Nov 19, 2014

Oxytocin and vasopressin receptor gene variation as a proximate base for inter- and intraspecific behavioral differences in bonobos and chimpanzees

PloS One
Nicky StaesMarcel Eens

Abstract

Recent literature has revealed the importance of variation in neuropeptide receptor gene sequences in the regulation of behavioral phenotypic variation. Here we focus on polymorphisms in the oxytocin receptor gene (OXTR) and vasopressin receptor gene 1a (Avpr1a) in chimpanzees and bonobos. In humans, a single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) in the third intron of OXTR (rs53576 SNP (A/G)) is linked with social behavior, with the risk allele (A) carriers showing reduced levels of empathy and prosociality. Bonobos and chimpanzees differ in these same traits, therefore we hypothesized that these differences might be reflected in variation at the rs53576 position. We sequenced a 320 bp region surrounding rs53576 but found no indications of this SNP in the genus Pan. However, we identified previously unreported SNP variation in the chimpanzee OXTR sequence that differs from both humans and bonobos. Humans and bonobos have previously been shown to have a more similar 5' promoter region of Avpr1a when compared to chimpanzees, who are polymorphic for the deletion of ∼ 360 bp in this region (+/- DupB) which includes a microsatellite (RS3). RS3 has been linked with variation in levels of social bonding, potentially explaining part of the in...Continue Reading

  • References69
  • Citations16

Mentioned in this Paper

Short Tandem Repeat
Biochemical Pathway
Pongidae
Equine Laminitis
Adrenal Cortex Diseases
Antidiuretic Hormone Measurement
Oxytocin Receptor
Brain
Candidate Disease Gene
Ncbi Taxonomy

Related Feeds

Amygdala: Sensory Processes

Amygdalae, nuclei clusters located in the temporal lobe of the brain, play a role in memory, emotional responses, and decision-making. Here is the latest research on sensory processes in the amygdala.

Amygdala and Midbrain Dopamine

The midbrain dopamine system is widely studied for its involvement in emotional and motivational behavior. Some of these neurons receive information from the amygdala and project throughout the cortex. When the circuit and transmission of dopamine is disrupted symptoms may present. Here is the latest research on the amygdala and midbrain dopamine.