Steroid regulation of retinol-binding protein in the ovine oviduct. (1/1061)

Two studies were conducted to identify retinol-binding protein (RBP) expression in the ovine oviduct and to determine the role of ovarian steroids in its regulation. Ewes were salpingectomized on Days 1, 5, or 10 of their respective estrous cycles, and oviducts were homogenized for RNA analysis, fixed for immunocytochemistry (ICC), or cultured for 24 h for protein analysis. ICC localized RBP to the epithelium of all oviducts. RBP synthesis was demonstrated by immunoprecipitation of radiolabeled RBP from the medium of oviductal explant cultures. Explant culture medium from oviducts harvested on Day 1 contained significantly more RBP than medium from oviducts collected on Days 5 or 10. Slot-blot analysis demonstrated that steady-state RBP mRNA levels were significantly higher on Day 1 than Day 5 or 10. In the second experiment, ovariectomized ewes were treated with estradiol-17beta (E2), progesterone (P4), E2+P4 (E2+P4), or vehicle control, and oviducts were analyzed as above. P4 alone or in combination with E2 significantly reduced steady-state RBP mRNA levels compared to those in E2-treated animals. Oviductal explants from E2- and E2+P4-treated animals released 3- to 5-fold more RBP into the medium than control and P4 treatments as determined by ELISA. RBP synthesis of metabolically labeled RBP was increased by E2 and E2+P4 treatments. This study demonstrates that P4 applied on an estradiol background negatively regulates RBP gene expression in the oviduct whereas estradiol appears to stimulate RBP synthesis and secretion.  (+info)

Sperm transport in the human female genital tract and its modulation by oxytocin as assessed by hysterosalpingoscintigraphy, hysterotonography, electrohysterography and Doppler sonography. (2/1061)

The transport function of the uterus and oviducts and its modulation by oxytocin has been examined using hysterosalpingoscintigraphy, recording of intrauterine pressure, electrohysterography and Doppler sonography of the Fallopian tubes. After application to the posterior vaginal fornix, a rapid (within minutes) uptake of the labelled particles into the uterus was observed during the follicular and during the luteal phase of the cycle in all patients. Transport into the oviducts, however, could only be demonstrated during the follicular phase. Transport was directed predominantly into the tube ipsilateral to the ovary bearing the dominant follicle; the contralateral oviduct appeared to be functionally closed. The proportion of patients exhibiting ipsilateral transport did increase concomitant with the increase of the diameter of the dominant follicle. That ipsilateral transport has biological significance is suggested by the observation that the pregnancy rate following spontaneous intercourse or insemination was significantly higher in those women in whom ipsilateral transport could be demonstrated than in those who failed to exhibit lateralization. Oxytocin administration was followed by a dramatic increase in the amount of material transported to the ipsilateral tube, as demonstrated by radionuclide imaging and by Doppler sonography following instillation of ultrasound contrast medium. Continuous recording of intrauterine pressure before and after oxytocin administration did show an increase in basal tonus and amplitude of contractions and a reversal of the pressure gradient from a fundo-cervical to a cervico-fundal direction. These actions of oxytocin were accompanied by an increase in amplitude of potentials recorded by electrohysterography. These data support the view that uterus and Fallopian tubes represent a functional unit that is acting as a peristaltic pump and that the increasing activity of this pump during the follicular phase of the menstrual cycle is reflected by an increased transport into the oviduct ipsilateral to the ovary bearing the dominant follicle. In addition, they strongly suggest a critical role of oxytocin in this process. Failure of this mechanism appears to be a cause of subfertility or infertility, as indicated by the low pregnancy rate following intrauterine insemination or normal intercourse in the presence of patent Fallopian tubes. It may be regarded as a new nosological entity for which we propose the term tubal transport disorder (TTD). Since pregnancy rate of such patients is normal when treated with in-vitro fertilization (IVF), hysterosalpingoscintigraphy seems to be useful for the choice of treatment modalities in patients with patent Fallopian tubes suffering from infertility.  (+info)

Sperm-oviduct interaction: induction of capacitation and preferential binding of uncapacitated spermatozoa to oviductal epithelial cells in porcine species. (3/1061)

After mating, inseminated spermatozoa are transported to the oviduct. They attach to and interact with oviductal epithelial cells (OEC). To investigate sperm-OEC interactions, we used chlortetracycline to study the capacitation status of boar spermatozoa in coculture with homologous OEC and cells of nonreproductive origin (LLC-PK1, porcine kidney epithelial cell line). Boar spermatozoa were cocultured with OEC and LLC-PK1 cells for 15, 60, 120, or 240 min. The proportion of capacitated spermatozoa in coculture with the isthmic and ampullar cells increased significantly (p < 0.05) during incubation. However, most spermatozoa in coculture with LLC-PK1 cells or blank (medium only) remained uncapacitated. In addition, preferential binding of uncapacitated, capacitated, or acrosome-reacted boar spermatozoa to OEC and the other cell type was investigated. Our approach was to vary the proportions of uncapacitated, capacitated, or acrosome-reacted boar spermatozoa in suspension using long preincubation and lysophosphatidylcholine treatment of semen prior to a very short incubation with OEC or LLC-PK1 cells. The results showed that the majority of spermatozoa that were bound to OEC or LLC-PK1 cells were uncapacitated and that a significant relationship existed between the relative proportion of uncapacitated spermatozoa in the control samples and those bound to LLC-PK1 cells (r2 = 0.43, p < 0.005). However, there was no correlation between the proportion of uncapacitated spermatozoa in the control samples and the proportion of those bound to isthmic or ampullar cells. In conclusion, the results clearly demonstrated the specific nature of the sperm-OEC interaction in the porcine species. This interaction is initiated by uncapacitated spermatozoa binding to OEC and is continued by the induction of capacitation in cocultured spermatozoa.  (+info)

