Talk:Baboon Development

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Cite this page: Hill, M.A. (2021, October 22) Embryology Baboon Development. Retrieved from


Tracking development of the corpus callosum in fetal and early postnatal baboons using magnetic resonance imaging

Open Neuroimag J. 2011;5:179-85. Epub 2011 Nov 18.

Phillips KA, Kochunov P. Source Department of Psychology, Trinity University, San Antonio Texas, USA.


Although the maturation of the corpus callosum (CC) can serve as a sensitive marker for normative antenatal and postnatal brain development, little is known about its development across this critical period. While high-resolution magnetic resonance imaging can provide an opportunity to examine normative brain development in humans, concerns remain over the exposure of developing fetuses to non-essential imaging. Nonhuman primates can provide a valuable model for normative brain maturation. Baboons share several important developmental characteristics with humans, including a highly orchestrated pattern of cerebral development. Developmental changes in total CC area and its subdivisions were examined across the antenatal (weeks 17 - 26 of 28 weeks total gestation) and early postnatal (to week 32) period in baboons (Papio hamadryas anubis). Thirteen fetal and sixteen infant baboons were studied using high-resolution MRI. During the period of primary gyrification, the total area of the CC increased by a magnitude of five. By postnatal week 32, the total CC area attained only 51% of the average adult area. CC subdivisions showed non-uniform increases in area, throughout development. The splenium showed the most maturation by postnatal week 32, attaining 55% of the average adult value. The subdivisions of the genu and anterior midbody showed the least maturation by postnatal week 32, attaining 50% and 49% of the average adult area. Thus, the CC of baboons shows continued growth past the postnatal period. These age-related changes in the developing baboon CC are consistent with the developmental course in humans.

PMID 22253660


Regulation of baboon fetal pituitary prolactin expression by estrogen

Biol Reprod. 2009 Jun;80(6):1189-95. Epub 2009 Jan 28.

Pepe GJ, Lynch TJ, Davies WA, Albrecht ED. Source Department of Physiological Sciences, Eastern Virginia Medical School, Norfolk, Virginia 23501-1980, USA.


We previously showed that fetal adrenal fetal zone growth was increased and the number of follicles in the fetal ovary reduced in baboons in which estradiol was suppressed by treatment with the aromatase inhibitor letrozole between mid and late gestation periods. Because adrenal/ovarian development was restored in animals treated with letrozole and estradiol, and both tissues express estrogen receptor, we proposed that estrogen regulates fetal adrenal/ovary development via a direct action. However, because prolactin can modulate fetal adrenal and adult pituitary/ovarian function, the current study determined whether estrogen action involved estradiol-regulated changes in fetal prolactin/luteinizing hormone (LH) expression. Fetal prolactin levels and the number of prolactin-positive fetal pituitary cells (per 0.37 mm(2)) were increased (P < 0.01) between mid (6 +/- 1 ng/ml; 15.8 +/- 2.4) and late (257 +/- 28 ng/ml; 57.3 +/- 5.1) gestation, reduced (P < 0.01) in late-gestation fetuses in which estradiol was suppressed (>95%) by letrozole (61 +/- 11 ng/ml; 19.3 +/- 2.0), and minimally but not significantly increased by letrozole and estradiol (99 +/- 11 ng/ml; 32.7 +/- 5.2). In contrast, the number of LH-positive fetal pituitary cells decreased (P < 0.01) between mid (48.8 +/- 9.5) and late (17.4 +/- 3.2) gestation, remained elevated (P < 0.01) in estrogen-suppressed animals (56.6 +/- 5.1), and was partially but not significantly decreased by letrozole-estradiol (28.8 +/- 5.2). We conclude that estrogen regulates fetal pituitary prolactin and LH expression and fetal prolactin levels. However, because prolactin and LH expressions in estrogen-suppressed fetuses were inversely related to previously demonstrated changes in adrenal/ovarian development, we propose that estrogen regulates the fetal ovary and adrenal gland directly and not via action on the fetal pituitary gland.

PMID 19176882 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE] PMCID: PMC2804803


Application of Carnegie stages of development to unify human and baboon ultrasound findings early in pregnancy

Ultrasound Med Biol. 2007 Sep;33(9):1400-5. Epub 2007 Jun 11.

Santolaya-Forgas J, De Leon-Luis J, Friel LA, Wolf R. Source Center for Fetal Medicine and Prenatal Genetics, Brigham and Women's Hospital, Boston, MA 02115, and Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Texas Tech University and Health Science Center, Amarillo, USA.


