Abstract # 76:

Scheduled for Friday, June 20, 2008 05:00 PM-07:00 PM: Session 12 (Ball Rooms A and B) Poster Presentation

A description of developmental changes in socially-housed bonnet macaque (Macaca radiata) mother–infant interactions

M. L. Laudenslager1,2, C. Natvig1, B. Giura1, T. Chavanne2, M. W. Blevins2 and A. J. Bennett2
1University of Colorado School of Medicine, Department of Psychiatry, Denver , CO 80220, USA, 2Wake Forest University School of Medicine, Department of Physiology and Pharmacology & Department of Pediatrics, Wake Forest University Primate Center, Winston Salem, NC 27157
     The early mother-infant (M-I) relationship has a long-term impact on the biobehavioral developmental trajectories of the offspring. As part of a long-term investigation of this relationship and later behavior in adolescent bonnet macaques (M. radiata), longitudinal observations were collected of the interactions of 22 M-I pairs between 30 and 180 days of age. M-I interactions were collected by video and with the infant as the focal subject subsequently were scored by four reliable coders [Pearson r>0.85] using The Observer software. Behavior categories included M-I behaviors, infant-other interactions, infant alone behaviors, and infant social behaviors. Not surprisingly developmental trends were noted. Over this age range, the Hinde Proximity Index of the M-I pair rose [F(2,22)=4.32, p=0.034] indicating increasing infant independence. However most importantly there were substantial individual differences in all behavioral categories. A unique method for graphic analysis was applied that allowed behaviors with wide individual differences in their frequencies and durations to be compared along a common dimension using polar plots of z-score transformed behaviors. This method allows for quick identification of mother- infant pairs that represent outlying behavioral patterns which will serve as the basis for investigating individual differences in the offspring’s behavioral reactions to challenge situations including introduction to a new social group, response to novelty, and adolescent alcohol consumption. [Supported in part by NIH Grants AA013973(MLL), AA13995(AB) and AA11997(AB)].