Neonatal face-to-face interactions promote later social behaviour in infant rhesus monkeys

Dettmer, Amanda M. and Kaburu, Stefano S.K. and Simpson, Elizabeth A. and Paukner, Annika and Sclafani, Valentina and Byers, Kristen L. and Murphy, Ashley M. and Miller, Michelle and Marquez, Neal and Miller, Grace M. and Suomi, Stephen J. and Ferrari, Pier F. (2016) Neonatal face-to-face interactions promote later social behaviour in infant rhesus monkeys. Nature Communications, 7 . ISSN 2041-1723

Full content URL: https://doi.org/10.1038/ncomms11940

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Neonatal face-to-face interactions promote later social behaviour in infant rhesus monkeys

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Abstract

In primates, including humans, mothers engage in face-to-face interactions with their infants, with frequencies varying both within and across species. However, the impact of this variation in face-to-face interactions on infant social development is unclear. Here we report that infant monkeys (Macaca mulatta) who engaged in more neonatal face-to-face interactions with mothers have increased social interactions at 2 and 5 months. In a controlled experiment, we show that this effect is not due to physical contact alone: monkeys randomly assigned to receive additional neonatal face-to-face interactions (mutual gaze and intermittent lip-smacking) with human caregivers display increased social interest at 2 months, compared with monkeys who received only additional handling. These studies suggest that face-to-face interactions from birth promote young primate social interest and competency.

Keywords:intraspecific interaction, neonate, parental care, primate, social behavior, social development, caregiver, case report, controlled clinical trial, female, gaze, human, human versus animal comparison, infant, mother, newborn, randomized controlled trial, rhesus monkey, social interaction, age, animal, animal communication, facial expression, growth, development and aging, male, maternal behavior, psychology, social behavior, Macaca mulatta, Primates, Age Factors, Animals, Animals, Newborn, Humans, Macaca mulatta, Mothers
Subjects:C Biological Sciences > C800 Psychology
C Biological Sciences > C820 Developmental Psychology
Divisions:College of Social Science > School of Psychology
ID Code:34831
Deposited On:14 Mar 2019 16:34

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