Idiopathic early ovarian aging: Do biomarkers of ageing indicate premenopausal accelerated biological ageing in young women with diminished response to ART?

M W Christensen, D Keefe, F Wang, C Hansen, I Chamani, C Sommer, M Nyegaard, P Rohde, A Nielsen, J Bybjerg-Grauholm, U Kesmodel, U Knudsen, K Kirkegaard, J Ingerslev

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Do young women with idiopathic early ovarian ageing have changes in telomere length and epigenetic age indicating accelerated biological aging?The telomere length and epigenetic age were comparable to those in young women with normal ovarian ageing.Increased risk of several health events usually considered to be age-related such as cardiovascular disease, osteoporosis, over-all morbidity and mortality have been associated with premature and early menopause when compared to the risk in women with normal menopausal age suggesting an accelerated general ageing process associated to early ovarian ageing. It is unclear whether the onset of this process may start before menopause.A prospective cohort study. Young women (≤ 37 years) having ART at two Danish Public fertility clinics during the period 2016 to 2018 were divided into two groups dependent on their ovarian reserve status: early ovarian ageing (EOA) (N = 55) and normal ovarian ageing (NOA)( N = 52). Number of oocytes harvested in first and subsequent cycles was used as a marker of ovarian reserve. Blood samples was drawn at time of oocyte retrieval to assess biological age.EOA was defined as ≥ 2 IVF cycles with ≤ 5 harvested oocytes despite sufficient stimulation with FSH and NOA as ≥ 8 oocytes harvested in minimum 1 cycle. Known causes influencing the ovarian reserve (endometriosis, ovarian surgery, etc.) was reason for exclusion. Relative telomere length (qPCR) and epigenetic age acceleration (DNA methylation levels) were measured in white blood cells as markers of accelerated biological ageing.Relative telomere length was comparable with a mean of 0.46 (± sd 0.12) in the EOA group and 0.47 (0.14) in the normal ovarian ageing group (p = 0.64). The difference of predicted mean epigenetic age and mean chronological age (i.e. epigenetic age acceleration) was, insignificantly, 0.5 years older in the EOA group when compared to the NOA group( (–1.02 years (2.62) and –1.57 years (2.56), respectively, p = 0.27)), but this difference disappeared when adjusting for chronological age.Discrete changes in epigenetic age acceleration may not have been captured as the study only had power to detect an age acceleration of ≥ 2 years.Wider implications of the findings: By analysis of biomarkers for ageing in whole blood, we did not find any indications of a premenopausal accelerated aging in young women with idiopathic EOA. Further investigations in a similar cohort of premenopausal women is needed to fully elucidate the potential relationship between premenopausal accelerated biological ageing and EOA.The study was approved by the Danish Data protection Agency (nr 1–16–02–320–14) and the Regional committee on health research ethics of Central Region Denmark ( 1–10–72–142–14).
Original languageEnglish
Article numberP–617
JournalHuman Reproduction
Issue numberSuppl. 1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Aug 2021
Event37th Virtual Annual Meeting of the European Society of Human Reproduction and Embryology - Virtual
Duration: 26 Jun 20211 Jul 2021
Conference number: 37
http://ESHRE 2021


Conference37th Virtual Annual Meeting of the European Society of Human Reproduction and Embryology
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