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Region Hovedstaden - en del af Københavns Universitetshospital

Diurnal variation of salivary oxytocin concentrations in humans

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Intro: The objective of this study is to evaluate oxytocin as a biomarker of child and parent behaviors involved in the process of family accommodation within pediatric obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD). TECTO is a pragmatic trial conducted in a real-world clinic, thus the timing of saliva sampling must accommodate participating families’ schedules. This means that at baseline, participants will provide saliva in the morning while at other timepoints participants may provide saliva in the afternoon. Previous studies have sampled oxytocin in the afternoon to minimize effects of diurnal changes on oxytocin reactivity, a precedent set by Feldman et al. However, this precedent is based on research with non-human primates. A study of 16 pregnant women found that plasma oxytocin levels decrease over the course of the day, and night time levels exceed morning values by 30%. In 11 breastfeeding women, salivary oxytocin levels taken at different times of the day showed no differences. Whether salivary oxytocin levels fluctuate over the course of the day in children or adults who are neither pregnant nor breastfeeding is not known. Thus, we will test for differences in oxytocin levels among five timepoints in a sample of 30 healthy adults and 20 healthy children from the community. Methods: Saliva will be collected from patients, controls and their parents at baseline and the end of treatment. Saliva will also be collected from patients and their parents at mid-treatment and 6-month follow-up. Oxytocin concentrations will be measured using immunoassay with Enzo® (NY, USA) oxytocin kits. Results (expected): The findings of the project will be published in a series of papers in major international journals of high quality. Discussion/impact (expected): If we find differences as a function of time of day, we will adjust for this in our analyses of oxytocin in the TECTO trial.

ID: 62375872