Feature Papers for Celebrating the 3rd Founding Year of Reproductive Medicine

A special issue of Reproductive Medicine (ISSN 2673-3897).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 December 2022) | Viewed by 26364

Special Issue Editor


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Guest Editor
Unit of Gynecology, Sant’Andrea Hospital of Rome, University Sapienza of Rome, Via Grottarossa 1039, 00189 Rome, Italy
Interests: reproductive surgery; infertility; PCOS; ovulation induction
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues, 

This Special Issue is designed to celebrate the 3rd anniversary of the founding of the open access journal Reproductive Medicine. The Special Issue covers all topics related to reproductive medicine, and research fields of interest include but are not limited to reproductive surgery, female and male infertility, PCOS, endocrine diseases influencing reproduction, ovulation induction, ovarian stimulation for IVF/ICSI cycles, etc. Distinguished researchers from all over the world will be invited to contribute to this Special Issue. Potential contributors/invited authors are kindly requested to submit a tentative title and a short abstract to our Editorial Office (reproductivemedicine@mdpi.com) for pre-evaluation. Please note that selected full papers will still be subject to a thorough and rigorous peer review. All papers will be published on an ongoing basis. Papers will be published with full open access after peer review.

Prof. Dr. Stefano Palomba
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All submissions that pass pre-check are peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Reproductive Medicine is an international peer-reviewed open access quarterly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1000 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • reproductive medicine
  • reproductive surgery
  • female and male infertility
  • PCOS
  • endocrine diseases influencing reproduction
  • ovulation induction
  • ovarian stimulation for IVF/ICSI cycles

Published Papers (10 papers)

