Series: Advances in Organ Biology

One of the mysteries of mammalian reproduction is the physiologic process that determines the length of gestation. The proper timing of birth ensures that the young individual is sufficiently developed to survive and adapt in the extrauterine environment, and that the mother is capable to provide nutrition and protection to the newborn. This volume summarizes new knowledge obtained by many researchers seeking to unravel the complex mechanisms that contribute to the maintenance and termination of pregnancy. The most important common goal of these efforts is to reduce the incidence of preterm birth, which is the leading cause of perinatal morbidity and mortality in numerous countries.
Separate chapters are devoted to the best-studied animal models of parturition. In sheep, the fetus is in control of the timing of its own birth, while in avian species, oviposition is evidently determined by the female laying the fertilised egg. In humans and non-human primates, the roles of the fetus and the mother are more balanced, and involve a complicated and poorly understood unterplay between the mother, the fetus, and the placenta. Some major aspects of these interactions, such as trophoblast function, myometrial contractility, and the endocrine-paracrine systems, are discussed in further chapters.

Book Series: The Biology of the Eye

Most recent volume


Volume 10. The Biology of the Eye

Published: 9th December 2005 Editor: Jorge Fischbarg
Why the eye is round Tears and their secretion Corneal epithelium and corneal stroma Corneal endothelium Ciliary body and ciliary epithelium The lens The vitreous The retina Retinal pigment epithelium The choroid and optic nerve head Innate and adaptive immunity of the eye. Immunology of the eye with focus on control of intraocular inflammatory responses Drug delivery to the eye The sclera

Additional volumes


Volume 9. The Renal Circulation

Published: 20th December 2000 Editors: W.P. Anderson R.G. Evans K.M. Stevenson

Volume 8. A Functional View of Smooth Muscle

Published: 10th May 2000 Editors: L. Barr G. Christ

Volume 7. Coronary Angiogenesis

Published: 30th April 1999 Editor: K. Rakusan

Volume 5. Molecular and Cellular Biology of Bone, Part A

Published: 30th December 1998 Editors: M. Zaidi O.A. Adebanjo C.L.H. Huang

Volume 6. Myocardial Preservation and Cellular Adaptation

Published: 18th December 1998 Editor: D.K. Das

Volume 4. Heart Metabolism in Failure

Published: 21st September 1998 Editors: R.A. Altschuld R.A. Haworth

Volume 3. Retinoids: Their Physiological Function and Therapeutic Potential

Published: 30th October 1997 Editor: G.V. Sherbet

Volume 2. The Synapse: In Development, Health, and Disease

Published: 16th May 1997 Editors: B.W. Festoff D. Hantai B.A. Citron

Volume 1. Pregnancy and Parturition

Published: 25th June 1996 Editor: T. Zakar