The Science of Love

Cupid’s Chemicals - The Science of Love

Valentine’s Day is a celebration of one of the strongest of human emotions, romantic love. The visible signs of love can be obvious to spot, from a racing pulse to flushed cheeks, but it appears that Cupid is not working alone.

According to one of the best-known researchers on the topic, Dr. Helen Fisher, Senior Research Fellow, at The Kinsey Institute, Indiana University, and a Member of the Center For Human Evolutionary Studies in the Department of Anthropology at Rutgers University, when it comes to love, we are at the mercy of our biochemistry.  Fisher concludes that each of the three stages of falling in love are aided by different set of hormones.

We investigate each stage in Scopus and SciVal to see the people, papers and journals behind the ‘Science of Love.’ #CupidsChemicals


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Stage #1 - Lust

Chemicals: Testostorone and Estrogen

Stage 1 icons

SciVal

We analyzed Testotorone AND Estrogen which contrary to popular belief, are two hormones equally present in men and women! Output: 1,946 (2010-2015)

Lust SciVal graphic

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The United States produces over one third of this research, with a slightly lower amount of international collaboration than their 5 year average of 29.8%.

Top keyphrases: Testosterone, Estrogen, Estradiol

Scopus

We did a search for:

(TITLE-ABS-KEY (testosterone) AND (estrogen))

AND (lust)

... and one of the most highly cited review articles with 92 citations is “The neurobiology of pair bonding: Insights from a socially monogamous rodent” by Young, K.A., Gobrogge, K.L., Liu, Y., Wang, Z. from the journal Frontiers in Neuroendocrinology.

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Stage #2 - Attraction

Chemicals: Dopamine, Adrenaline, Serotonin

Stage 2 icons

SciVal

We analyzed Serotonin which diverts your mind and makes you think about your lover and nothing else! Output: 20,481 (2010-2015)

Attraction SciVal graphic

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Imperial College of London has the highest global Field Weighted Citation Impact in Serotonin research.

Top keyphrases: Serotonin Plasma Membrane Transport Proteins, Serotonin Uptake Inhibitors, Antidepressive Agents

Scopus

When looking at people who research love, we took a further look at Dr. Helen Fisher via her Scopus author profile.

Her most recent article is “Mating markets and bargaining hands: Mate preferences for attractiveness and resources in two national U.S. studies” and it says that, “According to a ‘mating market’ approach, people with desirable traits have a stronger “bargaining hand” and can be more selective when choosing partners.”

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Stage #3 - Attachment

Chemicals: Oxytocin and Vasopressin

Stage 3 icons

SciVal

We analyzed Oxytocin (also known as “the cuddle hormone”) – Output: 4,491 (2010 – 2015)

Analysis of Oxytocin

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Bar-llan University, Israel has the most viewed research in the field in Oxytocin. Perhaps a rising star in the area of paternal behavior.

Top keyphrases: Parenting, Object Attachment, Maternal Behavior

Scopus

When doing a search for:

(TITLE-ABS-KEY (oxytocin) AND TITLE-ABS-KEY (hormone) AND TITLE-ABS-KEY (love))

... it’s interesting to note that Nature has an article with the most citations 1,408 for the article, “Oxytocin increases trust in humans” by Kosfeld, M., Heinrichs, M., Zak, P.J., Fischbacher, U., Fehr, E. It also shows a significant amount of other article-level metrics like Mendeley Readers, Tweets and 15 Mass Media Stories.

Attachment Scopus graphic

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Stage #4 - Love

Chemicals: All of the above!

Stage 4 icons

SciVal

We analyzed Love – Output: 18,329 (2010 – 2015)

Love graphic

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France is knocked from the top 5 by China, although 30% of their research is engineering focused (Love waves)

Top keyphrases: God, Women, Family

Cupid’s Chemicals - The Science of Love

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All data taken from SciVal and Scopus on Feb 10, 2016


Want to learn more about the papers (Scopus) or metrics (SciVal) on love but don’t have access to the tools?

Request a consultation