Evolution of a novel adrenal cell type that promotes parental care. (https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/38750354/)

These scientists wanted to understand how a special type of cell in the adrenal gland of a monogamous mouse helps them behave in a certain way. They found that this type of cell in the monogamous oldfield mouse can change a hormone called progesterone into a different form called 20alpha-hydroxyprogesterone. This new form of hormone is more common in monogamous mice and helps them show caring behaviors towards their babies.

To figure out why this happens, the scientists compared the monogamous oldfield mouse to a similar but promiscuous deer mouse. They discovered that there are certain genetic differences between the two types of mice that affect the production of specific proteins in the new cell type of the oldfield mouse. These proteins help the cell do its job and influence the behavior of the mouse.

In simple terms, the scientists found that a special type of cell in the adrenal gland of the monogamous mouse plays a big role in making them act lovingly towards their young ones, and this is linked to specific genes and proteins in their bodies.

Niepoth N., Merritt JR., Uminski M., Lei E., Esquibies VS., Bando IB., Hernandez K., Gebhardt C., Wacker SA., Lutzu S., Poudel A., Soma KK., Rudolph S., Bendesky A. Evolution of a novel adrenal cell type that promotes parental care. Nature. 2024 May 15. doi: 10.1038/s41586-024-07423-y.

ichini | 3 weeks ago | 0 comments | Reply