|Gamete||A reproductive (sex) cell. In males, sperm; in females, eggs|
|Puberty||Process during which adolescents reach sexual and reproductive maturity|
|Testes||Male reproductive gland that produces sperm and male hormones|
|Ovaries||Female reproductive gland that produces eggs and female hormones|
|Menstrual cycle||Pattern of events in females involving the development and release of an egg|
|Fertilization||The process in sexual reproduction in which a male gamete and female gamete fuse to form a new cell|
The female reproductive system
Diagram of major female reproductive organs
|Ovaries||Produces and develops eggs|
|Fallopian tubes (oviducts)||Transports egg to uterus, acts as site of fertilization|
|Uterus||Supports a developing embryo|
|Cervix||Allows passage between the uterus and the vagina|
|Vagina||Receives penis during intercourse, acts as birth canal, passes menstrual flow|
|Breasts||Produce and deliver milk|
During puberty, the hypothalamus signals the pituitary gland to produce two hormones, follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) and luteinizing hormone (LH). In females, FSH and LH stimulate the ovaries to produce the female sex hormones, estrogen and progesterone. This results in the development of secondary sex characteristics (such as breasts), and causes the ovaries to begin producing mature eggs.
Egg release (ovulation) occurs approximately every 28 days, and is part of a larger process called the menstrual cycle. If an egg is fertilized after ovulation, it attaches to the wall of the uterus and embryonic development begins.
If an egg is not fertilized (or a fertilized egg does not attach to the wall of the uterus), the egg and the lining of the uterus are discharged from the body.
The male reproductive system
Diagram of male reproductive organs
|Testes||Produce sperm and male hormones|
|Scrotum||Supports testes and regulates their temperature|
|Seminal vesicle||Contribute fluids to semen production|
|Prostate gland||Secretes prostate fluid (component of semen), aids in ejaculation|
|Epididymis||Stores mature sperm|
|Vas deferens||Transports sperm from epididymis|
|Penis||Transfers sperm into female|
Puberty begins the same way in males as it does in females: the hypothalamus signals the pituitary gland to produce FSH and LH.
In males, LH stimulates the testes to produce testosterone, and with FSH, causes sperm development to occur. Testosterone is also responsible for the development of secondary male sex characteristics, such as a deepened voice and growth of body hair.
Common mistakes and misconceptions
- Fertilization occurs in the fallopian tube (oviduct) of the female reproductive system. Once fertilized, the egg attaches to the lining of the uterus. It becomes a ball of cells over time, then develops in the uterus of the female to become a baby.
- Only females are born with reproductive sex cells. Females are born with immature eggs already in their ovaries. When puberty occurs, the eggs mature and are released by the ovaries. Males only produce sperm after reaching puberty.
- Females do not urinate through the vagina. In men, both semen and urine pass through the urethra, a passageway that terminates at the end of the penis. Females urinate through a urethra as well, but it is not connected to their vaginal opening. The female urethra is located above the vagina and urine may pass over or around the opening, but the two passageways are not connected.
Want to join the conversation?
- So I notice a detailed diagram for the male reproductive system, but not the female? Why isn't there more detail on the labia majora and minora, clitoris, mons pubis, etc?(11 votes)
- Why is the regulation of the temperature of sperms important?(2 votes)
- What gets clipped during a vasectomy?(2 votes)
- The vas deferans (hence VASectomy), which is the tube that takes sperm from the testes to the seminal vesicle and through the prostate gland to the urethra. This prevents any sperm from exiting the body.(3 votes)
- Fertilization starts at what point(2 votes)
- I have certain doubt regarding female reproductive system
(1) There are two ovaries in female reproductive system and in video lecture sir said there is only one egg is produced in female so which ovary produce egg?
(2) There are two fallopian tubes in which one ferilization occure?
(3)how the sperm reaches from the vagina to fallopian tube in the female reproductive system diagram it is not clear
kindly help me(2 votes)
- 1)it depends on the readiness of each ovary to release the egg so when one ovary is still building the egg the other ovary releases the egg
2)any (depending on what direction sperm cells swim)
3)the sperm enters through the the cervix through the mucus and swims up the uterus till it meets the egg and till it fertilizes(7 votes)
- what is the ovarian cycle(1 vote)
- ovarian cycle (28 days) is the cyclic changes which take place in the ovary of the fertile female every mounth , under the effect of the hormones of the pitutary gland (FSH and LH) .
this cycle has 3 phases :
1. follicular phase
3. luteal phase(3 votes)
- the sperm enters through the the cervix through the mucus and swims up the uterus till it meets the egg and till it fertilizes(1 vote)
- That's true. After it swims up to the uterus, however, it goes into one of the two fallopian tubes, where it fertilises.(2 votes)
- Is it dangerous if, hypothetically, you ejaculate at the same time as urination? It is confusing since they are sent through two different tubes yet they still come out the same area.(1 vote)
- This is from a website GoAskAlice:
"The male body has a system that keeps it from being able to ejaculate and urinate at the same time. During sexual arousal, muscles at the base of the bladder contract in order to close off the passageway from the bladder into the urethra, the tube through which urine and semen leave the body. This makes it impossible for urine to be released during ejaculation."(2 votes)
- are there a sensory organ on the egg that keeps the other sperm from coming in?(1 vote)
- When a sperm makes it through the zona pellucida and binds to a sperm receptor in the innermost layer of the ovum, it releases its nucleus within. The ooocyte then releases a lot of calcium from its endoplasmic reticulum, which causes all the other sperm receptors to be destroyed. This causes the other sperm trying to get through to be unsuccessful.(1 vote)