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Biology of Love


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Love 3

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Biology of Love

  1. 1. The Biology of Love
  2. 2. Learning Outcomes  B6: Using one or more examples, explain the effects of neurotransmission on human behavior.
  3. 3. Love Quotes  Share your quote with your table and explain why you chose it.  Discuss the following questions…  What do our quotes reveal about love? Are there any common themes?  From your own experiences, are these quotes accurate representations of love? Why or why not?  What value does our society place on love?
  4. 4. The Science of Addiction  Key Questions:  What is the function of dopamine in regular behavior?  What role does dopamine play in creating addition?  What important ideas stand out to you about addiction?
  5. 5. The Three Stages of Love  Lust  Romantic Love  Attachment
  6. 6. Lust • The craving for sexual gratification.
  7. 7. Romantic Love • Elation, heightened energy, mood swings, focused attention, craving for emotional union with the beloved, goal orientated behavior, and intense motivation to win the preferred mate.  Increased Dopamine: Goal seeking behavior, increase in energy, sleeplessness, craving, mood swings, etc.  Lowered Serotonin: Obsessive Thinking
  8. 8. Attachment  The connection and feeling of content when in proximity with your partner and anxiety when separated.  Related to Oxytocin (Hormone)
  9. 9. Fisher et al (2003)  Aim: To determine the neurological activity of a person in love.  Method:  Participants: 7 Men, 10 Women. Between the ages of 18-26. Average relationships of 7.4 months.  Placed participants in fMRI Machine  Showed a picture of an acquaintance, asked them to count backwards to clear mind, and then showed picture of their beloved.
  10. 10. Fisher et al (2003) Continued Findings: When looking at the image of their beloved, participants displayed activity in the area of the brain called the VTA. This area is part of the brain’s “reward system,” and is rich in dopamine. Conclusions: Dopamine plays an essential role in shaping the feelings of love. Critical Thinking?
  11. 11. Marazziti et al (1999) Aim: To compare the brain chemistry of a person in love with a person with OCD. Method:  20 Men & Women recently fallen in love.  20 Men & Women with OCD  20 Men & Women as a Control  Took samples of their blood and measured levels of serotonin.
  12. 12. Marazziti et al. (1999) Finding: Men and Women with OCD and those in love had similarly lowered levels of serotonin. Conclusion: Decreased Activity of Serotonin contributes to a lover’s obsessive thinking. Critical Thinking?
  13. 13. Wrap Up: Your Love is My Drug  What does this lesson reveal about Ke$ha’s brain chemistry during this song?  How does this relate to addiction?  What stage of love is Ke$ha experiencing?  What advice would you give to Ke$ha if you were one of her friends?
  14. 14. Bonica’s Intrinsic Assessment Idea
  15. 15. Warm-Up: Taylor Swift  What biological functions are driving T-Swift through this song?  How do the stages of love relate to the color symbolism that Taylor sings about?  To what extent is the comparison between love and addiction accurate? Explain your thinking.
  16. 16. Example #2: Oxytocin  Released by the pituitary gland.  Only exists in mammals.  Acts primarily as a neurotransmitter.  Involved in building bonds, trust, generosity, and social memories.  The coolest hormone ever!
  17. 17. Scheele et al. (2013)  Aim: To determine the role of oxytocin on heterosexual male’s perception of their romantic partners.  Method:  Repeated Measures Design  Treatment: Oxytocin Spray; Control: Placebo  Showed pictures of romantic partners and measured participants’ perceptions of their partners. They also measured brain activity upon seeing the picture using a fMRI.
  18. 18. Scheele et al. (2013) Cont.  Findings:  Oxytocin activated the reward center (VTA) in the brain to a greater extent than the control.  Men on oxytocin generally perceived their partner more attractive than other women.  Oxytocin did not activate the reward system with acquaintances, only romantic partners.  Conclusions: Oxytocin play a key role in shaping monogamy and building bonds between lovers.  Critical Thinking?  Connections to major debates in Psychology?  Connections to other studies?
  19. 19. Feldman et al. (2012)  Hormone: Oxytocin  Aim: To investigate the role of Oxytocin in early relationships in young adults.  Method:  Measured the oxytocin levels of 120 young adults (60 couples of 3 months) and 43 singles.  Measured oxytocin levels of the same participants six months later.
  20. 20. Feldman et al. (2012)  Findings:  Oxytocin levels were higher for the new couples than the single individuals.  High Oxytocin levels at the first test correlated with couples staying together after 6 months.  High Oxytocin predicted more affectionate touch, reciprocity, positive emotions, and worries about the partner and relationship.  Conclusion: Oxytocin plays a key role in the formation of new romantic relationships among young adults.  Critical Thinking?
  21. 21. Ditzen (2013)  Hormone: Oxytocin  Aim: To determine the impact of oxytocin on couples’ communication.  Method: Had couples either spray oxytocin or a placebo up their nose and engage in a high stress conversation.
  22. 22. Ditzen (2013) Continued  Findings:  Oxytocin improved communication and lowered levels of cortisol.  Women: showed less social stress  Men: showed more social stress and were more engaged in the conversation (Eye contact, smiling, etc.)  Conclusions: Oxytocin impacts the ways that couples communicate.  Critical Thinking?
  23. 23. Nakajima et al. (2014)  Aim: To determine the role of oxytocin in female rats interest levels in male rats.  Method: Gave a group of female rats a chemical that blocked the receptor sites of oxytocin in the frontal lobe.  Finding: The females showed almost no interest in males and even showed equal attention to a LEGO block.  Conclusion: Oxytocin is responsible for sexual interest in female rats.  Critical Thinking?