Reproductive Physiology of Marsupials

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Cambridge University Press, Jan 30, 1987 - Nature - 476 pages
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Marsupials differ from most other mammals in their method of reproduction, in that they have chosen, in an evolutionary sense, to develop lactation rather than placentation for the nurture of their young. The neonate is therefore born with a mixture of advanced and embryonic characters, and yet is readily accessible within the pouch, providing a unique system for the study of the ontogeny of various physiological and endocrinological parameters. Marsupials are therefore ideal animals for research into mammalian reproductive physiology. The results of this exciting new research are summarized in this book by two of the foremost workers in the field. Individual chapters analyse the genetic and hormonal control of sexual differentiation, male and female reproductive structures and their functions, the role of the corpus luteum in the oestrous cycle and pregnancy, the hormonal control of embryonic diapause and the role of the marsupial placenta in the development of the embryo. This book is more than just a straightforward review of marsupial reproduction for its detailed analyses and broad comparative coverage will attract mammalogists and reproductive physiologists with a wide range of research interests.
  

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Contents

Breeding biology of marsupials by family
14
Sexual differentiation and development
95
Male anatomy and spermatogenesis
124
The female urogenital tract and oogenesis
172
Ovarian function and control
203
Pregnancy and parturition
258
Lactation
343
Neuroendocrine control of seasonal breeding
373
Marsupials and the evolution of mammalian reproduction
396
References
424
Index
470
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About the author (1987)

Hugh Tyndale-Biscoe has, for more than 40 years, been at the cutting edge of marsupial research, from brushtail possums in New Zealand, to quokkas in Western Australia, and from tammar wallabies in New South Wales to opossums in South America. His original text, Life of Marsupials, published in 1973 was the first textbook on marsupials. In this completely re-written edition, he brings a lifetime's experience and masterly insights into the lives of this unusual group of mammals

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