Female reproductive disorder may be linked to problems with hormone recycling

November 16, 2017

Polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) is a leading cause of female infertility, affecting more than 10 million women worldwide. It is associated with abnormal levels of hormones such as androgens. New research led by Dr. Benjamin Tsang shows for the first time that PCOS may be associated with problems with how cells in the ovary recycle their androgen-sensing receptors. Old receptors are regularly degraded and replaced with new ones, but in a rat model of PCOS, the androgen receptor is degraded faster than it should be. This results in low androgen receptor levels and contributes to problems with egg production. This research, published in Scientific Reports, opens up a new avenue of research that could lead to new approaches to treat PCOS.

Authors: Lim JJ, Lima PDA, Salehi R, Lee DR, Tsang BK.

Funders: All research at The Ottawa Hospital is supported by generous donors to the hospital. This study was also supported by the Canadian Institutes of Health Research, the National Research Foundation of Korea and the Lalor Foundation.

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