Different patterns of myometrial activity and 24-H rhythms in myometrial contractility in the gravid baboon during the second half of pregnancy

M. A. Morgan, S. L. Silavin, R. A. Wentworth, J. P. Figueroa, B. O.M. Honnebier, J. I. Fishburne, P. W. Nathanielsz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

38 Scopus citations

Abstract

Two clearly distinct epochs of myometrial contractility were observed in 13 pregnant baboons when recorded either as intraamniotic pressure (IAP) or myometrial electromyogram (EMG). Contractures, epochs lasting longer than 3 min, were the characteristic form of myometrial activity throughout pregnancy. Contractures generated only small increases in IAP. Short-lived contractions, generating larger increases in IAP, were characteristic of labor and delivery. Power spectral analysis of IAP and myometrial EMG activity proved to be an effective means whereby periods when the myometrium was in the contractures or contractions mode could be easily distinguished. Concomitantly recorded maternal intraabdominal temperature showed significant 24-h variations. When myometrial activity switched from low-amplitude, long- lasting regular contractures of pregnancy to contractions, the switch always occurred around the onset of darkness. Five baboons went into spontaneous labor, 3 prematurely and 2 at term. In these animals the switch from contractures to contractions occurred for several nights before delivery. The recurrence and timing of the switch from contractures to contractions for several nights before delivery were similar to the pattern we and others have observed in the pregnant rhesus monkey. The presence of 24-h periodicity in the patterns of specific types of myometrial activity in another nonhuman primate lends support to the view that similar 24-h patterns of myometrial activity may occur in pregnant women.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1158-1164
Number of pages7
JournalBiology of reproduction
Volume46
Issue number6
DOIs
StatePublished - 1992
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Reproductive Medicine
  • Cell Biology

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