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Hagen Gasse, chair of the International Committee on Veterinary Gross Anatomical Nomenclature, responds
  1. Hagen Gasse, chairman
  1. International Committee on Veterinary Gross Anatomical Nomenclature, c/o Anatomisches Institut, Tierärztliche Hochschule Hannover, Bischofsholer Damm 15, 30173 Hannover, Germany
  1. email: hagen.gasse{at}tiho-hannover.de

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The term ‘tuba uterina’ was introduced in the first edition of the Nomina Anatomica Veterinaria and has remained in all subsequent editions (the current edition is the sixth, published in 2017). The term ‘oviductus’ has never been listed.

Accordingly, there is no evidence supporting Firdous Khan and Afroza Khanam’s statement that the fourth edition ‘approved replacement of the term “oviduct” by the term “uterine tube”.’

The term ‘oviductus’ is used in avian anatomy. The use of the two different terms in birds and mammals is appropriate to stress the distinct functional differences of the respective organs.

The Latin term ‘tuba uterina’ is linguistically and grammatically precise. If the structure was a part of the uterus, it would be called ‘tuba uteri’.

The English translation (like translations and wordings in any other language) may be ambiguous, as shown in the example that Khan and Khanam mention: that the English terms ‘uterine tube’ and ‘uterine horn’ may be misleading. However, the Latin terms ‘tuba uterina’ and ‘cornu uteri’ are unambiguous. Considering this, scientists and teachers may prefer to use the Latin terminology; this is what the Nomina Anatomica Veterinaria is made for.

The current edition can be downloaded from the homepage of the World Association of Veterinary Anatomists (WAVA) at www.wava-amav.org. The list of terms in this edition was crosschecked and, when necessary, harmonised with the latest editions of the Nomina Histologica Veterinaria and Nomina Embryologica Veterinaria, both available on the WAVA homepage.

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