Author(s): Lucas BK, Ormandy CJ, Binart N, Bridges RS, Kelly PA
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Abstract We have studied pup-directed maternal behavior in mice carrying a germ line null mutation of the PRL receptor (PRLR) gene. Homozygous mutant and heterozygous mutant nulliparous females show a deficiency in pup-induced maternal behavior. Moreover, primiparous heterozygous females exhibit a profound deficit in maternal care when challenged with foster pups. Morris maze studies revealed normal configural learning in the heterozygous and homozygous animals. Eating, locomotor activity, sexual behavior, and exploration (all processes regulated by the hypothalamus) are normal in PRLR mutant mice. Olfactory function was tested in an aversive conditioning paradigm, results indicating that heterozygous and homozygous PRLR mutant mice are not anosmic. These studies clearly establish the PRLR as a regulator of maternal behavior.
This article was published in Endocrinology
and referenced in Endocrinology & Metabolic Syndrome