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Oxytocin has ‘Tend-and-Defend’ Functionality in Group Conflict Across Social Vertebrates

Triki, Zegni and Daughters, Katie and De Dreu, Carsten (2021) 'Oxytocin has ‘Tend-and-Defend’ Functionality in Group Conflict Across Social Vertebrates.' Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences. ISSN 0962-8436 (In Press)

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Across vertebrate species, intergroup conflict confronts individuals with a tension between group interests best served by participation in conflict and personal interest best served by not participating. Here, we identify the neurohormone oxytocin as pivotal to the neurobiological regulation of this tension in distinctly different group-living vertebrates, including fish, birds, rodents, non-human primates, and humans. In the context of intergroup conflict, a review of emerging work on pro-sociality suggests that oxytocin and its fish and birds homologs, isotocin and mesotocin, respectively, can elicit participation in group conflict and aggression. This is because it amplifies (i) concern for the interests of genetically related or culturally similar ‘in- group’ others, and (ii) willingness to defend against outside intruders and enemy conspecifics. Across a range of social vertebrates, oxytocin can induce aggressive behaviour to ‘tend-and- defend’ the in-group during intergroup contests.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Parochial Altruism; In-group; Out-group; Neuromodulation; Decision-making; Vertebrates
Divisions: Faculty of Science and Health
Faculty of Science and Health > Psychology, Department of
SWORD Depositor: Elements
Depositing User: Elements
Date Deposited: 13 Dec 2021 14:39
Last Modified: 23 Jun 2022 07:02

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