Abstract # 5974 Poster # 147:

Scheduled for Sunday, September 14, 2014 07:00 PM-09:00 PM: Session 22 (Decatur B) Poster Presentation


5HTTLPR GENE, MOTHER’S SOCIAL DOMINANCE, AND INFANT CORTISOL IN RHESUS MACAQUES (MACACA MULATTA) LIVING IN LARGE OUTDOOR ENCLOSURES

K. R. Glass1, M. T. Bennett1, B. S. Humbert1, A. N. Sorenson1, B. Mcowan2, J. P. Capitanio2 and J. D. Higley1
1Brigham Young University, Department of Psychology, 1042 SWKT, Provo, UT 84602, USA, 2California National Primate Research Center, Davis, CA 95616
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     The acquisition of rank and social status in rhesus macaque societies resembles in many ways that of humans in that it is based on alliances and social cognition, thus enabling researchers to use rhesus monkeys to model the acquisition of human social status. Paralleling humans, maternal high social status confers advantages of safety, reproductive fitness, and resource acquisition. In this study we examined the relationship between early infant plasma cortisol levels, serotonin genotype, and matrilineal social dominance rank. Subjects were 2,300 infant male rhesus macaques born at the California National Primate Research Center between the years of 2001 and 2012. Subjects were tested using a series of tests conducted when they were 3 to 4 months old. Data showed higher plasma cortisol concentrations in high ranking males when compared to less dominant males following both dexamethasone and ACTH administration (at the p<.05 level). A three-way interaction was observed between 5HTTLPR, dominance rank, and cortisol sample. Overall, high ranking males with the ss genotype exhibited lower plasma cortisol than the LL and Ls genotype subjects (at the p<.05 level). These findings form a framework for further research to analyze the nature of rank acquisition, HPA axis regulation, and serotonin genotype in dominant males.