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Dekel, N. -  Department of Biological Regulation, Weizmann Institute of Science, Rehovot, 76100, Israel.

Each follicle represents the basic functional unit of the ovary. From its very initial stage of development, the follicle consists of an oocyte surrounded by somatic cells. The oocyte grows and matures to become fertilizable and the somatic cells proliferate and differentiate into the major suppliers of steroid sex hormones as well as generators of other local regulators. The process by which a follicle forms, proceeds through several growing stages, develops to eventually release the mature oocyte, and turns into a corpus luteum (CL) is known as "folliculogenesis". The task of this review is to define the different stages of folliculogenesis culminating at ovulation and CL formation, and to summarize the most recent information regarding the newly identified factors that regulate the specific stages of this highly intricated process. This information comprises of either novel regulators involved in ovarian biology, such as Ube2i, Phoenixin/GPR73, C1QTNF, and α-SNAP, or recently identified members of signaling pathways previously reported in this context, namely PKB/Akt, HIPPO, and Notch.

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Newly Identified Regulators of Ovarian Folliculogenesis and Ovulation
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Dekel, N. -  Department of Biological Regulation, Weizmann Institute of Science, Rehovot, 76100, Israel.

Newly Identified Regulators of Ovarian Folliculogenesis and Ovulation

Each follicle represents the basic functional unit of the ovary. From its very initial stage of development, the follicle consists of an oocyte surrounded by somatic cells. The oocyte grows and matures to become fertilizable and the somatic cells proliferate and differentiate into the major suppliers of steroid sex hormones as well as generators of other local regulators. The process by which a follicle forms, proceeds through several growing stages, develops to eventually release the mature oocyte, and turns into a corpus luteum (CL) is known as "folliculogenesis". The task of this review is to define the different stages of folliculogenesis culminating at ovulation and CL formation, and to summarize the most recent information regarding the newly identified factors that regulate the specific stages of this highly intricated process. This information comprises of either novel regulators involved in ovarian biology, such as Ube2i, Phoenixin/GPR73, C1QTNF, and α-SNAP, or recently identified members of signaling pathways previously reported in this context, namely PKB/Akt, HIPPO, and Notch.

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