Abstract # 13251 Event # 122:

Scheduled for Friday, August 10, 2018 11:00 AM-11:15 AM: (Chula Vista ) Oral Presentation


AUTONOMIC NERVOUS SYSTEM REGULATION DURING PARTNER PREFERENCE TESTING IN PAIR BONDING TITI MONKEYS (CALLICEBUS CUPREUS).

E. S. Rothwell
UC Davis, Davis, CA 95616, USA
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     Patterns of emotion expression and regulation during conflict differentiate between happy and unhappy couples in humans. Specifically, patterns of autonomic nervous system (ANS) responses can predict relationship longevity and satisfaction. We investigated the connection between relationship satisfaction and ANS regulation in pair bonding titi monkeys (Callicebus cupreus). We hypothesized that, like humans, measures of relationship satisfaction would influence ANS regulation during social conflict. We measured heart rate (HR) from six titi pairs at the California National Primate Research Center. To create social conflict we used a partner preference test (PPT), where an animal is simultaneously presented with the partner and an opposite-sex stranger for approximately 3 hours. We used homecage scan samples to derive an affiliation score for each pair. Growth curve analyses revealed that HR declined during the first hour of the PPT and then plateaued. Affiliation score did not predict initial HRs but did predict HR decline for males (p < 0.05). Males from more affiliative pairs had a steeper decline of HR than males from less affiliative pairs. Affiliation score did not predict HR decline for females. These sex differences fit with results in humans where husbands show greater ANS activation during relationship conflict compared to wives. This preliminary study also suggests that ANS regulation for males is more sensitive to relationship satisfaction than females in pair bonding humans and non-human primates.