Both Larry Young (Yerkes/Center for Translational Social Neuroscience) and Robert LiuÂ (Dept of Biology) were quoted last week in ScienceÂ and National Geographic PhenomenaÂ commenting on research dealing with the hormone oxytocin and maternal behavior.
Young is well known for studying oxytocin’s role in pair bonding in voles, and Liu studies how mother mice learn to recognize their pups’ ultrasonic communications, making them both ideal for evaluating the new research.
ScientistsÂ at New York University found that oxytocin helps to focus the brains of new mother mice on their pups’ calls — specifically acting on a region of the brain responsible for processing sound. The paper was published in NatureÂ — with a companionÂ News + Views from Liu.
NatGeoÂ blogger Ed Yong has been a critic of the “love hormone” hype surrounding oxytocin, and he and Young seem to have had a meeting of the minds on thisÂ Nature paper.
â€œThis kind of study, which gets into details and doesnâ€™t attribute fluffy psychological traits to this molecule, is exactly what we need to move the field forward,” LY tells EY.