Female Feathering in Sebright Cocks Is Due to Conversion of Testosterone to Estradiol in Skin

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Science  31 Jul 1981:
Vol. 213, Issue 4507, pp. 557-559
DOI: 10.1126/science.213.4507.557


Sebright cocks develop a female feathering pattern but revert to normal male feathering after castration. Administration of testosterone to castrated cocks causes male comb development and reappearance of female feathering. Dihydrotes-tosterone treatment supports development of a male comb but does not induce female feathering. Since testosterone but not dihydrotestosterone is converted to estradiol in the skin of the Sebright, the female feathering appears to be the result of increased conversion of testosterone to estradiol.