Apoptosis as a function of ovarian reserve in women undergoing in vitro fertilization

D. B. Seifer, A. C. Cardiner, K. A. Ferreira, J. J. Peluso

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

87 Scopus citations


Objective: To test the hypothesis that preovulatory follicles from women with diminished ovarian reserve contain fewer numbers of luteinized granulosa cells and have a greater percentage of cells undergoing apoptosis as compared with women with uncompromised ovarian reserve undergoing superovulation for IVF-ET. Design: Comparative study. Setting: Academic clinical practice. Patients: Luteinized granulosa cell counts were determined from follicular aspirates harvested from 19 women with day 3 serum FSH ≤ 6 mIU/mL (conversion factor to SI unit, 1.00) and from 15 women with FSH levels ≤ 10 mIU/mL. The second part examined the percent of proliferating and apoptotic cells harvested from nine women with day 3 serum FSH ≤ 6 mIU/mL and from eight women with FSH levels ≤ 10 mIU/mL. Main Outcome Measures: Cell counts by hemacytometer and percent of proliferating and of apoptotic granulosa cells by flow cytometry. Results: The mean number of viable cells isolated per follicle were 2.7 x 105 (95% confidence interval [CI] 2.3 to 3.1 x 105) from the low FSH group and 1.8 ~ 105 (95% CI 1.4 to 2.3 x 105) from the high FSH group. Although the percentage of proliferating cells was the same, the mean percentage of apoptotic cells was 0.5% (95% CI 0.2% to 1.4%) from the low group and 2.0% (95% CI 1.1% to 3.7%) from the high group. Conclusions: Women undergoing IVF with day 3 serum FSkI ≤ 10 mIU/mL have preovulatory follicles with fewer luteinized granulosa cells and an increase in the percentage of cells undergoing apoptosis as compared with women with day 3 serum FSH ≤ 6 mIU/mL.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)593-598
Number of pages6
JournalFertility and sterility
Issue number4
StatePublished - Jan 1 1996



  • Granulosa cells
  • apoptosis
  • flow cytometry
  • ovarian reserve

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Reproductive Medicine
  • Obstetrics and Gynecology

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