Abstract # 225:

Scheduled for Saturday, August 19, 2006 11:45 AM-12:00 AM: Session 21 (Regency East #3) Oral Presentation


QUALITY OF EXPERIENCE AND EARLY EMOTION REGULATION PREDICT ADULT RESPONSE TO NOVELTY IN FEMALE RHESUS MACAQUES

E. L. Kinnally1,2, S. P. Mendoza1,2, W. A. Mason1,2 and J. P. Capitanio1,2
1Department of Psychology, University of California Davis, Davis, CA 95616, USA, 2California National Primate Research Center
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     Quality of early experience has consistently been shown to contribute to individual differences along the impulsivity/inhibition behavioral spectrum. In a longitudinal study, we examined the contributions of early experience and temperament to response to novelty in 40 adult female rhesus macaques (Macaca mulatta). Animals had been reared with mother (MR), nursery-peer reared/mother-deprived (NR) or reared with a mother who was herself maternally deprived (MNR). At 3-4 months of age, all animals were separated from social groups and/or mothers for a 24-hour testing period to assess emotionality. As adults, animals were tested on a battery of novelty tasks. Factor analysis of performance on adult novelty tasks revealed a “caution” factor. Subjects that were more emotionally reactive as infants were less cautious as adults (r = -.390, p < .05). Further, NR individuals exhibited the least, and MNR individuals the greatest, caution as adults (p < .05). These data suggest that measures of temperament in infancy are related to measures of response to novelty in adults. Early rearing, further, plays a role in adult response to novelty, where maternal deprivation is associated with lower “caution” in adulthood. Most notably, the highest levels of caution are found in adult offspring of mothers who were themselves maternally deprived, indicating that the effects of early rearing may impact subsequent generations.