Ovarian Grafts Restore Endocrine Function Long Term

In five cancer survivors, function restored within 12 to 20 weeks of heterotopic transplantation

TUESDAY, July 3 (HealthDay News) -- For female cancer survivors, heterotopic transplantation of cryobanked human ovarian tissue results in restoration of endocrine function within a few months that can last for as long as seven years, according to a study published in the June issue of the Journal of Assisted Reproduction and Genetics.

S. Samuel Kim, M.D., from the University of Kansas Medical Center in Kansas City, examined endocrine function in five female cancer survivors whose ovarian tissue had been frozen before treatment (at the age of 29 to 37 years old) and thawed and transplanted back into the abdominal region (between the rectus sheath and the rectus muscle) after treatment.

The author found that within 12 to 20 weeks after transplantation endocrine function was restored in all five patients. Four patients required a second transplant one or two years later, which resulted in a longer duration of endocrine function (nine to 84 months). One woman retained endocrine function more than seven years after transplantation and underwent three cycles of in vitro fertilization, resulting in four embryos.

"Long-term endocrine function lasting for seven years can be established with heterotopic transplantation of cryobanked human ovarian tissue," Kim concludes. "Re-establishment of long-term endocrine function after ovarian transplantation will benefit young cancer survivors with premature ovarian failure."

The study was supported by an independent medical grant from Serono.

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