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Physiol Behav. 1995 Oct;58(4):633-9.

Sexual responses to urinary chemosignals depend on photoperiod in a male primate.

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CNRS URA 1183, Laboratoire d'Ecologie Générale, MNHN, Brunoy, France.


In male lesser mouse lemurs, testicular size and plasma testosterone levels are controlled by photoperiodic variations but can be modified by urinary cues from conspecifics. To test whether urinary cues may have differential effects on testicular size and testosterone levels depending on the photoperiodic state of the receiver, isolated males were exposed for 4 wk to urinary cues from oestrous females or dominant males:--at the beginning of the breeding season induced by long photoperiod (LD),--during refractoriness to LD leading to spontaneous sexual regression and during sexual quiescence exhibited by males kept in short photoperiod (SD). Urinary chemosignals from females were always stimulatory producing significant increases in testosterone levels. By contrast, urinary cues from dominant males produced significant differential effects on reproductive function. They depressed sexual function only at the beginning of the breeding season. During SD or during refractoriness to LD, chemosignals were stimulatory leading to increases in testosterone levels and full development of testes. These results demonstrate that the same chemosignal may have opposite effect on sexual function of the receiver depending on endocrine mechanisms set up by photoperiod.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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