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Research

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6 pages, 523 KiB  
Communication
Potential Association between Marital Status and Maternal and Neonatal Complications and Placental Pathology in Singleton Pregnancy
by Peilin Zhang, Naureen Shama, Arlene Shama and Sanford Lederman
Reprod. Med. 2023, 4(1), 28-33; https://doi.org/10.3390/reprodmed4010004 - 02 Feb 2023
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1520
Abstract
Maternal marital status, educational levels, and income levels were associated with adverse pregnancy outcomes and placental inflammatory changes, preterm delivery, and stillbirth. We aimed to examine the association of marital status with maternal and neonatal complications and placental pathology in singleton pregnancy. A [...] Read more.
Maternal marital status, educational levels, and income levels were associated with adverse pregnancy outcomes and placental inflammatory changes, preterm delivery, and stillbirth. We aimed to examine the association of marital status with maternal and neonatal complications and placental pathology in singleton pregnancy. A total of 3724 singleton placentas with maternal neonatal and placental pathology data were included in the study, and there were statistically significant associations between marital status and maternal age, race/ethnicity, maternal BMI at delivery, neonatal birth weight, preeclampsia, and preterm delivery. There were significant associations between marital status and maternal inflammatory response, maternal vascular malperfusion, and meconium stain of fetal membranes. These data demonstrated that marital status affects not only the maternal well-being during pregnancy, but also neonatal birth data and placental pathology. Full article
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14 pages, 1716 KiB  
Article
A New Bioreactor to Promote Human Follicular Growth with or without Activin A in Transgender Men
by Cynthia Jovet, Eloïse Fraison, Jacqueline Lornage, Nicolas Morel Journel, Antoine Gavoille, Laurent David, Alexandra Montembault, Cyrielle Fournier, Bruno Salle and Elsa Labrune
Reprod. Med. 2023, 4(1), 14-27; https://doi.org/10.3390/reprodmed4010003 - 28 Jan 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1635
Abstract
The aim of the present study was to evaluate the effect of activin A on the activation of in vitro folliculogenesis of human ovarian tissues from transgender men with or without our new compartmented chitosan hydrogel microbioreactor (“three-dimensional (3D)-structure”) enabling a three-dimensional tissue [...] Read more.
The aim of the present study was to evaluate the effect of activin A on the activation of in vitro folliculogenesis of human ovarian tissues from transgender men with or without our new compartmented chitosan hydrogel microbioreactor (“three-dimensional (3D)-structure”) enabling a three-dimensional tissue culture. Five fresh ovarian human tissues were cultured in vitro for 20 or 22 days in four groups with 100 ng/mL activin A or without activin A during the last six to eight days of culture, and within a 3D-structure or without the 3D-structure in standard conditions. Follicular density and quality were evaluated, and follicular diameters were measured. Estradiol secretion was quantified. Proliferation and apoptosis through immunostaining were also performed. The proportion of primordial follicles was significantly reduced, and the proportion of primary and secondary follicles was significantly increased in all four groups (p < 0.001). Tertiary follicles were observed in the four culture groups. Activin A supplementation did not significantly affect the follicular density, follicular quality, follicular growth, or estradiol secretion (p > 0.05). The 3D-structure increased the density of primary follicles and decreased the estradiol secretion (p < 0.001). Follicular proliferation was significantly lower in the 3D-structure group compared to the non-3D-structure group (p = 0.008). Regarding follicular apoptosis, it was significantly higher in the activin group compared to the non-activin group (p = 0.006). Activin A did not seem to play a key role in the in vitro folliculogenesis activation in our culture conditions. However, the results may indicate that the 3D-structure could be more physiological and could prevent a detrimental in vitro folliculogenesis flare-up. Full article
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15 pages, 1365 KiB  
Article
Assessment of In-Hospital Pain Control after Childbirth and Its Correlation with Anxiety in the Postpartum Period: A Cross-Sectional Study at a Single Center in the USA
by Clara G. Olson, John R. Soehl, Zachary N. Stowe and Kathleen M. Antony
Reprod. Med. 2022, 3(4), 334-348; https://doi.org/10.3390/reprodmed3040026 - 12 Dec 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1922
Abstract
Anxiety is common during the antepartum, intrapartum, and postpartum period. While the relationship between obstetric pain and depression is well characterized, there are few publications examining the relationship between obstetric pain and anxiety. Our objective was to characterize the association, if any, between [...] Read more.
Anxiety is common during the antepartum, intrapartum, and postpartum period. While the relationship between obstetric pain and depression is well characterized, there are few publications examining the relationship between obstetric pain and anxiety. Our objective was to characterize the association, if any, between postpartum pain and anxiety. This was a survey-based cross-sectional study. The general anxiety disorder (GAD)-7 and American Pain Society patient outcome questionnaire (APS-POQ) were completed by 64 postpartum participants at hospital discharge. Associations between anxiety and pain control were assessed. Participants with moderate to severe scores (greater or equal to 10) on the GAD-7 had more maximum pain scores (0 to 10 scale) in the severe range (greater or equal to 7) in the first (p = 0.049) and second (p = 0.010) 24 h periods after delivery and were more likely to have spent more time in severe pain within these time frames (p = 0.007 and p = 0.010, respectively). Similar relationships were observed when classifying anxiety ordinally. In conclusion, higher postpartum pain scores were associated with greater anxiety in the postpartum period. Full article
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10 pages, 1714 KiB  
Article
Variation in Anti-Mullerian Hormone Levels with Age in Women Accessing In Vitro Fertilization Services in Ghana
by Dickson Mawusi, Kwame Adu-Bonsaffoh, Chrissie Stansie Abaidoo and Frederick Kwaku Addai
Reprod. Med. 2022, 3(3), 253-262; https://doi.org/10.3390/reprodmed3030020 - 02 Sep 2022
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 2736
Abstract
Background: The emergence of AMH as a reliable biomarker for assessing ovarian reserve and optimization of assisted reproductive technology (ART) remains a promising tool for the evaluation and prediction of controlled ovarian stimulation (COS) outcomes. This study assessed the association between serum AMH [...] Read more.
Background: The emergence of AMH as a reliable biomarker for assessing ovarian reserve and optimization of assisted reproductive technology (ART) remains a promising tool for the evaluation and prediction of controlled ovarian stimulation (COS) outcomes. This study assessed the association between serum AMH levels and maternal age in females receiving in vitro fertilization (IVF) treatment in Ghana. Methods: We conducted a prospective cohort study at a specialized fertility center in Ghana. Descriptive analysis was performed, and the differences between maternal age and AMH categories were assessed by the Kruskal–Wallis test. Results: We included 426 women with mean (±SD) age and AMH levels of 35.25 ± 6.33 years and 2.80 ± 2.60 ng/mL, respectively. Women with very-low AMH levels (0.94 ± 73 ng/mL) were older (>40 years), whereas the younger (20–25 years) group had higher levels (4.85 ± 3.34 ng/mL). There was a significant negative correlation between women’s age and serum AMH levels (R = −0.46; p < 0.001). None of the younger women had AMH levels <0.30 ng/mL, while 70% of women who had AMH levels of <0.30 ng/mL were older women (>40years). In addition, none of the older women had AMH levels >4 ng/mL with only 5% having AMH levels between 2.20 and 4.0 ng/mL. Conclusions: AMH levels ≤0.3 ng/mL are archetypal of 70% of Ghanaian women >40 years old receiving fertility treatment. A combined assessment of AMH levels and age supports clinical decisions in predicting ovarian response to controlled ovarian stimulation (COS) and may be valuable in predicting of IVF success. Further research to evaluate the combined use of age, AMH, and other ovarian reserve markers in assessing ovarian response to COS is recommended. Full article
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29 pages, 2519 KiB  
Article
Construction of Copy Number Variation Map Identifies Small Regions of Overlap and Candidate Genes for Atypical Female Genitalia Development
by Ashley U. Amukamara and Ina E. Amarillo
Reprod. Med. 2022, 3(2), 160-188; https://doi.org/10.3390/reprodmed3020014 - 14 Jun 2022
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 2108
Abstract
Copy number variations (CNVs) have been implicated in various conditions of differences of sexual development (DSD). Generally, larger genomic aberrations are more often considered disease-causing or clinically relevant, but over time, smaller CNVs have been associated with various forms of DSD. The main [...] Read more.
Copy number variations (CNVs) have been implicated in various conditions of differences of sexual development (DSD). Generally, larger genomic aberrations are more often considered disease-causing or clinically relevant, but over time, smaller CNVs have been associated with various forms of DSD. The main objective of this study is to identify small CNVs and the smallest regions of overlap (SROs) in patients with atypical female genitalia (AFG) and build a CNV map of AFG. We queried the DECIPHER database for recurrent duplications and/or deletions detected across the genome of AFG individuals. From these data, we constructed a chromosome map consisting of SROs and investigated such regions for genes that may be associated with the development of atypical female genitalia. Our study identified 180 unique SROs (7.95 kb to 45.34 Mb) distributed among 22 chromosomes. The most SROs were found in chromosomes X, 17, 11, and 22. None were found in chromosome 3. From these SROs, we identified 22 genes as potential candidates. Although none of these genes are currently associated with AFG, a literature review indicated that almost half were potentially involved in the development and/or function of the reproductive system, and only one gene was associated with a disorder that reported an individual patient with ambiguous genitalia. Our data regarding novel SROs requires further functional investigation to determine the role of the identified candidate genes in the development of atypical female genitalia, and this paper should serve as a catalyst for downstream molecular studies that may eventually affect the genetic counseling, diagnosis, and management of these DSD patients. Full article
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9 pages, 486 KiB  
Article
Effects of Chemotherapy on Fertility Preservation in Patients with Tumors of the Hematopoietic and Lymphoid Tissues
by Ryosuke Akino, Shogo Nishii, Kei Odawara, Megumi Saito, Miwa Sakamoto, Tetsuro Kondo and Akihiko Sekizawa
Reprod. Med. 2022, 3(2), 141-149; https://doi.org/10.3390/reprodmed3020012 - 09 Jun 2022
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1965
Abstract
Fertility preservation is an important concern for young cancer patients. Oocyte or embryo cryopreservation prior to chemotherapy administration is desirable but often difficult for patients with hematopoietic and lymphoid tissue tumors. In this study, we examined the results of fertility preservation therapy in [...] Read more.
Fertility preservation is an important concern for young cancer patients. Oocyte or embryo cryopreservation prior to chemotherapy administration is desirable but often difficult for patients with hematopoietic and lymphoid tissue tumors. In this study, we examined the results of fertility preservation therapy in patients with hematopoietic and lymphoid tissue tumors. We retrospectively examined hematopoietic and lymphoid tissue tumors of five patients who underwent oocyte cryopreservation as a fertility preservation therapy after chemotherapy, at Showa University Hospital from February 2017 to September 2020. Eleven treatment cycles were administered (one of which was cancelled). The mean age of the patients was 28.6 years. The mean controlled ovarian stimulation duration for 10 cycles was 15.9 days, the mean total gonadotropin dose was 3705 IU, and the mean peak E2 was 502.8 (pg/mL). The mean number of eggs retrieved was 3.2, the mean number of mature oocytes was 2.1, and the mean maturation rate (mature oocytes/returned oocytes) was 70.7%. Fertility preservation procedures in the early period after chemotherapy may be viable because they allow for the acquisition of mature oocytes, even though the procedures may take longer and yield fewer oocytes. Full article
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Review

