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Hormones and behavioral traits

Hans C Kelstrup, Klaus Hartfelder, Nanike Esterhuizen, Theresa C Wossler
The prevailing paradigm for social wasp endocrinology is that of juvenile hormone (JH) functioning pleiotropically in potential and actual queens, where it fuels dominance behaviors, stimulates ovarian growth and/or affects the production of status-linked cuticular compounds. In colonies with annual cycles (e.g., temperate-zone species), female adults produced at the end of the summer (called gynes) are physiologically primed to hibernate. Despite the absence of egg-laying in the pre-overwintering phase, gynes engage in dominance interactions that may affect reproductive potential following hibernation...
November 29, 2016: Journal of Insect Physiology
Alexandru-Ştefan Niculae, Denis Pavăl
Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) comprises a group of neurodevelopmental disorders for which various theories have been proposed. Each theory brings valuable insights and has experimental evidence backing it, yet none provides an overarching explanation for each of the pathological aspects involved in ASD. Here we present an integrative theory of ASD, centered on a sequence of events spanning from the molecular to the behavioral level. We propose that an abnormality in the interplay between retinoic acid and sex hormones predisposes an individual to specific molecular malfunctions...
December 2016: Medical Hypotheses
Yunyun Cheng, Jiaming Gu, Han Xue, Qiang Li, Mingming Liang, Nan Wang, Gang Wang, Qingyan Wu, Songcai Liu, Hao Yu, Jiabao Zhang, Linlin Hao
Luteinizing hormone beta polypeptide (LHB) gene has been considered important for sexual behavior and has associations with sperm quality. In this study, four SNPs (g.276 T>C, g.377A>C, g.401T>C, and g.412A>G) were detected in the LHB gene of 165 water buffaloes by direct sequencing and identification of overlap peaks, each of which was associated with at least one sperm quality trait of ejaculate volume, sperm concentration, post-thaw sperm motilities, and sperm abnormalities by chi-square analysis...
November 17, 2016: Animal Biotechnology
Angelos Halaris
Morbidity and mortality of cardiovascular disease (CVD) is exceedingly high worldwide. Depressive illness is a serious psychiatric illness that afflicts a significant portion of the world population. Epidemiological studies have confirmed the high co-morbidity between these two disease entities. The co-morbidity is bidirectional and the mechanisms responsible for it are complex and multifaceted. In addition to genetic, biological systems, psychosocial, and behavioral factors that are involved include the central and autonomic nervous systems, the neuroendocrine, immune, and the vascular and hematologic systems...
November 10, 2016: Current Topics in Behavioral Neurosciences
Noah T Ashley, Gregory E Demas
Multidirectional interactions among the immune, endocrine, and nervous systems have been demonstrated in humans and non-human animal models for many decades by the biomedical community, but ecological and evolutionary perspectives are lacking. Neuroendocrine-immune interactions can be conceptualized using a series of feedback loops, which culminate into distinct neuroendocrine-immune phenotypes. Behavior can exert profound influences on these phenotypes, which can in turn reciprocally modulate behavior. For example, the behavioral aspects of reproduction, including courtship, aggression, mate selection and parental behaviors can impinge upon neuroendocrine-immune interactions...
October 17, 2016: Hormones and Behavior
Willow R Lindsay, Douglas G Barron, Michael S Webster, Hubert Schwabl
In males it is frequently testosterone (T) that activates the expression of sexually selected morphological and behavioral displays, but the role of T in regulating similar traits in females is less clear. Here, we combine correlational data with results from T and gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) manipulations in both sexes to assess the role of T in mediating sexually dimorphic coloration and morphology in the red-backed fairy-wren (Malurus melanocephalus). We show that: (1) natural variation in female expression of ornamental traits (darkened bills and red back feathers) is positively associated with age and circulating androgen titres, (2) females have the capacity to express most male-typical traits in response to exogenous T, including carotenoid-pigmented body plumage, shorter feathers, darkened bill and enlarged cloacal protuberance, but (3) appear constrained in production of male-typical melanin-pigmented plumage, and (4) low androgen levels during the pre-nuptial molt, probably because of low ovarian capacity for steroid production (or luteinizing hormone sensitivity), prevent females from developing male-like ornamentation...
