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  • Author: F. J. Bourne x
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R. Qvist, L. F. Blackwell, H. Bourne and J. B. Brown

Summary. An in-vitro culture system was developed in which primary mouse follicles from 12–16-day-old mice grew to the preovulatory stage. The important determinants of growth in culture were the inclusion of stroma with the primary follicles, the age of the mouse, the presence of FSH and LH, the use of culture dishes with a hydrophobic membrane and the use of post-menopausal human serum to supply growth factors. During culture the pieces of ovarian tissue containing the primary follicles coalesced to form characteristic spherical clusters. The cultured follicles appeared to be normal as determined by the appearance and organization of the granulosa cells, the appearance of the antrum and the accompanying steroidogenesis, but the ova had not resumed meiosis. The results show that the growth of mouse follicles starting from the primary stage is critically dependent on adequate concentrations of FSH.

Keywords: FSH; mouse; culture; follicle; in vitro

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E. D. Watson, C. R. Stokes, J. S. E. David and F. J. Bourne

Summary. The bactericidal and phagocytic activities of blood neutrophils suspended in uterine washings and the mobilization of neutrophils into the uterine lumen were studied in ovariectomized mares receiving oestradiol benzoate (N = 4), progesterone (N = 4) or oily vehicle (N = 4). Uterine lavage was performed sequentially up to 144 h after induction of endometritis by intrauterine infusion of glycogen (1%). There was no significant difference between the 3 groups in speed of mobilization of neutrophils into the uterus in the first 6 h after infusion but there were significantly more uterine luminal neutrophils in progesterone-treated than in oestradiol-treated mares by 24 h after infusion (P < 0·01). Uterine washings collected from progesterone-treated mares at 0, 24 and 144 h were significantly worse at promoting bactericidal activity by neutrophils than washings from oestradiol-treated and control mares (P < 0·001). In oestrogen-treated and control mares bactericidal activity had increased by 144 h but in progesterone-treated mares bactericidal activity remained low. Neither treatment nor time affected the ability of washings to opsonize yeast blastospores. Elevated concentrations of progesterone in plasma were therefore associated with decreased bactericidal activity of neutrophils suspended in uterine washings but the generation of C3b in washings did not appear to be affected by hormone treatment.