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Mol Endocrinol. 2014 Jun;28(6):790-804. doi: 10.1210/me.2013-1413. Epub 2014 Mar 28.

Minireview: Metabolism of female reproduction: regulatory mechanisms and clinical implications.

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Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology, and Reproductive Sciences (E.S., E.B., S.C., T.L.H.), Yale School of Medicine, New Haven, Connecticut 06520; Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology (G.N., T.L.H.), University of Szeged, Faculty of Medicine, Szeged, Hungary 6701; Department of Comparative Medicine (T.L.H.), Yale School of Medicine, New Haven, Connecticut 06520; and the Department of Neurobiology (T.L.H.), Yale School of Medicine, New Haven, Connecticut 06520.


Female fertility is highly dependent on successful regulation of energy metabolism. Central processes in the hypothalamus monitor the metabolic state of the organism and, together with metabolic hormones, drive the peripheral availability of energy for cellular functions. In the ovary, the oocyte and neighboring somatic cells of the follicle work in unison to achieve successful metabolism of carbohydrates, amino acids, and lipids. Metabolic disturbances such as anorexia nervosa, obesity, and diabetes mellitus have clinically important consequences on human reproduction. In this article, we review the metabolic determinants of female reproduction and their role in infertility.

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