Drug Addiction and Bonding
Doctor Larry Young discusses his research with prairie voles and suggests that the same neurobiological processes may underlie drug addiction and bonding.
Using the prairie voles weâ€™ve been trying to understand what neurochemicals, what brain mechanisms are involved in bonding and what weâ€™ve found is that there are two peptides, oxytocin and vasopressin, that seem to be important to the bonding process. We believe that oxytocin is released in the female prairie vole when she mates with a partner or vasopressin is released in the male when he mates with a partner, and the release of these hormones in the brain activates certain brain areas that then stimulate the formation of the bond. We believe that these hormones are probably also released not just during sexual activity, but just grooming, social interaction and they somehow activate the brainâ€™s reward reinforcement centers, the pleasure centers. Really, the same parts of the brain that are involved in addiction and so maybe forming a strong bond with a partner has the same underlying biology as becoming addicted to a drug.
bonding, bond, relationship, drug, addiction, prairie voles, reward, social interaction, vasopressin, oxytocin, peptides, hormones, addiction, biology, larry, young
- ID: 2375
- Source: DNALC.G2C
Doctor Larry Young discusses how vasopressin and oxytocin contribute to the reward system, which can promote behavior such as bonding and drug addiction.
Doctor Larry Young explains that social personality traits are influenced by levels of oxytocin and vasopressin in the brain.
Doctor Larry Young explains that the genes that encode for vasopressin receptors can predict social behaviors. This intriguing finding makes the link between genes, the brain and behavior.
Doctor Larry Young discusses that he believes there is a biological basis to love.
Doctor Thomas Insel continues his discussion of the two neuropeptides, vasopressin and oxytocin.
Doctor Larry Young discusses how dopamine and oxytocin interact in the reward and reinforcement parts of the brain to help form social bonds.
Doctor Larry Young explains that the experience of being in love activates pleasure centers in the brain, and comments that bonding in prairie voles may be similar to humans.
Doctor Larry Young discusses evidence of a relationship between oxytocin and autism, speculating that oxytocin may be used to treat autism.
Doctor Larry Young describes the prairie vole as an excellent model species because it forms social bonds similar to humans.
Doctor Thomas Insel discusses the importance of two neuropeptides - oxytocin and vasopressin - in relation to attachment and social bonding.