The human reproductive system
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The Human Reproductive System. Male Reproductive System. urinary bladder. seminal vesicles. prostate gland. urethra. penis. rectum. epididymis. Cowper’s gland. testis/testes. vas deferens. scrotum. Male Reproductive System (frontal view). See p. 62 in Review book.

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Male reproductive system
Male Reproductive System

urinary bladder

seminal vesicles

prostate gland





Cowper’s gland


vas deferens


Male reproductive system frontal view
Male Reproductive System (frontal view)

See p. 62 in Review book

Male reproductive system1
Male Reproductive System

  • Scrotum – sac of skin that holds testes. Hangs below body to keep testes cool. Sperm cannot be produced if body is too warm. Testes move into scrotum just before birth.

  • Testis/testes – male gonads. Made up of small, coiled tubes – seminiferous tubules. 300-600 per testis. Immature sperm made here.

    Secrete testosterone

Male reproductive system2
Male Reproductive System

  • Epididymis – storage area in upper rear of testis. Immature sperm move here to mature – takes 18 hours.

  • Vas deferens – tube that leads upwards from each testis into lower part of abdomen from epididymis.

  • Cowper’s gland – produces fluids that nourish sperm and protect them from the acidity of female.

    Combination of sperm and fluids - semen

Male reproductive system3
Male Reproductive System

6. Rectum – holds wastes

7. Seminal vesicles – same job as Cowper’s gland

8. Urinary bladder – stores urine

9. Prostate gland – same job as Cowper’s gland and seminal vesicles

10. Urethra – passageway for excretion of urine and for sperm to leave body. Vas deferens empties into urethra

Male reproductive system4
Male Reproductive System

11. Penis – male reproductive organ. Facilitates internal fertilization

Ejaculation – muscular contractions force semen through urethra. Before, during and after ejaculation reflex actions keep outlet of bladder closed

Hormones and negative feedback in males
Hormones and Negative Feedback in Males

  • Negative Feedback – change that leads to a response that causes something to counteract that change

  • Luteinizing Hormone (LH) – stimulates testes to produce testosterone

  • Testosterone – stimulates development of sperm. Once there is a large number of sperm, puberty is complete.

The human reproductive system

What is the effect of high levels of LH?

Testosterone is produced

What is the effect of high levels of testosterone?

Slows production of LH which in turn slows production of testosterone

What is the overall outcome of this on-off negative feedback system involving LH and testosterone?

Nearly constant level of both hormones - homeostasis

Male reproductive system and hormones
Male Reproductive System and Hormones

  • Explain how LH stimulates the testes to produce testosterone.

    Circulates in the blood- reaches the testes target cells – stimulates them to produce testosterone

  • What happens when the levels of testosterone are too high in the body?

    LH level drops

  • What is negative feedback and how does it maintain homeostasis?

    Change in conditions triggers response in body to counteract that condition. Keeps hormones in balance

Female reproductive system
Female Reproductive System



Urinary bladder






Female reproductive system frontal view
Female Reproductive System (frontal view)

See p. 61 in Review book

Female reproductive system1
Female Reproductive System

  • Ovary – female gonads. Secrete estrogen – produces secondary characteristics, menstrual cycle

    Produces eggs – 2 ovaries 4cms long, 2 cms wide

The human reproductive system

Follicles – each ovary contains 200,000 egg sacs called follicles. In each follicle is an immature egg.

All the eggs are present at birth. During the woman’s lifetime 500 eggs mature

When an egg matures, follicle moves to surface of ovary.

Follicle breaks & releases the egg – ovulation

Egg can be fertilized for about 24 hours after ovulation

Female reproductive system2
Female Reproductive System

2. Oviduct (fallopian tube) – Each ovary is near but not connected to oviduct. Tube with funnel-like opening. Cilia line it to create a current that draws the egg into the tube. Egg is fertilized in the oviduct

3. Uterus – thick, muscular, pear-shaped organ. Once egg is fertilized it finishes its development in uterus attached to uterine wall

Female reproductive system3
Female Reproductive System

4. Urinary bladder – storage of urine

5. Urethra – passage of urine to outside of body

6. Vagina (birth canal) – leads to outside of body

7. Cervix – narrow neck of uterus

8. Rectum – passage for wastes

The menstrual cycle
The Menstrual Cycle

What is the menstrual cycle?

Cycle during which an egg develops and is released from the ovary and the uterus is prepared to receive a fertilized egg

Menarche: first menstrual period – usually occurs between 11 and 12

Menopause: time when a woman stops menstruating, usually between 45 & 55 and is no longer able to conceive.

The menstrual cycle2
The Menstrual Cycle

1. Menstruation: Loss of egg and uterine tissue via vagina if fertilization does not occur

2. Follicle Stage (follicular stage): lasts 10 days, FSH & LH levels increase, egg matures, follicle secretes estrogen to prepare uterus

The menstrual cycle3
The Menstrual Cycle

3. Ovulation: High level of estrogen detected by hypothalamus, increased LH, decreased FSH, follicle bursts – egg released

4. Corpus Luteum Stage (Luteal Phase): LH converts follicle to corpus luteum – secretes estrogen & progesterone. Progesterone prepares uterus. Increased progesterone keeps LH & FSH low

The human reproductive system
Another Way of Looking at Negative Feedback in the Female Reproductive System (Hormones of the Menstrual Cycle)


Pituitary gland

FSH (causes egg to mature in follicle)

LH (causes to egg to be let go = ovulation)


Estrogen (causes uterine lining to thicken & build up to prepare for egg)


Progesterone (helps maintain uterine lining)

Hormones of menstrual cycle
Hormones of Menstrual Cycle Reproductive System (Hormones of the Menstrual Cycle)

What happens if fertilization occurs?

Corpus luteum keeps producing progesterone to maintain pregnancy. After 5 weeks the embryo produces progesterone – this inhibits LH & FSH so no menstrual cycle

What happens if fertilization does not occur?

There is no implantation – the corpus luteum breaks down. Progesterone level drops, uterine lining breaks down – menstruation.

FSH & LH are produced again – new cycle

Average Menstrual Cycle is 28 days long

Ovulation to implantation
Ovulation to Implantation Reproductive System (Hormones of the Menstrual Cycle)



egg from ruptured follicle






Ovulation to implantation1
Ovulation to Implantation Reproductive System (Hormones of the Menstrual Cycle)

  • Ovary – produces estrogen & progesterone – meiosis occurs & egg develops

  • Egg matures in follicle of ovary

  • Ovulation – egg released from follicle – may live for 24 hours

    - egg moves into fallopian tube by cilia

Ovulation to implantation2
Ovulation to Implantation Reproductive System (Hormones of the Menstrual Cycle)

  • Events in fallopian tube

    • Fertilization occurs here. Sperm lives 4-5 days (egg lives 1 day)

    • Zygote undergoes mitosis & travels down fallopian tube within 6-10 days. Zygote is ready to implant into uterus.

Ovulation to implantation3
Ovulation to Implantation Reproductive System (Hormones of the Menstrual Cycle)

  • Events in uterus

    • Implantation – embryo implants/embeds into uterine lining & secretes hormone HCG to signal its arrival

    • Cell Differentiation – cells divide by mitosis & become different due to gene expression. Different embryo parts will form.