Medial hypothalamic involvement in maternal aggression of rats.

Article date: 1989/10/1

PubMed ID: 2803551

Journal name: Behavioral neuroscience (ISSN: 0735-7044)


Extensive electrolytic lesions of the medial hypothalamus, or more restricted ones in its ventral division, decreased maternal aggression in rats operated upon on postpartum Days 2 and 3 and tested with female intruders 4 days later. Maternal aggression was attenuated also in mothers receiving intrahypothalamic infusions with ibotenic acid or parasagittal knife cuts along the lateral border of the ventromedial hypothalamic nucleus; in addition, the females with ibotenate lesions or knife cuts showed impaired lordosis behavior. None of the hypothalamic interventions were associated with deficits in pup retrieval. Lactation was impaired in groups with hypothalamic electrocoagulations but not in mothers with ibotenate lesions or knife cuts. The results suggest that the ventromedial hypothalamus and its lateral connections participate in control of maternal aggression.

Author List: Hansen S

Publication Types: Journal Article; Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

Substances mentioned in the article:

Mesh terms: Aggression/physiology; Animals; Brain Mapping; Dorsomedial Hypothalamic Nucleus/physiology; Female; Hypothalamus, Middle/physiology; Maternal Behavior; Neurons/physiology; Pregnancy; Rats; Rats, Inbred Strains; Sexual Behavior, Animal/physiology; Ventromedial Hypothalamic Nucleus/physiology;

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