Last updated on February 2020

Effect of Different Ovarian Stimulation Protocols on Endometrial Receptivity


Brief description of study

This study will assess the change in endometrial gene expression signature on the day of embryo transfer according to the type of exogenous gonadotropins administered.

Detailed Study Description

Late-follicular elevated progesterone (LFEP) following ovarian stimulation for assisted reproductive technologies (ART) has been linked to abnormal endometrial receptivity expression profiles and lower pregnancy rates. For this reason, physicians frequently propose that patients with LFEP avoid performing a fresh embryo transfer, postponing instead it to a subsequent unstimulated cycle. Although this strategy may reduce the detrimental effect LFEP may have on cumulative ART pregnancy rates, it may also frustrate couples who wish to become pregnant as soon as possible.

With the intent of minimizing potentially-avoidable treatment delays, an increasing number of researchers are proposing that physicians revisit their current ovarian stimulation regimens. One strategy which may reduce the incidence of LFEP is to decrease the dose of gonadotropins administered at the end of stimulation (i.e. a stepdown protocol). A similar approach, using corifollitropin alpha (CFA), has also been recently advanced, taking advantage of the stepdown-like pharmacodynamic profile of this compound.

In order to assess the clinical usefulness of these strategies, the investigators propose a single-center, open-label, paired, randomized trial. The main objective of this study is to assess the changes in the endometrial gene expression profile on the day of fresh embryo transfer according to the type of gonadotropins administered for ovarian stimulation. In summary, all consenting subjects will first undergo an endometrial biopsy seven days after the luteinizing hormone peak in an unmedicated natural cycle. This biopsy will serve as the baseline endometrial biopsy (natural cycle biopsy) for a gene expression analysis. Following this baseline biopsy, subjects will be randomly allocated to a specific type of ovarian stimulation regimen in order to later perform a second endometrial biopsy, this time five days after oocyte retrieval (stimulated cycle biopsy). Subjects will be randomized to administer, on the third day of their menstrual cycle, either a single dose of 150 IU of CFA (study arms 1A and 1B) or a fixed daily dose of 200 IU of recombinant follicle stimulating (rFSH, study arm 2). On the eighth day of stimulation, it is expected that 15% to 30% of all subjects who performed CFA will have reached the follicular development criteria for final oocyte maturation and ovulation triggering.

Clinical Study Identifier: NCT03755973

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