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Critical Care Research and Practice
Volume 2013, Article ID 760305, 7 pages
Research Article

Retinol and Retinyl Palmitate in Foetal Lung Mice: Sexual Dimorphism

Histology and Embryology Institute, Faculty of Medicine, University of Coimbra, Rua Larga, 3004-504 Coimbra, Portugal

Received 8 August 2012; Revised 7 December 2012; Accepted 7 December 2012

Academic Editor: Manuel Sánchez Luna

Copyright © 2013 Olga Carvalho and Carlos Gonçalves. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


In this work, we evaluate the lung retinoids content to study the possible difference between male and female mice during prenatal development and to comprehend if the vitamin A metabolism is similar in both genders. The study occurred between developmental days E15 and E19, and the retinol and retinyl palmitate lung contents were determined by HPLC analysis. We established two main groups: the control, consisting of foetuses obtained from pregnant females without any manipulation, and vitamin A, composed of foetuses from pregnant females submitted to vitamin A administration on developmental day E14. Each of these groups was subdivided by gender, establishing the four final groups. In the lung of control group, retinol was undetected in both genders and retinyl palmitate levels exhibited a sexual dimorphism. In the vitamin A group, we detected retinol and retinyl palmitate in both genders, and we observed a more evident sexual dimorphism for both retinoids. Our study also indicates that, from developmental day E15 to E19, there is an increase in the retinoids content in foetal lung and a gender difference in the retinoids metabolism. In conclusion, there is a sexual dimorphism in the lung retinoids content and in its metabolism during mice development.