PLACENTAL TRANSFER OF OXYTOCIN IN THE GUINEA-PIG AND ITS RELEASE DURING PARTURITION

in Journal of Endocrinology
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SUMMARY

Oxytocin levels in pregnant and parturient guinea-pigs were studied by means of a sensitive and specific radioimmunoassay. Oxytocin was released from the maternal pituitary in substantial amount only during the expulsive phase of labour, when the mean concentration in carotid arterial blood in five animals was 503 pg/ml plasma (range 96–2900 pg/ml). Oxytocin was not found in the plasma of the first born at the moment of birth, but was usually detected in amounts ranging from 96 to 455 pg/ml in those born subsequently. The mean half-time of oxytocin in the maternal circulation during late pregnancy was 62 ± 7·5 (s.e.m., n = 5) s. In-vivo experiments showed that the placenta was permeable to oxytocin in both directions.

 

      Society for Endocrinology

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