Methodological considerations in the analysis of fecal glucocorticoid metabolites in tufted capuchins (Cebus apella)

Wheeler, Brandon C and Tiddi, Barbara and Kalbitzer, Urs and Visalberghi, Elisabetta and Heistermann, Michael (2013) Methodological considerations in the analysis of fecal glucocorticoid metabolites in tufted capuchins (Cebus apella). International Journal of Primatology, 34 (5). pp. 879-898. ISSN 0164-0291. E-ISSN 1573-8604. (doi:https://doi.org/10.1007/s10764-013-9703-y) (Full text available)

Abstract

Analysis of fecal glucocorticoid (GC) metabolites has recently become the standard method to monitor adrenocortical activity in primates noninvasively. However, given variation in the production, metabolism, and excretion of GCs across species and even between sexes, there are no standard methods that are universally applicable. In particular, it is important to validate assays intended to measure GC production, test extraction and storage procedures, and consider the time course of GC metabolite excretion relative to the production and circulation of the native hormones. This study examines these four methodological aspects of fecal GC metabolite analysis in tufted capuchins (Cebus apella). Specifically, we conducted an adrenocorticotrophic hormone (ACTH) challenge on one male and one female capuchin to test the validity of four GC enzyme immunoassays (EIAs) and document the time course characterizing GC me- tabolite excretion in this species. In addition, we compare a common field-friendly technique for extracting fecal GC metabolites to an established laboratory extraction methodology and test for effects of storing “field extracts” for up to 1 yr. Results suggest that a corticosterone EIA is most sensitive to changes in GC production, provides reliable measures when extracted according to the field method, and measures GC metabolites which remain highly stable after even 12 mo of storage. Further, the time course of GC metabolite excretion is shorter than that described yet for any primate taxa. These results provide guidelines for studies of GCs in tufted capuchins, and underscore the importance of validating methods for fecal hormone analysis for each species of interest.

Item Type: Article
Subjects: Q Science
Q Science > QL Zoology
Divisions: Faculties > Social Sciences > School of Anthropology and Conservation > Biological Anthropology
Depositing User: Brandon Wheeler
Date Deposited: 11 Dec 2015 18:02 UTC
Last Modified: 27 Nov 2017 13:52 UTC
Resource URI: https://kar.kent.ac.uk/id/eprint/53207 (The current URI for this page, for reference purposes)
Wheeler, Brandon C: https://orcid.org/0000-0002-8478-3385
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