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Lecture 4

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University of Toronto Scarborough
David Haley

Lecture 4February 2 Keeping track of where oxytocin is produced in the brain o Produced in the hypothalamus not about its central role more about its peripheral roleSecreted in the brain it has a lot of effects on our social processes o Also released from the posterior lobe of the pituitary gland o It is secreted when you are interacting with people centrally and peripherallyBigger surges of it occur during activities like sexSmaller surges while touching massaging swimming in warm water physical exerciseHighest amount during pregnancyPrairie voles who are deeply attached upon first meeting vs Montane voles who are not attached easily o Prairie voles have a higher level of interaction with their pups contrasting montane voles o Montane voles have half the level of oxytocin that prairie voles have until they become parents which is when their levels riseOxytocin during pregnancy Feldman 2007this study was on humans o As you increase levels of oxytocin during pregnancy you dramatically decrease levels of cortisolWe want to know whether these changes in their hormones has any bearing on their caregiving behaviourthey found that the more oxytocin you have during the third trimester is related to greater maternal behaviour in the postpartum months SLIDEchanges in oxytocin during pregnancy predi
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