The Effects of Anosmia on AVP Regulation of Parental Behavior and Aggression in Peromyscus Californicus

Date of Award


Document Type

Honors Project

University Scholars Director

Dr. Jeff Keuss

First Advisor/Committee Member

Janet Bester-Meredith, Ph.D.

Second Advisor/Committee Member

Cynthia Bishop, D.V.M.


Arginine vasopressin, mice, California mouse, olfaction, zinc gluconate


Arginine vasopressin (AVP) is a neuropeptide that has been linked to various social behaviors known to be vital for the survival of individuals in social species. Peromyscus californicus is a monogamous, biparental species that uses AVP and olfaction to interpret and respond to social cues. After impairment of olfaction with zinc gluconate, male mice showed a decrease in aggressive behavior, but neither sex changed the incidence or frequency of parental behavior. Future research will allow us to view the changes in immunohistochemistry staining to observe anosmia’s effect on the production of AVP in the brain.


A project submitted in partial fulfillment of the requirements of the University Scholars Program.

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