Preputial gland

From Biology-Online Dictionary | Biology-Online Dictionary


noun, plural: preputial glands

A type of sebaceous gland located in the folds of skin front of certain mammalian genitals


A sebaceous gland is an exocrine gland in the skin that secretes sebum usually into a hair follicle near the surface of the skin. The sebum it secretes is essential in lubricating the hair and skin. It is an oily substance that gives skin and hair its waterproof characteristic. In humans, the sebaceous glands are on all parts of the skin but they are greatest in number on the face and scalp and are lacking on the palms of the hands and soles of the feet. There are many types of sebaceous glands and one of them is the preputial gland. Preputial glands are sebaceous glands found in the folds of the skin front of certain mammalian genitals such as of mice, gray wolves, and even-toed ungulates. In females, the preputial glands are sometimes called the clitoral glands.

The secretions of the preputial glands are involved in mate attraction since the secretions of the preputial glands contain pheromones. They are also used in manufacturing perfumes. In particular, the secretion from the preputial glands of the male musk deer is used extensively as perfume fixative.


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