Mesonephric duct

The mesonephric duct (also known as the Wolffian duct, archinephric duct, Leydig's duct or nephric duct) is a paired organ found in mammals including humans during embryogenesis. Wolffian structures are male urogenital structures that include the epididymis, vas deferens, and seminal vesicles that differentiate from this structure.

Mesonephric duct
Urogenital sinus of female human embryo of eight and a half to nine weeks old.
Transverse section of a chick embryo of forty-five hours' incubation.
Details
Carnegie stage11
Days28
Precursorintermediate mesoderm
Gives rise tovas deferens, seminal vesicles, epididymis
Identifiers
Latinductus mesonephricus; ductus Wolffi
MeSHD014928
TEE5.6.2.0.0.0.4
Anatomical terminology

The mesonephric duct connects the primitive kidney, the mesonephros, to the cloaca and serves as the anlage for certain male reproductive organs.

Structure

The mesonephric duct connects the primitive kidney, the mesonephros, to the cloaca and serves as the anlage for certain male reproductive organs.

Development

In both the male and the female the mesonephric duct develops into the trigone of urinary bladder, a part of the bladder wall. However, further development differentiates between the sexes in the development of the urinary and reproductive organs.

Male

In a male, it develops into a system of connected organs between the efferent ducts of the testis and the prostate, namely the epididymis, the vas deferens, and the seminal vesicle. The prostate forms from the urogenital sinus and the efferent ducts form from the mesonephric tubules.

For this it is critical that the ducts are exposed to testosterone during embryogenesis. Testosterone binds to and activates androgen receptor, affecting intracellular signals and modifying the expression of numerous genes.[1]

In the mature male, the function of this system is to store and mature sperm, and provide accessory semen fluid.

Female

In the female, with the absence of anti-Müllerian hormone secretion by the Sertoli cells and subsequent Müllerian apoptosis, the Wolffian duct regresses, and inclusions may persist. The epoophoron and Skene's glands may be present. Also, lateral to the wall of the vagina a Gartner's duct or cyst could develop as a remnant.

Function

Sexual differentiation

History

It is named after Caspar Friedrich Wolff who described the mesonephros and its ducts in his dissertation in 1759.[2]

Additional images

See also

References

  1. Hannema SE, Print CG, Charnock-Jones DS, Coleman N, Hughes IA (2006). "Changes in gene expression during Wolffian duct development". Horm. Res. 65 (4): 200–9. doi:10.1159/000092408. PMID 16567946.
  2. synd/2845 at Who Named It?
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