In vitro studies of ovulation in the perfused rabbit ovary

C. J. Lambertsen, D. F. Greenbaum, K. H. Wright, E. E. Wallach

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

36 Scopus citations


A system has been developed for the perfusion of the rabbit ovary in vitro. At laparotomy, the ovarian artery is canulated and perfused with M 199 tissue culture medium containing insulin and heparin, then removed with its vascular pedicle intact. Perfusion at 37°C is maintained by using a capillary oxygenator and Buchler roller pump. The functional integrity of the perfused ovary is confirmed by serial determinations of the perfusate pH, glucose and lactate concentrations, and by ovarian histology. This in vitro model was used to study the mechanism of ovulation. One group of isolated rabbits received human chorionic gonadotropin (50 IU, intravenously) and, 8 hours later, one ovary was removed and perfused; the contralateral ovary remained in situ, serving as an in vivo control. Serial observations for follicle development and rupture were made over the subsequent 7 hour interval. The occurrence of ovulation in vitro was documented by time lapse photography. In each animal, comparisons made between the in vitro and in vivo ovary indicated that the rate and time of follicle maturation and ovulation were comparable. Ovulation occurred between 10 and 15 hours after administration of human chorionic gonadotropin in both preparations.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)178-187
Number of pages10
JournalFertility and sterility
Issue number2
StatePublished - 1976
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Reproductive Medicine
  • Obstetrics and Gynecology


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