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Horm Behav. 1985 Jun;19(2):154-63.

Serum testosterone, male dominance, and aggression in captive groups of vervet monkeys (Cercopithecus aethiops sabaeus).


The relationship of serum testosterone concentration to male dominance rank and frequency of aggression was investigated in stable vervet monkey social groups, each containing two or three adult males, several adult females, and their offspring. Dominance relationships were determined by noting an animal's success in intermale aggressive encounters. A striking finding was the marked within-subject variation in testosterone concentration: 5- to 10-fold fluctuations were often observed on successive days. When all 15 groups were considered together, testosterone concentration was unrelated to dominance rank. Although mean testosterone concentration for all dominant males was higher than the mean for all subordinate males, this difference was not significant. In a subset of 4 groups, the rate of aggression initiated was significantly correlated with same-day testosterone in dominant but not in subordinate males.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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