Ovarian function in ruminants

Domestic Animal Endocrinology
Bajram Berisha, D Schams


The purpose of this overview is to highlight important steps of ovarian regulation during follicle development, ovulation and the life span of corpus luteum (CL) in ruminants. The ovarian cycle is central to reproductive function. It is characterized by repeating patterns of cellular proliferation, differentiation and transformation that encompass follicular development and ovulation as well as the formation, function and regression of the CL. In the first part, the importance and regulation of final follicle growth and especially of angiogenesis and blood flow during folliculogenesis, dominant follicle development and CL formation are described. Our results underline the importance of growth factors especially of insulin-like growth factor (IGF), vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) and fibroblast growth factor (FGF) for development and completion of a dense network of capillaries (angiogenesis) during follicle growth and CL formation. In the second part, the regulation of CL function by endocrine/paracrine and autocrine acting regulators is discussed. There is evidence that besides the main endocrine hormones luteinizing hormone (LH) and growth hormone (GH) local regulators as growth factors, peptides, steroids and prost...Continue Reading


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