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CHAPTER 3 – Dynamics Of Primate Follicular Growth: A Physiological Perspective

A. Zeleznik
Published 2003 · Biology

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This chapter summarizes the current views on the process of follicle selection, with particular emphasis on identification of the control mechanisms that may operate in vivo to ensure the successful maturation of a single pre-ovulatory follicle. Most of the concepts presented here are derived from studies with human and non-human primates; when appropriate data are unavailable from primates, extrapolations are made from data obtained from other species. During the follicular phase of the primate menstrual cycle, a single follicle usually grows to the pre-ovulatory stage and releases its oocyte for potential fertilization. Because many follicles can be stimulated to mature when exogenous gonadotropins are administered, the process of follicle maturation during the spontaneous menstrual cycle must represent the culmination of a stringent regulatory process by which one follicle gains and maintains advantage over all other maturing follicles that also would be capable of reaching pre-ovulatory status if provided with exogenous gonadotropins. Follicular maturation to the pre-ovulatory stage is the culmination of a lengthy process in which the maturation of dormant primordial follicles is initiated as the granulosa cells (GC) begin to proliferate and form preantral follicles.
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