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The effect of ACTH on plasma corticosterone and cortisol was determined in 12 eagles (Haliaeetus leucocephalus) and in 6 Andean condors (Vultur gryphus). In all raptors, the concentration of plasma corticosterone was substantially greater than that of cortisol. After ACTH administration, the eagles had a marked increase (P less than 0.001) in plasma corticosterone concentrations, but not in plasma cortisol. Administration of saline solution did not induce increased plasma corticosterone concentrations in the eagles. The condors had a smaller increase (P less than 0.002) in plasma corticosterone concentrations after ACTH administration, as compared with that of the eagles. However, administration of saline solution in 2 condors resulted in an increase in corticosterone similar to the increase after ACTH administration. In the condor, a stress-related release of endogenous ACTH may have an effect similar to that induced by exogenously administered ACTH. Plasma cortisol concentrations did not increase significantly after administration of ACTH or saline solution in either raptor species.
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Effect of ACTH on plasma corticosterone and cortisol in eagles and condors
Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association