Development

The Mullerian (paramesonephric) duct and the urogenital sinus give rise to the female reproductive tract. The ovaries develop from the urogenital ridge and contain primordial germ cells which will differentiate into oo-cytes that mature to ova and are ovulated. The anterior vagina, derived from the urogenital sinus, differs his-tologically from the posterior vagina and the vestibule. The hymen forms at the site of fusion of the Mullerian duct and the urogenital sinus. The oviducts, uterus, and cervix develop during fetal life into endometrial and myometrial layers, but complete differentiation of the endometrium occurs only after birth, during the neonatal period with timing depending on species. The glands of the uterus differentiate and develop only after birth. The inner circular and outer longitudinal layers of smooth muscle of the myometrium differentiate during late fetal and/or early neonatal periods.

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