London: A nasal spray made of the hormone vasopressin can help boost men’s ability to recognise the emotions of both happy and angry, say scientists.
However, the spray doesn’t improve males’ ability to detect emotions of the neutral, reports New Scientist.
Just like ‘cuddle chemical’ oxytocin improves bonding, vasopressin too drives less cosy aspects of social behaviour, such as aggression.
In their study, Adam Guastella at the University of Sydney in Australia compared the ability of 24 men given the spray to recognise neutral, angry and happy faces with peers given a placebo spray.
The study has been published in Biological Psychiatry.
"There may be an application in people with inadequate recognition of social cues," Guastella says.