B6: Using one or more examples, explain
the effects of neurotransmission on human
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
What value does our society place on love?
The Science of Addiction
What is the function of dopamine in regular
What role does dopamine play in creating
What important ideas stand out to you
The Three Stages of 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
The connection and feeling of content
when in proximity with your partner and
anxiety when separated.
Related to Oxytocin (Hormone)
Fisher et al (2003)
Aim: To determine the neurological
activity of a person in love.
Participants: 7 Men, 10 Women. Between
the ages of 18-26. Average relationships of
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
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
Marazziti et al (1999)
Aim: To compare the brain
chemistry of a person in love with a
person with OCD.
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.
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
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?
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.
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!
Scheele et al. (2013)
Aim: To determine the role of oxytocin on
heterosexual male’s perception of their
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
Scheele et al. (2013) Cont.
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
Connections to major debates in Psychology?
Connections to other studies?
Feldman et al. (2012)
Aim: To investigate the role of Oxytocin in
early relationships in young adults.
Measured the oxytocin levels of 120 young
adults (60 couples of 3 months) and 43
Measured oxytocin levels of the same
participants six months later.
Feldman et al. (2012)
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.
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.
Ditzen (2013) Continued
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.
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.