Dr. Alex Ophir's recent paper in the journal Hormones and Behavior entitled "Oxytocin receptor density is associated with male mating tactics and social monogamy" has been highlighted by the Faculty of 1000 as one of the top published articles in biology and medicine:
"Oxytocin (OT) has been profusely studied in female mammals since its role in maternal behaviors is well known; but its role, functions and mechanisms in males remains unclear. Using prairie voles, an animal model that has been greatly studied due mainly to its social structure (i.e. long term and monogamous pairbonds, and bi-parental care of offspring) which have been linked to OT and OT receptor (OTR) density, researchers investigated the patterns between the distribution of OTR expression in the forebrain and mating tactics and paternity (success in sexual fidelity) in free-living males.
Two of the main findings were that monogamous males expressed higher OTR density in the nucleus accumbens than non-monogamous males and that OTR density in the posterior portion of the insula predicted mating success. These results shed light on the mechanisms of mating systems and they may also help to understand sex-differences in terms of cognitive and social behaviors, giving the chance to open up the discussion about cognitive and behavioral effects of OTR density in different species, including humans."