Autologous stem cell ovarian transplantation to increase reproductive potential in patients who are poor responders

Herraiz, S, Romeu, M, Buigues, A, Martinez, S, Diaz-Garcia, C, Gomez-Segui, I, Martinez, J, Pellicer, N, Pellicer, A,
Fertil Steril. Aug. 2018 doi: 10.1016/j.fertnstert.2018.04.025


OBJECTIVE: To evaluate effects of autologous stem cell ovarian transplant (ASCOT) on ovarian reserve and IVF outcomes of women who are poor responders with very poor prognosis. DESIGN: Prospective observational pilot study. SETTING: University hospital. PATIENT(S): Seventeen women who are poor responders. INTERVENTION(S): Ovarian infusion of bone marrow-derived stem cells. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURE(S): Serum antimullerian hormone levels and antral follicular count (AFC), punctured follicles, and oocytes retrieved after stimulation (controlled ovarian stimulation) were measred. Apheresis was analyzed for growth factor concentrations. RESULT(S): The ASCOT resulted in a significant improvement in AFC 2 weeks after treatment. With an increase in AFC of three or more follicles and/or two consecutive increases in antimullerian hormone levels as success criteria, ovarian function improved in 81.3% of women. These positive effects were associated with the presence of fibroblast growth factor-2 and thrombospondin. During controlled ovarian stimulation, ASCOT increased the number of stimulable antral follicles and oocytes, but the embryo euploidy rate was low (16.1%). Five pregnancies were achieved: two after ET, three by natural conception. CONCLUSION(S): Our results suggest that ASCOT optimized the mobilization and growth of existing follicles, possibly related to fibroblast growth factor-2 and thrombospondin-1 within apheresis. The ASCOT improved follicle and oocyte quantity enabling pregnancy in women who are poor responders previously limited to oocyte donation. CLINICAL TRIAL REGISTRATION NUMBER: NCT02240342.