The Relation between Plasma Nesfatin-1 Levels and Aggressive Behavior in Pit Bull Dogs

Creative Commons License

GÜVENÇ BAYRAM G., SEMEN Z., Polat-Dincer P. F., Sertkaya Z. T., ÜSTÜNDAĞ Y., Ates C., ...More

Animals, vol.14, no.4, 2024 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 14 Issue: 4
  • Publication Date: 2024
  • Doi Number: 10.3390/ani14040632
  • Journal Name: Animals
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus, Academic Search Premier, Agricultural & Environmental Science Database, CAB Abstracts, EMBASE, Food Science & Technology Abstracts, Veterinary Science Database, Directory of Open Access Journals
  • Keywords: aggression, dopamine, nesfatin-1, oxytocin, Pit Bull dog breeds, serotonin
  • Bursa Uludag University Affiliated: Yes


Aggression is a prevalent and concerning behavioral issue in dogs. Pit Bull dogs, known for their high levels of aggression, are recognized as a focus of concern in society. In our study, we aimed to investigate the behavioral characteristics of Pit Bull dogs and explore the potential roles of peptides involved in the neurobiology of aggression. Initially, female, and male dogs underwent aggression tests, and their aggression levels were categorized. Plasma nesfatin-1, serotonin, oxytocin, and dopamine levels were quantified using ELISA, with blood samples collected after a 24 h fasting period and 2 h post-refeeding. Our findings indicate that aggression in Pit Bull dogs correlates with decreased plasma nesfatin-1, serotonin, and oxytocin levels, while dopamine levels increase. The study’s findings indicate that fasted dogs exhibited lower plasma levels of nesfatin-1, serotonin, and dopamine, while plasma oxytocin levels were higher. Furthermore, while the research findings do not suggest a significant relationship between the severity of aggression and the gender of the dog, male Pit Bull breeds appear to have higher plasma nesfatin-1 and serotonin levels compared to their female counterparts. The study’s findings demonstrate that nesfatin-1, serotonin, oxytocin, and dopamine play pivotal roles in Pit Bull dogs’ aggression, indicating potential interactions among these neuropeptides at the central nervous system level.