Research Topic

New Insights on Seminal Factors Signaling Female Reproduction in Mammals

About this Research Topic

Figure from the study by Maranesi et al. 2018 New insights on a NGF-mediated pathway to induce ovulation in rabbits (Oryctolagus cuniculus). Biol Reprod. 2018 98:634-643.

Although significant advances have been made during the last century regarding our knowledge of the control of female reproduction, there are still several aspects which have not been deeply studied. One of such areas is the influence that factors (i.e. proteins, growth factors, interleukins, etc.) present in the seminal fluid once they are deposited in the female reproductive tract during ejaculation. Several reproductive phenomena are potentially influenced or modified by seminal factors of different chemical nature. In many mammalian species, reproductive processes such as ovulation, fertility, embryo survival and implantation are induced or enhanced. In the last decade one of the most studied seminal chemical signs is nerve growth factor (NGF). This protein factor is present in high concentrations in the semen of several induced ovulation species and can effectively trigger ovulation. However, besides NGF several other seminal signals modulate female reproduction in many mammalian species, for which their study warrants further investigation.

The main goal of this Research Topic is to deepen the knowledge regarding seminal factors that influence different female reproductive processes, to understand their mechanism of action and potentially interactions between different molecules. It is pertinent to review and update all the current knowledge regarding:
a) the different molecules present in the seminal fluid that have been identified as potential modulators of reproductive processes in the female upon copulation,
b) the taxonomical range of mammalian species in which these molecules and their effects have been identified,
c) the specific mechanism of action of such molecules at physiological and molecular level if known,
d) the detailed effects on the female reproductive tract or reproductive phenomena that consequently enhance and
e) the potential interactions or synergism that could exist among such molecules.
To compile this valuable information into a Research Topic will enable researchers from different fields of study, working on several different animal species, to access original discoveries in an emerging field of study that could change existing paradigms in the control of female reproduction.

The main focus of this Research Topic is to extend the knowledge about the complexity of issues such as:
- Ovulation
- Corpus luteum development and regression
- Aspects regarding the functionality of the hypothalamus-pituitary-gonadal axis especially, though not exclusively, those OIFs related.

Research articles or reviews covering these topics evaluated in tube, in vitro, ex vivo, and in vivo, focusing on:
- Imaging techniques
- Molecular biology
- Protein analysis
- Molecular assays
These would all be welcome for inclusion in order to represent the prominent theme of this Research Topic.

Studies involving the use or providing information on the use of OIFs for preventive and / or therapeutic purposes in the context of problems related to the reproductive system and / or attached glands will also be welcome; as well as studies that allow for the improvement of currently existing reproductive biotechnologies.


Keywords: Nerve growth factor, seminal plasma, ovulation-inducing factors, ovary, hypothalamus-pituitary-gonadal axis


Important Note: All contributions to this Research Topic must be within the scope of the section and journal to which they are submitted, as defined in their mission statements. Frontiers reserves the right to guide an out-of-scope manuscript to a more suitable section or journal at any stage of peer review.

Figure from the study by Maranesi et al. 2018 New insights on a NGF-mediated pathway to induce ovulation in rabbits (Oryctolagus cuniculus). Biol Reprod. 2018 98:634-643.

Although significant advances have been made during the last century regarding our knowledge of the control of female reproduction, there are still several aspects which have not been deeply studied. One of such areas is the influence that factors (i.e. proteins, growth factors, interleukins, etc.) present in the seminal fluid once they are deposited in the female reproductive tract during ejaculation. Several reproductive phenomena are potentially influenced or modified by seminal factors of different chemical nature. In many mammalian species, reproductive processes such as ovulation, fertility, embryo survival and implantation are induced or enhanced. In the last decade one of the most studied seminal chemical signs is nerve growth factor (NGF). This protein factor is present in high concentrations in the semen of several induced ovulation species and can effectively trigger ovulation. However, besides NGF several other seminal signals modulate female reproduction in many mammalian species, for which their study warrants further investigation.

The main goal of this Research Topic is to deepen the knowledge regarding seminal factors that influence different female reproductive processes, to understand their mechanism of action and potentially interactions between different molecules. It is pertinent to review and update all the current knowledge regarding:
a) the different molecules present in the seminal fluid that have been identified as potential modulators of reproductive processes in the female upon copulation,
b) the taxonomical range of mammalian species in which these molecules and their effects have been identified,
c) the specific mechanism of action of such molecules at physiological and molecular level if known,
d) the detailed effects on the female reproductive tract or reproductive phenomena that consequently enhance and
e) the potential interactions or synergism that could exist among such molecules.
To compile this valuable information into a Research Topic will enable researchers from different fields of study, working on several different animal species, to access original discoveries in an emerging field of study that could change existing paradigms in the control of female reproduction.

The main focus of this Research Topic is to extend the knowledge about the complexity of issues such as:
- Ovulation
- Corpus luteum development and regression
- Aspects regarding the functionality of the hypothalamus-pituitary-gonadal axis especially, though not exclusively, those OIFs related.

Research articles or reviews covering these topics evaluated in tube, in vitro, ex vivo, and in vivo, focusing on:
- Imaging techniques
- Molecular biology
- Protein analysis
- Molecular assays
These would all be welcome for inclusion in order to represent the prominent theme of this Research Topic.

Studies involving the use or providing information on the use of OIFs for preventive and / or therapeutic purposes in the context of problems related to the reproductive system and / or attached glands will also be welcome; as well as studies that allow for the improvement of currently existing reproductive biotechnologies.


Keywords: Nerve growth factor, seminal plasma, ovulation-inducing factors, ovary, hypothalamus-pituitary-gonadal axis


Important Note: All contributions to this Research Topic must be within the scope of the section and journal to which they are submitted, as defined in their mission statements. Frontiers reserves the right to guide an out-of-scope manuscript to a more suitable section or journal at any stage of peer review.

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Submission Deadlines

20 June 2021 Abstract
19 November 2021 Manuscript

Participating Journals

Manuscripts can be submitted to this Research Topic via the following journals:

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Topic Editors

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Submission Deadlines

20 June 2021 Abstract
19 November 2021 Manuscript

Participating Journals

Manuscripts can be submitted to this Research Topic via the following journals:

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