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Seasonal relationship between immunocompetence, STERIODS and stress response in ectoterms

Grant number: 18/00406-0
Support type:Scholarships in Brazil - Post-Doctorate
Effective date (Start): July 01, 2018
Field of knowledge:Biological Sciences - Physiology
Principal Investigator:Fernando Ribeiro Gomes
Grantee:Carla Bonetti Madelaire
Home Institution: Instituto de Biociências (IB). Universidade de São Paulo (USP). São Paulo , SP, Brazil
Associated research grant:14/16320-7 - Impacts of climate/environmental change on the fauna: an integrative approach, AP.PFPMCG.TEM
Associated scholarship(s):19/13164-8 - Stress markers in anurans: how stress stimuli affects saliva glucocorticoids levels and seasonality affects brain receptors, BE.EP.PD


Steroid hormones mediate transitions between life history stages in vertebrates due to their broad effect on their physiology and behavior. Species that display seasonal reproduction increase their androgens (AN), estradiol (E) and glucocorticoids (GC) during this period in order to mediate and facilitate reproduction. Additionally, steroid concentration and time of exposure along with individual energetic state regulate immunocompetence. Reproduction and immunity are energetic expensive and the differential cost of reproduction between males and females could affect how sexes invest in immunocompetence. The GC are mediators of the stress response, however the continuum activation of the adrenals to produce corticosterone could result on inhibition of reproductive steroids, suppressing reproduction. Vertebrates that display drastic transitions among life history stages are ideal models for integrative studies between steroids, energetic state and immunocompetence, and to identify if there is differential investment on immunity among sexes during reproductive period. Additionally, commercial anuran species are ideal to test experimentally the functional relationship between GC plasma levels, CG receptors in the brain and immunocompetence.