Regulation of corpus luteum life span

Published on November 30, 2020   50 min

Other Talks in the Series: The Female Reproductive System: from Basic Science to Fertility Treatments

My name is Rina Meidan. I am professor of Reproductive Endocrinology at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem in Israel. The topic of my presentation would be regulation of corpus luteum life span.
In the picture above, it depicts from left to right corpus luteum development. The corpus luteum secretes progesterone which is essential for maintenance of pregnancy in all mammalian species. Corpus luteum is a Latin term, and it means yellow body. The yellow color of the corpus luteum comes from lutein pigmentation.
This is the life cycle of the corpus luteum. It is a transient gland. It develops from the follicular cells remaining after ovulation. The CL grows and matures, reaching a peak or a plateau phase of progesterone. Then the CL reaches this decision point here, where it either continues to survive and develop, and this is if in the case of pregnancy. If fertilization occurs and pregnancy is established, the corpus luteum would remain. It would be maintained for different duration depending on the species. In rat and mice, it is maintained for the whole duration of pregnancy which is about 20 days. In women, it is maintained during the first semester. If fertilization does not occur, the CL must be eliminated in a process that we will describe in length called luteolysis.