Reprometabolic Syndrome Mediates Subfertility in Obesity

  • End date
    Nov 6, 2022
  • participants needed
  • sponsor
    University of Colorado, Denver
Updated on 19 January 2022
cardiovascular disease
body mass index
chronic disease
regular menstrual cycles
hemoglobin a1c
glycosylated hemoglobin
intrauterine device (iud)
hormone level
Accepts healthy volunteers


Obesity plays an adverse role at every stage of conception and pregnancy and mounting evidence implicates relative hypogonadotropic hypogonadism, and reduced menstrual cycle hormone secretion as likely contributors to the subfertility phenotype and possible contributors to complications of pregnancy and the developmental origin of adult diseases such as diabetes and cardiovascular disease. This study will be the first comprehensive investigation to tie together the patterns of hyperinsulinemia, hyperlipidemia and inflammation, characteristic of obesity and obesity-caused relative hypogonadotropic hypogonadotropism and its potential adverse reproductive outcomes. The investigators findings will be used to inform a subsequent clinical intervention to optimize reproductive outcomes for obese women and their offspring.


Before any of the well-known adverse effects in pregnancy2,3, obesity causes a relatively hypogonadotropic hypogonadal phenotype. Reduced LH, FSH, estradiol (E2) and progesterone secretion are well documented during the menstrual cycles of obese women compared to normal weight women (NWW).4,5. Decreased gonadotropin secretion associated with obesity is related to reduced pituitary sensitivity to GnRH6. This reduction in pituitary sensitivity suggests mediation by circulating factors such as cytokines, insulin, or other pro-inflammatory signals known to be elevated in obesity. We have recently discovered that the combination of hyperinsulinemia and circulating free fatty acids (FFAs), but neither agent alone, can acutely decrease gonadotropin secretion in NWW as well as men, establishing a direct causal linkage for the central hypothesis of this proposal: that chronic pituitary suppression partially mediates obesity related subfertility. Our working model is that the combination of excess, possibly pro-inflammatory (omega-6) circulating FFAs and insulin resistance associated with obesity, cause decreased pituitary sensitivity to GnRH, with a resulting relative sex steroid deficit that further exacerbates the obese phenotype. We have named this phenotype the reprometabolic syndrome. We propose to examine the interrelationships among obesity, reproductive dysfunction and metabolic dysfunction in a mechanistic fashion. We will induce the hypogonadotropic hypogonadal phenotype of obesity in NWW, who will be primed with a high-fat diet (HFD) designed to increase circulating FFAs and produce short-term insulin resistance and higher insulin levels.1,7-11 Before and after priming, we will test the additive effects of lipid excess, insulin, and inflammation on the reproductive and metabolic axes.

Condition Obesity, Infertility, Hyperinsulinism, Hypogonadotropic Hypogonadotropism, adiposity, sterility, Gynecological Infections, hyperinsulinemia, unable to conceive, elevated insulin levels, Female Genital Diseases
Treatment insulin, Intralipid, heparin, GnRH, Dextrose, Hyperinsulinemic euglycemic clamp
Clinical Study IdentifierNCT02653092
SponsorUniversity of Colorado, Denver
Last Modified on19 January 2022

Similar trials to consider


Browse trials for

Not finding what you're looking for?

Every year hundreds of thousands of volunteers step forward to participate in research. Sign up as a volunteer and receive email notifications when clinical trials are posted in the medical category of interest to you.

Sign up as volunteer

user name

Added by • 



Reply by • Private

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet consectetur, adipisicing elit. Ipsa vel nobis alias. Quae eveniet velit voluptate quo doloribus maxime et dicta in sequi, corporis quod. Ea, dolor eius? Dolore, vel!

  The passcode will expire in None.

No annotations made yet

Add a private note
  • abc Select a piece of text from the left.
  • Add notes visible only to you.
  • Send it to people through a passcode protected link.
Add a private note