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      “Monogamy” in Primates: Variability, Trends and Synthesis : Introduction to Special Issue on Primate Monogamy

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          This paper is the introduction to a special issue on “'Monogamy' in Primates: Variability, Trends, and Synthesis”. The term “monogamy” has undergone redefinition over the years, and is now generally understood to refer to certain social characteristics rather than to genetic monogamy. However, even the term “social monogamy” is used loosely to refer to species which exhibit a spectrum of social structures, mating patterns, and breeding systems. Papers in this volume address key issues including whether or not our definitions of monogamy should change in order to better represent the social and mating behaviors that characterize wild primates; whether or not primate groups traditionally considered monogamous are actually so (by any definition); ways in which captive studies can contribute to our understanding of monogamy; and what selective pressures might have driven the evolution of monogamous and nonmonogamous single female breeding systems.

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          Monogamy in Mammals

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            Oxytocin administered centrally facilitates formation of a partner preference in female prairie voles (Microtus ochrogaster).

            Prairie voles (Microtus ochrogaster) are monogamous mammals that form male-female pair bonds. Partner preference formation, one component of the pair bond in prairie voles, occurs following male-female cohabitation and is facilitated by mating. The peptide hormone oxytocin is released during physical contact and particularly following vaginal stimulation. Oxytocin has been implicated in mother-infant bond formation. The present study tested the hypothesis that oxytocin participates in the partner preference component of pair bond formation in adult prairie voles. Ovariectomized female prairie voles were implanted with osmotic mini-pumps releasing oxytocin (1-100 ng/h) or artificial cerebrospinal fluid (CSF). Pumps were implanted intracerebroventricularly or subcutaneously and females then were housed for 6 h with a male partner, followed by a preference test in which females could elect to spend time with either the partner or an unfamiliar male. Females in groups that received centrally-administered oxytocin (10 or 100 ng/h), but not CSF, exhibited a significant preference for the partner present during infusion. The induction of a partner preference after oxytocin administration appeared specific for central oxytocin pathways as peripheral oxytocin administration was ineffective. Moreover, central administration of a selective oxytocin receptor antagonist inhibited the behavioral effect of exogenous oxytocin. These results suggest that oxytocin may be one factor contributing to the development of partner preferences in this monogamous rodent.
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              Extra-pair paternity in monogamous tree swallows


                Author and article information

                Am J Primatol
                Am. J. Primatol.
                American journal of primatology
                14 April 2017
                28 August 2015
                March 2016
                17 June 2017
                : 78
                : 3
                : 283-287
                [1 ]Center for Genomics and Systems Biology and Department of Biology, 12 Waverly Place, New York University, New York, NY 10003 USA, sam.diazmunoz@ 123456nyu.edu
                Author notes
                #Corresponding Author: Department of Psychology, University of California, Davis, California 95616, California National Primate Research Center, Davis, California, Ph: 530-754-5890, klbales@ 123456ucdavis.edu
                PMC5474116 PMC5474116 5474116 nihpa867048


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