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Metabolic and affective consequences of fatherhood in male California mice.

  • Author(s): Zhao, Meng
  • Garland, Theodore
  • Chappell, Mark A
  • Andrew, Jacob R
  • Saltzman, Wendy
  • et al.
Abstract

Physiological and affective condition can be modulated by the social environment and parental state in mammals. However, in species in which males assist with rearing offspring, the metabolic and affective effects of pair bonding and fatherhood on males have rarely been explored. In this study we tested the hypothesis that fathers, like mothers, experience energetic costs as well as behavioral and affective changes (e.g., depression, anxiety) associated with parenthood. We tested this hypothesis in the monogamous, biparental California mouse (Peromyscus californicus). Food intake, blood glucose and lipid levels, blood insulin and leptin levels, body composition, pain sensitivity, and depression-like behavior were compared in males from three reproductive groups: virgin males (VM, housed with another male), non-breeding males (NB, housed with a tubally ligated female), and breeding males (BM, housed with a female and their first litter). We found statistically significant (P<0.007, when modified for Adaptive False Discovery Rate) or nominally significant (0.007

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