February is the month of love... or maybe it's more lust. But whatever gets you going, take heart that there is something being developed that may smooth the path of love for any would-be lotharios. According to the Telegraph newspaper, a love spray being developed by United States scientists.
Part aromatherapy, part pure science, scientists are studying the brain chemistry responsible for the complex feelings that draw us to a particular person. The article says, in part:
Animal testing is beginning to shed light on the complex neural and genetic components of love in the same way they have led to pharmaceutical therapies for anxiety, phobias and post-traumatic stress disorders. Drugs that manipulate brain systems to enhance or diminish our love for another may not be far away.
Experiments have already shown a nasal squirt of the hormone oxytocin enhances trust and tunes people into others' emotions. Studies are under way in Australia to determine whether an oxytocin spray might aid marital therapy. The hormone interacts with the reward and reinforcement system driven by the neuro-transmitter dopamine – the same circuitry that drugs such as nicotine, cocaine and heroine act on in humans to produce euphoria and addiction. Dopamine-related reward regions of the human brain are active in mothers viewing images of their child. Similar activation patterns are seen in people looking at photographs of their lovers.
So maybe you want to send your love interest a special bouquet this Valentine's Day? Ah if only florists could develop a flower that gives off the scent of oxytocin! While we wait for the scientists, here is an array of other love potions.