The synthetic estrogen diethylstilbestrol (DES) is an established perinatal endocrine disruptor (ED) in both humans and experimental animals. Of the rodent species used to evaluate the potency and mechanism of action of DES and other putative EDs, the Syrian golden hamster (Mesocricetus auratus) offers some unique advantages. These advantages have been reviewed recently and include 1) a very short and predictable gestation period (exactly 16 days); 2) a serum alpha-fetoprotein (AFP) moiety that does not bind the natural estrogen, estradiol-17p (E2); 3) an es-trous cycle that is very regular (exactly 4 days) and easy to monitor; and 4) cheek pouches that are immunologically privileged and convenient sites (amenable to repetitive inspection and manipulation) for tissue transplantation studies. buying antibiotics online legal
Our initial efforts in the hamster consisted of treating newborn animals with DES and then assessing reproductive tract morphology in mature (postpubertal) females. The reproductive tract region that first attracted our attention was the uterus, because 100% of the DES-exposed organs developed endometrial hyperplasia and a large proportion (~40%) progressed to neoplasia (endometrial adenocarcinoma).