Cell proliferation in the principal target organs of the dog (beagle) ovary during various periods of the estrous cycle

Acta Anat (Basel). 1984;120(4):207-13. doi: 10.1159/000145922.


Cell proliferation in the principal target organs of the ovary was studied in 7 beagle dogs during proestrus, early estrus, secretory and regressive metestrus. Pulse labelling with (3H)-thymidine and autoradiography were applied and labelling indices were determined. Organs with squamous and with glandular epithelium except the mammary gland showed a proliferation peak during early proestrus, the incidence of labelling being higher in organs with squamous epithelium. During early proestrus the intensity of labelling decreased in organs with squamous epithelium in the following order: vulva, vagina, portio vaginalis, and portio supravaginalis. At this time cell replication was higher in the superficial glands of the cervix and corpus uteri as well as the circular layer of the myometrium compared with values from the basal glands or the longitudinal layer. The steepest decline of the proliferative activity occurred between the proestrous period. While some labelled cells were observed during secretory metestrus, labelling was almost absent during regressive metestrus. By contrast, the mammary gland began to develop at the periovulatory period and was at the height of its proliferative activity during secretory metestrus. It is concluded for species with a long estrous cycle that: (1) the rate of cell replication in the vulva, vagina, uterus and oviduct is at its peak at the beginning of the estrous cycle and declines during proestrus; (2) as compared to observations in species with short estrous cycles, cell proliferation is very low during metestrus.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cell Division
  • Cervix Uteri / cytology
  • Dogs / anatomy & histology
  • Dogs / physiology*
  • Estrus*
  • Female
  • Genitalia, Female / cytology*
  • Mammary Glands, Animal / cytology*
  • Myometrium / cytology
  • Oviducts / cytology
  • Pregnancy
  • Proestrus
  • Uterus / cytology
  • Vagina / cytology