Plasma levels of corticosterone, prolactin and thyroxine (T4) were measured in lactating and non-lactating Norway rats at 22°C and 4°C. Acute cold exposure increased corticosterone secretion in all groups, although non-lactating female levels rose higher than those of mother rats. While prolactin levels are unaffected by acute cold exposure in non-lactating females, mothers with their litters had lower prolactin levels in the cold. T4 levels increased during cold exposure in lactating females, suggesting that the low T4 levels observed during lactation may not be due to lactational competition for available iodine.
- Mother-young interactions
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
- Behavioral Neuroscience