(Reinisch, who is divorced and planning to marry a colleague, psychologist Leonard Rosenblum, does not have a biological child but legally adopted Karen, now 24, when Karen was 21 and chose to live with Reinisch instead of with her parents.)
Study of Reproductive Cycles
Also under way at the institute is a research project on reproductive cycles, one aspect of which is the examination of social and physiological aspects of "menstrual synchrony," the observation that, among women who spend a great deal of time together, menstrual periods of some shift so that the periods of all begin to coincide.
This is, Reinisch said, "very common" and there is evidence that a pheromone, a natural chemical released in perspiration and transmitted in the air, may be responsible. When the essence of this chemical was applied to the skin of a study group of women, she said, within four months all began cycling within three days of one another.
The questions raised, she said, include, "Who are the leaders? Who are the followers? Is ovulation affected by this?" What are the factors that determine an individual woman's propensity to set the menstrual pattern or, conversely, to follow another woman's pattern?