Letter | Published:

Induction of Lactogenesis and Abortion by Prostaglandin F in Pregnant Rats

Abstract

THE withdrawal of ovarian progesterone at the end of pregnancy seems to be the essential step in the initiation of lactation in pregnant rats1–5. Although there is a decrease of plasma progesterone concentration before parturition6,7, the mechanisms involved in the regression of the corpus luteum at parturition are unknown. It is known8–10 that the uterus is concerned with the regression of the corpus luteum in the rat and the uterine luteolytic seems to involve a substance transported in the blood10. The discovery of prostaglandins in menstrual fluid and human endometrium11,12 and the luteolytic action of prostaglandin F2 (PGF) demonstrated in pseudopregnant rats13 and normal guinea-pig14 indicate a possible participation of prostaglandin at the end of pregnancy. The high concentration of PGF in the amniotic fluid during labour15 gives support to this hypothesis.

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