Study calls into question the role of the "love hormone" oxytocin in social situations

Updated: Jan 28 2023 1:11PM

Los Angeles, Jan 28 (PTI) Scientists found that prairie voles bred without receptors for oxytocin and showed the same monogamous mating, attachment, and parenting behaviours as regular voles, calling into question the notion that oxytocin is the "love hormone", essential for forming social bonds and parenting.

New research from scientists at UC San Francisco (UCSF), US, and Stanford Medicine, US, shows that the receptor for oxytocin may not play the critical role that scientists have assigned to it for the past 30 years, turning a decades-old dogma on its head.

In addition, females without oxytocin receptors gave birth and produced milk, though in smaller quantities, than ordinary female voles, the study said.