Florida State University

Dr. Zuoxin Wang

Distinguished Research Professor of Psychology & Neuroscience

PDB B343


Selective social attachments, such as adult male-female bonds or parent-infant attachment, are among the most powerful driving forces of human behavior and play an important role for human mental health and development. Our research has been focused on understanding the neurochemical and hormonal mechanisms underlying adult pair bonding behavior using a socially monogamous rodent species, the prairie vole (Microtus ochrogater), as a model system. We have been focusing on several neurochemical systems such as oxytocin, vasopressin, and dopamine and examining their roles and interactions in the regulation of pair bonding behavior. We have also been investigating how these neurochemical systems mediate biobehavioral responses to pair bonding disrupted by factors such as drugs of abuse or stressful experience.
Current Research
Receptor-specific mechanisms underlying dopamine regulation of pair bonding • Neurochemical interactions in the regulation of pair bonding behavior • Social environment and gonadal steroid regulation of adult neurogenesis in voles • Amphetamine, dopamine, and conditioned place preference in voles • Dopamine regulation of social and drug reward interactions.
Recent Publications
Tabbaa M, Lei K, Liu Y, Wang Z, Paternal deprivation affects social behaviors and neurochemical systems in the offspring of socially monogamous prairie voles, Neuroscience, 2017 PubMed
Lei K, Liu Y, Smith AS, Lonstein JS, Wang Z, Effects of pair bonding on parental behavior and dopamine activity in the nucleus accumbens in male prairie voles, Eur J Neurosci, 2017 PubMed
Gobrogge KL, Jia X, Liu Y, Wang Z, Neurochemical Mediation of Affiliation and Aggression Associated With Pair-Bonding, Biol Psychiatry, 2016 PubMed
Tabbaa M, Paedae B, Liu Y, Wang Z, Neuropeptide regulation of social attachment: The prairie vole model, Compr Physiol, 2016 PubMed
Lieberwirth C, Pan Y, Liu Y, Zhang Z, Wang Z, Hippocampal adult neurogenesis: Its regulation and potential role in spatial learning and memory, Brain Res, 2016 PubMed
Lieberwirth C, Wang Z, The neurology of pair bond information, bond disruption, and social buffering, Curr Opin Neurobiol, 2016 PubMed
Gobbrogge K, Wang Z, The ties that bond: neurochemistry of attachment in voles, Curr Opin Neurobiol, 2016 PubMed
Duclot F, Wang H, Youssef C, Liu Y, Wang Z, Kabbaj M, Trichostatin A (TSA) facilitates formation of partner preference in male prairie voles (Microtus ochrogaster), Horm Behav, 2016 PubMed
Pan Y, Liu Y, Lieberwirth C, Zhang Z, Wang Z, Species differences in behavior and cell proliferation/survival in the adult brains of female meadow and prairie voles, Neuroscience, 2016 PubMed
Smith AS, Tabbaa M, Lei K, Eastham P, Butler MJ, Linton L, Altshuler R, Liu Y, Wang Z, Local oxytocin tempers anxiety by activating GABAA receptors in the hypothalamic paraventricular nucleus, Psychoneuroendocrinology, 2016 PubMed
Fukushiro DF, Olivera A, Liu Y, Wang Z, Neonatal exposure to amphetamine alters social affiliation and central dopamine activity in adult male prairie voles, Neuroscience, 2015 PubMed
Young KA, Liu Y, Gobrogge KL, Wang H, Wang Z, Oxytocin reverses amphetamine-induced deficits in social bonding: evidence for an interaction with nucleus accumbens dopamine, J Neurosci, 2014 PubMed
Liu Y, Lieberwirth C, Jia X, Curtis JT, Meredith M, Wang ZX, Chemosensory cues affect amygdaloid neurogenesis and alter behaviors in the socially monogamous prairie vole, Eur J Neurosci, 2014 PubMed
Smith AS, Wang Z, Hypothalamic oxytocin mediates social buffering of the stress response, Biol Psychiatry, 2014 PubMed
Lieberwirth C, Wang Y, Jia X, Liu Y, Wang Z, Fatherhood reduces the survival of adult-generated cells and affects various types of behavior in the prairie vole (Microtus ochrogaster ), Eur J Neurosci, 2013 PubMed
Wang H, Duclot F, Liu Y, Wang Z, Kabbaj M, Histone deacetylase inhibitors facilitate partner preference formation in female prairie voles, Nat Neurosci, 2013 PubMed
Liu Y, Young KA, Curtis JT, Aragona BJ, Wang Z, Social bonding decreases the rewarding properties of amphetamine through a dopamine D1 receptor-mediated mechanism, J Neurosci, 2011 PubMed
Young KA, Gobrogge KL, Liu Y, Wang Z, The neurobiology of pair bonding: insights from a socially monogamous rodent, Front Neuroendocrinol, 2011 PubMed
Young KA, Gobrogge KL, Wang Z, The role of mesocorticolimbic dopamine in regulating interactions between drugs of abuse and social behavior, Neurosci Biobehav Rev, 2011 PubMed
Liu Y, Aragona BJ, Young KA, Dietz DM, Kabbaj M, Mazei-Robison M, Nestler EJ, Wang Z, Nucleus accumbens dopamine mediates amphetamine-induced impairment of social bonding in a monogamous rodent species, Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A, 2010 PubMed
Gobrogge KL, Liu Y, Young LJ, Wang Z, Anterior hypothalamic vasopressin regulates pair-bonding and drug-induced aggression in a monogamous rodent, Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A, 2009 PubMed
Aragona BJ, Wang Z, Opposing regulation of pair bond formation by cAMP signaling within the nucleus accumbens shell, J Neurosci, 2007 PubMed
Curtis JT, Wang Z, Amphetamine effects in microtine rodents: a comparative study using monogamous and promiscuous vole species, Neuroscience, 2007 PubMed
Aragona BJ, Liu Y, Yu YJ, Curtis JT, Detwiler JM, Insel TR, Wang Z, Nucleus accumbens dopamine differentially mediates the formation and maintenance of monogamous pair bonds, Nat Neurosci, 2006 PubMed
Fowler CD, Johnson F, Wang Z, Estrogen regulation of cell proliferation and distribution of estrogen receptor-alpha in the brains of adult female prairie and meadow voles, J Comp Neurol, 2005 PubMed
Lim MM, Wang Z, Olazábal DE, Ren X, Terwilliger EF, Young LJ, Enhanced partner preference in a promiscuous species by manipulating the expression of a single gene, Nature, 2004 PubMed
Young LJ, Wang Z, The neurobiology of pair bonding, Nat Neurosci, 2004 PubMed
Liu Y, Wang ZX, Nucleus accumbens oxytocin and dopamine interact to regulate pair bond formation in female prairie voles, Neuroscience, 2003 PubMed
Fowler CD, Freeman ME, Wang Z, Newly proliferated cells in the adult male amygdala are affected by gonadal steroid hormones, J Neurobiol, 2003 PubMed
Aragona BJ, Liu Y, Curtis JT, Stephan FK, Wang Z, A critical role for nucleus accumbens dopamine in partner-preference formation in male prairie voles, J Neurosci, 2003 PubMed

All Publications PubMed

Lab Website

Neuro Grads and Postdocs

James Brown, Graduate Student

Eileen Chun, Graduate Student

Meghan Donovan, Graduate Student

Yan Liu, Affiliate - Psychology

Gray Platt, Graduate Student

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