The Evolution of Endometrial Cycles and Menstruation

  title={The Evolution of Endometrial Cycles and Menstruation},
  author={Beverly I. Strassmann},
  journal={The Quarterly Review of Biology},
  pages={181 - 220}
  • B. Strassmann
  • Published 1 June 1996
  • Biology
  • The Quarterly Review of Biology
According to a recent hypthesis, menstruation evolved to protect the uterus oviducts from sperm-borne pathogens by dislodging infected endometrial tissue and delivering immune cells to the uterine cavity. This hypothesis predicts the following: (1) uterine pathogens should be more prevalent before menses than after menses, (2) in the life histories of females, the timing of menstruation should track pathogen burden, and (3) in primates, the copiousness of menstruation should increase with the… 
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