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Classic theories of ageing consider extrinsic mortality (EM) a major factor in shaping longevity and ageing, yet most studies of functional ageing focus on species with low EM. This bias may cause overestimation of the influence of senescent declines in performance over condition-dependent mortality on demographic processes across taxa. To simultaneously(More)
Reliable measurements of physiological stress are increasingly needed for eco-physiological research and for species conservation or management. Stress can be estimated by quantifying plasma glucocorticoid levels, but when this is not feasible, glucocorticoid metabolites are often measured from feces (FGCM). However, evidence is accumulating on the(More)
Fighting is a fundamental determinant of male fitness in species where females prefer socially dominant males as mates or where dominants can prevent subordinates from mating. This in turn can lead to the evolution of honest inter- and intra-sexual cues of male dominance. Fighting as a behaviour comprises both fighting rate (number of fights per unit of(More)
Muscle strength reflects physical functioning, declines at old age and predicts health and survival in humans and laboratory animals. Age-associated muscle deterioration causes loss of strength and may impair fitness of wild animals. However, the effects of age and life-history characteristics on muscle strength in wild animals are unknown. We investigated(More)
Chronic stress [i.e. long-term elevation of glucocorticoid (GC) levels] and aging have similar, negative effects on the functioning of an organism. Aged individuals’ declining ability to regulate GC levels may therefore impair their ability to cope with stress, as found in humans. The coping of aged animals with long-term natural stressors is virtually(More)
Immunosenescence (deteriorating immune function at old age) affects humans and laboratory animals, but little is known about immunosenescence in natural populations despite its potential importance for population and disease dynamics and individual fitness. Although life histories and immune system profiles often differ between the sexes, sex-specific(More)
To compare the effectiveness of diverse rehabilitation programmes, comparable data about their effects on maintaining or improving the residual function of the rehabilitation patients should be gathered. Current rehabilitation theories and assessment procedures for functioning are not consistent enough for valid comparisons. The rehabilitation theory should(More)
Understanding how animals react to human-induced changes in their environment is a key question in conservation biology. Owing to their potential correlation with fitness, several physiological parameters are commonly used to assess the effect of habitat disturbance on animals' general health status. Here, we studied how two lemur species, the fat-tailed(More)
The relationship between mental health and functioning has been inconsistently described. Here, the role of mental health in determining functioning was studied from a large multi-axial (biopsychosocial) and multi-dimensional (impairments, disabilities and handicaps) point of view. Case-analysis of rehabilitation patients indicated that inconsistent(More)