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Snyman, P.C., Jackson, C.R. and Bennett, N.C. 2006. Do dispersing non-reproductive female Damaraland mole-rats, Cryptomys damarensis (Rodentia: Bathyergidae) exhibit spontaneous or induced ovulation?. Physiology and Behavior, 87(1): 88–94


Description:

Do dispersing non-reproductive female Damaraland mole-rats, Cryptomys damarensis (Rodentia: Bathyergidae) exhibit spontaneous or induced ovulation?.

Summary / Notes:

The Damaraland mole-rat is a eusocial, subterranean rodent that exhibits a seasonal breeding. Non-reproductive females show physiological suppression of reproduction whilst in the confines of the natal colony. This study set out to investigate whether dispersing female Damaraland mole-rats exhibit induced or spontaneous ovulation. Fifteen non-reproductive females were removed from their natal colonies and housed individually for a period of 6 weeks. During this period urine was collected from all animals every second day. After this initial period the animals were divided into 3 groups. Females were subjected to 1 of 3 trials: a control group housed separately without a male, allowed non-physical contact, or placed in direct physical contact with vasectomized males. Urine was collected for a further 5 weeks, and urinary progesterone profiles established. All three groups showed a significant difference in urinary progesterone concentrations between the two treatment periods indicating initiation of follicular development in all animals following removal from the colony. Histological results further revealed that at least one animal in the control group and five of the six animals in the vasectomized group had corpora lutea present in the ovaries showing that ovulation has taken place. All groups had similar numbers of Graafian follicles, indicating that all females were likely to ovulate in the near future. This finding suggests that females are capable of spontaneous ovulation, but the act of coitus may advance the onset of ovulation in this arid dwelling mole-rat. Keywords: Damaraland mole-rat, Cryptomys, Spontaneous ovulation, Progesterone, Corpora lutea, Vasectomy.

Year: 2006

Type: Journal Article

URL: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0031938405003847


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