October 1, 2016: Journal of Experimental Biology
Patricia C Lopes
Through behavior, animals interact with a world where parasites abound. It is easy to understand how behavioral traits can thus have a differential effect on pathogen exposure. Harder to understand is why we observe behavioral traits to be linked to immune defense traits. Is variation in immune traits a consequence of behavior-induced variation in immunological experiences? Or is variation in behavioral traits a function of immune capabilities? Is our immune system a much bigger driver of personality than anticipated? In this review, I provide examples of how behavioral and immune traits co-vary...
September 22, 2016: Hormones and Behavior
Lucie Rigaill, Andrew J J MacIntosh, James P Higham, Sandra Winters, Keiko Shimizu, Keiko Mouri, Takafumi Suzumura, Takeshi Furuichi, Cécile Garcia
Studies of the role of secondary sexual ornaments in mate choice tend to focus on colorful traits in males, but females of many animal species express colorful ornamentation too. Among non-human primates, investigations into the role of female secondary sexual traits as indicators of life history characteristics, reproductive success, and health status have mostly focused on sexual swellings, whereas only few studies have been conducted on the role of facial color. Recent studies on rhesus macaques and mandrills suggested that female ornamentation might provide information about female life history characteristics, but not on disease resistance factors and parasite infection, which have been shown to affect male ornamentation in some non-primate species...
September 19, 2016: Primates; Journal of Primatology
H H Mohammed, M E Badawi, M S El-Tarabany, M Rania
The present study was done to evaluate the effect of boldenone undecylenate (BOL) on growth performance, maintenance behaviour, reproductive hormones and carcass traits of male rabbits. Sixty apparently healthy New Zealand White male rabbits, 5 weeks of age, were allotted to 3 equal groups. Each group was subdivided into 5 replicates, where the first group is control. The second group (B1) comprised rabbits that received 2 intramuscular injections of BOL (5 mg/kg) with 3 week intervals (9 and 12 weeks of age), while the third group (B2) included rabbits that received 3 intramuscular injections of BOL (5 mg/kg) with 2 week intervals (8, 10 and 12 weeks of age)...
2016: Polish Journal of Veterinary Sciences
Jill B Becker, Brian J Prendergast, Jing W Liang
BACKGROUND: Not including female rats or mice in neuroscience research has been justified due to the variable nature of female data caused by hormonal fluctuations associated with the female reproductive cycle. In this study, we investigated whether female rats are more variable than male rats in scientific reports of neuroscience-related traits. METHODS: PubMed and Web of Science were searched for the period from August 1, 2010, to July 31, 2014, for articles that included both male and female rats and that measured diverse aspects of brain function...
2016: Biology of Sex Differences
Patrizia Gnagnarella, Daniele Dragà, Federica Baggi, Maria Claudia Simoncini, Annarita Sabbatini, Ketti Mazzocco, Fabio Domenico Bassi, Gabriella Pravettoni, Patrick Maisonneuve
BACKGROUND: Most women with breast cancer experience a progressive weight gain during and after treatment. Obesity is associated with an increased risk of recurrence, contralateral breast cancer, and death. Physical activity after cancer diagnosis has been reported to have positive effects on body composition and quality of life. We present the protocol of the InForma study, a trial testing the efficacy of an intervention on weight loss (≥5 % of the baseline body weight) in a group of overweight or obese breast cancer survivors...
July 28, 2016: Trials
Marco Del Giudice
According to models of differential susceptibility, the same neurobiological and temperamental traits that determine increased sensitivity to stress and adversity also confer enhanced responsivity to the positive aspects of the environment. Differential susceptibility models have expanded to include complex developmental processes in which genetic variation interacts with exposure to early environmental factors, such as prenatal stress hormones and family conflict. In this study I employed a simulation approach to explore whether, and under what conditions, developmental models of differential susceptibility are compatible with the cumulative findings from twin studies of personality and behavior, which consistently show sizable effects of genetic and nonshared environmental factors and small to negligible effects of the shared environment...
August 2016: Developmental Psychology
Mikael Mokkonen, Esa Koskela, Tapio Mappes, Suzanne C Mills
Conflict between mates, as well as conflict between parents and offspring are due to divergent evolutionary interests of the interacting individuals. Hormone systems provide genetically based proximate mechanisms for mediating phenotypic adaptation and maladaptation characteristic of evolutionary conflict between individuals. Testosterone (T) is among the most commonly studied hormones in evolutionary biology, and as such, its role in shaping sexually dimorphic behaviors and physiology is relatively well understood, but its role in evolutionary conflict is not as clear...
