B

4th month

7th month

Figure 1.17 Segment of the ovary at different stages of development. A. Oogonia are grouped in clusters in the cortical part of the ovary. Some show mitosis; others have differentiated into primary oocytes and entered prophase of the first meiotic division. B. Almost all oogonia are transformed into primary oocytes in prophase of the first meiotic division. C. There are no oogonia. Each primary oocyte is surrounded by a single layer of follicular cells, forming the primordial follicle. Oocytes have entered the diplotene stage of prophase, in which they remain until just before ovulation. Only then do they enter metaphase of the first meiotic division.

Resting primary oocyte (diplotene stage)

Follicular cell

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