New York, NY (PRWEB) November 15, 2012
Direct perfusion of the endometrial cavity with granulocyte colony-stimulating factor (G-CSF) improves the thickness of the endometrial lining in IVF patients with too thin endometrium even after treatments, according to a new study just published online in the medical journal Human Reproduction(1).
In the study, 21 women undergoing in vitro fertilization (IVF) cycles at the Center for Human Reproduction (CHR) in New York City successfully expanded their initially inadequate endometrium after uterine perfusion with G-CSF. Specifically, in the 5 days between G-CSF perfusions and embryo transfers, patients increased their endometrial thickness from 6.4 ± 1.4 mm to 9.3 ± 2.1 mm. The result offers confirmatory evidence to an earlier, smaller report by the same research group on the positive effects of G-CSF on IVF patients with treatment-resistant, thin endometrium.
In natural menstrual cycles, endometrium develops on its own in preparation for embryo implantation. In IVF cycles, endometrium of at least 7 mm at the time of embryo transfer is considered necessary to achieve superior pregnancy rates. When endometrium is too thin and does not respond to conventional treatments, embryo transfer is often cancelled and embryos are frozen for transfer in a later cycle.
“Treatment-resistant thin endometrium is a fortunately rare, but frustrating, problem in IVF,” explains Norbert Gleicher, MD, Medical Director and Chief Scientist of CHR, the lead author of the study. “Affected patients, until now, at minimum, faced treatment delays and, not infrequently, if their endometrium could not be improved even in subsequent cycles, had no choice but to use a gestational carrier (surrogate).”
David H Barad, MD, MS, Director of Clinical ART and Senior Scientist at CHR, and another senior author of the study, adds: “This is why when in 2011 we reported our initial four cases in the literature, patients and colleagues took notice. One can still transfer embryos into the uterus with endometrial thickness under 7mm, but pregnancy chances will be very low. G-CSF perfusions really offer affected patients the opportunity to drastically improve IVF pregnancy chances.”
1Gleicher N et al. A pilot cohort study of granulocyte colony-stimulating factor in the treatment of unresponsive thin endometrium resistant to standard therapies. Hum Reprod 2012; (http://humrep.oxfordjournals.org/content/early/2012/10/17/humrep.des370.abstract)
About Center for Human Reproduction (CHR)
Located in New York City, CHR (http://www.centerforhumanreprod.com/) is a leading clinical fertility and research center in the world, having contributed many important innovations to the treatment of infertility. As "fertility center of last resort,” CHR treats patients worldwide, with, during 2011, over half coming from outside the New York tri-state area, approximately a quarter from overseas. Drs. Gleicher and Barad are available for further comments.