Physiological Consequences of Maternal Separation and Loss in the Squirrel Monkey

  • Christopher L. Coe
  • Sandra G. Wiener
  • Leon T. Rosenberg
  • Seymour Levine


As the chapters in this volume indicate, the squirrel monkey has been a valuable subject in many areas of research. One area in which the squirrel monkey has been particularly popular is in the investigation of developmental issues. Our laboratory has found it to be the subject of choice for two reasons. First, the specificity and duration of the emotional bond between mother and infant make the squirrel monkey a good model for the study of attachment processes. Second, the resiliency of the infant and its high adrenocortical hormone levels are extremely conducive to experiments on the effects of psychological and environmental perturbations that occur early in life. Here we will review a series of studies on the physiological consequences of maternal separation in infant squirrel monkeys, and also discuss some of the factors that can ameliorate the deleterious hormonal and immunological effects of maternal loss.


Home Cage Squirrel Monkey Cortisol Response Maternal Separation Adrenal Response 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1985

Authors and Affiliations

  • Christopher L. Coe
    • 1
  • Sandra G. Wiener
    • 1
  • Leon T. Rosenberg
    • 2
  • Seymour Levine
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral SciencesStanford University School of MedicineStanfordUSA
  2. 2.Department of Medical MicrobiologyStanford University School of MedicineStanfordUSA

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