Abstract # 40:

Scheduled for Thursday, June 19, 2008 05:00 PM-07:00 PM: Session 4 (Ball Rooms A and B) Poster Presentation

Consistency in Behavioral Responsiveness from Infancy to Adulthood

E. C. Sullivan1,2 and J. P. Capitanio1,2
1University of California, Davis, Department of Psychology, One Shields Avenue, Davis, CA 95616, USA, 2California National Primate Research Center
     Temperament (an individual’s consistent pattern of responsiveness) is thought to be present early in life and stable over time; however, few studies have examined temperament from infancy into adulthood. This study investigated stability in behavioral responsiveness in twenty-nine socially-reared female rhesus monkeys (Macaca mulatta) at the California National Primate Research Center. Subjects were assessed at 3-4 months of age and again approximately 4 years later. At both time points, animals were separated from their social groups and relocated to a novel environment for 25 hours during which two 5-minute behavioral observations were made: immediately upon placement into the novel environment (Introduction: 0930h) and approximately 22 hours later (Adaptation: 0715h). Two factors, identified via factor analysis of more than 1000 animals, described patterns of responsiveness in infancy: Emotionality (which includes cooing) and Activity (which includes locomotion). Infant factor scores were compared with adult behaviors using t-tests [a=0.05] which revealed several consistencies. For example, adults that cooed during Adaptation (n=15) exhibited higher Emotionality in infancy during both observations, in comparison to those that did not coo. In addition, adults that displayed locomotion during Adaptation (n=22) had higher infant Activity scores during Adaptation than did adults that did not locomote. Together, these results suggest that patterns of behavioral responsiveness to placement in novel surroundings are consistent between infancy and adulthood, suggesting that these are stable qualities of temperament.