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SAVE THE DATE! SBN 2016

The 20th annual Society for Behavioral Neuroendocrinology meeting — June 22 – 25 in Montreal, at Le Centre Sheraton Montreal Hotel.
2015 Election Results

Congratulations to President-Elect Rae Silver and Secretary Colin J. Saldanha.

Welcome from the President

SBN President Cheryl Sisk.

GREETINGS TO ALL SBN MEMBERS!
I am delighted and honored to be your new President. SBN is a wonderful organization that provides significant benefits to its members. I look forward to helping the society meet your interests and needs in science and professional development, and I encourage you to share your ideas about how SBN can best serve you.

—Elizabeth Adkins-Regan

Upcoming Meetings

Become a Member of the SBN

The Society for Behavioral Neuroendocrinology offers four levels of eligibility for prospective members: Regular, Emeritus, Student, or Associate Memberships.

To see which membership class you qualify for, please review the membership eligibility requirements.

For additional information on SBN and the rules of membership, please see the SBN Bylaws.

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Elected Officers

PRESIDENT (2015-2017) Elizabeth Adkins-Regan

PRESIDENT-ELECT (2015-20175) Rae Silver

PAST PRESIDENT (2015-2017) Cheryl Sisk

SECRETARY (2015-2017) Colin John Saldanha

TREASURER (2013-2016) Nancy Forger

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Hormones and Behavior

Monday, August 31, 2015
Publication date: September 2015
Source:Hormones and Behavior, Volume 75

Author(s): S.L. Jones, J. Gardner Gregory, J.G. Pfaus

An acute injection of estradiol benzoate (EB) to the ovariectomized (OVX) rat activates low levels of lordosis, and subsequent progesterone (P) administration augments lordosis and recruits a complete pattern of sexual behavior including appetitive behaviors (e.g., hops/darts and solicitations). However, repeated injections of 5μg or 10μg EB (but not 2μg EB), administered every 4days to sexually-experienced OVX rats results in a behavioral sensitization, such that lordosis quotients (LQs) and appetitive behaviors progressively increase. We have shown that adrenal P does not play a critical role because behavioral sensitization to EB is not prevented by adrenalectomy. Here we tested whether P receptors play a role by examining the effect of chronic administration of the P receptor antagonist RU486 at a dose that reliably inhibits sexual behavior in fully primed OVX rats. Females were treated with EB (5 or 10μg), and 5mg RU486 dissolved in 0.4mL vehicle (VEH; 80% sesame oil, 15% benzyl benzoate, 5% benzyl alcohol) 48h and 5h prior to each of 7 tests, respectively, occurring at 4-day intervals in unilevel 4-hole pacing chambers. Control animals were treated with 2, 5, or 10μg EB+VEH. As expected, sensitization did not occur in females treated with 2μg EB+VEH, and those females received fewer intromissions and ejaculations than all other groups. RU486 did not prevent the sensitization of LQ, moderate and high lordosis magnitudes (LM2 and LM3) or appetitive sexual behaviors on early tests, and in fact potentiated appetitive behaviors, LQ, LM2 and LM3, consistent with its facilitative actions in females treated with EB-alone, as we and others have reported previously. However, despite the initial facilitation, blocking P receptors by chronic administration of RU486 inhibited the maintenance of behavioral sensitization to EB.

Monday, August 31, 2015
Publication date: September 2015
Source:Hormones and Behavior, Volume 75

Author(s): Adam N. Perry, C. Sue Carter, Bruce S. Cushing

Sex- and species-specific patterns of estrogen receptor (ER)-α expression are established early in development, which may contribute to sexual differentiation of behavior and determine male social organization. The current study investigated the effects of ERα and ERβ activation during the second postnatal week on subsequent alloparental behavior and ERα expression in juvenile prairie voles. Male and female pups were treated daily with 17β-estradiol (E2, ERα/ERβ agonist), PPT (selective ERα agonist), DPN (selective ERβ agonist), or the oil vehicle on postnatal days (PD) 8–14. Alloparental behavior and ERα expression were examined at PD21. PPT treatment inhibited prosocial motivation in males and increased pup-directed aggression in both sexes. E2 and DPN had no apparent effect on behavior in either sex. PPT-treated males had increased ERα expression in the medial preoptic area (MPN), medial amygdala (MEApd) and bed nucleus of the stria terminalis (BSTpr). DPN treatment also increased ERα expression in males, but only in the BSTpr. Female ERα expression was unaffected by treatment. These results support the hypothesis that ERα activation in early life is associated with less prosocial patterns of central ERα expression and alloparental behavior in males. The lack of an effect of E2 on behavior suggests that ERβ may antagonize the effects of ERα on alloparental behavior. The results in DPN-treated males suggest that ERα in the MEApd, and not the BSTpr, may be a primary determinant of alloparental behavior in males.

Monday, August 31, 2015
Publication date: September 2015
Source:Hormones and Behavior, Volume 75

Author(s): Carolyn M. Bauer, Loren D. Hayes, Luis A. Ebensperger, Juan Ramírez-Estrada, Cecilia León, Garrett T. Davis, L. Michael Romero

Maternal stress can significantly affect offspring fitness. In laboratory rodents, chronically stressed mothers provide poor maternal care, resulting in pups with hyperactive stress responses. These hyperactive stress responses are characterized by high glucocorticoid levels in response to stressors plus poor negative feedback, which can ultimately lead to decreased fitness. In degus (Octodon degus) and other plural breeding rodents that exhibit communal care, however, maternal care from multiple females may buffer the negative impact on pups born to less parental mothers. We used wild, free-living degus to test this hypothesis. After parturition, we manipulated maternal stress by implanting cortisol pellets in 0%, 50–75%, or 100% of adult females within each social group. We then sampled pups for baseline and stress-induced cortisol, negative feedback efficacy, and adrenal sensitivity. From groups where all mothers were implanted with cortisol, pups had lower baseline cortisol levels and male pups additionally had weaker negative feedback compared to 0% or 50–75% implanted groups. Contrary to expectations, stress-induced cortisol did not differ between treatment groups. These data suggest that maternal stress impacts some aspects of the pup stress response, potentially through decreased maternal care, but that presence of unstressed mothers may mitigate some of these effects. Therefore, one benefit of plural breeding with communal care may be to buffer post-natal stress.

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