Scientists Discover A New “Friendship” Molecule

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In a story published today on the site Science Daily we learned that a new research suggests that “a molecule involved in regulating stress in the brain may also help determine how willing we are to leave the safety of our social group and strike up new relationships“.

Unlike the the love hormone, also known as Oxytocin, which helps create strong emotional bonds between individuals, it seems this new molecule would play a role in helping us break out of social comfort zone and form new relationships outside of our peers.

As research and development unfolds in the future for this new molecule called Urocortin-3 , there is hope that this discovery could help millions of people who suffer from different types of isolation, depression or social anxiety.

Mice with high levels of Urocortin-3 in the brain actively sought out contacts with new mice behind the mesh, even ignoring their own group. But when the activity of Urocortin-3 and its receptor was blocked in their brains, the mice chose to socialize mainly within the group, avoiding contact with the strangers

For more information on the study behind this story or to read the original source, click here to be taken to the Science Daily site.

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Ben Baker is the communication officer and content editor for the team here at Science of Zen. His interest in personal growth topics range from mindfulness, meditation, neuroscience, performance psychology and natural health.