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Monogamy: dopamine ties the knot

Prairie voles form lasting pair bonds with their mating partners after a single experience of sexual activity, and this reward-related learning depends on dopamine. A new paper reports that two dopamine receptor subtypes contribute differently to the initial formation of pair bonds and to their maintenance by the promotion of selective aggression toward alternative mates.

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Figure 1: Dopamine signaling in the formation and maintenance of pair bonds in male prairie voles.

Debbie Maizels


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Edwards, S., Self, D. Monogamy: dopamine ties the knot. Nat Neurosci 9, 7–8 (2006).

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