Abstract. Polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) ovaries are characterized by increased angiogenesis and hypervascularity. While angiopoietin-1 (Ang-1) and its antagonist, angiopoietin-2 (Ang-2), are essential for ovarian function and angiogenesis, the levels of Ang-1 and Ang-2 in PCOS are unknown. This was a prospective cohort study of 14 PCOS women and 14 matched controls undergoing controlled ovarian stimulation (COS). Serum was collected on day 3, hCG and retrieval days. Follicular fluid (FF) was collected on retrieval day. Serum Ang-1 and Ang-2 levels were constant throughout COS, but serum Ang-1 levels were increased at all time points in PCOS women compared with controls (p < 0.05). No differences between groups were found in serum Ang-2 levels or FF Ang-1 levels. However, FF Ang-2 levels were increased almost 2-fold in PCOS women compared with controls (p < 0.01), and correlated positively with number of oocytes retrieved (r = 0.65, p < 0.0001). This study is the first to provide evidence of an alteration in the Ang-1/Ang-2 system in PCOS women. The biological role of Ang-2 in promoting capillary leakage, the increased Ang-2 FF level in PCOS, and its correlation with number of oocytes suggest that Ang-2 may play an important role in the increased risk of ovarian hyperstimulation in PCOS.
- Controlled ovarian stimulation (COS)
- Polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS)
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Developmental Neuroscience
- Computer Networks and Communications
- Cell Biology