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Nandrolone decanoate has long-term effects on dominance in a competitive situation in male rats

Journal article
Authors Ann-Sophie Lindqvist
Claudia Fahlke
Published in Psysiol Behavior
Volume 84
Pages 45-51
Publication year 2005
Published at Department of Psychology
Pages 45-51
Language en
Keywords Anabolic androgenic steroids, dominance, social aggression
Subject categories Psychology


The aim of the present study was to examine possible long-term effects of the anabolic androgenic steroid, nandrolone decanoate (ND), on dominance in a pro-voking and competitive situation in sexually matured male rats. The experimen-tal group (n = 10) received daily injections of ND [15 mg/kg in a volume of 1 ml per kg s.c. for 14 days]. During the corresponding period, the controls (n = 10) were given daily injections of an oil vehicle [1 ml per kg s.c.]. All animals were tested in a competitive situation at four occasions after the end of the treatment period (week 5, 8, 11 and 14). Water deprived pairs of rats, consisting of one ND-treated rat and one control, had to compete for access to water. The results showed that the ND-treated rats approached the water spout significantly more often compared to the controls. During the competition tests the ND treated rats spent more time drinking, an effect that was prominent for 11 weeks after the end of the treatment period. The ND-treated rats also displayed more frequently piloerection than the controls. The results indicate that ND has long-term effect on dominance in a provoking and competitive situation.

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