Journal article

Regulation of diapause in carnivores

JC Fenelon, PL Lefevre, A Banerjee, BD Murphy



Embryonic diapause is an evolutionary strategy to ensure that offspring are born when maternal and environmental conditions are optimal for survival. In many species of carnivores, obligate embryonic diapause occurs in every gestation. In mustelids, the regulation of diapause and reactivation is influenced by photoperiod, which then acts to regulate the secretion of pituitary prolactin. Prolactin in turn regulates ovarian steroid function. Reciprocal embryo transplant studies indicate that this state of embryonic arrest is conferred by uterine conditions and is presumed to be due to a lack of specific factors necessary for continued development. Studies of global gene expression in the mink ..

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University of Melbourne Researchers


Funding Acknowledgements

The immense intellectual contribution to our studies of diapause by Dr. Rodney Mead and the late Drs. Patrick Concannon and Will Moger is acknowledged. The excellent technical assistance of Mira Dobias, Vickie Roussel and Fanny Morin was essential to the success of the investigations described herein. This research was made possible by the continual generous support of the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada.