Faculty Research 1970 - 1979


Genetic and endocrine studies of the pregnancy-blocking pheromone of mice.


P C. Hoppe

Document Type


Publication Date



Androsterone, Animal, Dehydroepiandrosterone, Female, Male, Mice, Mice-Inbred-Strains: ph, ur, Pheromones: bi, se, ur, Pregnancy, Pregnancy-Animal: de, Progesterone, SUPPORT-U-S-GOVT-P-H-S, Testosterone

JAX Source

J-Reprod-Fertil. 1975 Oct; 45(1):109-15.


Secretion of the pregnancy-blocking pheromone was stimulated by injection of depo-testosterone cypionate into females and males of inbred strains of mice which do not normally secrete the pheromone. Testosterone treatment of SJL males altered pheromone secretion so that pregnancies were blocked when the stud male was of the same inbred strain; an event that does not normally occur. Injection of epiandrosterone, androstenedione, androsterone or testosterone significantly increased pheromone secretion in SJL females, but progesterone and dehydroepiandrosterone were ineffective. Kidney weights were significantly increased by administration of androgen metabolites and the possibility of the kidney being the site of pheromone synthesis is discussed. The preputial gland can be excluded as the site of pheromone synthesis since males which are hemizygous for the Tabby-J gene and have no preputial glands blocked pregnancies as effectively as their normal littermates. Preliminary results are also presented concerning the isolation of the pregnancy-blocking pheromone from urine. Urine was analysed by gas chromatography and a peak was observed whose concentration could be correlated with secretion of the pheromone, although the compound(s) has not been identified or tested for biological activity.

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