Published online Nov 27, 2022. doi: 10.4331/wjbc.v13.i5.83
Peer-review started: August 22, 2022
First decision: September 26, 2022
Revised: September 30, 2022
Accepted: November 23, 2022
Article in press: November 23, 2022
Published online: November 27, 2022
The current knowledge and practices in infertility treatment proved suitable for almost all infertility types and their etiologies, except for unexplained infertility (UI) which is when standard-approved infertility tests have not found a clear cause for the couple’s inability to achieve pregnancy. Adipokines such as leptin were found to have a positive relationship with UI in females and they can be used as reliable predictive biomarkers for UI in women.
Despite the established relationship between leptin and female reproduction, the exact role of leptin in women’s infertility is not clear enough and the reasonable conclusion is that “we need further investigations to fill this diagnostic gap”. Where some studies reported high levels of serum leptin in infertile women, other studies reported increased leptin levels in both fertile and infertile women, thus, high serum leptin levels in these patients were not a contributing factor to infertility.
The objective of this study was to evaluate the serum leptin levels in Sudanese women and to ascertain the relationship between serum leptin levels and UI.
A matched (age and body mass index) case-control study was conducted from March 2021 to February 2022. The study samples were 210 women with UI and 190 fertile women of reproductive age who were attending the maternity hospitals and fertility clinics in Khartoum state Sudan. The serum concentration of leptin and other serum biomarkers were determined using enzyme-linked immunosorbent assays.
The results showed that there was a highly statistically significant difference between the two groups (P < 0.001) for all examined eight biomarkers. Whereby, leptin, luteinizing hormone/follicular stimulating hormone (FSH) ratio, prolactin hormone and testosterone (T) were significantly higher in the UI group compared with the control group, in contrast, FSH and estradiol/T ratio were significantly lower in the UI group than in the control group.
This study reveals that leptin could be a potential biomarker for UI in Sudanese women and it may be useful for identifying women with a high risk of infertility.
Further studies need to be carried out to clarify the exact association between leptin levels and UI in women.