The morphology of female genitalia in Galea spixii (Caviidae, Caviinae)


  • Amilton Cesar dos Santos Universidade de São Paulo
  • Bruno Machado Bertassoli Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais
  • Diego Carvalho Viana Universidade de São Paulo
  • Bruno Gomes Vaconcelos Universidade Federal de Mato Grosso
  • Moacir Franco de Oliveira Universidade Federal Rural do Semiárido
  • Maria Angélica Miglino Universidade de São Paulo
  • Antônio Chaves de Assis Neto Universidade de São Paulo


Caviinae, Reproduction, Rodents, Vaginal closure membrane.


The yellow-toothed cavy (Galea spixii) is a hystricomorph rodent of the Caviidae family. In Brazil, G. spixii are bred in captivity to provide an alternative protein source and to preserve the specie. However, there is a lack of data on the animal´s female genital organs. Current research describes the morphology of the species´s adult female genital organs, regardless of the stage of its estrous cycle, and permits basic knowledge on its anatomy that will be a help for future projects in reproduction in captivity. Adult female genital organs of G. spixii comprise two ovaries with follicles at several developmental stages; uterine tubes whose epithelium and muscle layer thickness modify themselves throughout the isthmus, ampulla and infundibulum regions; double uterus and uterine horns with uterine glands that open to a single cervix which is linked to the vagina by the fornix; a variegated vaginal epithelium from different animals; a vulva with a clitoris trespassed by the urethra which features a lack of vaginal vestibule and the presence of a vaginal closure membrane. The morphology of G. spixii female genitalia has interesting characteristics such as the vaginal closure membrane and a clitoris trespassed by urethra that needs further studies. Other investigations on developmental biology could demonstrate a possible intrauterine masculinization in the G. spixii female.


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How to Cite

SANTOS, A.C. dos, BERTASSOLI, B.M., VIANA, D.C., VACONCELOS, B.G., OLIVEIRA, M.F. de, MIGLINO, M.A. and ASSIS NETO, A.C. de, 2014. The morphology of female genitalia in Galea spixii (Caviidae, Caviinae) . Bioscience Journal [online], vol. 30, no. 6, pp. 1793–1802. [Accessed25 February 2024]. Available from:



Agricultural Sciences