AP Biology : Reproductive Physiology

Study concepts, example questions & explanations for AP Biology

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Example Questions

Example Question #81 : Reproductive Physiology

Which of the following best describes the effect of high estrogen concentrations on follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) levels?

Possible Answers:

Has no effect on FSH levels

Decreases FSH levels

Maintains FSH levels

Increases FSH levels 

Correct answer:

Increases FSH levels 

Explanation:

During the follicular phase of the estrous cycle, estrogen, luteinizing hormone (LH), and follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) are in a positive feedback loop. High concentrations of estrogen stimulate the anterior pituitary gland to secrete LH and FSH.

Example Question #82 : Reproductive Physiology

In mammalian reproduction, what is the stigma?

Possible Answers:

The layer of cells surrounding the released oocyte 

The hole that forms in the follicle to allow for oocyte release

The entrance to the fallopian tubes

The resulting diploid organism that develops after the fusion of an egg and sperm 

Correct answer:

The hole that forms in the follicle to allow for oocyte release

Explanation:

The increase in luteinizing hormone (LH) concentration during the follicular stage of the estrous cycle leads to the release of proteolytic enzymes from the follicle. These enzymes degrade the follicle tissue and create a hole called the “stigma.” The secondary oocyte exits the follicle from the stigma in a process called ovulation.

Example Question #83 : Reproductive Physiology

Which of the following male reproductive structures does not contribute to the composition of semen?

Possible Answers:

Glans penis

Seminal vesicles 

Bulbourethral gland 

Prostate gland 

Correct answer:

Glans penis

Explanation:

Semen is a fluid that contains sperm cells, proteolytic enzymes, lipids, and fructose. The prostate gland, bulbourethral gland, and seminal vesicles all contribute to the makeup of semen. Semen protects and transports sperm cells inside the female reproductive tract as they seek out the egg cell.

Example Question #10 : Understanding Other Reproductive Physiology

What is the pH of semen and why is it important?

Possible Answers:

Semen is alkaline to attract the egg cell 

Semen is alkaline to counteract the acidity of the female vagina 

Semen is acidic to protect and keep the sperm cell alive 

Semen is acidic to counteract the alkalinity of the female vagina

Correct answer:

Semen is alkaline to counteract the acidity of the female vagina 

Explanation:

Semen is the fluid that contains and transports sperm cells to the female reproductive tract. The female vagina is acidic due to lactic acid output from normally occurring bacteria in the vagina. In order to protect sperm cells from the acidic environment, semen is alkaline.

Example Question #11 : Understanding Other Reproductive Physiology

Which of the following best describes the role of the bulbourethral gland?

Possible Answers:

It contributes fructose to semen 

It contributes proteolytic enzymes to semen 

It contracts to initiate ejaculation 

It lubricates the urethra

Correct answer:

It lubricates the urethra

Explanation:

The bulbourethral gland is a part of the male reproductive system that contributes protein-rich fluid to semen and lubricates the urethra.

Example Question #12 : Understanding Other Reproductive Physiology

Which of the following best describes the place where all secretions that form the ejaculate combine?

Possible Answers:

Ejaculatory duct

Urethra

Glans penis 

Epididymis

Correct answer:

Ejaculatory duct

Explanation:

Prior to ejaculation, secretions from the bulbourethral gland, prostate gland, epididymis, and seminal vesicles enter the ejaculatory duct. The ejaculatory duct is the place where semen mixes and is stored until ejaculation.

Example Question #81 : Reproductive Physiology

Which of the following best explains why ejaculation has a high fructose concentration?

Possible Answers:

To provide energy for the sperm cells 

To increase alkalinity 

To lubricate the urethra 

To degrade the zona pellucida 

Correct answer:

To provide energy for the sperm cells 

Explanation:

Seminal vesicles secrete a large portion of the components that make up semen. A high concentration of fructose is included in these secretions. The fructose provides energy rich molecules for sperm cell movement.

Example Question #14 : Understanding Other Reproductive Physiology

Which of the following parts of the male reproductive system carries the semen out of the penis?

Possible Answers:

Seminiferous tubules

Vas deferens

Epididymis

Urethra

Correct answer:

Urethra

Explanation:

In males, the urethra carries semen from the ejaculatory duct out of the penis. The urethra also carries urine from the bladder through the penis.

Example Question #15 : Understanding Other Reproductive Physiology

During copulation, where does the penis release the ejaculate in the female reproductive tract?

Possible Answers:

Fallopian tubes

Vagina

Uterus

Cervix

Correct answer:

Vagina

Explanation:

During copulation and sexual intercourse, the penis enters the female vagina. Ejaculation—the release of semen from the penis—also occurs in the vagina.

Example Question #82 : Reproductive Physiology

Which of the following choices best describes the impact of an influx of intracellular calcium on sperm cells during capacitation?

Possible Answers:

It triggers the acrosomal reaction 

It aids in chemotaxis towards the oocyte

It destabilizes the sperm's plasma membrane

It increases sperm cell motility 

Correct answer:

It increases sperm cell motility 

Explanation:

During capacitation, sperm cells undergo biochemical changes that allow for fertilization of the oocyte. One of these changes is an influx of intracellular calcium, which leads to an increase in intracellular cAMP levels. The high levels of calcium and cAMP promote hyperactivation—increased motility—through deeper tail bends. This change in sperm tail movement is accompanied by the adoption of a swinging movement by the head of the cell. These changes in motility patterns help sperm cell movement within the female reproductive tract.

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