Plasma sex hormone and lipid patterns in normal and restricted-ovulator chicken hens

Gen Comp Endocrinol. 1984 Aug;55(2):280-8. doi: 10.1016/0016-6480(84)90113-8.


The relationships of circulating estradiol, estrone, and progesterone levels to plasma lipid levels and ovulatory frequency were studies in sexually mature hens. New Hampshire X Columbian (NH X C) cross-bred hens, which have a relatively low frequency of ovulation, were compared with pure-bred White Leghorn (WLH) hens with a high frequency of ovulation. A mutant strain of WLH hen, exhibiting the phenotypic characteristic of restricted ovulation (RO) was also tested. It was fund that NH X C hens had a basal circulating estrogen: progesterone ratio 2.7 X greater than WLH hens. Furthermore, WLH-RO hens exhibited 3 X HIGHER BASAL PLASMA ESTROGEN AND 4 X lower progesterone than normal WLH hens, resulting in an estrogen:progesterone ratio which was l2.6X higher. In additional, WLH-RO hens did not exhibit any diurnal variation in circulating progesterone levels, and had smaller primary sex organs and also intermittent hyperlipidemia. It is concluded that the basal circulating estrogen:progesterone ratio in sexually mature hens is a good indicator of ovulatory frequency, and that the magnitude of the ratio is determined primarily by the progesterone component.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Aging
  • Animals
  • Chickens
  • Cholesterol / blood
  • Estradiol / blood
  • Estrone / blood
  • Female
  • Gonadal Steroid Hormones / blood*
  • Lipids / blood*
  • Ovulation*
  • Phenotype
  • Progesterone / blood
  • Radioimmunoassay
  • Triglycerides / blood


  • Gonadal Steroid Hormones
  • Lipids
  • Triglycerides
  • Estrone
  • Progesterone
  • Estradiol
  • Cholesterol