Sexual Receptivity: Facilitation by Medial Preoptic Lesions in Female Rats

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Science  03 Mar 1972:
Vol. 175, Issue 4025, pp. 1003-1005
DOI: 10.1126/science.175.4025.1003


Lesions in the medial preoptic area of ovariectomized female rats reduced the quantity of estrogen needed to induce sexual receptivity in these animals. In addition, the number of days over which receptive behavior could be elicited after a single initial estrogen injection and with subsequent daily progesterone treatment was significantly increased by lesions in the medial preoptic area. These findings support the view that estrogen acts to reduce an inhibitory action that is tonically exerted by the medial preoptic area on pathways mediating estrous behavior.