We have investigated aging of the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis in female rhesus monkeys that differ in adaptive behavior. Plasma cortisol (F) and dehydroepiandrosterone sulfate (DHEA-S) concentrations under basal conditions and under acute psycho-emotional stress were evaluated in blood plasma of young (6-8 years) and old (20-27 years) female rhesus monkeys with various types of adaptive behavior (aggressive, depression-like, and average). We have found that the age-related changes in the HPA axis of monkeys with depression-like behavior were accompanied by the maximal absolute and relative hypercortisolemia under both basal conditions and stress. Moreover, young aggressive monkeys, in comparison with young monkeys of other behavior groups, demonstrated the highest plasma levels of DHEA-S and the lowest molar ratios between F and DHEA-S. Thus, age-related dysfunctions of the HPA axis are associated with adaptive behavior of animals.