Phenotypic differences in behavior, physiology and neurochemistry between rats selected for tameness and for defensive aggression towards humans

Frank W. Albert, Olesya Shchepina, Christine Winter, Holger Römpler, Daniel Teupser, Rupert Palme, Uta Ceglarek, Jürgen Kratzsch, Reinhard Sohr, Lyudmila N. Trut, Joachim Thiery, Rudolf Morgenstern, Irina Z. Plyusnina, Torsten Schöneberg, Svante Pääbo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

79 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

To better understand the biology of tameness, i.e. tolerance of human presence and handling, we analyzed two lines of wild-derived rats (Rattus norvegicus) artificially selected for tameness and defensive aggression towards humans. In response to a gloved human hand, tame rats tolerated handling, whereas aggressive rats attacked. Cross-fostering showed that these behavioral differences are not caused by postnatal maternal effects. Tame rats were more active and explorative and exhibited fewer anxiety-related behaviors. They also had smaller adrenal glands, larger spleens and lower levels of serum corticosterone. Blood glucose levels were lower in tame rats, whereas the concentrations of nine amino acids were higher. In the brain, tame rats had lower serotonin and higher taurine levels than aggressive rats. Our findings reinforce the notion that tameness is correlated with differences in stress response and will facilitate future efforts to uncover the genetic basis for animal tameness.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)413-421
Number of pages9
JournalHormones and Behavior
Volume53
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Mar 1 2008

Fingerprint

Neurochemistry
Aggression
Foster Home Care
Taurine
Adrenal Glands
Corticosterone
Blood Glucose
Serotonin
Spleen
Anxiety
Hand
Amino Acids
Brain

Keywords

  • Anxiety
  • Behavior
  • Corticosterone
  • Domestication
  • Serotonin
  • Taurine

Cite this

Phenotypic differences in behavior, physiology and neurochemistry between rats selected for tameness and for defensive aggression towards humans. / Albert, Frank W.; Shchepina, Olesya; Winter, Christine; Römpler, Holger; Teupser, Daniel; Palme, Rupert; Ceglarek, Uta; Kratzsch, Jürgen; Sohr, Reinhard; Trut, Lyudmila N.; Thiery, Joachim; Morgenstern, Rudolf; Plyusnina, Irina Z.; Schöneberg, Torsten; Pääbo, Svante.

In: Hormones and Behavior, Vol. 53, No. 3, 01.03.2008, p. 413-421.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Albert, FW, Shchepina, O, Winter, C, Römpler, H, Teupser, D, Palme, R, Ceglarek, U, Kratzsch, J, Sohr, R, Trut, LN, Thiery, J, Morgenstern, R, Plyusnina, IZ, Schöneberg, T & Pääbo, S 2008, 'Phenotypic differences in behavior, physiology and neurochemistry between rats selected for tameness and for defensive aggression towards humans', Hormones and Behavior, vol. 53, no. 3, pp. 413-421. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.yhbeh.2007.11.010
Albert, Frank W. ; Shchepina, Olesya ; Winter, Christine ; Römpler, Holger ; Teupser, Daniel ; Palme, Rupert ; Ceglarek, Uta ; Kratzsch, Jürgen ; Sohr, Reinhard ; Trut, Lyudmila N. ; Thiery, Joachim ; Morgenstern, Rudolf ; Plyusnina, Irina Z. ; Schöneberg, Torsten ; Pääbo, Svante. / Phenotypic differences in behavior, physiology and neurochemistry between rats selected for tameness and for defensive aggression towards humans. In: Hormones and Behavior. 2008 ; Vol. 53, No. 3. pp. 413-421.
@article{b4d35fef248d4308ba6b1c3fd36a3fd6,
title = "Phenotypic differences in behavior, physiology and neurochemistry between rats selected for tameness and for defensive aggression towards humans",
abstract = "To better understand the biology of tameness, i.e. tolerance of human presence and handling, we analyzed two lines of wild-derived rats (Rattus norvegicus) artificially selected for tameness and defensive aggression towards humans. In response to a gloved human hand, tame rats tolerated handling, whereas aggressive rats attacked. Cross-fostering showed that these behavioral differences are not caused by postnatal maternal effects. Tame rats were more active and explorative and exhibited fewer anxiety-related behaviors. They also had smaller adrenal glands, larger spleens and lower levels of serum corticosterone. Blood glucose levels were lower in tame rats, whereas the concentrations of nine amino acids were higher. In the brain, tame rats had lower serotonin and higher taurine levels than aggressive rats. Our findings reinforce the notion that tameness is correlated with differences in stress response and will facilitate future efforts to uncover the genetic basis for animal tameness.",
keywords = "Anxiety, Behavior, Corticosterone, Domestication, Serotonin, Taurine",
author = "Albert, {Frank W.} and Olesya Shchepina and Christine Winter and Holger R{\"o}mpler and Daniel Teupser and Rupert Palme and Uta Ceglarek and J{\"u}rgen Kratzsch and Reinhard Sohr and Trut, {Lyudmila N.} and Joachim Thiery and Rudolf Morgenstern and Plyusnina, {Irina Z.} and Torsten Sch{\"o}neberg and Svante P{\"a}{\"a}bo",
year = "2008",
month = "3",
day = "1",
doi = "10.1016/j.yhbeh.2007.11.010",
language = "English (US)",
volume = "53",
pages = "413--421",
journal = "Hormones and Behavior",
issn = "0018-506X",
publisher = "Academic Press Inc.",
number = "3",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - Phenotypic differences in behavior, physiology and neurochemistry between rats selected for tameness and for defensive aggression towards humans

