PCOS, or Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome, is a very common female reproductive disorder. Just how common is PCOS? Well, it affects up to ten percent of all women of childbearing age. PCOS is a disorder that is characterized by insulin resistance. In women with PCOS, cells stop recognizing insulin levels and begin to produce too much.
When this happens, more androgens, or male hormones, are produced. When there are more androgens than estrogens in the body, ovulation is affected and pregnancy can be difficult. A new study indicates a potential connection between excess protein and PCOS. Read on for more info.
The study, funded by scientists at the National Institutes of Health, found that there is a variant in a gene active in cells of the ovary that may lead to production of androgens, which are one of the biggest contributing factors of PCOS. Androgens are male hormones, sort of like testosterone, which cause big problems for women with PCOS.
These findings are especially helpful because they have the potential to help scientists and doctors develop a test that might be able to help pinpoint which women are going to be more at risk for PCOS. This would be a huge step in the right direction for a disorder which affects so many women.
This gene, called DENND1A, is the gene that contains the information needed to make a protein. The protein, made of theca cells, lines the inner surfaces of the ovarian follicles, and forms cysts. There have been studies done in the past that show that those theca cells are responsible for the high levels of androgens found in some women with PCOS.
Doctors and researchers are now also working hard to try to determine whether or not PCOS is hereditary, which would be a good way to give young women a clue that they might be at risk for the condition, if they have a family member who also has it. PCOS can be a very difficult disorder to diagnose, since there are so many symptoms, and those symptoms vary from woman to woman.
This new research would be a great breakthrough for the young women all over the world who currently have PCOS but do not know it because they are not diagnosed. This could help women to know whether or not they have the risk factor for PCOS, and that way they can be diligent and seek help early.Protein Excess Implicated in PCOS,