Corticosterone Assimilation by a Voluntary Oral Administration in Palatable Food to Rats

Drug delivery in research on nonhuman animals in the laboratory is still challenging because it is usually invasive and stressful. Stress-free voluntary oral drug administration in water lacks precise control of dose and timing of substance ingestion. Voluntary oral consumption of corticosterone has been previously successfully applied in mice using oat flakes, but protocols for […]

A Case Study: Fecal Corticosteroid and Behavior as Indicators of Welfare During Relocation of an Asian Elephant

This study was a preliminary investigation of an enzyme immunoassay for measuring fecal glucocorticoid metabolites in a male Asian elephant (Elephas maximus) by investigating changes in behavior and cortisol metabolite excretion associated with a putative stressful event. The study collected fecal samples for 10 days prior to, and 10 days after, 24-hr transport and relocation […]

Use of fecal glucocorticoid metabolite measures in conservation biology research: considerations for application and interpretation

Fecal glucocorticoid metabolite analyses are increasingly being used by a variety of scientists (e.g., conservation biologists, animal scientists) to examine glucocorticoid (i.e., stress hormone) secretion in domestic and wild vertebrates. Adrenocortical activity (i.e., stress response) is of interest to conservation biologists because stress can alter animal behavior, reduce resistance to disease, and affect population performance. […]

A safer method for studying hormone metabolism in an Asian elephant (Elephas maximus): accelerator mass spectrometry

Abstract Noninvasive hormone assays provide a way to determine an animal’s health or reproductive status without the need for physical or chemical restraint, both of which create unnecessary stress for the animal, and can potentially alter the hormones being measured. Because hormone metabolism is highly species-specific, each assay must be validated for use in the […]

Predicting reproduction in captive sea otters (Enhydra lutris)

Abstract 10.1002/zoo.20020.abs The sea otter (Enhydra lutris) is a threatened species. It is also a popular exhibit animal in many zoos and aquariums worldwide. Unfortunately, sea otters reproduce successfully in only a small number of facilities. Pregnancies vary in duration, and are thought to involve a delayed implantation of about 2–3 months, followed by an […]

Measurement of fecal steroids in the black rhinoceros (Diceros bicornis) using group-specific enzyme immunoassays for 20-oxo-pregnanes

Abstract 10.1002/(SICI)1098-2361(1996)15:23.3.CO;2-3 The metabolism and excretion of progesterone in different animal species results in several fecal 5-reduced progesterone metabolites (pregnanes), which in recent studies were quantified using progesterone antibodies. To increase the accuracy of fecal 20-oxo-pregnane evaluations in the black rhinoceros, enzyme immunoassays (EIA) using antibodies against 5α-pregnane-3β-ol-20-one 3HS:BSA (5α-20-one EIA) and 5β-pregnane-3α-ol-20-one 3HS:BSA (5β-20-one […]

Noninvasive Monitoring of Hormones in Bird Droppings: Physiological Validation, Sampling, Extraction, Sex Differences, and the Influence of Diet on Hormone Metabolite Levels

During the past several years, the noninvasive measurement of steroid metabolites from mammalian feces and bird droppings has become more and more popular. With an increasing acceptance of the method, investigators may become less aware of the need to validate their assays. It is shown why such validations are essential for each new species investigated […]