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Oxytocin: From milk ejection to maladaptation in stress response and psychiatric disorders




Ann Endocrinol (Paris). 2009 Oct 28. [Epub ahead of print]


Oxytocin: From milk ejection to maladaptation in stress response and psychiatric disorders. A psychoneuroendocrine perspective.


Scantamburlo G, Ansseau M, Geenen V, Legros JJ.

Department of Psychiatry, Psychoneuroendocrinology Unit, CHU of Liège, B35, 4000 Liège, Belgium.



Oxytocin (OT) is implicated in stress reduction as well as in social behavior. It inhibits the stress-induced activity of the hypothalamic-pituitary adrenal axis responsiveness. OT is involved in social affiliation, sexual and maternal-infant binding, anxiety, mood, feeding control and memory. Several lines of evidence suggest a role of OT in psychiatric disorders. Various psychiatric disorders are strongly influenced by social variables, such as panic attacks, depression and early childhood autism, and seem to exhibit a particularly close connection with the brain dynamics that underlie social emotions. This paper proposes an overview of OT in psychiatric disorders through the links with the stress response and prosocial behavior.


PMID: 19878924 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher]




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