Friday, January 03, 2003

Sex makes your brain grow Globe and Mail,
POSTED AT 9:21 PM EST, Thursday, January 2 2002 " Mating triggers the development of new neurons in the smell centre of the brain, a finding researchers hope will provide clues on how to trick other parts of the vital organ to repair themselves after injuries caused by strokes or head traumas.

The possibility hinges on the discovery that a naturally occurring hormone called prolactin - production of which surges after sex and during pregnancy - prompts stem cells in the brain to produce new neurons in the brain's olfactory bulb.

"The importance of it, beyond the basic biology of stem cells, is the fact that prolactin may be an important neurogenic molecule that may have significant potential for generating new brain cells," said Samuel Weiss, an expert in neurological stem cell biology in the University of Calgary's faculty of medicine...." [Sex releases prolactin? Who knew... - JC]

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