Pituitary control of ovarian activity in the lizard, Agama agama



The principal ovarian structures in Agama agama are non-yolky and yolky follicles, corpora lutea and atretic follicles. Hypophysectomy affects all stages of vitellogenesis and follicular atresia results. Atresia involves resorption and digestion of yolk by the granulosa cells, which eventually undergo a fatty degeneration. Immature follicles and corpora lutea are not affected by hypophysectomy.

Injections of 0.2 mg FSH (NIH-FSH-S3 ovine) on alternate days for 14 days not only maintain vitellogenesis in hypophysectomized animals, but also tend to overstimulate the small follicles to synthesize yolk. A similar dose of LH(NIH-LH-SII ovine) fails to maintain vitellogenesis in hypophysectomized animals, while a higher dose of 0.4 mg LH tends to overstimulate the small follicles. An unusual rupture of yolky follicles in FSH injected lizards is reported and a possible development of such follicles into corpora lutea is discussed.