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Background: To investigate the metabolic profiles in the follicular fluid (FF) samples from patients undergoing in vitro fertilization (IVF) and to analyze the correlations with follicular development. Methods: The FF samples were obtained from participants (N = 26) who were receiving IVF under the gonadotropin-releasing hormone agonist (GnRH-a) long protocol stimulation and were collected separately from small (8-13 mm) and large (17-22 mm) follicles at the time of oocyte retrieval. Metabolomic analysis of the FF samples was performed using liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS). Results: The results demonstrated that the size of the follicle influences the metabolic signature of the FF according to the profile and differential metabolites. Dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA), which is enriched in steroid hormone biosynthesis, correlated negatively with the oocyte maturation rate and the high-quality embryo rate, and thus could be used to estimate the predictive diagnostic potential of follicular development. Conclusion: The FF has different metabolic characteristics in different stages of follicular development. Exploring meaningful metabolites could predict follicular development, and modifications of these metabolites could influence follicular development.
Yang, J., Feng, T., Li, S., Zhang, X., & Qian, Y. (2020). Human follicular fluid shows diverse metabolic profiles at different follicle developmental stages. Reproductive Biology and Endocrinology, 18(1). https://doi.org/10.1186/s12958-020-00631-x