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January 11, 2006

Fatherhood Messes Monkey Minds

Fatherhood Messes Monkey Minds

Researchers from Princeton University have discovered significant changes in the brain structure of male Common Marmosets on becoming a father.

Marmosets are a primate species where the fathers stay involved with their offspring.
The changes in brain structure are triggered by hormonal changes also found in human males with a pregnant partner.

Connections between neurons increased in an area of the brain responsible for memory and planning. Receptor numbers for the hormone ‘vasopressin’ also increased.

Some of these changes reversed once the young became independent, but could be observed again if a new one was born.

Father & Child News