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Penulis Topik: Mouse love grows neuron  (Dibaca 5248 kali)

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Mouse love grows neuron
« pada: Agustus 22, 2007, 10:11:47 AM »
menarik juga ya riset dengan topik kaya gini  :D

Mouse love and neurons
Natalie DeWitt1
Nature Reports Stem Cells - Published online: 16 August 2007

Dominant male pheromones stimulate neurogenesis in females

Humans have long pondered the magic ingredient that makes some first dates sizzle and others fizzle. Scientists have now discovered clues to this mystery in a most unlikely place—the soiled bed linens of alpha male mice1.

Female mice recognize hunky males by sniffing their sex pheromones. When pheromones reach a part of the females' nose called the olfactory epithelium, they set off a surge of hormones, causing female mice to seek out the dominant males for sex.

Samuel Weiss and colleagues at University of Calgary wanted to know whether these responses were caused by the birth of new neurons. They kept female mice near bedding soiled with pheromone containing urine of dominant male mice for a week. Then they peered into the females' brains, specifically in the hippocampus, an area known to produce new neurons in adults.

They stained the hippocampus for molecules that are present only when cells proliferate. They also tagged immature and mature neurons using other telltale markers. These experiments showed new neurons in two parts of the hippocampus: the dentate gyrus and subventricular zone. In mice, new neurons from this zone make their way to the olfactory bulb.

The researchers tried the same experiment using soiled bedding from dominant males that had been castrated. Bedding from truly castrated males did not spur neurogenesis, but bedding from males that had undergone a sham operation did. Next, they washed out females' noses with zinc sulfate. This destroys the olfactory epithelium and so the ability to sense pheromones. When these females were exposed to soiled bedding, neurogenesis did not increase. It seemed clear that pheromones underlie neurogenesis, and the researchers wanted to know why.

Next, the researchers wanted to know if neurogenesis explains why females prefer dominant males. They blocked neurogenesis in the subventricular zone using a molecule that prevents cell division. Now, females no longer preferred dominant males.

It's not clear precisely how these brain regions figure in pheromone-induced behavior. Finding out will require the creation of genetic mouse lines where neurogenesis can be selectively turned off in specific brain regions. Is human reproductive behavior similarly induced by pheromones? There are hints that it is. Pheromones are believed to synchronize menstrual cycles in women who live together2, and women's brains respond to volatile male hormones3. Perhaps sexy scents can grow new neurons in humans too.   ;D

Further reading
Bedard, A. & Parent, A. Evidence of newly generated neurons in the human olfactory bulb. Brain Res. Dev. Brain Res.151, 159–168 (2004).
DiRocco, D.P. & Zhengui Xia. Alpha males win again. Nat. Neurosci.10, 938–940 (2007).
Dulac, C. & Torello, A.T. Molecular detection of pheromone signals in mammals: from genes to behavior. Nat. Rev. Neurosci.4, 551–562 (2003).
Grammer, K., Fink, B. & Neave, N. Human pheromones and sexual attraction. Eur. J. Obstet. Gynecol. Reprod. Biol.118, 135–142 (2005).

Mak et al. Male pheromone–stimulated neurogenesis in the adult female brain: possible role in mating behavior. Nat. Neurosci. 10, 1003–1011 (2007), Published online: 1 July 2007; doi:doi: 10.1038/nn1928 | Article | PubMed | ChemPort |
Bigiani, A., Mucignat-Caretta, C., Montani, G. & Tirindelli, R. Pheromone reception in mammals. Rev. Physiol. Biochem. Pharmacol. 154, 1–35 (2005). | PubMed | ISI | ChemPort |
Savic, I., Berglund, H., Gulyas, B. & Roland, P. Smelling of odorous sex hormone–like compounds causes sex-differentiated hypothalamic activations in humans. Neuron 31, 661–668 (2001). | Article | PubMed | ISI | ChemPort |
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