Androgens enhance plasticity of an electric communication signal in female knifefish, Brachyhypopomus pinnicaudatus

Hormones and Behavior
Susan AlleePhilip K Stoddard

Abstract

Sex steroids were initially defined by their actions shaping sexually dimorphic behavioral patterns. More recently scientists have begun exploring the role of steroids in determining sex differences in behavioral plasticity. We investigated the role of androgens in potentiating circadian, pharmacological, and socially-induced plasticity in the amplitude and duration of electric organ discharges (EODs) of female gymnotiform fish. We first challenged female fish with injections of serotonin (5-HT) and adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH), and with social encounters with female and male conspecifics to characterize females' pre-implant responses to each treatment. Each individual was then implanted with a pellet containing dihydrotestosterone (DHT) concentrations of 0.0, 0.03, 0.1, 0.3, or 1.0 mg 10 g(-1) body weight. We then repeated all challenges and compared each female's pre- and post-implant responses. The highest implant dose enhanced EOD duration modulations in response to all challenge types, responses to male challenge were also greater at the second highest dose, and responses to ACTH challenge were enhanced in females receiving all but the smallest dose (and blank) implants. Alternatively, amplitude modulations were enha...Continue Reading

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Citations

Dec 24, 2010·The Journal of Experimental Biology·Philip K Stoddard, Vielka L Salazar
Jun 6, 2012·Animal Behaviour·Sat GavassaPhilip K Stoddard
Oct 23, 2016·Journal of Physiology, Paris·William R PitchersJason R Gallant
Feb 8, 2019·Journal of Fish Biology·William G R Crampton
Apr 13, 2013·Journal of Comparative Physiology. A, Neuroethology, Sensory, Neural, and Behavioral Physiology·Sat GavassaPhilip K Stoddard
Sep 5, 2019·Frontiers in Integrative Neuroscience·Michael G Metzen
Jun 14, 2013·The Journal of Experimental Biology·Sat GavassaPhilip K Stoddard
Jun 14, 2013·The Journal of Experimental Biology·Michael R Markham

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