June 17th, 2004 - Open Knowledge
Jun. 17th, 2004
08:42 pm - Swinging Voles
Swingers may be slaves to genes
Scientists find promiscuous voles lack key brain function linked to monogamy
Alan Zarembo, Los Angeles Times
Scientists working with a ratlike animal called a vole have found that promiscuous males can be reprogrammed into monogamous partners by introducing a single gene into a specific part of their brains.
Once they have been converted, the voles hang around the family nests and even huddle with their female partners after sex.
"A mutation in a single gene can have a profound impact on complex social behavior," said Larry Young, a neuroscientist at Emory University who reported the results in the current issue of the journal Nature.
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