Researchers examined the effects oxytocin and vasopressin had on perceptions of social dominance. Oxytocin increased perception of greater dominance. Neuroimaging revealed the findings were also reflected in changes in brain regions associated with social perception.
While empathy may not have a direct effect on prejudice, researchers say it does have an indirect influence via personality and attitude. The study reveals a person with low empathy is more likely to score high on authoritarianism and is indirectly more susceptible to show prejudice.