Hormonal control of sexual differentiation: changes in electric organ discharge waveform

Science  27 May 1983:
Vol. 220, Issue 4600, pp. 971-974
DOI: 10.1126/science.6844924


Males and females of some mormyrid electric fishes generate electrical pulses that differ in waveform and duration. For one such species, testosterone or dihydrotestosterone induces females and immature males to produce the mature male electric organ discharge which is two times the duration of the female or immature discharge. Estradiol has only a weak effect. For a second species where males and females have similar electric organ discharges, testosterone produces no effect. The data suggest that androgens affect the electric organ itself.