Section on Comparative Behavioral Genetics
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NBER Working Papers and Publications
|April 2012||Primate Evidence on the Late Health Effects of Early Life Adversity|
with Gabriella Conti, Christopher Hansman, James J. Heckman, Matthew F. X. Novak, Stephen J. Suomi: w18002
This paper exploits a unique ongoing experiment to analyze the effects of early rearing conditions on physical and mental health in a sample of rhesus monkeys (Macaca mulatta). We analyze the health records of 231 monkeys which were randomly allocated at birth across three rearing conditions: Mother Rearing, Peer Rearing, and Surrogate Peer Rearing. We show that the lack of a secure attachment relationship in the early years engendered by adverse rearing conditions has detrimental long-term effects on health which are not compensated by a normal social environment later in life.
Published: G. Conti & C. Hansman & J. J. Heckman & M. F. X. Novak & A. Ruggiero & S. J. Suomi, 2012. "Primate evidence on the late health effects of early-life adversity," Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, vol 109(23), pages 8866-8871.