Journal of Assisted Reproduction and Genetics

K. Kim, M.S. Bloom*, R.W. Browne, E.M. Bell*, R.M. Yucel*, V.Y. Fujimoto



Purpose: Follicular redox balance is likely to be important for embryo quality during in vitro fertilization (IVF), and the anti-oxidative high desity lipoprotein (HDL) particle is the sole lipoprotein measured in follicular fluid (FF). Therefore, we investigated FF HDL particle components as predictors of embryo quality during IVF.

Methods: Two research follicles collected from each participant were individually tracked, and 103 women having at least one developed embryo were included in the analysis. Concentrations of 15 non-cholesterol HDL particle components and 26 HDL-cholesterol (HDL-C) particle size subfractions were determined. Embryo quality was assessed for embryo cell number, embryo fragmentation, and embryo symmetry. Multivariable Poisson regression with a sandwich variance estimator was used to evaluate associations between HDL particle components and embryo quality, adjusted for covariates.

Results: Higher γ-tocopherol concentration was associated with less embryo fragmentation (relative risk [RR] = 4.43; 95 % confidence interval [CI] 1.78, 11.06), and higher apolipoprotein A-1 concentration was associated with full embryo symmetry (RR = 3.92; 95 % CI 1.56, 9.90). Higher concentrations of HDL-C subfractions in the large and medium particle size ranges were associated with poorer embryo quality.

Conclusions: FF HDL lipophilic micronutrients and protein components, as well as HDL-C particle size, may be important predictors of embryo quality during IVF.

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* Denotes CSDA Associates, Affiliates, and Staff