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PART XII – Female Reproduction

Chapter 125 – Folliculogenesis, Ovulation, and Luteogenesis

R. Jeffrey Chang,
Gregory F. Erickson

  Ovary Anatomy and Histology
  Preantral Follicles
  Antral or Graafian Follicles


  The Growth Factor Concept

During the reproductive years, the human ovary has two primary functions: (1) to produce regularly a single graafian follicle that secretes estradiol (E2) and ovulates a mature oocyte at about midpoint in the menstrual cycle; and (2) to produce an endocrine structure, the corpus luteum, which secretes large amounts of E2 and progesterone (P4), which act on the uterus to prepare it for implantation of the embryo. A major feature of this ovarian activity is its cyclic nature, a feature that is strikingly reflected in the growth and development of the dominant follicle and corpus luteum, respectively. These cyclic changes are regulated predominantly by changing concentrations of the anterior pituitary …