Abstract # 58:

Scheduled for Thursday, June 21, 2007 05:00 PM-07:00 PM: Session 7 (South Main Hall) Poster Presentation

Neuroendocrinology of Alloparental Care in Titi Monkeys (Callicebus cupreus)

C. M. Hostetler1,2, S. P. Mendoza1,2, W. A. Mason1,2 and K. L. Bales1,2
1UC Davis, Department of Psychology, One Shields Avenue, Davis, CA 95616, USA, 2California National Primate Research Center
     In many cooperatively breeding species, older siblings may contribute to infant care. The aim of this current research is to explore the endocrine correlates of sibling alloparenting in the monogamous titi monkey (Callicebus cupreus). Infants were observed via one-hour videotaped sessions (three times a week from birth to three months, then once weekly to nine months). Duration spent carrying the infant, frequency of anogenital licking, investigation, and face licking by siblings was scored. Blood samples were collected monthly from siblings one month following birth to six months. Plasma concentrations of the neuropeptides oxytocin (OT) and arginine vasopressin (AVP) were measured by enzyme immunoassay. Preliminary results indicate that the sibling’s AVP during the second month post-birth was negatively correlated with the amount of sibling carrying during weeks two-four [r(3)=-0.97, p=0.005]. However, the frequency of face licking during weeks two-four was positively correlated with both the sibling’s AVP from the second month [r(3)=0.95, p=0.014] and their average OT over six months post-birth [r(7)=0.67, p=0.047]. Infant weight at three months was positively correlated with plasma AVP at three months [r(8)=0.71, p=0.021]. Urine samples were collected from siblings on a weekly basis. These results suggest a relationship between neuroendocrine hormones and the expression of alloparenting in titi monkeys. Supported by the CNPRC and the Good Nature Institute.