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  • Author: J. R. HINCHLIFFE x
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J. R. HINCHLIFFE and A. M. EL-SHERSHABY

Summary.

Arachis oil instilled into the uterus of sensitized mice was localized mesometrially or, more commonly, antimesometrially, suggesting that the uterus is polarized in its capacity to respond since implantation chambers only form antimesometrially. Epithelial breakdown occurred only within the `implantation chamber', but cell death took place more rapidly than in normal pregnancy and was complete at only 5 to 9 hr after the Pontamine Blue reaction. Between 19 and 43 hr after oil instillation, the antimesometrial epithelial cells lost contact with each other and initially were characterized by distended rough endoplasmic reticulum and Golgi body, lipid droplet accumulation and ribosome segregation. At a later stage of deterioration, epithelial cell contents were scattered into the uterine lumen where polymorphonuclear leucocytes and monocytes were also found, probably involved in ingesting the cellular debris. There was no evidence of increased size of lysosomal dense bodies or of the formation of autophagosomes in dying epithelial cells; suggesting that the mechanism of epithelial death in the oil-induced reaction is not identical to that of normal pregnancy.

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C. A. FINN and J. R. HINCHLIFFE

Summary.

  1. Using a histochemical technique, alkaline phosphatase has been shown to appear in the stroma of the mouse uterus during implantation and after initiation of the oil-induced deciduoma.
  2. In sections of pregnant uteri the enzyme first appeared on the 5th day after mating as a small crescentic area in the stroma on the antimesometrial side of the uterus close to the implanting blastocyst.
  3. In pseudopregnant mice after instillation of oil into the uterine lumen (on the 4th day) a similar crescentic area of alkaline phosphatase activity appeared around the uterine lumen on the antimesometrial side on the 5th day.
  4. The epithelium in both cases is intact on the 5th day but degeneration occurs on the antimesometrial side on the 6th day. This suggests that epithelial degeneration is an inherent property of the uterus during the period of implantation, and is not directly caused by the activities of the giant cells of the trophoblast.
  5. There was no alkaline phosphatase activity in the uterine stroma of pseudopregnant untreated mice on the 4th, 5ht and 6th days after sterile mating and the epithelium showed no evidence of degeneration. Further, injection of oil into the uteri of ovariectomized mice failed to cause epithelial degeneration or result in alkaline phosphatase activity in the stroma.
  6. The bearing of these results on the role of the blastocyst in implantation is discussed.

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C. A. FINN and J. R. HINCHLIFFE

Summary.

It has been found that in the majority of cases the injection of oil into the uterus of mice on the 4th day of pseudopregnancy results in the formation of several discrete decidual swellings along the length of the uterus. Histochemical and histological examination on the 6th day of pseudopregnancy reveals that a structure closely resembling an implantation chamber is formed in the middle of the swellings. There is a down-pushing of the lumen from the mesometrial side into the centre of the swelling and breakdown of epithelium on the antimesometrial side of the chamber. The decidual tissue around the base of the chamber contains both glycogen and pas-positive diastase-fast material, similar to that found around an implanting blastocyst.

The lumen of the artificial implantation chamber contains relatively large quantities of a secretion rich in protein and a diastase-fast pas-positive material, probably a neutral mucopolysaccharide-protein complex. This secretion is also found in natural implantation chambers on the 6th day of pregnancy, though in much smaller quantities. It is suggested that it is a nutritive substance secreted by the uterus as part of the implantation reaction and normally taken up by the blastocyst. It is concluded that the 4-day pseudopregnant mouse uterus has the competence to react to a natural or unnatural decidual stimulus with the formation of implantation chambers.