The objective of this study was to determine if very early ultrasonographic measurements obtained from human and baboon are comparable. For this purpose, the gestational, amniotic and yolk sacs, embryonic crown rump length (CRL) and heart rate were measured ultrasonographically between 35 and 47 days from the mean day of a three-day mating period in baboons (n=18) and between 42 to 58 days from fertilization as calculated from the CRL measurements in human pregnancies (n=82). Ultrasonographic measurements from both species were then plotted in the same graph using Carnegie stages of embryonic development as the independent variable to allow for visual comparisons. Mean gestational age at ultrasonographic studies was significantly different for humans and baboons (50.4 vs. 41 days, respectively; p>0.01). Significant correlations (p>0.01) were noted between ultrasonographic measurements and Carnegie stages of development in both humans and baboons. Only the gestational and the yolk sacs were significantly smaller in baboons than in humans (p>0.05). The findings that embryonic CRL, extra-embryonic space and heart rate are very similar between the 17th and 23rd Carnegie developmental stages make the baboon a promising surrogate of human pregnancy for investigations using celocentesis.

PMID 17561331


Generation of a specific-pathogen-free baboon colony

J Am Assoc Lab Anim Sci. 2010 Nov;49(6):814-20.

Wolf RF, Eberle R, White GL. Source Comparative Medicine and Department of Pathology, University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, USA.


We undertook establishing an SPF baboon colony in response to requests from researchers. To enable the widest possible future use of SPF baboons, our aim was to develop an SPF colony of baboons (Papio hamadryas anubis) free of 12 target viruses: 5 herpesviruses, 4 retroviruses, simian virus 40, measles, and monkeypox. Infant baboons were removed from their mothers within 24 h of birth and nursery-reared. Groups of 3 to 8 age-matched conspecifics were isolated in separate rooms for 1 y while undergoing repeated testing for target viruses. During the initial 7 y of the SPF program, 171 infants were enrolled, of which 76 (44.4%) subsequently were removed from the program. Of those removed, 54 (71.0%) were culled due to breaks in virus-free status, 12 (15.8%) died of various causes, 4 (5.3%) developed seizures, and 6 (7.9%) were removed for other reasons. The most problematic viruses were baboon cytomegalovirus (25.9% of culls), Herpesvirus papio 1 (51.9%), and simian foamy virus (7.4%). Using conspecific groups of 3 to 4 infants reduced first-year program losses as compared with groups of 6 to 8. There have been 17 births in the SPF colony, and all these infants have been free of all target viruses since birth. On the basis of these results, early removal of infants from their dams, housing in small peer groups, frequent virus testing, and aggressive culling of virus-positive animals is an effective approach for development of a baboon colony free of multiple viruses.

PMID 21205446


Transvaginal ultrasonographic (TVS) evaluation of baboon gestation from 37-62 days postconception

Am J Primatol. 1997;43(4):323-8.

Santolaya-Forgas J, Vengalil S, Meyer W, Fortman J. Source Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, School of Medicine, University of Illinois at Chicago 60612, USA.


Our objective was to determine the growth of the embryo and surrounding structures during baboon (Papio anubis) gestation using transvaginal sonography (TVS). To this end, we evaluated 19 timed-mated baboons using TVS between 37 and 62 days of gestation. After visualization of the gestational sac, amniotic sac, and yolk sac, the three largest diameters of each of these extra embryonic structures were measured using longitudinal and transverse views. Embryonic crown-rump length (CRL) was also recorded. Embryonic heart rates were determined using the M-mode function of the ultrasound equipment. All 19 gestations developed without complications. No significant trend could be demonstrated for heart rate or yolk sac diameters over the 37-62 day gestational age period. Mean (SD) gestational age in days, heart rate, and yolk sac diameter, respectively, for the group were 48 (7.8) days (range: 37-61), 180 (15) beats per minute (range: 156-221) and 5 (0.1) mm (range: 3-8). Significant correlations (P < 0.0001) were determined between gestational age and CRL and gestational and amniotic sacs. We conclude that TVS allows a clear visualization of the embryo proper and all the cavities within the gestational sac of the baboon gestation. This study has determined the normal pattern of changes of these cavities from 37-62 days of gestation. Future applications of these findings may include sampling fluid from these cavities for biochemical, cytological, and metabolic studies.

PMID 9403096