AU - Albert, Frank W.

AU - Shchepina, Olesya

AU - Winter, Christine

AU - Römpler, Holger

AU - Teupser, Daniel

AU - Palme, Rupert

AU - Ceglarek, Uta

AU - Kratzsch, Jürgen

AU - Sohr, Reinhard

AU - Trut, Lyudmila N.

AU - Thiery, Joachim

AU - Morgenstern, Rudolf

AU - Plyusnina, Irina Z.

AU - Schöneberg, Torsten

AU - Pääbo, Svante

PY - 2008/3/1

Y1 - 2008/3/1

N2 - To better understand the biology of tameness, i.e. tolerance of human presence and handling, we analyzed two lines of wild-derived rats (Rattus norvegicus) artificially selected for tameness and defensive aggression towards humans. In response to a gloved human hand, tame rats tolerated handling, whereas aggressive rats attacked. Cross-fostering showed that these behavioral differences are not caused by postnatal maternal effects. Tame rats were more active and explorative and exhibited fewer anxiety-related behaviors. They also had smaller adrenal glands, larger spleens and lower levels of serum corticosterone. Blood glucose levels were lower in tame rats, whereas the concentrations of nine amino acids were higher. In the brain, tame rats had lower serotonin and higher taurine levels than aggressive rats. Our findings reinforce the notion that tameness is correlated with differences in stress response and will facilitate future efforts to uncover the genetic basis for animal tameness.

AB - To better understand the biology of tameness, i.e. tolerance of human presence and handling, we analyzed two lines of wild-derived rats (Rattus norvegicus) artificially selected for tameness and defensive aggression towards humans. In response to a gloved human hand, tame rats tolerated handling, whereas aggressive rats attacked. Cross-fostering showed that these behavioral differences are not caused by postnatal maternal effects. Tame rats were more active and explorative and exhibited fewer anxiety-related behaviors. They also had smaller adrenal glands, larger spleens and lower levels of serum corticosterone. Blood glucose levels were lower in tame rats, whereas the concentrations of nine amino acids were higher. In the brain, tame rats had lower serotonin and higher taurine levels than aggressive rats. Our findings reinforce the notion that tameness is correlated with differences in stress response and will facilitate future efforts to uncover the genetic basis for animal tameness.

KW - Anxiety

KW - Behavior

KW - Corticosterone

KW - Domestication

KW - Serotonin

KW - Taurine

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=39149131674&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=39149131674&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1016/j.yhbeh.2007.11.010

DO - 10.1016/j.yhbeh.2007.11.010

M3 - Article

C2 - 18177873

AN - SCOPUS:39149131674

VL - 53

SP - 413

EP - 421

JO - Hormones and Behavior

JF - Hormones and Behavior

SN - 0018-506X

IS - 3

ER -