The numerous actions of the epididymis described in the Parts II and III of this review can be considered in terms of two complementary phases of the interaction of sperm cells with the epididymal environment. From this point of view, the epididymal function of sperm storage is intimately linked with, and necessarily consequent upon, that of sperm maturation. The two phases are, firstly, promoting the ability of sperm to respond appropriately to conditions within the female tract so that they can achieve fertilisation, and secondly, preventing the expression of these propensities within the male tract itself (see Fig. 4).


Sperm Cell Acrosome Reaction Sperm Storage Sperm Maturation Forward Progression 
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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 1986

Authors and Affiliations

  • Trevor G. Cooper
    • 1
  1. 1.Max-Planck-Gesellschaft zur Förderung der Wissenschaften e. V.Klinische Forschungsgruppe für Reproduktionsmedizin an der Frauenklinik der Universität MünsterMünsterGermany

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