Neurohypophysial hormones in mammals are synthesized by the ovary and may influence reproductive function. Although arginine vasotocin (AVT) can induce premature oviposition in chickens, the gonadal content of AVT or mesotocin (MT) has not been examined in this species. Ovarian follicles were removed 2 hr before oviposition (-2 hr), immediately after oviposition (0 hr), and 5 hr after oviposition (+5 hr). The theca and granulosa layers of the three largest preovulatory and postovulatory follicles were isolated, extracted, and assayed for immunoreactive AVT and MT. AVT content in the theca and granulosa layers was lowest at -2 hr and increased to maximum levels at +5 hr. Pre- and postovulatory follicles contained similar amounts of AVT. Maximum AVT levels in the theca and granulosa layers were 2.5 ± 0.6 and 1.3 ± 0.2 ng/tissue, respectively. In contrast, theca content of MT was maximal at 0 hr and the highest peptide levels were observed in the largest preovulatory follicle (0.24 ± 0.02 ng/tissue). The results demonstrate that, compared with circulating levels of the hormones, the ovary of the chicken contains high concentrations of AVT and MT. The ovarian content of AVT and MT varies in a different manner in relation to the oviposition cycle.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Animal Science and Zoology