal models of social stress and species that form strong adult social bonds have been utilized to study the etiology, treatment, and prevention of stress-related disorders. While undoubtedly a number of biological pathways contribute to the social buffering of the stress response, the convergence of evidence denotes the regulatory effects of oxytocin in facilitating social bond-promoting behaviors and their effect on the stress response. Thus, oxytocin may be perceived as a common regulatory element of the social environment, stress response, and stress-induced risks on mental and physical health. PMID:22178036

  6. The effects of exercise training and caloric restriction on the cardiac oxytocin natriuretic peptide system in the diabetic mouse

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Broderick TL

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Tom L Broderick,1 Marek Jankowski,2 Jolanta Gutkowska2 1Department of Physiology, Laboratory of Diabetes and Exercise Metabolism, Midwestern University, Glendale, AZ, USA; 2Department of Medicine, Laboratory of Cardiovascular Biochemistry, Centre Hospitalier de l‘Université de Montréal-Hôtel-Dieu, Montréal, QC, Canada Background: Regular exercise training (ET and caloric restriction (CR are the frontline strategies in the treatment of type 2 diabetes mellitus with the aim at reducing cardiometabolic risk. ET and CR improve body weight and glycemic control, and experimental studies indicate that these paradigms afford cardioprotection. In this study, the effects of combined ET and CR on the cardioprotective oxytocin (OT–natriuretic peptide (NP system were determined in the db/db mouse, a model of type 2 diabetes associated with insulin resistance, hyperglycemia, and obesity. Methods: Five-week-old male db/db mice were assigned to the following groups: sedentary, ET, and ET + CR. Nonobese heterozygote littermates served as controls. ET was performed on a treadmill at moderate intensity, and CR was induced by reducing food intake by 30% of that consumed by sedentary db/db mice for a period of 8 weeks. Results: After 8 weeks, only ET + CR, but not ET, slightly improved body weight compared to sedentary db/db mice. Regardless of the treatment, db/db mice remained hyperglycemic. Hearts from db/db mice demonstrated reduced expression of genes linked to the cardiac OT–NP system. In fact, compared to control mice, mRNA expression of GATA binding protein 4 (GATA4, OT receptor, OT, brain NP, NP receptor type C, and endothelial nitric oxide synthase (eNOS was decreased in hearts from sedentary db/db mice. Both ET alone and ET + CR increased the mRNA expression of GATA4 compared to sedentary db/db mice. Only ET combined with CR produced increased eNOS mRNA and protein expression. Conclusion: Our data indicate that enhancement of eNOS by combined

  7. Effects of paternal deprivation on cocaine-induced behavioral response and hypothalamic oxytocin immunoreactivity and serum oxytocin level in female mandarin voles.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Jianli; Fang, Qianqian; Yang, Chenxi

    2017-09-15

    Early paternal behavior plays a critical role in behavioral development in monogamous species. The vast majority of laboratory studies investigating the influence of parental behavior on cocaine vulnerability focus on the effects of early maternal separation. However, comparable studies on whether early paternal deprivation influences cocaine-induced behavioral response are substantially lacking. Mandarin vole (Microtus mandarinus) is a monogamous rodent with high levels of paternal care. After mandarin vole pups were subjected to early paternal deprivation, acute cocaine- induced locomotion, anxiety- like behavior and social behavior were examined in 45day old female pups, while hypothalamic oxytocin immunoreactivity and serum oxytocin level were also assessed. We found that cocaine increased locomotion and decreased social investigation, contact behavior and serum oxytocin level regardless of paternal care. Cocaine increased anxiety levels and decreased oxytocin immunoreactive neurons of the paraventricular nuclei and supraoptic nuclei in the bi-parental care group, whilst there were no specific effects in the paternal deprivation group. These results indicate that paternal deprivation results in different behavioral response to acute cocaine exposure in adolescents, which may be in part associated with the alterations in oxytocin immunoreactivity and peripheral OT level. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  8. Perception of social interaction compresses subjective duration in an oxytocin-dependent manner.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Rui; Yuan, Xiangyong; Chen, Kepu; Jiang, Yi; Zhou, Wen

    2018-05-22

    Communication through body gestures permeates our daily life. Efficient perception of the message therein reflects one's social cognitive competency. Here we report that such competency is manifested temporally as shortened subjective duration of social interactions: motion sequences showing agents acting communicatively are perceived to be significantly shorter in duration as compared with those acting noncommunicatively. The strength of this effect is negatively correlated with one's autistic-like tendency. Critically, intranasal oxytocin administration restores the temporal compression effect in socially less proficient individuals, whereas the administration of atosiban, a competitive antagonist of oxytocin, diminishes the effect in socially proficient individuals. These findings indicate that perceived time, rather than being a faithful representation of physical time, is highly idiosyncratic and ingrained with one's personality trait. Moreover, they suggest that oxytocin is involved in mediating time perception of social interaction, further supporting the role of oxytocin in human social cognition. © 2018, Liu et al.

  9. Oxytocin augmentation during labor: how to implement medical guidelines into clinical practice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Holmgren, Stina; Silfver, Kristina Gren; Lind, Cecilia; Nordström, Lennart

    2011-11-01

    To describe an extensive process to implement guidelines for oxytocin use during labor and to report its effects on compliance to clinical practice guidelines after 1 year. A multifaceted strategy was developed to involve all obstetric staff and identify possible local barriers to change in advance. The process lasted for more than 1 year. To describe the implementation of oxytocin use according to the new guidelines, and to compare management in clinical practice with guideline recommendations from audits performed before and after the project. Identification of possible barriers to change, academic detailing, audits with feedback, and local opinion leaders were important factors for a successful process. Documentation of the indication for oxytocin use increased from 54% before, to 86% after the completion of the project (Pcheck list to monitor oxytocin use. However, audits with feedback need to continue for medical safety, and have been planned to take place every 6 months. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  10. Oxytocin receptor antagonist atosiban impairs consolidation, but not reconsolidation of contextual fear memory in rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abdullahi, Payman Rasise; Eskandarian, Sharaf; Ghanbari, Ali; Rashidy-Pour, Ali

    2018-05-23

    There is increasing evidence that oxytocin is involved in learning and memory process. This study investigated the effects of blockade of oxytocin receptors using the selective oxytocin receptor antagonist atosiban (ATO) on contextual fear memory consolidation and reconsolidation in male rats. Post-training injections of different doses of ATO (1, 10, 100 or 1000 µg/kg) impaired the 48 h retention performance in a dose-dependent manner. The same doses of ATO following memory reactivation did not impair subsequent expression of contextual fear memories which formed under low or high shock intensities and tested 24 h or one week following memory reactivation. Also, no effect was found when ATO was administrated in the absence of memory reactivation. Our finding is the first report that indicates endogenous oxytocin released during training play an important role in the consolidation, but not reconsolidation of contextual fear memory in rats. Copyright © 2018. Published by Elsevier B.V.

  11. Decreased number of oxytocin neurons in the paraventricular nucleus of the human hypothalamus in AIDS

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Purba, J. S.; Hofman, M. A.; Portegies, P.; Troost, D.; Swaab, D. F.

    1993-01-01

    The number of immunocytochemically identified vasopressin (AVP) and oxytocin (OXT) neurons was determined morphometrically in the paraventricular nucleus of the hypothalamus of 20 acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS) patients and 10 controls. The AIDS group consisted of 14 homosexual males (age

  12. Test of Association Between 10 SNPs in the Oxytocin Receptor Gene and Conduct Disorder

    OpenAIRE

    Sakai, Joseph T.; Crowley, Thomas J.; Stallings, Michael C.; McQueen, Matthew; Hewitt, John K.; Hopfer, Christian; Hoft, Nicole R.; Ehringer, Marissa A.

    2012-01-01

    Animal and human studies have implicated oxytocin (OXT) in affiliative and prosocial behaviors. We tested whether genetic variation in the OXT receptor (OXTR) gene is associated with conduct disorder (CD).

  13. Oxytocin receptor genetic variation relates to empathy and stress reactivity in humans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rodrigues, Sarina M; Saslow, Laura R; Garcia, Natalia; John, Oliver P; Keltner, Dacher

    2009-12-15

    Oxytocin, a peptide that functions as both a hormone and neurotransmitter, has broad influences on social and emotional processing throughout the body and the brain. In this study, we tested how a polymorphism (rs53576) of the oxytocin receptor relates to two key social processes related to oxytocin: empathy and stress reactivity. Compared with individuals homozygous for the G allele of rs53576 (GG), individuals with one or two copies of the A allele (AG/AA) exhibited lower behavioral and dispositional empathy, as measured by the "Reading the Mind in the Eyes" Test and an other-oriented empathy scale. Furthermore, AA/AG individuals displayed higher physiological and dispositional stress reactivity than GG individuals, as determined by heart rate response during a startle anticipation task and an affective reactivity scale. Our results provide evidence of how a naturally occurring genetic variation of the oxytocin receptor relates to both empathy and stress profiles.

  14. Variation in the oxytocin receptor gene is associated with behavioral and neural correlates of empathic accuracy

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Laursen, Helle Ruff; Siebner, Hartwig Roman; Haren, Tina

    2014-01-01

    The neuromodulators oxytocin and serotonin have been implicated in regulating affective processes underlying empathy. Understanding this dependency, however, has been limited by a lack of objective metrics for measuring empathic performance. Here we employ a novel psychophysical method for measur...

  15. Urinary oxytocin positively correlates with performance in facial visual search in unmarried males, without specific reaction to infant face.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saito, Atsuko; Hamada, Hiroki; Kikusui, Takefumi; Mogi, Kazutaka; Nagasawa, Miho; Mitsui, Shohei; Higuchi, Takashi; Hasegawa, Toshikazu; Hiraki, Kazuo

    2014-01-01

    The neuropeptide oxytocin plays a central role in prosocial and parental behavior in non-human mammals as well as humans. It has been suggested that oxytocin may affect visual processing of infant faces and emotional reaction to infants. Healthy male volunteers (N = 13) were tested for their ability to detect infant or adult faces among adult or infant faces (facial visual search task). Urine samples were collected from all participants before the study to measure the concentration of oxytocin. Urinary oxytocin positively correlated with performance in the facial visual search task. However, task performance and its correlation with oxytocin concentration did not differ between infant faces and adult faces. Our data suggests that endogenous oxytocin is related to facial visual cognition, but does not promote infant-specific responses in unmarried men who are not fathers.

  16. Urinary oxytocin positively correlates with performance in facial visual search in unmarried males, without specific reaction to infant face

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Atsuko eSaito

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available The neuropeptide oxytocin plays a central role in prosocial and parental behavior in non-human mammals as well as humans. It has been suggested that oxytocin may affect visual processing of infant faces and emotional reaction to infants. Healthy male volunteers (N = 13 were tested for their ability to detect infant or adult faces among adult or infant faces (facial visual search task. Urine samples were collected from all participants before the study to measure the concentration of oxytocin. Urinary oxytocin positively correlated with performance in the facial visual search task. However, task performance and its correlation with oxytocin concentration did not differ between infant faces and adult faces. Our data suggests that endogenous oxytocin is related to facial visual cognition, but does not promote infant-specific responses in unmarried men who are not fathers.

  17. Research Review: Social motivation and oxytocin in autism – implications for joint attention development and intervention

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stavropoulos, Katherine K. M.; Carver, Leslie J.

    2013-01-01

    Background and Scope The social motivation hypothesis (SMH) suggests that individuals with autism spectrum disorders (ASD) are less intrinsically rewarded by social stimuli than their neurotypical peers. This difference in social motivation has been posited as a factor contributing to social deficits in ASD. Social motivation is thought to involve the neuropeptide oxytocin. Here, we review the evidence for oxytocin effects in ASD, and discuss its potential role in one important social cognitive behavior. Methods Systematic searches were conducted using the PsychINFO and MEDLINE databases and the search terms “oxytocin”, and “autism”; the same databases were used for separate searches for “joint attention”, “intervention”, and “autism”, using the same inclusion criteria as an earlier 2011 review but updating it for the period 2010 to October 2012. Findings Several studies suggest that giving oxytocin to both individuals with ASD and typically developing individuals can enhance performance on social cognitive tasks. Studies that have attempted to intervene in joint attention in ASD suggest that social motivation may be a particular obstacle to lasting effects. Conclusions The review of the evidence for the SMH suggests a potential role for oxytocin in social motivation deficits in ASD. Because of its importance for later communicative and social development, the focus here is on implications of oxytocin and social motivation in the development of and interventions in joint attention. Joint attention is a central impairment in ASD, and as a result is the focus of several behavioral interventions. In describing this previous research on joint attention interventions in ASD, we pay particular attention to problems encountered in such studies, and propose ways that oxytocin may facilitate behavioral intervention in this area. For future research, integrating behavioral and pharmacological interventions (oxytocin administration) would be a worthwhile

  18. The other side of the coin: Oxytocin decreases the adherence to fairness norms

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sina eRadke

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available Oxytocin has been implicated in prosocial behaviors such as trust and generosity. Yet, these effects appear to strongly depend on characteristics of the situation and the people with whom we interact or make decisions. Norms and rules can facilitate and guide our actions, with fairness being a particularly salient and fundamental norm. The current study investigated the effects of intranasal oxytocin administration on fairness considerations in social decision-making in a double‐blind, placebo‐controlled within‐subject design. After having received 24 IU of oxytocin or placebo, participants completed a one‐shot Dictator Game and played the role of the responder in a modified version of the Ultimatum Game, in which an unfair offer of 8 coins for the proposer and 2 coins for the responder is paired with either a fair‐ (5:5 or no‐alternative (8:2. Rejection rates were higher when a fair alternative had been available than when there was no alternative to an unfair offer. Importantly, oxytocin did not de- or increase rejection rates overall, but reduced the sensitivity to contextual fairness, i.e. the context of alternatives in which an offer was made. As dictators, participants allocated less coins to the recipient when given oxytocin than when given placebo, indicating a decline in generosity. These results suggest that oxytocin decreases the adherence to fairness norms in social settings where others are likely to be perceived as not belonging to one’s ingroup. While our findings do not support the prosocial conception of oxytocin, they corroborate recent ideas that the effects of oxytocin are more nuanced than assumed in the past.

  19. PLASMA OXYTOCIN LEVELS PREDICT SOCIAL CUE RECOGNITION IN INDIVIDUALS WITH SCHIZOPHRENIA

    OpenAIRE

    Strauss, Gregory P.; Keller, William R.; Koenig, James I.; Gold, James M.; Frost, Katherine H.; Buchanan, Robert W.

    2015-01-01

    Lower endogenous levels of the neuropeptide oxytocin may be an important biological predictor of social cognition impairments in schizophrenia (SZ). Prior studies have demonstrated that lower-level social cognitive processes (e.g., facial affect perception) are significantly associated with reduced plasma oxytocin levels in SZ; however, it is unclear whether higher-level social cognition, which requires inferential processes and knowledge not directly presented in the stimulus, is associated ...

  20. A single dose of oxytocin nasal spray improves higher-order social cognition in schizophrenia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guastella, Adam J; Ward, Philip B; Hickie, Ian B; Shahrestani, Sara; Hodge, Marie Antoinette Redoblado; Scott, Elizabeth M; Langdon, Robyn

    2015-11-01

    Schizophrenia is associated with significant impairments in both higher and lower order social cognitive performance and these impairments contribute to poor social functioning. People with schizophrenia report poor social functioning to be one of their greatest unmet treatment needs. Recent studies have suggested the potential of oxytocin as such a treatment, but mixed results render it uncertain what aspects of social cognition are improved by oxytocin and, subsequently, how oxytocin might best be applied as a therapeutic. The aim of this study was to determine whether a single dose of oxytocin improved higher-order and lower-order social cognition performance for patients with schizophrenia across a well-established battery of social cognition tests. Twenty-one male patients received both a single dose of oxytocin nasal spray (24IU) and a placebo, two weeks apart in a randomized within-subjects placebo controlled design. Following each administration, participants completed the social cognition tasks, as well as a test of general neurocognition. Results revealed that oxytocin particularly enhanced performance on higher order social cognition tasks, with no effects on general neurocognition. Results for individual tasks showed most improvement on tests measuring appreciation of indirect hints and recognition of social faux pas. These results suggest that oxytocin, if combined to enhance social cognition learning, may be beneficial when targeted at higher order social cognition domains. This study also suggests that these higher order tasks, which assess social cognitive processing in a social communication context, may provide useful markers of response to oxytocin in schizophrenia. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  1. A comparison of breast stimulation and intravenous oxytocin for the augmentation of labor.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Curtis, P; Resnick, J C; Evens, S; Thompson, C J

    1999-06-01

    Breast stimulation to augment labor has been used for centuries in tribal societies and by midwives. In recent years it has been shown to be effective in ripening the cervix, inducing labor, and as an alternative to oxytocin for the contraction stress test. This study compared the effectiveness of breast stimulation with oxytocin infusion in augmenting labor. Women admitted to the labor ward were eligible for the study if they had inadequate labor with premature rupture of the membranes and met inclusion criteria. They were assigned to oxytocin augmentation or breast stimulation (manual or pump), and were switched to oxytocin in the event of method failure. Outcomes included time to delivery, intervention to delivery, proportion of spontaneous deliveries, and Apgar scores. One hundred participants were needed in each arm of the study to demonstrate a 2- to 3-hour difference in delivery time, with a power of 80 percent. Analysis was performed on 79 women, of whom 49 were in the breast stimulation group and 30 in the oxytocin group. Sixty-five percent of the participants failed breast stimulation and were switched to oxytocin infusion. Although augmentation start to delivery was shorter for the oxytocin group (p < 0.001), no differences in total labor time occurred between the groups. Nulliparas receiving breast stimulation had more spontaneous (relative risk 1.7, p = 0.04), and fewer instrumental deliveries than those receiving oxytocin (relative risk 0.2, p = 0.02). No significant differences in adverse fetal outcomes occurred between the study groups. The small number of participants and a variety of problems with the conduct of the study prevented the formulation of reliable conclusions from the results. However, the study provided important insights into the feasibility and problems of developing a high-quality randomized trial of augmentation by breast stimulation.