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15 pages, 627 KiB  
Review
Hypo-Osmotic Swelling Test and Male Factor
by Jerome H. Check, Diane L. Check and Aniela Bollendorf
Reprod. Med. 2023, 4(2), 118-132; https://doi.org/10.3390/reprodmed4020013 - 12 Jun 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 2617
Abstract
For over 30 years, defects of the functional integrity of the sperm membrane, as evidenced by a low hypo-osmotic swelling test when evaluating the semen analysis, are not only associated with male infertility (even with sperm that otherwise seem normal), but unless corrected, [...] Read more.
For over 30 years, defects of the functional integrity of the sperm membrane, as evidenced by a low hypo-osmotic swelling test when evaluating the semen analysis, are not only associated with male infertility (even with sperm that otherwise seem normal), but unless corrected, successful intrauterine pregnancies will rarely ensue. This defect, interestingly, does not impair fertilization of the oocyte, but instead, prevents a normal-appearing embryo from successfully implanting. The frequency in infertile couples increases with advancing age of the male, ranging from 5% in younger males to 25% in men in their late forties or early fifties. It seems to be related to a toxic protein added to the sperm as they traverse the ejaculatory ducts. The defect is very correctable, either by treating the sperm with the protein digestive enzyme chymotrypsin prior to intrauterine insemination and avoidance of unprotected sex prior to ovulation, or in vitro fertilization with intracytoplasmic sperm injection. Unfortunately, this very inexpensive, easy-to-perform test is rarely performed by the large majority of physicians treating infertility. The purpose of this manuscript is to hopefully rekindle interest within the infertility community to add this test to the standard semen analysis. Full article
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Other

