Follicle development in pigs: State of the art

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Understanding the factors and pathways involved with recruitment, atresia, and selection of follicles in the pig, may provide insight into approaches to limit fertility failures. Antral follicles depend upon FSH to the 2–3 mm stage, become codependent upon LH at 4–5 mm, and rely on LH when >5 mm. Within the follicle, gonadotropin binding, steroids, growth factors, and inhibin interact to determine the fate of the follicle. Continuous recruitment appears likely for follicles, and once >1 mm, they may have a limited period for survival, before selection or atresia. If true, then the number of healthy follicles that can respond to a hormone signal for selection, could vary by size and development stage. Which follicles are selected may depend upon their age, numbers of capillaries, granulosa and thecal cells, and FSH and LH receptors. This might also suggest that factors such as management, nutrition, and stress in prior weeks, could affect different cohorts of follicles to determine which of those from the ovarian population will be selected.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)480-490
Number of pages11
JournalMolecular reproduction and development
Issue number7
StatePublished - Jul 2023


  • FSH
  • follicles
  • pig
  • selection

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Genetics
  • Cell Biology
  • Developmental Biology


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