August 2016: Integrative and Comparative Biology
Alessandra D Nostro, Veronika I Müller, Andrew T Reid, Simon B Eickhoff
Previous studies have shown that males and females differ in personality and gender differences have also been reported in brain structure. However, effects of gender on this "personality-brain" relationship are yet unknown. We therefore investigated if the neural correlates of personality differ between males and females. Whole brain voxel-based morphometry was used to investigate the influence of gender on associations between NEO FFI personality traits and gray matter volume (GMV) in a matched sample of 182 males and 182 females...
July 7, 2016: Cerebral Cortex
Xu Shen, Xue Bai, Jin Xu, Min Zhou, Haipin Xu, Qinghua Nie, Xuemei Lu, Xiquan Zhang
Transition from laying to incubation behavior in chicken is an interesting topic in reproductive biology. The decline of incubation behavior in chicken population has led to considerable phenotypic differences in reproductive traits between breeds. However, the exact genetic mechanism of the reproductive phase transition still largely unknown and little is known about the gene expression changes that contribute to the phenotypic differences. We performed mRNA sequencing to investigate the molecular mechanism underlying the transition from laying to brooding and to detect difference in gene regulation underlying the phenotypic diversification using two chicken breeds...
September 2016: Molecular Biology Reports
Christopher J Schell, Julie K Young, Elizabeth V Lonsdorf, Jill M Mateo, Rachel M Santymire
Hormones are fundamental mediators of personality traits intimately linked with reproductive success. Hence, alterations to endocrine factors may dramatically affect individual behavior that has subsequent fitness consequences. Yet it is unclear how hormonal or behavioral traits change with environmental stressors or over multiple reproductive opportunities, particularly for biparental fauna. To simulate an environmental stressor, we exposed captive coyote (Canis latrans) pairs to novel coyote odor attractants (i...
October 15, 2016: Physiology & Behavior
Joshua B Gross, Amanda K Powers, Erin M Davis, Shane A Kaplan
BACKGROUND: Cave-dwelling animals evolve various traits as a consequence of life in darkness. Constructive traits (e.g., enhanced non-visual sensory systems) presumably arise under strong selective pressures. The mechanism(s) driving regression of features, however, are not well understood. Quantitative trait locus (QTL) analyses in Astyanax mexicanus Pachón cave x surface hybrids revealed phenotypic effects associated with vision and pigmentation loss. Vision QTL were uniformly associated with reductions in the homozygous cave condition, however pigmentation QTL demonstrated mixed phenotypic effects...
2016: BMC Evolutionary Biology
Timothy D Howard, Fang-Chi Hsu, Haiying Chen, Sara A Quandt, Jennifer W Talton, Phillip Summers, Thomas A Arcury
PURPOSE: The occupational risk to farmworkers, particularly chronic exposure to pesticides, is an acknowledged environmental and work-related health problem. Epigenetics has recently been shown to contribute to a number of complex diseases and traits, including measures of cognitive function and preclinical neurodegenerative disease. We sought to determine whether changes in DNA methylation existed between farmworker and non-farmworker populations and to identify the genes most likely involved in those changes...
October 2016: International Archives of Occupational and Environmental Health
Dwayne K Hamson, Meighen M Roes, Liisa A M Galea
Sex differences in neurological disease exist in incidence, severity, progression, and symptoms and may ultimately influence treatment. Cognitive disturbances are frequent in neuropsychiatric disease with men showing greater cognitive impairment in schizophrenia, but women showing more severe dementia and cognitive decline with Alzheimer's disease. Although there are no overall differences in intelligence between the sexes, men, and women demonstrate slight but consistent differences in a number of cognitive domains...
June 13, 2016: Comprehensive Physiology
Tamar Chachua, Paola Di Grazia, Chian-Ru Chern, Meenu Johnkutty, Benjamin Hellman, Ho An Lau, Faariah Shakil, Margaret Daniel, Cezar Goletiani, Jana Velíšková, Libor Velíšek
OBJECTIVE: This study attempted to validate the effects of neonatal estradiol in ameliorating the spasms in the prenatally betamethasone-primed N-methyl-d-aspartate (NMDA) model of infantile spasms in rats as shown previously in a mouse Arx gene knock-in expansion model of infantile spasms. METHODS: Neonatal rats prenatally exposed to betamethasone (on day 15 of pregnancy) were treated with subcutaneous 40 ng/g estradiol benzoate (EB) between postnatal days (P)3-P10 or P0-P5...
August 2016: Epilepsia
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