The overall purpose of this research is to investigate the effects of sexual behavior on the initiation of pregnancy in female mammals. Specifically, we will analyze the relationship between socio-sexual behavior and sperm transport in the female rat. There are three related aspects to this research program: On the organismic level, we will examine the effects of copulatory stimulation on the transport of sperm through the cervix and uterus and would examine some of the mediators of this effect. We would also examine the interrelationship between copulatory behavior and one of these physiological processes, uterine contractions. On the social-behavioral level, we will examine the ways in which the relationship between males influences the probability that a given male's sperm will ultimately fertilize the female's ova, and the characteristics of that fertilization. On the level of physiological mechanism, we will study the properties of the female rat's reproductive system that contribute to sperm transport and fertility. The purpose of this third area is to understand the mechanisms by which behavioral and physiological events are integrated into the orderly process by which sperm are transported from the male through the female's reproductive system. This project represents an integrated attempt to deal with one aspect of the organization and function of reproductive behavior in mammals.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health & Human Development (NICHD)
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Biopsychology Study Section (BPO)
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University of Pennsylvania
Schools of Arts and Sciences
United States
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Moody, K M; Adler, N T (1995) The role of the uterus and cervix in systemic oxytocin-PGE2 facilitated lordosis behavior. Horm Behav 29:571-80
Terkel, J; Witcher, J A; Adler, N T (1990) Evidence for ""memory"" of cervical stimulation for the promotion of pregnancy in rats. Horm Behav 24:40-9
Diakow, C; Woicyk, W; McEachron, D L et al. (1989) Pattern of [14C]2-deoxyglucose concentration associated with potentiation of reproductive behavior by prostaglandin E2. Behav Neurosci 103:1028-34
Schull, J; McEachron, D L; Adler, N T et al. (1988) Effects of thyroidectomy, parathyroidectomy and lithium on circadian wheelrunning in rats. Physiol Behav 42:33-9
Toner, J P; Attas, A I; Adler, N T (1987) Transcervical sperm transport in the rat: the roles of pre-ejaculatory behavior and copulatory plug fit. Physiol Behav 39:371-5
Toner, J P; Adler, N T (1986) Influence of mating and vaginocervical stimulation on rat uterine activity. J Reprod Fertil 78:239-49
Toner, J P; Adler, N T (1986) The pre-ejaculatory behavior of male and female rats affects the number of sperm in the vagina and uterus. Physiol Behav 36:363-7
Toner, J P; Adler, N T (1985) The role of uterine luminal fluid in uterine contractions, sperm transport and fertility of rats. J Reprod Fertil 74:295-302
Gilbert, A N; Rosenwasser, A M; Adler, N T (1985) Timing of parturition and postpartum mating in Norway rats: interaction of an interval timer and a circadian gate. Physiol Behav 34:61-3
Toner, J P; Adler, N T (1985) Potency of rat ejaculations varies with their order and with male age. Physiol Behav 35:113-5