Skip Navigation
  • UC Riverside
  • College of Natural and Agricultural Sciences

92Abs 97.  Klomberg, K. F., T. Garland, Jr., J. G. Swallow, and P. A. Carter. 2002.
Dominance, plasma testosterone levels, and testis size in house mice artificially selected for high activity levels.
Physiology & Behavior 66:in press.

Abstract

     Male house mice (Mus domesticus) from four replicate lines selectively bred for high voluntary wheel-running behavior were compared with four random-bred control lines with respect to dominance, testis size, and plasma testosterone level. Behavior was measured with a tube apparatus in which focal mice encountered a standard opponent from an inbred strain, and positions of mice were scored over a 10-min period; the test was replicated the following day. Blood samples were taken from undisturbed mice 1 week prior to testing (baseline condition) and immediately after the first tube test; plasma testosterone was measured by enzyme immunoassay with chromatography. As compared with control lines, mice from selected lines tended to be smaller in body mass, to have larger testes, and were significantly less likely to advance towards their opponent during the second tube-test encounter. However, no significant differences in either baseline or postencounter testosterone levels were detected. Significant differences in body mass, relative testis size, position during the first tube-test encounter, and baseline testosterone were found among the replicate lines within linetype, which indicates founder effects, random genetic drift, unique mutations, and/or multiple responses to selection. At the level of individual variation (residuals from nested analysis of covariance models), an inverse relationship between baseline testosterone and advancing in the tube test was observed, and the relationship was stronger during the second test day. This unexpected result may reflect an alternate coping strategy.
Copyright 2002 Elsevier Science, Inc.