Endocrine responses to mother-infant separation in developing rats.

Journal Article (Journal Article)

Separation of neonatal rat pups from the dam have been reported to elicit two endocrine responses in the pup: a fall in growth hormone secretion and a rise in corticosterone secretion. However, the temporal, ontogenetic, and behavioral determinants of these responses have not been compared. In the present study, we report that these two responses can be differentiated on each of these criteria. Growth hormone secretion falls rapidly immediately upon separation of pups from the dam, while robust rises in corticosterone secretion are delayed for many hours. In addition, growth hormone responses are observed earlier in ontogeny. Finally, active maternal behavior is required for normal growth hormone secretion in 10-day-old rat pups, while passive sensory stimuli associated with the dam can significantly reduce the corticosterone response to separation.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Kuhn, CM; Pauk, J; Schanberg, SM

Published Date

  • July 1, 1990

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 23 / 5

Start / End Page

  • 395 - 410

PubMed ID

  • 2253817

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 0012-1630

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1002/dev.420230503


  • eng

Conference Location

  • United States