A brief insight into the etiology, genetics, and immunology of polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS).J Assist Reprod Genet. 2022 Nov; 39(11):2439-2473.JA
Polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) is a prevailing endocrine and metabolic disorder occurring in about 6-20% of females in reproductive age. Most symptoms of PCOS arise early during puberty. Since PCOS involves a combination of signs and symptoms, thus it is considered as a heterogeneous disorderliness. The most accepted diagnostic criteria is Rotterdam criteria which involves two of the latter three features: (a) hyperandrogenism, (b) oligo- or an-ovulation, and (c) polycystic ovaries. The persistent hormonal imbalance leads to multiple small antral follicles formation and irregular menstrual cycle, ultimately causing infertility among females. Insulin resistance, cardiovascular diseases, abdominal obesity, psychological disorders, infertility, and cancer are also related to PCOS. These pathophysiologies associated with PCOS are interrelated with each other. Hyperandrogenism causes insulin resistance and hyperglycemia, leading to ROS formation, oxidative stress, and abdominal adiposity. In consequence, inflammation, ROS production, insulin resistance, and hyperandrogenemia also increase. Elevation of AGEs in the body either produced endogenously or consumed from diet exaggerates PCOS symptoms and is also related to ovarian dysfunction. This review summarizes how AGE formation, inflammation, and oxidative stress are significantly essential in PCOS progression. Alterations during prenatal development like exposure to excess AMH, androgens, or toxins (bisphenol-A, endocrine disruptors, etc.) may also be the etiologic mechanism behind PCOS. Although the etiology of this disorder is unclear, environmental and genetic factors are primarily involved. Physical inactivity, as well as unhealthy eating habits, has a vital role in the progression of PCOS. This review outlines a collection of specific genes phenotypically linked with PCOS. Furthermore, beneficial effect of metformin in maintaining endocrine abnormalities and ovarian function is also mentioned. Kisspeptin is a protein which helps in onset of puberty and increases GnRH pulsatile release during ovulation as well as role of KNDy neurons in GnRH pulsatile signal required for reproduction are also elaborated. This review also focuses on the immunology related to PCOS involving chronic low-grade inflammation, and how the alterations within the follicular microenvironment are intricated in the development of infertility in PCOS patients. How PCOS develops following antiepileptic and psychiatric medication is also expanded in this review. Initiation of antiandrogen treatment in early age (≤ 25 years) might be helpful in spontaneous conception in PCOS women. The role of BMP (bone morphogenetic proteins) in folliculogenesis and their expression in oocytes and granulosa cells are also explained. GDF8 and SERPINE1 expression in PCOS is given in detail.