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Fertil Steril. 2006 Jun;85(6):1563-81.

Interactions of the hormones leptin, ghrelin, adiponectin, resistin, and PYY3-36 with the reproductive system.

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Instituto Valenciano de Infertilidad, University of Valencia, Valencia, Spain.



To summarize the effects of novel hormones (leptin, ghrelin, adiponectin, resistin, and PYY3-36) secreted from adipose tissue and the gastrointestinal tract that have been discovered to exert different effects on several reproductive functions, such as the hypothalamic-pituitary-gonadal axis, embryo development, implantation physiology, and clinically relevant conditions.


A MEDLINE computer search was performed to identify relevant articles.


Leptin and ghrelin exert important roles on body weight regulation, eating behavior, and reproduction, acting on the central nervous system and target reproductive organs. As a marker of adequate nutritional stores, these hormones may act on the central nervous system to initiate the complex process of puberty and maintain normal reproductive function. In addition, leptin and ghrelin and their receptors are involved in reproductive events such as gonadal function, embryo development, and embryo-endometrial interaction.


Leptin and ghrelin and other adipose tissue-secreted hormones have significant effects on reproduction. Acting through the brain, these hormones may serve as links between adipose tissue and the reproductive system to supply and regulate energy needs for normal reproduction and pregnancy. Future studies are needed to further clarify the role of these hormones in reproductive events and other related gynecological conditions.

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