Tel Aviv researchers reveal that exposure to ultraviolent radiation via sunlight increases feelings of romantic passion – in men and women
Sunlight has been known to have a significant role in the way the brain handles depression. Recent breakthroughs in neurology found that the human brain can be changed just by taking regular walks, or shaped by the recently unearthed “grandmother neuron.”
According to the new research, exposure to sunlight definitively increased romantic passion in men and women. There is no understanding of how sunlight impacted the romantic passions of other genders at this moment.
The study was led by PhD student Roma Parikh and Ashchar Sorek from the laboratory of Professor Carmit Levy at the Department of Human Molecular Genetics and Biochemistry at the Sackler Faculty of Medicine.
Professor Levy said: “It has been known for many years now that ultraviolet radiation from sunlight increases testosterone levels in males, and we also know that sunlight plays a major role in both the behavioral and hormonal regulation of sexuality. However, the mechanism responsible for this regulation remained unknown. Our study enabled a better understanding of this mechanism.”
How did the scientists measure romantic passion?
The scientists combined blood tests with questionnaires about feelings of romantic passion and aggression.
Professor Levy: “The skin contains various mechanisms for dealing with radiation from sunlight, and one of these is the p53 protein. We must remember that exposure to UV is dangerous, and can damage the DNA, as in the case of skin cancer. At the same time, two built-in programs in the skin, activated following exposure to sunlight, are in place to protect against DNA damage: the DNA repair system and pigmentation, namely the suntan, based on degree of exposure.
“By activating both systems, the p53 protein regulates the level of DNA damage. In our study we found that the same system also activates the endocrine system of sexuality and potentially breeding.”