Sperm migration into and through the oviduct following artificial insemination at different stages of the estrous cycle in the rat. (4/1061)

In order to examine whether sperm migration into and through the oviduct follows an invariable pattern or is subject to regulation, rats in proestrus, estrus, metestrus, or diestrus were inseminated in the upper third of each uterine horn with 10-20 million epididymal spermatozoa. Three or eight hours later, the numbers of spermatozoa free and adhering to the epithelium in the ampullary and isthmic segments were determined. A significantly higher number of spermatozoa were recovered in estrus than in other stages, at 3 h than at 8 h, and at all stages from the isthmus than from the ampulla. Spermatozoa adhering to the epithelium were observed only in proestrus and estrus and in the isthmus. The effect of exogenous estradiol-17beta (E2) and progesterone (P4) on sperm migration was investigated in rats in which the estrous cycle was inhibited pharmacologically. E2 facilitated sperm migration into the oviduct and P4 antagonized this effect, whereas P4 alone had no effect. Concomitant treatment with E2+P4 induced adhesion of spermatozoa to the oviductal epithelium. In conclusion, the pattern of sperm migration into and through the rat oviduct varies with the stage of the cycle, being dependent on E2 and P4. The adhesion of spermatozoa to the rat oviductal epithelium is stage- and segment-specific and requires the combined action of both hormones.  (+info)

Distribution of gangliosides, GM1 and GM3, in the rat oviduct. (5/1061)

It is known that gangliosides, being ubiquitous membrane components, play important roles in cell-cell recognition, differentiation and transmembrane signalling. GM3, GM1 and GD1a were detected in the rat oviduct as major gangliosides by thin-layer chromatography (TLC) analysis. The total amounts of gangliosides from the oviducts at various times after hormone injection were not much changed. In order to identify their distribution and possible changes during ovulation, frozen sections of the rat oviducts were stained with specific monoclonal antibodies (MAbs) against the ganglio-series gangliosides. GM3 and GM1 were expressed in a different manner, but GD1a and other gangliosides were not immunohistochemically detected. In the ampullar region, GM3 was expressed in all the stroma and epithelial cells, but not GM1. GM1 was also not observed in epithelial cells. Staining by anti-GM1 monoclonal antibodies revealed long and minute thread-like structures in some of the stroma cells, whereas anti-GM3 monoclonal antibodies stained the entire cytoplasm, but not the nucleus, of all the stroma and epithelial cells. Other ganglio-series gangliosides, including GD1a, were not detected to some extent in the ampullar region by immunohistochemistry. Thus, these data suggest that GM3 and GM1 are oviduct-specific gangliosides.  (+info)

Arteriovenous malformation of mesosalpinx associated with a 'vanishing' ectopic pregnancy: diagnosis with three-dimensional color power angiography. (6/1061)

We describe two cases of pelvic arteriovenous malformation diagnosed with the aid of three-dimensional color power angiography. In both cases, beta-human chorionic gonadotropin (beta-hCG) increased to significant levels (8413 and 1560 mIU/ml, respectively); however, neither an intrauterine nor an adnexal gestational sac could be found. In each case, we observed an adnexal mass with several tortuous areas exhibiting abundant turbulent flow. The diagnosis of arteriovenous malformation was made and further assessment by three-dimensional color power angiography and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) was carried out. The complex vascular anatomy of arteriovenous malformation, including its feeding vessels and drainage, was clearly depicted by three-dimensional color power angiography and correlated well with magnetic resonance angiography. Levels of beta-hCG decreased in subsequent tests, and eventually became negative 2-3 months later without and intervention. We believe that an involutional ectopic pregnancy induced the rapid growth of the arteriovenous malformations within the mesosalpinx. Three-dimensional color power angiography can be performed quickly and easily, using existing ultrasound equipment. It improves our understanding of complicated vasculature, and thus is a useful adjunct to two-dimensional and color Doppler ultrasound in the diagnosis of arteriovenous malformation.  (+info)

Estimates of mouse oviductal fluid tonicity based on osmotic responses of embryos. (7/1061)

Zygotes and early cleavage-stage embryos are very sensitive to increased osmolality in vitro, although the tonicity of their in vivo environment, oviductal fluid, is unknown. A preference for low osmolality in vitro might imply similar conditions in vivo or be specific to culture. Previous electron probe x-ray microanalysis measurements of total ion content predicted oviductal fluid osmolalities of 310-360 mOs/kg, higher than osmolalities tolerated by mouse zygotes in vitro. However, such indirect estimates may not reflect the tonicity experienced by embryos. We have now used embryos themselves as osmosensors to determine the tonicity of mouse oviductal fluid. In one method, we measured the mean volume of zygotes in undiluted oviductal fluid and compared this to the mean volumes measured for zygotes in media spanning a range of osmolalities. The osmolality corresponding to the measured mean volume in oviductal fluid was taken to be isotonic. In another, independent method, the sizes of zygotes and two-cell embryos were measured as a function of time beginning immediately after removal from oviducts. The osmolality in which the embryos neither swelled nor shrank was taken to be isotonic. Both methods yielded approximately the same range for the tonicity of oviductal fluid: around 290-300 mOs/kg.  (+info)

Laparoscopic surgery of unicornuate uterus with rudimentary uterine horn. (8/1061)

This report describes a new procedure for laparoscopic treatment of non-communicating rudimentary uterine horn when attached to the contralateral unicornuate uterus by a band of tissue. A retrograde dissection with primary bipolar coagulation and section of the band of tissue enables primary occlusion of the main blood supply. In our opinion, this new approach may prevent bleeding during laparoscopic dissection of the rudimentary horn and may avoid myometrial injury of the resting unicornuate uterus.  (+info)