Early Life Socialization as Impacting Neurotransmitter Concentration and Aggression
Mallory Peishoff ’22
Faculty Mentor: Dr. Victoria Templer, Psychology
The study of aggression is a widely encompassing and highly applicable area of psychology, with a wide range of involved fields. To develop an understanding of the applications of aggression analysis, its causes must be established. The goal of this study was to develop an understanding of early life socialization as it affects behavioral expressions of aggression, as well as its impact on neurotransmitter concentration. Through a rat model, assigned groups of isolated and socialized rats were subjected to a resident-intruder paradigm. Screening for acts of aggression through the paradigm provided significant indicators that social deprivation at a young age causes an increase in aggression later in life. Wireless Instantaneous Neurotransmitter Concentration systems (WINCS) was applied to measure serotonin and dopamine concentration within subjects. Rats presented with a significantly decreased neurotransmitter concentration in comparison to control baseline results. Combining understanding of the two fronts, evidence suggests that social isolation in early life leads to heightened aggression and deficient neurotransmitter levels in adulthood.
4-29-2021 12:00 AM