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Rapid effects of melatonin on hormonal and behavioral stressful responses in ewes.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  23337408     Owner:  NLM     Status:  Publisher    
Abstract/OtherAbstract:
Sheep are gregarious mammals with complex social interactions. As such, they are very sensitive to social isolation and constitute a relevant animal model to study specifically the biological consequences of social stress. We examined previously the behavioral and endocrine responses in ewes isolated socially in the familiar conspecific withdrawal model (FCW) and showed that stressful responses increased and maintenance behaviors decreased, confirming that social isolation is a strong stressor in sheep. Melatonin synchronizes seasonal and circadian rhythms; and several studies reported its implication in cognitive processes as emotion. Here we investigated its role in the modulation of social stressful responses. Firstly, we studied ewes in the FCW model during the day (characterized by low melatonin levels) and the night (characterized by high melatonin levels). We found lower stressful responses (significant lower levels of cortisol plasma, number of foot pawings, of circling attempts) during the night as compared to the day. To investigate whether these effects were due to melatonin or to darkness, we submitted ewes to FCW during the night with lights on, a condition that suppresses melatonin secretion. Ewes infused with melatonin under these conditions showed decreased stressful responses (significant lower levels cortisol plasma, number of vocalizations, time spent with the head out of the cage) as compared to ewes infused with saline. These findings demonstrate that melatonin diminishes the endocrine and behavioral impact of social isolation in ewes and support the idea that melatonin has a calming effect in socially stressful situations.
Authors:
Vanessa Guesdon; Benoît Malpaux; Philippe Delagrange; Michael Spedding; Fabien Cornilleau; Didier Chesneau; József Haller; Elodie Chaillou
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Publication Detail:
Type:  JOURNAL ARTICLE     Date:  2013-1-18
Journal Detail:
Title:  Psychoneuroendocrinology     Volume:  -     ISSN:  1873-3360     ISO Abbreviation:  Psychoneuroendocrinology     Publication Date:  2013 Jan 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2013-1-22     Completed Date:  -     Revised Date:  -    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  7612148     Medline TA:  Psychoneuroendocrinology     Country:  -    
Other Details:
Languages:  ENG     Pagination:  -     Citation Subset:  -    
Copyright Information:
Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Affiliation:
INRA, UMR85 Physiologie de la Reproduction et des Comportements, F-37380 Nouzilly, France; CNRS, UMR6175 Physiologie de la Reproduction et des Comportements, F-37380 Nouzilly, France; Université François Rabelais de Tours, F-37041 Tours, France; IFCE, F-37380 Nouzilly, France. Electronic address: vanessaguesdon@yahoo.fr.
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