How would that work? Feldman thinks that these types of behaviors are intimately linked with oxytocin in a positive feedback loop. “Oxytocin can elicit loving behaviors, but giving and receiving these behaviors also promotes the release of oxytocin and leads to more of these behaviors,” she says. She thinks that talk therapy alone can boost the oxytocin system, but admits that in some cases it might help to jump-start the feedback loop by administering oxytocin. If Guastella’s results support his hypothesis, talk and hormone therapy together might be the best recipe for breaking down dysfunctional communication between partners, especially in cases where the behaviors have been learned in childhood.
Serotonin syndrome (Serotonin toxicity) is caused by an excess of serotonin in the brain. It is most often caused by taking more than one Serotonin-enhancing substance at the same time, such as 5-HTP and an antidepressant medication. Symptoms range in severity according to the level of intoxication and may include increased heart rate, tremor, sweating, mental agitation, seizures, shock, organ failure and death (9).
Before the treatment, the female mice were largely indifferent to the cries of a distressed baby, and were even known to trample over them. But after an injection of oxytocin, the mice started to respond more like mothers, picking up the mewling pup in their mouths. Froemke, a neuroscientist at New York University's Langone Medical Center in New York City, was monitoring the animals' brains to find out why that happened.
In humans, 5-HTP is the nutrient precursor to the neurotransmitter serotonin – widely known as the 'happy neurotransmitter' – meaning 5-HTP converts directly into serotonin in the brain. As well as being in our bodies, it's found naturally in the seeds of a woody shrub native to West Africa. By taking it as a supplement, in theory, you will end up with more serotonin in your brain. Serotonin deficiency is linked to depression, anxiety and a whole host of physical and mental ailments. Raising its levels seems to help brain cells send and receive chemical messages, which in turn boosts mood.
Both sexes secrete oxytocin - what about its role in males? Males synthesize oxytocin in the same regions of the hypothalamus as in females, and also within the testes and perhaps other reproductive tissues. Pulses of oxytocin can be detected during ejaculation. Current evidence suggests that oxytocin is involved in facilitating sperm transport within the male reproductive system and perhaps also in the female, due to its presence in seminal fluid. It may also have effects on some aspects of male sexual behavior.

This article is authored by a PhD Candidate and her supervisory team at University of Queensland, and reflects the interests of the student’s doctoral project in undertaking the nation’s first qualitative study into experiences of Melanotan use among the general population. Dubbed ‘Project Melanotan’, the investigation aims to directly engage with ‘melanotanners’ in a non-judgemental environment, in an effort to both critically evaluate as well as understand lived experiences of melanotaning as they relate to conceptually relevant notions of risk, technology and the body.
What is serotonin and what does it do? Serotonin is a chemical that transmits messages between nerve cells. Known as the happy chemical, serotonin plays a major role in the body by contributing to well-being, good mood, appetite, memory, and sleep. This article looks at what happens when a person is deficient in serotonin, and whether it can aid depression. Read now
The sequence LKKTET, which starts at residue 17 of the 43-aminoacid sequence of thymosin beta-4, and is strongly conserved between all β-thymosins, together with a similar sequence in WH2 domains, is frequently referred to as "the actin-binding motif" of these proteins, although modelling based on X-ray crystallography has shown that essentially the entire length of the β-thymosin sequence interacts with actin in the actin-thymosin complex.[13]

Despite this, Tβ4’s place on the banned-substances list is warranted. It reflects the possibility that the effects of the supplement may manifest as a tangible improvement in athletes. However, any time a journalist flippantly declares it “heals damaged tissue and speeds recovery”, it should be noted that such claims are a harmful distortion of the facts.
An estimated 1.4 million people sustain traumatic brain injury (TBI) each year in the United States, and more than 5 million people are coping with disabilities from TBI at an annual cost of more than $56 billion.1 There are no commercially-available pharmacological treatment options available for TBI because all clinical trial strategies have failed.2,3 The disappointing clinical trial results may be due to variability in treatment approaches and heterogeneity of the population of TBI patients.4-9 Another important aspect is that most clinical trial strategies have used drugs that target a single pathophysiological mechanism, although many mechanisms are involved in secondary injury after TBI.4 Neuroprotection approaches have historically been dominated by targeting neuron-based injury mechanisms as the primary or even exclusive focus of the neuroprotective strategy.3 In the vast majority of preclinical studies, the treatment compounds are administered early and, frequently, even before TBI.10,11 Clinically, the administration of a compound early may be problematic because of the difficulty in obtaining informed consent.12
The logic behind this trend is that creating tanned skin (by increasing melanin) with minimal to no sun exposure could protect individuals from skin damage, and even potentially lower melanoma risk. More melanin means more protection from UV radiation, and therefore a healthier (and conveniently, deeper) complexion. In this sense, there is perhaps a kernel of truth to the idea of the “healthy glow”.
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Angiogenesis is an essential step in the repair process that occurs after injury. In this study, we investigated whether the angiogenic thymic peptide thymosin beta4 (Tbeta4) enhanced wound healing in a rat full thickness wound model. Addition of Tbeta4 topically or intraperitoneally increased reepithelialization by 42% over saline controls at 4 d and by as much as 61% at 7 d post-wounding. Treated wounds also contracted at least 11% more than controls by day 7. Increased collagen deposition and angiogenesis were observed in the treated wounds. We also found that Tbeta4 stimulated keratinocyte migration in the Boyden chamber assay. After 4-5 h, migration was stimulated 2-3-fold over migration with medium alone when as little as 10 pg of Tbeta4 was added to the assay. These results suggest that Tbeta4 is a potent wound healing factor with multiple activities that may be useful in the clinic.
Johansson, A., Westberg, L., Sandnabba, K., Jern, P., Salo, B., & Santtila, P. (2012). Associations between oxytocin receptor gene (OXTR) polymorphisms and self-reported aggressive behavior and anger: Interactions with alcohol consumption [Abstract]. Psychoneuroendocrinology 37(9), 1546-56. Retrieved from

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In addition to its intracellular role as the major actin-sequestering molecule in cells of many multicellular animals, thymosin β4 shows a remarkably diverse range of effects when present in the fluid surrounding animal tissue cells. Taken together, these effects suggest that thymosin has a general role in tissue regeneration. This has suggested a variety of possible therapeutic applications, and several have now been extended to animal models and human clinical trials.
Froemke's and Tsien's work fits into a broader theory: that one way oxytocin helps social interaction and recognition is by enhancing the brain's response to socially relevant sights, sounds or other stimuli. Young has shown that the hormone helps mice to recognize and pay attention to the smells of other mice7; others found that it promotes people's ability to recognize faces8.
The short half-life (<2h)[16] of 5-HTP may inherently limit the therapeutic potential of 5-HTP,[17] as the systemic 5-HTP exposure levels will fluctuate substantially, even with relatively frequent dosing. Such exposure fluctuations are usually associated with increased adverse event burden, resulting from Cmax drug spikes, and decreased clinical efficacy resulting from sub-therapeutic exposure for large parts of the day. It has been proposed that 5-HTP dosage forms achieving prolonged delivery would be more effective,[17] as is generally the situation with short-acting active pharmaceutical ingredients.[18]