Insulin-like factor 3 levels in amniotic fluid of human male fetuses
Authors: Anand-Ivell, Ravinder; Ivell, Richard; Driscoll, Deborah; Manson, Jeanne
Source: Human Reproduction, Volume 23, Number 5, 17 May 2008 , pp. 1180-1186(7)
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Rodent studies suggest that the peptide hormone insulin-like factor 3 (Insl3) made by the fetal testis is responsible for the first transabdominal phase of testicular descent, and may be affected by xenobiotics to disrupt male reproductive tract development. To date, there is very little information on the production of INSL3 by the human fetus during gestation. The objective of the present study was to determine the concentrations and time course during pregnancy of INSL3 and testosterone production in human fetuses and their associations with maternal characteristics, pregnancy complications and outcome.
This is a retrospective cohort study in which women who contributed amniotic fluid specimens to a bank from 20032006 were followed to determine their pregnancy complications and pregnancy outcome. Amniotic fluid specimens were collected from the Reproductive Genetics Laboratory of the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania subsequent to routine amniocentesis. INSL3 and total testosterone levels were measured in amniotic fluid (from n 50 female, n 237 male fetuses) by validated immunoassays and correlated with maternal characteristics, pregnancy complications and outcomes.
INSL3 was only detectable in amniotic fluid from male fetuses, and highest levels occurred from weeks 1517 of gestation. INSL3 concentration was positively associated with increased birth weight, the occurrence of pre-eclampsia and advanced maternal age, but not with testosterone levels.
INSL3 concentration in human amniotic fluid is potentially predictive of fetal sex and pre-eclampsia, and presumably reflects the functioning of the fetal Leydig cell population.
Document Type: Research Article
Publication date: 17 May 2008
- Human Reproduction features full-length, peer-reviewed papers reporting original research, clinical case histories, as well as opinions and debates on topical issues. Papers published cover the scientific and medical aspects of reproductive physiology and pathology, endocrinology, andrology, gonad function, gametogenesis, fertilization, embryo development, implantation, pregnancy, genetics, genetic diagnosis, oncology, infectious disease, surgery, contraception, infertility treatment, psychology, ethics and social issues. The highest scientific and editorial standard is maintained throughout the journal along with a rapid rate of publication.