Scent of father checks daughter’s maturity

Penn State Live This is too strange, but as a father of a daughter it makes me want to hug my daughter more and that’s got to be good. 🙂

Monday, September 11, 2006
Altoona, Pa. — Chemical cues from fathers may be delaying the onset of sexual maturity in daughters, as part of an evolutionary strategy to prevent inbreeding, according to researchers at Penn State.

“Biological fathers send out inhibitory chemical signals to their daughters,” said Robert Matchock, assistant professor of psychology at Penn State Altoona. “In the absence of these signals, girls tend to sexually mature earlier.”

The effect of chemical cues on sexual maturity is common in the animal world, Matchock explained. If the biological father is removed from rodent families, the daughters tend to mature faster, he said.

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