Publication Date

2014

Abstract

Objective: A growing body of studies consistently demonstrates that social responsiveness toward others is influenced by the neurohormone oxytocin. However, the potential role of oxytocin for self-perception remains relatively unexplored. Thus, we investigated whether oxytocin administration influences the self-attribution of positive and negative adjectives at the early, effortful stage of self-related information processing. Methods: Sixty healthy male participants received either 24 I.U. oxytocin or a placebo in a randomized double-blind study before completing a sorting task, in which they were instructed to co-classify, as fast as possible, positive and negative adjectives into either self or non-self categories. Results: Oxytocin-treated participants reported stronger positive attitudes toward themselves compared to placebo. Conclusions: The present findings demonstrate that oxytocin administration influences the early stage of self-related information processing and suggests that the oxytocinergic system might be involved in psychopathological conditions characterized by a negative representation of self.

Document Type

Journal Article

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