The mother-offspring relationship is the key determinant of offspring survival and reproductive success in most mammals, including humans. Understanding the behavioral and proximate means through which matemal behavior Influences offspring success therefore has a long research history but studies are understandably biased towards captive populations. While elegant captive work demonstrates the transmission of maternal behavior and stress physiology across generations, they lack the ful! extent of environmental heterogeneity that is a critical part of the dynamic behavior-physiology-environment axis. This research fills that gap by investigating the interplay between matemal behavior and stress physiology in wild chimpanzees for the first time. In particular, this study integrates an unrivaled 40-year behavioral dataset with new behavioral, physiological, and health data to: 1) investigate the relationship between maternal stress and behavior, 2) investigate the relationship between maternal behavior and offspring health, stress, and development, and 3) test how short-term fitness consequences of maternal behavior act across generations.
These aims will be addressed amorig the chimpanzees at Gombe National Park, the longest, continuous chimpanzee study site in the world. To address these aims, long-term data analysis is paired with new multiple day family follows which include the collection of detailed behavioral data and fecal samples. Fecal samples are used to extract stress hormones, quantify parasite loads, and measure immune function. This approach allows maternal behavior to be linked directly to offspring physiological and health outcomes. The results ofthis study will yield a functional understanding ofthe complex mother-infant relationship and hgw it works across generations;that is, it will parse out which parts ofthe family systern are important in the short-term from those that have long-term consequences for reproductive success. Understanding this in chimpanzees will have direct application to the same topic in humans.

Public Health Relevance

The well-known behavioral and genetic similarities make chimpanzees a particularly excellent human model. Study results will therefore provide valuable and novel results that are relevant for issues that affect human families today, including the vicious cycle of anxiety across generations. It will also inform a positive model for single-parenting;female chimpanzees raise offspring alone without the detriments seen in humans.'

National Institute of Health (NIH)
Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health & Human Development (NICHD)
Research Transition Award (R00)
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Special Emphasis Panel (NSS)
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Freund, Lisa S
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George Washington University
Social Sciences
Schools of Arts and Sciences
United States
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Lonsdorf, Elizabeth V; Gillespie, Thomas R; Wolf, Tiffany M et al. (2018) Socioecological correlates of clinical signs in two communities of wild chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes) at Gombe National Park, Tanzania. Am J Primatol 80:
Terio, Karen A; Lonsdorf, Elizabeth V; Kinsel, Michael J et al. (2018) Oesophagostomiasis in non-human primates of Gombe National Park, Tanzania. Am J Primatol 80:
Stanton, Margaret A; Lonsdorf, Elizabeth V; Pusey, Anne E et al. (2017) Do juveniles help or hinder? Influence of juvenile offspring on maternal behavior and reproductive outcomes in wild chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes). J Hum Evol 111:152-162
Heintz, Matthew R; Murray, Carson M; Markham, A Catherine et al. (2017) The relationship between social play and developmental milestones in wild chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes schweinfurthii). Am J Primatol 79:
Gilby, Ian C; Machanda, Zarin P; O'Malley, Robert C et al. (2017) Predation by female chimpanzees: Toward an understanding of sex differences in meat acquisition in the last common ancestor of Pan and Homo. J Hum Evol 110:82-94
O'Malley, Robert C; Stanton, Margaret A; Gilby, Ian C et al. (2016) Reproductive state and rank influence patterns of meat consumption in wild female chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes schweinfurthii). J Hum Evol 90:16-28
Foerster, Steffen; Franz, Mathias; Murray, Carson M et al. (2016) Chimpanzee females queue but males compete for social status. Sci Rep 6:35404
Bray, Joel; Pusey, Anne E; Gilby, Ian C (2016) Incomplete control and concessions explain mating skew in male chimpanzees. Proc Biol Sci 283:
Gilby, Ian C; Machanda, Zarin P; Mjungu, Deus C et al. (2015) 'Impact hunters' catalyse cooperative hunting in two wild chimpanzee communities. Philos Trans R Soc Lond B Biol Sci 370:20150005
Stanton, Margaret A; Heintz, Matthew R; Lonsdorf, Elizabeth V et al. (2015) Maternal Behavior and Physiological Stress Levels in Wild Chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes schweinfurthii). Int J Primatol 36:473-488

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