  2. Effects of the Adult Attachment Projective Picture System on oxytocin and cortisol blood levels in mothers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sabrina Krause

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available Oxytocin, a small neuropeptide of nine amino acids, has been characterized as the hormone of affiliation and is stimulated, for instance, in mothers when interacting with their offspring. Variations in maternal oxytocin levels were reported to predict differences in the quality of care provided by mothers. In this study, the Adult Attachment Projective Picture System (AAP as a valid measure to assess attachment representations was used as an activating attachment-related stimulus. We investigated whether the AAP induces a release of oxytocin in mothers with a secure attachment representation and a stress-related cortisol response in mothers with an insecure attachment representation. Therefore, pre-post effects of AAP administration on plasma oxytocin and serum cortisol levels were investigated in n = 44 mothers 3 months after parturition. Oxytocin levels increased from pre to post by the significant majority of 73% participants (p = .004 and cortisol decreased by the significant majority of 73% participants (p = .004. Interestingly, no association between alterations in oxytocin and cortisol were found; this suggests taking a model of two independent processes into considerations. These results show that the AAP test procedure induces an oxytocin response. Concerning the results within the four AAP representation subgroups, our hypothesis of a particularly strong increase in oxytocin in secure mothers was not confirmed; however, in secure mothers we observed a particularly strong decrease in cortisol, consistent with our hypotheses. Effect sizes are reported, allowing the replication of results in a larger study with sufficient sample size to draw final conclusions with respect to differences in OT and cortisol alterations depending on attachment representation. When interpreting the results, one should keep in mind that this study investigated lactating mothers. Thus, the generalizability of results is limited and future studies should

  3. [Oxytocin, a mediator of anti-stress, well-being, social interaction, growth and healing].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Uvnas-Moberg, Kerstin; Petersson, Maria

    2005-01-01

    The neuroendocrine and physiological systems related to pain and stress have long been subjected to study. More recently, the corresponding systems promoting anti-stress and restoration have also come into focus. It is not only important to investigate the mechanisms underlying disease but also to examine the physiological and psychological mechanisms which protect and heal the body and soul. The nonapeptide oxytocin, originally known to stimulate labour and milk ejection, appears to play an important role in this regard. Oxytocin can induce anti-stress-like effects such as reduction of blood pressure and cortisol levels. It increases pain thresholds, exerts an anxiolytic-like effect and stimulates various types of positive social interaction. In addition, it promotes growth and healing. Repeated exposure to oxytocin causes long-lasting effects by influencing the activity of other transmitter systems, a pattern which makes oxytocin potentially clinically relevant. Oxytocin can be released by various types of non-noxious sensory stimulation, for example by touch and warmth. Ingestion of food triggers oxytocin release by activation of vagal afferents. Most likely, oxytocin can also be released by stimulation of other senses such as olfaction, as well as by certain types of sound and light. In addition, purely psychological mechanisms may trigger the release of oxytocin. This means that positive interaction involving touch and psychological support may be health-promoting. The social interaction of daily life, as well as a positive environment, continuously activate this system. In addition, various types of psychotherapy involving transfer of support, warmth and empathy are likely to induce similar effects, which thus contribute to the positive effects of these kinds of therapies.

  4. Oxytocin course over pregnancy and postpartum period and the association with postpartum depressive symptoms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jobst, Andrea; Krause, Daniela; Maiwald, Carina; Härtl, Kristin; Myint, Aye-Mu; Kästner, Ralph; Obermeier, Michael; Padberg, Frank; Brücklmeier, Benedikt; Weidinger, Elif; Kieper, Susann; Schwarz, Markus; Zill, Peter; Müller, Norbert

    2016-08-01

    During the postpartum period, women are at higher risk of developing a mental disorder such as postpartum depression (PPD), a disorder that associates with mother-infant bonding and child development. Oxytocin is considered to play a key role in mother-infant bonding and social interactions and altered oxytocin plasma concentrations were found to be associated with PPD. In the present study, we evaluated oxytocin plasma levels and depressive symptoms during pregnancy and the postpartum period in healthy women. We evaluated 100 women twice during pregnancy (weeks 35 and 38) and three times in the postpartum period (within 2 days and 7 weeks and 6 months after delivery) by measuring oxytocin plasma levels with enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) and assessing depressive symptoms with the Montgomery-Asberg Depression Rating Scale. Oxytocin plasma levels significantly increased from the 35th week of gestation to 6 months postpartum in all women. However, levels decreased from the 38th week of gestation to 2 days after delivery in participants with postpartum depressive symptoms, whereas they continuously increased in the group without postpartum depressive symptoms; the difference between the course of oxytocin levels in the two groups was significant (Δt2-t3: t = 2.14; p = 0.036*). Previous depressive episodes and breastfeeding problems predicted postpartum depressive symptoms. Our results indicate that alterations in the oxytocin system during pregnancy might be specific for women who develop postpartum depressive symptoms. Future studies should investigate whether oxytocin plasma levels might have predictive value in women at high risk for PPD.

  5. Effects of the Adult Attachment Projective Picture System on Oxytocin and Cortisol Blood Levels in Mothers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krause, Sabrina; Pokorny, Dan; Schury, Katharina; Doyen-Waldecker, Cornelia; Hulbert, Anna-Lena; Karabatsiakis, Alexander; Kolassa, Iris-Tatjana; Gündel, Harald; Waller, Christiane; Buchheim, Anna

    2016-01-01

    Oxytocin, a small neuropeptide of nine amino acids, has been characterized as the "hormone of affiliation" and is stimulated, for instance, in mothers when interacting with their offspring. Variations in maternal oxytocin levels were reported to predict differences in the quality of care provided by mothers. In this study, the Adult Attachment Projective Picture System (AAP) as a valid measure to assess attachment representations was used as an activating attachment-related stimulus. We investigated whether the AAP induces a release of oxytocin in mothers with a secure attachment representation and a stress-related cortisol response in mothers with an insecure attachment representation. Therefore, pre-post effects of AAP administration on plasma oxytocin and serum cortisol levels were investigated in n = 44 mothers 3 months after parturition. Oxytocin levels increased from pre to post in the significant majority of 73% participants ( p = 0.004) and cortisol decreased in the significant majority of 73% participants ( p = 0.004). Interestingly, no association between alterations in oxytocin and cortisol were found; this suggests taking a model of two independent processes into considerations. These results show that the AAP test procedure induces an oxytocin response. Concerning the results within the four AAP representation subgroups, our hypothesis of a particularly strong increase in oxytocin in secure mothers was not confirmed; however, in secure mothers we observed a particularly strong decrease in cortisol. Effect sizes are reported, allowing the replication of results in a larger study with sufficient sample size to draw final conclusions with respect to differences in OT and cortisol alterations depending on attachment representation. When interpreting the results, one should keep in mind that this study investigated lactating mothers. Thus, the generalizability of results is limited and future studies should investigate non-lactating healthy females as well

  6. Pitocin and autism: An analysis of oxytocin receptor desensitization in the fetus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gottlieb, Mark M

    2016-02-01

    The risk of Pitocin as a cause of autism attributable to oxytocin receptor desensitization in the brain of the fetus is evaluated in terms of a mathematical model. A composite unit, D, for oxytocin receptor desensitization levels is established with the form ((IU-h)/ml)E-3, where IU is the international unit for oxytocin. The desensitization values for oxytocin receptor desensitization at a concentration of 10 nmol of oxytocin per liter for 3, 4.2 and 6h corresponding to 0%, 50% and 100% desensitization are calculated to be 15 D, 21 D, and 30 D, respectively. The permeability of the blood-brain barrier in the fetus to oxytocin is discussed, and the upper limit of the concentration of Pitocin in the placenta, and its possible diffusion into the blood and brain of the fetus, is calculated for a routine dose of 6 milli U per minute of Pitocin over a 12h labor. This dose of Pitocin is shown to result in a desensitization value in units of D that is more than a factor of 10 below the 0% desensitization value of 15 D. This indicates that routine doses of Pitocin are not a significant cause of autism attributable to oxytocin receptor desensitization. This is consistent with the findings of a major epidemiological study of the association of Pitocin with autism in Denmark entitled, "Oxytocin-augmented labor and risk for males", Behavioral Brain Research, May 1, 2015; 284:207-212, which found no association between the use of Pitocin during labor and the incidence of autism for females, and a modest association for males. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  7. Variation in Oxytocin is Related to Variation in Affiliative Behavior in Monogamous, Pairbonded Tamarins

    OpenAIRE

    Snowdon, Charles T.; Pieper, Bridget A.; Boe, Carla Y.; Cronin, Katherine A.; Kurian, Aimee V.; Ziegler, Toni E.

    2010-01-01

    Oxytocin plays an important role in monogamous pairbonded female voles, but not in polygamous voles. Here we examined a socially-monogamous cooperatively breeding primate where both sexes share in parental care and territory defense for within species variation in behavior and female and male oxytocin levels in 14 pairs of cotton-top tamarins (Saguinus oedipus), In order to obtain a stable chronic assessment of hormones and behavior, we observed behavior and collected urinary hormonal samples...

  8. Oxytocin biases men but not women to restore social connections with individuals who socially exclude them

    OpenAIRE

    Xu, Xiaolei; Yao, Shuxia; Xu, Lei; Geng, Yayuan; Zhao, Weihua; Ma, Xiaole; Kou, Juan; Luo, Ruixue; Kendrick, Keith M.

    2017-01-01

    We normally react to individuals who exclude us socially by either avoiding them or increasing our attempts to interact with them. The neuropeptide oxytocin can promote social bonds and reduce social conflict and we therefore investigated whether it facilitates more positive social responses towards individuals who exclude or include us. In a double-blind, placebo-controlled, between-subject design 77 healthy Chinese male and female participants received intranasal oxytocin (40 IU) or placebo...

  9. Oxytocin is associated with PTSD's anxious arousal symptoms in Chinese male earthquake survivors

    OpenAIRE

    Chengqi Cao; Li Wang; Richu Wang; Yulan Qing; Jianxin Zhang

    2014-01-01

    Background: Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is a complex and severe mental disorder triggered by exposure to an extraordinarily traumatic event. Human and animal studies have implied the functional role of the oxytocin system in the development of PTSD (Cochran, Fallon, Hill, & Frazier, 2013; Koch et al., 2014; Olff, 2012). Specification of the role of the oxytocin system in the emergence and progression of PTSD symptomatology would provide evidence to inform both theory and clinical pra...

  10. Elevated plasma oxytocin levels in children with Prader-Willi syndrome compared with healthy unrelated siblings.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnson, Lisa; Manzardo, Ann M; Miller, Jennifer L; Driscoll, Daniel J; Butler, Merlin G

    2016-03-01

    Prader-Willi syndrome (PWS) is a rare genetic disorder associated with distinct abnormal behaviors including hyperphagia, profound social deficits, and obsessive-compulsive tendencies. PWS males showed reduced oxytocin receptor (OTR) gene expression and density in the hypothalamic paraventricular nucleus that may play a role in PWS psychopathology. Oxytocin is an anorexigenic neuropeptide similar to vasopressin that is associated with social cognition and obsessive-compulsive behavior. To evaluate oxytocin biology in PWS, we examined overnight fasting plasma oxytocin levels in 23 children with PWS (mean ± SD age: 8.2 ± 2.0 year) having genetic confirmation and 18 age matched healthy unrelated siblings without PWS (mean ± SD age: 8.2 ± 2.3 year) and a similar gender ratio under the same clinical assessments, specimen processing and laboratory conditions. Multiplex immune assays were carried out using the Milliplex Human Neuropeptide Magnetic panel and the Luminex system. Natural log-transformed oxytocin levels were analyzed using general linear model adjusting for diagnosis, gender, age and body mass index (BMI). Oxytocin plasma levels were significantly elevated in children with PWS (168 ± 121 pg/ml) compared with unrelated and unaffected siblings without the diagnosis of PWS (64.8 ± 83.8 pg/ml, F = 8.8, P model fit R(2) = 0.33 (P < 0.01). The symptoms of hyperphagia, anxiety and repetitive behaviors classically seen in PWS may be related to the disruption of oxytocin responsivity or feedback in the hypothalamic paraventricular nucleus possibly influencing vasopressin signaling. Further study is needed to characterize oxytocin function in PWS. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  11. Hypopituitarism is associated with lower oxytocin concentrations and reduced empathic ability.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Daughters, Katie; Manstead, Antony S R; Rees, D Aled

    2017-07-01

    Central diabetes insipidus is characterised by arginine vasopressin deficiency. Oxytocin is structurally related to vasopressin and is synthesised in the same hypothalamic nuclei, thus we hypothesised that patients with acquired central diabetes insipidus and anterior hypopituitarism would display an oxytocin deficiency. Moreover, psychological research has demonstrated that oxytocin influences social and emotional behaviours, particularly empathic behaviour. We therefore further hypothesised that central diabetes insipidus patients would perform worse on empathy-related tasks, compared to age-matched and gender-matched clinical control (clinical control-isolated anterior hypopituitarism) and healthy control groups. Fifty-six participants (age 46.54 ± 16.30 yrs; central diabetes insipidus: n = 20, 8 males; clinical control: n = 15, 6 males; healthy control: n = 20, 7 males) provided two saliva samples which were analysed for oxytocin and completed two empathy tasks. Hypopituitary patients (both central diabetes insipidus and clinical control groups) had significantly lower oxytocin concentrations compared to healthy control participants. Hypopituitary patients also performed significantly worse on both the reading the mind in the eyes task and the facial expression recognition task compared to healthy control participants. Regression analyses further revealed that central diabetes insipidus patients' oxytocin concentrations significantly predicted their performance on easy items of the reading the mind in the eyes task. Hypopituitarism may therefore be associated with reduced oxytocin concentrations and impaired empathic ability. While further studies are needed to replicate these findings, our data suggest that oxytocin replacement may offer a therapeutic approach to improve psychological well-being in patients with hypopituitarism.

  12. Oxytocin and Social Sensitivity: Gene Polymorphisms in Relation to Depressive Symptoms and Suicidal Ideation

    OpenAIRE

    McQuaid, Robyn J.; McInnis, Opal A.; Matheson, Kimberly; Anisman, Hymie

    2016-01-01

    Although the neuropeptide oxytocin has been associated with enhanced prosocial behaviors, it has also been linked to aggression and mental health disorders. Thus, it was suggested that oxytocin might act by increasing the salience of social stimuli, irrespective of whether these are positive or negative, thus increasing vulnerability to negative mental health outcomes. The current study (N = 243), conducted among White university students, examined the relation of trauma, depressive symptoms ...

  13. Promoting social behavior with oxytocin in high-functioning autism spectrum disorders

    OpenAIRE

    Andari, Elissar; Duhamel, Jean-René; Zalla, Tiziana; Herbrecht, Evelyn; Leboyer, Marion; Sirigu, Angela

    2010-01-01

    Social adaptation requires specific cognitive and emotional competences. Individuals with high-functioning autism or with Asperger syndrome cannot understand or engage in social situations despite preserved intellectual abilities. Recently, it has been suggested that oxytocin, a hormone known to promote mother-infant bonds, may be implicated in the social deficit of autism. We investigated the behavioral effects of oxytocin in 13 subjects with autism. In a simulated ball game where participan...

  14. Oxytocin facilitates fidelity in well-established marmoset pairs by reducing sociosexual behavior toward opposite-sex strangers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cavanaugh, Jon; Mustoe, Aaryn C; Taylor, Jack H; French, Jeffrey A

    2014-11-01

    Behavioral strategies that facilitate the maintenance of social bonds are critical for the preservation of high-quality social relationships. Central oxytocin (OT) activity modulates the behavioral features of socially monogamous relationships in a number of mammalian species (including marmoset monkeys), and plays a vital role in the behavioral maintenance of long-term social relationships. Two distinct variants of OT have been identified in some New World primates (including marmosets; Lee et al., 2011). The marmoset variant of the oxytocin ligand (Pro(8)-OT) is structurally distinct from the consensus mammalian variant of the oxytocin ligand (Leu(8)-OT), due to a proline substitution at the 8th amino-acid position. The goal of the present study was to determine if treating marmosets with Pro(8)-OT, relative to treatments with Leu(8)-OT, control saline, or an OT antagonist, had modulatory effects on the behavioral maintenance of long-term social relationships in marmosets. Treatment with the Pro(8) variant, but not the Leu(8) variant, of OT facilitated fidelity with a long-term partner by reducing time spent in close proximity with an opposite-sex stranger. However, this facilitative effect of Pro(8)-OT on proximity behavior manifested itself differently in male and female marmosets, such that females preferred to interact socially with their partner rather than a stranger when treated with Pro(8)-OT, while males spent less time in close proximity with both their partner and a stranger when treated with Pro(8)-OT. Furthermore, treatment with Pro(8)-OT, but not Leu(8)-OT, significantly delayed the expression of sexual solicitation behavior toward an opposite-sex stranger in both male and female marmosets, but had no effect on sociosexual behavior directed toward a long-term partner. These results suggest that the OT system is highly involved in reducing fidelity-threatening behaviors in well-established marmoset pairs, and that the effects were only produced by

  15. Do marmosets care to share? Oxytocin treatment reduces prosocial behavior toward strangers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mustoe, Aaryn C; Cavanaugh, Jon; Harnisch, April M; Thompson, Breanna E; French, Jeffrey A

    2015-05-01

    Cooperatively-breeding and socially-monogamous primates, like marmosets and humans, exhibit high levels of social tolerance and prosociality toward others. Oxytocin (OXT) generally facilitates prosocial behavior, but there is growing recognition that OXT modulation of prosocial behavior is shaped by the context of social interactions and by other motivational states such as arousal or anxiety. To determine whether prosociality varies based on social context, we evaluated whether marmoset donors (Callithrix penicillata) preferentially rewarded pairmates versus opposite-sex strangers in a prosocial food-sharing task. To examine potential links among OXT, stress systems, and prosociality, we evaluated whether pretrial cortisol levels in marmosets altered the impact of OXT on prosocial responses. Marmosets exhibited spontaneous prosociality toward others, but they did so preferentially toward strangers compared to their pairmates. When donor marmosets were treated with marmoset-specific Pro(8)-OXT, they exhibited reduced prosociality toward strangers compared to marmosets treated with saline or consensus-mammalian Leu(8)-OXT. When pretrial cortisol levels were lower, marmosets exhibited higher prosociality toward strangers. These findings demonstrate that while marmosets show spontaneous prosocial responses toward others, they do so preferentially toward opposite-sex strangers. Cooperative breeding may be associated with the expression of prosociality, but the existence of a pair-bond between marmoset partners appears to be neither necessary nor sufficient for the expression of spontaneous prosocial responses. Furthermore, high prosociality toward strangers is significantly reduced in marmosets treated with Pro(8)-OXT, suggesting that OXT does not universally enhance prosociality, but, rather OXT modulation of prosocial behavior varies depending on social context. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  16. Oxytocin mechanisms of stress response and aggression in a territorial finch.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goodson, James L; Schrock, Sara E; Kingsbury, Marcy A

    2015-03-15

    All jawed vertebrates produce a form of oxytocin (OT), and in birds, mammals and fish, OT is strongly associated with affiliation. However, remarkably few data are available on the roles of OT and OT receptors (OTRs) in aggression. Because OT and OTRs exert anxiolytic effects in mammals (although context-specific) and modulate stress coping, we hypothesized that OTR activation is at least permissive for territorial aggression. Indeed, we find that peripheral injections of an OTR antagonist significantly reduce male-male and female-female aggression in a highly territorial finch. This finding suggests the hypothesis that aggression is accompanied by an increase in transcriptional (Fos) activity of OT neurons, but contrary to this hypothesis, we find that dominant male residents do not elevate OT-Fos colocalization following an aggressive encounter and that OT-Fos colocalization in the preoptic area and hypothalamus correlates negatively with aggression. Furthermore, OT-Fos colocalization increases dramatically in males that were aggressively subjugated or pursued by a human hand, likely reflecting OT modulation of stress response. Because OT inhibits the hypothalamo-pituitary-adrenal axis, the antagonist effects may reflect the fact that aggressive birds and mammals tend to be hyporesponsive to stress. If this is correct, then 1) the observed effects of OTR antagonism may reflect alterations in corticosterone feedback to the brain rather than centrally mediated OTR effects, and 2) the negative correlation between OT-Fos colocalization and aggression may reflect the fact that more aggressive, stress hyporesponsive males require less inhibition of the hypothalamo-pituitary-adrenal axis than do less aggressive males, despite the requirement of that inhibition for the normal display of aggression. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  17. Pulmonary Delivery of an Ultra-Fine Oxytocin Dry Powder Formulation: Potential for Treatment of Postpartum Haemorrhage in Developing Countries

    OpenAIRE

    Prankerd, Richard J.; Nguyen, Tri-Hung; Ibrahim, Jibriil P.; Bischof, Robert J.; Nassta, Gemma C.; Olerile, Livesey D.; Russell, Adrian S.; Meiser, Felix; Parkington, Helena C.; Coleman, Harold A.; Morton, David A. V.; McIntosh, Michelle P.

    2013-01-01

    Oxytocin is recommended by the World Health Organisation as the most effective uterotonic for the prevention and treatment of postpartum haemorrhage. The requirement for parenteral administration by trained healthcare providers and the need for the drug solution to be maintained under cold-chain storage limit the use of oxytocin in the developing world. In this study, a spray-dried ultrafine formulation of oxytocin was developed with an optimal particle size diameter (1-5 µm) to facilitate ae...

  18. DNA methylation of specific CpG sites in the promoter region regulates the transcription of the mouse oxytocin receptor.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shimrat Mamrut

    Full Text Available Oxytocin is a peptide hormone, well known for its role in labor and suckling, and most recently for its involvement in mammalian social behavior. All central and peripheral actions of oxytocin are mediated through the oxytocin receptor, which is the product of a single gene. Transcription of the oxytocin receptor is subject to regulation by gonadal steroid hormones, and is profoundly elevated in the uterus and mammary glands during parturition. DNA methylation is a major epigenetic mechanism that regulates gene transcription, and has been linked to reduced expression of the oxytocin receptor in individuals with autism. Here, we hypothesized that transcription of the mouse oxytocin receptor is regulated by DNA methylation of specific sites in its promoter, in a tissue-specific manner. Hypothalamus-derived GT1-7, and mammary-derived 4T1 murine cell lines displayed negative correlations between oxytocin receptor transcription and methylation of the gene promoter, and demethylation caused a significant enhancement of oxytocin receptor transcription in 4T1 cells. Using a reporter gene assay, we showed that methylation of specific sites in the gene promoter, including an estrogen response element, significantly inhibits transcription. Furthermore, methylation of the oxytocin receptor promoter was found to be differentially correlated with oxytocin receptor expression in mammary glands and the uterus of virgin and post-partum mice, suggesting that it plays a distinct role in oxytocin receptor transcription among tissues and under different physiological conditions. Together, these results support the hypothesis that the expression of the mouse oxytocin receptor gene is epigenetically regulated by DNA methylation of its promoter.

  19. Self-soothing behaviors with particular reference to oxytocin release induced by non-noxious sensory stimulation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Uvnäs-Moberg, Kerstin; Handlin, Linda; Petersson, Maria

    2014-01-01

    Oxytocin, a hypothalamic nonapeptide, is linked to increased levels of social interaction, well-being and anti-stress effects. The effects of oxytocin that is released by sensory stimulation during different kinds of interactive behaviors are often underestimated or even forgotten. In fact, many of the positive effects caused during interaction, such a wellbeing, stress reduction and even health promotion, are indeed linked to oxytocin released in response to activation of various types of sensory nerves. Oxytocin is released in response to activation of sensory nerves during labor, breastfeeding and sexual activity. In addition oxytocin is released in response to low intensity stimulation of the skin, e.g., in response to touch, stroking, warm temperature, etc. Consequently oxytocin is not only released during interaction between mothers and infants, but also during positive interaction between adults or between humans and animals. Finally oxytocin is also released in response to suckling and food intake. Oxytocin released in the brain in response to sensory stimulation as a consequence of these types of interactive behaviors, contributes to every day wellbeing and ability to handle stress. Food intake or sex may be used or even abused to achieve oxytocin-linked wellbeing and stress relief to compensate for lack of good relationships or when the levels of anxiety are high. The present review article will summarize the role played by oxytocin released by sensory (in particular somatosensory) stimulation, during various kinds of interactive behaviors. Also the fact that the anti-stress effects of oxytocin are particularly strong when oxytocin is released in response to "low intensity" stimulation of the skin will be highlighted.

  20. The oxytocin/vasopressin receptor antagonist atosiban delays the gastric emptying of a semisolid meal compared to saline in human

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ekberg Olle

    2006-03-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Oxytocin is released in response to a meal. Further, mRNA for oxytocin and its receptor have been found throughout the gastrointestinal (GI tract. The aim of this study was therefore to examine whether oxytocin, or the receptor antagonist atosiban, influence the gastric emptying. Methods Ten healthy volunteers (five men were examined regarding gastric emptying at three different occasions: once during oxytocin stimulation using a pharmacological dose; once during blockage of the oxytocin receptors (which also blocks the vasopressin receptors and thereby inhibiting physiological doses of oxytocin; and once during saline infusion. Gastric emptying rate (GER was assessed and expressed as the percentage reduction in antral cross-sectional area from 15 to 90 min after ingestion of rice pudding. The assessment was performed by real-time ultrasonography. At the same time, the feeling of satiety was registered using visual satiety scores. Results Inhibition of the binding of endogenous oxytocin by the receptor antagonist delayed the GER by 37 % compared to saline (p = 0.037. In contrast, infusion of oxytocin in a dosage of 40 mU/min did not affect the GER (p = 0.610. Satiation scores areas in healthy subjects after receiving atosiban or oxytocin did not show any significant differences. Conclusion Oxytocin and/or vasopressin seem to be regulators of gastric emptying during physiological conditions, since the receptor antagonist atosiban delayed the GER. However, the actual pharmacological dose of oxytocin in this study had no effect. The effect of oxytocin and vasopressin on GI motility has to be further evaluated.

  1. Self-soothing behaviors with particular reference to oxytocin release induced by non-noxious sensory stimulation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kerstin eUvnäs-Moberg

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Oxytocin, a hypothalamic nonapeptide, is linked to increased levels of social interaction, well-being and anti-stress effects. The effects of oxytocin that is released by sensory stimulation during different kinds of interactive behaviors are often underestimated or even forgotten. In fact, many of the positive effects caused during interaction, such a wellbeing, stress reduction and even health promotion, are indeed linked to oxytocin released in response to activation of various types of sensory nerves. Oxytocin is released in response to activation of sensory nerves during labor, breastfeeding and sexual activity. In addition oxytocin is released in response to low intensity stimulation of the skin, e.g. in response to touch, stroking, warm temperature etc . Consequently oxytocin is not only released during interaction between mothers and infants, but also during positive interaction between adult or between humans and animals. Finally oxytocin is also released in response to suckling and food intake. Oxytocin released in the brain in response to sensory stimulation as a consequence of these types of interactive behaviors, contributes to every day wellbeing and ability to handle stress. Food intake or sex may be used or even abused to achieve oxytocin-linked wellbeing and stress relief to compensate for lack of good relationships or when the levels of anxiety are high. The present review article will summarize the role played by oxytocin released by sensory (in particular somatosensory stimulation, during various kinds of interactive behaviors. Also the fact that the anti-stress effects of oxytocin are particularly strong when oxytocin is released in response to low intensity stimulation of the skin will be highlighted.

  2. A randomised controlled trial of sublingual misoprostol and intramuscular oxytocin for prevention of postpartum haemorrhage.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Al-Sawaf, A; El-Mazny, A; Shohayeb, A

    2013-04-01

    This study aims to evaluate the efficacy and side-effects of 200 μg sublingual misoprostol vs 5 IU i.m. oxytocin, administered immediately following cord clamping in normal non-augmented vaginal delivery, in prevention of postpartum haemorrhage (PPH). A total of 104 women were randomised into three groups: misoprostol group (28 patients); oxytocin group (37 patients) and control group (39 patients). Misoprostol and oxytocin significantly minimised the blood loss during the third stage of labour and reduced the need for additional treatments for PPH as compared with the control group. Oxytocin was more effective than misoprostol in minimising blood loss and the need for additional uterotonic treatments. However, a significant decrease in systolic and diastolic blood pressure, associated with tachycardia was observed in the oxytocin group. In conclusion, sublingual misoprostol appears to be less effective than i.m. oxytocin in the prevention of PPH; however, it has the potential advantages of being easily used, cost-effective and stable at room temperature. Therefore, sublingual misoprostol is still a feasible drug for routine management of third stage, especially in areas with limited medical facilities.

  3. Fear or greed? Oxytocin regulates inter-individual conflict by enhancing fear in men.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zheng, Huimin; Kendrick, Keith M; Yu, Rongjun

    2016-09-01

    People may choose non-cooperation in social dilemmas either out of fear (if others choose to defect) or out of greed (when others choose to cooperate). Previous studies have shown that exogenous oxytocin motivates a "tend and defend" pattern in inter-group conflict in which oxytocin stimulates in-group cooperation and out-group defense. Using a double-blind placebo-controlled design combined with a modified Prisoner's dilemma game (PDG), we examined the effect of oxytocin on social motivations in inter-individual conflict in men. Results showed that compared with the placebo group, oxytocin-exposed participants were less cooperative in general. Specifically, oxytocin amplified the effect of fear on defection but did not influence the effect of greed. Another non-social control study confirmed participants' decisions were sensitive to social factors. Our findings suggest that even when social group conflict is removed, oxytocin promotes distrust of strangers in "me and you" inter-individual conflict by elevating social fear in men. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  4. Oxytocin, cortisol and 3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine: neurohormonal aspects of recreational 'ecstasy'.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Parrott, Andrew C

    2016-12-01

    Most research into 3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA) has debated its psychobiological effects in relation to neurotransmission. This article debates the contributory roles of the neurohormones oxytocin and cortisol for their psychobiological effects in humans. The empirical literature on these neurohormones is reviewed and suggestions for future research outlined. Acute MDMA or 'ecstasy' can generate increased levels of oxytocin and cortisol, and these neurohormonal changes may be important for its mood-enhancing and energy-activation effects in humans. However, an initial finding of enhanced sociability correlating with oxytocin levels has not been replicated. Potential reasons are debated. There may be dynamic interactions between the two neurohormones, with greater activation under cortisol, facilitating stronger positive feelings under oxytocin. Chronic regular use of MDMA can adversely affect cortisol in several ways. Regular users show increased cortisol in 3-month hair samples, changes to the cortisol awakening response, and indications of greater daily stress. Furthermore, these cortisol findings suggest changes to the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis. The effects of chronic MDMA usage on oxytocin still need to be investigated. It is concluded that the neurohormones oxytocin and cortisol contribute in various ways to the psychobiological effects of recreational ecstasy/MDMA.

  5. Oxytocin Effect on Collective Decision Making: A Randomized Placebo Controlled Study.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Uri Hertz

    Full Text Available Collective decision making often benefits both the individuals and the group in a variety of contexts. However, for the group to be successful, individuals should be able to strike a balance between their level of competence and their influence on the collective decisions. The hormone oxytocin has been shown to promote trust, conformism and attention to social cues. We wondered if this hormone may increase participants' (unwarranted reliance on their partners' opinion, resulting in a reduction in collective benefit by disturbing the balance between influence and competence. To test this hypothesis we employed a randomized double-blind placebo-controlled design in which male dyads self-administered intranasal oxytocin or placebo and then performed a visual search task together. Compared to placebo, collective benefit did not decrease under oxytocin. Using an exploratory time dependent analysis, we observed increase in collective benefit over time under oxytocin. Moreover, trial-by-trial analysis showed that under oxytocin the more competent member of each dyad was less likely to change his mind during disagreements, while the less competent member showed a greater willingness to change his mind and conform to the opinion of his more reliable partner. This role-dependent effect may be mediated by enhanced monitoring of own and other's performance level under oxytocin. Such enhanced social learning could improve the balance between influence and competence and lead to efficient and beneficial collaboration.

  6. Oxytocin Effect on Collective Decision Making: A Randomized Placebo Controlled Study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hertz, Uri; Kelly, Maria; Rutledge, Robb B; Winston, Joel; Wright, Nicholas; Dolan, Raymond J; Bahrami, Bahador

    2016-01-01

    Collective decision making often benefits both the individuals and the group in a variety of contexts. However, for the group to be successful, individuals should be able to strike a balance between their level of competence and their influence on the collective decisions. The hormone oxytocin has been shown to promote trust, conformism and attention to social cues. We wondered if this hormone may increase participants' (unwarranted) reliance on their partners' opinion, resulting in a reduction in collective benefit by disturbing the balance between influence and competence. To test this hypothesis we employed a randomized double-blind placebo-controlled design in which male dyads self-administered intranasal oxytocin or placebo and then performed a visual search task together. Compared to placebo, collective benefit did not decrease under oxytocin. Using an exploratory time dependent analysis, we observed increase in collective benefit over time under oxytocin. Moreover, trial-by-trial analysis showed that under oxytocin the more competent member of each dyad was less likely to change his mind during disagreements, while the less competent member showed a greater willingness to change his mind and conform to the opinion of his more reliable partner. This role-dependent effect may be mediated by enhanced monitoring of own and other's performance level under oxytocin. Such enhanced social learning could improve the balance between influence and competence and lead to efficient and beneficial collaboration.

  7. Endogenous oxytocin levels are associated with the perception of emotion in dynamic body expressions in schizophrenia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Strauss, Gregory P; Keller, William R; Koenig, James I; Sullivan, Sara K; Gold, James M; Buchanan, Robert W

    2015-03-01

    Lower endogenous oxytocin levels have been associated with impaired social cognition in schizophrenia, particularly facial affect identification. Little is known about the relationship between oxytocin and other forms of emotion perception. In the current study, 41 individuals with schizophrenia (SZ) and 22 demographically matched healthy controls (CN) completed a forced-choice affective body expression classification task. Stimuli included dynamic videos of male and female actors portraying 4 discrete emotions: happiness, sadness, anger, and neutral. Plasma oxytocin levels were determined via radioimmunoassay. Results indicated that SZ had significantly higher plasma oxytocin concentrations than CN. SZ were also less accurate at identifying expressions of happiness and sadness; however, there were no group differences for anger or neutral stimuli. A group×sex interaction was also present, such that female CN were more accurate than male CN, whereas male SZ were more accurate than female SZ. Higher endogenous oxytocin levels were associated with better total recognition in both SZ and CN; this association was specific to females in SZ. Findings indicate that sex plays an important role in identifying emotional expressions in body gestures in SZ, and that individual differences in endogenous oxytocin predict emotion perception accuracy. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  8. Oxytocin biases men but not women to restore social connections with individuals who socially exclude them.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xu, Xiaolei; Yao, Shuxia; Xu, Lei; Geng, Yayuan; Zhao, Weihua; Ma, Xiaole; Kou, Juan; Luo, Ruixue; Kendrick, Keith M

    2017-01-12

    We normally react to individuals who exclude us socially by either avoiding them or increasing our attempts to interact with them. The neuropeptide oxytocin can promote social bonds and reduce social conflict and we therefore investigated whether it facilitates more positive social responses towards individuals who exclude or include us. In a double-blind, placebo-controlled, between-subject design 77 healthy Chinese male and female participants received intranasal oxytocin (40 IU) or placebo before playing a modified virtual ball-tossing game with three fictitious partners who either showed exclusion, inclusion or neutral behavioral interactions with them. Results showed that both male and female subjects threw the ball more often to individuals who excluded rather than included them, although oxytocin did not alter this or awareness/feelings of exclusion or inclusion. However, when subjects returned a week later males, but not females, in the oxytocin group exhibited an increased liking for, and preference for playing again with, players who had previously excluded them. This oxytocin effect was positively associated with independent traits. Our findings suggest that in a collectivist culture oxytocin may promote the desire of males, but not females, with a stronger independent orientation to rebuild social connections with individuals who have previously excluded them.

  9. In vivo somatostatin, vasopressin, and oxytocin synthesis in diabetic rat hypothalamus

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Fernstrom, J.D.; Fernstrom, M.H.; Kwok, R.P.

    1990-01-01

    The in vivo labeling of somatostatin-14, somatostatin-28, arginine vasopressin, and oxytocin was studied in rat hypothalamus after third ventricular administration of [35S]cysteine to streptozotocin-diabetic and normal rats. Immunoreactive somatostatin levels in hypothalamus were unaffected by diabetes, as was the incorporation of [35S]cysteine into hypothalamic somatostatin-14 and somatostatin-28. In contrast, immunoreactive vasopressin levels in hypothalamus and posterior pituitary (and oxytocin levels in posterior pituitary) were below normal in diabetic rats. Moreover, [35S]cysteine incorporation into hypothalamic vasopressin and oxytocin (probably mainly in the paraventricular nucleus because of its proximity to the third ventricular site of label injection) was significantly above normal. The increments in vasopressin and oxytocin labeling were reversed by insulin administration. In vivo cysteine specific activity and the labeling of acid-precipitable protein did not differ between normal and diabetic animals; effects of diabetes on vasopressin and oxytocin labeling were therefore not caused by simple differences in cysteine specific activity. These results suggest that diabetes (1) does not influence the production of somatostatin peptides in hypothalamus but (2) stimulates the synthesis of vasopressin and oxytocin. For vasopressin at least, the increase in synthesis may be a compensatory response to the known increase in its secretion that occurs in uncontrolled diabetes

  10. Effects of oxytocin and methacholine on cyclic nucleotide levels of rabbit myometrium.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schlageter, N; Janis, R A; Gualtieri, R T; Hechter, O

    1980-03-01

    The effects of oxytocin and methacholine on cyclic nucleotide levels in estrogen-primed rabbit myometrium were studied in the presence and absence of 1-methyl-3-isobutyl xanthine (MIX), a phosphodiesterase inhibitor. In the absence of MIX, methacholine increased guanosine 3',5'-cyclic monophosphate (cGMP) levels at a time when contraction was decreasing, but had no influence on adenosine 3',5'-cyclic monophosphate (cAMP) levels. In contrast, oxytocin did not elevate cGMP, but rapidly decreased cAMP levels. MIX (1 mM) increased both cAMP and cGMP levels. Oxytocin or methacholine further increased cGMP, indicating activation of guanylate cyclase. Oxytocin- but not methacholine-induced stimulation of guanylate cyclase was abolished in Ca2+-free solution. Oxytocin increased cAMP over the levels produced by MIX alone, whereas methacholine decreased cAMP below the MIX control values; these effects were insensitive to indomethacin. Tissue levels of cGMP and cAMP did not directly correlate with isometric tension. The results also indicate that both oxytocin and methacholine stimulate guanylate cyclase but have opposing effects on adenylate cyclase of rabbit myometrium.

  11. [Oxytocin administration during labor. Results from the 2010 French National Perinatal Survey].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Belghiti, J; Coulm, B; Kayem, G; Blondel, B; Deneux-Tharaux, C

    2013-11-01

    To estimate the frequency of oxytocin administration during labor, in all women in labor, in low-risk women, and in women with a previous cesarean delivery. Our objectives were also to identify characteristics of women and of maternity units associated with this practice in France. Analysis of the 2010 French Perinatal Survey data (n=14,681 women who delivered in continental France). The frequency of oxytocin administration during labor was estimated in all women in labor (n=12,845) and in low-risk women (n=9798). The independent associations between oxytocin administration during labor and characteristics of women and units were quantified with multivariate logistic regression modeling. Sixty-four percent of laboring women received oxytocin during labor, and 58% of women with a spontaneous onset of labor. In the population of low-risk women with spontaneous labor and epidural, nulliparity and over-weight, as well as the private status and small size of the maternity unit, were independently associated with a more frequent administration of oxytocin during labor. Oxytocin administration during labor is very frequent in France, probably beyond classical indications. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Masson SAS. All rights reserved.

  12. Sex-specific associations between peripheral oxytocin and emotion perception in schizophrenia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rubin, Leah H; Carter, C Sue; Drogos, Lauren; Jamadar, Rhoda; Pournajafi-Nazarloo, Hossein; Sweeney, John A; Maki, Pauline M

    2011-08-01

    We previously reported that higher levels of peripheral oxytocin are associated with lower levels of positive, general, and overall symptoms in women but not in men with schizophrenia. Here we investigate the influence of sex, sex steroid hormone fluctuations, and peripheral oxytocin levels on emotional processing in men and women with schizophrenia. Twenty-two women with schizophrenia and 31 female controls completed the Penn Emotion Acuity Test (PEAT), a facial emotion recognition and perception task, during two menstrual cycle phases: 1) early follicular (Days 2-4; low estrogen/progesterone) and 2) midluteal (Days 20-22; high estrogen/progesterone). Twenty-six males with schizophrenia and 26 male controls completed testing at comparable intervals. We obtained plasma hormone assays of estrogen, progesterone, testosterone, and oxytocin. No sex differences were noted on the PEAT. Plasma oxytocin levels did not fluctuate across phases of the menstrual cycle. However, female patients and controls more accurately identified facial emotions during the early follicular versus midluteal phase (pmen. Like healthy women, women with schizophrenia demonstrate menstrual-cycle dependent fluctuations in recognizing emotional cues. Like healthy women, female patients with higher levels of oxytocin perceived faces as happier. Future studies need to address whether this sex-specific relationship is associated with trust and other positive emotions, and whether exogenous oxytocin might enhance mood states and social interaction in female or all schizophrenia patients. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  13. Disruption of ATCSLD5 results in reduced growth, reduced xylan and homogalacturonan synthase activity and altered xylan occurrence in Arabidopsis

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bernal Giraldo, Adriana Jimena; Jensen, Jacob Krüger; Harholt, Jesper

    2007-01-01

    Members of a large family of cellulose synthase-like genes (CSLs) are predicted to encode glycosyl transferases (GTs) involved in the biosynthesis of plant cell walls. The CSLA and CSLF families are known to contain mannan and glucan synthases, respectively, but the products of other CSLs...... are unknown. Here we report the effects of disrupting ATCSLD5 expression in Arabidopsis. Both stem and root growth were significantly reduced in ATCSLD5 knock-out plants, and these plants also had increased susceptibility to the cellulose synthase inhibitor isoxaben. Antibody and carbohydrate-binding module...

  14. The Williams syndrome prosociality gene GTF2I mediates oxytocin reactivity and social anxiety in a healthy population.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Procyshyn, Tanya L; Spence, Jason; Read, Silven; Watson, Neil V; Crespi, Bernard J

    2017-04-01

    The neurohormone oxytocin plays a central role in human social behaviour and cognition, and oxytocin dysregulation may contribute to psychiatric disorders. However, genetic factors influencing individual variation in the oxytocinergic system remain poorly understood. We genotyped 169 healthy adults for a functional polymorphism in GTF2I ( general transcription factor II-I ), a gene associated with high prosociality and reduced social anxiety in Williams syndrome, a condition reported to involve high oxytocin levels and reactivity. Participants' salivary oxytocin levels were measured before and after watching a validated empathy-inducing video. Oxytocin reactivity, defined as pre- to post-video percentage change in salivary oxytocin, varied substantially and significantly between individuals with different GTF2I genotypes, with, additionally, a trend towards an interaction between genotype and sex. Individuals with more oxytocin-reactive genotypes also reported significantly lower social anxiety. These findings suggest a model whereby GTF2I has a continuum of effects on human sociality, from the extreme social phenotypes and oxytocin dysregulation associated with gene deletion in Williams syndrome, to individual differences in oxytocin reactivity and sociality associated with common polymorphisms in healthy populations. © 2017 The Author(s).

  15. Genomic and epigenetic evidence for oxytocin receptor deficiency in autism

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Worley Gordon

    2009-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Autism comprises a spectrum of behavioral and cognitive disturbances of childhood development and is known to be highly heritable. Although numerous approaches have been used to identify genes implicated in the development of autism, less than 10% of autism cases have been attributed to single gene disorders. Methods We describe the use of high-resolution genome-wide tilepath microarrays and comparative genomic hybridization to identify copy number variants within 119 probands from multiplex autism families. We next carried out DNA methylation analysis by bisulfite sequencing in a proband and his family, expanding this analysis to methylation analysis of peripheral blood and temporal cortex DNA of autism cases and matched controls from independent datasets. We also assessed oxytocin receptor (OXTR gene expression within the temporal cortex tissue by quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction (PCR. Results Our analysis revealed a genomic deletion containing the oxytocin receptor gene, OXTR (MIM accession no.: 167055, previously implicated in autism, was present in an autism proband and his mother who exhibits symptoms of obsessive-compulsive disorder. The proband's affected sibling did not harbor this deletion but instead may exhibit epigenetic misregulation of this gene through aberrant gene silencing by DNA methylation. Further DNA methylation analysis of the CpG island known to regulate OXTR expression identified several CpG dinucleotides that show independent statistically significant increases in the DNA methylation status in the peripheral blood cells and temporal cortex in independent datasets of individuals with autism as compared to control samples. Associated with the increase in methylation of these CpG dinucleotides is our finding that OXTR mRNA showed decreased expression in the temporal cortex tissue of autism cases matched for age and sex compared to controls. Conclusion Together, these data provide

  16. Neuronal nitric oxide synthase is dislocated in type I fibers of myalgic muscle but can recover with physical exercise training

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jensen, L; Andersen, L L; Schrøder, H D

    2015-01-01

    Trapezius myalgia is the most common type of chronic neck pain. While physical exercise reduces pain and improves muscle function, the underlying mechanisms remain unclear. Nitric oxide (NO) signaling is important in modulating cellular function, and a dysfunctional neuronal NO synthase (nNOS) ma...

  17. Enhanced growth and improved vascular function in offspring from successive pregnancies in endothelial nitric oxide synthase knockout mice

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Longo, M; Jain, [No Value; Langenveld, J; Vedernikov, YP; Garfield, RE; Hankins, GDV; Anderson, GD; Saade, GR

    2004-01-01

    Objective: Transgenic mice that lack endothelial nitric oxide synthase have offspring with growth deficiency and abnormal vascular reactivity in later life. Our objective was to evaluate the role of parity in the modulation of the fetal programming of growth and vascular responses in these

  18. Oxytocin receptor polymorphism and childhood social experiences shape adult personality, brain structure and neural correlates of mentalizing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schneider-Hassloff, H; Straube, B; Jansen, A; Nuscheler, B; Wemken, G; Witt, S H; Rietschel, M; Kircher, T

    2016-07-01

    The oxytocin system is involved in human social behavior and social cognition such as attachment, emotion recognition and mentalizing (i.e. the ability to represent mental states of oneself and others). It is shaped by social experiences in early life, especially by parent-infant interactions. The single nucleotid polymorphism rs53576 in the oxytocin receptor (OXTR) gene has been linked to social behavioral phenotypes. In 195 adult healthy subjects we investigated the interaction of OXTR rs53576 and childhood attachment security (CAS) on the personality traits "adult attachment style" and "alexithymia" (i.e. emotional self-awareness), on brain structure (voxel-based morphometry) and neural activation (fMRI) during an interactive mentalizing paradigm (prisoner's dilemma game; subgroup: n=163). We found that in GG-homozygotes, but not in A-allele carriers, insecure childhood attachment is - in adulthood - associated with a) higher attachment-related anxiety and alexithymia, b) higher brain gray matter volume of left amygdala and lower volumes in right superior parietal lobule (SPL), left temporal pole (TP), and bilateral frontal regions, and c) higher mentalizing-related neural activity in bilateral TP and precunei, and right middle and superior frontal gyri. Interaction effects of genotype and CAS on brain volume and/or function were associated with individual differences in alexithymia and attachment-related anxiety. Interactive effects were in part sexually dimorphic. The interaction of OXTR genotype and CAS modulates adult personality as well as brain structure and function of areas implicated in salience processing and mentalizing. Rs53576 GG-homozygotes are partially more susceptible to childhood attachment experiences than A-allele carriers. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  19. Effects of chronic social stress and maternal intranasal oxytocin and vasopressin on offspring interferon γ and behavior

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chris Anthony Murgatroyd

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available Recent studies support the hypothesis that the adverse effects of early life adversity and transgenerational stress on neural plasticity and behavior are mediated by inflammation. The objective of the present study was to investigate the immune and behavioural programming effects of intranasal (IN vasopressin (AVP and oxytocin (OXT treatment of chronic social stress (CSS exposed F1 dams on F2 juvenile female offspring. It was hypothesized that maternal AVP and OXT treatment would have preventative effects on social stress induced deficits in offspring anxiety and social behavior, and that these effects would be associated with changes in interferon γ (IFNγ. Control and CSS exposed F1 dams were administered IN saline, AVP, or OXT during lactation and the F2 juvenile female offspring were assessed for basal plasma IFNγ and perseverative, anxiety, and social behavior. CSS F2 female juvenile offspring had elevated IFNγ levels and exhibited increased repetitive/perseverative and anxiety behaviours and deficits in social behavior. These effects were modulated by AVP and OXT in a context and behavior dependent manner, with OXT exhibiting preventative effects on repetitive and anxiety behaviours and AVP possessing preventative effects on social behavior deficits and anxiety. Basal IFNγ levels were elevated in the F2 offspring of OXT treated F1 dams, but IFNγ was not correlated with the behavioural effects. These results support the hypothesis that maternal AVP and OXT treatment have context and behavior specific effects on peripheral IFNγ levels and perseverative, anxiety, and social behaviours in the female offspring of early life social stress exposed dams. Both maternal AVP and OXT are effective at preventing social stress induced increases in self-directed measures of anxiety, and AVP is particularly effective at preventing impairments in overall social contact. Oxytocin is specifically effective at preventing repetitive

  20. Bacillus caldolyticus prs gene encoding phosphoribosyldiphosphate synthase

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Krath, Britta N.; Hove-Jensen, Bjarne

    1996-01-01

    The prs gene, encoding phosphoribosyl-diphosphate (PRPP) synthase, as well as the flanking DNA sequences were cloned and sequenced from the Gram-positive thermophile, Bacillus caldolyticus. Comparison with the homologous sequences from the mesophile, Bacillus subtilis, revealed a gene (gca......D) encoding N-acetylglucosamine-l-phosphate uridyltransferase upstream of prs, and a gene homologous to ctc downstream of prs. cDNA synthesis with a B. caldolyticus gcaD-prs-ctc-specified mRNA as template, followed by amplification utilising the polymerase chain reaction indicated that the three genes are co......-transcribed. Comparison of amino acid sequences revealed a high similarity among PRPP synthases across a wide phylogenetic range. An E. coli strain harbouring the B. caldolyticus prs gene in a multicopy plasmid produced PRPP synthase activity 33-fold over the activity of a haploid B. caldolyticus strain. B. caldolyticus...

  1. Oxytocin during Development: Possible Organizational Effects on Behavior.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miller, Travis V; Caldwell, Heather K

    2015-01-01

    Oxytocin (Oxt) is a neurohormone known for its physiological roles associated with lactation and parturition in mammals. Oxt can also profoundly influence mammalian social behaviors such as affiliative, parental, and aggressive behaviors. While the acute effects of Oxt signaling on adult behavior have been heavily researched in many species, including humans, the developmental effects of Oxt on the brain and behavior are just beginning to be explored. There is evidence that Oxt in early postnatal and peripubertal development, and perhaps during prenatal life, affects adult behavior by altering neural structure and function. However, the specific mechanisms by which this occurs remain unknown. Thus, this review will detail what is known about how developmental Oxt impacts behavior as well as explore the specific neurochemicals and neural substrates that are important to these behaviors.

  2. Role of Prophylactic Oxytocin in the Third Stage of Labor: Physiologic Versus Pharmacologically Influenced Labor and Birth.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Erickson, Elise N; Lee, Christopher S; Emeis, Cathy L

    2017-07-01

    Maternity care providers administer oxytocin prophylactically to prevent postpartum hemorrhage (PPH). Prophylactic oxytocin is generally considered effective and safe and is promoted by national organizations for standardized use. In this article, the evidence supporting prophylactic oxytocin administration for women undergoing spontaneous labor and birth compared with women whose labors included administration of exogenous oxytocin for induction or augmentation is explored. Using data from randomized controlled trials included in 2 recent Cochrane meta-analyses papers, only studies with women in spontaneous labor were selected for inclusion (N = 4 studies). Outcomes of immediate postpartum bleeding volumes (≥ 500 mL or 1000 mL), risk for blood transfusion, and risk for administration of more uterotonic medication were pooled from these 4 studies. Focused random effects meta-analytics were used. Compared to women without prophylactic oxytocin, women who received prophylactic oxytocin had a lower risk of having a 500 mL or higher blood loss. However, prophylactic oxytocin did not lower risk of PPH (≥ 1000 mL), blood transfusion, or need for additional uterotonic treatment. Prophylactic oxytocin may not confer the same benefits to women undergoing spontaneous labor and birth compared to women laboring with oxytocin infusion. Reasons for this difference are explored from a pharmacologic perspective. In addition, the value of prophylactic oxytocin given recent changes in the definition of PPH from greater than or equal to 500 mL to 1000 mL or more after birth is discussed. Finally, gaps in research on adverse effects of prophylactic oxytocin are presented. More research is needed on reducing risk of PPH for women in spontaneous labor. © 2017 by the American College of Nurse-Midwives.

  3. A direct examination of the effect of intranasal administration of oxytocin on approach-avoidance motor responses to emotional stimuli.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Angeliki Theodoridou

    Full Text Available Oxytocin has been shown to promote a host of social behaviors in humans but the exact mechanisms by which it exerts its effects are unspecified. One prominent theory suggests that oxytocin increases approach and decreases avoidance to social stimuli. Another dominant theory posits that oxytocin increases the salience of social stimuli. Herein, we report a direct test of these hypotheses. In a double-blind, placebo-controlled study we examined approach-avoidance motor responses to social and non-social emotional stimuli. One hundred and twenty participants self-administered either 24 IU oxytocin or placebo and moved a lever toward or away from pictures of faces depicting emotional expressions or from natural scenes appearing before them on a computer screen. Lever movements toward stimuli decreased and movements away increased stimuli size producing the illusion that stimuli moved away from or approached participants. Reaction time data were recorded. The task produced the effects that were anticipated on the basis of the approach-avoidance literature in relation to emotional stimuli, yet the anticipated speeded approach and slowed avoidance responses to emotional faces by the oxytocin group were not observed. Interestingly, the oxytocin treatment group was faster to approach and avoid faces depicting disgust relative to the placebo group, suggesting a salience of disgust for the former group. Results also showed that within the oxytocin group women's reaction times to all emotional faces were faster than those of men, suggesting sex specific effects of oxytocin. The present findings provide the first direct evidence that intranasal oxytocin administration does not enhance approach/avoidance to social stimuli and does not exert a stronger effect on social vs. non-social stimuli in the context of processing of emotional expressions and scenes. Instead, our data suggest that oxytocin administration increases the salience of certain social stimuli

  4. Prevention of postpartum haemorrhage with sublingual misoprostol or oxytocin: a double-blind randomised controlled trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bellad, M B; Tara, D; Ganachari, M S; Mallapur, M D; Goudar, S S; Kodkany, B S; Sloan, N L; Derman, R

    2012-07-01

    Sublingual misoprostol produces a rapid peak concentration, and is more effective than oral administration. We compared the postpartum measured blood loss with 400 μg powdered sublingual misoprostol and after standard care using 10 iu intramuscular (IM) oxytocin. Double-blind randomised controlled trial. A teaching hospital: J N Medical College, Belgaum, India. A cohort of 652 consenting eligible pregnant women admitted to the labour room. Subjects were assigned to receive the study medications and placebos within 1 minute of clamping and cutting the cord by computer-generated randomisation. Chi-square and bootstrapped Student's t-tests were used to test categorical and continuous outcomes, respectively. Measured mean postpartum blood loss and haemorrhage (PPH, loss ≥ 500 ml), >10% pre- to post-partum decline in haemoglobin, and reported side effects. The mean blood loss with sublingual misoprostol was 192 ± 124 ml (n=321) and 366 ± 136 ml with oxytocin IM (n=331, P ≤ 0.001). The incidence of PPH was 3.1% with misoprostol and 9.1% with oxytocin (P=0.002). No woman lost ≥ 1000 ml of blood. We observed that 9.7% and 45.6% of women experienced a haemoglobin decline of >10% after receiving misoprostol and oxytocin, respectively (P ≤ 0.001). Side effects were significantly greater in the misoprostol group than in the oxytocin group. Unlike other studies, this trial found sublingual misoprostol more effective than intramuscular oxytocin in reducing PPH, with only transient side effects being greater in the misoprostol group. The sublingual mode and/or powdered formulation may increase the effectiveness of misoprostol, and render it superior to injectable oxytocin for the prevention of PPH. Further research is needed to confirm these results. © 2012 The Authors BJOG An International Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology © 2012 RCOG.

  5. Oxytocin-Motivated Ally Selection is Moderated by Fetal Testosterone Exposure and Empathic Concern

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mariska Esther Kret

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available In humans, the hypothalamic neuropeptide oxytocin shifts the individual’s focus on self-interest towards group-serving cognitions and decision making. Here we examine this general tendency in the context of group formation, where individuals included into their group (or not 18 targets morphed as having low or high-threat potential (with high-threat targets being beneficial to group-interests but potentially hurting the recruiter’s self-interest. Ninety healthy males self-administered oxytocin or placebo in a randomized double-blind, placebo-controlled study design, had their hands scanned to derive fetal testosterone vs. estradiol exposure from their 2D:4D ratio, and self-reported on their chronic empathic concern. Multilevel regression models revealed that when given oxytocin rather than placebo, individuals with low fetal testosterone priming included low-threat targets more and high-threat targets (somewhat less. Individuals with high fetal testosterone (i.e., low estradiol exposure, however, included high-threat targets more, and low-threat targets less when given oxytocin rather than placebo. Second, when given oxytocin rather than placebo, individuals with low empathic concern included low-threat targets more and high-threat targets less. Individuals with high empathic concern, however, included high-threat targets more, and low-threat targets less when given oxytocin rather than placebo. We conclude that oxytocin shifts the individual’s focus from self to group-serving cognition and decision making, and that these tendencies are stronger for males with high rather than low fetal testosterone exposure, and high rather than low empathic concern. Implications and avenues for future research are discussed.

  6. Oxytocin administration selectively improves olfactory detection thresholds for lyral in patients with schizophrenia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Woolley, J D; Lam, O; Chuang, B; Ford, J M; Mathalon, D H; Vinogradov, S

    2015-03-01

    Olfaction plays an important role in mammalian social behavior. Olfactory deficits are common in schizophrenia and correlate with negative symptoms and low social drive. Despite their prominence and possible clinical relevance, little is understood about the pathological mechanisms underlying olfactory deficits in schizophrenia and there are currently no effective treatments for these deficits. The prosocial neuropeptide oxytocin may affect the olfactory system when administered intranasally to humans and there is growing interest in its therapeutic potential in schizophrenia. To examine this model, we administered 40IU of oxytocin and placebo intranasally to 31 patients with a schizophrenia spectrum illness and 34 age-matched healthy control participants in a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled, cross-over study. On each test day, participants completed an olfactory detection threshold test for two different odors: (1) lyral, a synthetic fragrance compound for which patients with schizophrenia have specific olfactory detection threshold deficits, possibly related to decreased cyclic adenosine 3',5'-monophosphate (cAMP) signaling; and (2) anise, a compound for which olfactory detection thresholds change with menstrual cycle phase in women. On the placebo test day, patients with schizophrenia did not significantly differ from healthy controls in detection of either odor. We found that oxytocin administration significantly and selectively improved olfactory detection thresholds for lyral but not for anise in patients with schizophrenia. In contrast, oxytocin had no effect on detection of either odor in healthy controls. Our data indicate that oxytocin administration may ameliorate olfactory deficits in schizophrenia and suggest the effects of intranasal oxytocin may extend to influencing the olfactory system. Given that oxytocin has been found to increase cAMP signaling in vitro a possible mechanism for these effects is discussed. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  7. Oxytocin promotes intuitive rather than deliberated cooperation with the in-group.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ten Velden, Femke S; Daughters, Katie; De Dreu, Carsten K W

    2017-06-01

    A contribution to a special issue on Hormones and Human Competition. In intergroup settings, individuals prefer cooperating with their in-group, and sometimes derogate and punish out-groups. Here we replicate earlier work showing that such in-group bounded cooperation is conditioned by oxytocin and extend it by showing that oxytocin-motivated in-group cooperation is intuitive rather than deliberated. Healthy males (N=65) and females (N=129) self-administered intranasal placebo or 24IU oxytocin in a double-blind placebo-controlled between-subjects design, were assigned to a three-person in-group (that faced a 3-person out-group), and given an endowment from which they could contribute to a within-group pool (benefitting the in-group), and/or to a between-group pool (benefitting the in-group and punishing the out-group). Prior to decision-making, participants performed a Stroop Interference task that was either cognitively taxing, or not. Cognitively taxed individuals kept less to themselves and contributed more to the within-group pool. Furthermore, participants receiving placebo contributed more to the within-group pool when they were cognitively taxed rather than not; those receiving oxytocin contributed to the within-group pool regardless of cognitive taxation. Neither taxation nor treatment influenced contributions to the between-group pool, and no significant sex differences were observed. It follows that in intergroup settings (i) oxytocin increases in-group bounded cooperation, (ii) oxytocin neither reduces nor increases out-group directed spite, and (iii) oxytocin-induced in-group cooperation is independent of cognitive taxation and, therefore, likely to be intuitive rather than consciously deliberated. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  8. Unsupportive social interactions and affective states: examining associations of two oxytocin-related polymorphisms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McInnis, Opal A; McQuaid, Robyn J; Matheson, Kimberly; Anisman, Hymie

    2017-01-01

    Two single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) on oxytocin-related genes, specifically the oxytocin receptor (OXTR) rs53576 and the CD38 rs3796863 variants, have been associated with alterations in prosocial behaviors. A cross-sectional study was conducted among undergraduate students (N = 476) to examine associations between the OXTR and CD38 polymorphisms and unsupportive social interactions and mood states. Results revealed no association between perceived levels of unsupportive social interactions and the OXTR polymorphism. However, A carriers of the CD38 polymorphism, a variant previously associated with elevated oxytocin, reported greater perceived peer unsupportive interactions compared to CC carriers. As expected, perceived unsupportive interactions from peers was associated with greater negative affect, which was moderated by the CD38 polymorphism. Specifically, this relation was stronger among CC carriers of the CD38 polymorphism (a variant thought to be linked to lower oxytocin). When examining whether the OXTR polymorphism moderated the relation between unsupportive social interactions from peers and negative affect there was a trend toward significance, however, this did not withstand multiple testing corrections. These findings are consistent with the perspective that a variant on an oxytocin polymorphism that may be tied to lower oxytocin is related to poor mood outcomes in association with negative social interactions. At the same time, having a genetic constitution presumed to be associated with higher oxytocin was related to increased perceptions of unsupportive social interactions. These seemingly paradoxical findings could be related to previous reports in which variants associated with prosocial behaviors were also tied to relatively more effective coping styles to deal with challenges.

  9. Effects of Intranasal Oxytocin on the Interpretation and Expression of Emotions in Anorexia Nervosa.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leppanen, J; Cardi, V; Ng, K W; Paloyelis, Y; Stein, D; Tchanturia, K; Treasure, J

    2017-03-01

    Altered social-emotional functioning is considered to play an important role in the development and maintenance of anorexia nervosa (AN). Recently, there has been increasing interest in investigating the role of intranasal oxytocin in social-emotional processing. The present study aimed to investigate the effects of intranasal oxytocin on the interpretation and expression of emotions among people with AN. Thirty women with AN and 29 age-matched healthy women took part in the present study, which used a double-blind, placebo-controlled, cross-over design. The participants received a single dose of 40 IU of intranasal oxytocin in one session and a placebo spray in the other. Fifteen minutes after administration, the participants completed the Reading the Mind in the Eyes Test to assess the interpretation of complex emotions and mental states followed by a video task, which assessed expressions of facial affect when they were viewing humorous and sad film clips. The intranasal oxytocin did not significantly influence the expression or interpretation of emotions in the AN or healthy comparison groups. The AN group expressed significantly less positive emotion, spent more time looking away and reported experiencing a significantly more negative affect in response to the film clips. The finding that intranasal oxytocin had little to no effect on the interpretation or expression of emotions in either group supports the notion that the effects of oxytocin on social-emotional processing are not straightforward and may depend on individual and environmental differences, as well as the emotion being processed. Replication of these findings is necessary to explore the effect of timing on the effects of oxytocin before firm conclusions can be drawn. Nonetheless, these findings add to the steady accumulation of evidence that people with AN have reduced emotional expression and avoidance of emotionally provoking stimuli. © 2017 The Authors. Journal of Neuroendocrinology

  10. Administration of an oxytocin receptor antagonist attenuates sexual motivation in male rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blitzer, D S; Wells, T E; Hawley, W R

    2017-08-01

    In male rats, oxytocin impacts both sexual arousal and certain types of consummatory sexual behaviors. However, the role of oxytocin in the motivational aspects of sexual behavior has received limited attention. Given the role that oxytocin signaling plays in consummatory sexual behaviors, it was hypothesized that pharmacological attenuation of oxytocin signaling would reduce sexual motivation in male rats. Sexually experienced Long-Evans male rats were administered either an oxytocin receptor antagonist (L368,899 hydrochloride; 1mg/kg) or vehicle control into the intraperitoneal cavity 40min prior to placement into the center chamber of a three-chambered arena designed to assess sexual motivation. During the 20-minute test, a sexually experienced stimulus male rat and a sexually receptive stimulus female rat were separately confined to smaller chambers that were attached to the larger end chambers of the arena. However, physical contact between test and stimulus rats was prevented by perforated dividers. Immediately following the sexual motivation test, test male rats were placed with a sexually receptive female to examine consummatory sexual behaviors. Although both drug and vehicle treated rats exhibited a preference for the female, treatment with an oxytocin receptor antagonist decreased the amount of time spent with the female. There were no differences between drug and vehicle treated rats in either general activity, exploratory behaviors, the amount of time spent near the stimulus male rat, or consummatory sexual behaviors. Extending previous findings, these results indicate that oxytocin receptors are involved in sexual motivation in male rats. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  11. Intranasal oxytocin reduces social perception in women: Neural activation and individual variation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hecht, Erin E; Robins, Diana L; Gautam, Pritam; King, Tricia Z

    2017-02-15

    Most intranasal oxytocin research to date has been carried out in men, but recent studies indicate that females' responses can differ substantially from males'. This randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study involved an all-female sample of 28 women not using hormonal contraception. Participants viewed animations of geometric shapes depicting either random movement or social interactions such as playing, chasing, or fighting. Probe questions asked whether any shapes were "friends" or "not friends." Social videos were preceded by cues to attend to either social relationships or physical size changes. All subjects received intranasal placebo spray at scan 1. While the experimenter was not blinded to nasal spray contents at Scan 1, the participants were. Scan 2 followed a randomized, double-blind design. At scan 2, half received a second placebo dose while the other half received 24 IU of intranasal oxytocin. We measured neural responses to these animations at baseline, as well as the change in neural activity induced by oxytocin. Oxytocin reduced activation in early visual cortex and dorsal-stream motion processing regions for the social > size contrast, indicating reduced activity related to social attention. Oxytocin also reduced endorsements that shapes were "friends" or "not friends," and this significantly correlated with reduction in neural activation. Furthermore, participants who perceived fewer social relationships at baseline were more likely to show oxytocin-induced increases in a broad network of regions involved in social perception and social cognition, suggesting that lower social processing at baseline may predict more positive neural responses to oxytocin. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  12. The organizational effects of oxytocin on the central expression of estrogen receptor α and oxytocin in adulthood

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Papademetriou Eros

    2007-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Previous studies have demonstrated that neonatal manipulation of oxytocin (OT has effects on the expression of estrogen receptor α (ERα and the central production of oxytocin observed in juveniles (at weaning, 21 days of age. The goal of this study was to determine whether the effects of neonatal manipulation of OT last into adulthood, and if the effects differ from those observed during the early postnatal period. On the first day of life, prairie voles (Microtus ochrogaster received one of three doses of OT (High, 3 μg; Med, 0.3 μg; Low, 0.03 μg, an OT antagonist, or isotonic saline. Another group was handled, but not injected. Then as adults, brains were collected, sectioned, and stained for ERα or OT using immunocytochemistry. Results In females, treatment with OT increased the expression of ERα immunoreactivity in the ventral lateral septum (0.03 μg and the ventromedial nucleus of the hypothalamus and central amygdala (0.3 μg. In males, OT antagonist increased ERα expression in the bed nucleus of the stria terminalis. There was no apparent effect of OT on the number of cells producing OT in the paraventricular nucleus of the hypothalamus. Conclusion The current results suggest that neonatal manipulation of OT has long-term organizational effects on the expression of ERα in both males and females. The lack of effect on OT neurons in the paraventricular nucleus suggests that some developmental effects of OT previously observed in weanlings do not persist into adulthood. Developmental effects of OT on ERα patterns were sexually dimorphic, dose-dependent, and site-specific.

  13. Cloning and expression of pineapple sucrosephosphate synthase ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    A 1132-base pairs (bp) polymerase-chain-reaction product of sucrose-phosphate synthase (SPS) (EC 2.3.1.14) from pineapple (Ananas comosus cv. Comte de paris) fruit was cloned and nominated as Ac- SPS1. The sequence encodes a putative 377 amino acids protein containing two serine conserved features that had ...

  14. Endothelial nitric oxide synthase gene polymorphisms associated ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Endothelial nitric oxide synthase (NOS3) is involved in key steps of immune response. Genetic factors predispose individuals to periodontal disease. This study's aim was to explore the association between NOS3 gene polymorphisms and clinical parameters in patients with periodontal disease. Genomic DNA was obtained ...

  15. HAEM SYNTHASE AND COBALT PORPHYRIN SYNTHASE IN VARIOUS MICRO-ORGANISMS.

    Science.gov (United States)

    PORRA, R J; ROSS, B D

    1965-03-01

    1. The preparation of a crude extract of Clostridium tetanomorphum containing cobalt porphyrin synthase but little haem-synthase activity is described. 2. The properties of cobalt porphyrin synthase in the clostridial extracts is compared with the properties of a haem synthase present in crude extracts of the yeast Torulopsis utilis. 3. Cobalt porphyrin synthase in extracts of C. tetanomorphum inserts Co(2+) ions into the following dicarboxylic porphyrins in descending order of rate of insertion: meso-, deutero- and proto-porphyrins. Esterification renders meso- and deutero-porphyrins inactive as substrates. Neither the tetracarboxylic (coproporphyrin III) nor the octacarboxylic (uroporphyrin III) compounds are converted into cobalt porphyrins by the extract, but the non-enzymic incorporation of Co(2+) ions into these two porphyrins is rapid. These extracts are unable to insert Mn(2+), Zn(2+), Mg(2+) or Cu(2+) ions into mesoporphyrin. 4. Crude extracts of T. utilis readily insert both Co(2+) and Fe(2+) ions into deutero-, meso, and proto-porphyrins. Unlike the extracts of C. tetanomorphum, these preparations catalyse the insertion of Co(2+) ions into deuteroporphyrin more rapidly than into mesoporphyrin. This parallels the formation of haems by the T. utilis extract. 5. Cobalt porphyrin synthase is present in the particulate fraction of the extracts of C. tetanomorphum but requires a heat-stable factor present in the soluble fraction. This soluble factor can be replaced by GSH. 6. Cobalt porphyrin synthase in the clostridial extract is inhibited by iodoacetamide and to a smaller extent by p-chloromercuribenzoate and N-ethylmaleimide. The haem synthases of T. utilis and Micrococcus denitrificans are also inhibited by various thiol reagents.

  16. The moderating role of an oxytocin receptor gene polymorphism in the relation between unsupportive social interactions and coping profiles: Implications for depression

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Opal Arilla Mcinnis

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available Oxytocin is a hormone that is thought to influence prosocial behaviors and may be important in modulating responses to both positive and negative social interactions. Indeed, a single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP of the oxytocin receptor gene (OXTR has been associated with decreased trust, empathy, optimism and social support seeking, which are important components of coping with stressors. In the current study, conducted among undergraduate students (N=225, it was shown that parental and peer social support was related to fewer depressive symptoms through elevated problem-focused coping and lower emotion-focused coping, and these effects were independent of the OXTR polymorphism. Unsupportive social interactions from parents were associated with more severe depressive symptoms through the greater use of emotion-focused coping, and this relation was moderated by the OXTR genotype. Specifically, individuals who carried the polymorphism on one or both of their alleles demonstrated increased emotion-focused coping following unsupportive responses compared to those without the polymorphism. Likewise, lower problem-focused coping mediated the relation between parental and peer unsupportive responses to depressive symptoms, but this mediated relation was only evident among carriers of the polymorphism. These findings suggest that carrying this OXTR polymorphism might favor disadvantageous coping styles in the face of negative social interactions, which in turn are linked to poor mood. Regardless of genotype, parental and peer social support are fundamental in determining stress-related coping and well-being.

  17. Do blood plasma levels of oxytocin moderate the effect of nasally administered oxytocin on social orienting in high-functioning male adults with autism spectrum disorder?

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Althaus, Monika; Groen, Yvonne; Wijers, Albertus A.; Noltes, Henriette; Tucha, Oliver; Sweep, Fred C.; Calcagnoli, Federica; Hoekstra, Pieter J.

    The study investigated whether baseline plasma oxytocin (OXT) concentrations might moderate the effects of nasally administered OXT on social orienting. Thirty-one males with Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and thirty healthy males participated in a double-blind placebo-controlled crossover trial.

  18. The impact of oxytocin administration on charitable donating is moderated by experiences of parental love-withdrawal

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    M.H. van IJzendoorn (Rien); R. Huffmeijer (Renske); L.R.A. Alink (Lenneke R.A.); M.J. Bakermans-Kranenburg (Marian); M. Tops (Mattie)

    2011-01-01

    textabstractOxytocin has been implicated in a variety of prosocial processes but most of this work has used laboratory tasks (such as the ultimatum game or the dictator game) to evaluate oxytocin's prosocial effects. In a double blind randomized trial we examined the influence of intranasal

  19. The Multidimensional Therapeutic Potential of Targeting the Brain Oxytocin System for the Treatment of Substance Use Disorders.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bowen, Michael T; Neumann, Inga D

    2017-09-24

    The neuropeptide oxytocin is released both into the blood and within the brain in response to reproductive stimuli, such as birth, suckling and sex, but also in response to social interaction and stressors. Substance use disorders, or addictions, are chronic, relapsing brain disorders and are one of the major causes of global burden of disease. Unfortunately, current treatment options for substance use disorders are extremely limited and a treatment breakthrough is sorely needed. There is mounting preclinical evidence that targeting the brain oxytocin system may provide that breakthrough. Substance use disorders are characterised by a viscous cycle of bingeing and intoxication, followed by withdrawal and negative affect, and finally preoccupation and anticipation that triggers relapse and further consumption. Administration of oxytocin has been shown to have a potential therapeutic benefit at each stage of this addiction cycle for numerous drugs of abuse. This multidimensional therapeutic utility is likely due to oxytocin's interactions with key biological systems that underlie the development and maintenance of addiction. Only a few human trials of oxytocin in addicted populations have been completed with the results thus far being mixed. There are numerous other trials underway, and the results are eagerly awaited. However, the ability to fully harness the potential therapeutic benefit of targeting the brain oxytocin system may depend on the development of molecules that selectively stimulate the oxytocin system, but that have superior pharmacokinetic properties to oxytocin itself.

  20. Oxytocin enhances the appropriate use of human social cues by the domestic dog (Canis familiaris) in an object choice task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oliva, J L; Rault, J-L; Appleton, B; Lill, A

    2015-05-01

    It has been postulated that the neuropeptide, oxytocin, is involved in human-dog bonding. This may explain why dogs, compared to wolves, are such good performers on object choice tasks, which test their ability to attend to, and use, human social cues in order to find hidden food treats. The objective of this study was to investigate the effect of intranasal oxytocin administration, which is known to increase social cognition in humans, on domestic dogs' ability to perform such a task. We hypothesised that dogs would perform better on the task after an intranasal treatment of oxytocin. Sixty-two (31 males and 31 females) pet dogs completed the experiment over two different testing sessions, 5-15 days apart. Intranasal oxytocin or a saline control was administered 45 min before each session. All dogs received both treatments in a pseudo-randomised, counterbalanced order. Data were collected as scores out of ten for each of the four blocks of trials in each session. Two blocks of trials were conducted using a momentary distal pointing cue and two using a gazing cue, given by the experimenter. Oxytocin enhanced performance using momentary distal pointing cues, and this enhanced level of performance was maintained over 5-15 days time in the absence of oxytocin. Oxytocin also decreased aversion to gazing cues, in that performance was below chance levels after saline administration but at chance levels after oxytocin administration.

  1. Intranasal oxytocin enhances neural processing of monetary reward and loss in post-traumatic stress disorder and traumatized controls.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nawijn, Laura; van Zuiden, Mirjam; Koch, Saskia B J; Frijling, Jessie L; Veltman, Dick J; Olff, Miranda

    2016-04-01

    Anhedonia is a significant clinical problem in post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). PTSD patients show reduced motivational approach behavior, which may underlie anhedonic symptoms. Oxytocin administration is known to increase reward sensitivity and approach behavior. We therefore investigated whether oxytocin administration affected neural responses during motivational processing in PTSD patients and trauma-exposed controls. 35 police officers with PTSD (21 males) and 37 trauma-exposed police officers without PTSD (19 males) were included in a within-subjects, randomized, placebo-controlled fMRI study. Neural responses during anticipation of monetary reward and loss were investigated with a monetary incentive delay task (MID) after placebo and oxytocin (40 IU) administration. Oxytocin increased neural responses during reward and loss anticipation in PTSD patients and controls in the striatum, dorsal anterior cingulate cortex and insula, key regions in the reward pathway. Although PTSD patients did not differ from controls in motivational processing under placebo, anhedonia severity in PTSD patients was negatively related to reward responsiveness in the ventral striatum. Furthermore, oxytocin effects on reward processing in the ventral striatum were positively associated with anhedonia. Oxytocin administration increased reward pathway sensitivity during reward and loss anticipation in PTSD patients and trauma-exposed controls. Thus, oxytocin administration may increase motivation for goal-directed approach behavior in PTSD patients and controls, providing evidence for a neurobiological pathway through which oxytocin could potentially increase motivation and reward sensitivity in PTSD patients. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  2. Oxytocin effects on mind-reading are moderated by experiences of maternal love withdrawal: an fMRI study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Riem, Madelon M E; Bakermans-Kranenburg, Marian J; Voorthuis, Alexandra; van IJzendoorn, Marinus H

    2014-06-03

    The neuropeptide oxytocin has been shown to stimulate a range of social behaviors. However, recent studies indicate that the effects of intranasal oxytocin are more nuanced than previously thought and that contextual factors and individual characteristics moderate the beneficiary oxytocin effects. In this randomized-controlled trial we examine the influence of intranasally administered oxytocin on neural activity during mind-reading with fMRI, taking into account harsh caregiving experiences as a potential moderator. Participants were 50 women who received a nasal spray containing either 16 IU of oxytocin or a placebo and had reported how often their mother used love withdrawal as a disciplinary strategy. Participants performed an adapted version of the Reading the Mind in the Eyes Test (RMET), a task which requires individuals to infer mental states by looking at photographs of the eye region of faces. We found that oxytocin enhanced neural activation in the superior temporal gyrus (STG) and insula during the RMET. Moreover, oxytocin increased RMET performance outside the scanner. However, the oxytocin induced changes in STG activation and RMET performance were only brought about in potentially less socially proficient individuals who had low RMET performance, that is, participants reporting higher levels of maternal love withdrawal. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  3. Intramuscular oxytocin versus intravenous oxytocin to prevent postpartum haemorrhage at vaginal delivery (LabOR trial): study protocol for a randomised controlled trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adnan, Nita; Boland, Fiona; Murphy, Deirdre J

    2017-11-15

    Primary postpartum haemorrhage (PPH) is one of the leading causes of maternal morbidity and mortality worldwide. The most common cause of primary PPH is uterine atony. Atonic PPH rates are increasing in developed countries despite routine active management of the third stage of labour. In less-developed countries, primary PPH remains the leading cause of maternal death. Although the value of routine oxytocics in the third stage of labour has been well established, there is inconsistent practice in the choice of agent and route of administration. Oxytocin is the preferred agent because it has fewer side effects than other uterotonics with similar efficacy. It can be given intravenously or intramuscularly; however, to date, the most effective route of administering oxytocin has not been established. A double-blind randomised controlled trial is planned. The aim of the study is to compare the effects of an intramuscular bolus of oxytocin (10 IU in 1 mL) and placebo intravenous injection (1 mL 0.9% saline given slowly) with an intravenous bolus of oxytocin (10 IU in 1 mL given slowly over 1 min) and placebo intramuscular injection (1 mL 0.9% saline) at vaginal delivery. The study will recruit 1000 women at term (>36 weeks) with singleton pregnancies who are aiming for a vaginal delivery. The primary outcome will be PPH (measured blood loss ≥ 500 mL). A study involving 1000 women will have 80% power at the 5% two-sided alpha level, to detect differences in the proportion of patients with measured blood loss > 500 ml of 10% vs 5%. Given the increasing trends of atonic PPH it is both important and timely that we evaluate the most effective route of oxytocin administration for the management of the third stage of labour. To date, there has been limited research comparing the efficacy of intramuscular oxytocin vs intravenous oxytocin for the third stage of labour. ISRCTN Registry, ISRCTN14718882 . Registered on 4 January 2016. Pilot commenced 12

  4. The acute effects of intranasal oxytocin administration on endocrine and sexual function in males.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Burri, Andrea; Heinrichs, Markus; Schedlowski, Manfred; Kruger, Tillmann H C

    2008-06-01

    The role of the neuropeptide oxytocin (OT) ranges from the modulation of neuroendocrine physiological effects to the establishment of complex social and bonding behaviours. Experimental studies in animals, as well as case reports in humans, suggest that OT affects different aspects of sexual behaviour and has predominantly facilitating properties for sexual appetence and performance. Using a previously established experimental paradigm of sexual arousal and masturbation-induced orgasm, this study investigated the acute effects of intranasal OT application (24I.U.) on endocrine parameters and measures of sexual appetence and function in healthy men (n=10). In a double-blind, placebo-controlled, balanced cross-over design, sexual arousal, and orgasm were induced by an erotic film and masturbation. In addition to the continuous recording of endocrine (OT, cortisol, prolactin, epinephrine, norepinephrine) and cardiovascular data (heart rate), parameters of appetitive, consummatory, and refractory sexual behaviour were assessed using the acute sexual experience scale (ASES). OT plasma levels were significantly elevated after intranasal OT throughout the whole experiment (>60 min). In addition, OT treatment induced significantly higher increases in epinephrine plasma levels during sexual activity without affecting cortisol levels, prolactin levels or heart rate. OT treatment did not alter appetitive, consummatory, and refractory sexual behaviour according to the ASES. However, when subjects were asked about their subjective perception of whether OT or placebo had been applied, eight out of 10 subjects in the OT group answered correctly, thus pointing to an altered perception of arousal. In conclusion, intranasally administered OT leads to a marked increase in OT plasma levels together with increased secretion of catecholamines when subjects are engaged in sexual activity in a laboratory setting. As the effects of OT on sexual behaviour were equivocal, future studies

  5. The roles of oxytocin and CD38 in social or parental behaviors

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Olga eLopatina

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available The nine amino acid peptide oxytocin (OXT has been directly associated with different types of behavioral reactions. The formation and maintenance of social relationships in youth and middle age are important components of human mental health. A deficit in healthy behavioral formation leads to social isolation and limitation of well-being. Mice are social animals and are therefore useful for investigating the neurobiological mechanisms of cognitive process control, including the development of social relationships and social skills. Studies in mice may broaden our understanding of the human condition. The multifunctional protein CD38/ADP-ribosyl cyclase is highly expressed in the brain, plays an important role in central OXT release and regulates social memory. In this review article, we discuss the mechanisms of social behavior affected by the dysregulation of brain OXT function as a consequence of a lack of CD38. OXT bound to OXT receptors initiates autoregulatory positive feedback of OXT release in the hypothalamus and posterior pituitary. OXT bio-behavioral positive feedback is usually implicated in female reproductive systems, but can also be observed in social behavior. Exogenous stimuli (OXT treatment in vitro, OXT intravenous or intraventricular administration, and nasal OXT delivery initiate activation of OXT neurons via PKC-CD38/ADP-ribosyl cyclase cascades and result in the modulation of social behavior in humans and mice. Based on these findings, we reviewed the functions of OXT and its properties with respect to the development of therapies for human social behavior impairments in psychological diseases. In addition, preliminary studies of continuous nasal OXT administration on subjects with autism spectrum disorders are described.

  6. Sex differences in neural activation following different routes of oxytocin administration in awake adult rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dumais, Kelly M; Kulkarni, Praveen P; Ferris, Craig F; Veenema, Alexa H

    2017-07-01

    The neuropeptide oxytocin (OT) regulates social behavior in sex-specific ways across species. OT has promising effects on alleviating social deficits in sex-biased neuropsychiatric disorders. However little is known about potential sexually dimorphic effects of OT on brain function. Using the rat as a model organism, we determined whether OT administered centrally or peripherally induces sex differences in brain activation. Functional magnetic resonance imaging was used to examine blood oxygen level-dependent (BOLD) signal intensity changes in the brains of awake rats during the 20min following intracerebroventricular (ICV; 1μg/5μl) or intraperitoneal (IP; 0.1mg/kg) OT administration as compared to baseline. ICV OT induced sex differences in BOLD activation in 26 out of 172 brain regions analyzed, with 20 regions showing a greater volume of activation in males (most notably the nucleus accumbens and insular cortex), and 6 regions showing a greater volume of activation in females (including the lateral and central amygdala). IP OT also elicited sex differences in BOLD activation with a greater volume of activation in males, but this activation was found in different and fewer (10) brain regions compared to ICV OT. In conclusion, exogenous OT modulates neural activation differently in male versus female rats with the pattern and magnitude, but not the direction, of sex differences depending on the route of administration. These findings highlight the need to include both sexes in basic and clinical studies to fully understand the role of OT on brain function. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  7. Systematic prophylactic oxytocin injection and the incidence of postpartum hemorrhage: A before-and-after study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garabedian, C; Simon, M; Closset, E; Ducloy-Bouthors, A-S; Schaffar, A; Deruelle, P; Gautier, S; Depret, S; Subtil, D

    2016-02-01

    Assess the impact of routine injection of 5 units of oxytocin as soon as the anterior shoulder is delivered on the incidence of postpartum haemorrhage (PPH) in a context of daily practice. Single-centre before-and-after study evaluating the effect of a change in the protocol for PPH prevention as applied in our obstetrical unit. During the first period, oxytocin (5 units) was to be injected only in case of PPH risk factors. During the second period, the injection was systematic. In the "before" study period, there were 1953 patients vaginal deliveries and 843 (43%) oxytocin injections, with a protocol compliance of 85%. In the "after" study period, 2018 women had vaginal deliveries and 1911 (95%) had an oxytocin injection (protocol compliance: 95%). The whole study period was associated with a reduced risk of moderate haemorrhage (13.4% vs. 9.2%, Phaemorrhage was observed (2.1% vs. 2.0%, P=0.79). After logistic regression, the study period remained associated with a significant reduction in the risk of moderate PPH (OR=0.72 [0.58-0.89]). Routine injection of 5 units of oxytocin makes it possible to reduce the risk of moderate PPH, but it does not affect the risk of severe PPH. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Masson SAS. All rights reserved.

  8. Interactions between dopamine and oxytocin in the control of sexual behaviour.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baskerville, Tracey A; Douglas, Alison J

    2008-01-01

    Dopamine and oxytocin are two key neuromodulators involved in reproductive behaviours, such as mating and maternal care. Much evidence underlies their separate roles in such behaviours, but particularly in sexual behaviour. It is generally believed that central dopaminergic and oxytocinergic systems work together to regulate the expression of penile erection, but relatively little is known regarding how they interact. Thus, this review aims to discuss neuroanatomical proof, neuromodulator secretory profiles in the hypothalamus and behavioural pharmacological evidence which support a dopamine-oxytocin link in three hypothalamic nuclei that have been implicated in sexual behaviour, namely the medial preoptic nucleus, supraoptic nucleus and paraventricular nucleus (PVN). We also aim to provide an overview of potential dopamine-mediated transduction pathways that occur within these nuclei and are correlated with the exhibition of penile erection. The PVN provides the most convincing evidence for a dopamine-oxytocin link and it is becoming increasingly apparent that parvocellular oxytocinergic neurons in the PVN, in part, mediate the effects of dopamine to elicit penile erection. However, while we show that oxytocin neurons express dopamine receptors, other evidence on whether dopaminergic activation of PVN oxytocin cells involves a direct and/or indirect mechanism is inconclusive and further evidence is required to establish whether the two systems interact synergistically or sequentially in the regulation of penile erection.

  9. Something to talk about: Gossip increases oxytocin levels in a near real-life situation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brondino, Natascia; Fusar-Poli, Laura; Politi, Pierluigi

    2017-03-01

    Gossip is a pervasive social behavior. Its evolutionary survival seems related to its social functions, such as establishing group rules, punishing trespassers, exercising social influence through reputational systems, and developing and strengthening social bonds. We aimed at evaluating the effect of gossip on hormones (oxytocin and cortisol) and at identifying potential mediators of hormonal response to gossip. Twenty-two female students were randomly assigned to a gossip conversation or to an emotional non-gossip conversation. Additionally, all participants underwent a neutral conversation on the second day of the study. Salivary oxytocin and cortisol levels were measured. Oxytocin increased significantly in the gossip compared to the emotional non-gossip conversation. A decrease in cortisol levels was observed in all three conditions (gossip, emotional non-gossip, neutral). Change in cortisol levels was similar across conditions. Psychological characteristics (e.g. empathy, autistic traits, perceived stress, envy) did not affect oxytocin rise in the gossip condition. Our findings suggest that oxytocin may represent a potential hormonal correlate of gossip behavior. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  10. Meta-analysis of the effects of intranasal oxytocin on interpretation and expression of emotions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leppanen, Jenni; Ng, Kah Wee; Tchanturia, Kate; Treasure, Janet

    2017-07-01

    Accurate interpretation and appropriate expression of emotions are key aspects of social-cognition. Several mental disorders are characterised by transdiagnostic difficulties in these areas and, recently, there has been increasing interest in exploring the effects of oxytocin on social-emotional functioning. This review consists of 33 studies. Fifteen of the studies included people with autism spectrum disorder, schizophrenia, borderline personality disorder, frontotemporal dementia, anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa, post-traumatic stress disorder, depression, and opioid and alcohol dependence. We conducted ten meta-analyses examining the effects of intranasal oxytocin on expression of emotions, emotional theory of mind, sensitivity to recognise basic emotions, and recognition of basic emotions. A single dose of intranasal oxytocin significantly improved the recognition of basic emotions, particularly fear, and increased the expression of positive emotions among the healthy individuals. Oxytocin did not significantly influence theory of mind or the expression of negative emotions among the healthy individuals. Finally, intranasal oxytocin did not significantly influence interpretation or expression of emotions among the clinical populations. Copyright © 2017. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  11. Clinical and neural effects of six-week administration of oxytocin on core symptoms of autism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Watanabe, Takamitsu; Kuroda, Miho; Kuwabara, Hitoshi; Aoki, Yuta; Iwashiro, Norichika; Tatsunobu, Natsubori; Takao, Hidemasa; Nippashi, Yasumasa; Kawakubo, Yuki; Kunimatsu, Akira; Kasai, Kiyoto; Yamasue, Hidenori

    2015-11-01

    Autism spectrum disorder is a prevalent neurodevelopmental disorder with no established pharmacological treatment for its core symptoms. Although previous literature has shown that single-dose administration of oxytocin temporally mitigates autistic social behaviours in experimental settings, it remains in dispute whether such potentially beneficial responses in laboratories can result in clinically positive effects in daily life situations, which are measurable only in long-term observations of individuals with the developmental disorder undergoing continual oxytocin administration. Here, to address this issue, we performed an exploratory, randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled, crossover trial including 20 high-functional adult males with autism spectrum disorder. Data obtained from 18 participants who completed the trial showed that 6-week intranasal administration of oxytocin significantly reduced autism core symptoms specific to social reciprocity, which was clinically evaluated by Autism Diagnostic Observation Scale (P = 0.034, PFDR intervention were not larger than those seen in our previous single-dose intervention. These findings not only provide the evidence for clinically beneficial effects of continual oxytocin administration on the core social symptoms of autism spectrum disorder with suggesting its underlying biological mechanisms, but also highlight the necessity to seek optimal regimens of continual oxytocin treatment in future studies. © The Author (2015). Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Guarantors of Brain. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  12. Food sharing is linked to urinary oxytocin levels and bonding in related and unrelated wild chimpanzees

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wittig, Roman M.; Crockford, Catherine; Deschner, Tobias; Langergraber, Kevin E.; Ziegler, Toni E.; Zuberbühler, Klaus

    2014-01-01

    Humans excel in cooperative exchanges between unrelated individuals. Although this trait is fundamental to the success of our species, its evolution and mechanisms are poorly understood. Other social mammals also build long-term cooperative relationships between non-kin, and recent evidence shows that oxytocin, a hormone involved in parent–offspring bonding, is likely to facilitate non-kin as well as kin bonds. In a population of wild chimpanzees, we measured urinary oxytocin levels following a rare cooperative event—food sharing. Subjects showed higher urinary oxytocin levels after single food-sharing events compared with other types of social feeding, irrespective of previous social bond levels. Also, urinary oxytocin levels following food sharing were higher than following grooming, another cooperative behaviour. Therefore, food sharing in chimpanzees may play a key role in social bonding under the influence of oxytocin. We propose that food-sharing events co-opt neurobiological mechanisms evolved to support mother–infant bonding during lactation bouts, and may act as facilitators of bonding and cooperation between unrelated individuals via the oxytocinergic system across social mammals. PMID:24430853

  13. Exposure to synthetic oxytocin during delivery and its effect on psychomotor development.

    Science.gov (United States)

    González-Valenzuela, María-José; López-Montiel, Dolores; González-Mesa, Ernesto Santiago

    2015-12-01

    The main objective is to examine the influence of oxytocin administration during delivery on psychomotor development at age five years. This was a retrospective cohort study involving two groups: children of mothers exposed vs. not exposed to oxytocin during labor. Of the 7,465 newborns registered in our maternity service during 2006 we randomly selected an initial sample of 400 children. Of these, 146 children were assessed using the motor scale of the Battelle Developmental Inventory. Other predictor variables that could potentially act as confounders and/or interact with the main relationship were also examined. The data were subjected to bivariate analysis, estimates of measures of strength of association, stratified analysis and multivariate binary logistic regression. The results indicate that exposure to synthetic oxytocin during delivery is an independent risk factor for a delay in gross and fine motor development. This was the case after controlling for the variables duration of labor and sex of the newborn, none of which modified the effect of oxytocin on gross and fine motor development. However, sex of the newborn were shown to be confounding gross motor development. In light of these results, and with the aim of preventing possible psychomotor alterations, further studies are now needed to analyze the effect that the oxytocin dose and the duration of perfusion may have on children's subsequent development. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  14. The role of trauma in the hormonal interplay of cortisol, testosterone, and oxytocin in adolescent aggression.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fragkaki, Iro; Cima, Maaike; Granic, Isabela

    2018-02-01

    Although numerous studies have examined the neuroendocrinology of aggression, the findings are mixed and focused on cortisol and testosterone. We argue that past findings remain inconclusive partly because the key roles of oxytocin and trauma have not been systematically integrated yet. Oxytocin is associated with social behavior and interacts with cortisol and testosterone, whereas trauma is a crucial risk factor of aggression that strongly affects hormonal activity. In this review, we investigate the role of trauma in the hormonal interplay of cortisol, testosterone, and oxytocin in aggression during adolescence. We first discuss how these hormones interact with each other and how trauma influences these interactions and then we propose a model that highlights the role of trauma in the hormonal interplay in aggression. We suggest that the timing of trauma has a distinct effect on hormonal activity and it should be integrated into any comprehensive model. Current trauma is linked to different levels of oxytocin, cortisol, testosterone, and testosterone/cortisol ratio than childhood trauma, but this distinction is also influenced by gender and type of aggression. We conclude that in order to better understand the neuroendocrinology of aggression, it is crucial to incorporate the investigation of oxytocin and trauma in future research. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  15. Chronic fluoxetine inhibits sexual behavior in the male rat: reversal with oxytocin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cantor, J M; Binik, Y M; Pfaus, J G

    1999-06-01

    Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors, used widely in the treatment of depression, progressively inhibit sexual orgasm in many patients and induce a transient inhibition of sexual desire. We attempted to model the effects of these drugs in sexually experienced male rats during tests of copulation in bilevel chambers. These chambers allow the study of both appetitive and consummatory sexual responses of male rats. Males were treated daily with fluoxetine hydrochloride (0, 1, 5, or 10 mg/kg) and tested for sexual behavior with receptive females at 4-day intervals. Rats were treated with oxytocin (200 ng/kg) or saline after ejaculations had decreased. Fluoxetine decreased ejaculatory responses of male rats in a dose- and time-dependent fashion, but left the copulatory efficiency of the males intact. In contrast, conditioned level changing, a measure of appetitive sexual excitement, was inhibited following acute and chronic treatment with 10 mg/kg, although tolerance may have developed to the effect of 5 mg/kg. Subsequent administration of oxytocin restored the ejaculatory response but not the measure of sexual excitement to baseline levels. The reversal by oxytocin of the fluoxetine-induced deficit in ejaculations is consistent with the hypothesis that serotonin suppresses ejaculatory mechanisms by interrupting the action of oxytocin, which normally accompanies sexual behavior. Co-administration of oxytocin may help to alleviate the predominant sexual side effect of serotonin reuptake blockers.

  16. Supraoptic oxytocin and vasopressin neurons function as glucose and metabolic sensors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Song, Zhilin; Levin, Barry E; Stevens, Wanida; Sladek, Celia D

    2014-04-01

    Neurons in the supraoptic nuclei (SON) produce oxytocin and vasopressin and express insulin receptors (InsR) and glucokinase. Since oxytocin is an anorexigenic agent and glucokinase and InsR are hallmarks of cells that function as glucose and/or metabolic sensors, we evaluated the effect of glucose, insulin, and their downstream effector ATP-sensitive potassium (KATP) channels on calcium signaling in SON neurons and on oxytocin and vasopressin release from explants of the rat hypothalamo-neurohypophyseal system. We also evaluated the effect of blocking glucokinase and phosphatidylinositol 3 kinase (PI3K; mediates insulin-induced mobilization of glucose transporter, GLUT4) on responses to glucose and insulin. Glucose and insulin increased intracellular calcium ([Ca(2+)]i). The responses were glucokinase and PI3K dependent, respectively. Insulin and glucose alone increased vasopressin release (P glucose in the presence of insulin. The oxytocin (OT) and vasopressin (VP) responses to insulin+glucose were blocked by the glucokinase inhibitor alloxan (4 mM; P ≤ 0.002) and the PI3K inhibitor wortmannin (50 nM; OT: P = 0.03; VP: P ≤ 0.002). Inactivating K ATP channels with 200 nM glibenclamide increased oxytocin and vasopressin release (OT: P neurons functioning as glucose and "metabolic" sensors to participate in appetite regulation.

  17. Oxytocin receptor gene polymorphisms are associated with human directed social behavior in dogs (Canis familiaris).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kis, Anna; Bence, Melinda; Lakatos, Gabriella; Pergel, Enikő; Turcsán, Borbála; Pluijmakers, Jolanda; Vas, Judit; Elek, Zsuzsanna; Brúder, Ildikó; Földi, Levente; Sasvári-Székely, Mária; Miklósi, Adám; Rónai, Zsolt; Kubinyi, Enikő

    2014-01-01

    The oxytocin system has a crucial role in human sociality; several results prove that polymorphisms of the oxytocin receptor gene are related to complex social behaviors in humans. Dogs' parallel evolution with humans and their adaptation to the human environment has made them a useful species to model human social interactions. Previous research indicates that dogs are eligible models for behavioral genetic research, as well. Based on these previous findings, our research investigated associations between human directed social behaviors and two newly described (-212AG, 19131AG) and one known (rs8679684) single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in the regulatory regions (5' and 3' UTR) of the oxytocin receptor gene in German Shepherd (N = 104) and Border Collie (N = 103) dogs. Dogs' behavior traits have been estimated in a newly developed test series consisting of five episodes: Greeting by a stranger, Separation from the owner, Problem solving, Threatening approach, Hiding of the owner. Buccal samples were collected and DNA was isolated using standard protocols. SNPs in the 3' and 5' UTR regions were analyzed by polymerase chain reaction based techniques followed by subsequent electrophoresis analysis. The gene-behavior association analysis suggests that oxytocin receptor gene polymorphisms have an impact in both breeds on (i) proximity seeking towards an unfamiliar person, as well as their owner, and on (ii) how friendly dogs behave towards strangers, although the mediating molecular regulatory mechanisms are yet unknown. Based on these results, we conclude that similarly to humans, the social behavior of dogs towards humans is influenced by the oxytocin system.

  18. Supraoptic oxytocin and vasopressin neurons function as glucose and metabolic sensors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Song, Zhilin; Levin, Barry E.; Stevens, Wanida

    2014-01-01

    Neurons in the supraoptic nuclei (SON) produce oxytocin and vasopressin and express insulin receptors (InsR) and glucokinase. Since oxytocin is an anorexigenic agent and glucokinase and InsR are hallmarks of cells that function as glucose and/or metabolic sensors, we evaluated the effect of glucose, insulin, and their downstream effector ATP-sensitive potassium (KATP) channels on calcium signaling in SON neurons and on oxytocin and vasopressin release from explants of the rat hypothalamo-neurohypophyseal system. We also evaluated the effect of blocking glucokinase and phosphatidylinositol 3 kinase (PI3K; mediates insulin-induced mobilization of glucose transporter, GLUT4) on responses to glucose and insulin. Glucose and insulin increased intracellular calcium ([Ca2+]i). The responses were glucokinase and PI3K dependent, respectively. Insulin and glucose alone increased vasopressin release (P glucose in the presence of insulin. The oxytocin (OT) and vasopressin (VP) responses to insulin+glucose were blocked by the glucokinase inhibitor alloxan (4 mM; P ≤ 0.002) and the PI3K inhibitor wortmannin (50 nM; OT: P = 0.03; VP: P ≤ 0.002). Inactivating KATP channels with 200 nM glibenclamide increased oxytocin and vasopressin release (OT: P neurons functioning as glucose and “metabolic” sensors to participate in appetite regulation. PMID:24477542

  19. Oxytocin during labour and risk of severe postpartum haemorrhage: a population-based, cohort-nested case–control study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Belghiti, Jérémie; Kayem, Gilles; Dupont, Corinne; Rudigoz, René-Charles; Bouvier-Colle, Marie-Hélène

    2011-01-01

    Objectives Postpartum haemorrhage (PPH) is a major cause of maternal mortality and morbidity worldwide. Experimental studies support the hypothesis that oxytocin administration during labour, a common although not evidence-based practice, may increase the risk of atonic PPH. The clinical studies, however, are inconclusive. The objectives of this study was to investigate the association between the level of oxytocin exposure during labour and the risk of severe PPH and to explore whether the prophylactic use of oxytocin after birth modifies this association. Design Population-based, cohort-nested case–control study. Setting 106 French hospitals from December 2004 through November 2006. Participants Women with term singleton vaginal deliveries, after an uncomplicated pregnancy. Cases were 1483 women with severe PPH, defined by peripartum change in haemoglobin of ≥4 g/dl or need for blood transfusion. Controls were 1758 women from a random sample of parturients without PPH. Main outcome measures The independent association between the level of oxytocin during labour and the risk of severe PPH was tested and quantified with ORs through two-level multivariable logistic regression modelling. Results Oxytocin was administered during labour to 73% of cases and 61% of controls (crude OR: 1.7, 95% CI 1.5 to 2.0). After adjustment for all potential confounders, oxytocin during labour was associated with a significantly higher risk of severe PPH (adjusted OR: 1.8, 95% CI 1.3 to 2.6) in women who did not receive prophylactic oxytocin after delivery; the OR for haemorrhage increased from 1 to 5 according to the level of oxytocin exposure. In women who had prophylactic oxytocin after delivery, this association was significant only for the highest exposure categories. Conclusions Oxytocin during labour appears to be an independent risk factor for severe PPH. The results emphasise the need for guidelines clarifying the evidence-based indications for this procedure and the

  20. Pulmonary delivery of an ultra-fine oxytocin dry powder formulation: potential for treatment of postpartum haemorrhage in developing countries.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Prankerd, Richard J; Nguyen, Tri-Hung; Ibrahim, Jibriil P; Bischof, Robert J; Nassta, Gemma C; Olerile, Livesey D; Russell, Adrian S; Meiser, Felix; Parkington, Helena C; Coleman, Harold A; Morton, David A V; McIntosh, Michelle P

    2013-01-01

    Oxytocin is recommended by the World Health Organisation as the most effective uterotonic for the prevention and treatment of postpartum haemorrhage. The requirement for parenteral administration by trained healthcare providers and the need for the drug solution to be maintained under cold-chain storage limit the use of oxytocin in the developing world. In this study, a spray-dried ultrafine formulation of oxytocin was developed with an optimal particle size diameter (1-5 µm) to facilitate aerosolised delivery via the lungs. A powder formulation of oxytocin, using mannitol, glycine and leucine as carriers, was prepared with a volume-based median particle diameter of 1.9 µm. Oxytocin content in the formulation was assayed using high-performance liquid chromatography-mass spectroscopy and was found to be unchanged after spray-drying. Ex vivo contractility studies utilising human and ovine uterine tissue indicated no difference in the bioactivity of oxytocin before and after spray-drying. Uterine electromyographic (EMG) activity in postpartum ewes following pulmonary (in vivo) administration of oxytocin closely mimicked that observed immediately postpartum (0-12 h following normal vaginal delivery of the lamb). In comparison to the intramuscular injection, pulmonary administration of an oxytocin dry powder formulation to postpartum ewes resulted in generally similar EMG responses, however a more rapid onset of uterine EMG activity was observed following pulmonary administration (129 ± 18 s) than intramuscular injection (275 ± 22 s). This is the first study to demonstrate the potential for oxytocin to elicit uterine activity after systemic absorption as an aerosolised powder from the lungs. Aerosolised oxytocin has the potential to provide a stable and easy to administer delivery system for effective prevention and treatment of postpartum haemorrhage in resource-poor settings in the developing world.

  1. Pulmonary delivery of an ultra-fine oxytocin dry powder formulation: potential for treatment of postpartum haemorrhage in developing countries.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Richard J Prankerd

    Full Text Available Oxytocin is recommended by the World Health Organisation as the most effective uterotonic for the prevention and treatment of postpartum haemorrhage. The requirement for parenteral administration by trained healthcare providers and the need for the drug solution to be maintained under cold-chain storage limit the use of oxytocin in the developing world. In this study, a spray-dried ultrafine formulation of oxytocin was developed with an optimal particle size diameter (1-5 µm to facilitate aerosolised delivery via the lungs. A powder formulation of oxytocin, using mannitol, glycine and leucine as carriers, was prepared with a volume-based median particle diameter of 1.9 µm. Oxytocin content in the formulation was assayed using high-performance liquid chromatography-mass spectroscopy and was found to be unchanged after spray-drying. Ex vivo contractility studies utilising human and ovine uterine tissue indicated no difference in the bioactivity of oxytocin before and after spray-drying. Uterine electromyographic (EMG activity in postpartum ewes following pulmonary (in vivo administration of oxytocin closely mimicked that observed immediately postpartum (0-12 h following normal vaginal delivery of the lamb. In comparison to the intramuscular injection, pulmonary administration of an oxytocin dry powder formulation to postpartum ewes resulted in generally similar EMG responses, however a more rapid onset of uterine EMG activity was observed following pulmonary administration (129 ± 18 s than intramuscular injection (275 ± 22 s. This is the first study to demonstrate the potential for oxytocin to elicit uterine activity after systemic absorption as an aerosolised powder from the lungs. Aerosolised oxytocin has the potential to provide a stable and easy to administer delivery system for effective prevention and treatment of postpartum haemorrhage in resource-poor settings in the developing world.

  2. Oxytocin to augment labour during home births: an exploratory study in the urban slums of Dhaka, Bangladesh.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moran, A C; Wahed, T; Afsana, K

    2010-12-01

    In Bangladesh, the majority of women give birth at home. There is anecdotal evidence that unqualified allopathic practitioners (UAPs) administer oxytocin at home births to augment labour pain. The objective is to explore the use of oxytocin to augment labour pain during home births in an urban slum in Dhaka, Bangladesh. Cross-sectional survey. KamrangirChar slum, Dhaka, Bangladesh. Married women with a home birth or who experienced labour at home in the 6 months prior to the survey (n = 463) were interviewed. Twenty-seven UAPs were interviewed to validate women's responses. Bivariate and multivariate logistic regressions were used to identify significant predictors of oxytocin use. Reported use of oxytocin to augment labour pain. Forty-six percent of women reported using medicine or other treatments to augment labour pain, 131 of whom reported using oxytocin (28% of total). Traditional birth attendants were the predominant decision-makers of when to use oxytocin. The medication was provided by a UAP who administered the drug via saline infusion or intramuscular injection. Higher education, lower parity, reported long labour (more than 12 hours), and knowledge of and positive attitudes towards oxytocin were significantly associated with oxytocin use after controlling for other factors. In the validation exercise, there was agreement about the use of oxytocin to augment labour in 22 of 27 cases (82%). About one-third of women used oxytocin to augment labour pain. This practice has implications for health education as well as future research to assess the impact on adverse maternal and neonatal outcomes. © 2010 The Authors Journal compilation © RCOG 2010 BJOG An International Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology.

  3. The biosynthetic origin of irregular monoterpenes in Lavandula: isolation and biochemical characterization of a novel cis-prenyl diphosphate synthase gene, lavandulyl diphosphate synthase.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Demissie, Zerihun A; Erland, Lauren A E; Rheault, Mark R; Mahmoud, Soheil S

    2013-03-01

    Lavender essential oils are constituted predominantly of regular monoterpenes, for example linalool, 1,8-cineole, and camphor. However, they also contain irregular monoterpenes including lavandulol and lavandulyl acetate. Although the majority of genes responsible for the production of regular monoterpenes in lavenders are now known, enzymes (including lavandulyl diphosphate synthase (LPPS)) catalyzing the biosynthesis of irregular monoterpenes in these plants have not been described. Here, we report the isolation and functional characterization of a novel cis-prenyl diphosphate synthase cDNA, termed Lavandula x intermedia lavandulyl diphosphate synthase (LiLPPS), through a homology-based cloning strategy. The LiLPPS ORF, encoding for a 305-amino acid long protein, was expressed in Escherichia coli, and the recombinant protein was purified by nickel-nitrilotriacetic acid affinity chromatography. The approximately 34.5-kDa bacterially produced protein specifically catalyzed the head-to-middle condensation of two dimethylallyl diphosphate units to LPP in vitro with apparent Km and kcat values of 208 ± 12 μm and 0.1 s(-1), respectively. LiLPPS is a homodimeric enzyme with a sigmoidal saturation curve and Hill coefficient of 2.7, suggesting a positive co-operative interaction among its catalytic sites. LiLPPS could be used to modulate the production of lavandulol and its derivatives in plants through metabolic engineering.

  4. Effects of oxytocin on behavioral and ERP measures of recognition memory for own-race and other-race faces in women and men.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Herzmann, Grit; Bird, Christopher W; Freeman, Megan; Curran, Tim

    2013-10-01

    Oxytocin has been shown to affect human social information processing including recognition memory for faces. Here we investigated the neural processes underlying the effect of oxytocin on memorizing own-race and other-race faces in men and women. In a placebo-controlled, double-blind, between-subject study, participants received either oxytocin or placebo before studying own-race and other-race faces. We recorded event-related potentials (ERPs) during both the study and recognition phase to investigate neural correlates of oxytocin's effect on memory encoding, memory retrieval, and perception. Oxytocin increased the accuracy of familiarity judgments in the recognition test. Neural correlates for this effect were found in ERPs related to memory encoding and retrieval but not perception. In contrast to its facilitating effects on familiarity, oxytocin impaired recollection judgments, but in men only. Oxytocin did not differentially affect own-race and other-race faces. This study shows that oxytocin influences memory, but not perceptual processes, in a face recognition task and is the first to reveal sex differences in the effect of oxytocin on face memory. Contrary to recent findings in oxytocin and moral decision making, oxytocin did not preferentially improve memory for own-race faces. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  5. Boosting recovery rather than buffering reactivity: Higher stress-induced oxytocin secretion is associated with increased cortisol reactivity and faster vagal recovery after acute psychosocial stress.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Engert, Veronika; Koester, Anna M; Riepenhausen, Antje; Singer, Tania

    2016-12-01

    Animal models and human studies using paradigms designed to stimulate endogenous oxytocin release suggest a stress-buffering role of oxytocin. We here examined the involvement of stress-induced peripheral oxytocin secretion in reactivity and recovery phases of the human psychosocial stress response. Healthy male and female participants (N=114) were subjected to a standardized laboratory stressor, the Trier Social Stress Test. In addition to plasma oxytocin, cortisol was assessed as a marker of hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA-) axis activity, alpha-amylase and heart rate as markers of sympathetic activity, high frequency heart rate variability as a marker of vagal tone and self-rated anxiety as an indicator of subjective stress experience. On average, oxytocin levels increased by 51% following psychosocial stress. The stress-induced oxytocin secretion, however, did not reduce stress reactivity. To the contrary, higher oxytocin secretion was associated with greater cortisol reactivity and peak cortisol levels in both sexes. In the second phase of the stress response the opposite pattern was observed, with higher oxytocin secretion associated with faster vagal recovery. We suggest that after an early stage of oxytocin and HPA-axis co-activation, the stress-reducing action of oxytocin unfolds. Due to the time lag it manifests as a recovery-boosting rather than a reactivity-buffering effect. By reinforcing parasympathetic autonomic activity, specifically during stress recovery, oxytocin may provide an important protective function against the health-compromising effects of sustained stress. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  6. Glycogen Synthase in Sertoli Cells: More Than Glycogenesis?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maldonado, Rodrigo; Mancilla, Héctor; Villarroel-Espíndola, Franz; Slebe, Felipe; Slebe, Juan Carlos; Méndez, Raúl; Guinovart, Joan J; Concha, Ilona I

    2016-11-01

    Sertoli cell metabolism actively maintains the nutritional needs of germ cells. It has been described that after glucose incorporation in Sertoli cells, less than 1% is converted to glycogen suggesting low levels of glycogen synthase activity. Phosphorylation of muscle glycogen synthase (MGS) at serine 640 (pS640MGS) decreases its activity, and this form of the enzyme was discovered as a non-ribosomal protein that modulates the translation of a subset of transcripts in HeLa cells. The aim of our study was to functionally characterize MGS in cultured Sertoli cells, as well as to explore this new feature related to RNA molecules. We detected MGS in the cytoplasm of Sertoli cells as well as in the nuclei. The activity rates of the enzyme were extremely low indicating that MGS is expressed but almost inactive. Protein targeting to glycogen (PTG) overexpression was performed to activate MGS by dephosphorylation. PTG induced glycogen synthesis massively, confirming that this enzyme is present but inactive. This finding correlates with high levels of pS640MGS, which were assayed by phosphatase treatment. To explore a putative new function for MGS in Sertoli cells, we performed RNA immunoprecipitation coupled to microarray studies. The results revealed that MGS co-immunoprecipitated with the several mRNAs and also rRNAs. These findings indicate that MGS is expressed Sertoli cells but in an inactive form, and also support a possibly novel feature of this metabolic enzyme associated with RNA-related molecules. J. Cell. Biochem. 117: 2597-2607, 2016. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  7. Conception, synthesis and evaluation of fluorescent probes and PET radioligands for the oxytocin and vasopressin receptors

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Karpenko, Iuliia

    2014-01-01

    In order to better understand the role of OTR and AVPR in ASD, to reveal new features in its pharmacology and signaling and to establish high-throughput screening method on wild-type G protein-coupled receptors, we developed imaging probes for the oxytocin-vasopressin receptors family, namely radiotracers for positron emission tomography and optical probes for fluorescence detection and imaging. The fluorescent ligands have been used to establish TR-FRET binding assay for OTR and to initiate the development the screening assay for the wild-type oxytocin receptor. The PET radiotracers will be shortly tested in mice and monkeys to evaluate their potency in detecting the central oxytocin receptors. (author)

  8. Hormones, stress, and cognition: The effects of glucocorticoids and oxytocin on memory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wirth, Michelle M.

    2014-01-01

    Hormones have nuanced effects