Folliclestimulating hormone luteinizing hormone and human chorionic gonadotrophin

FSH and LH play critical roles in the development and maintenance of male and, particularly, female reproductive function (Box 11.3). hCG, produced by pregnant women, plays a central role in maintaining support systems for the developing embryo during early pregnancy. All three are

Table 11.8 The gonadotropins, their site of synthesis and their major biological effects


Site of synthesis

Major effects

PMSG (horses only) Inhibin


Pituitary Pituitary

Endometrial cups Gonads


Stimulates follicular growth (female) Enhanced spermatogenesis (male) Induction of ovulation (female) Synthesis of testosterone (male) Maintenance of the corpus luteum in pregnant females Maintenance of pregnancy in equids Inhibition of FSH synthesis Probably tumour repressor Stimulation of FSH synthesis

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