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Horm Behav. 2002 Sep;42(2):109-15.

Methyl-testosterone induces male-typical ventilatory behavior in response to putative steroidal pheromones in female round gobies (Neogobius melanostomus).

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  • 1Department of Biological Sciences, University of Alberta, Edmonton, Alberta, Canada T6G 2E9. cmurph4@lsu.edu


Male round gobies (Neogobius melanostomus) transiently increase their rate of ventilation when exposed to nanomolar concentrations of three putative steroidal pheromones (etiocholanolone, ETIO; estrone, E1; estradiol-glucuronide, E2-3g), whereas females exhibit this response only to ETIO. In this study we implanted females with Silastic capsules that were empty (Blank) or filled with methyl-testosterone (MT) to determine whether androgen induces a male-typical pattern of ventilatory response. As with untreated females in our previous studies, Blank females increased ventilation only in response to ETIO. In contrast, MT females tested 2-3 weeks postimplant responded not only to ETIO, but also to E1 and E2-3g. These results provide the first demonstration of an androgen inducing a male-typical behavioral response to a steroidal pheromone in adult female fish. Together with our previous findings of sexually isomorphic sensory responses to steroid odorants, the present results also suggest that a central action of androgen is responsible for sexually dimorphic behavioral responses to putative pheromonal steroids in Neogobius.

Copyright 2002 Elsevier Science (USA)

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