Arginine Vasotocin: Effects on Development of Reproductive Organs

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Science  06 Dec 1974:
Vol. 186, Issue 4167, pp. 938-939
DOI: 10.1126/science.186.4167.938


Immature 25-day-old mice were injected daily with 1 microgram of arginine vasotocin for 3 or 4 days and killed 24 hours after the last injection. The ovaries were 30 percent smaller in treated females than in controls. The ventral prostates and accessory organs (seminal vesicles and coagulating glands) were less than half the size of these structures in control males. Similar results were observed when 15-day-old mice were given similar injections and killed 2 weeks after the last injection; furthermore, testis weights were 28 percent smaller than those of controls. It is speculated that arginine vasotocin, which has been found in mammalian pineal glands, might mediate effects of the pineal gland on normal sexual development.