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Development and Validation of an Enzyme Immunoassay for Fecal Dehydroepiandrosterone Sulfate in Japanese Macaques (Macaca fuscata)
Rafaela S. C. Takeshita, Fred B. Bercovitch, Michael A. Huffman, Kodzue Kinoshita

Measuring hormonal profiles is important in monitoring stress, physical fitness, and reproductive status in primates. Noninvasive methods have been used to measure several steroid hormones in primates without causing them stress. However, few studies have used feces or urine to measure dehydroepiandrosterone sulfate (DHEAS), an important precursor of sex steroids that has been studied as a biomarker of aging, pregnancy, and stress in humans and nonhuman primates. We developed an enzyme immunoassay to detect DHEAS in the feces of Japanese macaques (Macaca fuscata). Our subjects included eight singly housed Japanese macaques. To validate the assay, we administrated oral DHEA to one male and one female macaque, collected their feces, and measured DHEAS levels over time. Given that DHEAS is related to gonadal steroids and the stress response, we also measured DHEAS concentrations in response to adrenal (adrenocorticotropic hormone [ACTH]) and gonadal (human chorionic gonadotropin [hCG]) stimulation. Our assay successfully detected DHEAS in Japanese macaque feces, and levels of DHEAS were associated with the amount of DHEA ingested. Parallelism and accuracy tests revealed that fecal extracts were reliable measures of DHEAS. Neither ACTH nor hCG challenge appeared to affect DHEAS levels. The method we describe is less expensive than that using the commercially available kits and is applicable to investigations involving aging, stress, and reproduction in Japanese macaques.
Bibliographic information

International Journal of Primatology pp 1ур?4
DOI https://doi.org/10.1007/s10764-018-0026-x
Publisher Name Springer US
Print ISSN 0164-0291
Online ISSN 1573-8604
2018/04/12 Primate Research Institute