Partial development of the steroidogenic ultrastructural features in degenerative corpora lutea after a single injection of pituitary extract in the Western painted turtle (Chrysemys picta)

I. Y. Mahmoud, T. Ba-Omar, A. AlKindi

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3 Citations (Scopus)


Pituitary glands were removed from sexually mature female turtles (Chrysemys picta) and they were injected intraperitoneally (i.p.) into other mature females of the same species (experimental). In addition mature females of the same species received saline injection only (controls). Initially all the turtles used in this study were steroidogenically inactive with corpora lutea already undergoing luteolysis (degeneration) as these turtles had ovioposited their eggs approximately 2 weeks earlier. Forty-eight hour post injection the corpora lutea were removed from the control and experimental turtles. In the experimental turtles, the lutein granulosa cells developed ultrastructural features such as tubular and cisternal smooth endoplasmic reticulum (SER) and mitochondria with tubular cristae associated with lipid droplets. However, the controls maintained degenerative corpora lutea without steroidogenic ultrastructural features. The circulating progesterone (Pro) levels in the experimental turtles were significantly higher than the controls (P <0.049). Although the 48 h development of steroidogenic ultrastructural features in the lutein granulosa cells was only partial in development, the effect of the pituitary taken from the inactive donor triggered an activating process within a short period, clear evidence of gonadotropic effect on the inactive corpora lutea. The present data offer interesting information on the short-term effect of gonadotropins during the non-reproductive period. This information may have useful implication under natural conditions particularly during the onset of a new reproductive cycle where the ovary is still inactive.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)171-176
Number of pages6
JournalTissue and Cell
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2006



  • Corpora lutea
  • Lutein granulose
  • Western painted turtle

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Insect Science
  • Cell Biology

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