Research Topic

Growth Hormone in Fertility and Infertility: Physiology, Pathology, Diagnosis and Treatment

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About this Research Topic

The use of growth hormone (GH) in human assisted reproduction is topical and controversial at the same time. While the idea is not new, and positive effects of GH have been reported in selected groups of patients, the indiscriminate use GH in all women undergoing an assisted reproduction attempt does not ...

The use of growth hormone (GH) in human assisted reproduction is topical and controversial at the same time. While the idea is not new, and positive effects of GH have been reported in selected groups of patients, the indiscriminate use GH in all women undergoing an assisted reproduction attempt does not appear to be suitable. It is thus increasingly important to define the groups of women who would actually benefit from GH treatment. This Research Topic updates the current knowledge of the role of growth hormone (GH) in the function of the adult human ovary and uterus, with a special reference to its therapeutic use in different clinical scenarios.

The Research Topic will recapitulate the current knowledge about the pituitary and extrapituitary expression of GH, with a special attention to the local expression of GH and its receptor in the ovary and the uterus, biological effects of GH in both organs, and the possible duality of direct effects of GH and those mediated by insulin-like growth factor-1 (IGF-1). The following collection of articles is dedicated, respectively, to the age-related changes of GH expression during the women's reproductive life and to the effects of GH described in animal experiments, followed by contributions dealing with the effects of GH on human oocyte quality and uterine receptivity for the implanting embryo.

Other sub-topics may include the current experience with the use of GH to enhance assisted reproduction outcomes in different categories of patients, in search for specific conditions which could be taken into account to make an adequate therapeutic decision in different clinical scenarios, pointing out the gaps of the current knowledge and the possible directions of future research to identify those women who can benefit from GH treatment to increase their chance to become pregnant.

Potential sub-topics may include, but are not limited to:

1. Growth hormone in the female reproductive system
1.1. Pituitary and extrapituitary growth hormone expression
1.2. Expression of growth hormone in the ovary and the uterus
1.3. Growth hormone receptors in the ovary and the uterus
1.4. Effects of growth hormone in the ovary and the uterus
1.5. Possible implications of IGF-1
2. Growth hormone and aging
3. Growth hormone in animal reproductive science
4. Growth hormone and human oocyte quality
5. Growth hormone and human uterine receptivity
6. Therapeutic use of growth hormone in human female infertility
6.1. Results obtained in young women with poor oocyte quality
6.1.1. Results obtained in aging women
6.1.2. Results obtained in women receiving donated oocytes
6.1.3. Rationale for growth hormone use in different clinical scenarios


Keywords: Growth hormone, Fertility, Physiology, Pathology, Infertility management


Important Note: All contributions to this Research Topic must be within the scope of the section and journal to which they are submitted, as defined in their mission statements. Frontiers reserves the right to guide an out-of-scope manuscript to a more suitable section or journal at any stage of peer review.

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