Home » Volume 17, Number 3 » Researchers Present at IASR

Researchers Present at IASR

The International Academy of Sex Research Annual meeting was held in Chicago, Illinois August 7-10. Kinsey Institute researchers presented on a wide range of new findings.

Rebecca Gregory, doctoral student in the Department of Psychological and Brain Science at Indiana University under Dr. Julia Heiman, received the award for the Best Junior Poster. Her poster was one of 126 presented at the conference.

The project Gregory worked on addressed mechanisms that might help to explain what goes on in the postpartum brain to influence new mothers' lack of attention to sexual cues, and greater attention to infant cues. She analyzed the effects of the hormone oxytocin on both mother-infant interactions, including breastfeeding and bonding, and sexual responses. Women who were postpartum and women without children were both given oxytocin nasal spray, and their brain reactions (activation) to sexual and infant stimuli were obversed through fMRI (functional MRI). The VTA, known as a reward center of the brain, was activated by the oxytocin in both sets of women.

"Our findings show that reward areas in the postpartum brain respond differently to similar yet affectively distinct infant image types and that oxytocin increases activation of the VTA...in response to sexual and infant stimuli."

The project is funded by National Institutes of Health, and is part of Dr. Heiman's research examining the role of oxytocin in the postpartum period.

Oxytocin Increases VTA Activation to Infant and Sexual Stimuli in Nulliparous and Postpartum Women
Gregory, R., Cheng, H., Rupp, R. A., Sengelaub, D., & Heiman, J. R.

Other presentations at IASR included:

Testing The Kinsey Institute Homework Intervention Strategy (KIHIS) Among Men Who Have Sex with Men Emetu, R. E., Marshall, A., Sanders, S., Crosby, R. A., Graham, C. A., Milhausen, R. R., & Yarber, W. L.
The effect of condoms on penile vibrotactile sensitivity thresholds in young, heterosexual men. Hill, BJ, Janssen, E, Kvam, P, Amick, EE, Sanders, SA
Sexual inhibition and sexual excitation in men with and without erectile dysfunction. Quinta Gomes, A. L., Janssen, E., Adaikan, G., & Nobre, P.J..
Orgasm Experiences Among Emerging Adult Men and Women: Relationship Context, Gender, and Attitudes Toward Uncommitted Sexual Activity. 
Garcia, J. R., Massey, S. G., Merriwether, A. M., & Seibold-Simpson, S. M.
Women’s Condom Use Intentions: The Moderating Effects of Alcohol and Condom Use Self-Efficacy George, W.H., Davis, K. C., Masters, N. T., Eakins, D., Danube, C. L., Norris, J., & Heiman (with U. of Washington)


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