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J. H. MARSTON and M. C. CHANG

Summary.

A simple suture intra-uterine device (IUD), occupying almost the entire length of the uterine horn, was used to study the effect of an IUD upon conception in the rabbit.

After being mated, rabbits were killed at 84, 132, 156 and 180 hr and at 14 days. Additional animals were examined at 14 days after the IUD had been removed 84, 132 and 156 hr after mating.

The IUD was not completely contraceptive, but it induced considerable pre-implantational embryonic death between 156 and 180 hr after mating.

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J. H. MARSTON and W. A. KELLY

Summary.

A simple suture, intra-uterine device (IUD), occupying almost the entire length of one uterine horn, was used to study the effect of an IUD upon conception in the ferret.

After being mated, ferrets were killed at 168 and 240 hr and at 14 days: additional animals were examined at laparotomy 21 days after mating and allowed to complete pregnancy or pseudopregnancy.

At 72 hr after mating, either the IUD or the control ovary and Fallopian tube were removed from two groups of ferrets that were subsequently examined at laparotomy 21 days after mating. After completing their pregnancy or pseudopregnancy these ferrets were mated for a second time and killed at 14 days.

An IUD was not completely contraceptive in the ferret, but it induced pre-implantation elimination of embryos from both uterine horns.

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K. J. BETTERIDGE, W. A. KELLY and J. H. MARSTON

Summary.

The ovaries of sixty-seven rhesus monkeys were examined and photographed at known stages of 121 menstrual cycles. In eighty-three cycles, ovulation was diagnosed but, in thirty-two, the ovary showed a large Graafian follicle and, in six, there was no sign of follicular or luteal activity. The diagnosis of ovulation was confirmed in thirty-four cases by the recovery of an egg or cumulus clot and in another seventeen by histological examination of the ovary. Six diagnoses were supported by evidence from serial observations of the ovary, and a further twenty-six were based on single examinations. Fifteen ovaries were photographed both before and after ovulation.

The extremely variable appearance of proven ovulation points is illustrated and discussed. Morphological changes could not be detected on the surface of Graafian follicles within 24 to 48 hr of ovulation and it was impossible to predict when they would rupture. The age of a corpus luteum could not be estimated from the gross morphology of its ovulation point. Occasionally, corpora lutea were found to persist into succeeding menstrual cycles in forms that could be mistaken for recent ovulation points.

The hazards of diagnosing ovulation by examining the ovaries at laparotomy can be reduced by making serial observations and photographic records.

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J. H. MARSTON, W. A. KELLY and P. ECKSTEIN

Summary.

In the naturally cyclic rhesus monkey, the presence of an intra-uterine device (IUD) did not obviously disturb the processes of (a) transport of the ovulated egg through the Fallopian tube; (b) transport of spermatozoa through the female genital tract; (c) fertilization, and (d) early embryonic development within the Fallopian tube.

Correlation of observations on egg recovery with those on the morphological age of the corpus luteum suggested that transport of the naturally ovulated egg through the Fallopian tube was completed within 3 to 4 days after ovulation in both the control and IUD monkeys.

Eggs could be recovered from the uteri of control monkeys, but usually not from those of IUD monkeys. It was concluded that the presence of an IUD probably induced pre-implantation destruction of embryos within the uterus of the naturally cyclic rhesus monkey.

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W. A. KELLY, J. H. MARSTON and P. ECKSTEIN

Summary.

Morphological observations made on forty-nine uteri from twenty-three control and twenty-six IUD rhesus monkeys killed between Days 15 and 20 of their natural menstrual cycle, were related to the physiological condition of the corresponding ovary.

The only differences between control and IUD specimens of similar luteal age were the presence of (a) a markedly flattened surface epithelium in areas of contact with the IUD; (b) erosion of the surface epithelium and underlying stroma, with fibrosis and extensive leucocytic infiltration, in the lateral angles of the uterine lumen; (c) polymorphonuclear leucocytes lying immediately beneath the surface epithelium, together with variable leucocytic infiltration into the epithelium and the underlying stroma. These changes were not related to the physiological state of the ovary, previous surgery of the uterus, or to the length of time the IUD was retained in the uterine lumen.

A deciduomal reaction could be induced both in ovariectomized, hormonally-stimulated and in naturally cyclic monkeys as a response to endometrial trauma. In both groups, there was no difference in the appearance and proliferation of the deciduomal reaction in control and IUD monkeys.

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R. W. McGAUGHEY, J. H. MARSTON and M. C. CHANG

Summary.

The duration of fertilizing capacity of mouse spermatozoa in the female tract was investigated by insemination of mice following the injection of pmsg and hcg or post partum. It was found that the fertilizing life of mouse spermatozoa in the female tract is about 12 hr rather than 6 hr as previously reported.

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J. H. MARSTON, W. A. KELLY and P. ECKSTEIN

In the rhesus monkey, Macaca mulatta, mechanical traumatization of the endometrium at the sensitive stage of the menstrual cycle, or under the appropriate hormonal conditions, induces a superficial deciduomal reaction which is similar to the epithelial plaque formed during implantation (Hisaw, 1935; Hisaw, Greep & Fevold, 1937; Wislocki & Streeter, 1938; Rossman, 1940). A deciduomal reaction can be induced in the same way when the uterus contains an IUD (Kelly, Marston & Eckstein, 1969) and this suggests that the endometrium's sensitivity and responsiveness to a traumatic stimulus is not affected by the presence of an IUD. Mechanical trauma injures all the endometrial tissues, but the naturally implanting blastocyst provides quite a different stimulus, which is likely to affect just the surface epithelium of the endometrium. We have, therefore, extended our previous study and induced a deciduomal

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J. H. MARSTON, W. A. KELLY and P. ECKSTEIN

Summary.

Attempts to compare the pattern of myometrial activity in restrained, fully conscious, control and IUD rhesus monkeys by using a chronically implanted, strain-gauge transducer attached to the external surface of the uterus, were not successful.

'Egg transfers' were made to the uterus on Days 15 and 18 of the menstrual cycle using fertilized rabbit eggs and radio-active silver-110m-coated, resin spheres as natural and artificial substitutes for monkey eggs. There was no marked difference in the rate of egg recovery from control and IUD monkeys at 48 hr after transfer.

It was concluded that premature expulsion of the eggs from the uterus was not the principal contraceptive effect of an IUD in the rhesus monkey.

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J. H. Marston, R. Penn and P. C. Sivelle

To date there are only two reports of attempts to transfer embryos in or between individual primates (Steptoe & Edwards, 1976; Kraemer, Moore & Kramen, 1976). The purpose of this communication is to report the successful recovery and re-transfer of fertilized eggs in the rhesus monkey (Macaca mulatta).

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M. C. CHANG, DOROTHY M. HUNT and J. H. MARSTON

Hybrid fertilization can occur between several mammalian species (Chang & Hancock, 1967), but there is no conclusive proof that spermatozoa need to be capacitated before they can effect such fertilization. The time required for hybrid capacitation and the ability of spermatozoa to retain their fertilizing capacity in the female tract of another species has not been studied. Nevertheless, it has been shown that rabbit spermatozoa can slowly complete part, if not all, of their capacitation for normal fertilization in the uterus of the rat and bitch (Bedford & Shalkovsky, 1967; Hamner, Jones & Sojka, 1968). This paper reports (1) the capacitation time for hybrid fertilization of snowshoe hare spermatozoa in the rabbit Fallopian tube, and (2) their fertilizing life in the female tract of the domesticated rabbit.

Sexually mature snowshoe hares, Lepus americanus, were killed or