Scents of Adolescence: The Maturation of the Olfactory Phenotype in a Free-Ranging Mammal

Caspers B, Schroeder FC, Franke S, Voigt CC (2011)
PLoS ONE 6(6).

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Abstract
Olfaction is an important sensory modality for mate recognition in many mammal species. Odorants provide information about the health status, genotype, dominance status and/or reproductive status. How and when odor profiles change during sexual maturation is, however often unclear, particularly in free-ranging mammals. Here, we investigated whether the wing sac odorant of male greater sac-winged bats (Saccopteryx bilineata, Emballonuridae) differs between young and adults, and thus offers information about sexual maturity to potential mating partners. Using gas chromatography - mass spectrometry, we found differences in the odorants of young and adult males prior and during, but not after the mating period. The wing sac odorant of adult males consists of several substances, such as Pyrocoll, 2,6,10-trimethyl-3-oxo-6,10-dodecadienolide, and a so far unidentified substance; all being absent in the odor profiles of juveniles prior to the mating season. During the mating season, these substances are present in most of the juvenile odorants, but still at lower quantities compared to the wing sac odorants of adults. These results suggest that the wing sac odorant of males encodes information about age and/or sexual maturity. Although female S. bilineata start to reproduce at the age of half a year, most males of the same age postpone the sexual maturation of their olfactory phenotype until after the first mating season.
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Article Processing Charge funded by the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft and the Open Access Publication Fund of Bielefeld University.
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Caspers B, Schroeder FC, Franke S, Voigt CC. Scents of Adolescence: The Maturation of the Olfactory Phenotype in a Free-Ranging Mammal. PLoS ONE. 2011;6(6).
Caspers, B., Schroeder, F. C., Franke, S., & Voigt, C. C. (2011). Scents of Adolescence: The Maturation of the Olfactory Phenotype in a Free-Ranging Mammal. PLoS ONE, 6(6).
Caspers, B., Schroeder, F. C., Franke, S., and Voigt, C. C. (2011). Scents of Adolescence: The Maturation of the Olfactory Phenotype in a Free-Ranging Mammal. PLoS ONE 6.
Caspers, B., et al., 2011. Scents of Adolescence: The Maturation of the Olfactory Phenotype in a Free-Ranging Mammal. PLoS ONE, 6(6).
B. Caspers, et al., “Scents of Adolescence: The Maturation of the Olfactory Phenotype in a Free-Ranging Mammal”, PLoS ONE, vol. 6, 2011.
Caspers, B., Schroeder, F.C., Franke, S., Voigt, C.C.: Scents of Adolescence: The Maturation of the Olfactory Phenotype in a Free-Ranging Mammal. PLoS ONE. 6, (2011).
Caspers, Barbara, Schroeder, Frank C., Franke, Stephan, and Voigt, Christian C. “Scents of Adolescence: The Maturation of the Olfactory Phenotype in a Free-Ranging Mammal”. PLoS ONE 6.6 (2011).
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