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B. N. HEMSWORTH

Summary.

Closely related members of a homologous series of alkane sulphonic esters were administered to pregnant rats and their effect on oogenesis and fertility of female offspring studied. A marked antifertility action due to the diesters n = 1, 3, 4 and the branched chain monoester isopropyl methanesulphonate was referable to interference with oogonia. Methyl and ethyl monoesters also had an antifertility action although their effect was less evident.

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B. N. HEMSWORTH

Summary.

Certain alkane sulphonic esters in pregnant rats cause a variety of embryopathies ranging from death in utero and congenital malformation to subtle impairment of gonadal form and function. The structure-activity relationship of a homologous series of compounds has been studied.

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B. N. HEMSWORTH and H. JACKSON

Summary.

Young male rats were exposed to Busulphan on selected days between the 5th day of foetal life and Day 15 post partum, inclusive. The drug apparently had no effect on the foetal sex cells when administered to the pregnant female between Days 5 and 7 post coitum. Later in pregnancy a destructive action became rapidly more powerful. The developing sex cells of the foetus were destroyed after exposure to the drug from Day 13 post coitum onwards. Supporting cells, which proliferate simultaneously with the developing sex cells, appeared to be quite indifferent to this treatment with Busulphan. Treatment during the neonatal period resulted in a selective effect on the germ cells. It was found that the sensitivity of these cells decreased rapidly after birth. The relationship between testicular damage and fertility is discussed.

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B. N. HEMSWORTH and H. JACKSON

Summary.

Female rats were exposed to Busulphan on selected days between the 5th day of foetal life and Day 15 post partum, inclusive. The drug apparently had no effect on the foetal sex cells when administered to the pregnant female between Days 5 and 7 post coitum. Later in pregnancy a destructive action became rapidly more powerful. So far as the developing ovary is concerned it would seem that the action of Busulphan at this dose level, i.e. 10 mg/kg intraperitoneally, is confined to the precursor of the oocyte, namely the oogonium and that when these cells enter meiotic prophase on about the 17th day of foetal life there is a marked decrease in their sensitivity to the action of the drug. The effect of the treatment on fertility has also been studied.