University of Louisville

Poster Title

Gender and Habitat Effects on Blood Glucose and Serum Triglycerides in Black Bears

Institution

University of Louisville

Abstract

The black bear population in Eastern Kentucky is increasing. Twenty two serum samples were obtained from bears with the potential for significant human contact (Pine Mountain, PM) and potential access to palatable and energy-rich human refuse. Fourteen serum samples were obtained from black bears almost totally isolated from human contact (Big South Fork, BSF), and therefore relying to a greater degree on a more natural diet. It was our hypothesis that bears exposed to a more energy rich diet would have higher blood glucose and triglyceride concentrations. Using assay kits from Cayman Chemical Company, serum glucose and triglyceride values were determined. Blood glucose in the overall BSF ((53.15 ± 3.20mg/dl) or PM (57.38 ± 5.83mg/dl) populations did not differ significantly. Comparison of all females (54.59 ± 7.16mg/dl) and males (56.65 ± 3.77mg/dl) in the two populations did not indicate any differences. However, comparison of adult animals in each population indicated significantly (P<0.05) higher blood glucose levels in females. In contrast, there was a significant difference (P< 0.03) in serum triglycerides between the PM (237± 35 mg/dl) and BSF (143 ± 21mg/dl) populations. This difference was accounted for by females in the two populations, specifically differences in the yearling and sub-adult females. This data supports our hypothesis and suggests both habitat and gender exert an effect on the levels of these two metabolites.

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Gender and Habitat Effects on Blood Glucose and Serum Triglycerides in Black Bears

The black bear population in Eastern Kentucky is increasing. Twenty two serum samples were obtained from bears with the potential for significant human contact (Pine Mountain, PM) and potential access to palatable and energy-rich human refuse. Fourteen serum samples were obtained from black bears almost totally isolated from human contact (Big South Fork, BSF), and therefore relying to a greater degree on a more natural diet. It was our hypothesis that bears exposed to a more energy rich diet would have higher blood glucose and triglyceride concentrations. Using assay kits from Cayman Chemical Company, serum glucose and triglyceride values were determined. Blood glucose in the overall BSF ((53.15 ± 3.20mg/dl) or PM (57.38 ± 5.83mg/dl) populations did not differ significantly. Comparison of all females (54.59 ± 7.16mg/dl) and males (56.65 ± 3.77mg/dl) in the two populations did not indicate any differences. However, comparison of adult animals in each population indicated significantly (P<0.05) higher blood glucose levels in females. In contrast, there was a significant difference (P< 0.03) in serum triglycerides between the PM (237± 35 mg/dl) and BSF (143 ± 21mg/dl) populations. This difference was accounted for by females in the two populations, specifically differences in the yearling and sub-adult females. This data supports our hypothesis and suggests both habitat and gender exert an effect on the levels of these two metabolites.