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Front. Physiol. | doi: 10.3389/fphys.2018.00459

High-frequency electrical modulation of the superior ovarian nerve as a treatment of polycystic ovary syndrome in the rat

Victor X. Pikov1,  Arun Sridhar1 and  Hernan E. Lara2*
  • 1Galvani Bioelectronics Limited, United Kingdom
  • 2Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Universidad de Chile, Chile

The polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) is the most prevalent ovarian pathology in women, with excessive sympathetic activity in the superior ovarian nerve (SON) playing an important role in inducing the PCOS symptoms in the rats and humans. Our previous studies have shown that surgical transection of the SON can reverse the disease progression, prompting us to explore the effect of the kilohertz alternating frequency current (KHFAC) modulation as a method of reversible non-surgical suppression of the nerve activity in the rodent model of PCOS. 56 animals were randomly allocated to 3 groups: the control group (n = 18), PCOS group (n = 15), and PCOS + KHFAC modulation group (n = 23). The physiological, anatomical, and biochemical parameters of ovarian function were evaluated during the progression of the experimentally-induced PCOS and during long-term KHFAC modulation applied for 2-3 weeks. The KHFAC modulation has been able to reverse the pathological changes in assessed PCOS parameters, namely the irregular or absent estrous cycling, formation of ovarian cysts, reduction in the number of corpora lutea, and ovarian norepinephrine concentration. The fertility capacity was similar in the PCOS and PCOS + KHFAC groups, indicating the safety of KHFAC modulation approach. In summary, these results suggest that the KHFAC modulation approach of suppressing the SON activity could become a useful treatment modality for PCOS and potentially other pathological ovarian conditions.

Keywords: Superior ovarian nerve, kilohertz alternating frequency current, high-frequency stimulation, high-frequency block, Polycystic Ovary Syndrome

Received: 26 Dec 2017; Accepted: 13 Apr 2018.

Edited by:

Katja Teerds, Human and Animal Physiology, Wageningen University, Netherlands

Reviewed by:

Jing Xu, Oregon Health & Science University, United States
Andreas N. Schüring, Universitätsklinikum Münster, Germany  

Copyright: © 2018 Pikov, Sridhar and Lara. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction in other forums is permitted, provided the original author(s) and the copyright owner are credited and that the original publication in this journal is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.

* Correspondence: Prof. Hernan E. Lara, DR., Universidad de Chile, Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Sergio Livingstone 1007, Santiago, 8380492, Chile, hlara@ciq.uchile.cl