Ghrelin is an endogenous appetite stimulant that may have a role in ovarian function. Women with polycystic ovary syndrome have anovulation and frequently weight management issues; however the associations between ghrelin and hormonal markers in polycystic ovary syndrome have not been well studied. In order to characterize the association between total ghrelin levels and ovarian function and the possible modification of this relationship by obesity, we examined total ghrelin levels and anti-mullerian hormone, total testosterone, and insulin in obese and non-obese women with and without polycystic ovary syndrome. Total ghrelin levels were lower in obese women with polycystic ovary syndrome (n = 45) compared to obese controls (n = 33) (p = 0.005), but similar in non-obese women with polycystic ovary syndrome (n = 20) compared to non-obese controls (n = 21) (p = NS). In the obese polycystic ovary syndrome group, anti-mullerian hormone was associated with ghrelin levels independent of age, insulin, and total testosterone (p = 0.008). There was no association between total ghrelin and anti-mullerian hormone levels in non-obese women with polycystic ovary syndrome, non-obese controls, or obese controls (p = NS). Our results provide evidence for a potential relationship between ghrelin and ovarian function in obese women with polycystic ovary syndrome that was not observed in non-obese women with polycystic ovary syndrome or controls.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism