ANT211H5 Lecture Notes - Lecture 4: Sex Steroid, Autonomic Nervous System, Sexual Differentiation

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14 Feb 2016
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SEX DIFFERENTIATION: BRAIN & BEHAVIOUR
Sexual Response
Subjective sense of sexual excitement or arousal
Interaction between
Cognitive information processing
Central brain mechanisms
Peripheral physiological processes
Psychosomatic circle
Central brain mechanisms
Neural signals
Peripheral sexual responses
Excitory
inhibitory
Cognitive
Automatic
controlled
COPULATION
a sexually dimorphic behavior
Males: pelvis thrusting
Females: lordosis
•under the in/uence of gonadal hormones
•Has organizing and activating function
E.G.Rats
Males
•Castrated at 1 day old – no copulation
•Castrated after 1 week – will copulate with testosterone in adulthood
Females
Given organizing and activating shots of testosterone – lose capacity
for lordosis; will exhibit male copulatory behaviour
Testicular function:
relevant to sexual di7erentiation
Early testosterone in/uences neural organization underlying male
copulation
Early testicular function leads to masculinization
Lack of gonadal function leads to feminization
Activating androgens at puberty for humans
Males (testosterone)
9-10 years old (shortly before puberty)
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