A Possible Humoral Pathway for the Priming Action of the Male Pheromone Androstenol on Female Pigs
Intraspecific communication by chemical signals (pheromones) plays important behavioral and physiological roles in coordinating reproduction in mammals. Females of a variety of domestic species respond to pheromones from males by undergoing an earlier onset of puberty (Brooks and Cole, 1970; Kirkwood et al., 1983; Kalbrom, 1982; Pearce and Paterson, 1992), alterations in ovarian cycles (Oldham et al., 1979; Booth and Baldwin, 1983; Booth and Signoret, 1992) and estrous behavior (Signoret, 1970; Domes et al., 1997). The precocious attainment of puberty in gilts was studied after contact with the boar (Kirkwood et al., 1983; Kalbrom, 1982) or following the treatment with the male pheromone androstenone, commercially available as an aerosol spray called Suidor (Glei et al., 1989). According to Pearce and Paterson (1992), physical contact with the boar is essential for the maximal pubertal acceleration as it allows the direct transfer of the priming pheromone from the boar to the snout of the recipient gilt; among adult females, nosing and sniffing of the genitalia corresponded to 47% of interactions between the boar and anestrous gilts, while the remaining 43% of interactions involved head-to-head contacts (Signoret, 1970).
KeywordsNasal Cavity Cavernous Sinus Nasal Mucosa Estrous Cycle Tritiated Water
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