The neurobiology of social bonds
The Babraham Institute Cambridge, UK.
J Neuroendocrinol. 2004 Dec;16(12):1007-8.
When released in the brain through giving birth or mating, the neuropeptides oxytocin and vasopressin are involved in promoting parent-offspring and monogamous bonds in animals such as sheep and voles. Bonds are only formed in species where receptors for these neuropeptides are highly expressed in dopamine-producing reward centres. In humans, dysfunctions in these same systems can be associated with autism and, when we see people we love, these systems become activated.
The power of love
Oxytocin and voles
Oxytocin and drugs
Oxytocin and women
Oxytocin and estradiol
Oxytocin and addiction
The evolution of emotion
Oxytocin and social interaction
Oxytocin, addiction and the science of love