Restraint increases afebrile body temperature but attenuates fever in Pekin ducks (Anas platyrhynchos)

D.A. Gray, Shane Maloney, P.R. Kamerman

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    24 Citations (Scopus)


    In mammals, procedures such as handling, restraint, or exposure to open spaces induces an increase in body temperature (T-b). The increase in temperature shares some characteristics with pyrogen-induced fever and so is often called "stress fever." Birds also respond to acute handling with a stress fever, which may confound thermoregulatory studies that involve animal restraint. We have measured the T-b responses of Pekin ducks on days when they were restrained and compared them to days when the birds remained unrestrained. Restraint induced a 0.5 degrees C increase in T-b that was sustained for the entire 8 h of restraint. To determine whether the restraint-induced increase in T-b is mediated by prostaglandins (PGs) we compared the T-b responses during restraint after intraperitoneal injection with saline to the responses during restraint after injection with diclofenac sodium (15 mg/kg). There was no difference in response, suggesting that restraint affects T-b by a PG-independent mechanism. We also compared the T-b response to intramuscular injection of lipopolysaccharide (LPS; 100 mu g/kg), a bacterial pyrogen, when the ducks were restrained or unrestrained. Despite T-b being higher at the time of LPS injection when the ducks were restrained, the maximum temperature reached after LPS injection was higher, and the period that T-b remained elevated was longer when the ducks were unrestrained. We conclude that restraint should be considered as a potential confounder in thermoregulatory studies in birds and presumably other species too.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)R1666-R1671
    JournalAmerican journal of physiology : regulatory, integrative and comparative physiology
    Issue number5
    Publication statusPublished - 2008


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