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8 pages, 269 KiB  
Commentary
The Psychosocial Impact of Polycystic Ovary Syndrome
by Virginie Simon, Maëliss Peigné and Didier Dewailly
Reprod. Med. 2023, 4(1), 57-64; https://doi.org/10.3390/reprodmed4010007 - 06 Mar 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 6584
Abstract
Polycystic ovary syndrome is a common endocrine disorder affecting 5–20% of women in association with metabolic disorders and insulin resistance. Patients with PCOS are also at increased risk of developing cardiovascular sound aspects of polycystic ovaries and metabolic complications, a psychosocial impact that [...] Read more.
Polycystic ovary syndrome is a common endocrine disorder affecting 5–20% of women in association with metabolic disorders and insulin resistance. Patients with PCOS are also at increased risk of developing cardiovascular sound aspects of polycystic ovaries and metabolic complications, a psychosocial impact that exists, which is poorly known, assessed and treated. The delay, sometimes long, for diagnosis and its announcement has a strong impact on the feelings and life projects of these patients. Psychological co-morbidities such as depression, anxiety, eating disorders as well as a decrease in self-esteem and quality of life are frequently described in these patients and must, therefore, be screened and treated. Full article
6 pages, 1750 KiB  
Case Report
A Case of Sex Discordant Dichorionic Diamniotic Twins after Single Embryo Transfer and the Importance of Zygosity Testing
by Thanvi Vatti, Kathryn Coyne, Sung Tae Kim, Joseph Findley, Rebecca Flyckt and Rachel Weinerman
Reprod. Med. 2023, 4(1), 34-39; https://doi.org/10.3390/reprodmed4010005 - 02 Feb 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1787
Abstract
Single embryo transfer (SET) is a technique used in assisted reproductive treatment (ART) that is used to promote singleton pregnancies. To date, there are five reported cases of dizygotic twin pregnancies with mothers who underwent SET. Here, we present a sixth case of [...] Read more.
Single embryo transfer (SET) is a technique used in assisted reproductive treatment (ART) that is used to promote singleton pregnancies. To date, there are five reported cases of dizygotic twin pregnancies with mothers who underwent SET. Here, we present a sixth case of a dichorionic, diamniotic twin pregnancy with sex discordance. The patient is a 34-year-old woman with unexplained secondary infertility who underwent in vitro fertilization (IVF) and frozen-thawed embryo transfer from a SET. The ultrasonographic images from the first and second trimester scans identified dichorionic, diamniotic twin gestations. The delivery was full term and postnatal genetic testing confirmed 46, XX, and 46, XY offspring. Pathology reports of the placental and membrane findings reported diamniotic, dichorionic twins. There was no zygosity testing conducted, thus it is unknown if the twins are monozygotic or dizygotic. Two possible etiologies for sex-discordant twins, in this case, are concurrent natural conception via breakthrough ovulation at the time of SET, or discordant postzygotic nondisjunction of a single embryo. Multiple gestations may still occur in the setting of SET and zygosity testing in these instances would better elucidate our understanding of this occurrence. Moreover, improved data on the zygosity of multiple gestations following SET may enhance patient counseling. Full article
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11 pages, 11570 KiB  
Brief Report
Pathway Analysis of Genome Wide Association Studies (GWAS) Data Associated with Male Infertility
by Rupashree Salvi, Ulka Gawde, Susan Idicula-Thomas and Barnali Biswas
Reprod. Med. 2022, 3(3), 235-245; https://doi.org/10.3390/reprodmed3030018 - 12 Aug 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 2267
Abstract
Background: Infertility is a common condition affecting approximately 10–20% of the reproductive age population. Idiopathic infertility cases are thought to have a genetic basis, but the underlying causes are largely unknown. However, the genetic basis underlying male infertility in humans is only partially [...] Read more.
Background: Infertility is a common condition affecting approximately 10–20% of the reproductive age population. Idiopathic infertility cases are thought to have a genetic basis, but the underlying causes are largely unknown. However, the genetic basis underlying male infertility in humans is only partially understood. The Purpose of the study is to understand the current state of research on the genetics of male infertility and its association with significant biological mechanisms. Results: We performed an Identify Candidate Causal SNPs and Pathway (ICSN Pathway) analysis using a genome-wide association study (GWAS) dataset, and NCBI-PubMed search which included 632 SNPs in GWAS and 451 SNPs from the PubMed server, respectively. The ICSN Pathway analysis produced three hypothetical biological mechanisms associated with male infertility: (1) rs8084 and rs7192→HLA-DRA→inflammatory pathways and cell adhesion; rs7550231 and rs2234167→TNFRSF14→TNF Receptor Superfamily Member 14→T lymphocyte proliferation and activation; rs1105879 and rs2070959→UGT1A6→UDP glucuronosyltransferase family 1 member A6→Metabolism of Xenobiotics, androgen, estrogen, retinol, and carbohydrates. Conclusions: We believe that our results may be helpful to study the genetic mechanisms of male infertility. Pathway-based methods have been applied to male infertility GWAS datasets to investigate the biological mechanisms and reported some novel male infertility risk pathways. This pathway analysis using GWAS dataset suggests that the biological process related to inflammation and metabolism might contribute to male infertility susceptibility. Our analysis suggests that genetic contribution to male infertility operates through multiple genes affecting common inflammatory diseases interacting in functional pathways. Full article
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