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Previous studies showed that the two forms of momorcharins which are isolated from seeds of L. are effective in inducing early and midterm abortions in the mouse. Momorcharins were found to be teratogenic to the cultured mouse embryos at the early organogenesis stage. Morphological abnormalities were seen in the head, trunk and limbs. Ultrastructural studies on the visceral yolk sac of the momorcharin-treated embryos showed that the endodermal layer was deranged, membrane invaginations at the apical surface were decreased and intercellular space became distended. It is likely that the teratogenic action of momorcharins on mouse embryos is mediated through the deleterious effects on the visceral yolk sac, which functions as a vital transport organ for the conceptus at the immediate post-implantation period.
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Accepted: October 21, 1986
Received: September 30, 1986
© 1986 Published by Elsevier Inc.