To what extent can individual variation in the stress response and coping style in time be reflected by hair cortisol in pigs (Sus scrofa domesticus)


StressChron Framework:

Project code018
Research areaUnravelling the fundamentals of glucocorticoid actions across vertebrates
Research topicIndividual variation in stress response
SpeciesPig (Sus scrofa domesticus)



The research goal is to investigate whether individual pigs (Sus scrofa domesticus) kept in the same well-defined management system are differing in hair cortisol level as biomarker for chronic stress. Hair is easy and non-invasive to sample and hence it is possible to evaluate the stress level and more broader the animal welfare over an extended period of time in an objective, animal-friendly but also logistically and financially feasible way on a large scale.



Keywords: husbandry, pig, stress, cortisol, hair

Funding: internal

Status: on-going


Ghent University, Belgium (Aerts J)

Flanders Research Institute for Agriculture, Fisheries and Food, Belgium (Aerts J, Ampe B, Sonck B)



None at present